The Student Room Group

Regretting degree choice

I was planning to do maths in y12 but then I changed to classics as I didn’t get best predicteds and I also didn’t enjoy it at that time. Now I’ve applied and gotten 3 offers and have an interview at Oxford next week but I’m panicking. I feel like I made the wrong choice.
Reply 1
Normal.

So is everyone else.
Reply 2
Original post by McGinger
Normal.

So is everyone else.

Nobody I know regrets their choice(s).
Original post by Fineriie
I was planning to do maths in y12 but then I changed to classics as I didn’t get best predicteds and I also didn’t enjoy it at that time. Now I’ve applied and gotten 3 offers and have an interview at Oxford next week but I’m panicking. I feel like I made the wrong choice.


What is your reservation with this course?
Reply 4
Current Classics student here - obviously, people do change their minds, and you could try to get places in clearing or next year, but you can also have reservations about a course while applying and still enjoy it once you get there. It's hard for us to advise you without more info - but do let me know if I can answer any questions about classics
Reply 5
Original post by artful_lounger
What is your reservation with this course?

I will miss maths immensely and honestly don’t see myself being happy if it isn’t in my life
Reply 6
Original post by Phz phahsb
I will miss maths immensely and honestly don’t see myself being happy if it isn’t in my life

If you’re really going to be unhappy, don’t dosssics for 3/4 years. Speak to your UCAS advisor if you have one about options for changing options, applying through clearing, a gap year etc.
Reply 7
Original post by elilast
If you’re really going to be unhappy, don’t dosssics for 3/4 years. Speak to your UCAS advisor if you have one about options for changing options, applying through clearing, a gap year etc.

Okay thank you. This has all been so stressful so I’m worried she will be mad at me because this is originally what I wanted to do and switching back then was a whole thing but at least then I hadn’t actually applied yet.
Original post by Phz phahsb
I will miss maths immensely and honestly don’t see myself being happy if it isn’t in my life


Well, what part of maths specifically? As, having done maths (at and beyond 6th form standard) and now focusing on ancient languages, there are certainly some not dissimilar experiences. The abstract reasoning, pattern recognition, and problem solving elements are all very much present (especially if you focus on linguistic/philological angles) for example. So something to bear in mind. I gather it's not actually that uncommon for people interested in maths and similar to be interested in studying ancient languages as there are those parallels in methods of thinking and approaching issues in both.

Obviously though, if you absolutely couldn't bear to stop doing maths then, that is a major consideration. Although equally consider - the maths you do in a maths degree is so different to A-level Maths that you're not really "doing more maths" in that style by doing a maths degree for the most part. If you want to continue with maths in the manner you've studied it in A-level then a physics or engineering degree would be much more aligned with your expectations.
Reply 9
First off, congrats on snagging those offers! Oxford interview nerves are totally normal. Just remember, it's okay to change your mind. If Classics is what you're passionate about now, go for it.
Original post by artful_lounger
Well, what part of maths specifically? As, having done maths (at and beyond 6th form standard) and now focusing on ancient languages, there are certainly some not dissimilar experiences. The abstract reasoning, pattern recognition, and problem solving elements are all very much present (especially if you focus on linguistic/philological angles) for example. So something to bear in mind. I gather it's not actually that uncommon for people interested in maths and similar to be interested in studying ancient languages as there are those parallels in methods of thinking and approaching issues in both.

Obviously though, if you absolutely couldn't bear to stop doing maths then, that is a major consideration. Although equally consider - the maths you do in a maths degree is so different to A-level Maths that you're not really "doing more maths" in that style by doing a maths degree for the most part. If you want to continue with maths in the manner you've studied it in A-level then a physics or engineering degree would be much more aligned with your expectations.

I absolutely love calculus, I also like applied mathematics and I would like to maybe work in finance as an adult. Ik that doesn’t require maths but I think it would give me a better chance yk?
Original post by Phz phahsb
I absolutely love calculus, I also like applied mathematics and I would like to maybe work in finance as an adult. Ik that doesn’t require maths but I think it would give me a better chance yk?

lol i was in exactly the same situation as u but between phys/ engineering and classics. unfortunately my ego and desire to go to oxbridge prevailed and i went for classics. in agony of indecision and regret in y12,13, y1,2 of uni but got a first and then suddenly didn't mind classics. the maths/ phys vs classics dilemma is weirdly common
Original post by steamedclams
lol i was in exactly the same situation as u but between phys/ engineering and classics. unfortunately my ego and desire to go to oxbridge prevailed and i went for classics. in agony of indecision and regret in y12,13, y1,2 of uni but got a first and then suddenly didn't mind classics. the maths/ phys vs classics dilemma is weirdly common

That’s so interesting although as u said it does make sense. Arguments and logic, plus the philosophy aspect that can be found in mathematical sciences. Thank u for ur insight, it has helped me understand and feel less alone
Original post by Phz phahsb
I absolutely love calculus, I also like applied mathematics and I would like to maybe work in finance as an adult. Ik that doesn’t require maths but I think it would give me a better chance yk?

Honestly for those areas you'd actually find a degree in physics or engineering much closer to your interests than a degree in maths. Even the applied maths topics in a maths degree are necessarily very abstract and involve proofs. The pure maths content in a maths degree is wholly proof based more or less.

The kind of maths you describe that you like at A-level are normally referred to as "mathematical methods" in the context of degree programmes and are focused on much more in mathematical but not maths degrees as noted above.

Also doing a maths degree isn't going to give you any better chance of working in finance unless you want to go into quant finance in which case you need a PhD anyway. For stuff like investment banking they literally don't care what degree you did.

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