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PostPosted: Wed Nov 26, 2014 6:43 pm 
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I was just wondering if anyone had any advice. DS1 is about to choose A levels. He is very good at Chemistry and wants to study it at university. He has checked the websites of a selection of Russell Group universities and they appear (mostly) to require Chemistry A level plus one of biology, physics or maths. A very few specify maths and The Student Room tells us that some students are surprised by how much maths is in a chemistry degree and may struggle without it. DS is OK at maths & should get an A or A* at GCSE with some hard work, but really doesn't like it very much & doesn't want to do A level.

Does anyone have experience of DCs applying for Chemistry. Also which universities are well thought of for chemistry - I do realise that Russell Group unis aren't necessarily the be all & end all for all subjects, but it seemed like a good place to start.

Thank you in advance.


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 26, 2014 7:01 pm 
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I think if he does not want to do Maths A level then he might not enjoy a Chemistry degree ... I would say he will be at a serious disadvantage without maths.

My OH has a Chemistry degree and we have students heading off to do Chemistry ever year ...


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 26, 2014 7:15 pm 
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Location: Chelmsford and pleased
Maths is a requirement at many universities and physics is also recommended by many due to the amount in the chemistry degree.


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 26, 2014 7:25 pm 
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I didn't go via the conventional A level route to my Chemistry degree course, but I would say an understanding of maths is vital, it comes into all aspects of the subject, especially -but not only- if he decides to specialise in physical chemistry. As G55 has said, he would be at a serious disadvantage.

The pattern spotting and problem solving elements of maths are a great help too, not just the ability to do the calculations


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 26, 2014 7:38 pm 
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Location: Cheshire
yoyo123 wrote:
it comes into all aspects of the subject, especially -but not only- if he decides to specialise in physical chemistry


not to mention very useful in Organic and Inorganic Chemistry, this where NVR comes into it's own going from compound A to E via B,C and D when one can visualise the chemical structure in your mind it so much easier to do , it's all maths and logical thinking really! not that I know anything about Chemistry :lol:

however Physics would be more important but than you still need to know advanced maths although FM may not be required.


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 26, 2014 7:47 pm 
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Thank you all for your wise replies. You are echoing what I thought & have said to DS. However his school are telling him he doesn't need maths, and should take subjects he enjoys, so I suspect that he will not choose it and I think it would be wrong of me to try to persuade him as it has to be his decision. I have suggested other courses such as pharmacy & biochemistry but he is passionate about chemistry. Of the 10 or so universities he looked up only Bristol (I think) specified maths, all the others stated chemistry plus one of maths, biology or physics. I suppose I was hoping people would say "Maths, why would you need that?" :D


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 26, 2014 7:51 pm 
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"You will obviously need chemistry at A-level, and many leading universities prefer (and sometimes require) maths at A-level due to the large mathematical content of the course, additionally a further science subject is useful (particularly physics). Many Chemistry students are shocked by the level of Maths and Physics in a basic Chemistry degree, thus it is beneficial to take at least AS Level Maths, or to reach a similar standard by the time you start in September."

http://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/wiki/Chemistry_degree

Seriously his school are not giving good advice ...


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 26, 2014 8:02 pm 
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Guest55 wrote:
"You will obviously need chemistry at A-level, and many leading universities prefer (and sometimes require) maths at A-level due to the large mathematical content of the course, additionally a further science subject is useful (particularly physics). Many Chemistry students are shocked by the level of Maths and Physics in a basic Chemistry degree, thus it is beneficial to take at least AS Level Maths, or to reach a similar standard by the time you start in September."

http://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/wiki/Chemistry_degree

Seriously his school are not giving good advice ...


I know :( That was the bit I read too.


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 26, 2014 8:04 pm 
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http://www.rsc.org/images/Careers_bookl ... -10333.pdf

Do your maths skills add up?
Mathematics is important in many aspects of chemistry and is a key part of most chemistry degree courses.
Not studying maths A-level/Higher will limit your university choices.
Although a maths A-level/Higher is not required for entry onto all chemistry degree courses, you should seriously consider studying the subject, at least to AS Level (or Higher in Scotland). If you are unable to do this, it may be worth considering some form of tutoring to help refresh and extend your maths knowledge.
If you haven’t studied maths post-16, don’t panic! Most universities provide extra maths support during your degree (especially in the first year).


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 26, 2014 8:05 pm 
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Location: caversham
scary mum wrote:
I was just wondering if anyone had any advice. DS1 is about to choose A levels. He is very good at Chemistry and wants to study it at university. He has checked the websites of a selection of Russell Group universities and they appear (mostly) to require Chemistry A level plus one of biology, physics or maths. .


We've just been through something similar with DS1 wanting to study Biology having only completed Chemistry to AS level. Maths counted as his second science.

Have to say his eventual destination, Southampton, have provided an excellent Chemistry catch up module. DS1 having AS has found it a breeze and in some ways it has rebuilt his confidence as it focuses on the chemistry he needs.

So that opens the question do the chemistry courses provide a maths course for those in need. :)

Or can your DS do AS maths or something equivalent to bridge the gap. My recollection is that maths wasn't a problem but statistics was on a chem course many decades ago.


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