What are generally thought as the hardest degrees? Watch

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User990473
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I have seen a few threads like this so I've tried to pinpoint exactly what I mean while also being aware that there is still room for the decision to be subjective.

In my mind, I split it into two different types of difficulty: Conceptual difficulty and workload.

Some courses may come naturally to people but, for instance, maths is generally going to be seen as more conceptually difficult than management studies while medicine is going to have a higher volume of work to keep up with.

I am curious what degree you think is the most conceptually difficult. To me, the list start of something like this:

Mathematics
Physics
Engineering
Computer Science
Chemistry

I think I perceive the degrees with high maths content as the hardest but that's just from the course reputations. What do you guys think?
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(Original post by textbookloser)
Medicine, dentistry, neuroscience?
You obviously didn't read the OP. Or if you did, you didn't understand the point.
They are some of the hardest to get in to, have high workloads but are not conceptually difficult relative to math etc -- in my opinion anyway.

If you honestly believe that the stuff you learn is much more complicated than in, say, chemistry then I apologise.
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Birkenhead
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Don't underestimate the difficulty of arts degrees. Just because they don't involve maths doesn't mean they can't also be very challenging. It must be pretty hard to constantly be providing lengthy and novel interpretations of texts which have been critiqued for centuries by others far better than oneself
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Rascacielos
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I'm biased, I know, but law is often conceptually impossible and the workload is intense. I would certainly put it as one of the hardest degrees - demonstrated by the fact that employers are so keen on law graduates.

(Original post by Tuerin)
Don't underestimate the difficulty of arts degrees. Just because they don't involve maths doesn't mean they can't also be very challenging. It must be pretty hard to constantly be providing lengthy and novel interpretations of texts which have been critiqued for centuries by others far better than oneself
I agree.
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(Original post by Tuerin)
Don't underestimate the difficulty of arts degrees. Just because they don't involve maths doesn't mean they can't also be very challenging. It must be pretty hard to constantly be providing lengthy and novel interpretations of texts which have been critiqued for centuries by others far better than oneself
I suppose I probably don't consider the arts as rigorous but you are right. I can imagine that after hundreds of years of people writing about Shakespeare's works that after a while there is not much else to say!
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Eloades11
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Surely we can't answer this unless we've done all the degrees for ourselves, plus other universities will have varying difficulties of their degrees in retrospect. Some people may hate exams and research projects, others will hate coursework and essay writing, making some degree's harder for them but easier for others.
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BsC Timetravel, no ones cracked it yet xD

on a serious note though id say its more down to oppinion, for example I am really comfortable with most computing related subjects, but id find doing well in artistic courses really hard, where as to some that would be second nature.
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(Original post by Rascacielos)
I'm biased, I know, but law is often conceptually impossible and the workload is intense. I would certainly put it as one of the hardest degrees - demonstrated by the fact that employers are so keen on law graduates.

I was hoping someone would say law!
Lots of people regard law as a difficult one, and it is. Maybe a different type of difficulty to that of maths etc, but it's still hard.
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(Original post by Eloades11)
Surely we can't answer this unless we've done all the degrees for ourselves, plus other universities will have varying difficulties of their degrees in retrospect. Some people may hate exams and research projects, others will hate coursework and essay writing, making some degree's harder for them but easier for others.
Not 100% accurately, no, but I'm sure we can get the gist of the general consensus.
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(Original post by LukeM90)
BsC Timetravel, no ones cracked it yet xD

on a serious note though id say its more down to oppinion, for example I am really comfortable with most computing related subjects, but id find doing well in artistic courses really hard, where as to some that would be second nature.
So your pretty comfortable with Combinatorics and cryptography?
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(Original post by Occams Chainsaw)
Computer Science
Depends on the uni. At good universities it's quite difficult as it's much more theory based but as you go down the rankings it becomes more of vocational education
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(Original post by dkdeath)
Depends on the uni. At good universities it's quite difficult as it's much more theory based but as you go down the rankings it becomes more of vocational education
Yep. I agree with this.
Which is why I questioned the guy who said he is pretty comfortable with anything computer science related. I figure he probably didn't go to Cambridge Comp Sci Tripos.
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(Original post by Occams Chainsaw)
You obviously didn't read the OP. Or if you did, you didn't understand the point. Or if you did, your an idiot!
They are some of the hardest to get in to, have high workloads but are not conceptually difficult relative to math etc -- in my opinion anyway.

If you honestly believe that the stuff you learn is much more complicated than in, say, chemistry then I apologise.
Don't go calling people idiots if you can't use the correct form of you're



As for medicine, the fact that you have to know the entire anatomy of the human body in really very fine detail, as well as incredible knowledge of medicines and drugs as well the length of time it takes to complete your degree suggests it's certainly not simple. To dismiss all that is churlish at best.
Don't go calling people idiots because they disagree with your opinion.
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(Original post by Occams Chainsaw)
So your pretty comfortable with Combinatorics and cryptography?
"Comfortable with most" doesnt mean its going to suddenly make me change my career path because one or two aspects of the subject or havent covered others (which probably are not relative to my aspirations anyway) put me off or I find difficult

to me I would consider somthing ive never even heard of or covered ALOT harder (obviously) like some law degree or what have you
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(Original post by Occams Chainsaw)
Not 100% accurately, no, but I'm sure we can get the gist of the general consensus.
Fair enough, I'm doing a Biomedical Science degree but I wouldn't say it was the hardest, probably because I enjoy the labs and reading/topics. I massively struggled with learning French though during A-levels, so I'd go with a language degree as the hardest.
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(Original post by Eloades11)
Fair enough, I'm doing a Biomedical Science degree but I wouldn't say it was the hardest, probably because I enjoy the labs and reading/topics. I massively struggled with learning French though during A-levels, so I'd go with a language degree as the hardest.
Cheers. By the way -- I love your picture!
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(Original post by Occams Chainsaw)
Cheers. By the way -- I love your picture!
Thanks PRSOM though
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(Original post by Eloades11)
Thanks PRSOM though
I have absolutely no idea what that means!
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(Original post by Drewski)
Don't go calling people idiots if you can't use the correct form of you're



As for medicine, the fact that you have to know the entire anatomy of the human body in really very fine detail, as well as incredible knowledge of medicines and drugs as well the length of time it takes to complete your degree suggests it's certainly not simple. To dismiss all that is churlish at best.
Don't go calling people idiots because they disagree with your opinion.
If you'd read the OP's post he asked which were the most conceptually difficult. Medicine is not particularly conceptually difficult - if you can handle A level concepts easily enough then with a bit of work understanding anything in Medicine can be done - the anatomy and pharmacology is a huge volume of work and understanding how all these different things work together is a massive exercise in holding lots of things in your head at the same time, but it's not as conceptually difficult as degree level chemistry or maths.

Although I agree with the your/you're comment...
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Try chemistry. Its hard

Having said that, I can say from living with medics, that the theoretical content of medicine is not that challenging compared to the hard sciences (biology, chemistry, physics, and their derivatives) and the mathematical subjects (maths, comp sci, etc). The challenge with medicine does not come from the workload either as this seems to be on level with every other degree (Yes, arts have the same workload as sciences. I am saying this as a chem student).
The difficulty with medicine seems to come from all the placements etc and how that consumes a lot of time.

Law is also supposed to be hard, and I imagine this is for a similar reason.


So I guess you need to define what you mean by hard? - stress levels, definately medicine, law, and other high profile "vocational degrees". As for subject matter, you are looking at the hard sciences and engineering.


If by hard you mean sheer workload, however anyone would like to argue, as far as I can tell it fluctuates to a very equal level in all degrees.
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