Which A-level option: Biology, Physics, or Geography?

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Kushi_
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I've been very indecisive about which 4 a-levels to pick and so far, I am certain on Chemistry and Maths. Although I can't decide on whether to pick biology, physics and Geography.

I'm not thinking about going into medicine, but i find biology interesting such as the things in GCSE homeostasis.
I POSSIBLY think biochemistry may be an interesting career.

I'll be honest, I'm not fond of physics out of the bunch, but I heard it gets alot more interesting. I am also POSSIBLY considering a path in chemical engineering.

And lastly, Geography is by far my favourite subject out of the bunch, and if its similar to GCSE, i am considering taking it as a 4th subject.

Any recommendations?
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isabel.b
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(Original post by Kushi_)
I've been very indecisive about which 4 a-levels to pick and so far, I am certain on Chemistry and Maths. Although I can't decide on whether to pick biology, physics and Geography.

I'm not thinking about going into medicine, but i find biology interesting such as the things in GCSE homeostasis.
I POSSIBLY think biochemistry may be an interesting career.

I'll be honest, I'm not fond of physics out of the bunch, but I heard it gets alot more interesting. I am also POSSIBLY considering a path in chemical engineering.

And lastly, Geography is by far my favourite subject out of the bunch, and if its similar to GCSE, i am considering taking it as a 4th subject.

Any recommendations?
I also have to pick my a-levels and I've picked geography as one of them for the same reasons you have and I think its a good option as a 4th and if the workload is too much, you can always drop it. Between biology and physics, you seem to be more interested in doing biology but I would look at potential degrees you want to do and check the subject requirements you need for those degrees as it could help you with your decision.
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Bluebeller
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Hi i can't be much help since i'm choosing my a-level choices as well but you said you aren't fond of physics and i have been told it is a really hard a level but if you have that passion and love for it, that will keep you going. personally i say take the subject which interests you and you love because when it gets hard, since a levels is tricky, that may help you through it. Also if you want, make a list of the pros and cons for each of the subjects and then decide because it helps you see an overview of each subject.
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Kushi_
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(Original post by isabel.b)
I also have to pick my a-levels and I've picked geography as one of them for the same reasons you have and I think its a good option as a 4th and if the workload is too much, you can always drop it. Between biology and physics, you seem to be more interested in doing biology but I would look at potential degrees you want to do and check the subject requirements you need for those degrees as it could help you with your decision.
Thanks! Its great advice although im conflicted with both degree options. One requires physics, and the other requires biology, and although I would love to take both along with my other subject, I don't think I'll be able to do all the workload.
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Kushi_
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(Original post by Bluebeller)
Hi i can't be much help since i'm choosing my a-level choices as well but you said you aren't fond of physics and i have been told it is a really hard a level but if you have that passion and love for it, that will keep you going. personally i say take the subject which interests you and you love because when it gets hard, since a levels is tricky, that may help you through it. Also if you want, make a list of the pros and cons for each of the subjects and then decide because it helps you see an overview of each subject.
Yep! I like the human side of biology but the plant based side is very much boring. I dont believe I have that much of an interest in biology to keep me going when things get tough though...
I've made a list of pros and cons and I feel that both physics and biology are of more or less equal standing...
Thank you though!
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isabel.b
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(Original post by Kushi_)
Thanks! Its great advice although im conflicted with both degree options. One requires physics, and the other requires biology, and although I would love to take both along with my other subject, I don't think I'll be able to do all the workload.
ok then thats a tough decision! Maybe do further research into the degree like different modules, career opportunities for graduates, the unis that offer it and maybe even graduate salary may be a factor? to see which one you find more interesting. you could also go on youtube and see if any student studying the degrees you are interested in has a video on it (lots of people do these types of videos). or like someone else said for the alevels, make a pros and cons list for each degree.
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McGinger
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How to Choose Sixth Form Subjects : https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/a-l...-your-subjects
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Skatie
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Hi, I'm y13 doing OCR biology, OCR geography and AQA psychology A levels, and AS maths. (I started with A level chemistry as well but dropped it)

Biology has a LOT of content, and is kind of difficult sometimes but also quite interesting.
Geography has a bit less content and is in my opinion more enjoyable.

Unless you're a grade 9 student I think 4 A levels would really compromise your grades due to the amount of content in the sciences, but if you think you're up the the challenge, good luck!! :-)
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Kushi_
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(Original post by isabel.b)
ok then thats a tough decision! Maybe do further research into the degree like different modules, career opportunities for graduates, the unis that offer it and maybe even graduate salary may be a factor? to see which one you find more interesting. you could also go on youtube and see if any student studying the degrees you are interested in has a video on it (lots of people do these types of videos). or like someone else said for the alevels, make a pros and cons list for each degree.
Thats a great idea! I'll definitely look into it!
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Kushi_
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(Original post by Skatie)
Hi, I'm y13 doing OCR biology, OCR geography and AQA psychology A levels, and AS maths. (I started with A level chemistry as well but dropped it)

Biology has a LOT of content, and is kind of difficult sometimes but also quite interesting.
Geography has a bit less content and is in my opinion more enjoyable.

Unless you're a grade 9 student I think 4 A levels would really compromise your grades due to the amount of content in the sciences, but if you think you're up the the challenge, good luck!! :-)
Thank you! If you dont mind me asking, how did you find maths and of your brief time with chemistry, how did you find that?
I can imagine the challenge of A-levels and I'm mostly taking 4 as it give me the opportunity later on to drop any of those subjects if it isn't for me. I'm currently working at a grade 8 in most of my subjects and 9 in few, and I'm willing to work hard. Also good luck to you too!!
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Skatie
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(Original post by Kushi_)
Thank you! If you dont mind me asking, how did you find maths and of your brief time with chemistry, how did you find that?
I can imagine the challenge of A-levels and I'm mostly taking 4 as it give me the opportunity later on to drop any of those subjects if it isn't for me. I'm currently working at a grade 8 in most of my subjects and 9 in few, and I'm willing to work hard. Also good luck to you too!!
Ah ok. I found chemistry really difficult tbh (I did it for the first half term), but then I didn't really like it at GCSE either, so if you're getting 8s at GCSE, you'll probably get on better than I did. I just took ages to understand everything lol.

I didn't do traditional AS maths, sorry, I did core maths which is designed to accompany economics and science.
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Emily5243
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(Original post by Kushi_)
Thanks! Its great advice although im conflicted with both degree options. One requires physics, and the other requires biology, and although I would love to take both along with my other subject, I don't think I'll be able to do all the workload.
For chemical engineering, I believe most unis will want maths and chemistry so not having physics won't affect things too much I don't think (my brother has offers for chemical engineering and he does maths, biology and chemistry A levels). You might be at a slight disadvantage by not having physics but it's not a necessity at most unis.

I did biology, maths, chemistry, and physics A levels. It's very difficult and there is a large workload, especially for biology, but if you manage your time properly and have good revision techniques, then it's definitely manageable. I don't have experience with geography A level so I don't know how the workload compares but any A level is going to be hard and doing 4 subjects is always going to be a challenge, regardless of the subjects you choose.
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bored_user:)
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Physics.
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dani_05
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(Original post by Kushi_)
I've been very indecisive about which 4 a-levels to pick and so far, I am certain on Chemistry and Maths. Although I can't decide on whether to pick biology, physics and Geography.

I'm not thinking about going into medicine, but i find biology interesting such as the things in GCSE homeostasis.
I POSSIBLY think biochemistry may be an interesting career.

I'll be honest, I'm not fond of physics out of the bunch, but I heard it gets alot more interesting. I am also POSSIBLY considering a path in chemical engineering.

And lastly, Geography is by far my favourite subject out of the bunch, and if its similar to GCSE, i am considering taking it as a 4th subject.

Any recommendations?
Hi Kushi_, I personally am in year 11 and do GCSE Geography. I was actually going to pick it for A Level as well but I am not very good at science and since physical geography is like half of the content, I didn't end up picking it. However, I assume that won't be a problem for you since you seem pretty good at science

I've heard from my Geography GCSE teacher who is also head of department and teaches OCR A Level Geography say that it is very similar to GCSE but just a step up.

I've heard that physics is very harddd so I personally wouldn't recommend it unless you have that passion and drive for it.

Ultimately, I would recommend you pick Geography. It's such an interesting and varied subject. I also heard my geography teacher say that you learn about diseases and watch coronaiton street. Hope this helps!
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Kushi_
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(Original post by Skatie)
Ah ok. I found chemistry really difficult tbh (I did it for the first half term), but then I didn't really like it at GCSE either, so if you're getting 8s at GCSE, you'll probably get on better than I did. I just took ages to understand everything lol.

I didn't do traditional AS maths, sorry, I did core maths which is designed to accompany economics and science.
Ohhh ok, thank you!
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Kushi_
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(Original post by Emily5243)
For chemical engineering, I believe most unis will want maths and chemistry so not having physics won't affect things too much I don't think (my brother has offers for chemical engineering and he does maths, biology and chemistry A levels). You might be at a slight disadvantage by not having physics but it's not a necessity at most unis.

I did biology, maths, chemistry, and physics A levels. It's very difficult and there is a large workload, especially for biology, but if you manage your time properly and have good revision techniques, then it's definitely manageable. I don't have experience with geography A level so I don't know how the workload compares but any A level is going to be hard and doing 4 subjects is always going to be a challenge, regardless of the subjects you choose.
Ohhh thats interesting! I searched up the requirements for some universities and they require physics (as this is a type of engineering). I'll definitely look into it further. How did you find physics?
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Kushi_
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(Original post by Kushi_)
Ohhh thats interesting! I searched up the requirements for some universities and they require physics (as this is a type of engineering). How did you find physics?
(Original post by dani_05)
Hi Kushi_, I personally am in year 11 and do GCSE Geography. I was actually going to pick it for A Level as well but I am not very good at science and since physical geography is like half of the content, I didn't end up picking it. However, I assume that won't be a problem for you since you seem pretty good at science

I've heard from my Geography GCSE teacher who is also head of department and teaches OCR A Level Geography say that it is very similar to GCSE but just a step up.

I've heard that physics is very harddd so I personally wouldn't recommend it unless you have that passion and drive for it.

Ultimately, I would recommend you pick Geography. It's such an interesting and varied subject. I also heard my geography teacher say that you learn about diseases and watch coronaiton street. Hope this helps!
Ooo, that seems interesting! I want to pick it as a fourth subject, as i i found the GCSE quite easy ngl lol. I've heard geography isn't as difficult as the other A-levels so it MIGHT be manageable as a fourth. Thank you for your input!
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Emily5243
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(Original post by Kushi_)
Ohhh thats interesting! I searched up the requirements for some universities and they require physics (as this is a type of engineering). I'll definitely look into it further. How did you find physics?
Yeah I've seen a few unis that need physics for chemical engineering (can't remember which ones) but most of them will be happy with maths and chemistry.

I found physics really enjoyable - definitely more interesting at A level compared to GCSE. I would say I found it the hardest out of all my subjects and I needed to put in a lot of work but I'm glad I chose it.
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Kushi_
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(Original post by Emily5243)
Yeah I've seen a few unis that need physics for chemical engineering (can't remember which ones) but most of them will be happy with maths and chemistry.

I found physics really enjoyable - definitely more interesting at A level compared to GCSE. I would say I found it the hardest out of all my subjects and I needed to put in a lot of work but I'm glad I chose it.
Honestly, you must be very clever to do 4 A-levels, and those A-levels being the science ones! I would appreciate a challenge ngl, but I don't think I'll be able to.
Also, I'm sorry If it feels like I'm asking too many questions and I won't ask anymore- but, what would you say is the most enjoyable part of each subject? And any last things to say about the subjects?
Good luck to you! You've been very helpful!
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Emily5243
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(Original post by Kushi_)
Honestly, you must be very clever to do 4 A-levels, and those A-levels being the science ones! I would appreciate a challenge ngl, but I don't think I'll be able to.
Also, I'm sorry If it feels like I'm asking too many questions and I won't ask anymore- but, what would you say is the most enjoyable part of each subject? And any last things to say about the subjects?
Good luck to you! You've been very helpful!
You're not asking too many questions - I'm happy to be able to help!
My school encouraged people to do 4 subjects to begin with to allow some flexibility to drop a subject if it wasn't as enjoyable as you thought it was going to be. My initial intention was not to end up with 4 A levels but as I went through year 12, I found myself really enjoying all of my subjects and I could keep on top of everything whilst still doing well in mocks so I decided to carry on doing all 4.
A really enjoyable part of the subjects is when you finally understand something you were struggling to understand and you feel things coming together - this was especially true of chemistry, physics and maths as these all require lots of understanding.
For biology, the human part of biology was by far my favourite as you are getting to understand more about how our bodies work which I really enjoy (that's one of the reasons I decided to study medicine).
For chemistry, the transition metals part was enjoyable - maybe that was just because of all the colours we could make with reactions that include transition metals when we did the practical component for that topic
In physics, the astronomy part of it was my favourite topic - I found it really interesting to learn about our universe and how it might have come to be and all of the things that happen in space.
In maths, I quite liked the mechanics section as it had a bit of overlap with mechanics in physics so it didn't feel too challenging. I think maths is just a lot of problem solving which I always enjoy so I feel like there weren't many stand out topics for me.
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