The Student Room Group

A-Levels for Russel groups

Hi,
I’m thinking of doing Maths, Further Maths Physics and Classics at A-Level and was wondering if this was competitive combination for top unis. UCL, Cambridge, Edinburgh , Kings College ect. I want to go do theoretical physics or something close at uni and don’t want to limit my opportunities by picking the wrong a-levels.
Btw Chemistry A-Level is not an option it is my least fav subject at gcse. However I could consider something like economics, I just don’t love it at gcse and don’t know if I want to give up essay subjects completely.

Thank you
Reply 1
Original post by bethany_b__
Hi,
I’m thinking of doing Maths, Further Maths Physics and Classics at A-Level and was wondering if this was competitive combination for top unis. UCL, Cambridge, Edinburgh , Kings College ect. I want to go do theoretical physics or something close at uni and don’t want to limit my opportunities by picking the wrong a-levels.
Btw Chemistry A-Level is not an option it is my least fav subject at gcse. However I could consider something like economics, I just don’t love it at gcse and don’t know if I want to give up essay subjects completely.
Thank you
Maths, further maths and physics are super strong! I am unsure on what Classics is as my school do not offer this A-level. Universities like Oxford/Cambridge recommend having further maths as it is a challenge of problem solving ability compared to ordinary maths. From my stand point this is quite competitive I also recommend looking into computer science and also economics for sure before finalizing as they are both super strong choices! However it is your choice don’t base the subjects off of a university application because you will hate the next 2 years if you pick a subject that you don’t enjoy. I would also say it is wise not to pick chemistry because you’ll hate it even more at A level as it can get quite difficult with AQA’s mark scheme so you need a shed load of revision for it 😂
(edited 3 weeks ago)
Reply 2
Original post by Bethany_b__
Hi,
I’m thinking of doing Maths, Further Maths Physics and Classics at A-Level and was wondering if this was competitive combination for top unis. UCL, Cambridge, Edinburgh , Kings College ect. I want to go do theoretical physics or something close at uni and don’t want to limit my opportunities by picking the wrong a-levels.
Btw Chemistry A-Level is not an option it is my least fav subject at gcse. However I could consider something like economics, I just don’t love it at gcse and don’t know if I want to give up essay subjects completely.
Thank you

Those are great choices. Having classics is also nice as it an essay subject, so will keep those skills up also.

For Cambridge NatSci (Physical), as per their website, 89% of students have Chemistry, so most of the people around you will have a bit of an advantage for chemistry related topics in year 1, but it is not a requirement to have Chemistry, so you will be fine. For other unis, where they have straight Physics rather than NatSci, it will make no difference at all that you don't have chemistry.
Reply 3
Original post by Bethany_b__
Hi,
I’m thinking of doing Maths, Further Maths Physics and Classics at A-Level and was wondering if this was competitive combination for top unis. UCL, Cambridge, Edinburgh , Kings College ect. I want to go do theoretical physics or something close at uni and don’t want to limit my opportunities by picking the wrong a-levels.
Btw Chemistry A-Level is not an option it is my least fav subject at gcse. However I could consider something like economics, I just don’t love it at gcse and don’t know if I want to give up essay subjects completely.
Thank you

Hello! I do maths and classics in year 13 currently, and while I don't know much about how competitive your combination is, I know that classics can offer an interesting insight to the origins or maths and physics. Its not taught in the subject, but I found it really interesting in my personal statement to talk about the influence of the ancient world on maths and the sciences, with Plato, Pythagoras etc. Hope this helps!
Original post by Bethany_b__
Hi,
I’m thinking of doing Maths, Further Maths Physics and Classics at A-Level and was wondering if this was competitive combination for top unis. UCL, Cambridge, Edinburgh , Kings College ect. I want to go do theoretical physics or something close at uni and don’t want to limit my opportunities by picking the wrong a-levels.
Btw Chemistry A-Level is not an option it is my least fav subject at gcse. However I could consider something like economics, I just don’t love it at gcse and don’t know if I want to give up essay subjects completely.

Thank you

No need to do a 4th A-level, although if you have a personal interest in classics no reason not to take it. They will only be looking for maths/physics (and preferably FM), and normally will be making 3 A-level offers.

Also don't just look for courses called "theoretical physics", just look for any physics degree. As a "theoretical physics" course is just identical to any normal physics degree, except you have some optional modules preselected and may not be required to do the lab elements (however, realistically - to be a theoretical physicist you need to do a PhD, and realistically a PhD physicist needs to have experience of undergraduate labs even just so you have the opportunity to demonstrate them in your PhD for extra money. Plus theorists still need to understand experiment as ultimately the goal of theoretical physics is to formulate experimentally verifiable theories). All physics courses in the UK should in principle cover the core topics you need regardless if IoP accredited.

Note also UCL and KCL aren't as strong for physics (theoretical or otherwise) as Cambridge or even Edinburgh in that list. UCL is best known for planetary science and some related astrophysical topics in the physics regime. Not as familiar with KCL. Imperial is much stronger than either. Manchester and Southampton are also good options to consider.

Quick Reply

Latest

Trending

Trending