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    (Original post by Lizia)
    And the system just wouldn't work as a time scale. Even if people had their marks back by the end of July, that now only leaves five months for people to make their application, the unis to sort them out and call people for interviews, then consider each applicant, then make offers, and the students choose which offer to take. Under the current scale, the unis have at least three months to consider applicants.
    I accept your other points, but from this paragraph I don't really know if you understood it...

    People could sort their application apart from the final uni choices out far in advance, meaning they only really need to add those before sending it off - give a week, so that people with surprising results can get round to some more open days. They'll actually rank the unis before sending the application off, so students won't need to choose which offer to take - they'll have already chosen that.

    The applications go off in waves, so they'll got to all first choices first, second choices second, etc. That means unis will only receive the applications from students that have put them in that particular position - so only unis that have been put as first choice, then second, then third... Under these circumstances, each uni would have a month to consider and interview the applicants, which would be more than sufficient for a decreased number of applicants.
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    (Original post by TheSownRose)
    I accept your other points, but from this paragraph I don't really know if you understood it...

    People could sort their application apart from the final uni choices out far in advance, meaning they only really need to add those before sending it off - give a week, so that people with surprising results can get round to some more open days. They'll actually rank the unis before sending the application off, so students won't need to choose which offer to take - they'll have already chosen that.

    The applications go off in waves, so they'll got to all first choices first, second choices second, etc. That means unis will only receive the applications from students that have put them in that particular position - so only unis that have been put as first choice, then second, then third... Under these circumstances, each uni would have a month to consider and interview the applicants, which would be more than sufficient for a decreased number of applicants.

    That just seems like a ridiculousy, unnecessarily complicated way of doing things. And it wouldn't make things any easier for most students or universities. It just means that there'd be a mad rush of applications for lower universities in December, and the risk of people missing out on places altogether. Unless there are specific personal factors involved, if people are asked to pick one uni at a time, people's first choice will always be the one that's most competitive or wants the highest grades. No one will apply to Wolverhampton as first choice, if they think there's a chance they'll get into Surrey. But no one will apply to Surrey as first choice, if they think they might get into Oxford. So the applications aren't going to be spread out, like you think. It just means that each university will have a month of being super busy, and spend the rest of their time twiddling their thumbs.

    It's also completely ridiculous from a logistics point of view. If you apply for Oxbridge in the first month and get rejected, in the second month the you'll probably find that all the other top 10 unis have filled their places with people who applied in the first month. Which means that a student with AAAA could end up in a uni ranked around 30th, whereas before they would have gone to one ranked 8th. Which is exactly the reason that UCAS choices don't rank universities in order of preference at the moment: because students should be judged on their merits rather than risk being rejected by Durham for putting Bristol above them or whatever. If the course requires AAA-ABB, then the university are going to accept someone in Month One who got ABB who clearly really wants to be at the university, than accept someone who is only one grade better and sees them as a back up.

    It also completely limits students choice. When I applied for UCAS, I had no idea who my 'First Choice' were. And if I had to apply to them one by one, I wouldn't have been happy. Most students don't have all five choices ranked in order when they apply, they maybe have one they like a lot and the rest they're fairly keen on. Various factors make a difference to people's decisions, not just grades.

    And for places which interview, it makes it impossible. UCL, Oxford and Cambridge interview for everything. If people are going to apply to Oxford and Cambridge, it will always be their first choice. So Oxford and Cambridge are expected to read every application they get, narrow down the candidates, perform all the interviews and make decisions based on the interviews in one month. It just isn't feasible.
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    (Original post by TheSownRose)
    I accept your other points, but from this paragraph I don't really know if you understood it...

    People could sort their application apart from the final uni choices out far in advance, meaning they only really need to add those before sending it off - give a week, so that people with surprising results can get round to some more open days. They'll actually rank the unis before sending the application off, so students won't need to choose which offer to take - they'll have already chosen that.

    The applications go off in waves, so they'll got to all first choices first, second choices second, etc. That means unis will only receive the applications from students that have put them in that particular position - so only unis that have been put as first choice, then second, then third... Under these circumstances, each uni would have a month to consider and interview the applicants, which would be more than sufficient for a decreased number of applicants.
    As I said in my first post in this thread, which seems to have been ignored, applying in waves and not giving students much time to send off their application would cause real a real problem for a lot of people.

    How many students get different grades to what they were predicted? Either those who were predicted poor results and worked their ass of to over achieve, or those who were predicted very good grades but failed to deliver. Anybody that didn't get grades very similar to what they were expecting would have their application completely screwed up by your system as all of their university choices would have been based around universities that would take them with the grades they were expecting, and then they would be left with a very short space of time to research new universities & courses for their actual grades.
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    Plenty of countries have admissions systems based on actual grades.
    Based on these, I would say:
    1) There is no need to limit the application time to one week.
    2) There is no need for "waves".
    3) There is no need to move the start of term to January.

    There would however be a need to get your grades sooner - July, like you suggested, would do. Unis could then make decisions from July to September. That is plenty of time, even for courses that require an interview. (Currently, Oxbridge, who probably interview the highest percentage of applicants of all universities, manage to do all interviews within one to two weeks. Other universities have more applicants but don't interview nearly as many of them.)
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    (Original post by mackemforever)
    Anybody that didn't get grades very similar to what they were expecting would have their application completely screwed up by your system as all of their university choices would have been based around universities that would take them with the grades they were expecting, and then they would be left with a very short space of time to research new universities & courses for their actual grades.
    That is not a good argument:

    People who get better grades than predicted should have the option to upgrade their universities if they so wish. I think they have this option currently but it is limited to two weeks after Results - no better than under the proposed system by OP - and limited by the choice of uni since by the time they get their grades, most good unis are full - so worse than under the proposed system. If they do not wish to apply to better unis, nothing in the proposed system is stopping them from applying to the universities they researched.

    People who get worse grades than they were predicted will currently either fail to get into their choices and then anyway have a very short time to make new choices in Clearing - no better than under the proposed system by OP - or get into their choices although they don't really deserve it - worse (for the universities who missed out on better applicants) than under the proposed system.

    The only people for whom the current system is better are those who fail to get the grades but are still let in. I don't see why a general university applications system should cater specifically for these people.
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    (Original post by llys)
    There would however be a need to get your grades sooner - July, like you suggested, would do. Unis could then make decisions from July to September. That is plenty of time, even for courses that require an interview. (Currently, Oxbridge, who probably interview the highest percentage of applicants of all universities, manage to do all interviews within one to two weeks. Other universities have more applicants but don't interview nearly as many of them.)

    But how does it benefit anyone to change the system to what you're suggesting? I think that's the main point here- you're completely reshuffling the system, without there being any clear benefit to anyone. Sure, it might work, but what makes it any better than the current system? You're putting more pressure on exam boards to mark faster (possibly leading to more mistakes), universities to interview and select candidates faster (giving them less time to consider and make the best choice), and students to choose a university fast (leading to people making the wrong decision because of the urgency to choose something). Yet I can't see any benefits to doing this.


    I could see a benefit for the students if grades were the only thing which determined whether you got a place, since then you could do a lot of thinking over the academic year as to which uni you'd choose once you got your results. But that isn't the case, since a student who meets the entrance criteria grades wise won't necessarily get into a university. So there's no real benefit to having the grades when you apply, other than a few really deluded people not applying to the top unis with CCC, which I doubt is a massive problem anyway.

    It also causes a lot of problems for the universities when offering places. At the moment, they give more offers than there are places, knowing that quite a few people will fail to make the grade, and others will choose to go to other universities instead. By May, they know roughly how many sstudents they can expect, and if it's too many or not enough then they can start sorting out solutions to that problem. Under your current system, assuming that it takes around a month to process an application and get an answer, and the student takes a week to then choose a final university to accept, they won't know until three weeks before term begins. Which leads to all kinds of problems if they have too many students, and not enough time to recruit via clearing if they have too few. And on top of that, housing for 5,000 students then has to be sorted in those three weeks.
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    (Original post by Lizia)
    But how does it benefit anyone to change the system to what you're suggesting? I think that's the main point here- you're completely reshuffling the system, without there being any clear benefit to anyone. Sure, it might work, but what makes it any better than the current system?
    I'm not the OP. But I will answer this: it does no harm to any pupil, and the benefit is that it is more fair, because now admissions are based on actual grades, rather than predicted grades. This is particularly important for those pupils who are most likely to be predicted grades below their actual ability, which (I think but stand ready to be corrected) affects disproportionately state-school pupils, and there, disproportionately working class and ethnic minority pupils.

    (Original post by Lizia)
    It also causes a lot of problems for the universities when offering places. At the moment, they give more offers than there are places, knowing that quite a few people will fail to make the grade, and others will choose to go to other universities instead. By May, they know roughly how many sstudents they can expect, and if it's too many or not enough then they can start sorting out solutions to that problem. Under your current system, assuming that it takes around a month to process an application and get an answer, and the student takes a week to then choose a final university to accept, they won't know until three weeks before term begins. Which leads to all kinds of problems if they have too many students, and not enough time to recruit via clearing if they have too few. And on top of that, housing for 5,000 students then has to be sorted in those three weeks.
    Yet none of this is a problem in a lot of other European countries which do have admissions systems based on actual grades.
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    (Original post by llys)
    I'm not the OP. But I will answer this: it does no harm to any pupil, and the benefit is that it is more fair, because now admissions are based on actual grades, rather than predicted grades. This is particularly important for those pupils who are most likely to be predicted grades below their actual ability, which (I think but stand ready to be corrected) affects disproportionately state-school pupils, and there, disproportionately working class and ethnic minority pupils.
    Well you should answer this, because you're the person I quoted and whose points I challenged :confused: But anyway- how does it not do harm to the pupil? If you only have a two month period between receiving results and starting university, how is that not a lot more stressful for the students? It will take the universities around a month to make a decision. Meaning a student has only a month to choose between their offers, accept a place and apply for accommodation and buy books etc. You can't just measure 'harm' on an academic scale, going to university is stressful under the current system, why make it even worse?

    Unless you can back your assertions about class and ethnicity with some proof, then I'm not even going to address them, since for all I know they're not even vaguely true. If anything, most students are overpredicted with grades, not vice versa.


    Yet none of this is a problem in a lot of other European countries which do have admissions systems based on actual grades.
    Well from the European eduation systems I have experience of (Germany, France, Italy), most of them don't require any set grades to get in. Passing the A-level equivalent is enough to get in, the actual mark is irrelevant. A lot of European countries also take as many students as they possibly can, to the extent that in France I've seen students sitting on the floor because the university has crammed as many people as they can get away with on the course.

    Considering that the UK awards places at institutions based on their grades (not simply passing) and they have strict limits on how many people they can admit, the system for European countries are irrelevant. And I definitely don't think we should immitate them: most European universities are a mixture of abilities that make it difficult to learn (and lead to a very high drop out rate) and a ridiculous number of students making it difficult to concentrate.

    So unless you plan to change the system even further and state that simply getting a pass in each A-level is enough to get into any university in the country, then European admissions systems are so far from being comparable to the UK as to be completely irrelevant.
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    (Original post by Lizia)
    the student takes a week to then choose a final university to accept, they won't know until three weeks before term begins.
    I really think you're missing a crucial point here - the student has already accepted it if they get a positive response. There's no waiting around, the uni would know if they have 300 places and make 120 offers in wave one, eighty in wave two, fifty in wave three, thirty in wave four and twenty in wave five that they have 300 offer holders out there.
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    (Original post by TheSownRose)
    I really think you're missing a crucial point here - the student has already accepted it if they get a positive response. There's no waiting around, the uni would know if they have 300 places and make 120 offers in wave one, eighty in wave two, fifty in wave three, thirty in wave four and twenty in wave five that they have 300 offer holders out there.
    You've quoted me when I was responding to someone different, proposing a different scenario. Please read responses properly before quoting. The person I was responding to was proposing a system without your 'cycles of application'.

    I haven't missed the point of your system, but I think you're being hopelessly naive. What university is going to hold places open for each cycle? Most good universities in the country are oversubscribed already. The top 30 or so universities could fill up with people with the right grades who apply in the first cycle. The top 50 would probably be full by the second cycle. So why would these universities hold places open for later cycles, when they know that the people applying in cycles 3,4 and 5 are choosing them only because they couldn't get in anywhere else? And as I said- basically every top 10 university would be able to fill themselves with acceptable applicants in the first cycle. Which means people rejected from Oxbridge as their first choice, will then have to settle for a vastly lower university than that which they would get under the current system.


    To give you an example: me. My first choice was Bristol, second choice Durham. I was rejected from both, despite my predictions vastly exceeding their necessary grades (and under the current system they make more offers than they have places, in your system they'd literally just be offering the number of places, increasing the chances of my rejection). So under your system, I'd have applied to Bristol and been rejected. So I'd have turned to Durham- oh, they've filled all their places in the first cycle! And so has every university of a similar standard. So I'm left at a university well below my capabilities, simply because Bristol didn't like my personal statement and rejected me, while every other good university accepted students who had the grades AND wanted to be there as first choice. Under the current system, I was rejected from Bristol and Durham, but got offers from UCL and Manchester. I ended up at UCL. Can you not see the vast difference in performance between the current system and your proposal? Under the current system, I'm at UCL. Under your system, I'd be at a uni ranked lower than 30.

    If you want to change the system, you'd need a hybrid of your scenario and Llys. Get rid of the silly 'application cycles' idea, but keep the six months between getting results and starting uni. But as I pointed out, the six months between sixth form and uni still has some pretty major flaws in the plan, so really it's not worth changing it.
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    Currently, Oxbridge applications and admissions take from October 15 to end of December/beginning of January = 2.5 months at most. If Oxbridge can manage that, why would it be too difficult for other universities, where in general a much much lower percentage of students are interviewed?

    I also don't buy the "additional stress for students" argument. I did apply under such a system (Germany) and did not find it at all stressful, nor did my classmates. In fact, since exams are over you have plenty of time to have fun looking at universities and courses. I think pupils would be far more stressed if they had to prepare their university application at the same time as preparing for exams.

    (Original post by Lizia)
    Unless you can back your assertions about class and ethnicity with some proof, then I'm not even going to address them, since for all I know they're not even vaguely true. If anything, most students are overpredicted with grades, not vice versa.
    There are a few papers suggesting bias with respect to class or ethnicity (Hayward et al. 2005, Shiner, M and Modood, T (2002)), but there are also others suggesting that there is no discernable bias (Snell et al. 2008). UCAS has commissioned systematic analysis of predicted vs actual grades over the last five years but I cannot find the results of that. So there indeed may not be a bias in predicted grades with respect to class.

    However, Snell et al. 2008 found that pupils who are predicted lower grades systematically over-perform, whilst pupils who are predicted higher grades systematically under-perform. Only 36.5% of predictions are actually correct (according to Snell), so an admissions system based on predicted grades is fundamentally flawed.

    BTW (not in response to you in particular), they say there that "plans are in hand to change the current HE applications process and introduce a ‘trading-up’ window (2008/9) as a prelude to a switch to a post-qualifications application (PQA) process (2012)", so we might see a post-grade admissions system in place quite soon. However not sure if that's still the plan under the current government.

    Well from the European eduation systems I have experience of (Germany, France, Italy), most of them don't require any set grades to get in. Passing the A-level equivalent is enough to get in, the actual mark is irrelevant.
    I cannot speak for France, but many degrees in Germany have an "NC" (Numerus clausus) which means that effectively pupils need to have certain grades to be able to get in. The cut-off varies a bit every year depending on the strength of applicants. Since applicants know the previous year's cutoff, they can target their applications to make sure they get at least one offer. Universities sort applications by their criteria, and make as many offers as they have places, as well as "waiting list" offers. Applicants on the waiting list may receive a place if students that do have an offer don't take it.

    I think it's simple and effective. BTW, applicants can apply for accomodation at the same time as they apply for a place to study, so if they accept an offer, accomodation will be sorted out automatically.
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    (Original post by Lizia)
    You've quoted me when I was responding to someone different, proposing a different scenario. Please read responses properly before quoting. The person I was responding to was proposing a system without your 'cycles of application'.

    I haven't missed the point of your system, but I think you're being hopelessly naive. What university is going to hold places open for each cycle? Most good universities in the country are oversubscribed already. The top 30 or so universities could fill up with people with the right grades who apply in the first cycle. The top 50 would probably be full by the second cycle. So why would these universities hold places open for later cycles, when they know that the people applying in cycles 3,4 and 5 are choosing them only because they couldn't get in anywhere else? And as I said- basically every top 10 university would be able to fill themselves with acceptable applicants in the first cycle. Which means people rejected from Oxbridge as their first choice, will then have to settle for a vastly lower university than that which they would get under the current system.


    To give you an example: me. My first choice was Bristol, second choice Durham. I was rejected from both, despite my predictions vastly exceeding their necessary grades (and under the current system they make more offers than they have places, in your system they'd literally just be offering the number of places, increasing the chances of my rejection). So under your system, I'd have applied to Bristol and been rejected. So I'd have turned to Durham- oh, they've filled all their places in the first cycle! And so has every university of a similar standard. So I'm left at a university well below my capabilities, simply because Bristol didn't like my personal statement and rejected me, while every other good university accepted students who had the grades AND wanted to be there as first choice. Under the current system, I was rejected from Bristol and Durham, but got offers from UCL and Manchester. I ended up at UCL. Can you not see the vast difference in performance between the current system and your proposal? Under the current system, I'm at UCL. Under your system, I'd be at a uni ranked lower than 30.

    If you want to change the system, you'd need a hybrid of your scenario and Llys. Get rid of the silly 'application cycles' idea, but keep the six months between getting results and starting uni. But as I pointed out, the six months between sixth form and uni still has some pretty major flaws in the plan, so really it's not worth changing it.
    You could also combat it by enforcing restrictions on what percentage you can take from each wave ... but then, never really been a fan of government meddling in education. So ok, get rid of the applications cycle and the only huge problem you're left with in DarkWhite's one where unis might feel tempted to accept only based on grades, which hopefully we could avoid by some system that I'm still thinking on.

    The six month gap problem can be corrected - like I said somewhere else, introduce more voluntary schemes like building restoration, people would have six months in which to pursue private interests... People can always find things to do.
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    (Original post by llys)
    Currently, Oxbridge applications and admissions take from October 15 to end of December/beginning of January = 2.5 months at most. If Oxbridge can manage that, why would it be too difficult for other universities, where in general a much much lower percentage of students are interviewed
    But Oxbridge have a much lower number of applications in the first place. Oxford had just over 17,776 applications in January 2010. UCL had just over 33,000. Bristol had 37,000. Manchester had 50,000. (Source)Can you see why this process in two months would be impossible? Actually, it would be more like a month they're expected to make this decision in, considering you have to let the students know and sort things like housing out. Even if places like Manchester and Bristol don't interview, they still have 50,000 applications to read and make a decision on in two months?! That's over 1500 a day! And UCL interview every applicant from the UK, despite having twice as many as Oxford. Even if UCL rejected half their students without an interview, they'd still have to interview 500 students every day for a month! And that isn't even factoring in the time to read the applications to decide who to interview and who not. It just isn't feasible.

    I also don't buy the "additional stress for students" argument. I did apply under such a system (Germany) and did not find it at all stressful, nor did my classmates. In fact, since exams are over you have plenty of time to have fun looking at universities and courses. I think pupils would be far more stressed if they had to prepare their university application at the same time as preparing for exams.
    But students in the UK don't apply at the same time as preparing for exams. Their applications are finished by January at the latest, and nearly every student have answers from all five universities by March. Exams then begin in late May/June. Considering applications to UK unis tend to be a bit hit and miss- even an applicant who seems perfect can be rejected for no apparent reason- I don't see how it can be considered less stressful to spend two months not knowing anything than to know you just have to make your grades and everything's fine.


    However, Snell et al. 2008 found that pupils who are predicted lower grades systematically over-perform, whilst pupils who are predicted higher grades systematically under-perform. Only 36.5% of predictions are actually correct, so an admissions system based on predicted grades is fundamentally flawed.
    Your link doesn't work, could you post it again? I'm interested ton read it. But I think the use of percentages here is flawed- you can still get a good idea of the level of a candidate using predicted grades, even if they don't turn out to be completely precise. I don't think there are that many people capable of ABB being predicted CCC. Most universities have quite a wide criteria (usually something like AAA to ABB) so even if the predictions aren't spot on, then they're good enough to work with.


    I cannot speak for France, but many degrees in Germany have an "NC" (Numerus clausus) which means that effectively pupils need to have certain grades to be able to get in. The cut-off varies a bit every year depending on the strength of applicants.
    Surely that's worse than our current UK system though? At least in the UK students know what grades they need to get, to get into a certain university. Under the system you mention here, they have no idea. And Germany is just one example. As I mentioned, I can think of at least two other post-results systems which lead to chaos for students, both in practical concerns like classroom sizes and seating abilities, and academic concerns.
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    (Original post by TheSownRose)
    You could also combat it by enforcing restrictions on what percentage you can take from each wave ... but then, never really been a fan of government meddling in education. So ok, get rid of the applications cycle and the only huge problem you're left with in DarkWhite's one where unis might feel tempted to accept only based on grades, which hopefully we could avoid by some system that I'm still thinking on.

    The six month gap problem can be corrected - like I said somewhere else, introduce more voluntary schemes like building restoration, people would have six months in which to pursue private interests... People can always find things to do.
    I'd like to see you get universities to agree to hold places open for students who see them solely as a back up. They would never agree to it.

    No, people can't always find things to do. You'd just get a load of students sitting on their arses for six months doing nothing. I took a gap year before uni. The first six months were structured, the last six months were to get a job. I couldn't find a job, I couldn't afford to pursue any serious private interests, and I sure as hell wouldn't have done a 'building restoration volunteer program'. You can't just force people into doing things they don't want to do for six months, just because you can't make your proposed education system workable.

    You need to make a proposal and then it can be debated. There's no point discussing it now when people point out flaws in your plan and you simply say "that will be worked out later". I don't really see the point in wasting my time debating this anymore with you, until you come up with a more feasible plan :dontknow:
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    (Original post by Lizia)
    I'd like to see you get universities to agree to hold places open for students who see them solely as a back up. They would never agree to it.

    No, people can't always find things to do. You'd just get a load of students sitting on their arses for six months doing nothing. I took a gap year before uni. The first six months were structured, the last six months were to get a job. I couldn't find a job, I couldn't afford to pursue any serious private interests, and I sure as hell wouldn't have done a 'building restoration volunteer program'. You can't just force people into doing things they don't want to do for six months, just because you can't make your proposed education system workable.

    You need to make a proposal and then it can be debated. There's no point discussing it now when people point out flaws in your plan and you simply say "that will be worked out later". I don't really see the point in wasting my time debating this anymore with you, until you come up with a more feasible plan :dontknow:
    Not forcing people to do anything - they can sit around on their arse for six months, I wouldn't care. Just saying that I would also propose an increase in activities like volunteer projects for people to get involved with alongside changing the application system.

    I always said the exact plan wasn't ironed out, that never really was the point of this thread; imagine if the question had been "Would you support a post-qualification system of university applications, assuming measures would be put in place to ensure decisions won't be rushed and students wouldn't have a month or two to make uni plans?"
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    Here's the link again: link
    Sorry if it doesn't work directly; .pdf files don't open directly in my browser so I had to copy the link from the google page. You could also google "Teacher’s Perceptions and A-Level Performance: Is There any Evidence of Systematic Bias?"

    I concede the points about numbers for universities that interview a lot of applicants. However it may be a bit less dramatic than it seems because applications may actually be more targeted (see below).

    (Original post by Lizia)
    Exams then begin in late May/June. Considering applications to UK unis tend to be a bit hit and miss- even an applicant who seems perfect can be rejected for no apparent reason- I don't see how it can be considered less stressful to spend two months not knowing anything than to know you just have to make your grades and everything's fine.

    Surely that's worse than our current UK system though? At least in the UK students know what grades they need to get, to get into a certain university. Under the system you mention here, they have no idea.
    No, it is actually quite good. Since applicants know the previous year's cutoff, they can target their applications to universities / courses where they are likely to be above the cutoff and therefore to get at least one offer for sure. There are also waiting lists which however are a bit complicated to explain.

    It does mean however that the system is a bit more based on grades than in the UK, since it is difficult or more time-consuming to rate PS / reference / grades / admissions tests / interview etc and then form a score for applicants based on all these factors rather than just grades.
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    Sounds alright to me
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    I like the idea in theory, but what I don't like is the fact that there would be an awfully long time (~8 months!) during which students hoping to go to university wouldn't have anything to do.. plus, I remember the stress I went through before starting uni, and I wouldn't really want that to be straight after Christmas- I'd stress myself to death over it!

    But in theory I do think that applying when you already know which universitys are within reach is a good idea.
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    (Original post by Gemma :)!)
    I like the idea in theory, but what I don't like is the fact that there would be an awfully long time (~8 months!) during which students hoping to go to university wouldn't have anything to do.. plus, I remember the stress I went through before starting uni, and I wouldn't really want that to be straight after Christmas- I'd stress myself to death over it!

    But in theory I do think that applying when you already know which universitys are within reach is a good idea.
    Like I've said somewhere, people with jobs could continue them, an increase in volunteer programmes could accompany this, and people can pursue their own private interests.

    It wouldn't necessarily have to be right after Christmas, in much the same way that unis officially start in September now, but a lot are closer or in October - January would be the official time, but it could actually be January heading towards February.
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    What about remarks? How are exam boards meant to remark exams in under a week?
    And then students are expected to choose their universities immediately afterwards, perhaps with only a day left until the deadline?
 
 
 
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