Mathematics National 4

The National 4 Mathematics Course builds on the principles and practice and experiences and outcomes of mathematics and numeracy.

Purpose and Aims of the Course

This Course will develop skills for further learning, as well as skills for life and work.

Learners will acquire and apply operational skills necessary for developing mathematical ideas through symbolic representation and diagrams. They will select and apply mathematical techniques and will develop their understanding of the interdependencies within mathematics. Learners will develop mathematical reasoning skills and will gain experience in making informed decisions.

The Course includes the freestanding Unit in Numeracy at SCQF level 4.

Course Structure and Conditions of Award

To achieve the National 4 Mathematics Course, learners must pass all of the required Units, including the Added Value Unit. The required Units are detailed below.

National 4 Courses are not graded.


The general aim of this Unit is to develop learners’ numerical and information handling skills to solve straightforward, real-life problems involving number, money, time and measurement. As learners tackle real-life problems, they will decide what numeracy skills to use and how to apply these skills to an appropriate level of accuracy. Learners will also interpret graphical data and use their knowledge and understanding of probability to identify solutions to straightforward real-life problems involving money, time and measurement. Learners will use their solutions to make and explain decisions.


The general aim of this Unit is to develop skills linked to straightforward mathematical relationships. These include solving equations, understanding graphs and working with trigonometric ratios. The Outcomes cover aspects of algebra, geometry, trigonometry, statistics and reasoning.

Expressions and Formulae

The general aim of this Unit is to develop skills linked to straightforward mathematical expressions and formulae. These include the manipulation of abstract terms, the simplification of expressions and the evaluation of formulae. The Outcomes cover aspects of algebra, geometry, statistics and reasoning.

Mathematics Test (Added Value)

This is the Added Value Unit of the National 4 Mathematics Course. The general aim of this Unit is to enable the learner to provide evidence of added value for the National 4 Mathematics Course through the successful completion of a test which will allow the learner to demonstrate breadth and challenge.


On successful completion of this Course, the learner could progress to:

National 5 Mathematics, National 5 Applications of Mathematics, National 5 Numeracy Unit only