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PostPosted: Sun Feb 23, 2014 6:14 pm 
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Location: Chelmsford and pleased
Does anyone have experience of applying to university for an engineering degree without further maths A level?


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 23, 2014 6:28 pm 
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Tinkers is your woman, r Kenyan cow girl for career advice knowledge.

Further maths helps for structural engineering, the rest I don't know? Tbh even in the dark ages when I was doing an add on acoustic engineer diploma/module the maths was only used for proofs and calibration, the rest had gone to whizzy engineering programmes (a technical term of course) ...thank goodness, because the maths really hurt my head at uni...structural engineering modules were feared by many!


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 23, 2014 6:39 pm 
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And here I am. Did I hear my name mentioned?

Engineering courses generally require A levels in maths and physics. Chemical engineering needs chemistry, (clue in the name) but some will take you with maths and chemistry and not physics. Having done chem eng I wouldn't recommend doing that. Indeed one of the grads working for me last year mentioned that some on his course didn't have physics and struggled.

As for further maths, I think some unis strongly recommend it, Cambridge springs to mind? Of course not all sixth forms offer it, so I would hope unis bear that in mind. Best to check individual courses.

I did maths, further maths, physics and chemistry myself. I didn't need further maths and none of my offers included it. However it hugely helped with my first year maths, especially since our maths lecturer was dire.

If your DC has the chance to do further maths and wants to do engineering, I'd say take it. Engineering is quite maths intensive.


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 23, 2014 6:41 pm 
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There was a discussion about this a while ago I think.
It will depend which Universities are being applied for, what type of engineering and also whether the school offers Further maths as standard.
They moved some of the trickier stuff out of maths and into F maths a few years ago so it would def help with the degree course.

I do know there are boys who apply to engineering from DCs school without FM but those looking for the 'better' courses do have it. For the most competitive courses its a question of a reason to exclude and it will raise the question of 'why not?'

If there is still the choice then would strongly recommend it - if its 'work with what you've got' then it might be worth contacting potential courses to see what feedback you get so as to target applications to those who are least concerned.

Work experience (relevant!) might help mitigate?
Or taking AS FM as an extra in year 13?


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 23, 2014 6:44 pm 
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Location: Solihull, West Midlands
My eldest son did just this successfully several years ago (and a not especially stunning Maths grade either) - his other subjects were Physics & Design Tech (Resistant Materials). He went to Leicester Uni, and is still there completing a PhD. However he did have additional points in his favour - he participated in the Engineering education scheme in Yr12 (a group of 4 students working once a week with a local engineering firm to complete a genuinely useful project) and also took part in the official Year in Industry with the same firm, and as part of that scheme he was required to take a distance-learning maths module which I believe was designed to give the same material as the relevant parts of a Further Maths A level. (he applied before the gap year for a deferred place).

I know things are more competitive nowadays, but the latest info on the Student room page is:

Quote:
Mathematics is a mandatory requirement for virtually all BEng/MEng courses. Some universities only ask for an AS-level in Mathematics, providing the applicant offers a full A-level in Physics.

Further Mathematics, though not a formal requirement at any university yet, would benefit an engineering applicant particularly at the top universities. Physics, though not an absolute requirement at many universities, is the primary 'preferred' subject. Chemistry would complement mathematics and physics, and is preferred (and often required) for many chemical engineering applicants.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 24, 2014 7:00 am 
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Sorry - only just seen this due to a late night party last night (yes, I know! Bad mother, and on a school night....even worse, it has just taken me three attempts to log in as my fingers won't do what my addled brain is telling them!!)

Further maths for engineering? In a nut shell, not essential no, but you will preclude certain Universities instantly if you don't take it (ie *some* of them do require it) so if you have a hankering to go to any particular institution, have a squeeze at their prospectus and check first. However, it is exceptionally useful for all engineering courses - most uni admissions staff I have spoken to over the years have bemoaned the standard of maths coming in to engineering courses - they have had to teach hard and fast in the first year and those with better maths qualifications and understanding cope much better.

If your school doesn't offer it then make sure you give a nod to this in your UCAS application and then go on to tell them about all the whizzy engineering type projects you have undertaken instead (eg STEM etc) to make up for it!


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 24, 2014 7:23 am 
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Location: Chelmsford and pleased
DS has just dropped it as he was trying to fit in both maths A levels as a single option and was missing 6 lessons each fortnight. He is taking maths, physics, chemistry and FrenchA level.

We had anticipated him taking further maths AS next year when he has finished French but school are not keen. They seem to think that further maths doesn't matter.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 24, 2014 7:51 am 
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Probably better to have a thorough learning programme for maths, than a bit of both for maths and further maths, I think he has done the best thing tbh.

Definitely worth getting on a course, or finding work experience. I learnt more maths working in the acoustics industry than I did at school or uni, even before my diploma. I had a very good boss, who gently reminded me all I had learnt on paper, and put it into context.

The best thing was knowing that the person on site you were selling product to (I became a sales manager) often had zero idea what you were talking about, and the product, or sound testing was sold at the first mention of logarithm. :lol:


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 24, 2014 11:38 am 
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I think its both about what he will need for degree level study and what he will need to get entry to a top rate course.

It should be perfectly possible to do AS F Maths next year alongside the 3 remaining A levels, especially given the overlap with Physics. If the school timetabling is an issue then given he has already done some of it this year it should be possible to self-teach along with some tutoring - hopefully from the school but maybe in combination with some private support if you can manage it.

It will give him some extra skills ready for Uni and also demonstrate commitment.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 24, 2014 12:25 pm 
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DS who is considering electrical or chemical engineering is only going to take AS further maths. His school advised him that most universities are interested in the Mechanics modules so as long as he takes them the rest of the further maths A level is not as important. Whether this advice is right remains to be seen!
Does your DS have any choice over the modules he takes in his A level maths? If he can take M1 and M2 as part of the A level then he would just have M3 to do as a stand alone module.


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