Students keep making the same mistakes in their GCSE Maths exams. Inspired by the examiner's reports find out where students are losing vital marks, so that you can avoid the common slip-ups!

# Bearings

**Bearings** are simply a way of giving directions (a bit more accurately than just relying on North, South, East and West!).

If they are given with a distance as well then you have an exact **position.**

**Note:**

**1.** Bearings are always measured from **North,** which is 000^{0} (or 360^{0}). **Always draw a North line at each point** to give a guide for your protractor.

**2.** They are always measured **clockwise** and must have **three** figures. So East is 090^{0}, South is 180^{0 }and West is 270^{0}.

If you are given the bearing and position of something **from a point** and asked to mark it in (after which you may be asked to measure something else) then here's what you do:

**1.** Draw a North line at the point you are measuring from.

**2.** Put your protractor on this point and line up 0^{0} with the North line. Always lean right over the paper when you're doing this even though you might think you look a bit stupid!

**3.** Read round the protractor **clockwise** until you reach the angle you want and mark it with a pencil.

**4. ** Draw a pencil line from the point you are measuring from right through your angle point.

**5.** Check your scale (if there is one) and measure the distance you need along this line. Put a cross to show your position.

**Don't** rub any of your pencil lines out. These help to show what you've done.

Here's the kind of diagram you might have for a ship which is 8 km away from a lighthouse on a bearing of 125^{0} using a scale of 1 cm = 1 km.

To measure the bearing of something, call it B, from something else, call it A, here's what you do:

**1.** Draw a North line at A (because that's where you're measuring **from**).

**2.** Draw a pencil line connecting A to B. This acts as a guide for your protractor!

**3. **Place your protractor on A and line up 0^{0} with the North line.

**4.** Read round clockwise until you reach the line going to B. There's your Bearing! Don't forget to write it with **three figures **(if the angle is only two digits put a zero in front!).