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Picking your A-Levels

For some, choosing your A levels may be a no-brainer, something you’ve had planned for quite some time. But what if it’s not? How do you go about choosing the subjects that may ultimately decide what course you may do at uni, and future career?! BREATHE. Our latest Top 5  is here to help you with that all-important decision.


Maybe the most obvious way to pick your choices is to think about the subjects you’re currently studying and which you’re enjoying and doing well in. But take note, A levels are a big step up from GCSE’s, so go for subjects you’re confident in– you wouldn’t want to miss out on uni because of low grades from the wrong choices!


Got a specific degree in mind that you’d like to study at University? It’s worth having a look at whether it requires you to have specific GCSE and A level qualifications! For example, if you’d like to study Pharmacology at Newcastle University, A level Biology and at least AS Chemistry is required.


Got your heart set on one or two subjects but not sure where you’re going with the rest? You could do yourself a massive favour and take complementing subjects. For example, if you consider yourself a budding Physician, A level Maths and particularly Maths Mechanics is bound to help you out.


Or maybe you’re really motivated by a particular career path? It’s worth having a look into whether your aspirations require a specific degree, which would impact which subjects you choose at A level. Want to be a dentist? Then you’ll need to study Dentistry at University. To do that you’ll need Biology and Chemistry A level with As in both! See what we mean?


Most importantly, doing as much research as possible into your options is essential. Ask your teachers about the content of the subjects, look at online forums like The Student Room, speak to students from the year above and see what they’re up to and even check out the exam board websites. If a subject doesn’t sound all that interesting to you, it’s probably not worth chancing it – if you’re genuinely interested in it you’ll be more motivated to revise and get those grades!

Hopefully that’s some food for thought, but even if you think you’ve got it sorted and it doesn’t go to plan, it’s not uncommon for students to switch their choices a couple of weeks in. Before you apply you should check the entry requirements for your chosen degree.

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