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    Hello everyone it's getting closer and closer to the end of my GCSE education and the start of my sixth form education and I'm having a slight problem deciding on the last A-level. Here are my current decisions:

    Maths (up to A2)
    Further Maths (up to A2)
    Physics (up to A2)
    Philosophy

    I'm hoping to apply for either a maths & computer science or a maths & physics joint degree at Cambridge, aiming high I know but it's always worth a shot! Anyway I've looked long and hard at both courses and the above A-level choices seemed to be the most suitable, as well as being subjects I really enjoy.

    So here's the problem. I want to do a biology a-level on top of the above list, but i'm wondering if this will create too much of a workload for me. Will taking biology help with my chances of getting into the course I want? The other thing that might be important to mention is with my current A-level choices, only 2 of the 5 possible lesson "slots" are taken up, whereas the majority of the people at my school have 4 of the 5, which leaves me having a lot more free time in school (further maths is studied during the maths lessons, philosophy will be a part-time night class at a college). Hopefully you can all help me to decided whether or not do take a biology a-level or if there is another subject which you feel would benefit me more to take on top of the list instead of biology I'm open to suggestions and obviously if it's a subject I'm enthusiastic about I could consider it (DT Resistant Materials was one of the considerations instead of biology, however I don't think it would hold much relevance to the course I want to apply for), again I'd need to know if it would create too much workload, or if it would be worth the extra workload.

    Thanks everyone in advance for you help,
    Marc
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    I think your choices so far sound very good for a CompSci/Maths course, but I don't know if all universities would accept Maths & Further Maths as two completely separate A-levels. Biology is a traditional and rigourous subject, but it's not particularly relevant to Computer science or Maths. Chemistry is usually regarded the more respected out of the two and it seems to be deemed quite useful; have you considered Chem? Or perhaps Computing? In any case you've got the requirements

    Take a look here at the Cambridge Admissions website:
    http://www.cam.ac.uk/admissions/unde...uirements.html

    According to this website, Maths, Further Maths, Physics are the most useful, followed by Chemistry or Computing (perhaps Electronics). In the end though if you have the requirements it's better to take subjects you enjoy.
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    Hi Excalibur thanks for your reply I've found it a great help!

    Chemistry does indeed look a good option and one I'll certainly consider it to take with the other A-levels. Thanks also for that link, it's helpful seeing what the colleges are looking for.
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    You seem to be picking subjects that you think Cambridge will like, rather than subjects you'll like!! I'm not saying you shouldn't give any consideration to getting into university, but it shouldn't be the sole basis of deciding your subjects. You have to enjoy them, or you'll never do well in them!
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    Dont worry :p: I love maths and physics, else I wouldn't be hoping to apply for a maths/physics course! =D The reason why I've posted this topic is not because I'm letting the uni requirements change my last a-level, but because I want to know if I can justify the extra workload I appreciate the concern though! Thanks!
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    if you took chemistry as well you'd probably have a much better chance of getting onto the cambridge natural science course, ive heard they tend to favour people doing chemistry and physics to those doing 1 science or chem/phys and biology.
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    As Excalibur pointed out, maths and further maths aren't always regarded as 2 separate subjects by universities and most students who take further maths take 5 subjects in the first year instead of the usual 4. Taking 5 subjects would be a lot of work, but obviously maths and further maths will be very similar and I'd imagine there'd be some overlap with physics as well, so I think you could handle it. As for the fifth subject, I agree chemistry would probably be best, but go with biology if you'd prefer that because you have the essential subjects already and you need to enjoy what you're studying.
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    I thought for maths & comp science and engineering, f.Maths is treated as a separate A level. Its only if you apply for something totally different eg Law, Economic, it would not count.

    Well biology has much more work in it than chemistry imo. Chemistry has a relatively smaller syllabus and out of the sciences, is the broadest in terms of the options of degrees it opens to you. It depends if you like it or not though. If you do you'll probably find it easy to pick up. Lots of people struggle with Chem but if you genuinely like it go for it.
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    You may not want to set your heart on mathematics and computing at cambridge, the course is currently under review and according to one of the compsci lecturers the review isn't going well and the course may not be available next year.
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    Thank you all for your advice and input, found it all very useful!

    I enjoy all the sciences and find them easy to cope with (provided I read up on them now and again), so I think I may go for both biology and chemistry. I should be able to cope with it, especially due to the way I'm doing the A-levels (with further maths being done during maths and philosophy outside of school), I hope I can anyway!

    datr: Really? What about the maths/physics course? I am looking more towards that course....

    Thanks again everyone!
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    I haven't heard anything about the maths/physics course and it's not listed as under review on the site so I assume that that course is safe.

    I'm not sure if you are aware or not but the maths/physics and maths/computing courses only last one year after which you have to decide either to do straight maths or straight physics and you'll be expected to catch up on the work you missed for which ever subject you choose over the summer holiday.

    If you really want to do a combined degree for the whole 3/4 years you may be better of at Oxford.
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    Don't set your heart on what your going to continue on to A2, unless they are esential...you may find ones harder than the other and you decide to drop something else.
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    (Original post by kellywood_5)
    As Excalibur pointed out, maths and further maths aren't always regarded as 2 separate subjects by universities and most students who take further maths take 5 subjects in the first year instead of the usual 4.
    i thought it was counted as two? and its highly recommended by universities if you are going into a degree involving maths, i thought with oxbridge it was essential? or maybe just maths and STEP...
    the fact that it was recommended was one of the reasons i decided to take it on as a fifth AS-level, but i didnt want to drop the rest because i was already half way through the other courses!

    (Original post by kellywood_5)
    Taking 5 subjects would be a lot of work, but obviously maths and further maths will be very similar and I'd imagine there'd be some overlap with physics as well, so I think you could handle it.
    some modules in maths do overlap slightly i think (mechanics topics). maths and f.maths are obv slightly similar, but they shouldnt be considered lightly because they are both maths so you can handle it. f.maths is more challenging and in my experience, it takes up just as much time if not more than normal maths.

    (Original post by kellywood_5)
    As for the fifth subject, I agree chemistry would probably be best, but go with biology if you'd prefer that because you have the essential subjects already and you need to enjoy what you're studying.
    i agree with this. if you enjoy chemistry go for it, but again dont enter into this lightly. i did just cos it "fitted better with maths" and i hated physics at GCSE (mechanics maths modules will be fun then :rolleyes:), and i havent enjoyed it much, well hardly any of our group has! but you sound like you enjoy the sciences, so both are good choices, do which one you think you would prefer!

    (Original post by MarcD)
    I enjoy all the sciences and find them easy to cope with (provided I read up on them now and again), so I think I may go for both biology and chemistry. I should be able to cope with it, especially due to the way I'm doing the A-levels (with further maths being done during maths and philosophy outside of school), I hope I can anyway!
    so how many are you planning on doing?!?

    bio/ chem/ maths/ further maths/physics/philosophy?!
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    (Original post by Loz2402)
    i thought it was counted as two? and its highly recommended by universities if you are going into a degree involving maths, i thought with oxbridge it was essential? or maybe just maths and STEP...
    the fact that it was recommended was one of the reasons i decided to take it on as a fifth AS-level, but i didnt want to drop the rest because i was already half way through the other courses!
    It is highly recommended/essential for mathsy courses at top universities, so if that's what you want to apply for, it should be fine. I just meant that because you're basically doing 2 maths A-levels rather than doing 2 separate A-levels, they might not always be seen as 2 different subjects and most of the people on TSR doing maths and further maths seem to have at least 2 other A2s to go with them.
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    It's usually easier to drop a subject than to pick one up later. If you manage your time effectively from the start then you'll stand a good chance of being able to cope, as you won't have to cram madly near exams.
 
 
 
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