Focus on Maths:

downtownbeeMechanics

Nov 18, 2013 (3 years and 6 months ago)

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Focus on Maths:

f
rom school to work

Professor Sir Peter Gregson

President and Vice
-
Chancellor,
Queen’s University Belfast

Professor Ellen Douglas
-
Cowie

Pro
-
Vice
-
Chancellor for
Education and Students


Queen’s University Belfast

Focus on
Maths
: from school to work

Jeremy Fitch, Invest NI

QUB,
Whitla

Hall

Monday 12 November 2012

Why is maths important

to the NI economy?


What is happening in the economy?



Where will the employment opportunities be?

Problem...


We are over reliant on our public sector



The level of subvention is unsustainable



We must learn to stand on our own feet






30
-
35% employees in the public sector



60
-
70% of our GVA is public sector reliant


NI relies on huge subvention from the UK

(estimated as high as £9bn

/£5,000 per person)

Programme

for Government Priority No 1:

Growing the Economy

Increase Exports

Invest in

Innovation & R&D

Invest in Skills

Increase Job Numbers

and Job Quality

What can we export?



-

What we make (manufacturing/engineering)


-

What we know (
tradeable

services)

Maths plays a fundamental part

in engineering, in manufacturing,

in software development and

in financial services.



These are key sectors for the
future of the NI economy


DONG to locate their logistics hub for the
Irish Sea in Belfast



£50m investment by Belfast Harbour to
create a new pier and infrastructure



Construction well underway



Belfast is the only port in the UK currently
constructing a hub



Outside of London, Belfast is the UK's
most attractive city

for foreign direct
investment.

(Source: Ernst & Young 2010)



Belfast is already established as one of the
top 10 destination cities
for financial
services technologies investments in the
world.
(Source: OCO Consulting 2010)




Some of our Investors

A supply of skilled people is
consistently cited as the most
important reason for
international investment in NI

Our education system has
been pivotal in delivering the
skills that have secured these
investments

Jobs

Areas

501

IT Development, FX securities/settlement,

Legal & Compliance

400

FS Software Development

317

HR, Finance, Legal

465

IT Development, Service Delivery, Project Management,

Marketing

90

FS IT Development, Project Management

242

R&D

Product Development, Sales, Marketing

45

HR Consulting, Risk and Actuarial


Pensions management

104

IT Development, Product Development, Engineering

130

R & D Product Development, Engineering

164

Fund Administration


100

FS Software

Development & Support

150

Software Engineering,

R & D Product Development

55

Software Development & Support

50

IT FS Development, Technology

& Support

50

Software Development

Recent Projects

Where will future opportunities be in NI?


Advanced Materials and Engineering

(aerospace, electrical, electronics, automotive,
renewables
)


Financial & Business Services
(incl. Technology)


Telecoms & ICT


Life & Health Sciences


Creative Industries


Agrifood

Challenges


Raise awareness/change perceptions



Respond to change



Align interests



Raise ambition








Mr John Healy

IT Senior Group Manager

Citi

Focus on Maths: from school to work


The challenge for the universities

Professor Tom Millar

Dean, Faculty of Engineering and
Physical Sciences

Queen’s University Belfast

The Deficit Issue


Primary Deficit



-

90% of those who do not achieve the expected level in
mathematics at age 11 do not achieve GCSE Grade C or
higher
(Vordeman Report 2011
)


Secondary Deficit



-

Average 15 year old in UK is 2 years behind the
average 15 year old in Shanghai
(Vordeman Report 2011)



-

Less than 20% of UK students study any mathematics
post
-
16



-

In 18/24 countries studied, it is over 50%, in 14/24 over
80% and in 8/24 it is 100%
(Nuffield Foundation Report
2010)

The Deficit Issue


University Deficit

-
Many non
-
science subjects do not require mathematics
explicitly but contain significant mathematical or statistical
content
(Nuffield Foundation Report 2012)

-
Each year 330,000 students entering HE would benefit
from studying some mathematics (including statistics)
beyond GCSE, but fewer than 125,000 have done so
(ACME Report 2011)

-
Failure to cope with mathematics is a key contributing
factor to low Year 1 progression is some STEM subjects
(National Audit Office 2007)


University Challenges


Not enough students study mathematics beyond GCSE


some STEM subjects
do not require AS or A
-
level mathematics. Greater numbers taking mathematics
would provide greater numbers of students able to take degrees directly relevant
to the economy


In some STEM subjects there is therefore a very wide range of ability, from those
with A
-
level Further Mathematics to those who haven’t studied mathematics for 2
years


how does one teach effectively and efficiently across this range?


Modular choices at A
-
level result in key areas of mathematics being ‘missed’


students entering Pharmacy, Medicine,
Psychology may have
studied mechanics
but not statistics, and vice versa for students entering Mechanical Engineering.


University Challenges


There is a skills shortage


algebraic manipulation, numeracy, abstract
thinking, problem solving


students have ‘surface’ learning, using
formulae to produce answers to pass exams but not the ‘deep’ learning
to understand how formulae are derived and to solve problems



How does the University organise its timetable and mathematics support
in order to produce numerate, mathematically literate graduates ready
for the world of work? (Only about 150 out of our annual intake of
around 2500 students, who need some experience of
post
-
GSCE
mathematics
, are here for the primary purpose of studying mathematics)

Wellington College Belfast

Mathematics Department

Focus on Maths: From School to Work


Challenges from a School Perspective






Ian
Cantley


Wellington College Belfast

Mathematics Department


Introduction



High expectations



Inspiration and motivation



Good traditional teaching



Leadership

Ms Emma Shorten

Ulster Bank

Plenary Session




1.
Desirability
of maths as a subject and a skill


Please
explore this from the perspective of the
constituencies around the table (employers, maths teachers,
University staff and others).


2.
Constraints
-



Please
explore the constraints that are faced in delivering
increased numbers of A level students appropriately
educated in maths. These may include issues relating to
capacity, resources, the curriculum and testing methods.