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Subject choices

I'm debating on what A-levels I should pick. Some sixth forms do let you narrow it but others only say 3/4.
I'm only picking 3.

The ones I'm currently interested are
Biology
Physics
Chemistry
Maths

I'm thinking of doing smth science degree related in the future.
Appreciate some advice! :smile:

-A Yr 10
you really don't need to be picking your alevel options in year 10, but it's good that you've got a rough idea of what you want to do!

as someone who's also doing STEM (granted the T, not S) I would suggest doing Maths and two of the others if you're only going to do 3 subjects as it means that you have some transferable skills between all the science. Which of the two sciences do you like the most? or what kind of science do you want to do in the future? cause I would base your options off of that but if you aren't sure / like all the science equally then maths, biology and chemistry is probably the best option as maths is most similar to physics in terms of content from what I've heard.
Reply 2
Tysm!
i was considering bio, chem and maths due to being interested in more in those areas but i was worried but I might change my interests to physics related areas, as i like all these STEM subjects. I'm interested in research kinda of science e.g pharmaceutical stuff ig?
Original post by Trickia
I'm debating on what A-levels I should pick. Some sixth forms do let you narrow it but others only say 3/4.
I'm only picking 3.

The ones I'm currently interested are
Biology
Physics
Chemistry
Maths

I'm thinking of doing smth science degree related in the future.
Appreciate some advice! :smile:

-A Yr 10

You could start with the 4, see how you get on, then depending on what happens, either drop one after the first few weeks if its too much (most 6th forms/colleges let you swap/drop subjects in the first few weeks) or drop one of them after AS level (if the 6th form allows this).
Original post by Trickia
I'm debating on what A-levels I should pick. Some sixth forms do let you narrow it but others only say 3/4.
I'm only picking 3.

The ones I'm currently interested are
Biology
Physics
Chemistry
Maths

I'm thinking of doing smth science degree related in the future.
Appreciate some advice! :smile:

-A Yr 10

Heya!
If it helps, use this uniguide alvl checker to check what you can do with your combos :h:If you want to do something physics related then physics and maths are a way to go! If something more medicine-related, then biology and chemistry are a way to go!

I hope this helps!
Milena
UCL PFE
Study Mind
Reply 5
That's a good idea if I can't decide. I will just have to see if whether those sixth forms will allow it.
Tysm xx
Reply 6
Original post by StudyMind
Heya!
If it helps, use this uniguide alvl checker to check what you can do with your combos :h:If you want to do something physics related then physics and maths are a way to go! If something more medicine-related, then biology and chemistry are a way to go!

I hope this helps!
Milena
UCL PFE
Study Mind


Oh much appreciated thank you😊
Will use it xx
Hi!

I'm a year 13 taking maths, further maths, chem, and physics. That physics a level was nearly biology so I know your struggle!
I'm not about to give you a definite answer but I have some tips:
don't take biology unless you're also taking chem. Almost all biology degrees require chemistry a level. Bio as a subject by itself doesn't seem to open many doors, especially compared to the others you listed. However, it is very worth it if you want to do something life sciences related (I know you said you're not sure yet though). The bio/phys/maths combination would really only be helpful if you end up wanting to do biomechanical engineering or something equally niche.

I absolutely agree on taking maths. I have friends doing triple science at a level and compared to their peers that also take maths, they do struggle on the maths related questions, especially in physics. Lots of unis also look favourably on maths a level and may even require it for a stem degree (again especially for phys or even chem). Depending on which board you take maths probably also has a mechanics module which is incredibly helpful for physics in my experience. It really complements your other subjects so in my experience it would feel more like 2.5 a levels as you can already do pretty much all the calcs and graph questions in the sciences.

If you really feel you enjoy all the subjects equally, it's worth thinking about which come easiest to you. You're doing gcses now but I could definitely see a difference in learning styles by then so I think this is worth thinking about. A-Level bio (this is second hand info from my friends) is very memorisation heavy, there's lots of flashcards going on. you might end up writing mini essays and the exams ask you to demonstrate your knowledge. it has a lot of breadth - so if you only like cellular and find every other part a drag you're not going to have a fun time. on the other end of the spectrum physics is very maths heavy for a non maths course. You need to be good at conceptual understanding because memorisation really won't get you anywhere. Questions are very problem solving based and feel unfamliliar to any practice questions you did - if bio wants you to know a lot physics wants problem solving skills (when I really look at my physics course there's not that much on it, they just twist the topics weirdly to make hard questions).

in my opinion I would say maths and chemistry and then either bio or physics. however, you have ages to decide. you might decide you really like the human end of science and take biology, psychology, and sociology or you might end up with maths further maths and computing. Try to work out which subjects you enjoy learning about and find easiest to understand over the next year :smile:
Reply 8
Thank you for that insight it was very helpful. Will take what you said into consideration. Xx😊
What is further maths a level like? Is it more on pure maths or a mix of maths like a level maths?
Original post by Trickia
Thank you for that insight it was very helpful. Will take what you said into consideration. Xx😊
What is further maths a level like? Is it more on pure maths or a mix of maths like a level maths?

it really depends on the board but speaking for mine which is OCR A and seems pretty common
of four exams you have to take two pure papers so it's 50% pure. then you take two options from stats, mechanics, discrete, and additional pure. The most common combo is stats and mech and you probably take those for single maths. for my board part of pure and most of mechanics overlap pretty heavily with a level physics and because I have quite a mathsy brain relearning the topics from a maths perspective instead of the awkward 'avoid maths at all costs' way you do in physics really helped.

It is a step up but it's very enjoyable. It's only really helpful for a maths degree though, although it would give you a leg up on a physics degree (that's why I took it) and SOME unis let you take physics without physics a level if you did the further maths mechanics option, but I definitely wouldnt take it as a third and drop a second science unless you're absolutely set on a maths or physics degree which I know you aren't yet.
At my school you have the option to drop down to taking it as an AS if it's a fourth subject, so maybe look into that if you're worried about workload at sixth form?
Reply 10
Okay got it😊
Thank you for the detailed explantion

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