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A Levels + Sixth Form help, I want to do Medicine. watch

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    I am currently in year 11 and have to decide on a sixth form to go to. I want to do medicine after A Levels.

    I have received offers from my current school (a comprehensive) and a grammar school to study Biology, Chemistry, Maths and History.

    The grammar school also makes you take general studies as a full A Level and runs some enrichment scheme. The comprehensive is a lot more relaxed, the head of sixth form wouldn't mind if I changed my courses in the first few weeks as long as they are suitable.

    I am just wondering whether going to the grammar school will help or hinder me when I apply for uni. Also, are my A Level choices appropriate? I could change them if I go to the comprehensive.


    My GCSE's are as follows:

    English Lang. A (already taken)
    - the rest are expected grades -
    English Lit. A
    Maths A*
    Biology A*
    Chemistry A*
    Physics A*
    ICT A*
    History A/A*
    Geography A/A*
    Food Technology anywhere from a C to A* (my school is a technology college, some tech GCSE is compulsory)

    Thanks.
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    Yes.
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    The grammar school sounds much more likely to get you into medical school. Do you know what the A level success rates for the two schools are?
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    (Original post by jimbo139)
    The grammar school sounds much more likely to get you into medical school. Do you know what the A level success rates for the two schools are?
    I think the pass rate for the comprehensive is about 90+% but that's counting E as a pass. I don't think many people get straight A/A*s (which I'm aiming for).

    The grammar school has about 10% A* overall and 70-80% A*-B (excluding General Studies). The Biology, Chemistry, Maths and History are all above 85% A*-B.

    I don't think going to one particular school will help me to obtain better grades. I am pretty sure that I will get A's at both. (Hopefully).

    Could I ask why you think that the grammar school would help?
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    Go to the comprehensive and the fact that you will have to work of your own back a little will be extremely good for you as a person, and for your application in the end. At the grammar school you're more likely to be 'just another med wannabe' whereas at the comprehensive there will probably be less med applicants, and so more advice for you
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    (Original post by emilylikeeee)
    Go to the comprehensive and the fact that you will have to work of your own back a little will be extremely good for you as a person, and for your application in the end. At the grammar school you're more likely to be 'just another med wannabe' whereas at the comprehensive there will probably be less med applicants, and so more advice for you
    I was thinking that, but then some people say that the best unis want people from private and grammar schools and comprehensive pupils are at a bit of a disadvantage. Some other people say comprehensive pupils who do well have worked harder than grammar pupils with the same grades.

    I'm so confused...

    At the end of the day I don't really care about the school, where my friends go etc. I just want the best chance to get into a medicine course at uni.
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    (Original post by george..)
    I was thinking that, but then some people say that the best unis want people from private and grammar schools and comprehensive pupils are at a bit of a disadvantage. Some other people say comprehensive pupils who do well have worked harder than grammar pupils with the same grades.

    I'm so confused...

    At the end of the day I don't really care about the school, where my friends go etc. I just want the best chance to get into a medicine course at uni.
    That is very true in my opinion; people at comprehensive schools do work harder for the same grade. The chemistry teachers are grammar teachers are often Doctors. The chemistry teacher at my school has never taught A Level before and confessed to us that she cheated to get her degree in India. Therefore, if I can get 100% in chemistry exams, it means more to me because I have achieved off my own back. And at the end of the day, being a Doctor is all about doing things on your own and being a responsible person.
    Some universities might be Favorited for grammar school pupils, but some are not. St Georges and Queen Marys (to my knowledge) are good for comprehensive people to apply too.
    I was in the same situation as you two years ago, and staying at comprehensive school was the right thing for me.
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    An A-level is not like a degree, it's measured compared to every other student in the country. A student who has recieved an A* at a state school is just as good as a student who's got one at a private school, and uni's are not going to reject you because you're not at a grammar. Go wheverever you think you'd be happiest.
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    (Original post by BlueJoker)
    An A-level is not like a degree, it's measured compared to every other student in the country. A student who has recieved an A* at a state school is just as good as a student who's got one at a private school, and uni's are not going to reject you because you're not at a grammar. Go wheverever you think you'd be happiest.
    Actually a fair few unis, especially with medicine look at your grades in comparison to your school, not just your country. If you stick out as the best in your school with As it's better than being beaten by 20+ people with A*s in a different school. Even top tiers like oxbridge look at this.



    I had the choice for a scholarship to a private school or staying at my comprehensive school and staying was the best choice I've ever made in my opinion. Sure there are times when I feel like maybe if I went to the private school I'd have this resource quicker and in a more reliable fashion, but overall I am happier at the comprehensive, I have many teachers dedicating themselves to getting me to do all that I need to get to oxbridge and most importantly I'm still getting good grades.
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    (Original post by hassi94)
    Actually a fair few unis, especially with medicine look at your grades in comparison to your school, not just your country. If you stick out as the best in your school with As it's better than being beaten by 20+ people with A*s in a different school. Even top tiers like oxbridge look at this.



    I had the choice for a scholarship to a private school or staying at my comprehensive school and staying was the best choice I've ever made in my opinion. Sure there are times when I feel like maybe if I went to the private school I'd have this resource quicker and in a more reliable fashion, but overall I am happier at the comprehensive, I have many teachers dedicating themselves to getting me to do all that I need to get to oxbridge and most importantly I'm still getting good grades.
    Sure, but I think that makes little difference unless you're in a really awful, failing, inner-city state school.

    But certainly I've found that my average stat school worked a lot harder to get me into uni than the private school next door did for my friends. :rolleyes:
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    (Original post by hassi94)
    Actually a fair few unis, especially with medicine look at your grades in comparison to your school, not just your country. If you stick out as the best in your school with As it's better than being beaten by 20+ people with A*s in a different school. Even top tiers like oxbridge look at this.
    Lol you've massively exaggerated how those things work.

    If you go to a REALLY bad school, they give you a bit of extra credit.

    But they aren't going to prefer someone with worse grades just because they are the best in their school... How would that be fair? Some schools have lots of smart people in them, and some schools don't.
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    (Original post by Jonty99)
    Lol you've massively exaggerated how those things work.

    If you go to a REALLY bad school, they give you a bit of extra credit.

    But they aren't going to prefer someone with worse grades just because they are the best in their school... How would that be fair? Some schools have lots of smart people in them, and some schools don't.
    You misinterpreted me. I never said worse grades, I was saying the same grades in two different tiers of school.
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    (Original post by hassi94)
    You misinterpreted me. I never said worse grades, I was saying the same grades in two different tiers of school.
    Oh yeah, sorry.

    Even then, I'm still not sure medical schools would discriminate unless the person attended a truly awful school (which neither of the schools the OP has described sound like), but of course I can't be sure.
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    (Original post by Jonty99)
    Oh yeah, sorry.

    Even then, I'm still not sure medical schools would discriminate unless the person attended a truly awful school (which neither of the schools the OP has described sound like), but of course I can't be sure.
    Yeah I understand your point, that's just what I got told from some admissions officers at Medlink 2010 and an assistant admissions officer from Cambridge who came to my school
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    Don't forget it's not just about grades.The grammar school may be better placed to offer advice about work experience placements,personal statements and interview techniques required to get in to medicine.
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    Why don't you ask both schools how many ex pupils over, say , the last 5 years have gone on to study medicine? If the grammar has had a high success rate compared to your comp,I would go for that option.
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    I don't think it matters - you'll work hard enough to get the same grades no matter where you go, and you'll do the same for organising work experience and voluntary work.

    Your application is YOURS, and what you do to improve it is what matters. You may possibly be able to get better contacts for the grammar school, but as long as the comprehensive isn't a BAD one, then you'll get the same help from them. And if they're more relaxed, they'll be a bit nicer about it I'd have thought.

    I go to a BIG college, but it is the best sixth form in the area, and so I had a few meetings with my form tutor about my application, whereas my friends who go to a much smaller comprehensive had lots of meetings with lots of different people. So it was more personal and friendly.

    Its not about whether its a grammar or not, its about what they actually do!
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    go to the comprehensive and pretty much say goodbye to any resonable chances of getting into med school....

    cos trust me, you get no help and you have to self teach the entire syllabus....

    God only knows how I got an offer....but no-one else has.....
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    I think you should meet the teachers if you are still indecisive. Ask them what they can do for you to help you reach the best grade you possibly can. As you will probably know A* grade has been introduced into A levels so you will probably need a couple of those to get into a medical school. In my opinion you can get to medical school from any reasonably good school, you just have to work very hard, as you said do a lot of self teaching. However you will be self teaching a lot in university as well (reading round the subject etc)

    hope it helped a little.
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    (Original post by george..)
    I am currently in year 11 and have to decide on a sixth form to go to. I want to do medicine after A Levels.

    I have received offers from my current school (a comprehensive) and a grammar school to study Biology, Chemistry, Maths and History.

    The grammar school also makes you take general studies as a full A Level and runs some enrichment scheme. The comprehensive is a lot more relaxed, the head of sixth form wouldn't mind if I changed my courses in the first few weeks as long as they are suitable.

    I am just wondering whether going to the grammar school will help or hinder me when I apply for uni. Also, are my A Level choices appropriate? I could change them if I go to the comprehensive.


    My GCSE's are as follows:

    English Lang. A (already taken)
    - the rest are expected grades -
    English Lit. A
    Maths A*
    Biology A*
    Chemistry A*
    Physics A*
    ICT A*
    History A/A*
    Geography A/A*
    Food Technology anywhere from a C to A* (my school is a technology college, some tech GCSE is compulsory)

    Thanks.
    I did History AS level. I liked it but I would definitely warn you that its a lot of work and takes up a lot of your time when it comes to revision. I got an A* in it at GCSE but AS is a whole other level of content. its just a ridiculous amount of knowledge. if you think you can manage it thats fine but you should think about maybe choosing an AS that is much easier to get an A in and that requires much less work.

    also moving schools can be an extra added pressue because you have to adjust to new surroundings, make new friends and on top of that aim to get good results at the end of the year especially as you want to medicine. if you think that the grammar school will help you get better grades then you should maybe think about moving there.
 
 
 
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