This degree introduces you to mathematical concepts and thinking, and helps you to develop a mathematical approach. Our aims are that you should achieve:
You will also have the opportunity to develop knowledge of, and the ability to apply, some important concepts and techniques of Statistics.
The learning outcomes of this degree (of which there is considerable overlap between the last two) are described in four areas:
On completion of this degree, you will:
The degree programme is flexible at Level 3, offering you also a considerable choice of mathematical topics and related topics, such as physics. You will further develop your mathematical knowledge and understanding in the topics you choose to study. Currently the following topics are available:
Depending on your Level 3 study, you will be able to apply your knowledge and understanding to practical problems or to further advancing your understanding of mathematics. (For example, after completion of this degree you may wish to consider going on to the Mathematics MSc programme.)
The topics may change from time to time, and if they do they will be replaced by others at a similar level and providing similar learning outcomes.
On completion of this degree, you will have acquired:
On completion of this degree, you will be able to demonstrate the following skills:
Application: apply mathematical concepts, principles and methods
Problem solving: analyse and evaluate problems (both theoretical and practical) and plan strategies for their solution
Information technology: use information technology with confidence to acquire and present mathematical knowledge, to model and solve practical problems and to develop mathematical insight
Communication: communicate relevant information accurately and effectively, using a form, structure and style that suit the purpose (including written and face-to-face presentation)
Collaboration: work collaboratively with others on projects requiring mathematical knowledge and input
Independence: be an independent learner, able to acquire further knowledge with little guidance or support.
On completion of the degree, you will be able to demonstrate the following key skills:
Application of number
Learning how to learn
Knowledge, understanding and application skills, as well as cognitive (thinking) skills, are acquired through distance-learning materials that include specially written module texts, guides to study, assignments and (where relevant) projects, and specimen examination papers; through a range of multimedia material (including computer software on some modules); and through feedback from tutors on your assignments.
You will work independently with the distance-learning materials, but are encouraged (particularly at Level 1) to form self-help groups with other students, communicating face to face, by telephone, by email or by online forums. Students will generally be supported by optional tutorials and day schools, which you are strongly advised to attend whenever possible.
Written tutor feedback on assignments provides you with individual tuition and guidance. Modules at higher levels build on the foundations developed in recommended pre-requisite modules at lower levels.
Some Level 1 modules have an examination, as do most modules at Levels 2 and 3. Generally, these permit you to bring and use the module handbook, thus reducing the need for memorisation and concentrating on your ability to apply concepts and techniques and express them clearly and coherently. For each individual module, you must pass both the continuous assessment and the examination (or end-of-module assessment) in order to obtain a pass. At Level 2 and above, your pass will be graded, and the grades will contribute to the determination of the class of Honours degree that you are awarded.
Skills are taught and assessed throughout the programme. Problem solving as described above is assessed, particularly in the Applied Mathematics part of the programme (and the Statistics modules if you choose them).
The use of computing and IT is developed and assessed throughout this qualification.
Communication skills are developed and assessed throughout the programme as you work on assignments and receive feedback from your tutor.
Communication skills in a face-to-face context, as well as collaboration skills in the assessed group work, are developed at the residential week.
The university experience, including distance learning using OU study materials, should develop your ability as a strong independent learner.
The acquisition of the skills of communication, information technology and independence (or learning how to learn) have been covered above.
Application of number is crucial for all higher-level mathematical skills. It is explicitly taught and assessed in the Access and Level 1 modules. The other modules in the programme assume that you already have this skill to an extent appropriate to the module level. On completion of the degree you will certainly have acquired a high level of numeracy.