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Is it normal not to know what course/career you would like to do, in year 12? Watch

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    I'm currently in Year 12 and sitting my AS Levels, yet I still have no specific idea of what career choice I would like to progress to, or even a Uni course.

    Is this normal? and are any of you Year 12's in the same boat?

    I currently do: Biology, Chemistry, Maths and English Lit. I'd say I'm definitely more stronger in my "science" subjects than the English Lit.

    I've looked into uni courses such as, Medicine, Biomedical Science, Biochemistry,etc... (not sure if you can see a pattern there haha).

    I would really love to work with children - so that's partly the reason why I was looking into medicine (possibly going into Paediatrics).

    If any of you guys are going through similar things and have any suggestions aswell, would deffo help!
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    (Original post by st1997)
    I'm currently in Year 12 and sitting my AS Levels, yet I still have no specific idea of what career choice I would like to progress to, or even a Uni course.

    Is this normal? and are any of you Year 12's in the same boat?

    I currently do: Biology, Chemistry, Maths and English Lit. I'd say I'm definitely more stronger in my "science" subjects than the English Lit.

    I've looked into uni courses such as, Medicine, Biomedical Science, Biochemistry,etc... (not sure if you can see a pattern there haha).

    I would really love to work with children - so that's partly the reason why I was looking into medicine (possibly going into Paediatrics).

    If any of you guys are going through similar things and have any suggestions aswell, would deffo help!
    Definitely normal. Until a month-ish before I sent off my university applications I wasn't entirely sure. I did the same subjects as you last year, but was stuck between something like Biochemistry and English Literature. I decided on English Literature but am still unsure on career ideas.

    A lot of people find it hard to choose their degree and equally, many don't have a clue what career they'd like to do until they explore their options in university. Don't worry too much.

    It might be worth looking in some university prospectuses to see which modules in those degrees sound good to you though. However, I think you'd be surprised how many are quite similar or simply overlap. Also think what you currently enjoy - I realised that I actually didn't really love the Biochemistry sections of Biology so Biochemistry probably wasn't the best option for me. Remember it's also possible to swap once you start a degree if you want to, provided you don't leave it too late!

    Really don't stress yourself out about it! Good luck!
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    (Original post by BeccyW)
    Definitely normal. Until a month-ish before I sent off my university applications I wasn't entirely sure. I did the same subjects as you last year, but was stuck between something like Biochemistry and English Literature. I decided on English Literature but am still unsure on career ideas.

    A lot of people find it hard to choose their degree and equally, many don't have a clue what career they'd like to do until they explore their options in university. Don't worry too much.

    It might be worth looking in some university prospectuses to see which modules in those degrees sound good to you though. However, I think you'd be surprised how many are quite similar or simply overlap. Also think what you currently enjoy - I realised that I actually didn't really love the Biochemistry sections of Biology so Biochemistry probably wasn't the best option for me. Remember it's also possible to swap once you start a degree if you want to, provided you don't leave it too late!

    Really don't stress yourself out about it! Good luck!
    That's really reassuring! I have looked at quite a few prospectuses, it doesn't help when you fall in love with a university and either the course doesn't really sound right for you or the grades required are so high!

    If you don't mind me asking, what were your grades at AS and how was the whole application process for you?
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    (Original post by st1997)
    That's really reassuring! I have looked at quite a few prospectuses, it doesn't help when you fall in love with a university and either the course doesn't really sound right for you or the grades required are so high!

    If you don't mind me asking, what were your grades at AS and how was the whole application process for you?
    I got high As in English Literature and Biology, and Bs in Chemistry and Maths. I dropped maths after AS (and considering I really am not naturally gifted at maths, I was quite happy with that B!) and am retaking all my chemistry modules as I got a lot better marks in the mocks than the actual thing so am hoping to be lucky second time around!

    The application process is not as scary as schools like to make out to you, I've found. They try to push you into applying as soon as you can - like October time - because in some places it gives you a very slight advantage (though a lot of unis wait until January before giving out too many offers now, it seems) but I would say make sure you've done your research and make sure you're happy with your choices before taking the plunge. I ultimately am happy with where I am looking to firm and insure, but I do think that some of the places I applied to I would not have applied to in retrospect.

    I very much agree with the course/uni/grades dilemma. I would suggest making sure you have a good range of grades so you have a kind of "best case scenario uni", some "perfectly feasible ones" and maybe a "things didn't go quite to plan" one or two so that when it comes to firming and insuring, you have some viable options (something I wish I had heeded slightly more) and ultimately, the course is what you are studying, so make sure it's something you like!

    Is there a particular place that you are agonising over with regards to imperfect course and high grades, or is this just a general observation that uni choices are sometimes hard?
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    Considering that most of the population becomes frictionally unemployed at some point, it's more than reasonable not to have a full idea on what you wish to do for 20-40 years of your life


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    (Original post by Jkizer)
    Considering that most of the population becomes frictionally unemployed at some point, it's more than reasonable not to have a full idea on what you wish to do for 20-40 years of your life


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    Of course! But its just the knowing that the time will come and I'll have to choose a course and that's what I'd be doing for the next 20+ years of my life. It's quite scary.
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    (Original post by st1997)
    Of course! But its just the knowing that the time will come and I'll have to choose a course and that's what I'd be doing for the next 20+ years of my life. It's quite scary.
    Yeah I was in your shoes last year and it's not fun.

    After your exams, you will LOADS of spare time since no one can really be asses to go full out on A2, usually your school gets careers/university people to do talks which can be really good .

    I remember just spending a lot of frees looking around on university websites / prospectuses / subject guides / general information about courses that particularly interested me. You can learn a lot of information about what the course will teach you, careers etc. You will have a much clearer idea once your school does a few talks and you have free time to focus a bit on your interests and aspirations .

    You got very nice subjects which can expand to all sorts such as social care and nursing as well. I'm sure you will find something that suits you goal of helping children


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    You're like my sister She's in Year 12. She's never been quite sure, although I think she may go into engineering :yep:
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    (Original post by BeccyW)
    I got high As in English Literature and Biology, and Bs in Chemistry and Maths. I dropped maths after AS (and considering I really am not naturally gifted at maths, I was quite happy with that B!) and am retaking all my chemistry modules as I got a lot better marks in the mocks than the actual thing so am hoping to be lucky second time around!

    The application process is not as scary as schools like to make out to you, I've found. They try to push you into applying as soon as you can - like October time - because in some places it gives you a very slight advantage (though a lot of unis wait until January before giving out too many offers now, it seems) but I would say make sure you've done your research and make sure you're happy with your choices before taking the plunge. I ultimately am happy with where I am looking to firm and insure, but I do think that some of the places I applied to I would not have applied to in retrospect.

    I very much agree with the course/uni/grades dilemma. I would suggest making sure you have a good range of grades so you have a kind of "best case scenario uni", some "perfectly feasible ones" and maybe a "things didn't go quite to plan" one or two so that when it comes to firming and insuring, you have some viable options (something I wish I had heeded slightly more) and ultimately, the course is what you are studying, so make sure it's something you like!

    Is there a particular place that you are agonising over with regards to imperfect course and high grades, or is this just a general observation that uni choices are sometimes hard?
    That's some very helpful advice! And those AS results are great - congratulations! What exam boards were you on? In my mocks in December I got A for Bio, B's for Chem and Maths and a C for Eng Lit so I'm definitely trying to push that C up. Have you got any advice on how to prepare for these exams? Especially Eng Lit? I'm on Edexcel and we're doing the "Struggle for Identity" unit.

    Well, I've been to the UCAS convention a few weeks ago and it was definitely an eye opener at just how many people there are in my year - tbh it scares me quite a lot. I've been looking at certain medicine courses because it really does interest me but I definitely have to do a lot more research into the various different courses available (and from what I've seen the competition is already so high!).

    In some courses, for example Biomedical Sciences, I feel like I could be quite restricted career-wise - i.e working in labs (which doesn't really interest me, if I'm honest) and becoming a Bio/Chem teacher. Saying that though, I've applied for a summer course at St George's University for Biomedical Science so hopefully that will give me a bit more of an insight of the course.
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    I'm about to finish my first year of uni, and I'm still not sure what I want to study at uni.
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    (Original post by Jkizer)
    Yeah I was in your shoes last year and it's not fun.

    After your exams, you will LOADS of spare time since no one can really be asses to go full out on A2, usually your school gets careers/university people to do talks which can be really good .

    I remember just spending a lot of frees looking around on university websites / prospectuses / subject guides / general information about courses that particularly interested me. You can learn a lot of information about what the course will teach you, careers etc. You will have a much clearer idea once your school does a few talks and you have free time to focus a bit on your interests and aspirations .

    You got very nice subjects which can expand to all sorts such as social care and nursing as well. I'm sure you will find something that suits you goal of helping children


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    Thank you, I hope so!

    What course did you choose in the end?
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    (Original post by st1997)
    That's some very helpful advice! And those AS results are great - congratulations! What exam boards were you on? In my mocks in December I got A for Bio, B's for Chem and Maths and a C for Eng Lit so I'm definitely trying to push that C up. Have you got any advice on how to prepare for these exams? Especially Eng Lit? I'm on Edexcel and we're doing the "Struggle for Identity" unit.

    Well, I've been to the UCAS convention a few weeks ago and it was definitely an eye opener at just how many people there are in my year - tbh it scares me quite a lot. I've been looking at certain medicine courses because it really does really interest me but I definitely have to do a lot more research into the various different courses available (and from what I've seen already the competition is already so high!).

    In some courses, for example Biomedical Sciences, I feel like I could be quite restricted career-wise - i.e working in labs (which doesn't really interest me, if I'm honest) and becoming a Bio/Chem teacher. Saying that though, I've applied for a summer course at St George's University for Biomedical Science so hopefully that will give me a bit more of an insight of the course.
    Thank you! Well done on your mock grades as well! I'm sure with a bit of work you'll get that C up no trouble!

    I am with AQA for Chemistry and OCR for Biology and English. Exam-wise, as dull as this sounds, I do find writing revision notes out again and again helpful - condensing them each time as you remember more until you literally just have a list of bullet points to remember on each topic because the detail is memorised. It helps me a little if I use coloured felt tips because I can sort of remember the colours I wrote in, as strange as that sounds. Also past papers! For OCR biology (not sure about other exam boards) they are very specific with the phrases they credit. It is worth being familiar with the kinds of questions they ask, the kind of responses they want and what you are awarded the marks for. Definitely past papers are a good idea.

    English-wise, I'd say make sure you are well acquainted with your texts first off. Whether that's re-reading the text before the exam or just using sparknotes (actually has some pretty good stuff sometimes) then I'd definitely do that. I also find it helpful to have a small list of quotes and critical quotes which are helpful and can be applied almost regardless of what question comes up. That way, you won't ever be sat in the exam like "oh god, I can't remember any quotes that could work with this question." Also, try and pull your grade up as much as you can in your coursework if you can. It's always nice to go into an English exam and think "it's okay - I already have a bunch of marks under my belt, so let's just do as well as I can here!"

    Ahh, good old UCAS conventions! I think I pretty much broke my back carrying all those prospectuses back from mine! Don't worry too much about other people. Remember - so many of them are going to be going for completely different things to you. Of course, some of them ARE your competition, but I found even at interviews and things where you are literally going for the same places on a course that there is such a sense of solidarity. People genuinely do seem to sort of club together and try and help one another out! All you can do is do your best!

    I think, if you're unsure career-wise, it might be worth looking where people who do certain courses end up going. Quite often you find it on the degree pages on uni websites and sites like unistats, often in like a pie-chart if I remember correctly. Not all bio/chem related careers are lab-based, and if it turns out after your degree you feel like you don't want to do something practical and science-related, there are many many many careers that are not specific as to which degree they require you to have. Some jobs just want you to have a degree as proof of independence, hard-work, numerical skills, communication - all those kind of things - and don't mind too much what it is, so having a science degree would not just restrict you to a lab by any means!

    Good job on getting into the summer course though. It gives you some valuable experience to help you make decisions, and also is something that will also look good on your personal statement (they love proof of interest in the subject outside of the classroom) so this is like a win-win, really!
 
 
 
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