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Dropping Maths in favour of Extended Project?

Posted: Tue Oct 12, 2010 5:47 pm UTC
by MysteryBall
Okay guys, I have a sticky situation here. Basically, I absolutely hate my Maths AS Level, and was planning on dropping it at A2. This is UK college as an FYI, so basically when you turn 17 and 18. I then realised that I actually don't think I can stand doing one year of it either, and started working out ways I could drop it in favour of something else. Since it would be rather difficult to swap subjects so far into the year, and since I'm lame and don't actually find any of the other subjects other than those I'm taking (Computing, Physics, Business Studies and Maths (Mechanics)) I thought about doing an Extended Project and dropping Maths completely right now.

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Now, these are worth the same as my Maths AS would be, up to 70 UCAS points for an A*, and chances are I could probably ace this but not Maths so I'd end up with a better grade in the long run.

What am I planning on doing at Uni? I was going to do CompSci, but decided against it when I discovered how much Mathematics is involved, and was recommended the Business Information Systems BSc Honours Degree, which is basically programming and infrastructure/systems administration, which pretty much sums me up since that's where I'd like to go. Now, I took Maths because of CompSci, but BIS doesn't actually need it, so I really don't need to do it, I was speaking the other day to a guy, when they did it half the people on the course didn't even know how to do multiplication, so I guess I have a pretty good advantage?

Again, my current courses are Computing, Physics, Business Studies and Maths Mechanics (derivative of Maths), and I need 260 UCAS to get into this Uni course. I'm probably headed towards and A in Computing and Business in both years, which gives me 240 points in total right off the bat, followed by Physics either an A or a B. On top of this, I have this shoddy Work Skills BTEC which we all have to do which is worth 60 points. The Extended Project is the equivalent of an AS Level, so that's 60/70 points more if I do it properly (I'd be writing some sort of system in C# probably, I know another guy who's doing the same for a Comic Shop Inventory System).

Any ideas guys? Really don't want to stick with Maths if I don't have to, it's incredibly boring, dull and rather painful where I am.

Sidenote: First year of UK College.

EDIT: And now is when I find out the EPs aren't available till June (Summer for research, Autumn for working on it, etc). Great, now I'm well and truly stuffed, unless I can somehow convince them my project is severely longer and I need more time (a year) on it. D:

Re: Dropping Maths in favour of Extended Project?

Posted: Wed Oct 13, 2010 4:35 pm UTC
by existential_elevator, ummmm, speaking as someone with undisclosed insider knowledge PM me if you want more of a rationale don't do the Extended Project. Not unless you either think you're going to fail maths, or if you can't pick up a different AS level. If you're set on doing it, check with the university you want to apply to that they will accept UCAS points attracted by this qualification, as it will not be recognised by all institutions.

Re: Dropping Maths in favour of Extended Project?

Posted: Wed Oct 13, 2010 4:48 pm UTC
by MysteryBall
Well, my negative attitude towards the subject probably won't reflect well on my grade, and even if they don't regard the Extended Project as a real grade (most will), I'll still have 400 or so UCAS points which is more than enough, apparently getting in to the course is fairly easy (I know a guy who managed it with no A Levels to his name).

Re: Dropping Maths in favour of Extended Project?

Posted: Wed Oct 13, 2010 6:19 pm UTC
by Game_boy
What about General Studies? A worthless qualification, but the exams don't require any teaching time ( I didn't attend any classes and got an A*) and you could sit the full A-level in one day for 100-120 free UCAS points.

I'd question how employable any degree that only requires 260 UCAS points (BCC at A-level). With AAA or AAB you should be aiming for a much better university and/or course.

UCAS points in themselves are not worth much for anything except University entrance, so don't do qualifications just to put on your CV that you got X UCAS Points. Just get what you need. Most prestigious universities (i.e. ones that lead to graduate jobs) ask for specific grades in your subjects.

Re: Dropping Maths in favour of Extended Project?

Posted: Wed Oct 13, 2010 6:35 pm UTC
by MysteryBall
Much better uni/course? Well, this is pretty much the course that sums me up, as I said I don't really want to do Computer Science because it's such a dull subject, and this is really where my heart sits in terms of what I enjoy doing. I, unusually, don't really want to go to Cambridge/Oxford or something, they just don't appeal to me, and I rather want to stay relatively close to home.

I don't think they do General Studies here.

Re: Dropping Maths in favour of Extended Project?

Posted: Thu Oct 14, 2010 4:19 pm UTC
by Game_boy
Doesn't matter, it doesn't require any teaching as I said. Just get your exam officer to enter you for the four modules (if that is what you want).

If your impression of CS is based on A-level Computing, scratch that notion. VB and tedious database construction is not what CS is about. If you want to do something else then go for it, but there's a reason that certain courses and universities are sought after.

I am at Cambridge doing Physics by the way. It's awesome. So I can't claim to be neutral concerning Oxbridge.

Re: Dropping Maths in favour of Extended Project?

Posted: Sun Nov 21, 2010 12:18 am UTC
by Hails
Cue wrote:I don't think they do General Studies here.

Most English Sixth forms or colleges do, and its a waste of timee! Only 2 universites accept it, so having a 5th subject really is a hassle, extended project is sposed to be craaazyyy hard, and most people only do it if they want oxford or cambridge, but if you think you're up to it do it, in the end you don't want to have made life decisions cause some people on the internet told you to... ALSO my brother wasn't sure if CS would be dull, he's taking it at Nottingham and ABSOLUTELY loving it.. So don't close down all your options

Re: Dropping Maths in favour of Extended Project?

Posted: Tue Nov 23, 2010 11:01 pm UTC
I'm the same age as you so I can offer a similar point of view.

I wouldn't bother with general studies, many of the universities you're aiming at won't count it and, it's fairly dull. As for the maths/extended project thing, I think that depends mainly on whether you can come up with an idea for it that you'll enjoy otherwise it'll probably come out as badly as you seem to think your maths will and will be accepted by fewer unis. Also, my school is really pushing EPs at us but of the ones who did it last year (about 30), only one was in STEM (science, technology, engineering and maths) area (it was a tennis ball launching machine) and most of the others were incredibly waffle-y art-y things or else long history essays (one person wrote 13000 words on the punic wars, he had to cut it down to 8000 in the end).

Lastly, I'd like to say that as you go further on the mechanics and physics, the more the maths that you would cover in maths will help you so the extra work now will, hopefully, reduce the workload later.

Whatever you do, good luck. :)

Re: Dropping Maths in favour of Extended Project?

Posted: Thu Nov 25, 2010 6:53 pm UTC
by Game_boy
I agree General Studies is a waste of time, but if you need cheap UCAS points and offers are only in terms of points that's when it becomes worth it.