A-level choices for Medicine or BioNatsci Watch

Rimas5
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Hi

I would really appreciate a little help in deciding my 4th A-level which I will drop next year (after doing an AS exam). I am going to school in 5 days so I'm getting a little stressed!

My A-levels are Biology, Chemistry, Accelerated Maths and I am deciding between English lit. or Physics. I will probably do either Medicine or Biological Natural Sciences at university and I want to apply for Cambridge for BioNatsci if I decide against Medicine. I know that English lit. will be fine for medicine but I'm a bit concerned that doing English rather than another science for A-level will compromise my application for BioNatsci especially as Cambridge don't really care about contrast subjects - I don't want them to think I'm not committed to science by doing English.

Does anyone know people who have done contrast subjects for their 4th subject and got in for BioNatsci or does everyone do 3 Sciences and Maths? I do prefer English but I also like Physics so it wouldn't really big a big deal.

Thanks for any help!
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black1blade
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Accelerated maths as in maths in 1 year?
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Rimas5
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Accelerated Maths is basically single Maths and AS level further maths but spread equally across two years. So at the end I'll have an A-level in maths and an AS level in further maths. I can't drop it after one year because it's a two year course
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thotproduct
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Unfortunately, this can vary a wee bit.

Medicine is a field that you should only consider if your heart is set on it, as there's so much extra stuff to be done, i.e UKCAT, 4 applications, etc. So I'd advise you find a preference really quickly.

For Medicine: Biology, Chemistry, Maths are the typical offer,

For Med Schools, it is rare to see a candidate taking Further Maths at all, and the ones that do have done an Accelerated Maths course, as mentioned above, wherein you study for a full A Level in Maths in 1 year and take Further Maths in Y13. I'd advise against Further Maths, as for one, some Unis consider Maths and Further Maths one subject, and additionally, a vast vast majority of successful applicants came in with Maths, Bio and Chem. You don't wanna add to your already heavy workload.

For Bio NatSci, especially at Cambridge, FM would be a decent shout. I was at their Summer School a few weeks ago and I was told that some applicants will have FM to at least an AS standard, as NatSci is such a diverse course, it is wise to choose it to have the edge, however NatSci offers can very depending on specialty.

It says here:
"Most students have at least 3 science/mathematics A Levels and having just two will restrict your subject choice in first year. In these circumstances you'll normally be expected to achieve A* in both the science/mathematics subjects and encouraged to take an additional science/mathematics AS Level".

NatSci offer: Because it's diverse, there are a variety of different combos, according to the most recent Prospectus, the most useful combos are:

A Level Chemistry, A Level Mathematics, and an AS level(minimum) in either Biology or Physics
A Level Physics, A Level Mathematics and an AS Level (minimum) in Further Mathematics
A Level Biology, A Level Chemistry and an AS Level (minimum) in either Mathematics and Physics

Because the NatSci course on offer at Cambridge is so multi-faceted, there is so much room to personalise and specialise in your degree, so depending on your intended specialty, you will have to have an AS Level at least in that science, in this instance, I'd recommend the first and third options particularly.

In summary, for the course you're wanting now, you should be good for both, but make sure you decide on a preference sooner or later to save some extra unnecessary workload.
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Rimas6
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Thanks a lot for the advice about Medicine and FM - that's why I chose to do accelerated maths rather than just single maths. But what do you think about doing physics or English lit. for AS?
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