Is only doing Maths, Further Maths and Physics at A2 level fine for a CS degree?

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spanieldaniel
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LouN1997
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From the natural sciences department at cambridge, I know they do not view further maths as a full a level, only a "top up" of maths a level. Other universities such as Oxford, Imperial etc accept further maths as a full a level and will most likely make a computer science offer to include maths and physics, if not further maths also. I applied for engineering this year so I am not completely in the know about computer science degrees/requirements however I don't think they differ much.
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Oxford Computer Science Dept
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Hi This is an Oxford answer, but we're not too different to other top Unis for CompSci so hopefully it will be useful to you.

The standard conditional offer for the straight Computer Science degree is A*AA with at least an A in Maths. The A* has to be in either Maths, Further Maths or Computing. So Maths is essential and we strongly recommend Further Maths as the best preparation for the course. We very much see them as two separate A Levels. We often see candidates who do Maths, FMaths and Physics to full A2 - that's fine by us. We only make offers based on three full A Levels, although we will notice if you did more. We wouldn't, for example, see AAAA at A Level as equivalent to A*AA. It's important to us that candidates are getting those top grades in the relevant subjects.

If you think that dropping Economics after AS would work better for you we certainly wouldn't have a problem with it.
Hope that helps!
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Bobjim12
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(Original post by Oxford Computer Science Dept)
Hi This is an Oxford answer, but we're not too different to other top Unis for CompSci so hopefully it will be useful to you.

The standard conditional offer for the straight Computer Science degree is A*AA with at least an A in Maths. The A* has to be in either Maths, Further Maths or Computing. So Maths is essential and we strongly recommend Further Maths as the best preparation for the course. We very much see them as two separate A Levels. We often see candidates who do Maths, FMaths and Physics to full A2 - that's fine by us. We only make offers based on three full A Levels, although we will notice if you did more. We wouldn't, for example, see AAAA at A Level as equivalent to A*AA. It's important to us that candidates are getting those top grades in the relevant subjects.

If you think that dropping Economics after AS would work better for you we certainly wouldn't have a problem with it.
Hope that helps!
Do you look at exact UMS grades on applications?
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Oxford Computer Science Dept
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(Original post by Bobjim12)
Do you look at exact UMS grades on applications?
We don't ask for them. But if you do include them we'll see them. We're looking for evidence of your ability, so they can be helpful. Especially, for example, if a candidate has generally done really well, but is borderline on a grade at AS due to messing up a single module. It helps us to see how a student is normally performing.
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WillWalker23
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For all top universities for computer science, further maths is highly desirable. Equally for engineering, it won't be seen as just an addition to maths. Eg you're unlikely to get into Cambridge, Imperial or Oxford without it (unless your school doesn't offer it) for both Engineering and Compsci. At Bristol, York and St Andrews, they even drop the entry requirements if you have further maths so take it. Maths is essential and for most one science subject is also necessary - for oxbridge - this has to be one of Chemistry, Biology or Physics, but at Imperial it can include languages economics computing and electronics.

If you can cope with it, take Economics as a fourth a level. If you're on par with another candidate at interview, you want something to sell yourself with. An extra a-level isn't vital but if two identical candidates are at an interview, one with 3 a-levels and one with 4 - the one with 4 is more likely to get chosen. If you do choose to drop it, just say how much you love maths and wanted to focus on maths and that should stand you in good stead.
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Oxford Computer Science Dept
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(Original post by WillWalker23)
An extra a-level isn't vital but if two identical candidates are at an interview, one with 3 a-levels and one with 4 - the one with 4 is more likely to get chosen.
Although I broadly agree with your other points, this wouldn't be accurate for a CompSci applicant at Oxford. Performance in the MAT test and at interview would much more important than if a candidate had an extra A Level in a less relevant subject.

(Original post by WillWalker23)
Maths is essential and for most one science subject is also necessary - for oxbridge - this has to be one of Chemistry, Biology or Physics, but at Imperial it can include languages economics computing and electronics.
The standard conditional offer for straight Computer Science at Oxford is A*AA with at least an A in Maths. The A* has to be in Maths, Further Maths or Computing. So yes, we do like to see students with science subjects, but it's not essential. Maths is essential, and Further Maths is strongly recommended.
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