PremiumTim H. A Level Maths tutor, Uni Admissions Test .MAT. tutor

Tim H.

Currently unavailable: for new students

Degree: Mathematics (Masters) - Oxford, Hertford College University

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About me

About me:

I am a PhD student at Aix-Marseille University studying mathematics, having just finished my masters degree at Oxford.

All through my education I've been lucky enough to have some of the best teachers, and it's entirely thanks to them that I now have whatever understanding of maths I possess. Because of this, I know that having a teacher who wants their student to get to know, and eventually love, their subject leads to students doing better because they genuinely want to.

Sadly, with the way exams work, there is not much focus on understanding maths, but instead on learning things by heart and just 'doing' without knowing why. And although one of the main tricks to doing well in exams is to know what the examiners want to see, if you have a solid grounding in the fundamentals of the topics then you will be able to work out whatever they throw at you, even if you panic during an exam and forget things that you do really know (and this happens to everyone at some point!).

I worked as an A Level and GCSE maths supply teacher for a while, so I've been brought up to date with current exam syllabuses and have experience teaching the topics.

The tutorials

Although you will decide what we cover, I strongly believe that in most subjects, and especially in maths, understanding is essential. Because of this, it's most likely that sessions will be split: the first half spent going over getting to grips with the fundamentals, and the second half going through some examples. Obviously this is very flexible though, and it depends on how you understand the topic, and with which parts you're struggling the most.

It's also a good idea to learn how to do well at exams, which is almost an extra skill in itself. Once you've got some basic grasp of a topic, it's never too early to start looking at exam questions. So some tutorials, after covering a few topics, might focus entirely on going through some selected questions.

Alternatively, if you are looking for more specific tutoring then that can also be provided. I will try my hardest to teach in whichever way best suits the person trying to learn.

I am happy to simply do homework help, to aid those trying to self-teach, or even to tutor undergraduates (though this is dependent on the subject: webmail me if this is something that you are looking for, and even if I can't tutor it then I should be able to point you in the right direction for help).

If it would help, I am also happy to mark, and even set, homework or past papers.

Get in touch!

If you have any questions then send me a webmail, and please do book a meet-the-tutor session if you would like to know more, or to talk to me face-to-face rather than via email.

Being a student still means that my free time is reasonably flexible, so please do get in touch if you have a specific time in mind and I will do my best to be free for it!

I hope to hear from you!

Subjects offered

Maths A Level £20 /hr
.MAT. Uni Admissions Test £25 /hr


Further MathsA-levelA2A*
MathematicsDegree (Masters)First
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General Availability

Currently unavailable: for new students

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Questions Tim has answered

The inequality x^4 < 8x^2 + 9 is satisfied precisely when...

This is a multiple choice question, with possible answers: (a) -3 < x <  3; (b)  0 < x <  4; (c)  1 < x <  3; (d) -1 < x <  9; (e) -3 < x < -1. Let's start by rearranging the inequality to get x^4 - 8x^2 - 9 < 0. Now, we notice that x^4 = (x^2)^2, and so what we have on the left-hand si...

This is a multiple choice question, with possible answers:

(a) -3 < x <  3;

(b)  0 < x <  4;

(c)  1 < x <  3;

(d) -1 < x <  9;

(e) -3 < x < -1.

Let's start by rearranging the inequality to get

x^4 - 8x^2 - 9 < 0.

Now, we notice that x^4 = (x^2)^2, and so what we have on the left-hand side of our inequality above is really a quadratic equation in x^2:

(x^2)^2 - 8x^2 - 9 < 0.

So we can factor this like a normal quadratic: look for two numbers that add to make -8 and multiply to make -9. It turns out that -9 and +1 work, then our inequality is simply

(x^2 - 9)(x^2 + 1) < 0.

If we multiply two numbers together, the only way for the product to be negative (less than zero) is for one of the numbers to be negative and the other positive. But x^2 is positive no matter what value x takes, and so (x^2 + 1) is definitely going to be positive, for all values of x.

So we have to have (x^2 - 9) negative:

x^2 - 9 < 0.

And so

x^2 < 9,


-3 < x < 3,

i.e. the answer is (a).

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2 years ago

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