One of the learning aids you must consider while preparing for A level exams is an A level calculator.

An A level calculator is not just a tool but a learning aid that enhances your learning process and makes it easier to streamline complex questions.

You must be certain that your chosen calculator is reliable and can attempt complex calculations, saving you time during the exam.

For A level maths and further maths exams, a reliable a-level calculator helps you focus on understanding concepts rather than getting bogged down in manual calculations.

This article explains why you need an A-level calculator, features to consider before selecting one, and the best A level calculators for maths.

## Table of contents

## Why Choosing the Right Calculator Matters

It’s best not to struggle with your calculator in the exam hall. And it’s also not ideal to discover that the calculator you hastily purchased cannot solve most questions during your A level exams.

Choosing the right calculator is important because A-Level Maths and Further Maths require students to solve intricate equations, manipulate matrices, and perform advanced statistical analyses.

A calculator that falls short in functionality and ease of use can hinder a student’s progress, leading to frustration and lost time during exams.

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## Features to Look for in an A-Level Calculator

While numerous calculators are in the market, not all are suitable for the A level maths or further maths exams.

While choosing an A level calculator for your A level math exams, you should look out for the following features:

### #1. **Advanced Functions and Features**

When hunting for the best A-Level calculator, prioritize those with a wide range of advanced functions.

Look for features such as complex number calculations, matrix operations, equation solving, and calculus capabilities.

These functions will prove invaluable in tackling the challenging problems that A-Level Maths presents.

### #2. **User-Friendly Interface**

While advanced functions are crucial, a user-friendly interface is equally essential.

A calculator that is intuitive to navigate will save you time during exams and prevent unnecessary errors.

Clear labeling of buttons, a responsive screen, and logical menu layouts are factors to consider.

### #3. **Approved Exam Use**

Check if the calculator is approved for use in exams. Some models are not allowed due to their ability to store notes or programs, which could be considered cheating.

Ensure the calculator you choose adheres to the guidelines set by your examination board.

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### #4. Graphing Capabilities

Graphing calculators are indispensable for visualizing complex functions and data sets.

The ability to graph equations and analyze their behavior helps students grasp mathematical concepts more intuitively.

### #5. CAS (Computer Algebra System)

A CAS is a game-changer for advanced mathematics. It can manipulate algebraic expressions, perform symbolic calculations, and solve equations symbolically.

While not always allowed in exams, having a CAS can greatly assist in understanding complex mathematical relationships.

Read Also:What Are GCSE Mock Exams? Your Ultimate Guide for GCSE and A-Level

## What is the Best A-Level Calculator for A Level Maths

Selecting the right calculator depends on your specific needs, preferences, and familiarity with the interface.

Consider your mathematical strengths and weaknesses before making a decision.

### #1. **Texas Instruments TI-84 Plus CE**

The TI-84 Plus CE calculator with graphing capabilities measures 7.5 inches in size.

This maths A level calculator offers functions like graphing, statistical analysis, and even programming capabilities.

Its color display and ergonomic design make it a popular choice among students.

### #2. Casio fx-991 CW

The** **Casio fx-991 CW is the upgraded version of the Casio fx-991 EX (Casio’s most advanced scientific calculator).

It contains additional features, which include a high-definition display and improved menu navigation.

This A level Maths calculator is approved for Key stages 3, 4, and 5, and comes highly recommended for Advanced GCSE, A/AS level.

Currently selling for £38.49, it is allowed in every UK exam where a calculator can be used.

The large Natural Textbook Display shows mathematical expressions like roots and fractions as they appear in your textbooks. This increases comprehension because results are easier to understand.

### #3. Casio fx-CG50

The fx-CG50 is an advanced graphic calculator approved by exam boards. Its functionality perfectly fits GCSE to A-level Maths and Further Maths.

The user-friendly icon menu, function keys, and interactive format enable intuitive operation. The large high-resolution color screen gives exceptional clarity and easily distinguishes different graphs.

This calculator for A level maths comes with a 3-year guarantee and free delivery in UK.

### #4. **HP Prime Graphing Calculator**

The HP Prime Graphing Calculator is a powerhouse designed for advanced mathematical tasks. It is a multi-touch calculator with both a keypad and touch screen.

It has other amazing features like powerful math applications, formative assessment tools, wireless connectivity, and a long-life, Li-ion rechargeable battery

The calculator’s Computer Algebra System (CAS) capabilities make it an excellent choice for Further Maths students.

### #5. Sharp EL-W516TBSL

This A Level maths calculator is an advanced, 4-line scientific calculator with WriteView display.

It allows calculations to be entered and displayed as written. This appears as it would in a textbook.

With 640 functions, the EL-W516TBSL is ideal for professionals and students studying

- General math and science
- pre-algebra
- algebra I & II
- geometry
- pre-calculus
- calculus
- trigonometry
- statistics
- biology
- chemistry
- Physics.

This calculator for A level math features a durable matte black finish with silver accents and operates on twin-power (solar with battery backup).

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## Which of the A Level Calculators Should I Buy?

When it comes to purchasing an A level math calculator, it is important to choose one that meets your specific needs.

Selecting the best A-Level calculator ultimately depends on your individual needs and preferences.

Consider the type of functions you’ll use most frequently, the calculator’s user interface, and its compatibility with exam regulations.

The TI-84 Plus CE and Casio fx-CG50 are highly regarded for their dependable calculations and consistent performance.

If you’re looking for a particularly adept calculator at complex algebra manipulations, consider getting the HP Prime.

In terms of user experience, the touchscreen feature of HP Prime offers an advantage in user interaction. Nevertheless, other calculators’ traditional interfaces also have their benefits.

There is a difference in pricing for these calculators. The TI-84 Plus CE and Casio fx-CG50 are cheaper than the HP Prime.

## How to Maximize A-Level Math Calculators

Although A-Level math calculators are powerful tools, maximizing it can greatly aid your learning experience. Follow these tips while practicing and experimenting with your A-Level math calculator:

**Master Basic Functions:**Before diving into complex calculations, ensure you have a strong understanding of the basic functions of your calculator. This includes arithmetic operations, square roots, percentages, and exponentials.

**Explore Advanced Functions:**A-Level calculators offer a range of advanced mathematical functions. Take the time to familiarize yourself with trigonometric functions, logarithms, exponentials, and inverse functions.

**Utilize Graphing Capabilities:**Graphing calculators are invaluable for visualizing mathematical concepts. Learn how to graph equations, plot points, and analyze graphs better to understand functions, transformations, and relationships between variables.

**Solve Equations:**Many A-Level calculators have equation-solving capabilities. Learn how to use these functions to solve linear and quadratic equations, systems of equations, and more. This can be particularly helpful in algebra and calculus topics.

**Practice Regularly:**Like any skill, using a calculator effectively requires practice. Work through various math problems using your calculator to build confidence and familiarity with its functions.

**Stay Updated:**Keep up with your calculator’s software updates or firmware upgrades. Manufacturers often release updates that improve functionality or fix bugs, ensuring you have the best experience.

**Read the Manual:**While it may seem obvious, many students overlook the user manual. The manual provides detailed information about your calculator’s functions and features. Take the time to read it thoroughly.

## Frequently Asked Questions

**Can I use any calculator for A-Level Maths exams?**It’s important to check the regulations set by your examination board. Some calculators may not be allowed due to their advanced capabilities.

**Are color displays necessary for A-Level calculators?**Color displays can enhance visualization, but they are not essential. Functionality and ease of use should be your primary concerns.

**Do I need to buy a new calculator for Further Maths?**While some A-Level calculators are suitable for both Maths and Further Maths, you should ensure that the calculator you choose meets the requirements of both courses.

**Where can I find more information about approved calculators for exams?**Your school or examination board’s website is a reliable source of information regarding approved exam calculators.

## Conclusion

Investing in the best A-Level calculator is a decision that can significantly impact your success in A-Level Maths and Further Maths courses.

You have powerful tools with options like the Texas Instruments TI-84 Plus CE, Casio FX-991EX ClassWiz, and HP Prime Graphing Calculator. Choose wisely and equip yourself for success in these challenging subjects.

## References

- Casio.co.uk – A-Level Calculators & Cases
- WHSmith.co.uk – School Calculators