(Original post by literatureloversarah92)
Hi I was just wondering whether I would be eligiable for CSAS or not.....
In year 9 I developed a serious eating disorder, meaning I missed alot of time off school for doctors sessions etc, then in year 10 (at the start of my GCSE course) my illness got worse and I was admitted into hospital for 6 months, where I did bearly any work! when I came out I relaspsed and missed the next few months. I only really started back at school for year 11, so only studied my GCSE's for one year having to self teach what I had missed. Because of this my GCSE grades were slightly lower (2A*'s 2A's and 5B's). I do strongly feel that dealing with this illness has hindered my performance, would I qualify?
Thank you for your help
Hello, thought I'd add my two cents
I've been in a similar situation to you. I've suffered with anorexia since I was 13 and was hospitalised for 6 months during Year 10. I had constant therapy/medical appointments throughout Year 11 and relapsed during the exam period. I managed to come out with 10 A*s and an A at GCSE. Then, in year12 during my AS exams, I relapsed pretty badly. I was hospitalised for another 4 months last year and have since been home, but still suffer from depression and am underweight. I managed 4 As at AS and applied to Cambridge, getting an offer.
My personal advice would be to not apply via CSAS. When I was going through the whole UCAS process, I was in hospital at the time so doing everything alone, but my teachers did suggest I think about applying that way. I talked it over with family, friends and my treatment team and decided to simply add to the disability part of the UCAS form that I had been having treatment for 4 years (mental health problems come under that heading). I definitely think it was the right thing to do. It is obviously completely up to you, but I really encourage you to think about it. My personal reasons for applying normally were that a) I wanted to get in on my own personal merit b) I didn't want it to come across as a weakness in my application and c) I didn't need to make excuses for my grades.
As for yourself, I don't think you need to either! Your GCSEs really aren't bad, I have friends with offers who had no A*s at all. As long as you can work hard for your AS and A Levels, you shouldn't have a disadvantage. Also, I know CSAS isn't supposed to do this, but I think I may have been less likely to get a place had I applied with it. Competition was so
tough at the college i applied to for my subject, and as I got pooled, I think if I had drawn attention to my illness I may have appeared a weaker candidate - especially in the pool. I don't know, this is purely speculation of course, but thats just how I see it. On the other hand, if you really feel you underperformed hugely, perhaps it will help you out. I'd say just think it over, and really weigh up the pros and cons.
Good luck! And remember, your health is more important that anything else