Level up your skills

After a break away from studying, you may be feeling a little rusty and be worried about the maths and stats you will encounter as part of your course. To help you get a head start, we've created this page which contains everything you need to revise key topics.

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If you'd like to work on your academic skills more generally, visit the 301 Academic Skills Centre.

Level up your academic skills


How to use this page

Getting good at maths and stats is a matter of practising skills, like learning an instrument or a sport. Many people focus on the first step: learning the methods, without moving on to the next step: consolidation through practice. If this sounds familiar, or if you’ve had other problems learning maths in the past, don’t panic! We’re here to help!

Effective methods for learning mathematics follow the Cycle of Practice

Cycle of practice; stage 1 test knowledge; stage 2 refresh knowledge; stage 3 practice. Go back to stage 1 if still need help

Stage 1: Test yourself

Can you solve questions at the required level? Don’t allow yourself to use notes or look things up.  Make sure you actually do the questions, don’t just look at the answers and convince yourself you could have done the question.

If you got the questions right, have you Practiced to the point where you won’t forget the topic? If so, great! It might be time to move on to a new topic. 

If you got some questions wrong, that’s fine, now you know what you need to work on. Move on to stage 2.

Stage 2: Refresh your knowledge

Consider whether you once knew how to do the questions and you’ve forgotten, or whether this topic is new. Can you recall the key points in the method? If you need an explanation of how to do the topic, the resources on this page will help you. Alternatively, you could look for a video or written explanation online. It might help to write your own notes.  If you’ve tried this and it hasn’t helped, consider booking a MASH 1:1 session. There are links at the bottom of this page.

Stage 3: Practice, practice, practice!

Next, you need to find a source of practice questions. The resources on this page should help here as we have created some that are relevant to each topic. Other exercises can be found online or in textbooks. There are links to some other resources at the bottom of this page. To embed a method in your mind you need to apply it repeatedly. You might need to use your notes or go back to the explanation. You know you’ve done enough when you feel like you would be able to do the questions without help in a month’s time. Now it’s time to go back to Stage 1 and test yourself. Ideally, you would do this after a day or two, to be sure that you have understood the method.

Don't forget that if you would like some additional support, you can always book an appointment to speak with one of our friendly advisers. We're here to help all students on all courses at all levels of study. 


Key topics in GCSE-level maths

Numbers
Topic Test your knowledge Refresh your knowledge Practice, practice, practice
Practical estimation Test your knowledge MASH Video on Practical Estimation Corbett maths worksheet on Estimation
Rounding Test your knowledge MASH Video on Rounding

Corbett maths worksheet on rounding (decimals)

Corbett maths worksheet on rounding (significant figures) 

BIDMAS
Topic Test your knowledge Refresh your knowledge Practice, practice, practice

BIDMAS

Test your knowledge

University of Leeds video detailing the order of calculations (note that it calls this BODMAS; 3:19 minutes)

Corbett maths worksheet on order of operations

Fractions
Topic Test your knowledge Refresh your knowledge Practice, practice, practice
Equivalent and cancelling

Test your knowledge

University of Leeds video on equivalent fraction (1:23 minutes)

University of Leeds video on simplifying fractions (1:08 minutes)

Corbett maths worksheet on simplifying fractions

Corbett maths worksheet on equivalent fractions 

Mixed numbers converting to improper

Test your knowledge

MASH video on mixed numbers and improper fractions

Corbett maths worksheet on improper fractions and mixed numbers

Fractions of an amount

Test your knowledge

University of Leeds video on how to calculate a fraction of a particular sum (1:33)

Corbett maths worksheet on fractions of an amount

Finding the original amount

Test your knowledge

MASH video on finding the original amount

Corbett maths worksheet on Fractions: finding the original

Adding, subtracting, multiplying and dividing fractions

Coming soon!

University of Leeds video on adding and subtracting fractions (1:56 minutes)

University of Leeds video on multiply and dividing fractions (2:29 minutes)

MathCentre worksheet

Percentages
Topic Test your knowledge Refresh your knowledge Practice, practice, practice
Of amounts and change (calculator and non-calculator, as a multiplier

Test your knowledge

University of Leeds video on finding percentage amounts (2:36 minutes)

University of Leeds video on calculating percentage increase or decrease (1:31 minutes)

MathCentre worksheet

Reverse percentages

Test your knowledge

University of Leeds video on finding the original amount before percentage change (1:23 minutes)

Corbett maths worksheet on reverse percentages

Compound interest/repeated proportional change

Test your knowledge

MASH video on repeated proportional change

MathCentre resource and worksheet

Converting between fractions, decimals and percentages
Topic Test your knowledge Refresh your knowledge Practice, practice, practice
Converting Fractions, Decimals and Percentages

Test your knowledge

MASH Video on converting between Fractions, Decimals and Percentages

Corbett maths worksheet on converting between Fractions, Decimals and Percentages

Standard form
Topic Test your knowledge Refresh your knowledge Practice, practice, practice
Converting in and out of standard form

Coming soon

Engineering Maths First Aid Kit worksheet on standard form

MASH Video on Writing numbers in Standard Form

Corbett maths worksheet on the standard form

Calculations in standard form

Coming soon

MASH Video on Calculations in Standard Form

Corbett maths worksheet on standard form

Algebraic fractions
Topic Test your knowledge Refresh your knowledge Practice, practice, practice
Addition, subtraction, multiplication and division of algebraic fractions

Coming soon

HELM booklet on the arithmetic of algebraic fractions

Corbett Maths worksheet on adding algebraic fractions

Corbett Maths worksheet on dividing algebraic fractions

Corbett Maths worksheet on multiplying fractions

Simplifying algebra
Topic Test your knowledge Refresh your knowledge Practice, practice, practice
Collecting terms

Test your knowledge

University of Leeds video on simiplifying algebraic expressions (3:09 minutes) 

Corbett maths worksheet on collecting like terms

Expanding linear terms

Test your knowledge

MathCentre booklet on expanding and removing brackets

Corbett maths worksheet on expanding brackets

Factorising linear terms

Test your knowledge

Engineering Maths First Aid Kit worksheet on factorising simple expressions

Corbett maths worksheet on factorisation

Expanding double brackets

Coming soon

Coventry University's worksheet on brackets and quadratics

Corbett maths worksheet on expanding two brackets

Factorising double brackets

Coming soon

MathCentre worksheet on factorising quadratics

Corbett maths worksheet on factorising quadratics

Corbett maths worksheet on factorising harder quadratics

Solving linear equations
Topic Test your knowledge Refresh your knowledge Practice, practice, practice
Unknown on one side

Coming soon

MathCentre worksheet on solving linear equations

Corbett worksheet on solving equations

Unknown on both sides

Coming soon

MathCentre worksheet on solving linear equations

Corbett maths worksheet on solving equations with unknowns on both sides

Indices
Topic Test your knowledge Refresh your knowledge Practice, practice, practice
Rules: multiplying and dividing

Coming soon

University of Leeds video on rules of indices (4:26 minutes)

Corbett maths worksheet on laws of indices

MathCentre worksheet on rules of indices

Trigonometry
Topic Test your knowledge Refresh your knowledge Practice, practice, practice
Pythagoras' theorem

Test your knowledge

University of Leeds video on Pythagoras' Theorem (4:24 minutes)

Corbett maths worksheet on Pythagoras Theorem

Finding missing sides and angles in right angle triangles

Coming soon

University of Leeds resource on sine, cosine and tan (5:44 minutes)

Corbett maths worksheet on Trigonometry


Key topics in higher GCSE and easier A-level maths

Quadratics
Topic Test your knowledge Refresh your knowledge Practice, practice, practice
Solving by factorising

Coming soon

University of Leeds video on solving quadratic equations by factorising (3:42 minutes)

Corbett maths worksheet on solving quadratics by factorising 1

Corbett maths worksheet on solving quadratics by factorising 2

Solving with the formula

Coming soon

University of Leeds video on solving quadratic equations using the formula (3:24 minutes)

Corbett maths worksheet on solving quadratics using the formula

Completing the square

Coming soon

University of Leeds video on solving quadratic equations by completing the square (3:09 minutes)

Corbett maths worksheet on solving quadratics by completing the square

Quadratic graphs

Test your knowledge

MASH Video on Sketching Quadratic Graphs

Corbett maths worksheet on sketching quadratics

Simultaneous equations
Topic Test your knowledge Refresh your knowledge Practice, practice, practice
Linear by elimination

Coming soon

University of Leeds video on simultaneous linear equations (5:20 minutes)

Corbett maths worksheet on solving simultaneous linear equations by elimination

Linear by substitution

Coming soon

University of Leeds video on simultaneous linear equations (5:20 minutes)

Khan Academy quiz on solving simultaneous linear equations by substitution

Graphical solution

Test your knowledge

University of Leeds video on geometry: parallel, perpendicular and intersecting lines (9:23 minutes)

Corbett maths worksheet on solving simultaneous linear equations graphically

Algebraic and graphical when one non-linear

Coming soon

MASH Video on Substitution method for one linear and one non-linear equation

MASH Video on Simultaneous Equations and Graphs

Corbett maths worksheet on further simultaneous linear equations

Indices
Topic Test your knowledge Refresh your knowledge Practice, practice, practice
Fractional and negative indices

Coming soon

University of Leeds video on negative indices (2:55 minutes)

MASH video on Fractional Indices

Corbett maths worksheet on fractional indices

Corbett maths worksheet on negative indices

MathCentre worksheet on negative and fractional powers

Key topics in A-level maths

Algebraic fractions
Topic Test your knowledge Refresh your knowledge Practice, practice, practice
Partial fractions

Coming soon

MathCentre booklet on partial fractions

MathCentre worksheet on partial fractions

Factor and remainder theorem
Topic Test your knowledge Refresh your knowledge Practice, practice, practice
Factor and remainder theorem

Coming soon

Coventry University worksheet on factor and remainder theorem

Maths Support Centre worksheet on Factor and remainder theorem

Logarithms
Topic Test your knowledge Refresh your knowledge Practice, practice, practice
Definition

Coming soon

MathCentre booklet on logarithms

MathCentre worksheet on logarithms

Multiplication, division, power rules

Coming soon

MathCentre worksheet on the laws of logarithms

MathCentre worksheet on the laws of logarithms

Trigonometry
Topic Test your knowledge Refresh your knowledge Practice, practice, practice
Graphs of sine, cosine and tan

Test your knowledge

MASH Video on Graphs of Sine, Cosine and Tangent

Engineering maths first aid kit: worksheet on graphs of trigonometric functions

Sine and cosine rules

Coming soon

University of Leeds video on the sine rule (11:16 minutes)

University of Leeds video on the cosine rule (9:31 minutes)

Engineering maths first aid kit: the sine rule and the cosine rule


Probability and statistics refresher

Measures of average
Topic Test your knowledge Refresh your knowledge Practice, practice, practice
Mean, median and mode definitions and from lists

Coming soon

MathsCentre resource on mean, median and mode

Khan Academy video on calculating measures of average

Corbett Maths worksheet on averages and the range

Mean, median and mode from frequency tables (including grouped)

Test your knowledge

University of Leeds video on calculating the mean from a frequency table (2:10 minutes)

University of Leeds video on calculating the mean from grouped data (3:25 minutes)

University of Leeds video on calculating the median from a frequency table (2:14 minutes)

University of Leeds video on calculating the median from grouped data (2:37)

Corbett Maths worksheet on calculating the mean from a frequency table

Corbett Maths worksheet on estimating the mean

Corbett Maths worksheet on calculating the median from a frequency table

Corbett Maths worksheet on using linear interpolation to calculate the median

Spread
Topic Test your knowledge Refresh your knowledge Practice, practice, practice
Range, interquartile range, the idea of spread

Coming soon

Khan Academy video on the Interquartile range

Khan Academy video on the range and mid-range

Corbett Maths worksheet on averages and the range

Coventry University measures of spread worksheet

Variance and standard deviation

Coming soon

Khan Academy video on range, variance and standard deviation

Khan Academy video on sample variance

MathCentre worksheet on the variance and standard deviation of ungrouped data

MathCentre worksheet on the variance and standard deviation of grouped data

Displaying information
Topic Test your knowledge Refresh your knowledge Practice, practice, practice
Barcharts, pie charts, tally charts

Test your knowledge

University of Leeds video on barcharts (1:30 minutes)

University of Leeds video on piecharts (2:33 minutes)

MASH resource on displaying data in charts - some simple charts

Corbett Maths worksheet on reading barcharts

Corbett Maths worksheet on pie charts

Corbett Maths worksheet on tally charts

Box plots

Test your knowledge (Drawing)

Test your knowledge (Interpreting)

MASH resource on interpreting a box-plot

Khan Academy video on boxplots

Corbett Maths worksheet on box plots

Histograms

Test your knowledge

MASH video on Histograms

Corbett Maths worksheet on histograms

Collecting information
Topic Test your knowledge Refresh your knowledge Practice, practice, practice
Types of data

Test your knowledge

MASH resource on types of data

Corbett Maths resource on quantitative and qualitative data

Corbett Maths resource on continuous and discrete data

Corbett Maths resource on primary and secondary data

Probability
Topic Test your knowledge Refresh your knowledge Practice, practice, practice
Equally likely events

Coming soon

HELM workbook on elementary probability

Khan Academy video on probability

Coventry University resource on probability

Corbett Maths resource on probability

Conditional probability

Coming soon

Khan Academy video on conditional probabilities and combinations

Corbett Maths resource on conditional probability


Jumpstart University

The Jumpstart University hub has been developed by The Open University in collaboration with the Russell Group to help students starting university this year to prepare for and settle into their studies. Below are links to the maths and stat resources.

Succeed with Maths - Part 1

Does maths feel like a bit of a mystery to you? Are you looking to improve your confidence in using maths in a variety of everyday situations? If so, this course is for you.

Beginning with the very foundations of maths, it will start by looking at how numbers are put together, before guiding you through how to use percentages, fractions and negative numbers. Taking real-life examples you will have the opportunity to Practice your new skills and build your confidence in using maths to solve problems in everyday life and the wider world.

This course will encourage you to not just mechanically follow the rules that are written to help with maths, but to also gain an understanding and appreciation of what lies behind these rules.

Start the course

Succeed with Maths - Part 2

Following on from the course above, this course will continue to develop your mathematical knowledge and skills using everyday examples.

It will guide you through measurement, scientific notation (based upon powers of 10) and roots of numbers, shapes and how to calculate their properties before finally turning to how to construct and read from tables, charts and graphs.

It provides a solid foundation for you to continue with studies in any subject which requires some degree of mathematical knowledge.

Start the course

Mathematics for science and technology

Maths is intimately entwined with science and technology, whether it is used to analyse data collected on plants in the Amazon rainforest, to calculate the trajectory of a comet or design a bridge to connect two countries. This means that science and technology go hand-in-hand with maths, and that a firm grasp of maths is crucial for studying any science and technology discipline.

This course will help you build a stronger grip with the maths helping hand. You’ll learn about the power of algebra, get a sense of scientific notation, the beauty of basic trigonometry and why 70 db (decibels) is 10 times more powerful than 60 db. As well as this you will delve into scientific measurement, including the importance of units and the flexibility and practically of the SI – the internationally recognised system of units based on multiples of ten.

Start the course

Medical statistics

This course is concerned with some of the statistical methods used in epidemiology and more widely in medical statistics.

  • Section 1 introduces cohort studies in which individuals are classified according to their exposure and followed forward in time to evaluate disease outcomes.
  • Section 2 looks at models for cohort studies.
  • Section 3 introduces case-control studies in which individuals are selected according to their disease status and past exposures are then ascertained.
  • Section 4 covers testing for no association in cohort studies and case-control studies.

Start the course


Maths Anxiety

And last, but by no means least, if the thought of maths and stats makes you feel anxious, you are not alone: over 80% of students have some form of maths anxiety. Why not take a look at our maths anxiety page. It contains an online resource for you to work through to help you address this. We also run workshops on maths anxiety and there is a link to the workshop page as well.


We are constantly working to improve and add to these resources. If you have any suggestions or feedback, let us know.

Two people sitting at a table looking at some work together
Two people sitting at a table looking at some work together

Book a 1:1 appointment or workshop

Would you like to explore a maths or stats topic in greater depth? Why not book a 1:1 with an advisor or a workshop (current students only).