Can I take Arts HL for STEM degree at a top college?

Hey there. I haven’t seen many STEM students take an arts subject in the IB, and was wondering if that would make my application to Ivies or top colleges as a STEM major less appealing. But I enjoy film and want to keep it as my third HL after Physics and Maths. My advisor suggests looking into a science subject or a language instead of film as that would make my application more interesting. I really want to apply to Stanford too, but I don’t want to take any subject that may hinder my application. What do you reckon I should do?

Hey MKTMariam,

It is hard to evaluate this in isolation - can you send me a copy of your CV with all your HL and SLs as well as SAT/SAT subject tests and any extra-curriculars? It is definitely possible to take film and still get in but it will depend on other parts of your application. My email is


I haven’t started junior year yet and haven’t taken any SAT tests either. I just wanted to see how that would look generally in an application. But my junior and sophomore scores have been all A’s and I’ve done some volunteering, to answer your question.