A Level guidance from GCSE

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Seb6538
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#1
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#1
Avoid STEM and hard a levels unless you need them and can get at least a B in them!
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replaythat
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#2
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#2
(Original post by Seb6538)
Avoid STEM and hard a levels unless you need them and can get at least a B in them!
at least one science/STEM should be encouraged if able- to help keep people options open (some people change their mind about what they want to do but sometimes don't have the required a-levels to pursue what they would like to do) - but I only partly agree. Some people pick stem subjects and cannot achieve the required grades for progression onwards and inevitably are disadvantaged. That being said, resits are an option, but not ideal.
Last edited by replaythat; 4 weeks ago
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Seb6538
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#3
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#3
(Original post by Seb6538)
Avoid STEM and hard a levels unless you need them and can get at least a B in them!
Decent universities will usually ask for minimum AAB or ABB and some have subject requirements (typically harder courses or at top unis) most universities do not care much about personal statements (unless they are terrible or ofc you're applying to a top uni) and subjects don't matter that much unless a top uni or stem is required (non academic courses may be frowned upon)
EPQ = gigantic waste of time heavily wouldn't advise doing it

A level maths, chemistry, physics and obviously further maths wouldn't recommend touching them unless you get at least an 8 at GCSE for physics id recommend and 8 in maths as well otherwise you will seriously struggle and have to work extremely hard.
For most good universities a B is a safe grade for entry requirements but what I've found is that the level 7 students especially struggle the most after being tricked into doing A level maths. Let me make this clear if you are a low 7 at GCSE do NOT take a level maths unless you are seriously ready to work your ass off! Students who get these grades tend to max out at around a C and may creep into a B if lucky which drags them back which will be hard to get into universities with when they would be easily capable of getting an A/B in an easier subject. In worst cases I've seen D grades and below from level 7 maths students at GCSE even a U. Do not take a STEM subject unless you require it for your chosen uni course and believe you can realistically achieve these grades.

Business - boring, easy, literally GCSE 2.0 if you got a 7+ at GCSE you will be almost guaranteed a B+ teachers usually aren't that good tho so if you didn't do the GCSE you may struggle to catch up at the start and are at a heavy disadvantage, however none of the topics are very complicated. The maths in it isn't hard a grade 5+ will be fine a 6+ and you will find all the maths easy.

Economics - literally the better business, taking this subject makes business easy and you will literally be able to answer questions beyond what you even need to know (would not recommend drawing economics graphs in a business test they won't have a clue what you're trying to say) teachers are good but has some complex theories a 7+ in business and a 6+ in maths and you should be able to secure at least a B.

Geography - links to econ and business a bit with globalisation, just GCSE with more theory, honestly the subject is easy and requires minimal thinking if you can remember case studies and basic theory you will do fine. Heavily recommend for an easy 3rd subject that unis like anyone with a 5/6+ in GCSE could easily get a B+ if they revise well enough and learn all the case studies. Teachings decent can be a bit boring but worth it for an easy grade.

History/ancient - don't know enough didn't take it at GCSE as the topics were boring guessing there is a lot of essays and case studies I mean if you like it do it but I would recommend geography over as it is less essays and easier.

Natural science - just do biology.

Computer science - if you're good at it do it but I've heard there's quite a lot of maths so idk if its worth the difficulty

Politics/law - lots of writing not as fun as they sound

Sociology/psychology/criminology - full of fit birds tbf not my cup of tee and I would not recommend stacking up on multiple of these subjects as they may be viewed as inferior by top unis
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Admit-One
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#4
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#4
Unis don’t have a secret list of subjects which they view as inferior.

Your comments might have held more weight without the “fit birds” comment, but here we are.
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replaythat
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#5
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#5
this is actually very bad. Firstly EPQ is not a waste of time, you might see it as one but it's certainly not. The EPQ prepares you for university based assignments more specifically referencing (but nowadays its much easier). At university, your essays have to contain balanced but critical arguments and the EPQ is perfect for this. Furthermore, if achieved a good grade it lowers your university offer. Secondly, GCSE progression does not determine a-level progression. Ultimately, it is down to your own hard work and discipline. There are plenty of people who achieve 8s and 9s at GCSE in that subject yet fail to achieve the top grades at A-level and plenty of people who achieve 6s and 7s who go on to achieve a top grade. The most important thing to do when picking A-levels is pick what you enjoy, not based on what's easy and what's hard. To suggest picking certain subjects due to their "perceived" simplicity is wholly misleading. At the end of day, all exams are hard and stressful regardless of how easy or hard the content is.

Seems like your going through an a-level crisis to put it quite simply.

(Original post by Seb6538)
Decent universities will usually ask for minimum AAB or ABB and some have subject requirements (typically harder courses or at top unis) most universities do not care much about personal statements (unless they are terrible or ofc you're applying to a top uni) and subjects don't matter that much unless a top uni or stem is required (non academic courses may be frowned upon)
EPQ = gigantic waste of time heavily wouldn't advise doing it

A level maths, chemistry, physics and obviously further maths wouldn't recommend touching them unless you get at least an 8 at GCSE for physics id recommend and 8 in maths as well otherwise you will seriously struggle and have to work extremely hard.
For most good universities a B is a safe grade for entry requirements but what I've found is that the level 7 students especially struggle the most after being tricked into doing A level maths. Let me make this clear if you are a low 7 at GCSE do NOT take a level maths unless you are seriously ready to work your ass off! Students who get these grades tend to max out at around a C and may creep into a B if lucky which drags them back which will be hard to get into universities with when they would be easily capable of getting an A/B in an easier subject. In worst cases I've seen D grades and below from level 7 maths students at GCSE even a U. Do not take a STEM subject unless you require it for your chosen uni course and believe you can realistically achieve these grades.

Business - boring, easy, literally GCSE 2.0 if you got a 7+ at GCSE you will be almost guaranteed a B+ teachers usually aren't that good tho so if you didn't do the GCSE you may struggle to catch up at the start and are at a heavy disadvantage, however none of the topics are very complicated. The maths in it isn't hard a grade 5+ will be fine a 6+ and you will find all the maths easy.

Economics - literally the better business, taking this subject makes business easy and you will literally be able to answer questions beyond what you even need to know (would not recommend drawing economics graphs in a business test they won't have a clue what you're trying to say) teachers are good but has some complex theories a 7+ in business and a 6+ in maths and you should be able to secure at least a B.

Geography - links to econ and business a bit with globalisation, just GCSE with more theory, honestly the subject is easy and requires minimal thinking if you can remember case studies and basic theory you will do fine. Heavily recommend for an easy 3rd subject that unis like anyone with a 5/6+ in GCSE could easily get a B+ if they revise well enough and learn all the case studies. Teachings decent can be a bit boring but worth it for an easy grade.

History/ancient - don't know enough didn't take it at GCSE as the topics were boring guessing there is a lot of essays and case studies I mean if you like it do it but I would recommend geography over as it is less essays and easier.

Natural science - just do biology.

Computer science - if you're good at it do it but I've heard there's quite a lot of maths so idk if its worth the difficulty

Politics/law - lots of writing not as fun as they sound

Sociology/psychology/criminology - full of fit birds tbf not my cup of tee and I would not recommend stacking up on multiple of these subjects as they may be viewed as inferior by top unis
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Seb6538
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#6
Report Thread starter 4 weeks ago
#6
(Original post by replaythat)
this is actually very bad. Firstly EPQ is not a waste of time, you might see it as one but it's certainly not. The EPQ prepares you for university based assignments more specifically referencing (but nowadays its much easier). At university, your essays have to contain balanced but critical arguments and the EPQ is perfect for this. Furthermore, if achieved a good grade it lowers your university offer. Secondly, GCSE progression does not determine a-level progression. Ultimately, it is down to your own hard work and discipline. There are plenty of people who achieve 8s and 9s at GCSE in that subject yet fail to achieve the top grades at A-level and plenty of people who achieve 6s and 7s who go on to achieve a top grade. The most important thing to do when picking A-levels is pick what you enjoy, not based on what's easy and what's hard. To suggest picking certain subjects due to their "perceived" simplicity is wholly misleading. At the end of day, all exams are hard and stressful regardless of how easy or hard the content is.

Seems like your going through an a-level crisis to put it quite simply.
No one who did an epq recommended it at all or got their grades dropped like they were told. I got 6/7 and did fine you simply have to work I have had no stress and have been getting top grades. Any grades possible if you try hard enough but enjoying college and taking people who take less intense subjects have had a much better time. Obviously a levels such as economics will be perceived higher than business studies as the subject is far harder so no picking subjects on the way they are perceived is not misleading or everyone would choose the absolute easiest a levels and yes sone are easier than others.
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Seb6538
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#7
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#7
(Original post by Admit-One)
Unis don’t have a secret list of subjects which they view as inferior.

Your comments might have held more weight without the “fit birds” comment, but here we are.
an A in A level maths ain’t exactly gonna be viewed the same as an A in A level business is it so there is no secret list but it’s common sense
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Admit-One
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#8
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#8
(Original post by Seb6538)
an A in A level maths ain’t exactly gonna be viewed the same as an A in A level business is it so there is no secret list but it’s common sense
It's viewed exactly the same.

You can't just hand wave this stuff by saying "it's common sense". I've worked in admissions for years and everyone who has he same experience will tell you the same, subjects are either Essential, Preferred or Everything Else.

Unis don't use secret lists of subjects.
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