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Maths Aptitude Test (MAT)/Physics Aptitude Test (PAT) Preparation Sessions

Mathematics and Physics teachers from Highgate lead preparation sessions for the Maths Aptitude Test (MAT) and Physics Aptitude Test (PAT) for pupils in nearby sixth forms.

Aims

The aims of the sessions are to give able pupils adequate teaching and practise for the MAT and PAT tests used for admission to some courses at top universities.

The identified need was that only 44% of maths teachers have a maths degree, and only 50% of science teachers in state schools hold a traditional science degree. The percentage of physics teachers with a physics degree is even lower than this. These teachers cannot adequately prepare pupils for the extremely challenging nature of these tests. Some schools are simply not very familiar with the MAT and PAT tests and as a result are inexperienced in preparing pupils for them.

The critical factors for success are methods of communication with students in partner schools and heads of department in partner schools. The availability of teachers who are capable of delivering these sessions and rooms to accommodate the pupils.

The immediate beneficiaries are the pupils who perform well in the tests and get into top universities as a result. In the wider community, the schools these pupils attend also benefit because they have pupils going on to some of the top universities in the UK because of their performance in these tests.

Highgate teachers remark on the benefit of covering this high-level content with a wider range of pupils than they are used to.

Resources

The project utilises one classroom, and worksheets, but no other resources.

It uses two members of teaching staff- one Maths teacher and one Physics teacher. They alternate weeks.

The financial contribution consists of the salary for the teachers for their time spent delivering the sessions.

Impact

The results the students get for the MAT or PAT tests. This will occur every year in the Autumn when the tests are actually sat. We regularly assess the outcomes of sixth form pupils with which we work, in the hope that many attend the most competitive courses at Russel Group universities.

Pupil Involvement

The pupils are in Years 12 and 13, so aged 16-18.

Frequency

This activity is ongoing, occurring on a weekly basis. This is going to continue for the foreseeable future, with new cohorts of Year 12 pupils each year.