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    I've just finished taking my IGCSE/GCSE exams, and aside from biology, chemistry and english literature - I have absolutely no clue what subjects to take if I am to pursue veterinary medicine at university.
    Here are the subjects I'm choosing:
    Biology
    Chemistry
    English
    Psychology (could change to History)

    Obviously I know I should actually be considering maths, but nope. mega nope. I can't even begin to explain how much I suffered at maths GCSE level. But since I'll already be at a disadvantage since I'm not taking maths, I'd really like to not lower my chances down even further.
    Which begs the question; do i choose History or Psychology A-level? Which one will be more of a help? I took History at GCSE level and got pretty good grades (consistent A*) and I feel like it would be much easier to take history than risk my chances at Psychology - a subject I know nothing about. Also, i've been hearing from multiple sources that Psychology is really hard and time-consuming; something i would rather avoid considering I'll be doing lots of work experience.

    So yeah, what subject should I choose, between History and psychology, if I want to pursue veterinary medicine? Sorry for the long read.
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    I know people who have done both, and both can be pretty tough, so if I were you, I'd choose whichever I felt I'd succeed in more.
    I'm applying for Veterinary Science for 2017 entry, and some of the people I met on open days and summer courses last year (I intended to apply for 2016 entry, but I messed up my AS exams and ended up being predicted Es and Ds in biology and chemistry) did look down their nose at me, as I didn't take maths or physics (or another similar subject) at A level, I chose drama instead and enjoyed every minute of it. For most universities, having a third A level that isn't related to biology or chemistry is fine, but double check entry requirements before applying
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    (Original post by Siannyallen)
    I know people who have done both, and both can be pretty tough, so if I were you, I'd choose whichever I felt I'd succeed in more.
    I'm applying for Veterinary Science for 2017 entry, and some of the people I met on open days and summer courses last year (I intended to apply for 2016 entry, but I messed up my AS exams and ended up being predicted Es and Ds in biology and chemistry) did look down their nose at me, as I didn't take maths or physics (or another similar subject) at A level, I chose drama instead and enjoyed every minute of it. For most universities, having a third A level that isn't related to biology or chemistry is fine, but double check entry requirements before applying
    Thank you for the reply! I think I would be more successful in History, but I just wanted to know which one would give me a higher chance at university so I don't beat myself over my choices later on. Which university are you applying for? I don't really know which university to choose so I don't actually know which website's entry requirements to look at, haha. Also, do you know anyone who wants to do a vet course and took either History or Psychology? If so, did they make it?
    Best wishes to you next year! Hopefully your efforts pay off and you can enter.
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    (Original post by confusedplant)
    Thank you for the reply! I think I would be more successful in History, but I just wanted to know which one would give me a higher chance at university so I don't beat myself over my choices later on. Which university are you applying for? I don't really know which university to choose so I don't actually know which website's entry requirements to look at, haha. Also, do you know anyone who wants to do a vet course and took either History or Psychology? If so, did they make it?
    Best wishes to you next year! Hopefully your efforts pay off and you can enter.
    Nottingham and RVC are two I definitely want to apply for, and then two of Surrey, Liverpool or Bristol. My school isn't very good at A levels so I only know one person who applied to vet med with the rest of our year, who may have taken psychology at AS but I'm not sure, and I don't think she got any offers. One student I met at the Bristol open day said that he had a friend who took art A level and got in. As for which one would give you a higher chance at university, I would go with the one that interests you most. from what I could tell at VetSim and open days, lecturers and current students both told me that they found me taking drama A2 and my involvement with drama outside of school interesting and worth a mention as it makes me stand out compared to many other applicants. It may also be worth mentioning in your personal statement any "transferrable skills" you have learnt from your more unusual subject. For example, I don't know about all the different courses for history at A level, but my friends that took history had to do an independent study in year 13, so if you have to do the same, you could talk about how history has developed any researching skills.
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    (Original post by Siannyallen)
    Nottingham and RVC are two I definitely want to apply for, and then two of Surrey, Liverpool or Bristol. My school isn't very good at A levels so I only know one person who applied to vet med with the rest of our year, who may have taken psychology at AS but I'm not sure, and I don't think she got any offers. One student I met at the Bristol open day said that he had a friend who took art A level and got in. As for which one would give you a higher chance at university, I would go with the one that interests you most. from what I could tell at VetSim and open days, lecturers and current students both told me that they found me taking drama A2 and my involvement with drama outside of school interesting and worth a mention as it makes me stand out compared to many other applicants. It may also be worth mentioning in your personal statement any "transferrable skills" you have learnt from your more unusual subject. For example, I don't know about all the different courses for history at A level, but my friends that took history had to do an independent study in year 13, so if you have to do the same, you could talk about how history has developed any researching skills.
    Huh. So it would actually be better to take History? I thought that since Psychology was more of a 'science-based' subject, it would be more favourably looked upon in the context of me going for vetmed. But out of context, History looks much better, it seems, as it is a facilitating subject. Honestly, I know I would definitely be better at it. The problem is just that I'm basing my decision on how much it affects my chances at university. If Psychology is a better shot for vetmed, then I'll choose it. If not, then I'd probably go for History.

    Do you think Psychology or History would be a more preferred subject together with the subjects I have already chosen (English lit, Biology, Chemistry)? At this point, I'm really not sure what to do so any opinion would really help.
    Thanks in advance
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    (Original post by confusedplant)
    I've just finished taking my IGCSE/GCSE exams, and aside from biology, chemistry and english literature - I have absolutely no clue what subjects to take if I am to pursue veterinary medicine at university.
    Here are the subjects I'm choosing:
    Biology
    Chemistry
    English
    Psychology (could change to History)

    Obviously I know I should actually be considering maths, but nope. mega nope. I can't even begin to explain how much I suffered at maths GCSE level. But since I'll already be at a disadvantage since I'm not taking maths, I'd really like to not lower my chances down even further.
    Which begs the question; do i choose History or Psychology A-level? Which one will be more of a help? I took History at GCSE level and got pretty good grades (consistent A*) and I feel like it would be much easier to take history than risk my chances at Psychology - a subject I know nothing about. Also, i've been hearing from multiple sources that Psychology is really hard and time-consuming; something i would rather avoid considering I'll be doing lots of work experience.

    So yeah, what subject should I choose, between History and psychology, if I want to pursue veterinary medicine? Sorry for the long read.
    I did biology, chemistry, geog and psychology at A level. Psychology is a very difficult subject, any idea which exam board you'll be using? The content is quite straight forward, especially if you're doing something like biology which will aid your understanding of the biological approach in psychology. However, it was my most content heavy subject; I honestly put so much work into learning all the studies / theories and only ended up with a B at AS. The problem with psychology at A level is that it's like a never ending pit- teachers just bombard you with studies upon studies and you need to learn them all (despite only needing a tiny amount in the exam.)

    I have friends who do history and find it difficult, but claim it's easier than psychology but the course work can literally save your grade if you mess up in the exam. With psychology that's not the case the new specification also seems to be riddled with statistics so you better like maths if you take psychology


    Ps - apologies for appalling sentence structure, I'm texting


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    (Original post by confusedplant)
    Huh. So it would actually be better to take History? I thought that since Psychology was more of a 'science-based' subject, it would be more favourably looked upon in the context of me going for vetmed. But out of context, History looks much better, it seems, as it is a facilitating subject. Honestly, I know I would definitely be better at it. The problem is just that I'm basing my decision on how much it affects my chances at university. If Psychology is a better shot for vetmed, then I'll choose it. If not, then I'd probably go for History.

    Do you think Psychology or History would be a more preferred subject together with the subjects I have already chosen (English lit, Biology, Chemistry)? At this point, I'm really not sure what to do so any opinion would really help.
    Thanks in advance
    Everyone I have spoken to that is the other side of the application process, as opposed to a veterinary applicant, seems to agree that, for most universities, any other A level (excluding critical thinking and general studies) is acceptable. In my opinion, I think History may be better for you if you're confident that you can do well in it. Depending on the exam board, psychology and biology do occasionally cross over, but from hearing what students that take both say compared to those who only take one of the above, biology may be beneficial for psychology, but psychology is not necessarily beneficial for biology, if you get what I mean.
    I hope this helps, and hasn't gone on too much of a tangent
    whatever you choose, as long as you can do well in the subject, neither should put you at a disadvantage for applying to most vetmed courses
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    If the A level requirement is 'AAA including Biology and Chemistry' it doesn't matter what subject you choose as your 3rd subject.

    If the 3rd subject isnt stated or nothing is given as 'desirable' you can do anything. So choose the subject where you feel most confident of an A grade and forget 'relevant;, 'useful' etc - just go for a subject that you will enjoy enough to get an A grade. It can be Dance Studies or Art History - just get an A grade!
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    (Original post by returnmigrant)
    If the A level requirement is 'AAA including Biology and Chemistry' it doesn't matter what subject you choose as your 3rd subject.

    If the 3rd subject isnt stated or nothing is given as 'desirable' you can do anything. So choose the subject where you feel most confident of an A grade and forget 'relevant;, 'useful' etc - just go for a subject that you will enjoy enough to get an A grade. It can be Dance Studies or Art History - just get an A grade!
    pretty much what returnmigrant just said, this is from the university of Nottingham's vet school FAQ page
    "We do not prefer any subject over another, albeit we do not accept General Studies or Critical Thinking. We have found that those who have done English, PE, Psychology etc as a third subject have exactly the same year average at the end of year 1 as those who have done Maths or Physics. We look for more than just academics in our students, so we suggest you take a subject that you really enjoy."
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    (Original post by Sacred Ground)
    I did biology, chemistry, geog and psychology at A level. Psychology is a very difficult subject, any idea which exam board you'll be using? The content is quite straight forward, especially if you're doing something like biology which will aid your understanding of the biological approach in psychology. However, it was my most content heavy subject; I honestly put so much work into learning all the studies / theories and only ended up with a B at AS. The problem with psychology at A level is that it's like a never ending pit- teachers just bombard you with studies upon studies and you need to learn them all (despite only needing a tiny amount in the exam.)

    I have friends who do history and find it difficult, but claim it's easier than psychology but the course work can literally save your grade if you mess up in the exam. With psychology that's not the case the new specification also seems to be riddled with statistics so you better like maths if you take psychology


    Ps - apologies for appalling sentence structure, I'm texting


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    Oh man. Really maths? From this year the exam on psychology was using the edexcel exam board.
    Honestly Psychology is beginning to look like a bad idea. Seeing as I'm already going to be learning so much content in Biology and Chemistry it would save my backside if I took subjects that weren't too content heavy; the main reason why I didnt choose History - I thought it was going to be too content heavy but seeing how so many sources (from home and here) are stressing the difficulty of Psychology, I guess I should think twice before taking it.

    Dont worry about the phrasing, I'm reading it just fine. Thank you for taking the time to reply though!
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    (Original post by returnmigrant)
    If the A level requirement is 'AAA including Biology and Chemistry' it doesn't matter what subject you choose as your 3rd subject.

    If the 3rd subject isnt stated or nothing is given as 'desirable' you can do anything. So choose the subject where you feel most confident of an A grade and forget 'relevant;, 'useful' etc - just go for a subject that you will enjoy enough to get an A grade. It can be Dance Studies or Art History - just get an A grade!
    So it would actually be better to choose History and get a good grade for sure rather than risk getting a bad grade in Psychology? Thank you for the information, I thought most universities just wanted all science subjects in A-level for vetmed.
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    (Original post by Siannyallen)
    pretty much what returnmigrant just said, this is from the university of Nottingham's vet school FAQ page
    "We do not prefer any subject over another, albeit we do not accept General Studies or Critical Thinking. We have found that those who have done English, PE, Psychology etc as a third subject have exactly the same year average at the end of year 1 as those who have done Maths or Physics. We look for more than just academics in our students, so we suggest you take a subject that you really enjoy."
    Thats actually really reassuring to hear that Maths and Physics isnt everything because I'll be screwed otherwise.
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    (Original post by Siannyallen)
    Everyone I have spoken to that is the other side of the application process, as opposed to a veterinary applicant, seems to agree that, for most universities, any other A level (excluding critical thinking and general studies) is acceptable. In my opinion, I think History may be better for you if you're confident that you can do well in it. Depending on the exam board, psychology and biology do occasionally cross over, but from hearing what students that take both say compared to those who only take one of the above, biology may be beneficial for psychology, but psychology is not necessarily beneficial for biology, if you get what I mean.
    I hope this helps, and hasn't gone on too much of a tangent
    whatever you choose, as long as you can do well in the subject, neither should put you at a disadvantage for applying to most vetmed courses
    Yep, I get it. I didn't think Psychology would be too much of a required subject, but was just worried it would be seen as an advantage and that I would miss out on that.
    It definitely helps! Thank you so much for your information and opinions, it helps to be able to discuss this with someone other than teachers (the career guidance teacher in my school is kind of hard to talk to).
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    (Original post by confusedplant)
    I've just finished taking my IGCSE/GCSE exams, and aside from biology, chemistry and english literature - I have absolutely no clue what subjects to take if I am to pursue veterinary medicine at university. Here are the subjects I'm choosing:BiologyChemistryEnglish Psychology (could change to History)Obviously I know I should actually be considering maths, but nope. mega nope. I can't even begin to explain how much I suffered at maths GCSE level. But since I'll already be at a disadvantage since I'm not taking maths, I'd really like to not lower my chances down even further.Which begs the question; do i choose History or Psychology A-level? Which one will be more of a help? I took History at GCSE level and got pretty good grades (consistent A*) and I feel like it would be much easier to take history than risk my chances at Psychology - a subject I know nothing about. Also, i've been hearing from multiple sources that Psychology is really hard and time-consuming; something i would rather avoid considering I'll be doing lots of work experience.So yeah, what subject should I choose, between History and psychology, if I want to pursue veterinary medicine? Sorry for the long read.
    Hello. I'm planning to apply to veterinary medicine next year and although I can't give you specifics about A level requirements(I'm Scottish), I suggest that you take a look at the entry requirements on the university websites. There are only 8 in the UK that do veterinary (Glasgow, Edinburgh, Bristol, Surrey, Liverpool, Nottingham, RVC and Cambridge), so it shouldn't take too long. There will also be information about work experience requirements on the websites too, so be sure to look at that. If you're still unsure, contact admissions via email- they're usually very helpful. There's no need to choose where you want to go yet, but perhaps start to think about going to some open days, as this will potentially affect your decisions. If you have any more questions, feel free to ask or altenatively there's a veterinary medicine forum on TSR too. Hope this helps.
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    (Original post by Labrador99)
    Hello. I'm planning to apply to veterinary medicine next year and although I can't give you specifics about A level requirements(I'm Scottish), I suggest that you take a look at the entry requirements on the university websites. There are only 8 in the UK that do veterinary (Glasgow, Edinburgh, Bristol, Surrey, Liverpool, Nottingham, RVC and Cambridge), so it shouldn't take too long. There will also be information about work experience requirements on the websites too, so be sure to look at that. If you're still unsure, contact admissions via email- they're usually very helpful. There's no need to choose where you want to go yet, but perhaps start to think about going to some open days, as this will potentially affect your decisions. If you have any more questions, feel free to ask or altenatively there's a veterinary medicine forum on TSR too. Hope this helps.
    Thank you for the reply! I've been to the websites and have checked out their entry requirements, and I'm only posting this thread here because the universities dont really talk about this kind of thing. Sure, I can see all the requirements and mostly they need Biology and Chemistry, but the websites dont really provide detail on preferred subjects (some do, some dont, some are vague) nor do they provide detail on which subject is better than another.
    So here I am

    The problem with open days is that as I dont live in the USA or UK, attending would be quite impossible. The veterinary medicine forum definitely helps, that was a huge lifeline.
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    For Bristol, if you go to the very bottom of the webpage for ANY course, you will see a link to the Admissions Statement. This will give you info about how applications are assessed (the weightings for qualifications vs. PS etc, the policy on retakes for that course etc etc). There may also be a link to 'further info' - more detailed info about the course, the dept etc.
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    (Original post by returnmigrant)
    For Bristol, if you go to the very bottom of the webpage for ANY course, you will see a link to the Admissions Statement. This will give you info about how applications are assessed (the weightings for qualifications vs. PS etc, the policy on retakes for that course etc etc). There may also be a link to 'further info' - more detailed info about the course, the dept etc.
    Bristol? Oh wow, that would be great and all but I think Bristol is just reaching a bit too high for me. I dont know really, my grades are probably (?) good enough for most universities but it just seems like trying for Bristol is like wishing for a blue moon. The acceptance rate is pretty low, isnt it? Somewhere around 140 students?
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    (Original post by confusedplant)
    Which begs the question; do i choose History or Psychology A-level? Which one will be more of a help?
    Some universities value History highly because it teaches you to write essays, but in this case you have English Lit which will have the same effect. You should look at the unis you would like to apply to, because some of them don't accept "social sciences" as actual sciences, so you could have the same benefit from taking History.

    I'd say just go with whatever you would prefer - a lot of places don't even do four A Levels (my college doesn't - unless you want to go into Medicine). Most unis will require a standard offer of three A Levels, so if you think you could do better in History it would give you more of a boost than a lower grade in Psychology.

    If you're not passionate about the subject then don't take it. Go with what you love - you should be fine anyway as you have two "hard sciences".
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    (Original post by Amefish)
    You should look at the unis you would like to apply to, because some of them don't accept "social sciences" as actual sciences, so you could have the same benefit from taking History.

    If you're not passionate about the subject then don't take it. Go with what you love - you should be fine anyway as you have two "hard sciences".
    Thank you for the reply! The problem with looking at universities is that I really dont know which universities are good or which ones I want to apply to in the future, so as of right now I'm just trying to select subjects that will give me more of a range on universities I want to attend in the future. I'm just trying to prevent myself from having no options, really.
    About the social sciences part, would Psychology be considered as a social science subject? Does this mean that it wouldn't actually be of any use as I already have Biology and Chemistry?
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    From all your (EXTREMELY HELPFUL - THANK YOU SO MUCH) replies and various sources, I think I'd be choosing History. I know I can do well in History, and I feel like this will allow me to get a good grade in History without losing too much focus on my science subjects. I thought Psychology was a good idea at first simply because I had conditioned myself to think that as it was a science based subject, it would be more important. But apparently humanities look way more strong as a subject - told by friends and teachers.

    Just to make sure, I'll be emailing a number of universities to inquire about their admission process soon. Thank you so much for all the replies and information, it honestly helped so so much.
 
 
 
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