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How hard is it taking 5 subjects at AS Level??

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    I am considering taking 5 subjects at AS Level, i wasn't originally planning to, but there is 5 i want to take and i can't decided which not to take.

    3 of the 5 i want to take are: Law, Psychology and English.
    But then i want to take either Geography or History. I really can't decided which to take and which not to take though!?

    If it's any help, i want to go on to study Law at University. I have lots of pros and cons to both Geography and History, i don't know what to do. Not taking English is also an option. But i really don't know what would be best!

    Any opinons on the subjects i am considering taking, or advice, or past experiances is much appreciated.

    Please help!
    Thanks
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    Please, does anyone have any advice they can give to me?
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    5 is going to be hard, but not impossible.

    But also it is going to be pointless as Uni's only take your highest 3 grades at A2,

    What you could do if you really can't decide is to do them all for a few weeks and then decide what to drop.
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    (Original post by laughing_cow)
    Please, does anyone have any advice they can give to me?
    I've been told that you should be putting in at least 4 hours per subject per week of SELF STUDY (this doesn't include lesson time). 16 hours a week for 4 A-levels is too hard for some people, I can imagine 20 being a lot harder. I'm not saying it's impossible though, it will just dramatically increase your workload.
    It's also very unnecessary. If the requirements for your chosen university course are 4 A-levels, they will not favor you with 5.
    Doing 5 takes away a lot of time spent on your other subjects so you may do worse in them, and remember, AAAA is better than AABBB.

    I'd say just stick with 4 maximum, especially since the subjects you're thinking of taking are very content heavy.
    But if you REALLY feel like you have to do 5, then take 5, but it will be A LOT of work. You will have very little to no free time. I'm only taking 4 and even I don't have much free time, maybe a couple of hours at the weekend but that's it.
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    Don't do 5 unless your incredibly intelligent (I mean top of the school, oxbridge cert etc.). I did 5 ASs, coming off of 6A*s 5As and a B at GCSE and found it incredibly hardgoing. Although I did attain AAAAB at the end of the first year, I then dropped down to three (the normal A2 load). I found that my workload was so much simpler, even with preparation for an oxford admissions test and subsequent interview involved and the supposed jump from AS to A2. It's not just that it makes your life easier either - my grades rose by 10% minimum in the transition from year 12 to 13 and I ended up getting A*A*A with the A at 89.something%. As far as advising for law, I have very little knowledge but I would say do history, as friends I have that did law have said it looks good on an application.
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    If I were you, I'd go with history. History's one of the more "traditional" subjects so is generally more respected. That's not to say geography isn't though.

    Some unis tend to a bit uneasy about law A Level. Some are ok with it, some aren't. In fact, many unis say they don't require law applicants to have law A Level, so that might be worth bearing in mind!
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    5 AS Subjects is not impossible but is a lot of work. In addition, universities only make offers dependent on three A-Levels and (occasionally) a fourth AS. For applying to a university, what matters is your grades, and UMS if it is asked for. A candidate with 4A grades will be seen as better than a candidate with 3A grades and 2B grades.

    If taking 5 subjects is liable to bring down your grades overall (Which it will unless you put in more effort than you already will have to) then take 4. If you're prepared to put in an obscene amount of work to do all 5 subjects to an equally high standard and really can't decide between Geography and History then do 5, and good luck to you.
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    (Original post by dean01234)
    5 is going to be hard, but not impossible.

    But also it is going to be pointless as Uni's only take your highest 3 grades at A2,

    What you could do if you really can't decide is to do them all for a few weeks and then decide what to drop.
    Yeah, i thought the workload would bet alot too, which is why i was doubting it, i think i'll stick to 4. But taking 5 for the first few weeks is a very good idea! Thanks for your advice!
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    (Original post by lsaul95)
    I've been told that you should be putting in at least 4 hours per subject per week of SELF STUDY (this doesn't include lesson time). 16 hours a week for 4 A-levels is too hard for some people, I can imagine 20 being a lot harder. I'm not saying it's impossible though, it will just dramatically increase your workload.
    It's also very unnecessary. If the requirements for your chosen university course are 4 A-levels, they will not favor you with 5.
    Doing 5 takes away a lot of time spent on your other subjects so you may do worse in them, and remember, AAAA is better than AABBB.

    I'd say just stick with 4 maximum, especially since the subjects you're thinking of taking are very content heavy.
    But if you REALLY feel like you have to do 5, then take 5, but it will be A LOT of work. You will have very little to no free time. I'm only taking 4 and even I don't have much free time, maybe a couple of hours at the weekend but that's it.
    Thanks! I'm going to stick to 4 i think. Thanks for your advice!
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    I did 5 ( Chemistry, Biology, Psychology, Geography, RS).

    Trust me stick to 4! 5 is unnecessary and some will suffer ( well chemistry did for me especially).

    Do 4 and if you want carry on all 4


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    How hard did you find your GCSEs?

    I took 5 subjects at AS (and also at A2) and didn't find it that hard - had plenty of free time to do other stuff (such as YE, which actually took almost as much time as all 5 subjects put together in Year 12!) and I had a bit of a long journey to school every day so it would have been easier without that.
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    (Original post by tory88)
    Don't do 5 unless your incredibly intelligent (I mean top of the school, oxbridge cert etc.). I did 5 ASs, coming off of 6A*s 5As and a B at GCSE and found it incredibly hardgoing. Although I did attain AAAAB at the end of the first year, I then dropped down to three (the normal A2 load). I found that my workload was so much simpler, even with preparation for an oxford admissions test and subsequent interview involved and the supposed jump from AS to A2. It's not just that it makes your life easier either - my grades rose by 10% minimum in the transition from year 12 to 13 and I ended up getting A*A*A with the A at 89.something%. As far as advising for law, I have very little knowledge but I would say do history, as friends I have that did law have said it looks good on an application.
    Yeah, i agree it would be alot of work to do 5, so i think i'll stick to 4. History i know would look better to unis for Law, and is more helpful, but then i was thinking that i would do better in Geography as i got an A grade doing the GCSE in a quater of the time? What do you think would be considered better Law at unis...A higher Geography grade, or a slightly lower grade in History? Thanks for your help
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    (Original post by laughing_cow)
    I am considering taking 5 subjects at AS Level, i wasn't originally planning to, but there is 5 i want to take and i can't decided which not to take.

    3 of the 5 i want to take are: Law, Psychology and English.
    But then i want to take either Geography or History. I really can't decided which to take and which not to take though!?

    If it's any help, i want to go on to study Law at University. I have lots of pros and cons to both Geography and History, i don't know what to do. Not taking English is also an option. But i really don't know what would be best!

    Any opinons on the subjects i am considering taking, or advice, or past experiances is much appreciated.

    Please help!
    Thanks
    I was in a very similar situation to you. I ended up doing Maths, Further maths, economics, chemistry and Physics at AS. I had to cut back on my social life a bit but it wasn't by very much and it was worth it as I did well in all my subjects and wouldn't have done much better if I had done just 4.

    It can definately be done, 5 at AS isnt that hard as long as your good at your subjects. The only problem is I need to decide which one to drop in a months time for my A2 and its become very hard, I might have to go on with all 5 at A2 because I can't think of which one I should drop.
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    (Original post by alex_hk90)
    How hard did you find your GCSEs?

    I took 5 subjects at AS (and also at A2) and didn't find it that hard - had plenty of free time to do other stuff (such as YE, which actually took almost as much time as all 5 subjects put together in Year 12!) and I had a bit of a long journey to school every day so it would have been easier without that.
    Im thinking of carrying my 5 onto A2 but not sure if I'll be able to do it.
    What subjects did you do?
    Do you think I'll be fine if I coped in the first year?
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    I took 4 + the EPQ. It's not too bad and definitely manageable, certainly not impossible to do 5. Geography and History are both excellent subjects, so I'd suggest you try both and then drop one after a few weeks if it's too tough. And I echo what an above poster said for Law - if you're gunning for a top uni it isn't respected highly in the same way that Geography and History - two 'facilitating' subjects - are. It's all down to you though, after all an A in Law is far better than an E in History. Hope this helps
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    (Original post by alex_hk90)
    How hard did you find your GCSEs?

    I took 5 subjects at AS (and also at A2) and didn't find it that hard - had plenty of free time to do other stuff (such as YE, which actually took almost as much time as all 5 subjects put together in Year 12!) and I had a bit of a long journey to school every day so it would have been easier without that.
    Wow, that's good! I found most of my GCSE's easy, i did some of them early and stuff. But i was lazy and didn't do a great deal of revision, but still managed to get good grades, mostly A's, but some B's and A*'s and a couple of C's. I was thinking that doing 4 might be a shock to me as it is, because from what i have heard you actually need to do lots of revision, not just the night before like i could get away with at GCSE.
    Thanks. What did you take?
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    (Original post by St. Brynjar)
    I took 4 + the EPQ. It's not too bad and definitely manageable, certainly not impossible to do 5. Geography and History are both excellent subjects, so I'd suggest you try both and then drop one after a few weeks if it's too tough. And I echo what an above poster said for Law - if you're gunning for a top uni it isn't respected highly in the same way that Geography and History - two 'facilitating' subjects - are. It's all down to you though, after all an A in Law is far better than an E in History. Hope this helps
    Ah, thanks. I don't think i want to not take Law because at my college there's lots of work experiance and stuff which is Law related which i think will be good for me. I am also aiming to go to an average uni, but obviously a top one would be great! hahaha! Thank you...
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    (Original post by laughing_cow)
    ...
    Personally i would say it depends on the subjects chosen. If the subjects are broad and not related then it would be very hard to do 5 subjects, but if the subjects some-what interlink with each other (say Maths, Further Maths, Chemistry, Physics and Geography), there would be a significant difference as the mathematics and sciences will benefit each other.
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    (Original post by Miryo)
    Im thinking of carrying my 5 onto A2 but not sure if I'll be able to do it.
    What subjects did you do?
    I did Maths, Further Maths, Economics, Physics, and Computing.

    (Original post by Miryo)
    Do you think I'll be fine if I coped in the first year?
    Generally, yes. One thing to check though is how much coursework your subjects have and if your school requires you to do them at the same time. The only time where it was a bit busy for me was when I had two courseworks and January exams pretty much simultaneously.

    (Original post by laughing_cow)
    Wow, that's good! I found most of my GCSE's easy, i did some of them early and stuff. But i was lazy and didn't do a great deal of revision, but still managed to get good grades, mostly A's, but some B's and A*'s and a couple of C's. I was thinking that doing 4 might be a shock to me as it is, because from what i have heard you actually need to do lots of revision, not just the night before like i could get away with at GCSE.
    Thanks. What did you take?
    Well, it is a bit harder to do it night-before but not impossible (not that I would advise this as a strategy!) - the material is more in-depth and some of the concepts marginally more difficult. See above for the subjects I took. I know they're very different from the ones you're planning to take but I had friends do a similar combination to the one you're thinking of and they seemed to cope alright.
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    I did 5 at AS Level (6 if you include critical thinking, which was compulsory)... English Lang, English Lit, Biology, Art, German and Critical Thinking. I didn't find it particularly stressful. Art took up so much more time than the rest, so I ended up dropping it at A2, but I think if it had been a normal/ less time consuming subject I would have been able to keep it. I was needing to spend something like 10 hours a week on my Art so it was just too much, but other subjects you wouldn't spend anywhere near that amount.

    It also depends on you as a person. I certainly didn't do 4 hours of private study per week per subject as someone else here has suggested (probably more like 1-2 hours if that, except for Art as I mentioned), and I still came out with AABB. All I did was the compulsory homework/ coursework that was set. But some people do need to do more private study than others. It does depend partly on your intelligence/ aptitude for your chosen subjects/ ability to learn and retain information.

    Anyway there's no harm in taking 5 to begin with, you can always drop one if it's too tough.

    Edit: Also, I don't know much about Law, but I would have thought if you want to study a Law degree you would definitely want to be doing English, and History as opposed to Geography.

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