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    Unsure about what I wanted to do as a degree, I have chosen Physics, Geography & History as my A-Level subjects, as I enjoy them the most.

    Is Physics a good subject for Geography? I feel that Biology and Economics or Politics would go a lot better for Geography.
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    I’d say only do physics if you really want to pursue it, because if you don’t get a good grade in it (and it’s so hard to get a good grade in physics - my sister got an A* at GCSE then D at AS) then it might limit your choices for applying for geography
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    Physics is fine, although it doesn't convey any great benefit in of itself. You will also need to put slightly more work in than those taking Physics and Maths to keep your maths practice up to scratch. While you won't need to learn any new maths, they have the benefit of essentially practicing maths every single week (or probably every day) which means that the maths in the A-level Physics course won't require a second thought.

    It's worth bearing in mind, if you swapped history for Maths you would be qualified to still pursue Geography, but also many Earth Sciences courses, such as Geology or Geophysics, if you particularly enjoyed the "Physical Geography" content and using scientific method to explore things. You could take 4, but there isn't much benefit to that from the Geography perspective, and from the Earth Sciences perspective another science subject would be better as a 4th (and it's still not really advisable then). Unless you are very weak in the sciences, and have no interest in the physical side of Geography (in which case I wouldn't recommend Physics anyway) this would probably be the better option to keep your choices open down the line.
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    This partially depends on whether you're hoping to do a geography degree which is more human based (e.g. BA Geography or Human Geography), or more scientific (e.g. BSc Geography or Physical Geography). Economics or politics would probably be better suited to a human geog degree, whereas physics or biology would be better for a physical geog degree (these often require 2 sciences at A Level, which geography and physics/biology might meet, depending on the uni)
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    (Original post by Leviathan1741)
    This partially depends on whether you're hoping to do a geography degree which is more human based (e.g. BA Geography or Human Geography), or more scientific (e.g. BSc Geography or Physical Geography). Economics or politics would probably be better suited to a human geog degree, whereas physics or biology would be better for a physical geog degree (these often require 2 sciences at A Level, which geography and physics/biology might meet, depending on the uni)
    I enjoy both sides of Geography, and a bit of science and humanities, so lucky my A-Levels satisfy both
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    (Original post by Fonzworth)
    I enjoy both sides of Geography, and a bit of science and humanities, so lucky my A-Levels satisfy both
    If you're quite certain you don't want to pursue an Earth Sciences course and are interested in both sides of Geography, I would strongly recommend Maths over Physics for that particular case.

    Quantitative methods are used in both sides, in different ways, and the Mechanics content of Maths is useful and relevant for physical geography (not that you'll be solving mechanics problems, but for contextually understanding the forces at work) and the Statistics content is very applicable to both sides, but particularly the human geography side.

    Calculus, which would the main part of the rest of the A-level, will help you contextualise the different aspects of rates of change that apply to both sides of geography, and may help you in developing simple models for project/dissertation modules.

    It's also required or preferred for many related courses, like Economics, Land Economy, Human Sciences and the like, so if you find yourself drawn more to one of those related niches, it's a better and more transferable background for those.
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    (Original post by artful_lounger)
    If you're quite certain you don't want to pursue an Earth Sciences course and are interested in both sides of Geography, I would strongly recommend Maths over Physics for that particular case.

    Quantitative methods are used in both sides, in different ways, and the Mechanics content of Maths is useful and relevant for physical geography (not that you'll be solving mechanics problems, but for contextually understanding the forces at work) and the Statistics content is very applicable to both sides, but particularly the human geography side.

    Calculus, which would the main part of the rest of the A-level, will help you contextualise the different aspects of rates of change that apply to both sides of geography, and may help you in developing simple models for project/dissertation modules.

    It's also required or preferred for many related courses, like Economics, Land Economy, Human Sciences and the like, so if you find yourself drawn more to one of those related niches, it's a better and more transferable background for those.
    I would, but I don't enjoy Maths as a subject. Physics, on the other hand, I enjoy, as it's applied Maths, and feels like I'm given a recipe and I just need to use the right ingredients, but Maths just feels like im thrown a bunch of ingredients and need to figure it out.
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    (Original post by Fonzworth)
    I would, but I don't enjoy Maths as a subject. Physics, on the other hand, I enjoy, as it's applied Maths, and feels like I'm given a recipe and I just need to use the right ingredients, but Maths just feels like im thrown a bunch of ingredients and need to figure it out.
    I would caution that at A-level, Physics is much more like the latter than the former - perhaps discuss it with your teachers to see which would be better?

    Also fundamentally all of A-level Maths is "applied" maths really...
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    (Original post by artful_lounger)
    I would caution that at A-level, Physics is much more like the latter than the former - perhaps discuss it with your teachers to see which would be better?

    Also fundamentally all of A-level Maths is "applied" maths really...
    So far I haven't found the maths that difficult and my teachers have only said that if I can do GCSE Math, then I can do the math in Physics.

    Compared to sitting in some of the Maths lessons, I found it ultimately boring and difficult. When it's a small area of Maths then I'm alright, but with how wide the Maths curriculum is I wouldn't be able to cope.

    Would you honestly recommend sticking with Physics?
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    (Original post by Fonzworth)
    So far I haven't found the maths that difficult and my teachers have only said that if I can do GCSE Math, then I can do the math in Physics.

    Compared to sitting in some of the Maths lessons, I found it ultimately boring and difficult. When it's a small area of Maths then I'm alright, but with how wide the Maths curriculum is I wouldn't be able to cope.
    Yes it only requires GCSE Maths - however the problems are nothing like those in GCSE Maths, or even GCSE Physics. You need to be able to derive formulae for yourself (or else you're stuck trying to memorise some two dozen odd formulae when you could only have to learn a handful and derive the others) in exams, and then use these to solve unfamiliar problems. They won't necessarily give you the formulae you need to begin with - sometimes they'll have part of it available, sometimes you'll need to either have memorised it or, as above, have learnt a core formula and be able to rearrange and otherwise reason your way to derive a related one to solve the problem.
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    (Original post by artful_lounger)
    Yes it only requires GCSE Maths - however the problems are nothing like those in GCSE Maths, or even GCSE Physics. You need to be able to derive formulae for yourself (or else you're stuck trying to memorise some two dozen odd formulae when you could only have to learn a handful and derive the others) in exams, and then use these to solve unfamiliar problems. They won't necessarily give you the formulae you need to begin with - sometimes they'll have part of it available, sometimes you'll need to either have memorised it or, as above, have learnt a core formula and be able to rearrange and otherwise reason your way to derive a related one to solve the problem.
    We've started some practice on deriving equations, so far I've found it alright. Not sure if you saw my edit, but would you honestly recommend me keeping or changing Physics?
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    (Original post by Fonzworth)
    We've started some practice on deriving equations, so far I've found it alright. Not sure if you saw my edit, but would you honestly recommend me keeping or changing Physics?
    There's no reason to change if you're certain you won't pick up Maths - you don't gain or lose anything by doing Physics. Just bear in mind, it's quite possible you'll find the relative difficulty level ramps up a bit quicker than your other courses, so be prepared to dedicate extra time to it if necessary.
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    (Original post by Fonzworth)
    Unsure about what I wanted to do as a degree, I have chosen Physics, Geography & History as my A-Level subjects, as I enjoy them the most.

    Is Physics a good subject for Geography? I feel that Biology and Economics or Politics would go a lot better for Geography.
    I'd agree with artful_lounger that A Level Maths would be more useful than Physics for you but on the other hand those A Levels will fulfil any Geography course requirement so if you're happy with them then that's fine.
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    (Original post by Plagioclase)
    I'd agree with artful_lounger that A Level Maths would be more useful than Physics for you but on the other hand those A Levels will fulfil any Geography course requirement so if you're happy with them then that's fine.
    Would you say its better to specialise in essay-based subjects or keep Physics? I plan to either do Geography, Geology, History, Law or a social science related course (like Human, Social & Political Sciences). Currently, I think it will most likely be one of the first two but they are all possibilities. Physics will help with Geography and will be needed for Geology, so again, would it be best to specialise with essay subjects or keep with Physics to help with Geography and allow me to do Geology?
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    (Original post by Fonzworth)
    Would you say its better to specialise in essay-based subjects or keep Physics? I plan to either do Geography, Geology, History, Law or a social science related course (like Human, Social & Political Sciences). Currently, I think it will most likely be one of the first two but they are all possibilities. Physics will help with Geography and will be needed for Geology, so again, would it be best to specialise with essay subjects or keep with Physics to help with Geography and allow me to do Geology?
    As you say, if you think there's a reasonable probability that you will end up applying for Geology, you can't replace Physics with an essay-based subject. Otherwise it's really up to you, humanities courses at university are generally quite flexible with A Level subjects so if you wanted to replace Physics with a (preferably facilitating) essay-based subject, you could. I don't think it would give you any huge advantages because you already have History.

    My main recommendation really is to make a decision. I'm not saying you need to decide what exact course you want to apply for but if you can make a decision as to whether you want to apply for Geology/Geography OR Geography/History/Law/HSPS then I think that would do you a lot of favours in terms of picking A Level subjects. It's very difficult to choose appropriate A Level subjects when you don't even know whether you want to take a STEM subject or humanities subject at uni!
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    (Original post by Plagioclase)
    As you say, if you think there's a reasonable probability that you will end up applying for Geology, you can't replace Physics with an essay-based subject. Otherwise it's really up to you, humanities courses at university are generally quite flexible with A Level subjects so if you wanted to replace Physics with a (preferably facilitating) essay-based subject, you could. I don't think it would give you any huge advantages because you already have History.

    My main recommendation really is to make a decision. I'm not saying you need to decide what exact course you want to apply for but if you can make a decision as to whether you want to apply for Geology/Geography OR Geography/History/Law/HSPS then I think that would do you a lot of favours in terms of picking A Level subjects. It's very difficult to choose appropriate A Level subjects when you don't even know whether you want to take a STEM subject or humanities subject at uni!
    Thanks for the advice. Realistically, I could see myself going down the humanities route. I’ve found Physics alright so far and already spent quite a lot on textbooks etc. I really enjoy Physics so that’s why I took it but prefer humanities overall. My main concern is that I see a lot of people say that they’re getting low grades in Physics. It might also take a while to catch up if I do change subjects
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    (Original post by Fonzworth)
    Thanks for the advice. Realistically, I could see myself going down the humanities route. I’ve found Physics alright so far and already spent quite a lot on textbooks etc. I really enjoy Physics so that’s why I took it but prefer humanities overall. My main concern is that I see a lot of people say that they’re getting low grades in Physics. It might also take a while to catch up if I do change subjects
    Grade distributions are roughly equal in all subjects, perhaps it's just that the transition from GCSE to A Level is more obvious in Physics, I don't think it's fundamentally more difficult. If you're enjoying Physics then I'd say keep it, your current selection of A Levels basically keeps all the doors you're interested in open for you
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    (Original post by Plagioclase)
    Grade distributions are roughly equal in all subjects, perhaps it's just that the transition from GCSE to A Level is more obvious in Physics, I don't think it's fundamentally more difficult. If you're enjoying Physics then I'd say keep it, your current selection of A Levels basically keeps all the doors you're interested in open for you
    I’ll make sure to work hard at it. Not sure how admission tutors view it but personally I enjoy having a variety of science and humanity subjects :P
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