Curriculum and Assessment

The Royal Society Advisory Committee on Mathematics Education (ACME) has developed four curriculum Contact Groups spanning different phases of education:

  • Early years and primary
  • GCSE and key stage 3
  • A levels
  • Post-16 mathematics pathways

These Contact Groups have the dual role of identifying and responding to current mathematics education policy issues as well as preparing for a future curriculum review.

The Contact Groups are a joint venture between the Royal Society, Royal Statistical Society, London Mathematical Society and the Institute for Mathematics and its Applications. They have been created with the aim of developing a more cohesive voice of the mathematics community in the policy arena.

Previous RS ACME work in this area:

  • Assessment - In 2016, the Society published Problem solving in mathematics: realising the vision through better assessment (PDF). It considers the assessment of problem solving in public tests and examinations across all key stages of mathematical development and describes the desirable characteristics of questions used to assess problem solving. It also sets out actions for policymakers, awarding organisations and the mathematics community to ensure that improvements in the quantity and quality of problem solving in mathematics tests and assessments are realised over time.
  • Curriculum - In 2014, the Royal Society and the Royal Statistical Society worked together on a project looking at the statistical content and assessment of a selection of A Level qualifications. The aim of the project was to investigate how statistics was embedded within these qualifications and to identify further steps to ensure that students gain statistical literacy as they move into higher education and employment. The report, Embedding Statistics at A level (PDF) was published in 2015.
  • Curriculum - In 2011, the Society published a report called Mathematical Needs (PDF) which analysed the mathematical content of a range of university courses and found that there was a marked discrepancy between the number of courses requiring mathematical skills beyond GCSE and the number of people with these skills that the UK is producing.