“The essence of Mathematics is not to make simple things complicated, but to make complicated things simple.” – S. Gudder

Mr J. O’Neill  (Head of Department)

Miss M. Black
Mrs M. McCloskey
Mrs P. Byrne
Mr K. Gallagher
Miss N. McAvoy
Mrs C. O’Neill
Mrs E. Carey

The Mathematics Department is comprised of a dedicated and caring team of teachers who actively promote the enjoyment of Mathematics. As a department we acknowledge each individual student’s ability and strive to ensure each student fulfils his/her potential. We aim to stimulate, encourage and maintain student’s interest in Mathematics through a variety of teaching and learning strategies. We strive to ensure the challenge and enjoyment of Mathematics is apparent in classroom teaching. Numeracy, Literacy and ICT through research projects are an integral part of the delivery of Mathematics and students are given opportunities which help in the development of these skills. Students are encouraged to acknowledge and appreciate the relevance of Mathematics across the curriculum and in everyday life; and are supported in developing the necessary skills.

The Mathematics Department at St Catherine’s College encourages pupils to develop:

•    a positive attitude towards mathematics, including confidence, enjoyment and perseverance;
•    a feel for numbers, and understand the significance of results obtained;
•    confidence in the use of number, algebra, shape, space and measurement, and handling data
•    an ability to think and communicate mathematically- precisely, logically and creatively;
•    a willingness to work both independently and co-operatively;
•    the ability to be able to apply mathematics to other areas of the curriculum;
•    the ability to solve problems, present solutions, and interpret results;

“Number rules the Universe.”

Pythagoras  560-480 B.C.


Years 8, 9 and 10 students follow a rich and varied programme in Mathematics in line with the Revised Curriculum for Northern Ireland.  In Key Stage 3, pupils are banded on the basis of results obtained in English and Mathematics tests taken at the end of their primary school career. In the average band, pupils are set for Mathematics in order to cater for the broad range of mathematical abilities, aptitudes and levels of attainment, which exist within this band.

Pupils with special educational needs:

Pupils who experience difficulty with certain aspects of mathematics will receive extra help through the peer-tutoring scheme operated by year 13 students. This scheme has proved very successful over the years and the pupils being helped gain a new sense of achievement and confidence in the subject.

Mid way through Year 10 pupils are assessed and the results of these tests are used to place the pupils in Key Stage 4 to take a GCSE course in Mathematics at a suitable tier Higher with Additional Mathematics, Higher or Foundation.

Gifted and talented in KS3:

Some KS3 students who have displayed excellence in maths are entered for GCSE Mathematics in Year 9 or Year 10.


GCSE Mathematics students follow the CCEA Modular course. Pupils are set for Mathematics in, with one group of pupils (approximately 30) following modules T4 and T6 along with Additional Mathematics, 3 groups take Higher Tier Mathematics either T4 and T6 or T3 and T6 and all other groups follow the Foundation course of taking modules T2 and T5.



Mathematics is a very popular and successful A-level subject with currently 41 students studying A-level Mathematics.  The department follows the CCEA course giving students the option of completing their A-level after either one and a half or 2 years study.  Some students in their Upper Sixth year take on AS Further Mathematics

Extra Curricular activities in the Mathematics Department

The Mathematics Department frequently holds classes after school to support student’s learning. There is also an opportunity for students to participate in the UK Mathematics Challenges.  Every Wednesday the Times tables club meets and looks at ways to learn the Times tables through games and quizzes.

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