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Matrix FAQ

1. Which level of the school-leaving exam does Matrix prepare for?

Matrix has been developed with special attention to the newly introduced school-leaving exams in a number of countries. The trend for these exam reforms is to implement tests on two different levels: one at a desired minimum level after completing the secondary school syllabus, and the other level designed to select students for study at a higher level, for example in higher education.

Matrix Pre-Intermediate provides a solid foundation of language competence and bridges the gap between other, less challenging courses and the more demanding content of Matrix. Between them, Matrix Pre-Intermediate and Intermediate cover all the key language areas necessary for the lower exam level. Matrix Upper-Intermediate ensures that exam candidates are able to pass the school-leaving exam at the higher level.

2. Can I use Matrix with classes that are not preparing for an exam? 

Yes! Matrix is a challenging and satisfying course for all students aged 14-19. The coverage of language structures and topics is in line with most general secondary syllabuses for teaching English as a foreign language and the course allows for flexibility and development. See also Question 10 

Matrix includes a range of interesting topics and exercises appropriate to the age and interests of young people. Pre-Intermediate features Reading for Pleasure sections and Culture Zones that extend the students' access to English-speaking culture. The Intermediate and Upper-Intermediate levels feature systematic language and skills development and a wide range of practice activities

4. I am thinking about starting to teach with Matrix. How much English do my students need to have studied before starting Matrix?

Matrix Pre-Intermediate assumes that students starting the course have had about 250 to 300 hours of English previously. That is roughly equal to about three years in, for example, primary or lower secondary school.

To start using Matrix at the Intermediate level, students would need to have completed at least a Pre-Intermediate course. In the case of mixed-ability classes, some students would even have used another Intermediate course previously. However, as the level of Matrix is fairly high throughout, they will still feel that they are progressing and learning new material.

To start Matrix Upper-Intermediate, students would need to have completed an Intermediate course. If you are not sure which level of Matrix would be most appropriate for your students and would like to look at some sample pages, visit the OUP catalogue for more information, or speak to your local OUP representative - InterPress

5. What are the Let's practise sections for? 

The Let's practise pages in Matrix Intermediate and Upper-Intermediate are designed to offer optional practice for the material presented in the unit. There are two Let's Practise sections in each unit.

The main lesson pages cover the core syllabus for each topic; Let's Practise provides a resource of extra material to supplement the main unit as and when your students need more revision or consolidation. You can use the sections flexibly as you need them, perhaps within a lesson to provide immediate extra practice of a difficult structure, or for homework to reinforce all the material covered in a lesson.

6. What are the icons that look like stairs in the Let's Practice sections?

These icons or symbols indicate extension activities. When you practise some language areas (for example, a grammar structure), you may want to extend the material covered in the main lesson section to include some related language points. The extension exercises offer you the opportunity to do that.

Of course, you may decide to skip extension activities or to do them some other time. They are designed so that they can be used at any point, provided that previous main pages in the unit have already been covered.