Skip to main content
Do you know that many students who completed the IGCSE syllabus find IB Year 1 Math very difficult?

Parents and students often assume that the math syllabus for IGCSE will prepare them for what is to come in IB year 1, but this is absolutely not the case.

In reality, the IB assumes that students have an excellent mastery over skills and topics taught in the IGCSE. However, many students only have a basic level of competency over these skills, which is usually enough to get by in IGCSE but will be not be adequate for the IB. As a result, many students feel horribly unprepared when they start IB year 1.

Designed by Prep Zone Academy, the IB Math Head Start Program is a limited course designed to bridge this skill gap and prepare students for IB Math in year 1. The course seeks to firstly, ensure that students have at least a base level of competency. and then secondly, to bring them closer to the skill level that is needed for IB.

At Prep Zone, we have helped IB students from schools such as UWC, SJII, ACSI, CIS, GIIS, NPS, SAIS, and many more, brush up their skills over the summer. With extensive experience working with the local school’s syllabus, we will make sure that this course directly contributes to your academic success.

From 4:30 pm to 6:30 pm every Monday, our veteran math trainer will go over important math topics and concepts that are covered in the IB year 1 math syllabus. As part of the session, students will also receive additional practice and questions to establish a strong foundation for these topics.

Those who have just finished IB year 1 and wish to reinforce what they have learned are also welcome to take part in this program.

Register For The IB Math Head Start Program

Course Syllabus

The course is divided into 2 segments: the Refresher phase and the Main Syllabus phase.

Refresher Phase

During this phase, the trainer will review all topics that are important and transferable from IGCSE/Secondary School to IB AA HL Mathematics.

At Prep Zone, we have noticed that IB teachers usually assume students are familiar with these topics, and thus won’t re-teach them due to the lack of time. This results in students feeling lost when they are taught the same topics at the IB level.

As such, during this phase, we will teach these topics at 2 levels:

  1. Firstly, the topics will be taught at a level that is required for IGCSE.
  2. Secondly, the topics will be taught at a level that is slightly above the IGCSE level, and
    closer to IB standards for AA HL Math.

An example is given below. Both questions below are solved in exactly the same way but the IB question requires a much higher order of algebraic manipulation. Based on experience, many students find the jump from IGCSE to IB difficult because of a higher difficulty of algebra, as well as a non-calculator component of the exam.

Here are the topics that will be taught in the Refresher phase:

All Topics - (Click to expand)

  • Algebra 
    • Quadratic Equations
      • Factorization
      • Completing the Square
      • Graphing
      • Quadratic Formula
      • Discriminant
    • Simultaneous Equations
      • Linear Simultaneous Equations
      • Quadratic Simultaneous Equations
  • Mensuration and Trigonometry
    • Trigonometry
      • Special Angles
    • Mensuration
      • Triangular Mensuration (Sine and Cosine Rule)
      • Circular Mensuration (Arcs and Sectors)
  • Trigonometry Logarithms
    • Trigonometry
      • Simple Trigonometric Equations and Pythagorean Identities
    • Logarithms
      • Basic Logarithmic Rules
      • Change of Base

Main Syllabus Phase

During this phase, the trainer will review all topics from the IB syllabus.

While the order of topics might be different between schools, the first few topics will usually be the same. Our trainer will cover the topics one by one, in the order that’s best suit for the class.

Pure Math Topics - (Click to expand)

  • Sequences and Series
    • Arithmetic Progression
    • Geometric Progression
    • Summation Notation
    • Binomial Series
  • Exponents and Logarithms
    • Indices and Exponents
    • Surds
    • Logarithms
  • Functions
    • Linear Functions
    • Quadratic Functions
    • Cubic Functions
    • Rational Functions
    • Inverse Functions
    • Composite Functions
    • Transformation
    • Partial Fractions
    • Factor and Remainder Theorem
    • Sum and Product of Roots
  • Proofs
    • Mathematical Induction
    • Proof by Contradiction
  • Trigonometry
    • Mensuration
    • Double Angle Identities
    • Compound Angle Identities
    • Trigonometric Graphs
    • Inverse Trigonometric Functions
  • Complex Numbers
    • Forms of Complex Numbers
    • Roots and Equations of Complex Numbers
  • Vectors
    • Vector Algebra
    • Lines
    • Planes
    • Shapes and Volumes
  • Calculus
    • Limits and Continuity
    • Differentiation
    • Integration
    • Differential Equations
    • Kinematics
    • Maclaurin’s Series
    • L’Hopital Rule

Statistics - (Click to expand)

  • Permutations and Combinations
    • Counting Principles
    • Permutations and Combinations
  • Data Analysis
    • Measures of Central Tendency
    • Measures of Spread
    • Grouped Data
  • Linear Regression
    • Correlation
    • Linear Regression
  • Probability
    • Tree Diagrams
    • Venn Diagrams
  • Discrete Distributions
    • Discrete Random Variables
    • Binomial Distribution
  • Continuous Distributions
    • Continuous Random Variables
    • Normal Distribution

Course Details

Worksheets and lesson notes will be provided for all the topics taught. Chat to us today for a trial lesson.

  • Start Date: Weekly
  • Lesson Timing: Every Monday, 4:30PM – 6:30 PM
  • Cost: $70/session (billed monthly)

Trainer Profile

An experienced Mathematics trainer, who is extremely competent with the IB Mathematics syllabus. Straight As Dean’s List student in NUS. Obtained a perfect score in his IB (45/45), including a 7 in Higher Level Mathematics. Prior to joining Prep Zone, he had taught in Math Vision tuition centre. Experienced with 10,000 hours of teaching alone excluding countless hours of preparation work. Numerous success stories.

Our Success Stories

My daughter was stuck with her TOK draft and had no idea how to proceed. I checked with a number of tuition centers for help with TOK, but Prep Zone was the one who could get me a tutor at short notice. Her trainer Jessica was highly experienced and guided my daughter through her draft, essay, and presentation.

Mrs. OngParent

I have been a loyal client at PrepZone since my eldest went there for UCAT tutoring. In all, they have helped my 3 kids with UCAT, BMAT, SAT, ACT, IGCSE and IB. Not to mention the last-minute MMI interview preparation that we needed for med school which was fabulous and so well-organized! Do yourself a favor and get one of their big individual packages and ask them to split the hours between your kids – you can enjoy the lowest per-hour rate that way.

Mrs. NgParent

My son used to go to another tuition center but I soon realized he was spending more time with his friends there than studying. I initially was worried about the lack of group tutoring at PrepZone, but soon realized the 1-1 tutoring is more effective. The feedback that the teachers sent to me after each session was very helpful so I could keep track of his progress and motivate him at home.


Prep Zone really helped my daughter improve on her scores for IB Math and English Lang Lit. We started preparation early in Grade 11, and Prep Zone supported us all the way till the final IB exams. The tutors were really nice and helpful, and were also available to help my daughter after office hours if required. The feedback after every lesson was really helpful for me as a parent, since it allowed me to stay up to date as well on my daughter’s progress. She enjoyed the lessons very much, and their online lessons via Zoom were conducted very smoothly. I would really recommend Prep Zone to all students & parents!


I have been a student at Prep Zone since 2018, and they have helped me with my IGCSE exams and then my IB exams. Some of the explanations by the teachers here were better than my school teachers!


My elder daughter joined Prep Zone for SAT tutoring, and we decided to have a trial class for IB Math. We ended up using our leftover hours for IB, and though the May exams were cancelled due to COVID, I felt my daughter was improving and would have performed well on the exam. My son is now using my daughter’s remaining hours, and he loves his weekly tutoring for Psychology & Biology.

B. H.Parent

I had no personal life in IB year 2 and spent 4 days of the week at Prep Zone for SAT, IB and university applications haha. But now I am off to Columbia and it’s been worth it. Thank you Prep Zone!! And special thanks to Michelle, my English tutor there :))

A. S.Student

Went to Prep Zone for Physics, Psychology and Business lessons and they really helped me improve. Pro tip: check with your friends if they are going to Prep Zone as well after school and share a cab there, you’ll be surprised how many show up there 😉

R. T.Student

The great thing about Prep Zone’s IB course was that I could use the hours from my package for multiple subjects rather than getting new packages for each. This helped me during my mocks since I could come in with my doubts for all my HLs.

M. T.Student

I was initially a bit concerned about the price so went for the smallest package. My son loved his lessons and they were nice enough to allow me to move up to the higher package. A big bonus for me as a parent were their regular feedback emails after every session so I could keep track too.

S. B.Parent

I had an amazing tutor, patient, understanding, and flexible, able to find a simple way to explain the hardest questions. I would just like to say that without his help, I would not have improved as much as I did for my promotional exams. Because of his help, my Chemistry attained a 7 with 80 this time around, and my Math improved a startling 18 marks from 52 to 70. We may meet again next year, but I just wanted to ask that he continue helping students who want to learn, as with his patience and guidance there will surely be improvement.


I would like to sincerely thank my trainer for all his help and guidance during my chemistry internal assessment. I met my chemistry teacher a few days back and he told me that my IA was quite good. I got a 7 in chemistry, and I got a 21/24 for my chemistry internal assessment.
Thanks once again for all the guidance and help for the internal assessment!
I was able to pull up from a low grade IA to a much much better one.


The tutors at Prep Zone helped my son get from a 5 in Chemistry to a 7 on his final exams. We had started off with a few sessions to work on Chemical Bonding, but seeing my son’s progress in class, we moved to regular weekly sessions which really paid off! Highly recommend the IB course!



[form id=”IB_00_03_OW0416″]

By submitting this form, I agree to Prep Zone Academy’s Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.