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Help me, my situation and possible options

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    Hi All,

    I'm 19 and working full time in an IT apprenticeship currently. My education thus far has been GCSE's at a private boarding school called Lord Wandsworth College, I got fairly good grades, mostly A's or B's.

    I then went to Alton College, where I pretty much ****ed up. Excuses and **** aside, I got a B AS Biology, C AS Computing, some other mediocre grades in AS Chem, Psych and full A levels in I think Computing and Bio but very poor, D's probably. (I am in the process of contacting my college to find the exact grades out..)

    What I want to know is, what are the options for me going to Uni?
    I am willing to do foundation courses. My main interests in courses would be computing/IT/programming related. I saw a g401 course at Goldsmiths which included year 0.

    I would class myself as quite intelligent but back then I was unmotivated as ****.

    Obviously things have changed and I am asking if anyone can help me out, I would want to go to uni after completing this apprenticeship(apparantly worth 2 a levels) but would my situation be at all viable?

    When would I start to apply on UCAS for a 2013 course also. And how do I sort out finance.

    Any help or guidance is appreciated.

    Thanks

    Steve
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    (Original post by S7eve)
    What I want to know is, what are the options for me going to Uni?
    I am willing to do foundation courses. My main interests in courses would be computing/IT/programming related. I saw a g401 course at Goldsmiths which included year 0.
    Foundation courses are an option. You could also look into taking an Access to Higher Education course.

    Obviously things have changed and I am asking if anyone can help me out, I would want to go to uni after completing this apprenticeship(apparantly worth 2 a levels) but would my situation be at all viable?
    I'll leave someone else to answer - how apprenticeships and university fit together isn't my strong point. Common sense would suggest than an IT apprenticeship could lead to an IT/computer related degree.

    When would I start to apply on UCAS for a 2013 course also. And how do I sort out finance.
    You can start filling in the application now (you'd want Apply 2013) and send it off from mid-September. Student finance is applied for online via this website; I believe that would start in January 2013 (it's been a while since I made my original student finance application and not just renewed it!)
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    Your apprenticeship will probably help but sorry,your grades are very low.
    There are many universities which offer all sorts of interesting computing courses and aren't as picky as some.
    Brunel- Computer Science
    - Info Sys,Computing and Maths (with foundation year)
    Coventry- Computing
    - Computer Hardware and Software Engineering
    Edge Hill- Computing (System and Software)
    University of Highlands and Islands- Computing (Software Development) 2 year course
    Hull- CS with foundation year
    Kingston- Software Engineering with foundation year
    However this is just a short list. You can always search on UCAS for more,but I've found these quite suitable for your situation.
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    @TheSownRose

    Thanks a lot for the reply. What is the difference between access to higher education and a foundation year?

    @Atena369
    I know, thanks for the help.
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    Firstly, you need to know all your grades. Only then can you really come up with a plan as to what to do. Ignore anyone discouraging who says they are low blah blah blah - that isn't helpful.

    After you know where you stand qualifications-wise, have a look through UCAS and see what kinds of courses would accept the qualifications you have. If you see a course that you love the look of but it isn't clear whether or not they would consider you, get in touch with the admissions tutor. They will be able to advise you further and let you know whether or not it is worth an application anyway! (Especially given you have subsequent experience in the area you are looking at.)

    Good luck
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    (Original post by S7eve)
    @TheSownRose

    Thanks a lot for the reply. What is the difference between access to higher education and a foundation year?
    Not a whole lot - they're both aimed at getting people qualified and ready for university. Foundation years tend to be at universities, whereas Access courses are at colleges. Access courses are cheaper I believe but don't quote me on it; however, I think you get some student finance for foundation years but not Access courses (again, I wouldn't swear to it.) In general, people taking Access courses didn't stay on to do A-levels and they tend to be a bit older, whereas foundation years are more for people who got A-levels but not in the right subjects or didn't get good enough grades. However, they aren't hard and fast rules. There's more information about Access courses here.

    Access courses aren't applied for on UCAS, so you could apply for courses with a foundation year on UCAS and then also apply for Access courses as a back-up.
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    (Original post by georgia)
    Firstly, you need to know all your grades. Only then can you really come up with a plan as to what to do. Ignore anyone discouraging who says they are low blah blah blah - that isn't helpful.

    After you know where you stand qualifications-wise, have a look through UCAS and see what kinds of courses would accept the qualifications you have. If you see a course that you love the look of but it isn't clear whether or not they would consider you, get in touch with the admissions tutor. They will be able to advise you further and let you know whether or not it is worth an application anyway! (Especially given you have subsequent experience in the area you are looking at.)

    Good luck
    Thanks! yeah I am working on it at the moment. Due to my past self being a disorganised pleb I'm not to sure where I'm gonna find them. Will probably ask my previous college/school if they keep records. Yeah will do, got plenty of time, and I'm full time employed so not wasting time or anything.


    @TheSownRose

    Ahhh okay, I'll probably look into foundation, sounds better to me and I'm only 19 aha. Thanks!!
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    (Original post by S7eve)
    Thanks! yeah I am working on it at the moment. Due to my past self being a disorganised pleb I'm not to sure where I'm gonna find them. Will probably ask my previous college/school if they keep records. Yeah will do, got plenty of time, and I'm full time employed so not wasting time or anything.
    Ideeeally you will also need your exam certificates. Allegedly you need them to enrol at university, although I have enrolled at two different ones and was asked for them at neither... Your college should have sent them to you in the post at some point. If you don't have them, might be worth asking parent/s or whoever you were living with whilst doing A levels as they might have them.

    If you remember the exam boards, they might be good to get in touch with - although I'm not sure how much information they keep year on year or how much they can actually help!
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    So I got in contact with alton college and have received all my A level results and other things. I have also asked for my GCSE results and think my parents probably have the certificates.

    GCE A2 Biology : D
    AS Biology: B
    AS Computing: C
    KS-1IP/09
    KS Yr1 Lvl 3 IT Proxy Only Pass
    MAS-D/09 GCE AS Mathematics Decision: U
    MTS/09 GCE AS Music Technology: E

    As I said, most of my GCSE's are A's and B's. Maths being A or A*, english being B.

    I will also have NVQ IT Professional apparently worth 2 A levels and a years experience working as a technical engineer. and I will be doing COMPTIA N+ award exam in august as part of my current job.

    Grade 5 Saxophone also but I'm not sure if that counts for anything.



    Does anyone think that this would be good for lets say a foundation year in computer science at goldsmiths or other similar quality uni?
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    If I was you, I was stick out as an IT apprentice. Yes, the moneys **** and i'm guessing you're feeling pretty crap about it - but at least it is in a relevant field.

    Once you have completed this apprenticeship, you will be in a position to fund yourself through course as you work. Therefore saving you money by not paying university tuition but still furthering yourself and your career opportunities.
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    I reckon you might be better off waiting and applying as a mature student with relevant experience. Often entry requirements are waived or much more flexible once you are 21+.

    Still, I think the only way you can know for sure is to get in touch with admissions tutors.

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