Turn on thread page Beta
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    5
    ReputationRep:
    I'm taking 11 GCSEs and GCSE equivalents in Latin and Further Maths, 3 of those in my spare time. I should get 10+ A*s. Ideally, I would like to take Computer Science at Oxford. I am definitely taking Maths and Further Maths, however, if I do 4 A levels my remaining options will be two out of Physics, Computer Science and French. I really enjoy French, however, it is less relevant to my subject than Physics or Computer Science, although I am additionally interested in Linguistics and Computational Linguistics. On the other hand, Computer Science seems to be considered a 'softer'subject, and some programs ask for a science or specifically Physics. How hard do you think it would be to take 5 A levels, and if I take 4 which should I choose?
    Offline

    11
    ReputationRep:
    I think it would be ridiculous hard to take 5 a levels. Most people only take 3, so 5 would be extreme. Any university should accept you with 3 a levels so long as you get appropriate grades in them. If you really wish, take 4 a levels but I can't stress how much I presume you would regret to take 5. I have a friend who took 4 A levels, she regretted it later as it is better to have 4 great A levels than 3 average ones. Though at the end of the day, it is your decision to make. I also recommend taking the subjects that relate to what you want to do in the future, or perhaps look at the universities you want to apply for and see what A levels they require you to have to be on the specific course that you want.
    Posted on the TSR App. Download from Apple or Google Play
    Offline

    11
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Molybdenum42)
    I'm taking 11 GCSEs and GCSE equivalents in Latin and Further Maths, 3 of those in my spare time. I should get 10+ A*s. Ideally, I would like to take Computer Science at Oxford.
    I'm very glad to hear that!

    I am definitely taking Maths and Further Maths,
    Maths is essential, and Further Maths is highly recommended, so that's a good start.

    however, if I do 4 A levels my remaining options will be two out of Physics, Computer Science and French. I really enjoy French, however, it is less relevant to my subject than Physics or Computer Science, although I am additionally interested in Linguistics and Computational Linguistics. On the other hand, Computer Science seems to be considered a 'softer'subject, and some programs ask for a science or specifically Physics.
    Computer Science isn't a softer subject. Those who consider it so, probably haven't kept up with the revisions to the A Level in the last few years. Certainly, at Oxford we recommend it. I consider it the third most useful A Level for a CS degree (after Maths and Further Maths).

    Physics is vaguely useful, in the sense that it's a mathematical subject, like Computer Science; taking it gets you used to applying mathematics, and in particular performing abstractions -- translating from a physical or computational situation into a mathematical model. I consider it the fourth most useful A Level.

    However, the knowledge gained from a Physics A Level certainly isn't necessary to study Computer Science. In particular, hardware courses normally start from the level of gates, and abstract away from how those gates operate (which does require Physics): the gates are treated as black boxes, and then we build up from there to understand how to build complete computers.

    If you think you would prefer French, then do that. It won't make any difference to your chances of getting in to Oxford.

    How hard do you think it would be to take 5 A levels, and if I take 4 which should I choose?
    I can't answer the former question without knowing you better, and knowing how you'd cope. I would caution you against spreading yourself too thinly, though: doing well in three or four A Levels is far better than being mediocre in five.

    Gavin
 
 
 

University open days

  1. University of Bradford
    University-wide Postgraduate
    Wed, 25 Jul '18
  2. University of Buckingham
    Psychology Taster Tutorial Undergraduate
    Wed, 25 Jul '18
  3. Bournemouth University
    Clearing Campus Visit Undergraduate
    Wed, 1 Aug '18
Poll
How are you feeling in the run-up to Results Day 2018?
Help with your A-levels

All the essentials

The adventure begins mug

Student life: what to expect

What it's really like going to uni

Rosette

Essay expert

Learn to write like a pro with our ultimate essay guide.

Uni match

Uni match

Our tool will help you find the perfect course for you

Study planner

Create a study plan

Get your head around what you need to do and when with the study planner tool.

Study planner

Resources by subject

Everything from mind maps to class notes.

Hands typing

Degrees without fees

Discover more about degree-level apprenticeships.

A student doing homework

Study tips from A* students

Students who got top grades in their A-levels share their secrets

Study help links and info

Can you help? Study help unanswered threadsRules and posting guidelines

Groups associated with this forum:

View associated groups

The Student Room, Get Revising and Marked by Teachers are trading names of The Student Room Group Ltd.

Register Number: 04666380 (England and Wales), VAT No. 806 8067 22 Registered Office: International House, Queens Road, Brighton, BN1 3XE

Write a reply...
Reply
Hide
Reputation gems: You get these gems as you gain rep from other members for making good contributions and giving helpful advice.