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Daughter hasn’t a clue what to do at uni....help!(53 Posts)
My daughter is in lower sixth studying for Biology, French and History A levels and doing maths AS in a couple of weeks.
She did extremely well in GCSEs (10 A*,1 A) but is finding the jump to a level really hard and she’s picked 3 meaty subjects. The only one she enjoys and might consider at uni is biology but she’s very worried as her grades aren’t good in assessments.
Although she’s doing very “academic” subjects she’s actually very creative, loves music and art, has worked in catering and now retail on the weekends.She just doesn’t see studying a traditional subject at all but she really wants the university experience and a qualification that will lead to an interesting job.
But any advice at school hasn’t been terribly helpful.
Any ideas of couses she should look at?
Perhaps Uni isn’t for her just now?
Perhaps she needs to work for a while and see what she wants to pursue?
The DD of a friend of a friend is doing a degree in events management. Would something like that be of interest to your DD if she enjoys working in hospitality?
She doesn't need to rush straight into uni. My advice would be to take a year out and let her explore her options or possible career experience
Vocational degree ? My dd has a vocational degree in music would your dd be intrested in something creative
What does she want to do career wise?
Perhaps I'm biased but I have an English degree. It's a good degree to have as a basis for a lot of things. Within it you study elements of psychology, sociology, ethics, philosophy, politics, cultural studies...
Plus it teaches you to "read" ie understand anything as it teaches you to analyse any kind of text.
Dds friend did event management she has an interesting job
It’s clear that at this stage in her life University is not the correct path for her. And that’s perfectly OK. Going to uni just for the sake of going to uni is what’s wrong with so many young people. They go to uni - with no real idea of a subject they want t study or a job they want at the end of it - and either drop out mid way through or they complete the course and get a degree that they never use again.
Going to Uni is not that be all and end all.
Maybe she just needs a couple of years to get some work experience behind her. Time to grow and mature as a person, to meet new people out in the world of work. There are plenty of work abroad things she could do, to provide her with some great life experiences which may unlock an interest or spark a passion in her that leads to a career.
My dd didn't decide until after Christmas in year 13 and she is now really happy with her course and university. It is totally normal to be unsure at this point. It is also totally normal to find the leap really hard.its totally normal for girls to say they are clueless when they have really made their minds up
At the higher levels creativity and science go really well together.
She needs to Go to the open days, read the blurb. Hopefully what she wants to do will hit her.
I got exacerbated with my dd..gosh just over a year ago...as she insisted she didn't know what she wanted to do. She was making a pile of "possible" options. Although course titles varied, she was consistently picking up the same thing (a branch of biochemistry). She got sheepish at that point!
And if she is unsure in about a years time, a year out if she / you can fund it.
What wildingofthewest said she doesn't need to go to uni just because
Biology might be a struggle with no other science A levels...
Could he do History of Art as an Arts degree. Seeing she is doing history and like art. Not for a particular job but for education and decide on a career from there. In lrelend most people who do an arts degree only decide after university where they want to work and end up in all sorts of places.
History of Art springs to mind as you say she’s creative and loves art and the French/History A-Levels are the perfect background.
Alternatively how does she get on with French? A French degree will give her a wide variety of course options from language, culture and literature, she’ll get the opportunity to do a year of study in France and she’ll graduate fluent in French. It’s also general enough to leave her future job options fairly open.
She’s not alone though, many A-Level students have no idea what they want to do and just pick the subject they’re best at for want of anything else to do (I know that was me).
Her French will become very useful.
Oh thank you so much, so useful.
Yes, she’s finding biology at uni requires another science. She’s thinking of dropping French and doing maths at a level....again not sure.
Event management would be right up her street as would fashion marketing/promotion.
We have suggested a year out. Going to uni if you are unsure is an expensive option.
It’s good to hear that other children have wobbled in year 12 too.
So hard to advise them when they are stressed,/revising/have “no time to look”/want to do it all themselves/ feel pressure to go to a Russel group uni and do a traditional subject etc etc......
She could consider something like this
Very competitive to get into but there are other similar in Europe.
My oldest DD had zero idea what she wanted to do until just before she took her A levels. Then panicked that she hadn't taken the right subjects to do the course she wanted.
But she searched and found a uni that would take her to do the course with the subjects she'd done and she is now in year 2 and loving her life. She's doing paramedic science. Hadn't taken any sciences and really struggled with the academic side of A levels. She's now been diagnosed with dyslexia which explains a lot! A lot of her course is practical assessments and placements so she is learning on the job.
Be a bit wary of job related degrees. They might look good but some employers may still pick a History grad for the fashion marketing dept rather than a person holding a fashion marketing degree. Or a sociology grad for the personnel dept rather then a management degree holder who specialised in HR. It depends who is hiring!
To get an over view of fashion related degrees, look at the London College of Fashion. Everything is available! Also lots of courses at the University of the Arts, London, might be of interest.
Be wary of Events Management. Events management is very typically a career for people who already know the people who will employ them. A bit like fashion and History of Art. It can be hard to break in. What are the career options where she works? Someone must manage the companies?
My daughter didnt know what to do initially after A. Levels so did a foundation course at art college. This led to an interest and a degree course in graphic design. As she was under nineteen, the course was free.
Keeping the maths as an a level would definitely keep more options open to her.
Eg economics or PPE (depending on which uni) require maths.
@DryWhite encourage her to think about a gap year. I rushed to uni as I am also quite academic but love being creative. Changed course after completing the first full year and had to move university as a result.
Those are very good GCSEs. If she might get A* and A at A Level what about law? I really enjoyed my law degree (and am a lawyer) but you will need very high grades for that and entry is quite competitive. Half of lawyers study law at university - the other half do an extra year of study after and read other subjects instead.
raininsummer did your dd have an art a level to get on a foundation course? ds is doing non art a levels, but increasingly thinking of wanting to do an art degree - not fine art but think something like design, animation, illustration etc. Some of the places seem to require an art or design ish a level - are there places where you can do a foundation course without it?
op, no specific advice, but what sort of job would your dd see herself doing and finding interesting? Then maybe she could work back from that to choose the degree? Many won't require a specific degree, but if what she really wants to do does, that may be the place to start from?
Surely she really doesn’t have a clue about future careers at all.
Xenia we suggested law (DH is a lawyer) she did some work experience last year and has decided it’s not for her, although I could see her doing it.
I remember lots of people at school being so worried about taking gap years or taking time to resit exams because they were worried that they would be older than everyone else when they went to uni - this is absolutely not something to worry about, most of my uni friends did a gap year!