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Underground Mathematics professional development (2014-2018)

The University of Cambridge’s Underground Mathematics project aimed to make studying A level Mathematics a rich and stimulating experience, enabling all students to explore the connections that underpin mathematics.


Underground Mathematics is a collection of rich resources for teaching and learning A level Mathematics and Further Mathematics.


The University of Cambridge commissioned MEI to design and deliver an extensive programme of professional development to support and encourage the use of the Underground Mathematics resources in line with their design intentions.


Over the four years of the project, MEI worked in partnership with the Underground Mathematics team to develop a range of courses that focused on making effective use of the resources. In 2017 the course was adapted to support the overarching themes in the new mathematics A level: proof, problem solving and modelling. These courses were delivered at 50 locations throughout England.


Over 2000 teachers and trainees attended the courses. Here are some of the responses received to the question ‘What has made the greatest impression on you during the course?’:

“The workshop led me to thinking that as a teacher we can actually teach mathematics in a relational way rather than by rote learning.”

“The philosophical debate about what A level teaching should look like.”

“Firstly, the depth and quality of resources. A close second, the enthusiasm of, and enjoyment in, the delivery of the session.”

“The way in which quality resources can be adapted and developed to suit the needs of different groups.”