R0bsterL0bster
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#1
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#1
I am currently in my first couple of weeks of the IB program and I thought I would be prudent to check university requirements. From this I found that all subjects which require Bio HL also need either Maths HL or another science HL. I was doing History SL and am now thinking to keep my options open to do it at HL also because Oxford have a 22% admission rate for History.
My IBs are as follows ( I chose them for an all-rounder look- don't judge) :
Biology HL - 9 at iGCSE
Economics HL
French HL- 9 at iGCSE
Maths A & I SL- 8 at iGCSE
English SL- 9 at iGCSE
History SL- 9 at iGCSE
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artful_lounger
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Do you want to study history at university, absent your belief you would have a better chance of getting into that subject than something else? Unless you have a vested interested in and motivation for the subject I wouldn't recommend pursuing it at university, and it may not necessarily be worth taking to HL now (especially if you aren't that invested in it currently). I mean if you wanted a subject which was "easy" to get into then statistically archaeology/classics courses tend to be the least competitive. That doesn't mean it's easier to get in, as they will often look more for genuine motivation for the subject, and while fewer may apply (and hence a larger proportion get in) this may well be more due to self selection of those genuinely interested in that subject.

I would note there are some courses which prefer or require just one STEM subject to A-level, such as many psychology courses, human sciences, and similar. Also bear in mind many STEM courses are available with a foundation year; taking HL Biology might help you confirm your interested in that area, so you can pursue a course with a foundation year to pick up any "missing" background. However, most history/historical degrees at university require history to HL, and these aren't normally available with a foundation year. So if you are genuinely interested in history and may want to continue it to degree level, I would suggest you take it to HL (whether this is in place of biology or something else is up to your interests).
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R0bsterL0bster
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#3
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(Original post by artful_lounger)
Do you want to study history at university, absent your belief you would have a better chance of getting into that subject than something else? Unless you have a vested interested in and motivation for the subject I wouldn't recommend pursuing it at university, and it may not necessarily be worth taking to HL now (especially if you aren't that invested in it currently). I mean if you wanted a subject which was "easy" to get into then statistically archaeology/classics courses tend to be the least competitive. That doesn't mean it's easier to get in, as they will often look more for genuine motivation for the subject, and while fewer may apply (and hence a larger proportion get in) this may well be more due to self selection of those genuinely interested in that subject.

I would note there are some courses which prefer or require just one STEM subject to A-level, such as many psychology courses, human sciences, and similar. Also bear in mind many STEM courses are available with a foundation year; taking HL Biology might help you confirm your interested in that area, so you can pursue a course with a foundation year to pick up any "missing" background. However, most history/historical degrees at university require history to HL, and these aren't normally available with a foundation year. So if you are genuinely interested in history and may want to continue it to degree level, I would suggest you take it to HL (whether this is in place of biology or something else is up to your interests).
Firstly, thanks for replying its very much appreciated. I have got an interest in History which is why I was taking it at SL and am honestly still quite unsure. I am also interested by these foundation courses are these generally for all subjects at all universities. Say I wanted to do Economics at McGill or Biology at Cambridge would there be that option? Thanks again
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artful_lounger
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#4
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(Original post by R0bsterL0bster)
Firstly, thanks for replying its very much appreciated. I have got an interest in History which is why I was taking it at SL and am honestly still quite unsure. I am also interested by these foundation courses are these generally for all subjects at all universities. Say I wanted to do Economics at McGill or Biology at Cambridge would there be that option? Thanks again
I would note my comments were exclusively with regard to UK universities, and may not translate to NA universities. The following likewise applies just to UK universities:

Degrees with foundation years have the foundation year integrated into the full degree course. You cannot, in general, assume that you can start a foundation year at one university and have that accepted for entry to another university. I would usually advise to only apply to a degree with a foundation year if you would be happy completing the full degree at that university.

You can only study biology (indeed any science) at Cambridge through the Natural Sciences Tripos. You are required to have 3 STEM subjects to IB HL/A-level or equivalent, although they may consider 2 such subjects at HL, along with SL Maths (Analysis & Approaches). I don't believe the applications option is generally accepted at either HL or SL. You are usually advised to take chemistry along with biology if you want to apply to natural sciences for biological sciences, and so I would advise if you want to go this route to take HL Chemistry, Biology, and Maths (Analysis & Approaches). Outside of Cambridge, for biology degrees, HL Mathematics is probably unnecessary, so you could likely take SL (again, you should take Analysis & Approaches), however most require a second science subject to HL, and many require this to be chemistry specifically.

Economics degrees in the UK normally require A-level or IB HL Mathematics (again, they will normally expect the Analysis & Approaches version) as the only prerequisite. No economics degree in the UK I'm aware of requires you to have previously studied economics, but almost all of them require maths to an appropriate level.
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