Posted: 10th November 2022
Maths students at Queen Mary’s College are celebrating the results of their efforts following the recent UK Senior Maths Challenge (SMT). Of the 67 students who sat the paper, 52 gained certificates of merit (23 Bronze awards, 22 Silver and 7 Gold). The UK senior maths challenge is a national competition, open to all schools and colleges in the UK and only to students in years 12 and 13. Most colleges do participate, making it probably the biggest national academic competition there is. The 90-minute paper is a multi-choice test consisting of 25 questions, each with 5 possible answers. Participants all start with 25 marks and gain an additional 4 marks for every correct answer. However, they lose 1 mark for each incorrect answer, to deter students from simply guessing. The competition is run by the UK Mathematics Trust and sponsored by Overleaf. Those who achieved a gold certificate automatically qualify for the follow-on competition, the UK Kangaroo Challenge which takes place on Wednesday 16th November.
QMC maths students always take part enthusiastically and their results are consistently strong. Those who are successful in securing gold, silver and bronze awards are able to include these accolades in their personal statements when applying for university or apprenticeships. The senior maths challenge is just one of many competitions, events and enrichment activities available to maths students at QMC that give them the opportunity to demonstrate and develop their problem-solving prowess. 79% of A level Maths students at Queen Mary’s College achieved high grades in the subject this summer (A*-B), their results far exceeding the national average. Most went on to study at university, the vast majority securing places at their first choice. These latest results give cause for optimism that their achievements will be matched again next summer.
Hannah Dewdney (pictured), a second year student who is studying Mathematics, Further Maths, Physics and Geography was one of the students to be awarded a certificate. Hannah said “I really enjoy Maths at QMC due to the amazing support from my teachers, who are always happy to answer any questions that I have and make sure that we are confident with every topic we cover. I also like the opportunities we get outside our maths lessons such as the Senior Maths Challenge as this targets problem – solving and logic which challenges me, but it is also very fun.”
Director of Learning in Mathematics, David Smith, said ‘we are always delighted to see how keen our students are to apply their problem-solving skills and to pit their wits against their contemporaries at other schools and colleges. There are so many challenges facing the next generation, but all the evidence I see suggests the future is in safe hands. Congratulations to all of them and a special commendation to the seven Kangaroo competitors: 1st years Ben Archer and Luke Davies and 2nd years Olly Brown, Ellie James, Oscar Lodge, Will Miles and Oli Whiles.’