Can I Study Physics? A-Levels, GCSEs & University

In summary: Good luck!In summary, you can't do A-level physics without taking an entire A-level course. You may be able to do it if you take a foundation year.
  • #1
blaire
2
0
I'm starting a college course in a month and I'll be studying the following A-levels: chemistry, maths, biology and psychology.

When I applied for my course I was under the impression that A-level physics would be a part of it, but I found out during my interview that it is not.

My issue is that my true passion is physics, but this is the only science course I can do in my part of the country with my GCSE grades, and for personal reasons I can't afford to drop this course and look for something else at the moment.

Will it still be possible for me to study physics in university? If not, is it likely that I can become a physicist later in life?
 
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  • #2
blaire said:
I'm starting a college course in a month and I'll be studying the following A-levels: chemistry, maths, biology and psychology.

When I applied for my course I was under the impression that A-level physics would be a part of it, but I found out during my interview that it is not.

My issue is that my true passion is physics, but this is the only science course I can do in my part of the country with my GCSE grades, and for personal reasons I can't afford to drop this course and look for something else at the moment.

Will it still be possible for me to study physics in university? If not, is it likely that I can become a physicist later in life?
I don't know what to say. You either find the time to study A-level physics on your own. You can always sit an A-level exam, can't you? In that case, you might have to sacrifice something like psychology. Do you have to pass psychology to do physics at university? That said, you may need to do some physics labs and pass those modules.

Or, take another year. Get a job next year and do A-level physics in your spare time. And further maths!
 
  • #3
Is it possible to get an A-level physics qualification without taking an entire A-level course? (As in, if I teach myself A-level physics.)
 
  • #4
blaire said:
Is it possible to get an A-level physics qualification without taking an entire A-level course? (As in, if I teach myself A-level physics.)
As I said above, the lab work might be a problem. As far as I'm aware, certainly for an adult, you can sit an A-level exam as a private individual.

If I were you I'd talk to the physics dept at one of the universities you are interested in. See what they suggest.
 
  • #5
Since you mentioned A-levels, I will assume you are in the UK, I recently graduated from university so I may be able to offer some advice. One thing I do know is that a lot of universities in England have a Foundation Year option, aimed at students who either did not get the grades they needed at A-Level, or students who were not able to study A-Level Physics but got good grades in their non-physics related subjects.

While not ideal, since you have to do an extra year at the start of your degree, it may be something you wish to explore if it turns out that you cannot do an A-Level physics.

From solely my own experience, a foundation year can be a great way to settle in to university life and prepare before starting your Physics degree proper.
 

Related to Can I Study Physics? A-Levels, GCSEs & University

What A-Levels do I need to study physics at university?

To study physics at university, you typically need A-Levels in Physics and Mathematics. Some universities may also require or prefer an additional science subject such as Chemistry or Further Mathematics.

Can I study physics at university without taking A-Level Physics?

It is generally very difficult to study physics at university without A-Level Physics, as most programs require it for entry. However, some universities may offer foundation year courses to help you meet the prerequisites.

What GCSEs do I need to take A-Level Physics?

To take A-Level Physics, you usually need at least a grade 6 or 7 (B or A) in GCSE Physics or Combined Science, as well as a similar grade in GCSE Mathematics. Strong performance in these subjects indicates readiness for the challenges of A-Level Physics.

Is A-Level Mathematics necessary for studying A-Level Physics?

Yes, A-Level Mathematics is highly recommended and often required for studying A-Level Physics. The mathematical concepts and skills learned in A-Level Mathematics are essential for understanding and solving problems in physics.

What career opportunities are available with a degree in physics?

A degree in physics opens up a wide range of career opportunities. Graduates can work in research, engineering, data analysis, finance, education, software development, and many other fields. The problem-solving and analytical skills gained from studying physics are highly valued in various industries.

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