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My chances of getting in.

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    I'm doing my AS's this year and I am currently attending a school overseas (and have done so for the past 3 years). I'm hoping to apply for a course in Economics, and I was wondering what you thought my chances of an offer may be to the following Universities:

    1. Cambridge
    2. UCL
    3. Durham
    4. York
    5. Surrey

    I completed my IGCSEs (CIE) with 6 A*s and 4As. I expect to receive between 3As, 1B and 1C at AS to 4As and a C. I also hope to obtain 1-2A*s at A-Level and 1A and a B (perhaps 2 As and no Bs too). My A-Level board is CIE.

    On a side note, do the top Universities take into account that CIE is a relatively harder board (and international) and would therefore differentiate my qualifications between that of other applicants?


    Thanks in advance!
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    You seem quite sure of the C. If your going to apply with predictions and AS Results I dont think you have much of a shot at camb/ucl/durham as applicants there generally have AAAA at AS and predicted A*AA at A2. Probably have a chance for your other two choices.

    As for your side note, they dont care. A person with better grades in Edexcel or AQA has a better shot. The only difference would be that if you get an interview at cambridge they might test you differently based on their own broader syllabus.
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    Yeah, I'm saying my results at AS will either be: 3As a B and a C OR 4As and a C. I'd say my chances of 4As are probably 50-50.

    At A-Level, I'm quite sure I will obtain at least 1 A* (if not 2) and at least another A (if not 2, if not another A then a B)
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    Not much point in you worrying about it now. Best you wait till AS results come out ( I think in August for CIE ? ) before you consider your choices. Oh and for whats its worth I got 2 A*'s at CIE aswell so I know what you mean when you say its a harder board but unfortunately it does not matter on applications.
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    CIE grades will be out in August, I've been just looking into this stuff recently so I can plan ahead.
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    That C is going to hurt you. I'm not sure but you might actually be better off just dropping the subject you think you're going to get a C in and therefore not having to put it on your application....

    Other than that, it's entirely down to how you do this year, if you get 4 As with high UMS you stand a decent chance at any of those universities assuming you have the personal statement to back it up
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    Yeah, I thought the C was going to hurt me too. But I've already paid for the exam, and there's not much I can do now... Besides, it's Thinking Skills. I don't think Universities pay much attention to it anyway.

    For the record, my other 4 subjects are Maths Physics History and Economics; I may take up Further Maths for AS next year.
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    (Original post by Hebbamundo)
    For the record, my other 4 subjects are Maths Physics History and Economics; I may take up Further Maths for AS next year.
    Definitely take Further Maths if you're going for Economics. My friend at Cambridge informs me that it has proved invaluable.
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    (Original post by Hebbamundo)
    Yeah, I thought the C was going to hurt me too. But I've already paid for the exam, and there's not much I can do now... Besides, it's Thinking Skills. I don't think Universities pay much attention to it anyway.

    For the record, my other 4 subjects are Maths Physics History and Economics; I may take up Further Maths for AS next year.
    GCSEs are fine, AS subjects are strong, and for most universities the AS grades you mentioned would be fine. I'd be concerned by the fact that for Cambridge they attach a huge importance to AS UMS scores (much more than GCSE grades) and you would really need to get all As (or near that) with 93-96% UMS average accross your three most relevant subjects. This is especially true of Economics, for which there are about 8 applicants per place, making it very competitive by Cambridge standards. In addition, most people who apply will have studied Further Maths, so perhaps you should look into studying that and drop History or Physics after AS. Good luck!

    Edit: Don't worry about the Thinking Skills C. That's perfectly normal and in any case most universities will discount it.
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    @Ho Chi Minh

    Would it be advantageous to drop Physics for A2 and instead pick up Further Maths AS? Assuming the workload is significant enough for me to be unable to study both and get As?
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    If you have the opportunity to do Further Maths and you want to give Cambridge a good shot, I would ask your teacher about the possibility of studying it and what you might be letting yourself in for.

    It would be perhaps slightly more advantageous in terms of ease of studying the course than Physics, but the only formal requirement for the Cambridge Economics course is Maths. (Sorry, I don't know the position on FM for other universities.) Don't do Further Maths at the detriment of studying something you are very good at and enjoy, though; the most important thing is that you get good grades with high UMS.

    I would certainly try and find some people who have studied the Economics course and ask for more informed opinions before you rush into any decision about whether to study FM, because it's quite tough and time consuming. Sorry I can't be of more help.

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Updated: March 6, 2012
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