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What do dc who like ^all^ the sciences do at A level?

(19 Posts)
Sadik Tue 03-May-16 21:40:34

I should say, this is purely a hypothetical question, since dd is only in yr 9! But when she was choosing options, obviously we talked quite a bit about what subjects she likes and might want potentially to continue with in the future.

ATM she enjoys physics/maths a lot, and is quite inspired by a friends' son who has gone off to study theoretical physics at uni. But she's also always enjoyed biology too, and reads quite a bit of stuff related to the life sciences out of school.

It struck me, that there must be a lot of dc like that, who enjoy both the life sciences and physics/maths. What do they do when it comes to A level? Are they stuck with going either a physics-y route with physics/chemistry/maths or a life sciences route with biology/chemistry/maths? Or is there a cunning third way I haven't thought of that keeps all their options open?

CMOTDibbler Tue 03-May-16 21:48:47

I did maths, physics, biology and chemistry. Then went on to study medical physics as my first degree

TheSecondOfHerName Tue 03-May-16 21:51:41

I did Maths, Physics, Biology and Chemistry A-levels.

DS2 (currently Y9) is pretty sure about Maths, Physics and Chemistry. He will choose either Further Maths or Biology as his fourth, depending on how his interests develop closer to the time.

WhoKnowsWhereTheTimeG0es Tue 03-May-16 21:54:01

I did physics, chemistry and pure maths, having dropped biology at 14. Then onto a degree in chemistry and a career in chemistry/biology. So with hindsight I wish I hadn't dropped biology at 14 and taken it for A level instead of physics (or possibly maths). I'm studying biology with the Open Uni now to catch up.

I suppose it really does depend what you want to do longer term. I would think biology would keep more options open than physics, but could be wrong, I guess physics is more useful if you want to go into engineering for example.

gasman Tue 03-May-16 21:54:24

Maths, physics, chemistry, biology a-levels.

Couldn't cope with A-level Maths so settled for an AS in that and one in Engkish too (school were piloting making the science kids do English, I got an A so I'm not complaining!)

Sadik Tue 03-May-16 21:55:48

Interesting - I thought these days 4 A levels was mostly considered a bad idea? Or can dc still start with 4 at AS and drop one? (Complicating matters, we're in Wales where the AS / A2 setup is still used.)

elephantoverthehill Tue 03-May-16 21:56:52

Maths, Physics and Chemistry gives the widest of options. blush sorry Biology

TheSecondOfHerName Tue 03-May-16 22:08:45

I think 4 A-levels would be a tough workload if you did very different subjects (e.g. Maths, History, German, Art). In my experience of doing Maths and three Science subjects, there was a fair bit of overlap of skills.

Laniakea Tue 03-May-16 22:31:59

I did biology, chemistry, maths & went on to do medicine.

DD (only year 10 but thinking ahead) currently wants to do physics, biology & either chemistry or geography ... not the most conventional of combinations! She's been looking at earth sciences/oceanography courses at university.

Chlorella Tue 03-May-16 22:34:58

I did biology, chemistry and physics, (long time ago when most people only did 3). I wouldn't recommend physics without maths though. So B C M or C P M but not B C P!

campfan Tue 03-May-16 22:42:31

I did biology/chemistry/physics and AS French and went on to do medicine at Cambridge. So in reference to above post I would say you don't need to do maths to do physics. I certainly didn't feel behind with physics.
Medicine isn't a great job these days though...

Haggisfish Tue 03-May-16 22:43:47

Most current year nines will only do three a levels. Not sure what they will do tbh!

hellsbells99 Tue 03-May-16 22:46:17

Both my DDs took the 3 sciences & maths in lower 6th. DD1 dropped physics after AS and DD2 dropped biology. DD2 didn't want to drop any but was persuaded to - but she has now picked up Further maths AS level in upper 6th! DD2 would have hated being restricted to 3 ALevels in lower 6th - particularly as career wise, she will unsure what 'path' to follow

MakingJudySmile Tue 03-May-16 22:51:33

Chemistry, Maths with statistics and Biology and a AO in Pure Maths in the first year (stab in the dark would be AOs are no longer!!)

Hindsight told me I shouldn't have done chemistry.

Sadik Wed 04-May-16 07:58:23

campfan, fortunately DD is sure she doesn't want to be a doctor or a vet!

Laniakea Wed 04-May-16 08:20:02

mine too thankfully!

dh & dbro both did phys/chem/maths & went onto engineering/computing, my dsis did chem/biol/psych & ended up doing human sciences at UCL ... she wanted to do physics A level but wasn't confident in her maths. She considered natural sciences at university but again, too much maths.

Kenworthington Wed 04-May-16 08:31:32

Mine is doing maths biology chemistry and psychology. He's about to do his AS levels and depending on results will either drop psychology (his 'easy' subject but he's found it interesting and doing well in it) or maths (which he's found very hard but would be useful.

Ohtobeskiing Wed 04-May-16 08:36:16

What about looking at something like marine biology and oceanography. Like this

catslife Wed 04-May-16 08:47:39

Most sixth forms local to me still allow pupils to take 4 subjects in Y12 and drop one at the end of the year. This seems to be true even if pupils don't take the actual AS level exams (some sixth forms are still offering these and others are not).
Currently all Sciences are now linear A levels and Maths will also be linear by the time your dc reaches sixth form.
It may become clearer as your child studies for their GCSEs which branch of Science suits them best which will help make the decision. However should he be equally interested/good at all Sciences later on, it is still often possible to take all 3 Sciences at A level.

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