Cambridge natural science a level subject preferences.

Badges: 6
Report Thread starter 2 months ago
Hi! I'm a year 11 aiming to go to Cambridge for natural sciences (as the title suggests). Originally, it was the biological side of the course that interested me, but as the year has gone on, my self-studies of maths, chemistry and physics a-levels have made me more interested in the physical side. I haven't done any work on a level bio yet, and so I'm mainly gravitating towards doing the physical side.

From what I can see from the Cambridge course outline, for the actual physics section of the course, either physics and maths is required, or double maths. I also spoke to a teacher today who taught parts of the natural sciences course (biological, although he is also experienced in the physical side) and he said that double maths is basically essential for physics.

Could anyone with experience with the course (or similar courses) give their opinions on the usefulness of double maths vs 3 sciences and single maths for this specific course?

For some extra background info, in the past month or so I've self-taught around 1/2 of AS pure maths (and have been able to complete exam-style questions on the topics I have covered) and the first 1 and a half of the chemistry AS course (OCR), also completing exam q's. I'm unable to say exactly what maths grade I will get on results day, but it will almost certainly be an 8/9 as I got 75/80, 79/80 and 80/80 on my 3 final papers.

I'm mainly just unsure about dropping biology completely, but it seems from the course outline that it isn't even biology that is "essential" for the biology of cells/physiology (which are the sections that sound the most interesting).

Sorry for the somewhat long post, and thank you for any opinions

Edit- Also, as I am taking an EPQ next year, would a coding based one be a good idea? I've heard that the program "Matlab" is used quite frequently in the course, and as I haven't done computer science I feel like it could be good prep-work and also be somewhat different to my current subjects.

(And I am also aware that Cambridge isn't the most realistic course to base my entire choices around, but hopefully whichever subjects I pick will set me up for a lot of degrees as they are considered facilitating.)
Last edited by Ephimar; 2 months ago
Badges: 21
Report 2 months ago
Seeing as Biology isn't necessary for a few of the options, whereas Physics and especially Chemistry are, doing Chem, Physics and double maths will be fine. Not doing biology doesn't mean you can't do it if you get a place and having FM if you do end up on the physics side will make you more competitive (as it will if you look at Chemistry or Physics at Oxford).
Badges: 14
Report 2 months ago
if you don't end up doing biology you could maybe do your epq on a biological topic so when you apply they will see you have an interest in that

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