In general, Part III will provide at most a quick review of material covered in Cambridge undergraduate courses. Therefore it is a good idea for students to spend time consolidating their mathematical background in the relevant subject areas before arriving in Cambridge.
A good strategy is to look at the courses offered in the Part III Guide to Courses. You will see two years’ worth of courses; past years are only a guide, as courses and their descriptions may change from year to year.
You can find prerequisite pages for subject areas as well as prerequisites inside the individual course descriptions. Many of these refer to Cambridge undergraduate courses. You can find formal lists of contents of the undergraduate courses here. To help you find out whether you need to learn any new material, a good idea is to look at the example sheets and past exam questions for the relevant undergraduate courses. The example sheets for pure and statistics courses can be found here, and those for applied and theoretical physics courses can be found here. Note that the example sheet questions are designed to be challenging problems.
To give you more detailed guidance than the above advice, please check our Part III Preparation Resources. These resources are not complete yet, so for courses/areas for which you cannot find enough information in the resources, please use the advice given in the above paragraph.
The expectation is that most students will handle the amount and depth of mathematical learning required without further assistance. However, you will find some sources of support to help you make the transition:
- In the first few days, look out for Catch-up Workshops: these are held in several subject areas to review required background topics. You will get much more out of them if you have looked at the corresponding resources we provide under the above link.
- During the first few weeks of Michaelmas Term, there will be Part III Drop-ins where you can ask PhD students for help with your lecture courses.
If you find that you need more help than these resources can provide, please contact your College Director of Studies for additional support. The earlier you ask for help, the easier it will be for you.