The Student Room Group

4 A-levels?

I'm currently in Year 13 studying Computer Science, Economics, Further Maths and Maths at A-level. I want to go to university to study Computer Science at Cambridge (A*A*A), Durham(A*AA) or Bath(A*A*A). My grades in my end of year mocks were Computer Science A, Economics A*, Further Maths A and Maths A*. I am also studying an EPQ as it brings my backup option University of Liverpool down to ABB from AAA if I get an A in it.

I would like to drop Economics in order to allow me to have more time to revise my other 3 A-levels as I need to get another A* in either Computer Science or Further Maths, manage to put more time into my EPQ, TMUA revision, and coding courses for my personal statement. My school wants us to do 15 hours of revision if studying 3 subjects, so theoretically for me it's 20, independently a week but it's always a struggle to reach this goal. I have 5 hours free in school and work part time only on a Saturday. If I was to drop Economics I would have 10 hours free within school hours which would definitely allow me to reach 15 hours a week and have spare time for my other studies.

Is there much benefit in doing 4 A-levels? As it feels like if I was to drop Economics now it would have been a waste learning it all Year 12.
Reply 1
Original post by Pixxelz
I'm currently in Year 13 studying Computer Science, Economics, Further Maths and Maths at A-level. I want to go to university to study Computer Science at Cambridge (A*A*A), Durham(A*AA) or Bath(A*A*A). My grades in my end of year mocks were Computer Science A, Economics A*, Further Maths A and Maths A*. I am also studying an EPQ as it brings my backup option University of Liverpool down to ABB from AAA if I get an A in it.

I would like to drop Economics in order to allow me to have more time to revise my other 3 A-levels as I need to get another A* in either Computer Science or Further Maths, manage to put more time into my EPQ, TMUA revision, and coding courses for my personal statement. My school wants us to do 15 hours of revision if studying 3 subjects, so theoretically for me it's 20, independently a week but it's always a struggle to reach this goal. I have 5 hours free in school and work part time only on a Saturday. If I was to drop Economics I would have 10 hours free within school hours which would definitely allow me to reach 15 hours a week and have spare time for my other studies.

Is there much benefit in doing 4 A-levels? As it feels like if I was to drop Economics now it would have been a waste learning it all Year 12.

How about dropping EPQ? Doing 4 plus EPQ was always going to be too much. If you are getting an A* already in one of you A-levels, do you really need to drop your insurance below AAA?
Reply 2
I agree about the Epq but Cambridge are now saying only 3 Alevels are needed.I would say drop Economics.Also don't go too mad on revision targets.Schools tend to over egg it.Do what you feel is sufficient.Son disregarded his schools targets,he had too much course work anyway as he did 4 .How can you revise 20 hrs a week?Do past papers and notes but you are not revising as you won't remember stuff by next May/June.
Reply 3
You should have time to do 20 hours of study for your subjects. You have 5 hours free at school which only leaves 15 to do at home, which should be easily achievable.
Original post by Pixxelz
I'm currently in Year 13 studying Computer Science, Economics, Further Maths and Maths at A-level. I want to go to university to study Computer Science at Cambridge (A*A*A), Durham(A*AA) or Bath(A*A*A). My grades in my end of year mocks were Computer Science A, Economics A*, Further Maths A and Maths A*. I am also studying an EPQ as it brings my backup option University of Liverpool down to ABB from AAA if I get an A in it.

I would like to drop Economics in order to allow me to have more time to revise my other 3 A-levels as I need to get another A* in either Computer Science or Further Maths, manage to put more time into my EPQ, TMUA revision, and coding courses for my personal statement. My school wants us to do 15 hours of revision if studying 3 subjects, so theoretically for me it's 20, independently a week but it's always a struggle to reach this goal. I have 5 hours free in school and work part time only on a Saturday. If I was to drop Economics I would have 10 hours free within school hours which would definitely allow me to reach 15 hours a week and have spare time for my other studies.

Is there much benefit in doing 4 A-levels? As it feels like if I was to drop Economics now it would have been a waste learning it all Year 12.

If you can manage it and predicted good grades, you can stick to them, then drop Economics once you receive an offer. Some Cambridge colleges permit students to drop a subject, so it is doable.
Reply 5
Original post by Wired_1800
If you can manage it and predicted good grades, you can stick to them, then drop Economics once you receive an offer. Some Cambridge colleges permit students to drop a subject, so it is doable.

Be careful with that, as at a Cambridge open day this year, one of the college admin tutors said that they will reject all requests from offer holders to drop subjects. They said that if you want to drop a subject, you should do it before you apply, not after. I've also seen that several colleges routinely make 4 subject offers, so you would not be able to drop a subject at those either. There might be some that allow it, but I would not count on it.
Original post by lalexm
Be careful with that, as at a Cambridge open day this year, one of the college admin tutors said that they will reject all requests from offer holders to drop subjects. They said that if you want to drop a subject, you should do it before you apply, not after. I've also seen that several colleges routinely make 4 subject offers, so you would not be able to drop a subject at those either. There might be some that allow it, but I would not count on it.


That’s fair. The option was floated on another thread.
Reply 7
Original post by Wired_1800
If you can manage it and predicted good grades, you can stick to them, then drop Economics once you receive an offer. Some Cambridge colleges permit students to drop a subject, so it is doable.


No this is a dodgy tactic for Cambridge now Likely to make your offer for all 4.
Original post by Scotney
No this is a dodgy tactic for Cambridge now Likely to make your offer for all 4.

Fair
There is rarely any benefit to doing 4 A levels and it doesn’t give you any advantage in applying to top unis. Drop economics.
Reply 10
I've seen online that 61% of Cambridge students study 4 A-levels is this true? If so won't there be a disadvantage of doing 3?

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