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Another person asking if CompSci is right for them Watch

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    I'm going to start by saying that I know very little about programming, and CompSci, but I like what I've heard about it! That may sound terrible, but I have reasons to suspect that I will enjoy the course (aiming for Cambridge, CompSci with Maths).

    My academic interests would be maths, sciences ( to a lesser degree, not a fan of practical work), and languages. I'm also a musician. I've got 9 A*s, an A and a B for my GCSEs. I'm currently doing Maths, Further Maths, the three sciences, and Chinese, but I'm dropping at least two at the end of year.

    Is computer science a good fit for me, and as an aside, could I get into Cambridge?
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    (Original post by wangmeister)
    I'm going to start by saying that I know very little about programming, and CompSci, but I like what I've heard about it! That may sound terrible, but I have reasons to suspect that I will enjoy the course (aiming for Cambridge, CompSci with Maths).

    My academic interests would be maths, sciences ( to a lesser degree, not a fan of practical work), and languages. I'm also a musician. I've got 9 A*s, an A and a B for my GCSEs. I'm currently doing Maths, Further Maths, the three sciences, and Chinese, but I'm dropping at least two at the end of year.

    Is computer science a good fit for me, and as an aside, could I get into Cambridge?
    What grades are Cambridge asking for?

    Most students start Computer Science courses with little or no experience in programming beforehand so you won't be alone. Those who know a lot are dedicated individuals who have been doing it for several years. It's not too hard to pick up and you'll regularly be practicing and you can find tons of tutorials online alongside your tutor if you want help. Programming is very hands on and practical though, but there are other aspects of Computer Science that are less practical and involve more theory. If you say you feel like you'll enjoy it, then go for it. Maths and FM would be the best choices to keep.
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    (Original post by wangmeister)
    I'm going to start by saying that I know very little about programming, and CompSci, but I like what I've heard about it! That may sound terrible, but I have reasons to suspect that I will enjoy the course (aiming for Cambridge, CompSci with Maths).

    My academic interests would be maths, sciences ( to a lesser degree, not a fan of practical work), and languages. I'm also a musician. I've got 9 A*s, an A and a B for my GCSEs. I'm currently doing Maths, Further Maths, the three sciences, and Chinese, but I'm dropping at least two at the end of year.

    Is computer science a good fit for me, and as an aside, could I get into Cambridge?
    I believe that Cambridge have a reading list on their website - get a couple of books that sound interesting and think about whether it's the right subject for you - it's not a question any of us can really answer for you. Regarding A Levels, you will obviously want to keep Maths and Further Maths next year - those are the main two that matter.

    You don't need to know how to program, they will teach you from scratch anyway and I imagine that the practicalities of coding will be fairly trivial in comparison to the theory you will learn. You probably know this already but a Computer Science degree is not a degree in programming. Having said that, learning a programming language shouldn't be too difficult and you might want to consider doing it if you have some time over the summer.

    As for whether you can get in - impossible to tell. It completely depends on how you do in your admissions tests and at interview (and at AS, if AS grades are even still being counted - not sure what the current state of the secondary education system is).
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    (Original post by wangmeister)
    I'm going to start by saying that I know very little about programming, and CompSci, but I like what I've heard about it! That may sound terrible, but I have reasons to suspect that I will enjoy the course (aiming for Cambridge, CompSci with Maths).

    My academic interests would be maths, sciences ( to a lesser degree, not a fan of practical work), and languages. I'm also a musician. I've got 9 A*s, an A and a B for my GCSEs. I'm currently doing Maths, Further Maths, the three sciences, and Chinese, but I'm dropping at least two at the end of year.

    Is computer science a good fit for me, and as an aside, could I get into Cambridge?
    Hi wangmeiser,

    I would highly recommend watching the following educational video:
    Name:  Introduction to Computer Programming (String Variables).jpg
Views: 11
Size:  90.0 KB

    https://youtu.be/m1wlc1Ss_wQ


    If you find it easy to understand the material in this video, a future in computer programming might be the right path for you.

    Best Regards,

    - Stephen Roddy

    Name:  Introduction to Computer Programming (String Variables).jpg
Views: 11
Size:  90.0 KB
    YouTube video at: https://youtu.be/m1wlc1Ss_wQ
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    (Original post by Plagioclase)
    You don't need to know how to program, they will teach you from scratch anyway and I imagine that the practicalities of coding will be fairly trivial in comparison to the theory you will learn. You probably know this already but a Computer Science degree is not a degree in programming. Having said that, learning a programming language shouldn't be too difficult and you might want to consider doing it if you have some time over the summer.
    While the single steps might seem/be trivial - the tremendous piling up of steps for bringing an idea to an ok executable is an exercise in chaos and complexity. When programming you are not only writing some characters and hoping for the best - well some students without previous experience seem to just permute their program and randomly add some internet-looked up stuff.
    You probably will be able to pass most stuff without previous experience but it will be more fun and a lot easier if you pick up a bit of programming before. My tip there is to not do some programming tutorial which will likely bore you to death but instead pick a random game idea and try to build that game and looking up stuff on the run.
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    (Original post by ksjogo)
    My tip there is to not do some programming tutorial which will likely bore you to death but instead pick a random game idea and try to build that game and looking up stuff on the run.
    I'd actually recommend looking into scientific programming instead because that's how I finally got into it. I spent most of my time in secondary school trying - and failing - to learn to program because the trend was games programming, but it's very difficult to actually program a game from scratch that's remotely decent. The way I actually learned to program was when I learned some basic linear algebra and simple routines like forwards/backwards Euler and was then able to apply that to mathematical problems like finding numerical solutions to differential equations. Which is a lot more straightforward than programming a game and is still very rewarding.
 
 
 
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