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The mathematics examinations faced by school leavers in the Republic of Ireland

This Friday, close to 13,000 students in the Republic of Ireland are set to take higher level maths in the Leaving Certificate, the state exams for 17-18 year old school leavers. That’s the highest number for two decades, and a 25% increase on last year’s all-time low of 10,400 who registered to sit the higher level exams. Typically, only about 80% of those show up for the higher level paper on the day–last year just 8,200 did–the rest playing safe and switching at the last minute to the ordinary level exams.

In 2011, a little over 55,000 Irish students overall, in a country with a population of 4.6 million, sat the Leaving Certificate in their final days of secondary education. This year, just under 54,000 school leavers are taking the Leaving, as it’s known. I hope they’ve studied hard, and wish them every success!

Eric Schmidt wants Britain to want to be the best at maths


Aperiodical Round Up – follow Brits and draw Rubik’s cube cartoon, says the most useless law in the solar system

Hello. It’s been a while since the last Aperiodical. That’s exactly how long it takes me to prepare and write each issue, so here we are.

“Here” is not where it used to be, so I should explain — The Aperiodical is now the name of a big maths conblogerate, of which these untimely collections of miscellanea occupy a small corner. The first four editions of the Internet Maths Aperiodical are still available on, and will be for as long as Samuel wants them there.

So, on with the interesting maths links and so on!