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    (Original post by longking)
    I'M taking philosophy and ethics, sociology psychology and biology

    are we allowed to PM on this site ?
    No idea only just started to use the site
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    Hello

    I'm in a pretty similer position as you and it worries me too. I got 3A* 2A 4B and a Distinction*. Although I have never been through the appilcation process I have done some snooping around and it seems to me that Cambridge care more about your predicted grades and UMS score as well as interview to get a well rounded view of the candidate; GCSEs are of little concern in the grand scheme of things. However, having said that a lot of successful applicants are running with 8+ A* under their belt. GCSEs are also proof of early academic achievement and hardwork. But tbh, you can still prove that as long as everything else is spot on; your GCSEs won't be your Achilles' Heel.

    Alternativeley, I was planning on having a gap-year in which I would take up a few more extra GCSEs in other interests privately and would try to get a few more A*. As well as this, taking up extra-curriculum qualifications e.g Grade 8 in piano could play an advantage. It could also be done with AS/A levels as well but will cost extra naturally (may need a two-year gap for that). That's just an idea though and im unsure whether that would actually work improving someone's prospects, plus it would cost a fair deal and would mean having to take a year or 2 out. I plan to at least apply (if my grades are good enough haha) and see how fair I get before thinking about that though since it's a big commitment.

    Don't take my word for this since i've been looking at websites and blogs etc and we know how reliable they are haha
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    (Original post by realistpessimist)
    All in all my GCSE results were somewhat average in many senses of the word due to complicated circumstances I only received 1 A, 11B's and a merit. These grades make me worried on any chances of gaining entrance to Cambridge so would if theoretically I did outstanding in my A-levels and of course others activities to prove my worth would my GCSE grades hurt my chances that badly? If so is there anything I can do- obviously my new school thinks I can achieve this by allowing me to take 5 A-Levels.
    So you are taking Sociology, politics, economics, history and classical civilisations, for Law.

    It is a shame that of your five subjects three of them are so called list B
    http://www.trin.cam.ac.uk/admissions...l-combinations.

    LIST B A-levels of More Limited Suitability
    Government & Politics (Arts)
    Sociology (Arts)
    Law (Land Economy & Law)

    Is it impossible for you to do English or Maths or Geography etc instead ?

    For humanities subjects 4 AS & 3 A2 at high grade/UMS are massively preferred over five at lower attainment. In sciences five AS & 4-5A2 was much more common because the workload of double maths was not as great and more science study was an advantage.
    With the demise of AS I think very few humanities students will be offering five subjects.

    For Law GCSE attainment is important, they like to see good performance in English and the analytical logic skills of science are also relevant. The typical student has 7-10A*.

    However Cambridge do have a well developed extenuating circumstances appraisal system & to stand any chance you will need to go down this route.
    http://www.undergraduate.study.cam.a...umstances-form

    The ECF is for those who have suffered significant disruption to schooling or illness etc. They also flag your attainment in terms of context-background and school. As you say your current school must have a reason for believing in you. Just don't take the risk of over-stretching yourself and then having nothing concrete to show off your ability.
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    They tend to look at your A-levels more than your GCSEs
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    (Original post by ProperMecha)
    Hello

    I'm in a pretty similer position as you and it worries me too. I got 3A* 2A 4B and a Distinction*. Although I have never been through the appilcation process I have done some snooping around and it seems to me that Cambridge care more about your predicted grades and UMS score as well as interview to get a well rounded view of the candidate; GCSEs are of little concern in the grand scheme of things. However, having said that a lot of successful applicants are running with 8+ A* under their belt. GCSEs are also proof of early academic achievement and hardwork. But tbh, you can still prove that as long as everything else is spot on; your GCSEs won't be your Achilles' Heel.

    Alternativeley, I was planning on having a gap-year in which I would take up a few more extra GCSEs in other interests privately and would try to get a few more A*. As well as this, taking up extra-curriculum qualifications e.g Grade 8 in piano could play an advantage. It could also be done with AS/A levels as well but will cost extra naturally (may need a two-year gap for that). That's just an idea though and im unsure whether that would actually work improving someone's prospects, plus it would cost a fair deal and would mean having to take a year or 2 out. I plan to at least apply (if my grades are good enough haha) and see how fair I get before thinking about that though since it's a big commitment.

    Don't take my word for this since i've been looking at websites and blogs etc and we know how reliable they are haha
    Cambridge never used to take any notice of predicted grades as they used your AS UMS to predict your A2 perfomance and only ignored this if the reference or ECF clarified a good reason for underperformance. We don't know if GCSEs or tests will take the place of UMS but since almost all candidates are predicted a majority of A* at A level so they don't really help.
    Cambridge are not interested in sixth-formers getting A* at GCSE. It is a waste of time to do more after age 16 unless it genuinely adds to your portfolio-such as an extra language for an MML applicant.
    Grade 8 in piano counts for almost nothing at Cambridge and generally takes at least 7-10 years of playing to achieve.
    GCSEs remain important for some subjects such as Law & medicine.
    So the only thing I agree with is that if your record is poor applying post qualification is the best route if you can do it. You need 2A* for Arts & 3A* for Economics & Sciences.
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    (Original post by realistpessimist)
    Well at the moment I feel like doing 5 A-levels is actually benefiting me very well, it makes me strive to constantly do the best. I was hoping to take the law course at Cambridge.
    Not a single chance my friend I'm afraid. I hate to seem harsh and pessimistic but Cambridge Law is an incredibly competitive course and 90% of successful applicants will have at least 6A*s at GCSE, and you have none.
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    (Original post by longking)
    I want to study law or maybe philosophy or theology im indecisive.

    What about you?
    philosophy and ethics, sociology psychology and biology
    Again you have two list B subjects. Not a disaster but a disadvantage whne you are trying to compensate for low GCSE scores.

    LIST B A-levels of More Limited Suitability
    Psychology (Arts)
    Sociology (Arts)

    If you do not have extenuating circumstances a law application with poor GCSEs is a huge risk at Cambridge. If you are genuinely interested in Philosophy or Theology the entry is less competitive and your subjects are better matched.
    However Trinity remarks that for Theology:
    A desirable combination of A-levels would, however, include one or more from languages, literature, and history.
    Philosophy comments on Biology & Philosophy as being suitable among others.
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    (Original post by TheGrammarGuru)
    Not a single chance my friend I'm afraid. I hate to seem harsh and pessimistic but Cambridge Law is an incredibly competitive course and 90% of successful applicants will have at least 6A*s at GCSE, and you have none.
    What you say is true except we don't know the back story:
    "due to complicated circumstances".

    If for example the OP spent half the year in hospital, or was a carer for a parent that died, or only arrived a s a refugee with no English half way through GCSEs he may still manage.
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    (Original post by Colmans)
    Cambridge never used to take any notice of predicted grades as they used your AS UMS to predict your A2 perfomance and only ignored this if the reference or ECF clarified a good reason for underperformance. We don't know if GCSEs or tests will take the place of UMS but since almost all candidates are predicted a majority of A* at A level so they don't really help.
    Cambridge are not interested in sixth-formers getting A* at GCSE. It is a waste of time to do more after age 16 unless it genuinely adds to your portfolio-such as an extra language for an MML applicant.
    Grade 8 in piano counts for almost nothing at Cambridge and generally takes at least 7-10 years of playing to achieve.
    GCSEs remain important for some subjects such as Law & medicine.
    So the only thing I agree with is that if your record is poor applying post qualification is the best route if you can do it. You need 2A* for Arts & 3A* for Economics & Sciences.
    I say, what about Natural Physical Sciences? I got 6 A's and 5 B's for GCSE, which isn't exactly the required level. I'm doing all List A subjects: Maths Further Maths, Physics & Chemistry, and I'm doing AS exams privately so Cambridge have something to assess. The only problem is that a B was in Physics, due to lateness.

    Advice?
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    (Original post by TheGrammarGuru)
    Not a single chance my friend I'm afraid. I hate to seem harsh and pessimistic but Cambridge Law is an incredibly competitive course and 90% of successful applicants will have at least 6A*s at GCSE, and you have none.
    You say that but near all the other people that have written in response to this say that GCSE's don't actually matter all that much in comparison to other things. I think that you were very harsh in your statement as yes due to that statistic it will be hard but as you said 10% don't have 6 A*'s.
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    (Original post by Colmans)
    What you say is true except we don't know the back story:
    "due to complicated circumstances".

    If for example the OP spent half the year in hospital, or was a carer for a parent that died, or only arrived a s a refugee with no English half way through GCSEs he may still manage.
    Well actually it wasn't anything like that it was more the fact I went to an underachieving school with lacklustre teachers that didn't actually help in anyway and I had no means (money) to be able to get taught so all I had to go on was raw knowledge it was never refined.
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    (Original post by realistpessimist)
    You say that but near all the other people that have written in response to this say that GCSE's don't actually matter all that much in comparison to other things. I think that you were very harsh in your statement as yes due to that statistic it will be hard but as you said 10% don't have 6 A*'s.
    If OP does apply, without outstanding mitigating circumstances, he will get rejected for Cambridge Law. And I'd imagine all of those ten percent have at least 1 A*. Not 1 single A, and 11 B's. You'd probably struggle with most Russell Groups Law with that, let alone Cambridge. Harsh but true, I'm afraid.
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    (Original post by Colmans)
    So you are taking Sociology, politics, economics, history and classical civilisations, for Law.

    It is a shame that of your five subjects three of them are so called list B
    http://www.trin.cam.ac.uk/admissions...l-combinations.

    LIST B A-levels of More Limited Suitability
    Government & Politics (Arts)
    Sociology (Arts)
    Law (Land Economy & Law)

    Is it impossible for you to do English or Maths or Geography etc instead ?

    For humanities subjects 4 AS & 3 A2 at high grade/UMS are massively preferred over five at lower attainment. In sciences five AS & 4-5A2 was much more common because the workload of double maths was not as great and more science study was an advantage.
    With the demise of AS I think very few humanities students will be offering five subjects.

    For Law GCSE attainment is important, they like to see good performance in English and the analytical logic skills of science are also relevant. The typical student has 7-10A*.

    However Cambridge do have a well developed extenuating circumstances appraisal system & to stand any chance you will need to go down this route.
    http://www.undergraduate.study.cam.a...umstances-form

    The ECF is for those who have suffered significant disruption to schooling or illness etc. They also flag your attainment in terms of context-background and school. As you say your current school must have a reason for believing in you. Just don't take the risk of over-stretching yourself and then having nothing concrete to show off your ability.
    I think you are mistaken here i am not doing three class B subjects at all; History, Economics and classic civilisation are all A2 suitable arts A-levels, with only 2 being level B; Sociology and politics are the only 2 that are level 2, which seems to be very beneficial based on the course i want to take.

    Also referring to your point about 4 A-levels and 3 AS- it is no longer possible to do that as of the new system.
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    (Original post by TheGrammarGuru)
    If OP does apply, without outstanding mitigating circumstances, he will get rejected for Cambridge Law. And I'd imagine all of those ten percent have at least 1 A*. Not 1 single A, and 11 B's. You'd probably struggle with most Russell Groups Law with that, let alone Cambridge. Harsh but true, I'm afraid.
    Quite honestly that does not seem the case according to the evidence- it does suggest that it might be a struggle but a complete rule-out simply isn't true.
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    (Original post by Duke Glacia)
    Seriously does that look like a troll. I m actually a reapplicant and i know its not at all a big deal to get an interview. I wouldnt say i did bad in as levels. And sorry for the spelling im using the web version of tsr on mobile so prediction isnt workin.
    I've found a reapplicant! do you mind me asking why you reapplied? I did very badly in my AS levels and so while I applied for Cambridge this year I'm 99% likely to get rejected so I'm hoping to reapply next year if I get two or more A*. Also, when did you find out that you had got an interview?
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    (Original post by rgwx)
    I've found a reapplicant! do you mind me asking why you reapplied? I did very badly in my AS levels and so while I applied for Cambridge this year I'm 99% likely to get rejected so I'm hoping to reapply next year if I get two or more A*. Also, when did you find out that you had got an interview?
    Pm you buddy
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    (Original post by realistpessimist)
    I think you are mistaken here i am not doing three class B subjects at all; History, Economics and classic civilisation are all A2 suitable arts A-levels, with only 2 being level B; Sociology and politics are the only 2 that are level 2, which seems to be very beneficial based on the course i want to take.

    Also referring to your point about 4 A-levels and 3 AS- it is no longer possible to do that as of the new system.
    Yes apologies I misread my own summary!
    I did make it clear that I was referring to the old system and none of us are sure how the new will apply. There will be plenty of independent schools who will continue to sit AS in the parallel A2 courses.
    None the less you must concentrate on aiming for at least 2A* at A2. For somebody with few A* at GCSE this represents a massive improvement in performance. With out knowing what your complicated circumstances were it is impossible to know if this is achievable.


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    (Original post by Colmans)
    Yes apologies I misread my own summary!
    I did make it clear that I was referring to the old system and none of us are sure how the new will apply. There will be plenty of independent schools who will continue to sit AS in the parallel A2 courses.
    None the less you must concentrate on aiming for at least 2A* at A2. For somebody with few A* at GCSE this represents a massive improvement in performance. With out knowing what your complicated circumstances were it is impossible to know if this is achievable.


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    That is ok my friend, also I apologies I did not know you stated you were talking about the old system. my circumstances at GCSE were mainly down to a failing school with fairly bad teachers (not all their fault i know) but I come from a 'poor' background meaning I couldn't get a tutor to help me with the things I was missing out on. Since then I have moved to a prestigious grammar school however and it is making the difference.
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    (Original post by realistpessimist)
    Well actually it wasn't anything like that it was more the fact I went to an underachieving school with lacklustre teachers that didn't actually help in anyway and I had no means (money) to be able to get taught so all I had to go on was raw knowledge it was never refined.
    The evidence is that high achieving pupils from low context schools do well. It is less clear if low GCSES can be ignored. You may have to consider applying post qualification. In "the old days" ie last year AS could show that you were going to perform significantly better at A2. This is why Cambridge didn't want them abolished.


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    (Original post by Colmans)
    The evidence is that high achieving pupils from low context schools do well. It is less clear if low GCSES can be ignored. You may have to consider applying post qualification. In "the old days" ie last year AS could show that you were going to perform significantly better at A2. This is why Cambridge didn't want them abolished.


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    I still did 'reasonably' well but when i say underachieving that is a vast understatement, but that helps a lot thank you.
 
 
 
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