130196
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I'm a 16 years old and i've just started doing my A levels at college. At the time i thought that college was right for me but since i started i've been really unhappy and i'm looking for an alternative. However, i don't want to go back to my old school's sixth form.
I was thinking about doing my A levels from home so that i can do everything in my own pace and build up my confidence in my own time.
I was wondering if anybody had any advice on doing A levels from home, plus, some extra positives and negatives. I've been finding it hard to find out very much about it.
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returnmigrant
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Teaching yourself A levels isnt an easy option, you are most likely to either drop out or get low grades. Self-teach is really for 'mature' people with a great deal of motivation and organisation. If you cant cope with College, then how will you cope with anything else in your life? Running away and hiding at home isnt the solution.

Go and talk to someone at College. You wont be the first person to have made the break from school and then felt a bit lost.
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Wiska
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I am self-teaching at home and to be honest it was quite hard at first, I was waking up late and finding it hard and boring to even open my books but once I realised how important it all is to my future I got all organised, spoke to a private tutor, found out how sitting exams privately would work and right now I feel that I am on course to doing quite well in January!

Learning at home isn't for everyone, I went to college and although it may seem like it isn't for you at first it really is very good once you meet loads of new people! Revise what you learned at college everyday and you will feel more confident about your progress and of course - you will feel more happy at college!
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130196
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(Original post by Wiska)
I am self-teaching at home and to be honest it was quite hard at first, I was waking up late and finding it hard and boring to even open my books but once I realised how important it all is to my future I got all organised, spoke to a private tutor, found out how sitting exams privately would work and right now I feel that I am on course to doing quite well in January!

Learning at home isn't for everyone, I went to college and although it may seem like it isn't for you at first it really is very good once you meet loads of new people! Revise what you learned at college everyday and you will feel more confident about your progress and of course - you will feel more happy at college!
Just wondering, why did you decide to self teach from home?
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Wiska
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Well I didn't have much choice tbh. I just completed 2 years of college in May, had all the A-Levels for a Business degree but changed my mind about what degree I wanted. Initially I tried applying to some colleges but they turned me down because I already had the equivalent of 3.5 A-Levels so now I am self-teaching A-Level Maths and Economics - The Maths being crucial as I want to do a degree in Computer Science :P

Just take your time though, 130196, don't make hasty decisions over home learning, talk to your Principal about it. One of my friends had done over 1 month of college before he realised that he couldn't do it anymore. He spoke to the Principal and she offered him the chance to leave college this year, do what he wanted for the rest of the academic year and then apply again the year after (He did apply and got in - He spent the year working and came back more mature and determined to do well

The guy had done really well at GCSE's so perhaps that's a reason why he was offered that chance but I'm not sure whether that was the main factor behind the decision
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VannR
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(Original post by returnmigrant)
Teaching yourself A levels isnt an easy option, you are most likely to either drop out or get low grades. Self-teach is really for 'mature' people with a great deal of motivation and organisation. If you cant cope with College, then how will you cope with anything else in your life? Running away and hiding at home isnt the solution.

Go and talk to someone at College. You wont be the first person to have made the break from school and then felt a bit lost.
You are absolutely wrong. I have been home-taught since the age of 8, and I am now doing A-levels. There is nothing wrong wrong with self-study as it has given me a great deal of organisation and motivation. No, it is not an 'easy' option, but if you do it right, you can study much better than anyone studying at a college.
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justinawe
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(Original post by VannR)
You are absolutely wrong. I have been home-taught since the age of 8, and I am now doing A-levels. There is nothing wrong wrong with self-study as it has given me a great deal of organisation and motivation. No, it is not an 'easy' option, but if you do it right, you can study much better than anyone studying at a college.
The difference here is, however, that you've been doing it since you were 8. OP has been doing it the conventional way up to now, so it would be more difficult for her to switch to self-studying and maintain good grades.

Self-study isn't for everyone, in any case. Just because you pulled it off fine doesn't mean it's a good idea for someone else.
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130196
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I really appreciate all the feedback
I was never going to make a rash decision, i'm still at college and there's every chance that, given time, i'll settle in there better. I just thought that in the meantime i should find out as much as possible about my other options, so i posted this to help me to get some more information.
Does anybody have a good site or source that i can find out more about studying A levels from home? I have been having trouble finding very much information about it
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VannR
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(Original post by justinawe)
The difference here is, however, that you've been doing it since you were 8. OP has been doing it the conventional way up to now, so it would be more difficult for her to switch to self-studying and maintain good grades.

Self-study isn't for everyone, in any case. Just because you pulled it off fine doesn't mean it's a good idea for someone else.
Good point, mate. I guess it may be difficult to make the immediate switch to self-motivation and self-organisation without affecting your grades. Considering I have been studying this way for 8 years, its probably much easier for me.
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Aidanb90
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I have studied at home and at colleges, I would lean towards you staying in college and trying to make it work and be happier there. Doing exams privately is a complicated and expensive process. If you could solve you're college issues and get on with it that would be the easiest option in my opinion. It's only two years and then you are gone off to uni or whatever, good look.
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J.Nalbandian14
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Yes that should be fine, it will probably allow you to concentrate more. What do your parents think?
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AK0001
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(Original post by 130196)
I'm a 16 years old and i've just started doing my A levels at college. At the time i thought that college was right for me but since i started i've been really unhappy and i'm looking for an alternative. However, i don't want to go back to my old school's sixth form.
I was thinking about doing my A levels from home so that i can do everything in my own pace and build up my confidence in my own time.
I was wondering if anybody had any advice on doing A levels from home, plus, some extra positives and negatives. I've been finding it hard to find out very much about it.
I studied at home, I did mainly arts subjects: history, economics and maths. Maths was a struggle and in fact I didn't get the A I needed for uni entry (they still let me in regardless). History and Economics were really easy to self teach, however History does have a coursework option and I was forced to enter myself via a recognised centre which moderates coursework. It was a pain.

If you're driven, disciplined and enjoy flexibility then it may be a good idea to give independent studying consideration. I'm not sure about Science subjects and how they work, so if that's what you wish to study, I would try to find someone who's done sciences independently before and ask them.
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MarshmallowBob
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Its hard, tough, and often very daunting. its is no walk in the park. I did AS math by myself, and i got an A(matter of fact the only A i got. lol). but as someone whose gone through that, i do not recommend going down that path. there are alot of things you have to take into consideration;
you have to correct your own work.
when you get something right, theres no teacher to say "good job!"(< that never happens but the point is you have to stay motivated.)
If you dont understand something, theres no teacher to help explain. you have to figure it out yourself, which takes time and dedication.
but there are its pros:
work on your own pace ( this can actually be a con)
once you reach the answer, after hours of figuring out, it is very rewarding and it sticks.
the key is putting in alot of time and effort.
but can i ask, what exactly is making you unhappy in college?
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aletheawithlove
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Hi there! I've been in normal school for most of my life until I finished my GCSEs. I've currently being home schooled for my A levels and to be honest, it was quite a hard change. I didn't like the environment of college so I chose to leave. You do have to have some amount of discipline and self-motivation if you want to take this route because you have to keep in mind you won't have that many resources unless you're loaded enough for private tutors. I'm doing History, English Lit, Bio and Art. I'm doing quite well now and I'll hopefully get the A*AA I want! good luck
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lilly_orchid999
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(Original post by Wiska)
I am self-teaching at home and to be honest it was quite hard at first, I was waking up late and finding it hard and boring to even open my books but once I realised how important it all is to my future I got all organised, spoke to a private tutor, found out how sitting exams privately would work and right now I feel that I am on course to doing quite well in January!

Learning at home isn't for everyone, I went to college and although it may seem like it isn't for you at first it really is very good once you meet loads of new people! Revise what you learned at college everyday and you will feel more confident about your progress and of course - you will feel more happy at college!
hey wiska i really need some help from someone that is teaching themselves from home, i did my as levels last year and didnt do very well. i applied for college to do bio chem and maths but the couldnt give me a place in the chem classes so i had to leave and now all the colleges have no spaces and home schooling is my only option and i really need help in what to do and where i can start home schooling please can you help me and send me some links that will help as well. thanks
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Wiska
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(Original post by lilly_orchid999)
hey wiska i really need some help from someone that is teaching themselves from home
Hi Lilly,

I was in a similar situation, except I had already done my A-Levels but changed my mind about what degree I wanted to do. Upon applying to colleges I was turned down due to the fact that I already had 3.5 A-Levels and also because it would be impossible to teach me the courses I wanted in a year at their college (I wanted to do A-Level Maths in one year)

I am currently self-teaching A-Level Maths, Economics and then Further Maths.

The thing is, the courses I am doing only requires you to take written exams and can be learned individually, either by taking courses online, taking private lessons or teaching yourself from books. As far as I know, you could easily teach yourself the Maths by yourself with some dedication and take the exams but I believe it is a completely different story for Chemistry and/ or Biology as you will have to take part in practical exams.

My suggestion to you is to contact your previous college or even a local one and ask if they will allow you to take part in their practical exams - this may be a bit costly. You will also have to pay for the paper as well as sitting the exam at the college you choose.

1. The first step would be to choose an exam board (AQA, Edexcel, OCR...)
2. Find the cost of exams and try to find an exam centre (try your old college.)
2. Buy the books you will need off of Amazon, or any other store.
3. I highly suggest you take some private lessons or take a distant learning course as that combination you've chosen isn't easy to self-teach.
4. Once all of that is sorted out, make a timetable so you don't get distracted and stay off-schedule.
5. Come on TSR if you need any help, we love to help
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130196
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Do i have to enrol at an open college to do my A levels from home, or is there another way? Because the open colleges i've looked at have all been realy expensive
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rabbit_florence
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By looking at those answers up there^ I think it massively depends on the subjects you choose. I'm doing English Literature and Psychology from home, and finding it easy. I have all of the support that I need from AQA, and also from the school where I will be sitting the exams next year.


this is how I suggest you do this:

first find out which exam board you'd like to take your exams with. A good idea would be to ring up your local schools, and ask them if they allow Private Candidates. It will cost me £20 per exam next year, but bear in mind that prices differ considerably from school to school. So ask around.

When you have found the school, they will tell you which exam board they use.

the next step would be to go onto the examination board website, (AQA, OCR e.t.c) and download the specification for the subjects you've chosen. On there, there will be a list of books you need to read and study.
Also get as many extra resources as you can, such as the revision books. They are a huge help. The exam board website will also have past papers and things that you can download.

it's not as complicated as people are making out, and perfect if you have extra jobs going on, or if you just... Ahem, dislike school with a huge passion. It's not expensive, you can do everything in your own time... But you MUST know what you're doing and you must know where to go for help. You also need to be motivated. You just can't give up is all. But if you enjoy the subjects that you're doing, then you probably won't.

My reasons for home studying was that I was just not very productive in a school environment. I was always getting distracted. From home I'm having to put a LOT of work in, and it's keeping me wonderfully occupied. I'm always so busy, and the courses that I've chosen are so interesting.
give it a go, see if you like it. The truth is that home studying may of may not be for you. Regular school is really ideal for some people, others not so much. How you study is not a huge deal or anything, as long as you get good grades.
I mean, school isn't even compulsory anymore and if you don't like it, keep trying until you find something that you DO like.
Good luck!


Let me know if you found this information useful.
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Q.A.T
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Hi Everyone, I am new to TSR so don't really know how it works. But i have some queries regarding Home Schooling.

In the UK if a child over the age of 16 is home schooled does he/she need a parent or a tutor to teach them or are they able to self teach?

How Much does it cost to do the ISA's for science A-levels? I am aware that currently it is around £12.85 on the AQA website for the year 2013 and will increase/vary next year however will the school or college where you do this practical charge extra or not???

Is there a limitation on how many exams that you can sit if you are home-schooled???

I am currently in my First year of AS-Level and will God willing drop out and do A2 at home. I do not learn by someone talking at me, i mean i will understand it at the time however after that i will not be able to recall that information. I learn by teaching my self so think that this will be a better option for.

Can the school or college prevent you from being home-schooled as it is legally permissible for a parent to remove there child from the school system in the UK as far as i am aware???

Thank You for your reply, it will be greatly appreciated!!!!
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Data
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(Original post by Q.A.T)
In the UK if a child over the age of 16 is home schooled does he/she need a parent or a tutor to teach them or are they able to self teach?
Self teach.

(Original post by Q.A.T)
How Much does it cost to do the ISA's for science A-levels? I am aware that currently it is around £12.85 on the AQA website for the year 2013 and will increase/vary next year however will the school or college where you do this practical charge extra or not???
It is extremely hard to find a centre to accept you for the ISAs and the costs vary enormously - £300 for 1 ISA is not unheard of. Anything under £80 will be a bargain.

(Original post by Q.A.T)
Is there a limitation on how many exams that you can sit if you are home-schooled???
No, you can take as many as you can afford.

(Original post by Q.A.T)
Can the school or college prevent you from being home-schooled
The school cannot prevent parents removing a child of any age. There are certainly no bars to someone over 16 leaving.
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