Sjoe, what a journey! 

I finished my Masters’ degree in Pure Maths last year, but how did I decide to embark on that crazy adventure and what helped me get to where I am today?

It certainly didn’t start when I got to primary school, that’s for sure. I had terrible reports every term- “Emily just can’t do arithmetic”. 

My Maths journey in high school

However,  when I got to high school things changed. I enjoyed my Maths classes and the way it made me think (I finally knew what 1+1 was). When I had the choice to do AP Maths in Grade 10, I went for it! It was super challenging, no doubt, but it really opened my eyes to what all Maths could be. AP Maths expanded my mind and stretched my mathematical abilities. It was because of AP Maths that I discovered my love for the subject. 

How AP Maths helped me in university

So, I went onto university and had to do first-year mathematics. It was the feared course, where students stood by “the 1-year course is as difficult as 2 years”-that’s how difficult it is seen to be. I was nervous, I had no idea what to expect. But, AP Maths came to the rescue-my solid foundations had been cemented with this subject and I was able to get through it, no problem. Not only did this give me great results, but it also gave me the confidence to continue with Maths throughout my university career. The ball was rolling, and I was rolling with it. Now I sit here with a Masters’ degree and I can really owe it to AP Maths!

But AP Maths isn’t just for the “smart kids”, no, it’s for anyone who has an interest in Maths and wants to better themselves in their mathematical abilities. This subject has proven to bring learner’s Core Maths marks up, no matter how they do in AP Maths. It’s the way that it makes you think that’s so important. 

Back in my day (really, I’m not that old, I promise), AP Maths was called Ad Maths and it was counted as an additional subject on my Matric certificate. This meant that my mark influenced my Matric average. 

Did you know that AP Maths won’t affect your final results?

Since then, they realised that this might not be the fairest, so they made AP Maths an IEB certificate. This means that it’s separate from your Matric results, which really lessens the stress of taking an additional subject. If you don’t do as well as you had hoped, it’s definitely not a train smash, but if you aced your AP Maths final exam, then that could really benefit you when applying to tertiary institutions. Also, the IEB AP Maths certificate is internationally recognised, so you can finally study Mathematical surfing in Hawaii 😉 

But for reals, it’s a great subject and it’s not as daunting as you may think. I would definitely recommend giving it a bash. Worst case scenario? You just know a little bit more than when you started.

Did you know?
Advantage Learn offers AP Maths in the form of an online course. You could start your own AP Maths jouney from the beginning of 2020.

To learn more about our advanced programme or AP subjects, click here.

This article was originally published on 05 Oct 2020

About the author
Emily Rivett-Carnac

I am an AP Maths, NBT and Maths Academy teacher for I enjoy teaching mathematics and have a passion for making daunting concepts approachable through my teaching.

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