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Advice on Choosing IB Subjects! (help please)

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Hi! If you could take a moment to help me out I would be SUPER grateful.

So I have to choose my subjects in the next few weeks and I'm struggling with what to choose for my Group 3. I am only (kind of) certain of 4 things:

Biology HL. Chemistry HL. Math SL. French SL. English SL. (You can let me know if you've taken something similar to this and if you believe my choices are a good idea:) )

My dilemma is over what my Individuals and Societies course will be. My school offers only History and Economics as in class subjects, but if interested (like I am) students can take Psychology online with Pamoja. I am debating between all three because:

1) I'm very interested in Psychology but unsure about taking an online course (If anyone has taken one your opinion and experience is highly valued)

2) My History teacher (who I love) wants me to do History, which I also find interesting but not as useful for my future career ideas (I want to study neurobiology)

3) Economics is interesting to me, may be more useful in the future (than History), and is (according to me if-y research) easier to do well in.

So there's my problem. Any advice or ideas are most welcome and appreciated. Thank you!!

 

 

Edited by Biogirl

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If you're interested in neurobiology, I would imagine that the only course you would need for sure is Chemistry (not even Bio, most places wiil accept Chem with Physics Bio or Math) but you have Bio anyways so you'll be fine in terms of qualifying for entry requirements. 


History, while it may not seem to be the most useful course, teaches you a lot about critical analysis, thinking, and writing, which are incredibly beneficial in nearly all fields. Since you love your History teacher, and are not super inclined to do Economics, I'd say go with History (Economics is less interesting once you start studying it, trust me). 

Not sure about the online course, never done one myself, but if it comes to two I'd say take History over Economics and if you decide an online course is a good idea, then Psych would naturally be the best option. 

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Thank you for your advice! I'm mainly focused on either doing Psychology online or the History. I think Psychology might lead into neurobiology more but having a great teacher might be more beneficial. What's Economics HL like?

Edited by Biogirl
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2 hours ago, Biogirl said:

Thank you for your advise! I'm mainly focused on either doing Psychology online or the History. I think Psychology might lead into neurobiology more but having a great teacher might be more beneficial. What's Economics HL like?

First semester of Economics HL - lots of rote memorising, definitions, graph appearances, and quite a bit of (fairly basic) mathematics. Think along the lines of simultaneous equation solving (having two equations and setting them equal) as well as calculating percentages. Not particularly interesting, but not bad either.

Second semester - Essay writing, involves a deeper understanding of markets and how they can fail. We're now moving into macroeconomics, which so far seems interesting, in that there's a lot to talk about. 

Overall, Economics is a combination of maths ability, memorising, and essay writing. History and Psychology will both be much heavier on the essay writing but doubtlessly void of the maths you need for Economics. 

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Personally, I would advise you to chose what you are more interested in right now. This is SUCH an important factor for 2 good years and a satisfactory outcome. So if you think you're going to have a great time in history? Pick history. If you think psychology is going to be amazingly exciting, pick that. You don't have much time left to just get out of life what you really enjoy, so take these 2 tough years and add a little joy, and don't see it as preparation for uni or college or what you want to do after. As tough as IB is, I really do think that the program is Great - and I capitalise it because I'm very serious here. I'm done in May, and I have to admit that so far, the past 2 years has been the best of my life, because I've allowed myself to just enjoy it, and let my interests and curiosity grab hold of me - because in the IB system, you can to a much further extent than other school systems choose for yourself what you want to spend your time on, and because you have less subjects, you hav more lessons per subject, so you go much more n depth with your subjects than you would do, e.g. in the Danish High School System, which I did not want to be part of, exactly because I don't feel like having 14 subjects, 9 of which I don't give a flying **** about.

So yes, it's tough; but chose what you think will add to YOU, and not your education.

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12 hours ago, Ditteee said:

Personally, I would advise you to chose what you are more interested in right now. This is SUCH an important factor for 2 good years and a satisfactory outcome. So if you think you're going to have a great time in history? Pick history. If you think psychology is going to be amazingly exciting, pick that. You don't have much time left to just get out of life what you really enjoy, so take these 2 tough years and add a little joy, and don't see it as preparation for uni or college or what you want to do after. As tough as IB is, I really do think that the program is Great - and I capitalise it because I'm very serious here. I'm done in May, and I have to admit that so far, the past 2 years has been the best of my life, because I've allowed myself to just enjoy it, and let my interests and curiosity grab hold of me - because in the IB system, you can to a much further extent than other school systems choose for yourself what you want to spend your time on, and because you have less subjects, you hav more lessons per subject, so you go much more n depth with your subjects than you would do, e.g. in the Danish High School System, which I did not want to be part of, exactly because I don't feel like having 14 subjects, 9 of which I don't give a flying **** about.

So yes, it's tough; but chose what you think will add to YOU, and not your education.

yh i agree here. you should look for and choose the subjects that you feel you can exceed in while loving every moment of it. im not sure about requirements for neurobiology, but i figure that you WILL need biology, as well as chemistry, but i would not recommend taking chemistry HL, not only for its reputation as one of the hardest subjects in IB(i believe that if you put your mind to something, anything can be achieved) but its also more of a pain in the neck than anything. why risk your grades, when there are ways to boost them, which need be by taking the easier subject. so i would say go and spend time with your history teacher, because in the end, its not like these courses are gonna affect you. only the sciences will for your ambition.

 

and again, i completely agree with you dittee with snational school systems. although the australian system sounds a LOT MORE easier than your danish school system, theres also the added disadvantage that if you dont make top 3, your grades will be pulled down to the average of the class, so yeh...

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13 hours ago, Ditteee said:

Personally, I would advise you to chose what you are more interested in right now. This is SUCH an important factor for 2 good years and a satisfactory outcome. So if you think you're going to have a great time in history? Pick history. If you think psychology is going to be amazingly exciting, pick that. You don't have much time left to just get out of life what you really enjoy, so take these 2 tough years and add a little joy, and don't see it as preparation for uni or college or what you want to do after. As tough as IB is, I really do think that the program is Great - and I capitalise it because I'm very serious here. I'm done in May, and I have to admit that so far, the past 2 years has been the best of my life, because I've allowed myself to just enjoy it, and let my interests and curiosity grab hold of me - because in the IB system, you can to a much further extent than other school systems choose for yourself what you want to spend your time on, and because you have less subjects, you hav more lessons per subject, so you go much more n depth with your subjects than you would do, e.g. in the Danish High School System, which I did not want to be part of, exactly because I don't feel like having 14 subjects, 9 of which I don't give a flying **** about.

So yes, it's tough; but chose what you think will add to YOU, and not your education.

Thank you so much, you're attitude is inspirational and I love your outlook on the IB. I'm half Danish but living in Australia :D. ( Jeg kan forsto og tale lidt Dansk, men jeg kan ikke stave godt. ) I'd say I'm most passionate about Psychology but I've never taken it as a subject so I'm not sure what it would be like to learn it. Thank you and I hope you do well in your exams!

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3 hours ago, talalrulez said:

 but i figure that you WILL need biology, as well as chemistry, but i would not recommend taking chemistry HL, not only for its reputation as one of the hardest subjects 

Neuroscience courses and even medicine (somewhat surprisingly) require Chem HL more often than Bio HL.

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If I were you I would do History or Economics, depending on how you feel about which one you'd prefer to do. Enjoying a subject will certainly help you!

Psychology will not only be an online course, but it's also just a load of memorising of studies and regurgitating them. IMO it is quite boring! And actually less related to neurobiology than you might imagine. Avoiding the memorisation burden of Psychology will be useful around the time of your final exams when you have to cram all this stuff at once.

The good thing about doing History or Economics will be that it shows you are a more versatile candidate, because you are taking a wider range of subjects (Psychology being more like a science). This does matter to some Universities. It also gives you some light relief from science.

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19 hours ago, dhirajsnarula said:

Neuroscience courses and even medicine (somewhat surprisingly) require Chem HL more often than Bio HL.

actually one of my mates that recently completed IB and got a 38 said he would have been allowed to do medicine in australia, but he idnt get a good enough UMAT score, however he was offered to do medicine in Egypt, but they said he needed to do chem HL, so i guess we're both right on this one. i guess it just depends on the university itself.

btw my friend's now doing Optometry.

Edited by talalrulez

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I'm doing Economics SL (even though what I want to study is not relevant to it) and it is probably one of my most useful IB subjects. Before Economics I had no idea what was in the news half the time and now I understand everything 20 times better. I know I probably won't have an Economics course again ever in my life so it definitely makes me feel a lot more educated and like I can actually understand what's going on around tme and be able to make political decisions etc. It's also a pretty straightforward course and has the easiest Internal Assessment (in my opinion). 

History is known for being a pretty difficult subject to do well but if you think you will enjoy it more than the others you should choose it irrespective of whether it is useful or not. Now for Psychology doing an online course is definitely more demanding because it requires a lot more motivation and responsibility on your part. 

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