S_keys
Badges: 3
Rep:
?
#1
Report Thread starter 8 months ago
#1
I am currently in year 12 studying maths, further, chemistry and physics. I am looking to apply for natural sciences at different universities, top of the list being Cambridge. However, I am not sure if I can get further maths to an A or A* grade so I am considering dropping it after the AS exams. The uni websites say I don’t have to do further maths but realistically should I be doing it? I want to guarantee A*s in the other 3 but I don’t know if I can do that with further maths as well. My teachers are giving conflicting advice as some say it would be better to have no further maths grade than a bad one, whereas another says I have to get an A* in A level further maths or I can’t study natural sciences. Any help or clarification with this would be great, as you might be able to tell from the time I am posting this I am very stressed about it.
Last edited by S_keys; 8 months ago
0
reply
milliejayne19
Badges: 12
Rep:
?
#2
Report 8 months ago
#2
You don't *need* further maths to study natural sciences at Cambridge, however many people who make competitive applications for natural sciences also take further maths as a fourth subject.

The typical offer is A*A*A with at least two science/maths subjects. Whether you choose to drop further maths or not, you still have the right subjects to do the course so I can't see why you would be at any disadvantage if you were predicted A*A*A or A*A*A*, alongside having a good AS grade (preferably an A) in further maths.

Your best bet is probably to email the admissions tutors at Cambridge to ask what they're looking for
Last edited by milliejayne19; 8 months ago
0
reply
Dancer2001
Badges: 19
Rep:
?
#3
Report 8 months ago
#3
I would wait until you get your results in summer to make a decision about it. Emailing the admissions tutors would be a good idea though. When you see your grades in summer, you will have a better idea of whether you can do well in all four subjects.
0
reply
University of Bath
Badges: 12
Rep:
?
#4
Report 8 months ago
#4
(Original post by S_keys)
I am currently in year 12 studying maths, further, chemistry and physics. I am looking to apply for natural sciences at different universities, top of the list being Cambridge. However, I am not sure if I can get further maths to an A or A* grade so I am considering dropping it after the AS exams. The uni websites say I don’t have to do further maths but realistically should I be doing it? I want to guarantee A*s in the other 3 but I don’t know if I can do that with further maths as well. My teachers are giving conflicting advice as some say it would be better to have no further maths grade than a bad one, whereas another says I have to get an A* in A level further maths or I can’t study natural sciences. Any help or clarification with this would be great, as you might be able to tell from the time I am posting this I am very stressed about it.
Hi there,
I am a current NatSci student, so hopefully I can help
Most universities do not require you to have further maths in order to take NatSci, as you've noted yourself, as it is a more science-focused course, as opposed to maths. If you do not think you can achieve an A or A* in further maths, and you do not need it to meet uni entry requirements, then I imagine it would be better to drop it. That way you have more time to dedicate to the 3 subjects you need to get into the unis you want, and increase your chances of getting the best possible grades. Rather have 3 amazing A-level grades, than 4 mediocre ones.

Your one teacher is wrong in saying that you cannot study NatSci without further maths, as evidenced by these excerpts from the entry requirements from some of the top unis in the UK to study NatSci:


  • Uni of Bath: A*AA, "and you can be considered with any of the following combinations:
    Biology and Chemistry
    Chemistry and Mathematics
    Biology, Mathematics and Physics
    Chemistry, Mathematics and Physics". Further maths is not a required subject for any streams (ref. table on page 2 of this document).
  • Cambridge: A*A*A, "The more useful combinations are:
    A Level Biology, A Level Chemistry, and AS Level Mathematics or Physics
    A Level Chemistry, A Level Mathematics, and AS Level Biology or Physics
    A Level Physics, A Level Mathematics and AS Level Further Mathematics". Further maths is only listed as an essential subject for the physics stream IF you didn't take physics (i.e. you can have physics and maths, OR maths and further maths, but no physics). As you take physics, further maths is not required.
  • UCL: "A*AA, with at least two in Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics or Physics....All Physics streams require at least a grade A in Mathematics and Physics at GCE A level or equivalent...The Mathematics and Statistics stream requires at least a grade A in GCE A level Mathematics or equivalent....Further Mathematics is not a requirement on the Mathematics and Statistics stream.". Further maths is not required, not even for the maths stream.
As you can gather, further maths is not required for NatSci in most unis. It is useful for physics streams, but it is not at all necessary if you already have physics and maths. Essentially, if you don't think you'll do well in further maths, I would suggest taking the AS exam and then dropping it, as you don't want to jeopardise your essential grades.

I hope this has helped,
Jessica, a third year NatSci student
0
reply
David Getling
Badges: 19
Rep:
?
#5
Report 8 months ago
#5
(Original post by S_keys)
I am currently in year 12 studying maths, further, chemistry and physics. I am looking to apply for natural sciences at different universities, top of the list being Cambridge. However, I am not sure if I can get further maths to an A or A* grade so I am considering dropping it after the AS exams. The uni websites say I don’t have to do further maths but realistically should I be doing it? I want to guarantee A*s in the other 3 but I don’t know if I can do that with further maths as well. My teachers are giving conflicting advice as some say it would be better to have no further maths grade than a bad one, whereas another says I have to get an A* in A level further maths or I can’t study natural sciences. Any help or clarification with this would be great, as you might be able to tell from the time I am posting this I am very stressed about it.
Think of further maths as another opportunity to pick up an A or A*. If you get your A or A* grades in the other subjects no university is going to think worse of you because of your further maths grade, so you have nothing to lose, and teachers telling you that a poor grade is worse than none are talking rubbish. Anyway, you have said you might not get an A or A* in further maths, not a poor grade.

The only sensible reason for dropping further maths would be if you really thought that it would interfere with doing well in your other subjects. This is extremely unlikely. My nephew used this excuse to drop physics, but the real reason was he was just plain lazy.
0
reply
X

Quick Reply

Attached files
Write a reply...
Reply
new posts
Back
to top
Latest
My Feed

See more of what you like on
The Student Room

You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

Personalise

Are you travelling in the Uni student travel window (3-9 Dec) to go home for Christmas?

Yes (91)
27.91%
No - I have already returned home (43)
13.19%
No - I plan on travelling outside these dates (62)
19.02%
No - I'm staying at my term time address over Christmas (32)
9.82%
No - I live at home during term anyway (98)
30.06%

Watched Threads

View All