rio.everitt
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I’m naturally better at history and find it an interesting subject but I also really enjoy physics especially astrophysics. I have chosen history economics maths and physics for a level but don’t know which to drop. I would love to do both but they don’t really go well. Any advice or experience?
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artful_lounger
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History is no less an odd combination with physics than economics, in my opinion. I would note however A-level History is required by the vast majority of history degrees, while A-level Economics isn't required by any degree at any university that I'm aware of. Taking A-level History may then give you a slightly broader range of options. It would also be good preparation if you wanted to go into a course such as the history & philosophy of science, or if you wanted to do a joint honours course like physics & philosophy. Of course for a physics degree generally speaking A-level Further Maths would be the best preparation as a third subject.
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username5232810
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I agree with the above.
Could you elaborate on what you want to do after A levels?
Taking physics does open up doors to a whole range of STEM subjects (physics, engineering, etc.) but on the other hand, it would make more sense to take Further Maths as well if you are interested in these.
If you’re more likely to go into humanities then history seems like the better option to take.

Personally, I think Physics is MUCH less work than History A level, although this varies person to person, and I didn’t take History so I’m basing this off friends who did take it.
Also, you don’t HAVE to drop a subject right away. You could start the course and see how you feel a little further down the line. Plenty of people do 4 A-levels.
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PetitePanda
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I take both and they dont overlap at all but they are both interesting in their own aspects. What course do you want to do?
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PetitePanda
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(Original post by e^(i*pi) +;undefined)
I agree with the above.
Could you elaborate on what you want to do after A levels?
Taking physics does open up doors to a whole range of STEM subjects (physics, engineering, etc.) but on the other hand, it would make more sense to take Further Maths as well if you are interested in these.
If you’re more likely to go into humanities then history seems like the better option to take.

Personally, I think Physics is MUCH less work than History A level, although this varies person to person, and I didn’t take History so I’m basing this off friends who did take it.
Also, you don’t HAVE to drop a subject right away. You could start the course and see how you feel a little further down the line. Plenty of people do 4 A-levels.
I take both and I find History way less work than Physics tbh but that's because the application of physics is difficult for me at least.
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username5232810
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(Original post by PetitePanda)
I take both and I find History way less work than Physics tbh but that's because the application of physics is difficult for me at least.
Ok fair enough, I guess it depends which you're naturally better at. History probably has more content right? Whereas Physics has a greater level of conceptual difficulty? That's what I'd think but you would know better.
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anonymousgirll1
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History
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Sinnoh
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Bear in mind economics won't be a required subject for anything... :innocent:

I did maths, further maths, physics and history for A-levels and history was definitely a welcome break from the rest. I also had to do by far the least work for it.
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PetitePanda
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(Original post by e^(i*pi) +;undefined)
Ok fair enough, I guess it depends which you're naturally better at. History probably has more content right? Whereas Physics has a greater level of conceptual difficulty? That's what I'd think but you would know better.
True. I totally agree with you
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username5232810
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(Original post by Sinnoh)
Bear in mind economics won't be a required subject for anything... :innocent:

I did maths, further maths, physics and history for A-levels and history was definitely a welcome break from the rest. I also had to do by far the least work for it.
I took the same but with Econ instead of history and hated economics. It's really a matter of personal preference though.
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rio.everitt
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(Original post by artful_lounger)
History is no less an odd combination with physics than economics, in my opinion. I would note however A-level History is required by the vast majority of history degrees, while A-level Economics isn't required by any degree at any university that I'm aware of. Taking A-level History may then give you a slightly broader range of options. It would also be good preparation if you wanted to go into a course such as the history & philosophy of science, or if you wanted to do a joint honours course like physics & philosophy. Of course for a physics degree generally speaking A-level Further Maths would be the best preparation as a third subject.
I agree that A-levels further maths is a great A-level and I would like to do that as I’m studying maths as well. But in my GCSE maths I was scraping a 7 borderline 6, so I don’t know if I could keep up with further
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rio.everitt
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(Original post by e^(i*pi) +;undefined)
I agree with the above.
Could you elaborate on what you want to do after A levels?
Taking physics does open up doors to a whole range of STEM subjects (physics, engineering, etc.) but on the other hand, it would make more sense to take Further Maths as well if you are interested in these.
If you’re more likely to go into humanities then history seems like the better option to take.

Personally, I think Physics is MUCH less work than History A level, although this varies person to person, and I didn’t take History so I’m basing this off friends who did take it.
Also, you don’t HAVE to drop a subject right away. You could start the course and see how you feel a little further down the line. Plenty of people do 4 A-levels.
I’m really torn between studying history at uni and physics more specifically Astrophysics. Two very different studies so I’m having trouble picking my alevels as I don’t know what I should commit to. It’s very interesting you say history alevel is much more difficult than physics, are you saying there’s less content in physics or it’s just generally easier? Have you had any experience with further maths? Because I don’t know whether it’s quite a big jump from normal alevel maths
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rio.everitt
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(Original post by Sinnoh)
Bear in mind economics won't be a required subject for anything... :innocent:

I did maths, further maths, physics and history for A-levels and history was definitely a welcome break from the rest. I also had to do by far the least work for it.
Wow that’s extractor what I want to take. How did you find studying all these subjects was is very difficult and have you got any tips?
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rio.everitt
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(Original post by Sinnoh)
Bear in mind economics won't be a required subject for anything... :innocent:

I did maths, further maths, physics and history for A-levels and history was definitely a welcome break from the rest. I also had to do by far the least work for it.
Wow that’s exactly what I want to take. How did you find studying all these subjects was is very difficult and have you got any tips? Did you ever think about taking Chemistry as well
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username5232810
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(Original post by rio.everitt)
I’m really torn between studying history at uni and physics more specifically Astrophysics. Two very different studies so I’m having trouble picking my alevels as I don’t know what I should commit to. It’s very interesting you say history alevel is much more difficult than physics, are you saying there’s less content in physics or it’s just generally easier? Have you had any experience with further maths? Because I don’t know whether it’s quite a big jump from normal alevel maths
Yeah they are completely different. Maybe try speaking to people who are studying either course to get an idea of what it’s like. Astrophysics will be very heavy on maths. If you want to go down that route, I’d strongly recommend Further Maths.
However, if you struggled to get a 7 in GCSE then Further Maths will definitely be difficult for you. I wouldn’t advise pursuing Astrophysics without Further Maths so this could be a problem for you.
Perhaps it makes more sense to go down the humanities route? Just my opinion, take it with a pinch of salt as I have no experience of history of physics at the undergraduate level.
If you DO go down the humanities route then I don’t see much benefit in taking Physics or Further Maths. You might be better off taking History and Economics for that.
If you take Chemistry then you’ll have the perfect options to go into Engineering/Physics/Maths or other STEM subjects (except for biological ones of course) but you will effectively lose the option of studying History or any humanities at uni.
I hope this helps. I really think it helps if you make a decision between humanities and STEM before you pick your A levels so you can be committed to what you want to study at uni.
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Sinnoh
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(Original post by rio.everitt)
Wow that’s exactly what I want to take. How did you find studying all these subjects was is very difficult and have you got any tips? Did you ever think about taking Chemistry as well
I did consider taking chemistry - especially back in early GCSE times when it was my favourite subject - but I wasn't that interested in the subject by the time GCSEs came around. I was a lot more reluctant to drop history than chemistry. I was alright with not going beyond GCSE for it.
The way my school taught further maths was that we learnt all of A-level maths in year 12 and then all of further maths in year 13. So in effect I wasn't ever doing more than 3 subjects at once. Moreover I barely had to revise A-level maths at all because once you can do the further maths core pure papers, 'single' maths pure is a doddle (but you will have to revise stats and mechanics!). Don't underestimate the value of helping other people with a subject - it helps you a lot too. I was unofficially tutoring quite a few people in my year; it kept me up to date with old topics.
My conditional offer excluded history so the only subjects I properly revised during study leave were further maths and physics. Still did quite a lot of work in each though.

With history if you want to save time then try to avoid rote-learning information. I found that facts and arguments stayed in my head a lot better once I'd actually used them in an essay. Also I just really enjoyed the lessons, we were in a very small class and all got on really well.
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rio.everitt
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(Original post by e^(i*pi) +;undefined)
Yeah they are completely different. Maybe try speaking to people who are studying either course to get an idea of what it’s like. Astrophysics will be very heavy on maths. If you want to go down that route, I’d strongly recommend Further Maths.
However, if you struggled to get a 7 in GCSE then Further Maths will definitely be difficult for you. I wouldn’t advise pursuing Astrophysics without Further Maths so this could be a problem for you.
Perhaps it makes more sense to go down the humanities route? Just my opinion, take it with a pinch of salt as I have no experience of history of physics at the undergraduate level.
If you DO go down the humanities route then I don’t see much benefit in taking Physics or Further Maths. You might be better off taking History and Economics for that.
If you take Chemistry then you’ll have the perfect options to go into Engineering/Physics/Maths or other STEM subjects (except for biological ones of course) but you will effectively lose the option of studying History or any humanities at uni.
I hope this helps. I really think it helps if you make a decision between humanities and STEM before you pick your A levels so you can be committed to what you want to study at uni.
I really hope to pursue with maths and physics, and from your reply I’m seriously considering further maths. It’s very difficult for me trying to grasp how difficult these subjects are going to be. I also feel quite a lot of pressure from my maths teachers to not do maths, personally I feel they just want the naturally talented, which I understand but it makes me feel out of place in the class when I don’t understand something. For that reason alone I feel I shouldn’t request doing further because that already question a level maths.
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rio.everitt
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(Original post by Sinnoh)
I did consider taking chemistry - especially back in early GCSE times when it was my favourite subject - but I wasn't that interested in the subject by the time GCSEs came around. I was a lot more reluctant to drop history than chemistry. I was alright with not going beyond GCSE for it.
The way my school taught further maths was that we learnt all of A-level maths in year 12 and then all of further maths in year 13. So in effect I wasn't ever doing more than 3 subjects at once. Moreover I barely had to revise A-level maths at all because once you can do the further maths core pure papers, 'single' maths pure is a doddle (but you will have to revise stats and mechanics!). Don't underestimate the value of helping other people with a subject - it helps you a lot too. I was unofficially tutoring quite a few people in my year; it kept me up to date with old topics.
My conditional offer excluded history so the only subjects I properly revised during study leave were further maths and physics. Still did quite a lot of work in each though.

With history if you want to save time then try to avoid rote-learning information. I found that facts and arguments stayed in my head a lot better once I'd actually used them in an essay. Also I just really enjoyed the lessons, we were in a very small class and all got on really well.
Could you notice a big jump between maths and further maths, is it more conceptually difficult or is it a larger range of topics. Also is there anything you wish you had known going into or at the start of year 12? My schools history classes are very small too which makes it a lot more engaging as we have discussions on everything we study.
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Sinnoh
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(Original post by rio.everitt)
Could you notice a big jump between maths and further maths, is it more conceptually difficult or is it a larger range of topics. Also is there anything you wish you had known going into or at the start of year 12? My schools history classes are very small too which makes it a lot more engaging as we have discussions on everything we study.
Further maths is a little more difficult conceptually bit if you're able to grasp the hardest parts of A-level maths then further maths isn't that much of a step up.

Anything I wish I'd known? not to take French AS on top of all that. My other regret is procrastinating on my history coursework.
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rio.everitt
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(Original post by Sinnoh)
Further maths is a little more difficult conceptually bit if you're able to grasp the hardest parts of A-level maths then further maths isn't that much of a step up.

Anything I wish I'd known? not to take French AS on top of all that. My other regret is procrastinating on my history coursework.
Did you spend too much time on planning?
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