Turn on thread page Beta
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    i hate the pressure to do subjects that universities find impressive, imo, ALL A level subjects require a lot of work and dedication, who's to say that a Drama A level for example is worth less than a Maths or Physics A level? Having just done my A2's, i think that doing any A level at all should prove that you're worthy of a uni place...and to refuse places on the grounds that certain subjects are "soft subjects" (ie drama, photography etc) just isnt fair. So, I'd advise choosing subjects that you'll enjoy because you're going to be studying them fairly intensively for the next two years, don't pick something you don't like, it isn't worth it!
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by A SoapBubble)
    i hate the pressure to do subjects that universities find impressive, imo, ALL A level subjects require a lot of work and dedication, who's to say that a Drama A level for example is worth less than a Maths or Physics A level? Having just done my A2's, i think that doing any A level at all should prove that you're worthy of a uni place...and to refuse places on the grounds that certain subjects are "soft subjects" (ie drama, photography etc) just isnt fair. So, I'd advise choosing subjects that you'll enjoy because you're going to be studying them fairly intensively for the next two years, don't pick something you don't like, it isn't worth it!
    Did you take subjects like drama and photography? And don't lie if you did:p:
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    how did you guess?? yep, i took photography, drama, english lang&lit and french, dropped photo at the end of AS (because it wasnt run as an A2 at my school). I applied for French and Spanish at uni, and was told that the most likely explanation for my unsuccessful applications (4 out of 6 grrr!) was because of my other options.
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    They aren't soft because they are easy. They are soft because they are non-academic.
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    but i want to do french, that's not exactly the most academic subject to do. i'd have thought that my choices contribute more to a language related career than, say, physics would.
    Offline

    2
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Mia:x)
    What are the best subjects to take at Alevel?? Best implying most impressive on a university application and most employable.

    x
    Who cares? Pick what you enjoy most. As long as you have an idea as to what you're gonna do with those subjects, you'll be fine.

    Traditional subjects are respected, if you're that concerned. If you have no idea what you wanna do and can go either way - as in, you may go for humanities, you may go for science - then my advice is take 2 of each field.

    My boyfriend took:
    History
    Eng Lit
    Maths
    Physics

    I took, at AS anyway,
    Art
    Eng Lit
    Chemistry
    Biology

    My bf went onto study History. I went onto do Neuroscience, and subsequently switched course so now I'm doing Art History.

    In the end, it all depends on what field you're gonna go into. And take it from someone who has studied for a year at uni level something that I hated - do not take something for its "respectability". Practicality is good but you also gotta care, respect and love your subject besides that. I mean, sure, History of Art is neither impressive nor that practical - but I'm gonna use my degree to get into writing or design or even museum work, and I'd love to teach Art or Art History. Neuroscience - sure it's impressive, I've had my share of "WOW"s whenever I named my former course - but I was never gonna use it which means all I would've done would be waste over £3000 on something I'd never use and would end up loathing.

    So in the end, choose subjects that suit you.
    Offline

    2
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by A SoapBubble)
    i hate the pressure to do subjects that universities find impressive, imo, ALL A level subjects require a lot of work and dedication, who's to say that a Drama A level for example is worth less than a Maths or Physics A level? Having just done my A2's, i think that doing any A level at all should prove that you're worthy of a uni place...and to refuse places on the grounds that certain subjects are "soft subjects" (ie drama, photography etc) just isnt fair. So, I'd advise choosing subjects that you'll enjoy because you're going to be studying them fairly intensively for the next two years, don't pick something you don't like, it isn't worth it!
    I've never heard of a Photography A-Level... Perhaps that's why universities think it's "soft". Because people know nothing about it, therefore it sounds obscure which people tend to associate with doss subjects. I would say if you meet the basic requirement for the course you wanna enter into, then you shouldn't be discriminated against based on your other subjects. But if you think about it - EVERYONE who apply for that course WILL have the basic requirements all met anyway, so how on earth are they to distinguish who is better academically besides from the PS? Their other subjects and their other grades. Now, would you normally respect an A in Maths, which you know is hard to get, more, or would you respect an A in Art, more? Of course Maths takes preference.

    ^Don't get me wrong, I did Art A-Level and I can tell you it's one of the hardest and most stressful A-Levels I know - and people think it's a doss! :mad:
    Offline

    15
    (Original post by irisng)
    I've never heard of a Photography A-Level... Perhaps that's why universities think it's "soft". Because people know nothing about it, therefore it sounds obscure which people tend to associate with doss subjects. I would say if you meet the basic requirement for the course you wanna enter into, then you shouldn't be discriminated against based on your other subjects. But if you think about it - EVERYONE who apply for that course WILL have the basic requirements all met anyway, so how on earth are they to distinguish who is better academically besides from the PS? Their other subjects and their other grades. Now, would you normally respect an A in Maths, which you know is hard to get, more, or would you respect an A in Art, more? Of course Maths takes preference.

    ^Don't get me wrong, I did Art A-Level and I can tell you it's one of the hardest and most stressful A-Levels I know - and people think it's a doss! :mad:
    But many things are hard... like juggling, running a marathon, painting a landscape... they are just non-academic, and university is an academic institution, let's not forget that.
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    Agreed, that well rounded is the best way to go- so if you have a change of heart at any time it's great!

    I did Maths, FM, French, Economics and Chemistry at AS as i wasn't 100% CERTAIN what i wanted to do at Uni, now i've finished AS, i dropped chemistry to focus on others, as i want to do Economics at University-

    Maths- Essential
    FM - Useful
    Economics- Useful/I enjoy it
    French- Well rounded, Languages =
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by irisng)
    I've never heard of a Photography A-Level... Perhaps that's why universities think it's "soft". Because people know nothing about it, therefore it sounds obscure which people tend to associate with doss subjects. I would say if you meet the basic requirement for the course you wanna enter into, then you shouldn't be discriminated against based on your other subjects. But if you think about it - EVERYONE who apply for that course WILL have the basic requirements all met anyway, so how on earth are they to distinguish who is better academically besides from the PS? Their other subjects and their other grades. Now, would you normally respect an A in Maths, which you know is hard to get, more, or would you respect an A in Art, more? Of course Maths takes preference.

    ^Don't get me wrong, I did Art A-Level and I can tell you it's one of the hardest and most stressful A-Levels I know - and people think it's a doss! :mad:
    that's what drives me mad, an Art A level is SO much work, friends of mine who took it were always working on various art projects etc, and with photography, i probably spent about 60% of my homework time just doing that. And, yes ok, anyone can go and take a photo, or pick up a paintbrush, but you need to have a certain amount of talent to be able to do the course, just like with anything else.

    Maybe it's because all the complex formulae look very impressive and hard to understand....:rolleyes:
    Offline

    14
    Perhaps the reason why art and other less academic A-Levels are generally rated below the traditional ones is because of the scope they provide for courses? A maths A-Level is very useful for numerous courses and shows key skills (that you're numerate, analytical etc.), which art is only useful for art or a closely related subject.
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    9
    ReputationRep:
    Heya thanks for all the help guys thats really useful!! Ive heard that PPE at oxford is a really interesting course to take, so ive been thinking about that possibly. Im not really interested in any of the arts side of things, though i do love english!!
    Is there much value in taking a language for A level??

    x
    Offline

    14
    I think a language is best if you want to keep your options open or if you had a spell abroad in the course, but I'm not taking one because I'm rubbish at them (didn't even do them at GCSE) and I'd only say take one if you enjoy it.
    Offline

    17
    ReputationRep:
    Glad you like PPE at Oxford, but there is lots of competition for it. A2 Maths is highly desirable, and at least AS History is helpful. Unless you really like them, you don't really need to do any of the philo, politics or economics for A-level or at all, which is good news if your school doesn't offer them. In the Oxford pages of TSR someone wrote an amazing guide to PPE, I can't remember what he's called but I know his avatar is of a smiley drumming =/
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Mia:x)
    Is there much value in taking a language for A level??
    probably not for PPE, no. But why not? you learn a lot about the other country - culture, history etc. But i suppose you could argue that you can just go and live there for a while to learn the language...

    (Original post by Glutamic Acid)
    Perhaps the reason why art and other less academic A-Levels are generally rated below the traditional ones is because of the scope they provide for courses? A maths A-Level is very useful for numerous courses and shows key skills (that you're numerate, analytical etc.), which art is only useful for art or a closely related subject.
    Hadn't really thought of that...but still, surely for a course like French, something like Drama would be useful? In terms of confidence building and that sort of thing.
    Offline

    13
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by A SoapBubble)
    that's what drives me mad, an Art A level is SO much work, friends of mine who took it were always working on various art projects etc, and with photography, i probably spent about 60% of my homework time just doing that. And, yes ok, anyone can go and take a photo, or pick up a paintbrush, but you need to have a certain amount of talent to be able to do the course, just like with anything else.

    Maybe it's because all the complex formulae look very impressive and hard to understand....:rolleyes:
    So many people who take art and other similar subjects moan about how hard they are. I'm not saying they're not; i was taking Art to GCSE but i dropped it as i was bad and it was wasting alot of my time. However, if so many people know its hard and not respected and yet still take it - you can't really complain. Why did you chose it if you knew this? Surely because you enjoy it, which there is nothing wrong with that, but that starts to show why it is not academic. People who choose it tend to be less inclined towards academic work (even if they're prepared to work more hours on their art).

    As someone else on this thread stated; it is a talent - and a talent i certainly don't possess - but so is being good at rugby or being able to spit really, really far. You can argue about which is most important in life, but if you think that art is better than the academic subjects then why are you arguing for Art to more respected in Academia? "Because it's hard" is not an argument - difficulty and respectability and not always linked.

    It astounds me the number of people who therefore take these "unrespected" subjects and moan about how much work it is. I see people doing badly at my school taking subjects like P.E. and they say how hard they are - i think to myself; why didn't he take the "respected" subjects then if they're easier... oh wait, he did. He was also taking Physics. Now ok, his D in P.E. was bad for the amount of work he put in, but his U in Physics i think is really impressive.

    Well okay - rant over. This wasn't directed entirely at A SoapBubble, sorry if it looked like that. I'm prepared to be attacked by a group of Artists and Photographers :rolleyes:
    Offline

    1
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by schrodinger's cat)
    People who choose it tend to be less inclined towards academic work (even if they're prepared to work more hours on their art).
    That seems to be true for GCSE level but I have seen the exact opposite at A Level. The majority of people I know that did well at Art A Level were also very academic too.

    I know you said "tend to" but it just made me realise that I have encountered the exact opposite.
    Offline

    16
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Hispanic-Impressions)
    That seems to be true for GCSE level but I have seen the exact opposite at A Level. The majority of people I know that did well at Art A Level were also very academic too.
    I know you said "tend to" but it just made me realise that I have encountered the exact opposite.
    Probably because these people are more likely to put in more effort to get a higher grade to complement their other grades.
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by schrodinger's cat)
    As someone else on this thread stated; it is a talent - and a talent i certainly don't possess - but so is being good at rugby or being able to spit really, really far. You can argue about which is most important in life, but if you think that art is better than the academic subjects then why are you arguing for Art to more respected in Academia? "Because it's hard" is not an argument - difficulty and respectability and not always linked.
    It astounds me the number of people who therefore take these "unrespected" subjects and moan about how much work it is. I see people doing badly at my school taking subjects like P.E. and they say how hard they are - i think to myself; why didn't he take the "respected" subjects then if they're easier... oh wait, he did. He was also taking Physics. Now ok, his D in P.E. was bad for the amount of work he put in, but his U in Physics i think is really impressive.

    Well okay - rant over. This wasn't directed entirely at A SoapBubble, sorry if it looked like that. I'm prepared to be attacked by a group of Artists and Photographers :rolleyes:
    it's alright, a nice healthy debate is always good :rolleyes:

    I wasn't necessarily saying that difficulty and respectability are or should be linked, more that I think that universities should consider whether the subject choices that a candidate has made are appropriate for the course that they intend to study at uni, so for example, someone applying to do Art shouldn't need A levels in Math, Further Maths and Physics.

    I think that ALL a level subjects are hard, no matter what they are, although i'm sure that some are harder than others. Although, again doesn't that depend on how an individual's mind works? Someone might find all the complex formulae in Maths and Physics make perfect sense, but find languages near-impossible, and don't know one end of a paintbrush from the other. Personally (please don't anyone jump down my throat for saying this, it's not intended to be anti-physicist or anything) I would find someone who could paint amazingly, or create a sculpture, or could speak another language more "impressive" than someone who can explain the laws of physics. Although that's probably because I'm quite a creative sort of person myself. And i do actually think that being able to understand and explain physics is pretty impressive!
    Offline

    16
    ReputationRep:
    In my opinion, respected subjects often underpin much of what goes on in the world. If people didn't study Physics and Electronics, we wouldn't have all the gadgets we do, whereas if people didn't study Media, we wouldn't really be any worse off.
 
 
 

University open days

  • University of East Anglia
    UEA Mini Open Day Undergraduate
    Fri, 23 Nov '18
  • Norwich University of the Arts
    Undergraduate Open Days Undergraduate
    Fri, 23 Nov '18
  • Edge Hill University
    All Faculties Undergraduate
    Sat, 24 Nov '18
Poll
Black Friday: Yay or Nay?
Help with your A-levels

All the essentials

The adventure begins mug

Student life: what to expect

What it's really like going to uni

Rosette

Essay expert

Learn to write like a pro with our ultimate essay guide.

Uni match

Uni match

Our tool will help you find the perfect course for you

Study planner

Create a study plan

Get your head around what you need to do and when with the study planner tool.

Study planner

Resources by subject

Everything from mind maps to class notes.

Hands typing

Degrees without fees

Discover more about degree-level apprenticeships.

A student doing homework

Study tips from A* students

Students who got top grades in their A-levels share their secrets

Study help links and info

Can you help? Study help unanswered threadsRules and posting guidelines

Groups associated with this forum:

View associated groups

The Student Room, Get Revising and Marked by Teachers are trading names of The Student Room Group Ltd.

Register Number: 04666380 (England and Wales), VAT No. 806 8067 22 Registered Office: International House, Queens Road, Brighton, BN1 3XE

Write a reply...
Reply
Hide
Reputation gems: You get these gems as you gain rep from other members for making good contributions and giving helpful advice.