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    Around a month ago, I talked to my headmaster in person about my progress on GCSEs and a bit on my A-level choices. I told him that I chose Maths, Physics, Further Maths and Chemistry. My headmaster then he says, "The norm is to drop one at the end of year 12 if you do 4."

    WTF? There is literally no point dropping one at the end of year 12 because AS is basically useless now. The 3 efficient options are: 1. take 3 from the start. 2. do 4 till the end of year 13. 3.drop 1 within the first month of year 12.

    My question is: Which option is the best for my situation? (I am definitely not dropping Maths, Further Maths or Physics. However, I am quite interested in Chemistry. And I will need it if I decide to do Natural Sciences in Cambridge (likely) or chemical engineering in any Uni (quite unlikely).
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    Can you do all of maths in year 12 (accelerated further maths?) That way you still have 3 a levels in year 13, not 4.
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    I'm having the same trouble - I want to do 4 as I want to be a competitive Cambridge applicant (History/Linguistics - so taking History, English Language, French and Psychology) but my parents are trying to persuade me to do 3 as they think I'll get too stressed. Not sure what to do tbh. I would say you should do what you think you can handle, and if that means doing 4 to get where you want to be, then do 4. You can always drop one near the start of year 12 if it's too much
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    (Original post by thomastaitai)
    Around a month ago, I talked to my headmaster in person about my progress on GCSEs and a bit on my A-level choices. I told him that I chose Maths, Physics, Further Maths and Chemistry. My headmaster then he says, "The norm is to drop one at the end of year 12 if you do 4."

    WTF? There is literally no point dropping one at the end of year 12 because AS is basically useless now. The 3 efficient options are: 1. take 3 from the start. 2. do 4 till the end of year 13. 3.drop 1 within the first month of year 12.

    My question is: Which option is the best for my situation? (I am definitely not dropping Maths, Further Maths or Physics. However, I am quite interested in Chemistry. And I will need it if I decide to do Natural Sciences in Cambridge (likely) or chemical engineering in any Uni (quite unlikely).
    These subjects go so well together and if you’re passionate about them, take all 4 and see how it goes. You might find that you love all of them and that you don’t want to drop one, but if one is drastically different to GCSEs and you don’t enjoy it, at least you can drop it? There’s also the option of doing an EPQ which most universities love, some will even lower your entry requirements if you do it. I know my friend talked about hers in her Oxford interview. Bear this in mind because it takes up quite a bit of time if you want to do it. Have a look at Cambridge’s requirements for those courses, see if you need further maths that sort of thing. All I can say is good luck - if you want to do those subjects, no one should stop you. A-levels are tough but if you’re willing to put in the work to achieve those big ambitions like Oxbridge, go for it!
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    (Original post by thomastaitai)
    My question is: Which option is the best for my situation? (I am definitely not dropping Maths, Further Maths or Physics. However, I am quite interested in Chemistry. And I will need it if I decide to do Natural Sciences in Cambridge (likely) or chemical engineering in any Uni (quite unlikely).
    you don't actually need chemistry for natsci at Cambridge, although not having it would limit your first year options.

    I take all four of these at a level, so it's certainly possible, and if you're competent enough to make a competitive Cambridge application you shouldn't struggle too much as long as you are willing to spend the time.
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    I want to do the same options as you! Haha what a coincidence. Sorry i cant help with this im only in year 10.

    But if he said ‘the norm’ it doesnt mean you have to
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    Just do 4 and when the school tries to get you to drop one and you are coping, tell em to **** off haha.
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    Maths, Further Maths and Physics fit really well together compared to if one was subsituted for Chemistry, but not doing Chemistry would limit the options you would have with doing some of the Natrual Sciences modules. It depends on what modules you would prefer, ideally try to do the 4 to keep your options open if you're undecided. If doing Chemistry as well as starts to affect you getting the A*A*A requirement then maybe think about dropping it. If you have an idea of what sort of modules to prefer I'd check the Cambridge Natrual Sciences page to see what subjects they ask for each different module. Only other thing I could say is maybe speak to a teacher about it to ask their opinion but it will be your choice at the end of the day not theirs.

    Good Luck
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    (Original post by aesthete1)
    you don't actually need chemistry for natsci at Cambridge, although not having it would limit your first year options.

    I take all four of these at a level, so it's certainly possible, and if you're competent enough to make a competitive Cambridge application you shouldn't struggle too much as long as you are willing to spend the time.
    They also might question your motivation to do natural sciences if you dropped chemistry.
 
 
 

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