The A Level Programme
If you decide to opt for A-Levels it is advisable to choose subjects which will work well together for you, bearing always in mind your future study and career intentions.
In some cases, a particular combination of subjects will be an absolute requirement for a university course. Engineering, for instance, will require both Maths and Physics (though not, as sometimes believed, Design Technology). Some university courses (Maths, English, History etc) cannot usually be accessed without an A-Level in the subject itself; in others (Law, Economics) that will not be a deal-breaker. Sometimes, however, another subject is surprisingly required – what most Economics departments will want you to have is Maths. In the classic case of Medicine, Biology (most people’s intuitive idea of the most closely-related subject) will not necessarily be essential; Chemistry, however, will. In addition, definitions of subject groupings will sometimes vary. Medical courses generally stipulate “Chemistry plus another Science” (or another two), but they will count Maths as a Science. Sports Science courses will do likewise, but may also count Psychology.
The above are just examples of issues on which university applicants need to make sure they are thoroughly informed. The key message is: research properly, by paying careful attention to each university’s published admissions criteria, and also by consulting the relevant teaching staff at School, and in particular Mr Hunt.
Whatever subjects you choose, however, you need to remember that a strong performance at AS-Level is crucial, since those are the only results you will be able to show at the moment when you are asking universities to consider you. Be aware also that dropping one of your four subjects in Year 13 is unlikely to be a good plan – although in principle a university place can be gained with three A-Levels, most of your competitors for the same places will have at least one more.
ART & DESIGN (FINE ART)
MATHS & FURTHER MATHS
MODERN LANGUAGES – FRENCH, GERMAN, SPANISH