Peter.G
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Im in year 12 right now and am looking at university courses. Im really interested in chemistry and also genetic manipulation and biotechnology. Up till now i was under the impression that to pursue a career in this area i would have to study biochemistry or biotechnology at uni (seems pretty obvious), but recently i came across medicinal chemistry. As far as ive read its about organic chemistry and drug development etc but i wanted to know whether this degree is more valuable to employers than the biochem one. Also, if i choose this degree would i then be able to do a masters in biotech?

I feel like the medicinal chemistry degree helps keep my options open a little as it encompasses alot of pure chemistry as opposed to the biochem one which is very specific to the biological aspects of chemistry.

Im just really confused at this point. Hopefully none of this will matter if i get into cambridge for natsci 😆

Any help would be appreciated!
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Sophhhowa
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Have a look at some masters courses and see what they’re requirements are. If ur still unsure try emailing unis. It could also be work looking for some taster days to see which you prefer. Try to talk to some current students.
Best if luck with Cambridge- I’m due to be starting in October (Nat sci too)
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Peter.G
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(Original post by Sophhhowa)
Have a look at some masters courses and see what they’re requirements are. If ur still unsure try emailing unis. It could also be work looking for some taster days to see which you prefer. Try to talk to some current students.
Best if luck with Cambridge- I’m due to be starting in October (Nat sci too)
Ayy congrats!! If u dont mind me asking what were ur predicted grades and what kind of extracurricular activities did u mention on ur personal statement? Also was the interview difficult? Were the questions they asked completely new to you or were they just a little harder than the A level syllabus? Also what did you get in your entrance test?

Sorry for asking so many questions lol
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Sophhhowa
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(Original post by xXThEsMarTBaNanA)
Ayy congrats!! If u dont mind me asking what were ur predicted grades and what kind of extracurricular activities did u mention on ur personal statement? Also was the interview difficult? Were the questions they asked completely new to you or were they just a little harder than the A level syllabus? Also what did you get in your entrance test?

Sorry for asking so many questions lol
Predicted 3A*s and an A. Offer AAAA. GCSEs all 9s and A*s. Have no idea wt I got in the entrance exams but I definitely messed up big time. PS I mentioned summer skls I did, relevant work experience, documentaries, reading, online courses and then at the end I had a para on extra curriculars inc 2 grade 8 LAMDA’s, gold DofE, ballet, singing on a thing for the BAFTAS, sailing. The interviews were quite different to what I expected. They kinda give you a question on a topic which is like hard a level then you really analyse the situation with them giving you a series of follow up questions. I got 2 questions per interview and there’s really no where to hide but you’ll b fine. Everyone says something stupid at some point but they aren’t that bothered. E.g I said nitrogen had 3 valance electrons but I quickly realised I was wrong and he didn’t seem to mind- ur only human after all. They understand that you’ll b nervous and ultimately they just want to see how you cope in that kind of environment. Try to keep calm lots of people think it’s gone worse than it has.
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University of Bath
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(Original post by xXThEsMarTBaNanA)
Im in year 12 right now and am looking at university courses. Im really interested in chemistry and also genetic manipulation and biotechnology. Up till now i was under the impression that to pursue a career in this area i would have to study biochemistry or biotechnology at uni (seems pretty obvious), but recently i came across medicinal chemistry. As far as ive read its about organic chemistry and drug development etc but i wanted to know whether this degree is more valuable to employers than the biochem one. Also, if i choose this degree would i then be able to do a masters in biotech?

I feel like the medicinal chemistry degree helps keep my options open a little as it encompasses alot of pure chemistry as opposed to the biochem one which is very specific to the biological aspects of chemistry.

Im just really confused at this point. Hopefully none of this will matter if i get into cambridge for natsci 😆

Any help would be appreciated!
Hi there,

I would suggest taking a look at Natural Science courses in other universities, such as Bath and Durham. Doing a NatSci course would allow you to customise your modules to suit your tastes, and maintaining a level of interdisciplinary study. At Bath in NatSci you choose a major subject and a minor subject from biology, biochemistry, physics, chemistry, pharmacology and environmental science, just like a joint honours. You then also choose an auxiliary module from intro to pharmacology and physiology, maths for life sciences, education, psychology and a few others. Hypothetically, you could study NatSci at Bath and major in chemistry, minor in biochemistry and take an optional module (perhaps pharmacology, as this involves drug development and medicine). This way you get to keep a lot of pure chemistry, whilst also getting some biochemistry (but not more than you want).

NatSci is a great degree as you can really personalise it to your tastes, and there's a lot of flexibility. By doing NatSci, you can study the modules you WANT to study, keeping them relevant to your interests, but studying them at the same depth as people on the single honours course. This way you don't pigeonhole yourself, and can keep your options open like you've said you want. It also means that you can get both the chemistry and biology sides, whereas doing just medicinal chemistry, or just biochemistry, you lose a bit of the other. You may find this thread that I started about the NatSci degree at Bath useful, as well as these 3:

- Bath VS Durham NATURAL SCIENCES
- University of Bath: pros and cons? (this is a NatSci specific thread, despite the title not saying so)
- Natural Sciences @ Bath

At Bath, we also have our long-established placement year programme, which means you could get real-world experience of working in a field you're interested in (such as in a lab, for a pharmaceutical company, or doing research). Not only do you get a full salary for most placements, but it boosts your employability and lets you get a better idea of what you want to pursue as a graduate. Let me know if you want to know more about placements, and I'll be happy to answer
I hope this helps, and please let me know if you have any more questions
Jessica, a third year NatSci student
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