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    (Original post by theguru)
    Please don't try and base a country's academia on one school. :albertein:

    For the record, our advanced highers are without doubt harder than A-levels. In my adv bio class, my teacher is english and used to lecture in England. He says we are doing the equivalent of second year university work.
    Oh good, it had better make my first year easier then, make this year worth it. My friends and I were discussing the jump from Higher to Advanced Higher. They spent the whole of the beginning of higher talking about how the jump was "So big" and the workload was "so much harder", and we were agreeing that higher wasn't as bad as we expected, but that they hadn't warned us just how hard advanced higher was.
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    (Original post by Attlee_party)
    I find this unfair that they have changed the ucas system so that an A* at A2 is now worth 140 points and an A at AH is only worth 130 simply because an A* takes into account both your AS and A2 marks, but not the same for highers. Because the 2 years it takes to gain the qualification is regarded as 2 seperate subjects, even though AH is more or less a continuation of higher (albeit a lot more difficult). Before the A* was introduced the maximum you could get at A2 was 120 point with an A.
    A* as compared to an A at A level only takes the A2 year into account.
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    (Original post by Slumpy)
    A* as compared to an A at A level only takes the A2 year into account.
    Really? I was told by what i thought to be a reliable source that it took both your grade from AS and A2.

    EDIT: nope you are right. A* is for students that achieve 90%+ on A2 grade. Which begs the question why don't they do the same for advanced highers because I got an upper A in both my advanced highers but I merely get and A overall.
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    I know this is changing this year, but it irritates me that until now, English students didn't have to declare AS grades, only predicted grades, so people could do sweet f.a for AS if they wanted, but as long as they got predicted the grades they needed for A2, they could get into uni. Whereas in Scotland, we have to put down Highers since they're a seperate qualification, and the uni's can tell if we've been taking the piss. Not that everyone in England did no work for AS, but I'm just saying that some people did, and it's not exactly fair. But I believe this year people in state schools (why only state schools, the private schools should have to do it too!) have to declare their AS grades, don't they?
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    (Original post by Attlee_party)
    EDIT: nope you are right. A* is for students that achieve 90%+ on A2 grade. Which begs the question why don't they do the same for advanced highers because I got an upper A in both my advanced highers but I merely get and A overall.
    Because there is little political motivation to do so. The complaints (accurate or otherwise) about falling standards in A levels are much more persistent than such about H/AH.

    (Original post by Slumpy)
    A* as compared to an A at A level only takes the A2 year into account.
    The key part here is "compared to an A", though. To get an A* you must get 90% in A2 in addition to the requirement for an A of getting 80% across both AS and A2.
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    (Original post by TheUnbeliever)
    The key part here is "compared to an A", though. To get an A* you must get 90% in A2 in addition to the requirement for an A of getting 80% across both AS and A2.
    I did feel a little dodgy about saying that, but I thought in the context that was being discussed not mentioning everything wasn't gonna hurt:p:
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    (Original post by TheUnbeliever)
    Because there is little political motivation to do so. The complaints (accurate or otherwise) about falling standards in A levels are much more persistent than such about H/AH.
    No, it's because there is no need for it. The percentage of As awarded in Scotland is lower compared to A-levels.
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    (Original post by ENNGUF)
    No, it's because there is no need for it. The percentage of As awarded in Scotland is lower compared to A-levels.
    You start this post with 'no'. This is confusing, as none of the rest of its content contradicts my post. In fact, it could be used to support it. Please do not assume that I said something which I did not.
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    (Original post by ENNGUF)
    No, it's because there is no need for it. The percentage of As awarded in Scotland is lower compared to A-levels.
    You're also flat-out wrong. As I said above, let's compare equals: A level and Advanced Higher. I can't find the 2011 numbers for A levels, so let's use 2010. 27% of entries were awarded A* or A.[1] 28.8% of entries at Advanced Higher were awarded A.[2]

    [1] http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-11012369
    [2] http://www.sqa.org.uk/sqa/files_ccc/...sults_2010.xls
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    (Original post by Holly M Gray)
    By definition alone, they're not academics.
    Depends how you define 'academic'.

    A lot of arts subjects could be considered 'unacademic' if you think media isn't academic.

    I know media gets a lot of flak - a lot of arts subjects do - but when you actually think about it, it's not as if the subject itself is an easy one.

    Yes, some A-Levels aren't really that hard, but that doesn't mean the university course on roughly the same topic is easy.

    Psychology, for example, is a bit soft at A-Level. It isn't easy, since you do have to grasp and understand the theoretical underpinning to research and the like, as well as understand an increasing amount of biological psychology, however it's not a hard A-Level either. At university, it's a completely different subject. Same with sociology, same I'd wager, with media studies.

    Sure, there will always be the traditionally hard subjects (and I really wish I'd done History, Biology and Maths instead of Sociology, Psychology and English) but that isn't to say other subjects are unacademic.

    At least, IMO anyways.
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    (Original post by TheUnbeliever)
    You're also flat-out wrong. As I said above, let's compare equals: A level and Advanced Higher. I can't find the 2011 numbers for A levels, so let's use 2010. 27% of entries were awarded A* or A.[1] 28.8% of entries at Advanced Higher were awarded A.[2]

    [1] http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-11012369
    [2] http://www.sqa.org.uk/sqa/files_ccc/...sults_2010.xls
    Yes, but in Scotland an A is generally 70% while in England it is 80% so you should technically include Bs with the As and A*s...
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    (Original post by ENNGUF)
    Yes, but in Scotland an A is generally 70% while in England it is 80% so you should technically include Bs with the As and A*s...
    Um, no. Firstly, this isn't what you said. Secondly, difficulty is to be judged by grades, not percentages.

    Grades are what what is intended to be used to compare. Percentages for A levels don't mean what you think they do, being based on derived UMS rather than raw scores (100% UMS does not correspond to full marks in the actual paper). Even in Scotland, grade boundaries move every year to account for varying difficulty of the questions in the exam. So if there's no direct comparison between percentages in sequential years within a single educational system, there's absolutely no reason to expect one between that system and another, much more complex (in the sense that there are multiple exam boards).

    Conditional offers are based on grades for a reason. (Concession: there was a brief spate of top-tier universities demanding 90% in modules - or A1 bands - in the years immediately preceding the introduction of the A*.)
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    I have 5A's at Scottish Higher Level - Maths, English, Human Biology, Chemistry and Physics. In S6 I am taking Advanced Higher Chemistry, Biology and Higher Geography

    Unfortunately i did really badly in my UKCAT got an average of 607.5 total of 2430

    I volunteer at a local nursing home and i am getting work experience at a GP, but its after i send away by application, the same goes for work exp at a Medical Training Centre

    I am wanting to apply for Glasgow, Edinburgh, Dundee and Aberdeen. Honestly, do i have a realistic chance of getting in?
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    That's complete and utter tosh!
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    I can understand certain some claims about the Scottish system e.g. I can understand an English person doing GCSE's claiming that Standard Grades are easier as we 'only do eight'. Both systems are intence. We have highers in 5th year and Highers/AH in 6th. This argument is *******s.
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    (Original post by TheUnbeliever)
    You're also flat-out wrong. As I said above, let's compare equals: A level and Advanced Higher. I can't find the 2011 numbers for A levels, so let's use 2010. 27% of entries were awarded A* or A.[1] 28.8% of entries at Advanced Higher were awarded A.[2]

    [1] http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-11012369
    [2] http://www.sqa.org.uk/sqa/files_ccc/...sults_2010.xls
    I know this thread is months old and the people who posted may not care anymore, but I think this comparison of statistics misses some big points. Firstly, usually only the pupils who do particularly well in a subject take Advanced Highers in them (eg. there were only 4 people who took AH physics in my school last year) and I believe that the majority of people who take advanced highers will only take 1 or 2. I don't think it's common to take 3.

    I don't know how many students take 3 A-levels in England, but I'll make a guess at 50%, and we can say that approx 27% of those entries are awarded A*. If 50% of Scottish pupils took 3 Advanced Highers in Scotland, I can guarantee you that the number of entries scoring A2 or above would be far below 28%.


    ETA: Having read the above discussion in a little more detail, I realise that my above points are irrelevant to the debate and that I had misinterpreted what TheUnbeliever was saying.
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    (Original post by Julii92)
    I know this thread is months old and the people who posted may not care anymore, but I think this comparison of statistics misses some big points.
    No, it doesn't. Please don't read more into my post than was there. ENNGUF stated something which was not the case, I posted statistics purely to refute this specific claim. Your analysis is external to that.
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    (Original post by variatedenigma)
    A quick note - I've had quite a bit of flak for posting this, so I'd like to say that I was trying to start a debate, not attack the Scots.

    It seems that, in the Scottish system, there's a tilt towards doing subjects such as media studies and hospitality (let's face it, those are not academic subjects). There seems to be a shift away from academia, compared to the English system. The academic subjects themselves are, I find, easier in Scotland. To me, this comes over as gearing the system towards underachievers.

    Am I alone in this, or does anyone agree?
    This is probably not the case, and it's a bit inflammatory and antagonistic to negate the efforts of Scottish students past and present. Marks for Scottish Highers are given an equivalency to A-levels by Senior examiners, many of which have Masters in Education or even PhDs, and use powerful statistical methods for working out the right conversion for exams. There are equally as many students here in England and Wales studying more vocational subjects. I think it's erroneous to say that they are less academic (some subjects might be, but that's not for anyone to say), but they are certainly a departure from the pure sciences and humanities (Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Maths, History and English). So, I don't think it for anyone to speculate.
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    that's a great story OP but your thread is now about trains



    choo choo :dance:
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    I think difficulty comparisons depend on the subject really. I'd say SQA sciences are harder, maths is about the same, SQA modern languages are a joke. Haven't compared social sciences but the A-level ones seem pretty easy.

    /doing both A-levels and Highers right now.

    I had heard Cambridge started giving offers at parity for both (ie A* = A1), not sure if that's true though.

    There are pros and cons to each system, people seem to be getting pretty heated about the whole thing. National pride eh

    I will say in Scotland there's a weird tendency for schools/colleges to not let you do as many subjects as you'd like, regardless of your ability.
 
 
 

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