Bridging Course

Monday 11th SEPTEMBER –Thursday 21st SEPTEMBER 2017

(No classes Saturday 16th/Sunday 17th September)


** Please click here for the Bridging Course Application Form **

The Mathematics Department at UCL is offering a Bridging course over 2 weeks in September, which aims to ease the transition between school and university mathematics.

1. General Information

Students are often quite surprised by the different demands placed on them by their degree course in Mathematics and the bridging course will introduce students to some of the ways of thinking and techniques that will be useful, as well as looking again at some A-level material in a more sophisticated way. The course would clearly be useful for students who need a boost to their mathematical confidence but it is also designed for good students who would like to become even better. The course gives students a head start in their studies. It is also a great way to make new friends and quickly settle into a new life at UCL, which is particularly useful for those students coming to London for the first time. In the past students have thoroughly enjoyed the course.

This course is available to any home/EU students and to any overseas students who, when they receive their visa, are able to enter the country and come to the university by the start date. 

2. Aims and material of course

The aim of this course is to bridge the gap between school and university mathematics. It is intended for students about to start a degree in Mathematics (single or combined honours), although other interested students are welcome to register.

3. Expected background

This year all students entering Mathematics degree programmes at UCL will have A*A*A at A-level, including Mathematics and Further Mathematics (or equivalent). So we expect all students to be pretty good at the type of calculational maths required at A-level.

Of course the study of calculus continues in your degree course and you will find the “Mathematical Methods” modules first a revision and then an extension of your A-level work.

4. University Mathematics is different!

However, university mathematics differs considerably from A-level, both in the style of teaching and in the greater demands made on the student’s ability to:

· understand (and construct) quite complex logical arguments and formal definitions;

· solve multi-stage problems;

· deal with increasing levels of abstraction.

The bridging course aims to introduce students to these features of university mathematics while also having another look at some of the mathematics familiar from A-level in this new context.

5. Topics covered in the bridging course

The topics covered are expected to include:

1. Formal proofs in various contexts; finite sums; induction; logic and quantifiers; limits; infinite series; prime numbers and unique factorization; functions; countability.

2. Revision and extension of A-level calculus: differentiation, integration, Taylor and Fourier series.

6. Morning lectures

The morning lectures (approx 10.30 – 1.00) will be for all the students in a large group. Students are encouraged to take notes in the lectures to practice this important aspect of studying mathematics at university. No previous knowledge other than standard A-level material is required – willingness to learn is the only pre-requisite.

7. Afternoon problem classes

The class will be split into small groups for the afternoon sessions (approx 2.00 – 4.00), during which students will work on the questions provided, which will be based on material from the morning lecture. Academic staff or post-graduate students will be available to give advice and help the students. The questions will have a wide range of difficulty so some questions should be possible for everybody, and everyone should find some material that provides a challenge.

8. Cost

The cost for all students is £100.00.

Instructions on how to make payment for the course will be emailed to applicants once their completed application form has been received and accepted.

9. Accommodation

Students will need to arrange their own accommodation for the duration of this course.  There may be rooms available in university student residences - see links below:

UCL Student Residences: University Rooms:

If you have applied for UCL accommodation for your first year of study, you can request early entry to be resident for the Bridging Course in your halls of residence by contacting the accommodation office ( . If you have not applied for UCL accommodation you will have to make your own arrangements for accommodation during the two weeks.

10. Further Details

If you require further details or would like to apply please contact:-  Dr Mark Roberts or Ms Kate Fraser, Department of Mathematics, University College London, Gower Street, London  WC1E 6BT.