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General mailing advice Tips for writing maths
  • You can only send a query to Maths Help by filling in the form on the "Send Query" page. Please do NOT email questions - they will be ignored.

  • We will reply directly to the email address you tell us. Ensure you have typed this exactly.

  • Help us to help you! Don't just send us your problem, but also include a few details about yourself (e.g. age, what course you are following, your school/college) and also tell us how you have tried to solve the problem before you got stuck.

  • Please don't abuse our service by sending whole sets of questions which you are too lazy to try yourself! Genuine queries only, please!

  • We reserve the right to ignore any mail which is obviously not serious. In extreme cases we will issue a formal complaint to your internet provider.
Computer text editors are all slightly different. Just because something looks neat when you type and send it, does not mean that we will be able to read it clearly at this end. So forget fancy formatting and use the standard techniques below for typing maths:

  • Use * for "multiply" to save confusion with the letter x

  • Use the ^ symbol [shift-6 on most computers] for powers. Do not use superscripts. For example, x squared is written x^2.

  • There is no standard symbol for square root. Type sqrt(x) for the square root of x.

  • Be very careful with fractions! Use / as a fraction line. If the top or the bottom of the fraction includes several terms, enclose the top and the bottom in brackets, for example (....)/(....)

  • For roots other than square roots, use fractional powers. (Remember that cube root means to the power of one-third etc.

  • Use "pi" for 3.141592... instead of the Greek symbol. Use the multiplication symbol * to make things clear.

  • Use INT(...) instead of the integration symbol.

  • Use SIGMA(...) instead of the Greek summation symbol.

  • If in doubt, write things out in full using words instead of symbols.

  • Please do NOT try to send files containing images. We will not be able to read them.
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