Were you pressured into doing certain subjects for GCSE?

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KIMIZS
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Hi everyone! I'm writing an essay about teenagers feeling pressured to do STEM subjects at GCSE. I'm focusing on how Maths and Science are compulsory (whether it be single, double or triple) and how humanities, such as History or RS, aren't (according to gov. standards). However, I can't generalise a whole nation of teenagers, so I would greatly appreciate it if you could share your experience when you were choosing your GCSEs.
Here are some questions I'm looking to address:
Did you have to drop a favourite subject to make room for a compulsory one?
Did your school put pressure on you to do subjects such as maths or science, but not art or DT?
Do you feel as though it's unfair that you're not very scientific, and you've known this for a while, yet you have to deal with science GCSE?
In your school, do you see science-y pupils being able to take the subjects they enjoy with enough room in their timetable, while creative pupils have to drop some of their favourite subjects to make room for science?
Thanks!
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DrawTheLine
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I felt pressured to do a language. I was advised for my 3 options to do one art, one humanity and one language. I did psychology, history and geography as well as the compulsory ones. RS was compulsory for me. My school basically said if you don't do a language you'll be screwed.
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username3571846
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Not me personally. I'm more STEM-based and took French, Geography, Religious Studies and Triple Science which fits me perfectly.

However, if you were in top set for science, you HAD to pick Triple Science. For me this wasn't an issue as I love science, however many people in my class are annoyed that they had to pick science instead of something they would have enjoyed.

We have a total of 13 STEM lessons a week and 2 of each option we chose, so for some people this is annoying and not fair, but for me it's amazing.
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BabyPoppadom
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(Original post by KIMIZS)
Hi everyone! I'm writing an essay about teenagers feeling pressured to do STEM subjects at GCSE. I'm focusing on how Maths and Science are compulsory (whether it be single, double or triple) and how humanities, such as History or RS, aren't (according to gov. standards). However, I can't generalise a whole nation of teenagers, so I would greatly appreciate it if you could share your experience when you were choosing your GCSEs.
Here are some questions I'm looking to address:
Did you have to drop a favourite subject to make room for a compulsory one?
Did your school put pressure on you to do subjects such as maths or science, but not art or DT?
Do you feel as though it's unfair that you're not very scientific, and you've known this for a while, yet you have to deal with science GCSE?
In your school, do you see science-y pupils being able to take the subjects they enjoy with enough room in their timetable, while creative pupils have to drop some of their favourite subjects to make room for science?
Thanks!
I absolutely hated maths at GCSE. I was on the brink of failing maths and at risk of not getting into my sixth form despite me being incredible at english. I was predicted an 8 in english but a 4 in maths and thought I was going to attain lower. I spent nights sobbing at polynomials and probability whilst breezing through english essays. I ended up getting a 9 in English lit, 8 in lang and a 6 in maths. I am in the top 3% of students in the UK for English literature but may have not been able to do it at a level because of a ****ing maths gcse. ridiculous. I know people who got a 7 in english and a 3 in maths who can't pursue english further due to their maths grade.
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username3434964
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No. I am in top set for science and enjoy it. I haven't chosen my options yet. As I am in top set (and usually get good scores on tests etc) I feel pressurised into doing triple science. I don't think that I will be able to do computer science if I do triple science which is annoying


Also my school doesn't off GCSE phycology... Only at A-Level
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12ksmith
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(Original post by Hyper_Kola)
Not me personally. I'm more STEM-based and took French, Geography, Religious Studies and Triple Science which fits me perfectly.

However, if you were in top set for science, you HAD to pick Triple Science. For me this wasn't an issue as I love science, however many people in my class are annoyed that they had to pick science instead of something they would have enjoyed.

We have a total of 13 STEM lessons a week and 2 of each option we chose, so for some people this is annoying and not fair, but for me it's amazing.
I guess you could just fluke tests on purpose to get moved down into double science.
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tamil fever
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pressured to do a language and geo or history
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username3571846
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(Original post by 12ksmith)
I guess you could just fluke tests on purpose to get moved down into double science.
No one was told that this would be the case, so that wouldn't work for those who wanted to move down unfortunately.
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_gcx
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I think you'll find that more people are pressured into doing ebacc subjects as opposed to stem subjects.
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Hirsty97
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Triple science which I couldn't be bothered with
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12ksmith
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(Original post by Hyper_Kola)
No one was told that this would be the case, so that wouldn't work for those who wanted to move down unfortunately.
I’m pretty sure it would work. If they see that you are getting straight U,E,F grades then the teachers aren’t going to put you in for triple science come year 11.

Tbh there is not even that much difference, it’s just that the triple science guys have to do another module of work after learning the double science stuff.
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username3571846
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(Original post by 12ksmith)
I’m pretty sure it would work. If they see that you are getting straight U,E,F grades then the teachers aren’t going to put you in for triple science come year 11.

Tbh there is not even that much difference, it’s just that the triple science guys have to do another module of work after learning the double science stuff.
Yeah I know, it's just annoying for the others that wanted to do History or something and would have taken it at A level or something but can't now.

Also, we had to choose our options in year 8, and they were final. We aren't allowed to change science sets.
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12ksmith
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(Original post by Hyper_Kola)
Yeah I know, it's just annoying for the others that wanted to do History or something and would have taken it at A level or something but can't now.

Also, we had to choose our options in year 8, and they were final. We aren't allowed to change science sets.
Yeah that’s pretty harsh. At mine we were given a choice (even tho all of the top set peeps carried on to triple). At our school even if you did double science you still had the same number of science lessons as the people who did triple. So it wasn’t like the double sci guys could pick up another subject or anything.

They should allow more flexibility at gcse. I know people who are still changing A level courses 5 weeks in - so why couldn’t this be the case at GCSE?
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wavines.s
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(Original post by KIMIZS)
Hi everyone! I'm writing an essay about teenagers feeling pressured to do STEM subjects at GCSE. I'm focusing on how Maths and Science are compulsory (whether it be single, double or triple) and how humanities, such as History or RS, aren't (according to gov. standards). However, I can't generalise a whole nation of teenagers, so I would greatly appreciate it if you could share your experience when you were choosing your GCSEs.
Here are some questions I'm looking to address:
Did you have to drop a favourite subject to make room for a compulsory one?
Did your school put pressure on you to do subjects such as maths or science, but not art or DT?
Do you feel as though it's unfair that you're not very scientific, and you've known this for a while, yet you have to deal with science GCSE?
In your school, do you see science-y pupils being able to take the subjects they enjoy with enough room in their timetable, while creative pupils have to drop some of their favourite subjects to make room for science?
Thanks!
I felt really pressured into taking a humanity (Geography) and Triple science to get the english baccalaureate. my school made the baccalaureate sound like some magical thing that we all MUST get or else we won't be able to get good jobs etc.
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username3571846
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(Original post by 12ksmith)
Yeah that’s pretty harsh. At mine we were given a choice (even tho all of the top set peeps carried on to triple). At our school even if you did double science you still had the same number of science lessons as the people who did triple. So it wasn’t like the double sci guys could pick up another subject or anything.

They should allow more flexibility at gcse. I know people who are still changing A level courses 5 weeks in - so why couldn’t this be the case at GCSE?
Yeah it is. Loads of people were upset I think.
And yeah I know, it's totally not fair - especially for those people who didn't even want to take it in the first place. Hopefully the 'rules' will change soon so people can do what they actually want to do.
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12ksmith
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(Original post by Hyper_Kola)
Yeah it is. Loads of people were upset I think.
And yeah I know, it's totally not fair - especially for those people who didn't even want to take it in the first place. Hopefully the 'rules' will change soon so people can do what they actually want to do.
I wish they gave more info about each subject before you decided. I felt I just chose subjects that I thought I would enjoy - but it turns out I found them really boring
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artful_lounger
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My parents required me to do a language, although it wasn't required at the school I did my GCSEs at (it was required at the school I did my 6th form at for their GCSE students, however). I was required to do GCSE PE, despite suffering from crippling asthma, as part of a failed initiative by my school to live up to their "sports college" title. As a result, I had one fewer option

I was also definitely pressured by my school into doing a vocational course, and felt tricked into doing DIDA when I realised afterwards what a worthless qualification it was (also a stressful waste of time due to poor teaching). Then again, that schools progression to HE was pretty poor; in fact even just it's progression to 6th form (this was before study from 16-18 was mandatory) was actually pretty poor with only about 20% of any cohort continuing to year 12, and about half of those leaving and going to the HE college in the next town to do something less academic before year 13.

Also we only had double science, not sure if this was relevant but a lot of people are discussing it otherwise. I'm not even sure if triple science existed then...I definitely hadn't heard of single science subjects until when I was looking at uni applications that mentioned them as accepted alongside double science
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username3542704
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(Original post by KIMIZS)
Hi everyone! I'm writing an essay about teenagers feeling pressured to do STEM subjects at GCSE. I'm focusing on how Maths and Science are compulsory (whether it be single, double or triple) and how humanities, such as History or RS, aren't (according to gov. standards). However, I can't generalise a whole nation of teenagers, so I would greatly appreciate it if you could share your experience when you were choosing your GCSEs.
Here are some questions I'm looking to address:
Did you have to drop a favourite subject to make room for a compulsory one?
Did your school put pressure on you to do subjects such as maths or science, but not art or DT?
Do you feel as though it's unfair that you're not very scientific, and you've known this for a while, yet you have to deal with science GCSE?
In your school, do you see science-y pupils being able to take the subjects they enjoy with enough room in their timetable, while creative pupils have to drop some of their favourite subjects to make room for science?
Thanks!
Our school told us to do subjects that linked with the Ebbac (English baccalaureate) and persuaded us that this "qualification" will give us an advantage of being chosen into a university.
The Ebbac consists of English, maths, history or geography, sciences and a language. So i ended up picking spanish which i hated but if this gave me an advantage of getting into a university then the hard work would pay off.
However, after doing some research, I found out that the Ebbac is not even a qualification. Its too see how well secondary schools do which really annoyed me but fortunately i had the chance to change subjects.
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username3571846
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(Original post by 12ksmith)
I wish they gave more info about each subject before you decided. I felt I just chose subjects that I thought I would enjoy - but it turns out I found them really boring
Yeah that seemed to be the case for most people I know to be honest. They should definitely provide info for each subject because so many kids give up if they're uninterested and it's not fair.
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12ksmith
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(Original post by Hyper_Kola)
Yeah that seemed to be the case for most people I know to be honest. They should definitely provide info for each subject because so many kids give up if they're uninterested and it's not fair.
Yeah, I wish I had carried on with a language
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