Unit 3 Higher: Geometry and Algebra

Due to the broad range of content in this unit, some of which is covered in Unit 1 and 2, we advise entering students for Unit 3 after the other units.

There are fundamental number skills that students need to know and understand to address the content of this unit. The number work will not be tested in isolation, but will be in contexts that tie in with the other areas of the unit content. The specification outlines the skills required for this unit as:

  • Working with numbers and the number system
  • Fractions, decimals and percentages
  • Ratio and proportion
  • The language of algebra
  • Expressions and equations
  • Sequences, functions and graphs
  • Properties of angles and shapes
  • Geometrical reasoning and calculation
  • Measures and construction
  • Mensuration
  • Vectors.

To approach these as teaching topics we have provided guidance on:

Half of the marks in this unit are awarded for straightforward AO1 questions and half for problem solving and process skills (AO2 and AO3). This is a greater weighting than Unit 2 (where questions are more straightforward) but less than Unit 1 (which is more context driven). The split of assessment objectives for this unit matches the breakdown of the specification as a whole.

In areas where content is common across units, teachers are advised to look closely at the Assessment Guidance for details of where specific content will be assessed. For example, N6.12 which refers to plotting graphs appears in both Unit 2 and Unit 3, but assessment of distance-time graphs will only appear in Unit 2. Further, the algebraic content is split between Unit 2 and Unit 3 so that it can be assessed with and without use of a calculator.