Mathematics reading list
We advise you to read the Mathematics page thoroughly. For reading and preparation advice, you should find the following sections particularly useful:
For offer holders
Preparing for STEP examinations
Many Mathematics offers include particular grades in STEP. We hope that the following information will help you to prepare:
- You can find the Examiners' reports for last year and the specification for papers on the Cambridge Assessment website. If you have any difficulty in obtaining past papers please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- The Mathematics Faculty has its own page about STEP.
- The booklet by Stephen Siklos is particularly useful. You might also benefit by looking at some of the other resources on his website, including the past papers.
- The NRICH website has excellent resources. See in particular information about 'rich' tasks, the STEP advice, and the prepare for university section.
- The Further Mathematics Network can offer support for both AEA and STEP preparation.
Further preparation for the course
The three documents below are updated each year in late July. You will find the date at the bottom of the coversheet.
- Mathematics workbook - it is essential that you work through this book in the summer before you start at King's.
- Guide to the Mathematical Tripos
- Courses in Part 1A
The King's Maths Perspectives, written by current undergraduate mathematicians, include useful discussion of STEP, the transition from school to Cambridge maths, and what to expect on the course.
The following books are recommended:
- M R Spiegel, Vector Analysis and an Introduction to Tensor Analysis, Schaum – Chapters 1 to 4 are essential (except for the parts marked as “hard”) but read as much as you can.
- R P Feyman, Lectures in Physics – Volume 1 Addison-Wesley, Chapters 1 – 17 and 21 – 25. This is an excellent introduction to the physics side in mathematics. It is especially important if you have not studied physics at school. (Volume II chapters 1 – 8, 12 – 18 and 20 are also interesting and useful).
- M Spivak, Calculus, Benjaminc – A good introduction which is aimed slightly above A level and concentrates on techniques.
- R P Burn: Numbers and Functionsc, Cambridge University Press – An alternative which concentrates on ideas.
- D Smart, Linear Algebra and Geometryc, Cambridge University Press – Provides a good introduction to the algebra and geometry course as well as later material.
- T W Körner, The Pleasures of Counting, Cambridge University Press – This gives an excellent but relaxed approach to rigorous mathematics.
- Please consult the Faculty of Mathematics website, which includes a reading list.
- Mathematics at King's
- Archimedeans Society website and Freshers' Guide