IA Earth Sciences is very interesting, and different to every other subject, involving lots of aspects of different sciences and (not much) Maths. Of course, you can’t really get away from the rocks, but as well as that there are fossils, volcanoes, earthquakes and minerals. Also, one of the main things about Earth Sciences is the field trips. In IA, there is a field trip to Arran, for one week. During this, you look at some pretty rocks, get wet (if it rains) or tanned (if the sun shines) then retire in the evening to the bar to carry on the conversations. The department is the friendliest in Cambridge – there’s less distance between students, postgraduates and lecturers when you spend the day all stood on the same rocks in the gale force winds!
Earth Sciences is a good subject for Biologists who are interested in evolution and palaeontology (you’ll get REAL fossils to work with). There are topics which complement Physics, Chemistry and, of course, the minerals part of Materials Sciences. Possibly the most important thing about Earth Sciences however, is the fact that it will give you a grounding in how our planet works on so many different scales – it complements all your science. And it’s loads of fun too!
It’s honestly not really worth buying any textbooks for 1A Earth Sciences, unless you’re thinking of carrying on with the subject. There are lots of books you might want to look at for specific topics, but the College library has them all and you won’t use them enough to make it worth the cost.
Link to course website: http://www.esc.cam.ac.uk/teaching/earth-sciences-course/part-ia