Durham University
Programme and Module Handbook

Undergraduate Programme and Module Handbook 2014-2015 (archived)


Department: Mathematical Sciences


Type Tied Level 3 Credits 20 Availability Available in 2014/15 Module Cap None. Location Durham
Tied to G100
Tied to G103
Tied to G104
Tied to CFG0
Tied to FGC0
Tied to QRVA
Tied to QRV0


  • At least 3 Maths modules taken in second year, at least two of which are at level 2.


  • At least two other level 3 maths modules.

Excluded Combination of Modules

  • The 'Science Into Schools' modules from other departments.


  • To encourage the students to reflect on the content, method and learning of mathematics from the points of view of school and university
  • To help understand how mathematics teaching fits into a wider education system.
  • To develop students' group and presentation skills
  • To help inform students' future career decisions


  • The Educational landscape: the Mathematics Curriculum, assessment, performance indicators and participation issues.
  • Issues in Mathematics teaching and learning and its assessment
  • Student-led examination of resources for teaching mathematics.
  • Collection of examples from school visits and analysis and discussion of material collected from pupil mathematical viewpoints.

Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
  • By the end of the module, students will have gained an awareness of current issues in Mathematics Teaching and Learning and its assessment.
  • Will be able to solve novel and/or complex problems in Mathematics Teaching.
  • have acquired a coherent body of knowledge of these subjects demonstrated through the observation and reflection on mathematics through school visits.
  • have acquired a coherent body of knowledge of the issues related to Mathematics teaching and learning, demonstrated through the observation and reflection on mathematics teaching through school visits and project work.
Subject-specific Skills:
  • Reflection on a number of areas of school mathematics from an advanced standpoint.
  • Development of a broad mathematical capability
Key Skills:
  • Students will have advanced skills in problem solving.
  • Students will gain relevant delivery skills in a teaching context

Modes of Teaching, Learning and Assessment and how these contribute to the learning outcomes of the module

  • Students will be selected for the module by interview in June before the module is taken
  • seminars will examine the key issues that influence mathematics teaching in the current educational climate.
  • students will be expected to contribute material from their own research in discussions at seminars
  • students will engage in topical issues in Mathematics Teaching e.g. Linear v Modular assessment at A’level.
  • students will be assessed by continual assessments related to one or more issues relevant to Mathematics Education and based on material from seminars and the students' own research.
  • Students will visit a secondary school on three occasions in Michaelmas term to observe lessons.
  • The school file will consist of a report and analysis of lesson observations in Michaelmas term, and should demonstrate how their knowledge of the pedagogy of mathematics teaching has influenced their observation of lessons.
  • In Epiphany students will be involved in a school placement throughout the term and negotiate an individual project suitable for the school’s needs, their own project assessment needs and acceptable to the module leader
  • The project will be a substantial piece of independent research. An evidence base will be expected with clear hypothesis and conclusion.
  • The module leader will visit each placement during the term, and surgery sessions will be run during the week of school half-term to support students with any issues that have arisen.
  • The second term school placement may or may not take place at the same school used for the school visit in Michaelmas, and may be at a primary school
  • In addition to the student's own School project report, schools will be asked for some qualitative input into the assessment of the project.
  • Towards the end of Epiphany term, students will give a presentation of around 20 minutes on their school project.

Teaching Methods and Learning Hours

Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
Seminars 20 2 per week for 10 weeks in Michaelmas 1 Hour 20
School Visit 3 3 times during Michaelmas term 2 Hour 6
School Placement Project 6 1 half-day per week for 6 weeks in Epiphany 4 Hours 24
Preparation and Reading 150
Total 200

Summative Assessment

Component: Continual Assessment Component Weighting: 30%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Three assessments during Michaelmas 100%
Component: School visit file Component Weighting: 20%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
School visit file describing the student's school experience 100%
Component: School Project Report Component Weighting: 40%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Report on placement project in Epiphany term 3000 - 5000 words 100%
Component: Presentation Component Weighting: 10%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
Presentation on placement project 100%

Formative Assessment:

Weekly assignments in Michaelmas term.

Attendance at all activities marked with this symbol will be monitored. Students who fail to attend these activities, or to complete the summative or formative assessment specified above, will be subject to the procedures defined in the University's General Regulation V, and may be required to leave the University