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STEP Support Programme

This free online STEP Support Programme is offered by the University of Cambridge to help university applicants develop their advanced mathematical problem-solving skills and prepare for STEP mathematics exams.

What is STEP?

STEP is an additional mathematics examination, taken at the end of Year 13, which forms part of conditional offers to applicants for mathematics and some related degrees at Cambridge and some other universities.

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

STEP Support Programme - free online resources

The STEP Support programme is designed to help university applicants develop their advanced problem-solving skills and prepare for sitting STEP Mathematics examinations. The programme is developed by the Faculty of Mathematics and NRICH. It consists of online modules for individual additional study, along with hints and full solutions.

The resources are free and open to everyone.

The Foundation modules provide a structured introduction to solving STEP problems. The modules also introduce mathematical ideas beyond the A-level syllabus and include supportive self evaluation materials. They are designed to be studied weekly over about 6 months. If you are planning to take STEP 2 and 3 at the end of Year 13, we recommend you start studying the Foundation modules in Year 12. They are also useful for Year 13 students who want to study Mathematics at university but who are not planning to sit STEP papers.

The STEP 2 and STEP 3 modules assume that you have already worked through the foundation modules. We recommend that you start these in Year 13 (ideally you would start working on the STEP 2 modules soon after the beginning of Year 13, and the STEP 3 modules around January of Year 13).

If you have any questions about the assignments, or STEP in general, or feedback about our resources you can email us at, or contact us via twitter @stepsupportcam.

Please see here for more detailed advice on how to use the STEP Support Programme.

Additional supporting material

These resources complement the STEP Support Programme and are designed to help you develop your advanced problem solving skills and mathematical thinking.

  • STEP questions with solutions at Underground Mathematics

    The Underground Mathematics website offers free resources to support the teaching of A level mathematics. The website includes selected past STEP questions with fully worked solutions and explanations.

  • Advanced Problems in Mathematics book

    A book by Dr Stephen Siklos, analysing selected STEP questions. Each question is followed by comments and a full solution directing the reader’s attention to key points and the methodology required to address advanced mathematical problems critically and independently. The book can be downloaded as a free pdf; it can also be viewed online or bought as a paperback at cost price (no profits, no royalties).

  • The STEP Support Programme is developed by NRICH, part of the University of Cambridge's Millennium Mathematics Project -, on behalf of the Faculty of Mathematics. (c) University of Cambridge. Email us:

    Useful Links

    Underground Mathematics: Selected worked STEP questions

    STEP Question database

    University of Cambridge Mathematics Faculty: What do we look for?

    University of Cambridge Mathematics Faculty: Information about STEP

    University of Cambridge Admissions Office: Undergraduate course information for Mathematics

    Stephen Siklos' "Advanced Problems in Mathematics" book (external link)

    MEI: Worked solutions to STEP questions (external link)

    OCR: Exam board information about STEP (external link)

    AMSP (Advanced Maths Support programme): Support for University Admission Tests (external link)