Need A-level advice! HELP!!(32 Posts)
I know this is a site for mums mainly but I find mums often give the best advice . I'm starting my A-levels in September but I am not certain what to chose. I'll definitely do English Lit and Psychology but need one more subject. Any recommendations? I'd like something that offers some variation but isn't too difficult all advice is highly appreciated
Think about the type of job you might like to do or sector you'd like to go into. I chose my a levels based on my interests though so I also think that's really important. I loved sociology. I'd recommend that or politics or philosophy or something which engages critical thinking. It is so important for lots of uni courses and jobs. Not to mention a vital life skill.
While you are in the middle of them, GCSEs and A Levels feel very important but really they are only stepping stones to something else. Try to think about what you would like to do after sixth form and that may help make your choice for you. For example, if you wanted to do something medical at University then Chemistry A Level is essential. Look ahead and see what qualifications/skillsets are specified by your proposed career or academic choices.
Any recommendations? I'd like something that offers some variation but isn't too difficult.
Rather than think generically, think specifically.Look at your own school/college's past results. Are there subjects that always seem to get decent grades because the teachers are good? See if that list inspires you.
I would say that History may be a good fit for you but do be careful. It won't necessarily be more-of-the-same, leading on from GCSE. Have a close look at the syllabus.
Think about what you enjoy and what you'd love to study at uni (if you decided to go) also looking at your strongest graded subjects is a good plan.
You could do another humanities subject like history? Alternatively I did English lit and media and they went together well. There was a lot of crossover when it came to analysing books/media.
The college will also have ideas so speak to them. They are used to helping people make this choice.
If you think you’d like to go to uni then maybe another ‘facilitating subject’ that is a subject the unis like to see as it shows the depth with which you can understand, history or geography perhaps. But yes, look to the future and work back, job, degree, a levels... good luck!
Are you planning on going to uni and if so have you looked at some prospectus to see if any courses catch your eye? Then you may be able to work backwards and see what a level would be good for that course?
If not think about your GCSEs, which are you predicted good grades for and enjoy?
Have a look at the syllabus for any a-levels you’re considering to ensure the topics/texts which you will study will interest you.
Think about whether you want another essay based a level or a non
essay based one?
Seeing as you’re already doing psychology I would steer away from anything like sociology as they’re considered too similar.....unless you’re looking at a sociology degree, etc.
The main academic subjects like MFL, geography, history, English, maths, science are facilitating subjects and open more doors to more degrees.
Thanks for all your suggestions. I did History, Drama, Spanish and Triple Science at GCSE and am predicted an 8 in all of them (whether I get that is another issue ). Honestly I didn't really enjoy any of the subjects, but I particularly don't want to continue with Drama, Spanish or Physics. I considered Biology as I thought it would compliment my options well but I'm not certain I'll reach the entry requirements. I'm not sure what course I'd like to pursue in the future, but I've always thought of Law as an option for me.
I think history would be more useful than biology for a level. Although if you really wanted to do biology if you do that and English I'd have thought most law degrees would be happy enough as you'd have an essay based a level with English.
I've always thought of Law as an option for me.
You and everybody else. Roughly 25,000 apply to study Law at University, only 18,000 get accepted. Training Contracts are only given to about 5,500. source
Sure, someone's going to be picked and it might be you but the odds are against. I know many people who have been employed by solicitors to do grunt work with the indication that there might be a TC next year. Or the year after. It's usually a mirage and after a few years they go and do something else.
Sorry to trample on your dreams.
Religious Studies. Find out what board your school do and look carefully.
If you need help give me a shout... I am a head of RE and Philosophy and happy to give guidance.
Also you shouldn't need to have the GCSE, but I can suggest some books that will help.
If you’re not sure what to study, have a look at the Russell Group list of facilitating subjects. To keep open your options (& being predicted level 8s suggests you have great academic potential), then look at taking 2 facilitating subjects at A level, I think both History and Philosophy would count along with English.
I would say History based on what you are doing already, what you have already done and it is a facilitating subject. Also a good one if you wish to pursue law. Indeed I'd go as far as saying do a History degree then the law conversion or the new SQE
As a clinical scientist with a dd who just finished her A levels including biology, a vote for biology.
A) you have an interest in it
B) it’s a contrast to your other subjects
C) there is a shortage of people qualified in it
D) lots of jobs including with on the job training
E) it’s a really interesting A level course
Also it’s often possible to choose late or change your mind, Dd told me. So don’t be too hasty
For what it's worth, DS really wants to do psychology so has picked biology as a good fit with it.
Do something that will give you a skill rather than a knowledge based course.
A science is a good one
I know someone who did English literature, psychology & biology & it was a good combination that kept options open (biology is a really hard A level, though). You can out all the various combinations into the UCAS website & it will tell you what courses you could do.
If you add Biology, that’s good for a Psychology degree or Maths. History is good for Law. As training contracts are difficult to come by (the numbers above are correct and barristers pupillages are around 450 pa) you need to be flexible regarding a career if you go down this route or go to the best university possible. Also get the best result possible. That’s vital! Ditto with Psychology.
Look at what else you enjoy but remember some careers are a lot more difficult to get into then others. Aim high but be realistic.
I'm a Psychology teacher and if you might want to do Psychology at Uni biology or maths would be the best fit.
I like someone who recognises that moms know best. You’ll go far
Have you thought about Politics?
I agree that Psychology and Biology complement each other well. Are you only allowed to choose 3 A-Levels? If not, how about trying a fourth choice (in which case, History would be a good choice) and you can always drop it at the end of Y12 once you've experienced the courses to find out which you enjoy most.
What advice have you got from your current school about choices?
Dd is doing History, Eng Lit and Psychology in yr 13. Originally looking at Law but now wanting to do Psychology. She regrets taking history; favourite subject at GCSE. Not having biology doesn’t seem to be a disadvantage but many universities stipilate a min grade for maths.
I think I'll take English Lit, Psychology and Philosophy. The Economics class doesn't sound great and it doesn't include as much maths as I'd hoped. I don't think I'll enjoy Biology as I didn't love it at GCSE so probably would like it less at A Level. Don't want to do History as I am awful at remember dates Thanks for all your help
Enjoy your A Levels, OP. Sounds like a fascinating and worthwhile choice of subjects to study
Philosophy is a great choice - well regarded by uni's. def don't do Biology unless you love it - it's hard!
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