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    Hi there,

    I am have just finished my AS-Levels and waiting for my results. I am studying Maths, Physics, Chemistry and Biology. I want to study Physics at university and so I have a choice to make. First, lets assume that I want to apply to uni's like Cambridge and Imperial. My school said they would allow me to do Further Maths next year as an AS but I would need to drop a subject, which I have chosen to be Biology. Should I drop Biology or should I keep it and not do Further Maths?
    I know Further Maths is not essential for doing Physics at uni, but is it better to get 4 full A-Levels or 3 full A-Levels and 2 AS'?
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    (Original post by SebastianTAS)
    Hi there,

    I am have just finished my AS-Levels and waiting for my results. I am studying Maths, Physics, Chemistry and Biology. I want to study Physics at university and so I have a choice to make. First, lets assume that I want to apply to uni's like Cambridge and Imperial. My school said they would allow me to do Further Maths next year as an AS but I would need to drop a subject, which I have chosen to be Biology. Should I drop Biology or should I keep it and not do Further Maths?
    I know Further Maths is not essential for doing Physics at uni, but is it better to get 4 full A-Levels or 3 full A-Levels and 2 AS'?
    This is a tricky question. If you really are targeting Cambridge or Imperial, it is definitely worth seriously considering Further Maths, since I imagine most people applying would have a full A Level in it. Whilst Further Maths isn't compulsory for physics, the majority of students will have it and it certainly would look odd that someone applying for physics - which is more or less applied mathematics - has not taken Further Maths when it was offered. On the other hand, 4 A2s is more challenging and at face value, more impressive than 3A2s and 2ASs.

    If you are targeting Cambridge or Imperial, you're clearly a very academically able student. Is it perhaps a possibility to self-teach AS Further Mathematics during Year 12, resulting in 4A2s and 1 AS? It won't be easy, but it does seem like the best solution in my view. Otherwise, perhaps email the respective admissions departments and ask what they recommend.
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    'Natural Sciences candidates intending to study Physics ideally require Maths, Physics and Further Maths, but may if necessary take Maths, Physics and another subject from List A1 or A2 as well as AS Further Maths.'


    Basically, it's up to you, I've heard that the first term of university is for making sure the non-FM people are at the same level, so you might be at an advantage doing further maths rather than biology, but it depends on what you enjoy

    https://www.trin.cam.ac.uk/index.php?pageid=604

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    Well, biology is all about remembering information/ processes. If your memory is bad you shouldn't do it if you want a good grade. Maths is about calculations and understanding the concepts/ ideas/ equations and understanding how to answer them using your knowledge. Further maths is 3 extra modules on top of maths- usually one of them being fp1.
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    I'm a student who's basically in the same exact situation as you. I have decided to drop biology and pick up an AS in further here's why

    Physics is a very mathsy subject and Cambridge oxford and imperial all expect you to understand this. I'm planning to apply for the oxford course and I've decided to self teach myself M2 M3 and FP1. Top end universities like oxford expect me to have at least three mechanics maths modules under my bel to do the course. It's not a necessity but it is recommended in terms of the course. I'm a bit of a nerd and I love maths and physics so picking up and self teaching some maths modules doesn't bother me and I'm looking forward to it. All I can say is if you're an academic individual then I'd go for the AS further maths. In a sense doing the the AS is sort of like earning some browny points. But it's your decision.

    Also those top end unis will be looking at your most relevant subjects first when it comes to applying. So in reality biology isn't that much of a requirement

    If you enjoy biology a lot then keep it but chemistry physics and maths will certainly be enough.

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    if you're school does f maths then do it. ther's basically no pointi n applying to Cambridge or Imperial without f maths if you wanna do physics. i say do physics maths further maths and chem all up to a2
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    If you want to study physics, then I would recommend also taking further maths to A2.

    Physics at university is definitely not the same as physics at A-level where you can get by with a grade A further maths GCSE.

    Although the first year will level the disparity between students from different academic backgrounds, A2 further maths will make it easier for you to concentrate on other parts of the course and not have to expend a huge effort trying to learn and practice new maths tools and concepts. i.e. your confidence with maths in the first year will only improve if you already have further maths under your belt.

    1st year maths on a physics course will introduce quite a few topics beyond further A2 and significantly beyond further A2 in the 2nd year. Getting a head start is not a bad thing.
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    Thanks, I wish I could go back and do a full A-Level in Further Maths, but it's a bit late now. I personally want to do my current 4 A-Levels and an extra AS Further. The AS Further modules I will do are FP1, M2 and M3, I have done M1 and currently doing S1 for A2 because it gives me a good knowledge of maths to do other subjects instead of just knowing Mechanics. I'll talk to my teachers and ask them whether I could do 4 + 1/2.

    The lecturers at Imperial were telling me that Further Maths is not necessary but the more Maths you know, the better it will be.
 
 
 
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