We have launched a new online STEP Support programme to help potential university applicants develop their advanced problem-solving skills and prepare for sitting STEP Mathematics examinations. The programme includes online modules for individual additional study and an online discussion forum. The STEP Support resources are designed to help students at schools which cannot offer much preparation for STEP, and are freely available online.

STEP is an additional mathematics examination, taken at the end of Y13, which forms part of conditional offers to applicants for mathematics and some related degrees at Cambridge and a number of other universities.

STEP is designed to test candidates on questions that are similar in style to undergraduate mathematics. Although demanding, preparing for STEP gives applicants a chance to engage with interesting, challenging mathematics, to stretch themselves and to develop the mathematical reasoning, independence and confidence needed in a Cambridge undergraduate mathematics degree.

Developed by the Faculty of Mathematics and NRICH, each STEP Support module assignment starts with some warm-up exercises, followed by preparatory work leading to a STEP question. Supportive self-evaluation and development material will be published after each assignment, to help students assess progress and identify areas that need more work.

The programme also includes an online discussion forum where students can ask for help and hints if stuck, mentored by Cambridge University students who’ve taken STEP themselves and NRICH staff.

The new STEP Support programme builds on a pilot STEP Correspondence Course trialled in 2015/16, led by Dr Stephen Siklos, and forms part of the University of Cambridge's active widening participation programme.

The STEP Support resources are free and open to everyone - find them at maths.org/STEP.