Oxbridge: Will you get the grades? Watch

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lucerna
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#21
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#21
(Original post by Ensocopier)
For both Oxford and Cambridge?
It's only Cambridge that pool, so that probably only applies to them. If Oxford have a similar system I haven't heard of it.
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Bumblebee3
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#22
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#22
(Original post by lucerna)
It's only Cambridge that pool, so that probably only applies to them. If Oxford have a similar system I haven't heard of it.
I have a few freinds who missed a grade and were placed in different colleges through the summer pool (Cam.) Oxford to accept some people who miss grades although I don't think they go to different colleges - their admissions office either overlooks it or doesn't let them in as far as I know.
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devilschild
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#23
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#23
the only subject im worried about getting the A in is AS further maths. getting AAA in my other subjects shouldnt be a problem cos i only need C's in bio and chem this year and E's on the next 2 A2 maths papers.
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fishpaste
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#24
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#24
Well STEP is a huge unknown, I have no idea how I'll perform in STEP. I'm pretty confident that after the STEP exams I will be sure I didn't make the STEP offer, but I know by experience I have to sit out the worrying, and wait to find out. Still, I know they expect many an applicant to fail STEP and not have their place confirmed.

My Clare letter makes it very clear that if I don't sit all of my subjects (including an AS I'm taking) then the offer is off, so that's my idea of dropping down to 3 subjects out of the window. I'm taking double maths, economics and physics. However, I'm doing all the physics this year, 'further physics' stylee, and I'm having some real problems getting to grips with the last three modules. I know for sure I'll be getting a C or D in the January module I'm taking soon, but I think I can perform better in summer, with some motivation behind me, and the pressure of getting an offer off. Anyway, I'm rambling, my point is, now I don't need a top grade in physics, or a grade at all! (My offer is AAB, any subjects + STEP 1/2). So I'm wondering, shall I really drop all effort for physics, and let it slide to an crap grade? Making sure I get my AAA in the other three, and I reach my STEP grades. My only concern with doing this is if I did, they'd take no pity if I marginally missed my STEP offer. However, if I force myself to get to grips with physics and try and get the A, I might lower my ability to pass STEP. I think I'll decide after January, maybe try and get a low B in physics, AAA in the others, then put all my remaining drive into STEP. I'd like to surpass my STEP offer, to be honest, it'd be so nice to get an S in II. (Though as somebody said, I'm so glad I don't have to get 1,1.)
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JaF
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#25
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#25
(Original post by fishpaste)
I think I'll decide after January, maybe try and get a low B in physics, AAA in the others, then put all my remaining drive into STEP. I'd like to surpass my STEP offer, to be honest, it'd be so nice to get an S in II. (Though as somebody said, I'm so glad I don't have to get 1,1.)
That sounds like you best option, I'm kind of in a simillar position but without STEP. I'm taking maths, physics, chemistry and History. My offer for engineering was AAA Maths, physics, chemistry and I've asked would I be allowed to drop History. If they say no I still won't go to any History lessons and I shall just sit the exam and fail it (still probably get a C overall). Its risky if I miss my AAA but I think its my best option. Plus I'm taking a gap year so hopefully I can do January resits if I mess up.
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theone
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#26
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#26
Incidentally, it's worth pointing out that only 40% of people that take STEP get a 1 or better, so the competition is pretty fierce.
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fishpaste
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#27
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#27
(Original post by JaF)
That sounds like you best option, I'm kind of in a simillar position but without STEP. I'm taking maths, physics, chemistry and History. My offer for engineering was AAA Maths, physics, chemistry and I've asked would I be allowed to drop History. If they say no I still won't go to any History lessons and I shall just sit the exam and fail it (still probably get a C overall). Its risky if I miss my AAA but I think its my best option. Plus I'm taking a gap year so hopefully I can do January resits if I mess up.
Did you tell them that? I suppose you could, "If you don't let me drop it I'm just going to sign the exam paper and leave the exam hall." There's not much they could do unless you messed something else up. Well, apart from make things bad once you got there. Could they find another reason to not accept you?
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fishpaste
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#28
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#28
(Original post by theone)
Incidentally, it's worth pointing out that only 40% of people that take STEP get a 1 or better, so the competition is pretty fierce.
Aghh! That's rather unsettling, given that anybody taken STEP is going to be as motivated as me and probably more able. Not many people take STEP who aren't going for Cam/Warwick huh? I hope alot of the people not getting 1s are Warwick applicants who only need 2s.
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yawn1
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#29
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#29
(Original post by fishpaste)
Aghh! That's rather unsettling, given that anybody taken STEP is going to be as motivated as me and probably more able. Not many people take STEP who aren't going for Cam/Warwick huh? I hope alot of the people not getting 1s are Warwick applicants who only need 2s.
According to peers, STEP 3 is the hardest exam they've even taken
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meepmeep
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#30
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#30
(Original post by It'sPhil...)
Same - it seems maths applicants have the hardest time due to STEP, but iguess it sorta balances out cos you get 2 easy As in double maths. Also i need an E this year to get enough in economics. I'm just glad I have 1,2 offer, not 1,1 like trinity applicants
*Think back to why I applied to Trinity....*

Ah well. At least if I do get a 1,1 I know I'll be able to handle the course.
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JaF
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#31
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#31
(Original post by fishpaste)
Did you tell them that? I suppose you could, "If you don't let me drop it I'm just going to sign the exam paper and leave the exam hall." There's not much they could do unless you messed something else up. Well, apart from make things bad once you got there. Could they find another reason to not accept you?
I haven't told them that!!!! I just enquired as to where I would stand if I drop History. Hopefully they won't increase by offer to AAAA just to spite me.
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yawn1
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#32
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#32
(Original post by It'sPhil...)
Same - it seems maths applicants have the hardest time due to STEP, but iguess it sorta balances out cos you get 2 easy As in double maths. Also i need an E this year to get enough in economics. I'm just glad I have 1,2 offer, not 1,1 like trinity applicants
Why do you think that because someone is doing 2 A levels in Maths it is easy. They are all separate modules - 12 of them! Many who do Maths can get an A but it's a darned sight harder to get an A in Further Maths as well.
1,2 STEP will NOT be easy
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hildabeast
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#33
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#33
(Original post by lucerna)
It's only Cambridge that pool, so that probably only applies to them. If Oxford have a similar system I haven't heard of it.
This does happen at Oxford, its just not called the Summer Pool. Sometimes people are accepted straightaway if they only just missed the offer. Sometimes other colleges step in where they have places for which other people have missed the grades or turned down. My next door neighbour was picked up by Hilda's after missing her offer from Brasenose by one grade.

x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x-x
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Suzy_vet
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#34
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#34
I have an offer for 3A's for vet med at Emmanuel, Combridge, and it does seem to inply Ive got to carry on with all 4 A2's. I have emailed to find out, but it does seem pointless, especially since my fourth is further maths. I just hope i get the grades of I'll be gutted!
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Lucy
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#35
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#35
(Original post by Suzy_vet)
I have an offer for 3A's for vet med at Emmanuel, Combridge, and it does seem to inply Ive got to carry on with all 4 A2's. I have emailed to find out, but it does seem pointless, especially since my fourth is further maths. I just hope i get the grades of I'll be gutted!
Oo well done, the competition must have been fierce ! My friend applied for vet science at Downing where there were 80 applicants for 4 places - she didn't get in (nor did the other applicant from my school). Anyway, so congrats ! Good luck with making your offer
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redcat
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#36
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#36
(Original post by lucerna)
It's only Cambridge that pool, so that probably only applies to them. If Oxford have a similar system I haven't heard of it.
Oxford handle the pool a different way. At Cambridge, you can only get an offer from a specific college. Say you apply to Jesus, you get an offer from them, or you are rejected, or you go into the winter pool and get an offer from, say, Peterhouse. If you miss your grades, and Peterhouse don't want you, you go into the summer pool and you might get picked out there by yet another college, say if more of their candidates missed their offers than they expected, and missed by worse than you - say everybody had AAA offers but their people got ABC and you got AAB.

At Oxford, you apply to, say, Queen's, and you either get an offer from them, or from another college, say Somerville, or you get an 'open offer', which is a kind of 'guaranteed pool.' It means that if you get the grades, you are guaranteed a place but they can't say at which college yet. Then, in August, when some person who held an offer from, say, New College, doesn't make her grades, New College can either take her anyway, or can take one of the open offer people who did make her grades. But all the 'open offer' people who make their grades MUST and WILL be found a place somewhere. But they will not know where till August.

Both unis allow you to apply as an 'open applicant' without specifiying a college, but both assign you to a first choice college and after that everything goes along on the same track as someone who chose a college to apply to.
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redcat
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#37
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#37
(Original post by JaF)
That sounds like you best option, I'm kind of in a simillar position but without STEP. I'm taking maths, physics, chemistry and History. My offer for engineering was AAA Maths, physics, chemistry and I've asked would I be allowed to drop History. If they say no I still won't go to any History lessons and I shall just sit the exam and fail it (still probably get a C overall). Its risky if I miss my AAA but I think its my best option. Plus I'm taking a gap year so hopefully I can do January resits if I mess up.
One thing you should consider is that nowdays, employers all want to see A level marks as well as uni results, because so many people get degrees and get 2.1 and above, that employers want to see A level marks to distinguish between candidates. This is true, you hear it everywhere. So getting a bad mark on an A level has that downside. If you could actually just drop the subject, that would be better.
I know somebody who had an AAA offer from Cambridge, he was taking three A levels and an AS level (under the old system, whereby the AS was taken over the whole two years of the sixth form but was only worth half a full A level.) He worked hard on his three main subjects, in which he was required to get As, and basically ignored his AS subject. He ended up with a C in it, and obviously still got into Cambridge. It made sense at the time, but now that he is about to graduate and look for work, this C on his A level record will not look so good, especially as it is in a subject that turns out to be somewhat relevant to the area he's looking for employment in. Just something to bear in mind.
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Sazzle
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#38
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#38
When coming up to A-level time I decided to concentrate my efforts on my 3 main subjects and let my geography slip, my teacher was useless anyway and I doubted that I would get an A even with my full attention on it. But in the end I stil got an A in it, I suppose due to a good AS mark and I did do some revision as long as it wasn't at a time when I should have been revising another subject.
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lucerna
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#39
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#39
(Original post by Suzy_vet)
I have an offer for 3A's for vet med at Emmanuel, Combridge, and it does seem to inply Ive got to carry on with all 4 A2's. I have emailed to find out, but it does seem pointless, especially since my fourth is further maths. I just hope i get the grades of I'll be gutted!
Yay, another prospective Emmanuel-er! Congrats
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erika_johanna
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#40
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#40
Okay, this is going to be rambling and digressive, but it does have something to do with getting the grades. I'm almost definitely making Durham my insurance choice, and my offer from them is a lot lower than my Cambridge offer, but both of them specify an IB 7 in English, which is the subject I'm going to study next year.
Now, from what I've been told and from my results so far, I'm probably more than good enough to get a 7. But I'm also turning out to have an Achilles heel when it comes to one specific aspect of the IB English exams, and I can't be a hundred percent certain that I'll be able to deal with it before the May exams. So there is a slight chance that I'll end up lower than a 7.
All this makes me feel that perhaps I should go for an insurance choice that's offered me a 6 in English, but I really really want Durham. So my question is: does anyone think there's the slightest chance that Durham would take me if I missed this very important grade? And would asking the college this be a hideously bad idea?
I know it sounds...dumb. But this is bothering me, and I don't want to give up Durham.
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