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Decent A levels, but crap GCSEs: Can I go to a top uni? watch

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    I got 4 As at A Level, but only 6 Cs and 3 Ds at GCSE: Can I go to a top 20 university? Or will they reject me because of my poor GCSE grades?
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    Depends on what course you’re planning on applying for to be honest.. they usually ask for specific grades in Maths and English. for example economics at Leeds, they ask for an A in Maths and a C in English. however if you've done these subjects at A Level, you should be fine.
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    hm...depends really

    did you underperform at GCSE for a particular reason? what A-level subjects? what university? what course? too many variables! so you can't tell!
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    (Original post by n_251)
    hm...depends really

    did you underperform at GCSE for a particular reason? what A-level subjects? what university? what course? too many variables! so you can't tell!
    Yes for the simple reason, that I did not try. No excuses, just a lack of effort. I want to study Biology. The unis I am interested in are: UCL, St Andrews, Warwick, Durham and Newcastle. My A levels are: Biology, Chemistry, Philosophy and Psychology.
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    Yeah you can.

    At GCSE I got: 4 Bs, 3Cs and 4Ds

    Full A-level: A,B,B
    AS: C (technology)
    General studies: C

    And I managed to get into University of Sheffield, ranked 18th by the Times.
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    (Original post by matrix15)
    Yeah you can.

    At GCSE I got: 4 Bs, 3Cs and 4Ds

    Full A-level: A,B,B
    AS: C (technology)
    General studies: C

    And I managed to get into University of Sheffield, ranked 18th by the Times.
    Your GCSEs are better than mine though.
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    (Original post by Shackle)
    Your GCSEs are better than mine though.
    You A-levels are better than mine.

    Touche.
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    I don't see why they wouldn't take you!

    I had the opposite problem and Manchester Uni rang me to ask if I could explain why I had A's in GCSE then sh!t A levels (I was doing an Access course at the time)

    I explained that I had problems at that time and they gave me an offer!

    I'm sure they'll look more at your really good A levels than your GCSEs

    EDIT: I know Manc Uni isn't top 20 but just an example of how if they can do it that way, I'm sure you'll be fine!
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    (Original post by Shackle)
    Yes for the simple reason, that I did not try. No excuses, just a lack of effort. I want to study Biology. The unis I am interested in are: UCL, St Andrews, Warwick, Durham and Newcastle. My A levels are: Biology, Chemistry, Philosophy and Psychology.
    yes you have a chance because you already out do thier Alevel requierments.
    newcastle and durham would definitly be fine as they tend to look for personallities over grades. not sure about the others though?

    i think to do biology you with def need at GCSE; maths C, english C, science C. if you do then you should be fine to apply.

    remember you only need to meet the unis MINIMUM requierments for them to look any furthur at your ucas from.

    also, get an edge. apply to get some work experiance at your local musium in the biological science department and the unis will see that you have really considered your choice.
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    I may be wrong, but aren't Durham quite particular about GCSE results?

    I think most universities will look at your huge improvement from GCSE to A-level as a good thing. Better to have poor GCSE results and excellent A-levels rather than the other way around. I think a lot of universities don't see GCSE results as that important and place more importance on A-levels, personal statement and your reference. Although, it may weaken your application slightly I think you would stand a good chance at many top 20 universities. You got 5 A*-C grades though and if they're in maths, English and science then you should be OK.

    My friend is studying biology at Southampton at the moment and he really likes it there. I remember his offer being ABB so maybe you could replace one of your 'higher risk' choices for this? It's a top 20 university with a solid reputation.

    I found this on their website:

    GCSEs: Grades A–C in English, mathematics and Science. If you lack these formal qualifications, your aptitude for the course will be assessed at interview. * This sounds hopeful as it suggests that they're happy to consider people who may not have the required GCSEs.

    A levels: If offering three Science A levels: 300 points from 3 A levels = BBB
    If offering two Science A levels: 320 points from 3 A levels = ABB
    If only 1 Science A level is offered: 340 points from 3 A levels = AAB with an A in biology; an interview may be required for applicants with only 1 science A level

    For biology degrees, biology must be offered at A level (minimum grade B)
    A level science subjects considered include chemistry, physics, mathematics, psychology, environmental science, geology
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    (Original post by Shackle)
    Yes for the simple reason, that I did not try. No excuses, just a lack of effort. I want to study Biology. The unis I am interested in are: UCL, St Andrews, Warwick, Durham and Newcastle. My A levels are: Biology, Chemistry, Philosophy and Psychology.
    Well it's worth a shout. You have some very well respected A-levels there. Your PS or preferably reference may need to show that you've really changed your attitude to your studies but I'd say with 4As in those subjects you'd have a decent shot at those universities.
 
 
 
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