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Worried I've made a mistake picking a maths degree

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    Ok so I go to uni on Saturday to study maths but I'm becoming increasingly concerned that it isn't really for me. I got an A in Alevel maths but I had to put it so much effort to get it and I didn't even understand half of the content particularly in the stats modules and felt like I was just memorising methods. I found the proofs part of fp1 extremely complicated as well but again I just memorised the method so got the marks in the exam yet I know proofs is a major part of degree maths.

    I also hate mechanics and physics and there's compulsory modules on these topics and I hate computing as well and there's modules for that also :/

    I was thinking of being a maths teacher before but now I'm convinced that's a bad idea as a lot of my maths teachers have told me don't go into teaching cause there's so much paper work and that nowadays and half the students hate maths so much you spend half the time dealing with behaviour issues as opposed to actually teaching them

    So now I have little idea of what I'm gonna do with my degree I mean obviously there's loads of graduate jobs out there but they're so competitive

    I was thinking of doing something like psychology instead as I feel like I'd get a higher grade for my degree or maybe even law ??


    I don't even know anymore I'm really lost. My alevels were A*[psychology] A[maths] B[English]

    Any advice cause I'm panicking
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    Hi. What interests do you have? Maybe take a degree that has something to do with whatever your favourite hobbies are. If you enjoy music and are really into it,then perhaps a music degree of some sort. There are lots of different ones. Or perhaps you like the idea of helping people and could maybe see yourself as a Social Worker or Youth Worker. I think you have to be pretty passionate about your subject to get a degree in it. What do you love?
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    Your first year mostly covers stuff you've already done so you will have a chance to fully understand it. It gets more difficult in 2nd year but just don't leave stuff until the night before and you'll be fine.

    Maths opens lots of doors, I'm looking at placements now and have looked ahead at graduate roles and maths is a degree that is consistently mentioned. I can't say the same for Psychology and Law, these two are some of the most popular degrees and as such are completely oversubscribed meaning tens of thousands of people are year graduate with these degrees having little hope of finding relevant work.

    Calm down, see how first year goes before doing anything drastic.
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    (Original post by markova21)
    Hi. What interests do you have? Maybe take a degree that has something to do with whatever your favourite hobbies are. If you enjoy music and are really into it,then perhaps a music degree of some sort. There are lots of different ones. Or perhaps you like the idea of helping people and could maybe see yourself as a Social Worker or Youth Worker. I think you have to be pretty passionate about your subject to get a degree in it. What do you love?
    See this is the problem I wouldn't say I have much of a passion for anything to the point where I'd wanna study it for 3 years . I'm passionate about education and learning in general but I don't wanna be s teacher anymore I don't think so I'm rather lost
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    I think you can still get full funding if you drop out first year, so maybe see how it goes? I don't think your experience of A level maths is a good predictor of your experience of university maths, such is the difference.
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    (Original post by NoMansLie)
    Your first year mostly covers stuff you've already done so you will have a chance to fully understand it. It gets more difficult in 2nd year but just don't leave stuff until the night before and you'll be fine.

    Maths opens lots of doors, I'm looking at placements now and have looked ahead at graduate roles and maths is a degree that is consistently mentioned. I can't say the same for Psychology and Law, these two are some of the most popular degrees and as such are completely oversubscribed meaning tens of thousands of people are year graduate with these degrees having little hope of finding relevant work.

    Calm down, see how first year goes before doing anything drastic.
    Thanks so much for the response. That's very reassuring and yeh I think the best idea would be to do it for a year and if after that I hate it then I can always pick something else. I think deep down I'm just worried that it's gonna be really difficult and I won't be able to get a 2:1 or a first cause I really don't wanna end up with a terrible grade like a 2:2
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    Maybe at this time getting a degree isn't the right option for you then. Have you thought about a Higher Apprenticeship? My friend's son is doing one in Accounting and getting well paid for it at the same time.
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    (Original post by 13 1 20 8 42)
    I think you can still get full funding if you drop out first year, so maybe see how it goes? I don't think your experience of A level maths is a good predictor of your experience of university maths, such is the difference.
    Yeh true I guess I'll just stick it out and if it's that bad I can always switch subjects. I think I'm gonna try retaking some of my Alevel exams as well next summer so I have more options later on if I do wanna swap courses lol . Thanks for the advice
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    (Original post by markova21)
    Maybe at this time getting a degree isn't the right option for you then. Have you thought about a Higher Apprenticeship? My friend's son is doing one in Accounting and getting well paid for it at the same time.
    No that really doesn't interest me. I want to get a degree so that's what I'll do . I'll just have to work hard to make sure I get a good degree
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    (Original post by fefssdf)
    Ok so I go to uni on Saturday to study maths but I'm becoming increasingly concerned that it isn't really for me. I got an A in Alevel maths but I had to put it so much effort to get it and I didn't even understand half of the content particularly in the stats modules and felt like I was just memorising methods. I found the proofs part of fp1 extremely complicated as well but again I just memorised the method so got the marks in the exam yet I know proofs is a major part of degree maths.

    I also hate mechanics and physics and there's compulsory modules on these topics and I hate computing as well and there's modules for that also :/

    I was thinking of being a maths teacher before but now I'm convinced that's a bad idea as a lot of my maths teachers have told me don't go into teaching cause there's so much paper work and that nowadays and half the students hate maths so much you spend half the time dealing with behaviour issues as opposed to actually teaching them

    So now I have little idea of what I'm gonna do with my degree I mean obviously there's loads of graduate jobs out there but they're so competitive

    I was thinking of doing something like psychology instead as I feel like I'd get a higher grade for my degree or maybe even law ??


    I don't even know anymore I'm really lost. My alevels were A*[psychology] A[maths] B[English]

    Any advice cause I'm panicking
    How long did you spend studying the subject? I think that is a good indication for whether it is beyond you or not. From a lot of googling to no ends and asking multiple people, I have found that the average A grade student spends around 300-500 hours. If you spent 600 hours on the A level I would not get deeply worried. However if you needed to spend 1000-2000 hours for the A level I would say maybe it is too difficult for you.

    I am talking just the A level not further Maths on top. basically you should be spending 40-80 hours per module from the impression I get. If you spend 100 hours per module that probably is not something to worry about because maybe your just in efficient in study or procrastinate etc. However if your getting to 160-200 hours per module then that's worrying.

    Just how long did you spend studying the subject at A level? I think that is a good question for ability etc. As for whether you enjoy it or want to do it/motivated well that only you can answer.
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    I would say try it and see how it goes. But if you really feel you know it is not for you, try to change to a preferred subject, perhaps at the same uni. The inflexibility of the system is a liability, very unlike undergrad in the US, where you can experiment and it's almost expected you will change your path.

    My daughter had a friend in physics at Cam and she dropped out in the first term and went to Manchester to do literature, which she loves. There is no question she did the right thing, but she did try Cam first, however briefly. My daughter was fortunate enough to know what she wanted and happy to stay in it.
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    (Original post by Luke7456)
    How long did you spend studying the subject? I think that is a good indication for whether it is beyond you or not. From a lot of googling to no ends and asking multiple people, I have found that the average A grade student spends around 300-500 hours. If you spent 600 hours on the A level I would not get deeply worried. However if you needed to spend 1000-2000 hours for the A level I would say maybe it is too difficult for you.

    I am talking just the A level not further Maths on top. basically you should be spending 40-80 hours per module from the impression I get. If you spend 100 hours per module that probably is not something to worry about because maybe your just in efficient in study or procrastinate etc. However if your getting to 160-200 hours per module then that's worrying.

    Just how long did you spend studying the subject at A level? I think that is a good question for ability etc. As for whether you enjoy it or want to do it/motivated well that only you can answer.
    I spend a LOT of hours studying for Alevel maths ; probably like around 3 hours every day on average and more at weekends. I did all the questions in the textbook and all the paper papers from the last 5 years from all the exam boards and also the international Alevel papers. I did this much work but still I got a B in my c3 exam but got an A* in c4
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    (Original post by alcibiade)
    I would say try it and see how it goes. But if you really feel you know it is not for you, try to change to a preferred subject, perhaps at the same uni. The inflexibility of the system is a liability, very unlike undergrad in the US, where you can experiment and it's almost expected you will change your path.

    My daughter had a friend in physics at Cam and she dropped out in the first term and went to Manchester to do literature, which she loves. There is no question she did the right thing, but she did try Cam first, however briefly. My daughter was fortunate enough to know what she wanted and happy to stay in it.
    Thanks for the advice I guess I'll just have to wait and see what it is really like and there is always the choice to swap subjects at the same uni if I want I'm glad your daughters friend is doing something she likes now
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    (Original post by fefssdf)
    I spend a LOT of hours studying for Alevel maths ; probably like around 3 hours every day on average and more at weekends. I did all the questions in the textbook and all the paper papers from the last 5 years from all the exam boards and also the international Alevel papers. I did this much work but still I got a B in my c3 exam but got an A* in c4
    Hmm so lets see starting from sept 1st through to april 30th there is 242 days if we multiply this by 3 we get 726. Which is 121 hours per module. which is more then usual but not really in panic territory. I know you said you did 3 hours per day on week days and more on weekends however I am assuming you had Christmas off and boxing day off etc maybe your bday off and the occasional social nights, plus I am also assuming you did not start this from sept 1st so the impression i get is the 726 hours figure is about right?

    would you agree or would you say it went over/under this?
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    (Original post by Luke7456)
    Hmm so lets see starting from sept 1st through to april 30th there is 242 days if we multiply this by 3 we get 726. Which is 121 hours per module. which is more then usual but not really in panic territory. I know you said you did 3 hours per day on week days and more on weekends however I am assuming you had Christmas off and boxing day off etc maybe your bday off and the occasional social nights, plus I am also assuming you did not start this from sept 1st so the impression i get is the 726 hours figure is about right?

    would you agree or would you say it went over/under this?
    It's probably a bit over that really but about right ; thanks for working out the numbers though as makes me feel a bit less stressed as I guess if I put in a similar level of work in my degree I should be able to do well sha
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    (Original post by fefssdf)
    I don't even know anymore I'm really lost.
    (Original post by 13 1 20 8 42)
    I think you can still get full funding if you drop out first year, so maybe see how it goes? I don't think your experience of A level maths is a good predictor of your experience of university maths, such is the difference.
    Yes - SFE allow you to restart one year, you will still incur the debt but you can apply for further funding if you decide to take a different course. You don't repay anything until you start earning enough to do so.

    Give Maths a go and see how you get on. The first year doesn't count towards your final degree class anyway. And if it really doesn't work out but you still like the university they may help you transfer to a different course.

    The other option is to stop now, take a gap year, and rethink what you want to do. That way you won't incur any costs (unless you've signed an accomodation contract that you can't cancel).

    Good luck!
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    Can you change course rather than withdraw or perhaps see how it goes and then decide to switch to psychology.


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    (Original post by fefssdf)
    Ok so I go to uni on Saturday to study maths but I'm becoming increasingly concerned that it isn't really for me. I got an A in Alevel maths but I had to put it so much effort to get it and I didn't even understand half of the content particularly in the stats modules and felt like I was just memorising methods. I found the proofs part of fp1 extremely complicated as well but again I just memorised the method so got the marks in the exam yet I know proofs is a major part of degree maths.

    I also hate mechanics and physics and there's compulsory modules on these topics and I hate computing as well and there's modules for that also :/

    I was thinking of being a maths teacher before but now I'm convinced that's a bad idea as a lot of my maths teachers have told me don't go into teaching cause there's so much paper work and that nowadays and half the students hate maths so much you spend half the time dealing with behaviour issues as opposed to actually teaching them

    So now I have little idea of what I'm gonna do with my degree I mean obviously there's loads of graduate jobs out there but they're so competitive

    I was thinking of doing something like psychology instead as I feel like I'd get a higher grade for my degree or maybe even law ??


    I don't even know anymore I'm really lost. My alevels were A*[psychology] A[maths] B[English]

    Any advice cause I'm panicking
    I think you will know after first year whether it is for you. The way you learn at university is very different to school and it may help you
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    Yeah by the sounds of it you should be okay if you just put in that much more time then the other students.

    Although there are other factors such as study techniques and ways you apply yourself. A less intelligent person who puts in less time in total hours can still out perform their brighter harder working peers if they have better study techniques.

    I can't really comment on your study techniques as I do not know what they are etc, however this may be worth looking into. There are some really bizarre ones like the study lamp.

    The study lamp is basically you get a lamp which you only ever use for studying you never use it for anything ever, but whenever you study you try to make sure you are always using it. You should also label it study lamp. This sounds OCD pointless and absurd but there was a study done somewhere (can't find source at the mo) that proved this made an entire grade points difference in results. There are other things such as you normally only concentrate for 25 mins then your efficiency plumetts so if you take a 5-10 minute break every 25 minutes but still work flat out it works much better then just studying without a break. although your concentration span should improve with repetition. Meditation can help to.
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    (Original post by Luke7456)
    Yeah by the sounds of it you should be okay if you just put in that much more time then the other students.

    Although there are other factors such as study techniques and ways you apply yourself. A less intelligent person who puts in less time in total hours can still out perform their brighter harder working peers if they have better study techniques.

    I can't really comment on your study techniques as I do not know what they are etc, however this may be worth looking into. There are some really bizarre ones like the study lamp.

    The study lamp is basically you get a lamp which you only ever use for studying you never use it for anything ever, but whenever you study you try to make sure you are always using it. You should also label it study lamp. This sounds OCD pointless and absurd but there was a study done somewhere (can't find source at the mo) that proved this made an entire grade points difference in results. There are other things such as you normally only concentrate for 25 mins then your efficiency plumetts so if you take a 5-10 minute break every 25 minutes but still work flat out it works much better then just studying without a break. although your concentration span should improve with repetition. Meditation can help to.
    Wow that study lamp thing is rather absurd but kinda interesting. I'm a really motivated person and can study for like 5 hours straight without a break and will spend like 30 mins on a question till I understand it haha . I guess I'm just gonna have to spend a while on the content to try and grasp what's going on or just find some smart people on my course who can help me lol

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