Ox or Cam with poor GCSE's? Watch

lyrical_maze
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#61
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#61
(Original post by kellywood_5)
Apply as long as it's because [I]you[I] want to and not just because your family are putting pressure on you. It's your life and you have to be happy wherever you end up. Don't let your teacher discourage you because she can't actually stop you from applying. Bear in mind that having below average GCSEs, especially from a very good grammar school, will go against you, but GCSEs are far from the most important thing admissions tutors look at and you have the chance to make up for them with A-levels, personal statement, reference, written work, written test and interviews. Which subject do you want to apply for? The more competitive it is, the more your GCSEs will matter. It might also be worth remembering that Cambridge interview virtually everyone who applies, whereas Oxford don't, and GCSEs could be a reason to reject you without interview.
I want to do English... and yeah i do want to go to Oxbridge... do u think its worth a shot?
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Alan Smithee
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#62
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I'm gonna make a bold statement here:

I think Oxbridge pick people out of a hat.
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Alan Smithee
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#63
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(Original post by lyrical_maze)
ok.. now im extremely worried because.. i came from a very good grammar school where... yes... a few ppl did get a string of A*s but... most of us did get more or less what I did mostly because none of us revised as the teachers told us that unis dont look at gcses!! I want to apply for oxbridge.. but my teacher won't let me.. she said they wouldn't even "touch" me say if I did... are my gcse's going to pull me down?... plzzzzzz someone help i have so much pressure as both sides of my family went to oxbridge...
The only thing that would stop them is your A Level choices.

Media and Psychology are not highly rated so I hear.

P.S. Your teacher is a ******
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sTe\/o
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#64
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#64
(Original post by lyrical_maze)
I want to do English... and yeah i do want to go to Oxbridge... do u think its worth a shot?
Well, you won't know unless you apply.
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WokSz
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#65
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#65
(Original post by sTe\/o)
Well, you won't know unless you apply.
ditto.

Also, I have poor IGCSE's (including a B in the subject I wanna study - History) - that's why I'm applying after alevels so that I might have a higher chance.
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kellywood_5
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#66
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#66
(Original post by sTe\/o)
Well, you won't know unless you apply.
:ditto: I never thought I'd stand a chance with my grades, but I got an offer, so it's always worth a shot if you want to go there. Even if you get rejected, you'll probably have gained a fair bit from the application process and won't really have lost anything. Just try not to get your hopes too high.
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alispam
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#67
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#67
Am i the only one whose teachers are really supportive for anyone going for oxbridge?

P.S. your school shouldn't matter as to whether or not your GCSEs are all A***** , but unfortunately it probably does. But overall I think your GCSEs will only have an effect on getting an interview, after that it'll be mostly Alevels and the interview/tests/written work. If you go for a subject that isn't med/vet/law (although eng might just fall into this category) you're v. likely to get an interview - my school has never had anyone not get an interview (we only send 4-5 people a year).
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slk999
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#68
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#68
(Original post by alispam)
Am i the only one whose teachers are really supportive for anyone going for oxbridge?

P.S. your school shouldn't matter as to whether or not your GCSEs are all A***** , but unfortunately it probably does. But overall I think your GCSEs will only have an effect on getting an interview, after that it'll be mostly Alevels and the interview/tests/written work. If you go for a subject that isn't med/vet/law (although eng might just fall into this category) you're v. likely to get an interview - my school has never had anyone not get an interview (we only send 4-5 people a year).
My school is, as a rule, supportive of sending people to Oxbridge. It's just at the moment there's the whole "oh, you'll smear the reputation of the school", but ***** that, I don't care. I'll bide my time and can wait if necessary. But I'm not giving up on applying. Whether it's pre or post-A-level, it doesn't matter. As long as either I'm predicted 3 As or I have 3As then I'll apply.
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kellywood_5
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#69
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#69
(Original post by alispam)
Am i the only one whose teachers are really supportive for anyone going for oxbridge?

P.S. your school shouldn't matter as to whether or not your GCSEs are all A***** , but unfortunately it probably does. But overall I think your GCSEs will only have an effect on getting an interview, after that it'll be mostly Alevels and the interview/tests/written work. If you go for a subject that isn't med/vet/law (although eng might just fall into this category) you're v. likely to get an interview - my school has never had anyone not get an interview (we only send 4-5 people a year).
I'd have to disagree with that actually. The school you go to has a pretty big impact on your GCSE grades, much more so than A-level grades, because someone in a large and disruptive class with a rubbish teacher is obviously going to find it much harder to get an A* than someone in a very small class where everyone wants to learn and the teacher is very competent. I know I've used the two extremes there to make my point and the majority of schools are somewhere in between, but the fact remains that some students get a much better education (and hence much better grades) than others and I think it's excellent that Oxbridge are trying to address that.
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alispam
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#70
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#70
(Original post by kellywood_5)
Bear in mind that having below average GCSEs, especially from a very good grammar school, will go against you
What i actually meant was that where your results are from e.g. 3A* from a top grammar compared to 3A* from a terrible comp shouldn't matter. I know your going to say that the person who went to the comp achieved more but overall your school type should be ignored and you should be judged purely on your academic standard rather than achievements. As people at top private schools will often get v. good results for themselves as there're being pushed with someone standing behind them. When they get to uni and have to work on their own they don't do as well. This (whilst being v. difficult) is best done by interterview...
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sTe\/o
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#71
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Curious... I seem to have received neutral rep for a post in this thread, but the donor was anonymous and left no comment. :confused:
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Mustard-man
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#72
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(Original post by sTe\/o)
Curious... I seem to have received neutral rep for a post in this thread, but the donor was anonymous and left no comment. :confused:
neutral rep, come again?
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kellywood_5
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#73
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(Original post by alispam)
What i actually meant was that where your results are from e.g. 3A* from a top grammar compared to 3A* from a terrible comp shouldn't matter. I know your going to say that the person who went to the comp achieved more but overall your school type should be ignored and you should be judged purely on your academic standard rather than achievements. As people at top private schools will often get v. good results for themselves as there're being pushed with someone standing behind them. When they get to uni and have to work on their own they don't do as well. This (whilst being v. difficult) is best done by interterview...
And universities obviously want students who are going to do well, so if you're saying that in a lot of cases ex-comprehensive school students do better than ex-private school students, which has been statistically proven, I don't see what your argument is for treating all grades the same. If school wasn't taken into account and it was simply a case of the people with the best grades get in, Oxbridge would be far more private school dominated than it is now.
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sTe\/o
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#74
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#74
(Original post by kellywood_5)
And universities obviously want students who are going to do well, so if you're saying that in a lot of cases ex-comprehensive school students do better than ex-private school students, which has been statistically proven, I don't see what your argument is for treating all grades the same. If school wasn't taken into account and it was simply a case of the people with the best grades get in, Oxbridge would be far more private school dominated than it is now.
The statistic is not that state schoolers outperform private schoolers (which is probably not true), it's that they on average do better with the same grades. This is an average, so it will include people from the worst state schools who weren't given a chance to get the grades they deserved. There's really nothing surprising about the statistic.

While I'm on the subject...

Although I have sympathy for people who have received bad teaching and blame their grades on that, I think it's up to all of us to use our initiative rather than relying on our teachers to get us good grades (particularly in cases when we know they're not any good!). I went to a pretty good school (not amazing, but good) and I still had to do this in some subjects. Some people get A*s in subjects which they have completely taught themselves, so it shoudn't be impossible to fill in the gaps in your learning if the standard of teaching isn't up to scratch. On the other hand, if there are problems at home or you have to take on a job etc. etc. then these are much better excuses for underachieving relative to your ability.

Here endeth my pontification.
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Agrippina
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#75
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#75
(Original post by sTe\/o)
Although I have sympathy for people who have received bad teaching and blame their grades on that, I think it's up to all of us to use our initiative rather than relying on our teachers to get us good grades (particularly in cases when we know they're not any good!). I went to a pretty good school (not amazing, but good) and I still had to do this in some subjects. Some people get A*s in subjects which they have completely taught themselves, so it shoudn't be impossible to fill in the gaps in your learning if the standard of teaching isn't up to scratch.
I completely agree - surely Oxbridge wouldn't be impressed with someone passively blaming their grades on their poor teaching despite not having made any effort themselves. It's a pain to have to teach oneself when one should be being taught, but if that's what it takes to get good grades, then so be it.
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lyrical_maze
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#76
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#76
(Original post by kellywood_5)
:ditto: I never thought I'd stand a chance with my grades, but I got an offer, so it's always worth a shot if you want to go there. Even if you get rejected, you'll probably have gained a fair bit from the application process and won't really have lost anything. Just try not to get your hopes too high.

what grades did you get?
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kellywood_5
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#77
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#77
(Original post by lyrical_maze)
what grades did you get?
1 A*, 5.5 As and 3 Bs at GCSE and AABB at AS, predicted AAAA for A2.
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Alan Smithee
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#78
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I think Oxbridge like things like that because it shows you have actively been trying to improve since school.
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kitsune
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#79
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#79
(Original post by Mustard-man)
4A's, 2B's, 3C's here
are you referring to me? I didnt get in... lol! trying for my 3rd time this year!
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kitsune
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#80
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#80
(Original post by GordonP)
Had a look at VazzyBs grade analyser and youre still in the top 95% with those GCSEs.
I would guess that with that and the fact that your predicted AAAA makes you quite appealing to unis, and the worst that can happen if you apply to oxbridge is that they say no, and you go somewhere different.

that webpage is ridiculous!!! it tells me I'm at the 10% GCSEs and then predicts me BBCe at Alevel and i got AAAAb!
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