Doing 4 A levels Watch

~Jinxes~
Badges: 1
Rep:
?
#1
Report Thread starter 12 years ago
#1
deleted
0
reply
Da Bachtopus
Badges: 12
Rep:
?
#2
Report 12 years ago
#2
(Original post by --monty---)
Hello, I would like your opinions on whether to do 4 A levels. Currently I am doing English, History, French, Maths and Critical Thinking AS levels. At the end of the year I will be dropping CT, but do you think I should drop maths as well?

I am hoping to apply to read English or History - would Cambridge see it as an advantage to have the fourth A level even though it is in an unrelated subject? I am capable of getting an A grade but I would really like to just give it up and concentrate on doing some more reading, as maths homework takes me a long time and is getting boring!

What do y'all think?
Thanks xxx
For English or History it shouldn't make a difference, but if you do continue it they may very well make it part of a conditional offer. If you're not enjoying it then I'd advise you to drop it. Doing further relevant reading will help your application more than having another A at A-level.

On the other hand, Maths may come in useful in the long run , e.g. looking for holiday work.
0
reply
kellywood_5
Badges: 15
Rep:
?
#3
Report 12 years ago
#3
I'd drop it if it's getting boring. Doing 4 A2s is a lot of work and requires a lot of motivation even if you enjoy all your subjects. If you don't, it'll be much harder to force yourself to put the work in, and as the above poster mentioned, there's always a chance you'll get an offer based on all 4 subjects. 3 A-levels and an AS (or in your case, 3 A-levels and 2 ASs) is plenty even for Oxbridge, and for English or history, wider reading would be much more beneficial to your application than A-level maths.
0
reply
Jigglypuff
Badges: 14
Rep:
?
#4
Report 12 years ago
#4
In my opinion, I think you should give it up and focus on extra reading. You will have less schoolwork, which will be an advantage before both the interview (more time for extra reading- I know I would have appreciated having less homework and coursework that week, when all I wanted to do was read) and before exams. If you are confident you can get AAAA, go for it, but don't do it simply for Cambridge and bore yourself to death for a year.
0
reply
Sejanus
Badges: 7
Rep:
?
#5
Report 12 years ago
#5
I did 4 A-levels: History, Geography, Chemsitry and Latin. My offer specified I had to get As in History and Latin, plus one other subject. They blatantly weren't fussed about Chem, but couldn't actually say it. I dunno if it was an advantage, but the only reason I did it was cos I was interested in Chemistry. If you aren't too bothered, drop the other subject and do more reading.
0
reply
popop12345
Badges: 0
Rep:
?
#6
Report 12 years ago
#6
The only argument against what most of the people have been saying is that it could help your application slightly, when i was in your position i probably would have kept it ,.. ie anything to improve my chance slightly, but it is a lot of work and for most, if not all colleges it wont make a difference!!
0
reply
Jan
Badges: 10
Rep:
?
#7
Report 12 years ago
#7
a) they will not give you offer based on 4 a-levels with 99% certainty..more and above, they would be very likely to exclude maths form your offer

b) improve your application? not at all, I would say

c) if you feel you would rather drop it, definitely go for it - for subjects like english having maths will not help your chances, and if you are doing AS maths, you can easily calculate how much time will you be able to devote to further reading and thinking about your subject and what you read having dropped A2 maths.

good luck.
0
reply
coldfish
Badges: 12
Rep:
?
#8
Report 12 years ago
#8
(Original post by Honza)
a) they will not give you offer based on 4 a-levels with 99% certainty..more and above, they would be very likely to exclude maths form your offer
You don't have a clue what they'll do. It's true that most offers aren't more than AAA, but you don't know the probability and you certainly don't know what an admissions tutor is likely to exclude. afaik excluding subjects (apart from GS etc) from offers is rare for the humanities -- I've never heard of it happening.

Basically, be a little more conservative when making predictions about stuff you have very little clue about.
0
reply
Chumbaniya
Badges: 16
Rep:
?
#9
Report 12 years ago
#9
It depends how you think it will affect you if you decide to carry on with maths. If it might affect how you do in other subjects, it's not worth it. If you're confident to carry it on, though, it certainly won't hurt to have an extra A level, and while it's not much use for History or English degrees, it's different to your others subjects and so demonstrates that you have a good range of academic skills. Since maths is a "hard" A level, it's going to be a bonus even if it's not involved in your degree course.
0
reply
MadNatSci
Badges: 12
Rep:
?
#10
Report 12 years ago
#10
If you want to carry on with all four and you can get four As, then by all means carry on with the four. But it sounds to me like you're not really that keen - in which case I'd drop Maths. Why make your last year at school uncomfortable for yourself? Cambridge won't care: maths is unrelated to your course and they have a big thing about making sure people with 3 A levels aren't disadvantaged (and Geoff Parks recently had a big rant that people are taking too many). So really don't take it just for the sake of Cambridge! However, as other people have touched on, maths A level may make you more employable in future.

It really has to come down to what you want to do!
0
reply
NickiM
Badges: 2
Rep:
?
#11
Report 12 years ago
#11
I emailed Cambridge about a week ago, because I wanted to know whether it would be preferable to do 3 or 4 A Levels for A2. They said that 3 was fine, and they did not discrimate between people who had 3 or 4.
0
reply
xx_ambellina_xx
Badges: 12
Rep:
?
#12
Report 12 years ago
#12
(Original post by --monty---)
Hello, I would like your opinions on whether to do 4 A levels. Currently I am doing English, History, French, Maths and Critical Thinking AS levels. At the end of the year I will be dropping CT, but do you think I should drop maths as well?

I am hoping to apply to read English or History - would Cambridge see it as an advantage to have the fourth A level even though it is in an unrelated subject? I am capable of getting an A grade but I would really like to just give it up and concentrate on doing some more reading, as maths homework takes me a long time and is getting boring!

What do y'all think?
Thanks xxx
Hey, I'm an historian at Trinity Hall. Generally the offers seem to be AAA for history (although one bloke at Tit Hall in my year got an AAAA offer), and any more isn't common. The norm certainly seems to be three A levels, some have 4, but generally speaking it won't be a disadvantage.
0
reply
Gwawrrrrrrrrrrr
Badges: 0
#13
Report 12 years ago
#13
Those were the exact same A-Levels that I took (with AS German); I'm now a third year historian. Whilst I would agree with the people who have said that three A-Levels as opposed to four wouldn't prejudice an application, I'd advise that it's sometimes helpful to look beyond the application stage and keep in mind that the usefulness of A-Levels doesn't necessarily end with an offer from Cambridge (or indeed, anywhere else). For me, doing A-Level Maths turned out to be a wise decision because I've been able to make use of what I've learned, particularly in the statistical work that I did for my dissertation. I'm not trying to sway you either way (for example, if you plumped for English rather than History, then I don't imagine that an A-Level in Maths would prove particularly helpful in contributing towards your degree, though it might expand your options when you come to look for a job afterwards); but sometimes it helps to keep in mind the bigger picture

Best of luck whatever you decide!
0
reply
xx_ambellina_xx
Badges: 12
Rep:
?
#14
Report 12 years ago
#14
(Original post by coldfish)
You don't have a clue what they'll do. It's true that most offers aren't more than AAA, but you don't know the probability and you certainly don't know what an admissions tutor is likely to exclude. afaik excluding subjects (apart from GS etc) from offers is rare for the humanities -- I've never heard of it happening.

Basically, be a little more conservative when making predictions about stuff you have very little clue about.
Exactly, for History and English, a fair few people I know have science-y A Levels (myself included), and all of our subjects were included in our offer. As long as you have an A in the subject you're applying for, they're not likely to stipulate anything else.
0
reply
Jigglypuff
Badges: 14
Rep:
?
#15
Report 12 years ago
#15
I forgot to add also that maybe taking AEAs in the relevant subject(s) would be more useful.
0
reply
Luciex
Badges: 0
#16
Report 12 years ago
#16
I found myself in a very similar situation to you this time last year, doing french, english, maths and rs plus critical thinking at AS, while applying to do Philosophy. I decided not to drop a subject, but that was mainly because I couldn't decide which one I'd drop, and perhaps if there was one that i was REALLY disliking (like you say you do) i would have dropped it. Although doing four A levels IS a lot of work, at the same time I'm happy with the choice I made because it has given me that extra security when I'm trying to get my AAA offer, in that if for whatever reasons one of my subjects goes spectacularly wrong, I'm still on track for my offer. At the end of the day, it's difficult to say whether it would be better to do 4 in terms of how Cambridge look at your application; it paid off for me but then I know hundreds of people who only do 3 that got offers too! I'd also agree with a lot of the previous posters who said it might be better to drop one and do more subject-related reading because when all's said and done, Cambridge are mainly interested with how passionate you are about the specific subject you're applying for. Sorry if I've rambled and this hasn't been very helpful!
Good luck with whatever you decide
0
reply
music<3
Badges: 0
Rep:
?
#17
Report 12 years ago
#17
hey I was in a similar situation also, had 4 a levels and had applied for music at cambridge. prior to the interview I dropped one of my subjects as it was unrelated, so as I could concentrate on music, as I have other exams outside of the A level course to prepare for in relation to it and felt that it would benefit me more. I explained all this to them and in the end was given an offer so obviously not having 4 makes no difference! In the end they want to see dedication to the subject you have chosen and if you drop an unrelated subject so you are able to put your efforts into the subject you wish to read at Cambridge then you cannot be at a disadvantage! xx hope this has helped
0
reply
miss.e
Badges: 0
#18
Report 12 years ago
#18
(Original post by --monty---)
Hello, I would like your opinions on whether to do 4 A levels. Currently I am doing English, History, French, Maths and Critical Thinking AS levels. At the end of the year I will be dropping CT, but do you think I should drop maths as well?

I am hoping to apply to read English or History - would Cambridge see it as an advantage to have the fourth A level even though it is in an unrelated subject? I am capable of getting an A grade but I would really like to just give it up and concentrate on doing some more reading, as maths homework takes me a long time and is getting boring!

What do y'all think?
Thanks xxx
i thought about doing 4 alevels (plus general studies which would have made it 5) but i didnt and now im glad. Ive got a friend who does 4 and copes very well, but doing 3 has taken the pressure off and let me enjoy my last year at school. Admittedly i do all sciences which involve more contact time and less reading than subjects such as english, but i still got offers from all my unis and cambridge didnt mind that i didnt have 4 subjects. They are looking for enthusiam in the subject you want to study further, so unless you will enjoy maths and want to do the work for it, i'd say stick to just 3.
0
reply
mfb3000
Badges: 0
Rep:
?
#19
Report 12 years ago
#19
I'm doing Biology, Chemistry, Maths + Further Maths and Physics at AS at the moment (doing A2 maths this year), and I've been advised not to drop any subjects for next year at least until I've applied to Cam and got an offer or not - if I get an offer then I'll be asking to see if I can drop Bio. Sounds like I'm gonna enjoy next year :s
0
reply
Aired
Badges: 1
Rep:
?
#20
Report 12 years ago
#20
(Original post by Lewi)
I'm doing Biology, Chemistry, Maths + Further Maths and Physics at AS at the moment (doing A2 maths this year), and I've been advised not to drop any subjects for next year at least until I've applied to Cam and got an offer or not - if I get an offer then I'll be asking to see if I can drop Bio. Sounds like I'm gonna enjoy next year :s
What are you applying for? I'm guessing it's a science subject, so if you apply without dropping any subjects there's a chance that you'll be asked for 4 A's since all of your subjects will be relevant.
0
reply
X

Quick Reply

Attached files
Write a reply...
Reply
new posts
Latest
My Feed

See more of what you like on
The Student Room

You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

Personalise

University open days

  • University of Cambridge
    Undergraduate Open Day Undergraduate
    Thu, 4 Jul '19
  • University of Cambridge
    Undergraduate Open Day Undergraduate
    Fri, 5 Jul '19

Are you chained to your phone?

Yes (109)
19.82%
Yes, but I'm trying to cut back (223)
40.55%
Nope, not that interesting (218)
39.64%

Watched Threads

View All