The Student Room Group

Which combination of A-Levels is better for a possible law or medicine degree ?

Maths government and politics Spanish biology
English lit Spanish biology chemistry
Maths chemistry biology Spanish
Unfortunately I am not able to take Spanish English lit and maths as there were subject clashes so I had to improvise and I am very very interested in the law with Spanish course at KCL. I am generally stronger in maths than English lit but I was able to get 9’s both and I have heard that English lit will probably benefit me more for law. Also if I decided to do government and politics is this still good enough as an essay based subject for a high end university. Your also probably wondering where the science subjects have came from and the reason for those are I’m actually stuck between law and medicine for career paths and after lots of research I saw that maybe my second combination would keep both my possible pathways open. I will need to do some work experience to fully find out.
So sorry this is so confusing I apologize
personally, I'd go for the second option
Biology, chemistry, and whatever single subject for your third. There is no benefit or point in doing four A-levels and it may in fact make it harder for you if you aren't able to get the grades needed in just three subjects due to being spread out too much with the fourth.

Law degrees have no required subjects and happily admit applicants with all STEM subjects as those with others. Medical schools have somewhat varying requirements but by taking both biology and chemistry you give yourself the possibility of every medical school except Cambridge (who require a third STEM subject as well). No medical schools other than Cambridge care what your third A-level is in.
Original post by artful_lounger
Biology, chemistry, and whatever single subject for your third. There is no benefit or point in doing four A-levels and it may in fact make it harder for you if you aren't able to get the grades needed in just three subjects due to being spread out too much with the fourth.

Law degrees have no required subjects and happily admit applicants with all STEM subjects as those with others. Medical schools have somewhat varying requirements but by taking both biology and chemistry you give yourself the possibility of every medical school except Cambridge (who require a third STEM subject as well). No medical schools other than Cambridge care what your third A-level is in.


in response to this I want to say a fourth a level is not required but if u think u can do it then go ahead. I'd advise u to only do 4 if it's because u really enjoy the fourth subject so much u would cry if u had to let it go or something along the lines of that (as I did lol)
Original post by greensmith
in response to this I want to say a fourth a level is not required but if u think u can do it then go ahead. I'd advise u to only do 4 if it's because u really enjoy the fourth subject so much u would cry if u had to let it go or something along the lines of that (as I did lol)


While I can appreciate the sentiment, for medicine at least I'm not sure it's really the best advice. The difference between doing three vs four A-levels can make a difference in grades, if you don't have the ability to put in the full effort needed to all your subjects. And A*AA will meet the standard entry criteria of most medical schools, while A*ABB will not. At the end of the day for medicine you need to give yourself every benefit you can, and sometimes that means not overexerting yourself so as to ensure you can do as well as possible in exactly what is needed, and not beyond (which counts for nothing).

If there's a fourth subject genuinely of intellectual interest but that is not required for whatever you want to do, it is just as valid to pursue that in an extracurricular fashion in your own time - and that may well actually be better as it allows you to pursue your interests specifically, rather than being constrained by the A-level syllabus!
(edited 1 year ago)
Decide on which career you actually want - Medicine is not a degree or career to be decided upon in an absent minded way.
Original post by artful_lounger
While I can appreciate the sentiment, for medicine at least I'm not sure it's really the best advice. The difference between doing three vs four A-levels can make a difference in grades, if you don't have the ability to put in the full effort needed to all your subjects. And A*AA will meet the standard entry criteria of most medical schools, while A*ABB will not. At the end of the day for medicine you need to give yourself every benefit you can, and sometimes that means not overexerting yourself so as to ensure you can do as well as possible in exactly what is needed, and not beyond (which counts for nothing).

If there's a fourth subject genuinely of intellectual interest but that is not required for whatever you want to do, it is just as valid to pursue that in an extracurricular fashion in your own time - and that may well actually be better as it allows you to pursue your interests specifically, rather than being constrained by the A-level syllabus!


yeah that's why I said if u think u can do it. I know someone who has 4 A*s so it depends on the person. At the end of the day, u know urself best so if u think u can handle 4 a levels then go for it. But if ur unsure or whatever then 3 is perfectly fine and it's what most people do anyway. Remember if u do 4 u can always drop one at any point along the way if it's getting too much :smile:
Original post by artful_lounger
Biology, chemistry, and whatever single subject for your third. There is no benefit or point in doing four A-levels and it may in fact make it harder for you if you aren't able to get the grades needed in just three subjects due to being spread out too much with the fourth.

Law degrees have no required subjects and happily admit applicants with all STEM subjects as those with others. Medical schools have somewhat varying requirements but by taking both biology and chemistry you give yourself the possibility of every medical school except Cambridge (who require a third STEM subject as well). No medical schools other than Cambridge care what your third A-level is in.

Thank you for this as u was worried that my lack of essay subjects could possibly hinder a possible application to a law degree so this is very reassuring
Original post by artful_lounger
While I can appreciate the sentiment, for medicine at least I'm not sure it's really the best advice. The difference between doing three vs four A-levels can make a difference in grades, if you don't have the ability to put in the full effort needed to all your subjects. And A*AA will meet the standard entry criteria of most medical schools, while A*ABB will not. At the end of the day for medicine you need to give yourself every benefit you can, and sometimes that means not overexerting yourself so as to ensure you can do as well as possible in exactly what is needed, and not beyond (which counts for nothing).

If there's a fourth subject genuinely of intellectual interest but that is not required for whatever you want to do, it is just as valid to pursue that in an extracurricular fashion in your own time - and that may well actually be better as it allows you to pursue your interests specifically, rather than being constrained by the A-level syllabus!

At my school we have to initially take 4 and decide by Christmas which one we want to do an AS in
Original post by greensmith
yeah that's why I said if u think u can do it. I know someone who has 4 A*s so it depends on the person. At the end of the day, u know urself best so if u think u can handle 4 a levels then go for it. But if ur unsure or whatever then 3 is perfectly fine and it's what most people do anyway. Remember if u do 4 u can always drop one at any point along the way if it's getting too much :smile:

Thank you so much for this advice I am definitely going to try my best to do 4 and like you said I will drop one if it becomes too much
Original post by McGinger
Decide on which career you actually want - Medicine is not a degree or career to be decided upon in an absent minded way.


Easier said than done I just feel like because medicine has harsher requirements I should pick the alevels that keep that option open
Original post by greensmith
personally, I'd go for the second

In the end I went for the third option would you say that could hinder a possible application to a law degree
Original post by AliMousavi05
In the end I went for the third option would you say that could hinder a possible application to a law degree

No, it's fine for either. Law degrees take students with any combination of A-levels, including all STEM subjects.
Original post by AliMousavi05
Maths government and politics Spanish biology
English lit Spanish biology chemistry
Maths chemistry biology Spanish
Unfortunately I am not able to take Spanish English lit and maths as there were subject clashes so I had to improvise and I am very very interested in the law with Spanish course at KCL. I am generally stronger in maths than English lit but I was able to get 9’s both and I have heard that English lit will probably benefit me more for law. Also if I decided to do government and politics is this still good enough as an essay based subject for a high end university. Your also probably wondering where the science subjects have came from and the reason for those are I’m actually stuck between law and medicine for career paths and after lots of research I saw that maybe my second combination would keep both my possible pathways open. I will need to do some work experience to fully find out.
So sorry this is so confusing I apologize

Heya!
For law, you don't really need any specific a-levels, just good grades. For medicine, taking bio and chem (and maths or physics, if you are aiming for top unis though not necessary and 3rd subject, is usually optional) is recommended though it varies between medical schools. For both degrees you need high marks, so please be careful with selecting 4 a-levels as it'll require a lot of extra work and A*A*A* looks better than A*A*BB. If you want to develop your essay skills then you could take something as extracurricular / or if you want to learn Spanish that could be extracurricular as well. You can then mention them in your PS. However, it's up to you!

I hope this helps.
MIlena G.
UCL PFE
Study Mind
Original post by StudyMind
Heya!
For law, you don't really need any specific a-levels, just good grades. For medicine, taking bio and chem (and maths or physics, if you are aiming for top unis though not necessary and 3rd subject, is usually optional) is recommended though it varies between medical schools. For both degrees you need high marks, so please be careful with selecting 4 a-levels as it'll require a lot of extra work and A*A*A* looks better than A*A*BB. If you want to develop your essay skills then you could take something as extracurricular / or if you want to learn Spanish that could be extracurricular as well. You can then mention them in your PS. However, it's up to you!

I hope this helps.
MIlena G.
UCL PFE
Study Mind


So if I applied to law with biology maths and Spanish would that be ok or would I be better off doing politics maths and Spanish
Original post by AliMousavi05
So if I applied to law with biology maths and Spanish would that be ok or would I be better off doing politics maths and Spanish

Heya!
That should be fine if you choose to do law, as long as you enjoy the subjects you picked (either option should be fine) :smile: If you like and want to do biology then do biology. If you think you can learn and enjoy politics more, then pick politics. Have you tried taster sessions for both?

However, be careful if you want to apply for medicine, check the entry requirements for uni you want to go in. For example, UCL medicine requires Biology and chemistry a-level. However, that's not always the case with every medical application, just double-check!

I hope this helps!
Milena G.
UCL PFE
Study Mind
Original post by AliMousavi05
In the end I went for the third option would you say that could hinder a possible application to a law degree


nah I was just biased because I did eng lit and loved it

Quick Reply

Latest