Mathematics at the ESS
The objective of the first year of the secondary school is to consolidate previous knowledge acquired during the primary school cycle. The second year helps in reinforcing the work already tackled in the first year while developing new skills and knowledge needed in mathematics, science and social science. The main topics of the third year program are an extension of the second year program.
At the end of year 3, students have to choose between two option courses: Elementary Level (4 period course per week) and Standard Level (6 period course per week). The objective of both courses in year 4 and year 5 is to build on basic mathematical knowledge and skills. The expectation of the Standard Level course is higher than the one of the Elementary Level course in which basic and familiar mathematical concepts are being dealt with.
From year 4, for all courses, the students have to use a technological tool (calculator) in accordance to the program of European Schools.
In the years 6 and 7, the 3 period course and 5 period course are preceded by the 4 period course and 6 period course respectively.
The objective of the Elementary Level course is different from a classical mathematics lesson. The student should be able to master extended concepts (in analysis, probability or statistics) without necessarily being an expert in calculations as they can use their calculators for calculations of higher level of difficulty. This course helps to understand the surrounding scientific and technological world without putting too much emphasis on theoretical aspects of mathematics.
In the Standard Level course, the student is meant to discover, with or without technological tool, notions in sequences, complex numbers, analysis, geometry and probability. This course is designed for students who need mathematics for their higher studies (medicine, economics, science etc) and who would benefit from a solid foundation and good knowledge of mathematics.
Students can opt for the Further level course only if they have taken 5 period course in years 6 and 7. This course provides an extensive knowledge of mathematics where it plays a significant and fundamental role (pure or applied mathematics, scientific courses, engineering degree) and which will be an asset for higher studies.
For the Baccalaureate Examination, students who opt for the 3 period course and 5 period course have only written examination; and students who opt for the Further Level course have only oral examination.
Some useful links:
- Diagram showing the structure of studies in Mathematics in the secondary level of the European Schools
- Career guidance and orientation for pupils in Year 3
- Career guidance and orientation for pupils in Year 5
- Other helpful information concerning Mathematics including the programmes for the European Schools