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Help With Picking Subjects

Hi! I am having a really tough time with picking my subjects for s3. I don’t really know what I want to be though I tend to enjoy creative things. However I feel like that would be a waste as I am fairly smart (haven’t had lower than 95% in any test so far this year and am in top maths set).
We had to do trial options the other day (these aren’t final just to give the teachers an idea of class sizes. The ones I put down are as follows;
Physics
History
Art
PE
Computing Science
(And required ones obviously like English, maths and core PE as well as re)
I’m really uncertain about these. I love sports so that’s why I picked PE but I understand that with that and art that’s two not very academic subjects so idk. I am considering changing computing science to either biology, graph comm or Spanish. Would choosing any of these lower my chances of getting into a good uni/ cut down on the amount of courses I’d be able to apply for? I’ve been told I’d be in Nat 5 classes for all.
I really hope this makes sense!!
(edited 1 year ago)
Original post by Jackowacko09
Hi! I am having a really tough time with picking my subjects for s3. I don’t really know what I want to be though I tend to enjoy creative things. However I feel like that would be a waste as I am fairly smart (haven’t had lower than 95% in any test so far this year and am in top maths set).
We had to do trial options the other day (these aren’t final just to give the teachers an idea of class sizes. The ones I put down are as follows;
Physics
History
Art
PE
Computing Science
(And required ones obviously like English, maths and core PE as well as re)
I’m really uncertain about these. I love sports so that’s why I picked PE but I understand that with that and art that’s two not very academic subjects so idk. I am considering changing computing science to either biology, graph comm or Spanish. Would choosing any of these lower my chances of getting into a good uni/ cut down on the amount of courses I’d be able to apply for? I’ve been told I’d be in Nat 5 classes for all.
I really hope this makes sense!!

Best tips for picking subjects is pick subjects you like and are good at. I would also say you should research career paths w/computing,bio etc just to see what you could rule out if you don't do them! I hope this helps:smile:
They seem a reasonable mix for NAT5. Have you any idea what you want to take to higher or what you might want to do in uni? Hopefully these are all subjects you enjoy and are good at.

Physics /maths leaves some STEM doors open to you - perhaps engineering / product design if you feel your creatively takes you in that direction.

Computing science along with physics /maths could leave doors open for IT or Web design. Programming and software development and design can be creative. The world is becoming more and more tech based. I would have loved to do computer science but our school didnt offer it.

English /history are good strong essay subjects of your columns are sending you in that direction and you enjoy history.

I did PE in S4 for NAT5 - easiest A ever, it has no exam so takes some pressure off at exam time when you have so many other harder subjects to revise and are learning how to revise for the first real time. It is also a good easy higher to have available to pick up again in a hopefully more relaxed S6. If you do it look at the SQA Understanding Standards site and read the example folios and markers commentary prior to doing each question in your folio in school. They will tell you exactly what gets marks and what loses them and you can prepare/revise what to write in advance.

Art - Subject hell for me, but if that is your thing go for it. I hear it can be very time consuming so make sure you understand what you are getting into. Good subject if you think your creatively will maybe take you into architecture where you 'll need a portfolio.

At our school, if you took two sciences you were recommended physics /chemistry or chemistry /biology as they worked better together, we were not allowed physics /biology as a mix! So maybe consider this and look at stem courses requirements if you are considering physics /biology. I did French, another easy NAT5 (and Higher), but other than another easy A at Higher if your uni course needs As it is pretty useless unless you want to do more with languages.
Original post by BlackLab
They seem a reasonable mix for NAT5. Have you any idea what you want to take to higher or what you might want to do in uni? Hopefully these are all subjects you enjoy and are good at.

Physics /maths leaves some STEM doors open to you - perhaps engineering / product design if you feel your creatively takes you in that direction.

Computing science along with physics /maths could leave doors open for IT or Web design. Programming and software development and design can be creative. The world is becoming more and more tech based. I would have loved to do computer science but our school didnt offer it.

English /history are good strong essay subjects of your columns are sending you in that direction and you enjoy history.

I did PE in S4 for NAT5 - easiest A ever, it has no exam so takes some pressure off at exam time when you have so many other harder subjects to revise and are learning how to revise for the first real time. It is also a good easy higher to have available to pick up again in a hopefully more relaxed S6. If you do it look at the SQA Understanding Standards site and read the example folios and markers commentary prior to doing each question in your folio in school. They will tell you exactly what gets marks and what loses them and you can prepare/revise what to write in advance.

Art - Subject hell for me, but if that is your thing go for it. I hear it can be very time consuming so make sure you understand what you are getting into. Good subject if you think your creatively will maybe take you into architecture where you 'll need a portfolio.

At our school, if you took two sciences you were recommended physics /chemistry or chemistry /biology as they worked better together, we were not allowed physics /biology as a mix! So maybe consider this and look at stem courses requirements if you are considering physics /biology. I did French, another easy NAT5 (and Higher), but other than another easy A at Higher if your uni course needs As it is pretty useless unless you want to do more with languages.

This is very useful thanks for putting the time into it!
I have an idea for highers,
Maths
Physics
Art
English
History
This is really subject to change depending on what I enjoy and the most likely one I’d change is history, either to Spanish, computing science or another science depending on what I pick as for most uni courses I looked at you just need good grades (aiming for 5 A‘s) and doesn’t matter what they are in.

For art I’m keen on picking it as art something I really enjoy and would say I’m quite good at. Family are also very keen on me picking art as they think I do well in it and I think I could fairly easily get an A.

In terms of science, I actually was thinking about doing physics + chemistry but my mum, dad and sister have strongly advised me not to as they think I really wouldn’t enjoy it. Tbh a main reason I’d want to do it is to look smart lol but I do enjoy what we’ve done so far though I understand Nat 5 is quite different from what we’ve been doing. (According to sister).

In terms of languages, my mum is a French and Italian teacher in another school so that’s a reason I’m influenced to do spanish (only lanuage our school offers which is really annoying) as I know if I was in need of help she has experience in learning languages. I imagine i would be able to get an A in it as I understand everything in the course pretty well so far. In terms of it kinda being useless unless wanting to do languages I do get that but I think it’d be a fairly easy A if I continued with it in higher.

There is the option of crash highers in 6th year as well, just don’t know what would be easiest to crash higher.

I just don’t know what to do with my life really so looking at unis is just confusing because I’m just like idk what to do!!! Just feeling really stressed about it in general. :s-smilie:
If you're only in S2/S3 my main advice would just be pick things you will enjoy. Nat 5s honestly don't matter much at all, all universities typically ask for is passes in English and Maths. Just do the subjects you like best (which will likely be a wide mix of things anyway). If you really are desperate for advice try a subject from each category; at least 1 science, 1 humanity, 1 more practical subject and if you enjoy them then 1 language. Honestly I can't stress enough that what you choose now will not be the defining decision for what you do with your life.

As for Highers, again just choose what you like/are good at. Depending on what you apply for universities only ever just ask for one or two specific subjects, the rest don't matter. I'm applying for English and French (did H English, French, Italian, Maths, and Computing Science, got AAAAA) and all that is specified for my courses is Higher English and French (sometimes it's just English + a humanities subject) and the fact I have two STEM subjects hasn't had any impact (received 3/5 unconditionals so far).

Please, please, please do not get yourself worked up over this. I promise it's not the end of the world whatever you choose, just do what your gut is telling you :smile:

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