Computer Science and IT Watch

The Grand Design
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At A-level what is the difference between Computer Science and IT? I'm unsure whether to take one as a fourth option, I currently want to take Physics, Maths and Further Maths. Would either of these mix well with my 3 choices and how well respected are they at top universities? Or would it be better to take a subject like Economics?
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OrionMusicNet
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(Original post by The Grand Design)
At A-level what is the difference between Computer Science and IT? I'm unsure whether to take one as a fourth option, I currently want to take Physics, Maths and Further Maths. Would either of these mix well with my 3 choices and how well respected are they at top universities? Or would it be better to take a subject like Economics?
Computing over IT for sure, but Economics isn't a bad option either. I personally would go with computing simply because of how straight forward (but no easy) the tests are. If you revise early and memorise all the necessary info, you will guarantee yourself an A / A*. Other subjects like Economics aren't so straightforward as their are essays, but Economics is still good too.

PS: Some universities don't respect IT very much, so you don't wanna muck up your chances because of it.
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z33
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Computer Science is harder
there's like degree level **** in there man
I did OCR Computing but I am doing the old spec
someone doing the new spec might be able to advise you better
you best be good at programming (and algorithms)
because the coursework in year 13 will ruin your life
and also in AS the programming paper is kinda hard
but the theory is fine

IT - can't speak for it but... my friend said it's easy
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The Grand Design
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(Original post by OrionMusicNet)
Computing over IT for sure, but Economics isn't a bad option either. I personally would go with computing simply because of how straight forward (but no easy) the tests are. If you revise early and memorise all the necessary info, you will guarantee yourself an A / A*. Other subjects like Economics aren't so straightforward as their are essays, but Economics is still good too.

PS: Some universities don't respect IT very much, so you don't wanna muck up your chances because of it.
Great, thank you! Unfortunately the college I want to go to doesn't offer Computer Science and only IT so I might just go for Economics instead.
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The Grand Design
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(Original post by z33)
Computer Science is harder
there's like degree level **** in there man
I did OCR Computing but I am doing the old spec
someone doing the new spec might be able to advise you better
you best be good at programming (and algorithms)
because the coursework in year 13 will ruin your life
and also in AS the programming paper is kinda hard
but the theory is fine

IT - can't speak for it but... my friend said it's easy
Oh right haha. Maybe it wouldn't be a good idea to take it since I didn't do anything similar at GCSE Might just stick to Economics since the college I want to go to only offers IT
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CloakedSpartan
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Yeah, don't do IT. Computing/Computer Science and IT are only related in that they both involve a computer. Computing/Computer Science is the good, respected subject with lots of computing theory regarding components, algorithms, protocols etc, and practical programming, and ICT is so unrespected that the government is phasing it out.
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celloel
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Whilst Computing is harder than IT, IT is still a decent A Level, don't let people tell you otherwise. They are very different.

IT can gain you access to careers in IT Consulting, Investment Banking (helps with back office work), Business Analyst/Analysing, etc. IT may not be as respected by Oxbridge, but it is by other top Universities (e.g. UCL, Reading, Southampton). You can make a very decent living off of degrees related to IT.

Plus, just because you did IT at A Level doesn't mean you can't do Computing at University (which is exactly what my sister did).
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The Grand Design
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(Original post by serah.exe)
I think they are getting rid of ICT in 2 years time :erm:
Really? I had no idea haha
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The Grand Design
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(Original post by CloakedSpartan)
Yeah, don't do IT. Computing/Computer Science and IT are only related in that they both involve a computer. Computing/Computer Science is the good, respected subject with lots of computing theory regarding components, algorithms, protocols etc, and practical programming, and ICT is so unrespected that the government is phasing it out.
Awesome, thank you, it does sound interesting and I would love to do it but they don't offer it at the college I want to go to. I think I'll look more into it to see if I really want to do it and decide from there. At least it crosses off IT as a possible for my fourth option.
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The Grand Design
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(Original post by celloel)
Whilst Computing is harder than IT, IT is still a decent A Level, don't let people tell you otherwise. They are very different.

IT can gain you access to careers in IT Consulting, Investment Banking (helps with back office work), Business Analyst/Analysing, etc. IT may not be as respected by Oxbridge, but it is by other top Universities (e.g. UCL, Reading, Southampton). You can make a very decent living off of degrees related to IT.

Plus, just because you did IT at A Level doesn't mean you can't do Computing at University (which is exactly what my sister did).
Okay, thank you. I don't plan on going into an IT related career or do a degree in it, I just sort of wanted something like it as a fourth A-level to open up more career paths and just something I would enjoy.
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celloel
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(Original post by The Grand Design)
Okay, thank you. I don't plan on going into an IT related career or do a degree in it, I just sort of wanted something like it as a fourth A-level to open up more career paths and just something I would enjoy.
Cambridge and Oxford accept it as a fourth A Level. It's something you can get a good grade in and is easy enough, whilst being very enjoyable. Honestly, it's also very vocational, so will prove to be invaluable in any career you go in to. (The amount of databasing, software use, etc in every business is extraordinary).

IT is fundamental in the entirety of our society. In security, defence/military, the NHS, education, business and many other sectors. People who think it's useless are fools, in all honesty.
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The Grand Design
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(Original post by celloel)
Cambridge and Oxford accept it as a fourth A Level. It's something you can get a good grade in and is easy enough, whilst being very enjoyable. Honestly, it's also very vocational, so will prove to be invaluable in any career you go in to. (The amount of databasing, software use, etc in every business is extraordinary).

IT is fundamental in the entirety of our society. In security, defence/military, the NHS, education, business and many other sectors. People who think it's useless are fools, in all honesty.
I'll consider it but I wanted more of a challenging A-level so I was thinking of Computer Science since it seems a bit more interesting and challenging. I think I definitely need to look more into both though to make a decision.
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username2130115
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ICT is using the lift; computer science is engineering the lift

ICT topics:
Mail merge
How to make fancy powerpoints
Spreadsheets
Business management
Futurology
Networking
Software engineering
Databases
HCI

CS topics:
Discrete mathematics
Linear algebra
Programming
Algorithm
Computational complexity
Signal processing
Databases
HCI
Networking
Software engineering
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celloel
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(Original post by Raees_Sharif)
ICT is using the lift; computer science is engineering the lift
And knowing how to use the lift is fundamental.

Everyone knows IT isn't "learn how to use word/powerpoint/microsoft", right? Whilst that may be the comparison between computing and IT, IT is not as basic as 'using the lift'.

It's about management, analysing, consulting, IT uses within health, defence, education, vital business usage, etc. Without IT, our society truly would not be as it is today. For example, an entire airport shut down due recently to IT malfunctions (and in IT we learnt how this problem would be solved and prevented).
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username2130115
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(Original post by celloel)
And knowing how to use the lift is fundamental.

Everyone knows IT isn't "learn how to use word/powerpoint/microsoft", right? Whilst that may be the comparison between computing and IT, IT is not as basic as 'using the lift'.

It's about management, analysing, consulting, IT uses within health, defence, education, vital business usage, etc. Without IT, our society truly would not be as it is today. For example, an entire airport shut down due recently to IT malfunctions (and in IT we learnt how this problem would be solved and prevented).
Re read my post, I am not disputing the importance of how to use a lift. I'm just saying they are different fields of study.
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celloel
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Someone just posted topics within IT to compare with Computing. Very unfairly, in fact, as the IT topics posted were some of the most basic functions within some specifications. Yes, it is true that computing is considered more difficult as it is more mathematical.

That does not mean that IT is not relevant, important or fundamental to our society.

Basically, if you don't study a subject or you (as these people clearly) don't know what it leads to/what part it plays in our societies, then you need to stfu about it
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celloel
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(Original post by Raees_Sharif)
Re read my post, I am not disputing the importance of how to use a lift. I'm just saying they are different fields of study.
My mistake, fair point. They are very different, you're right - and I would, as someone that studies IT, say computing is harder (due to it's mathematical element).
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serah.exe
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Damn, I wish my school offered Computing/Computer Science for A level. Sadly I was the only one interested in doing that (can't have a class of 1 lmao) and had to make do with ICT.
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username2130115
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(Original post by celloel)
My mistake, fair point. They are very different, you're right - and I would, as someone that studies IT, say computing is harder (due to it's mathematical element).
I agree, some of the CS topics are arguably harder than ICT topics. Not so much harder if you enjoy mathematics though. However, ICT and CS both complement each other.

(Original post by serah.exe)
Damn, I wish my school offered Computing/Computer Science for A level. Sadly I was the only one interested in doing that (can't have a class of 1 lmao) and had to make do with ICT.
I feel you, I wish I could've done AL Computer Science. It's not the end of the world though, there's loads of fabulous resources on the internet that you can use to self-teach programming and CS theory.
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The Grand Design
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(Original post by Raees_Sharif)
ICT is using the lift; computer science is engineering the lift

ICT topics:
Mail merge
How to make fancy powerpoints
Spreadsheets
Business management
Futurology
Networking
Software engineering
Databases
HCI

CS topics:
Discrete mathematics
Linear algebra
Programming
Algorithm
Computational complexity
Signal processing
Databases
HCI
Networking
Software engineering
Thank you! This really helped, Computer Science definitely seems more for me.
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