Life Sciences foundation year at Manchester University

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alisartaj
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Hello everyone,

I've just done the life sciences foundation year so if anyone has any questions regarding the course, I'd be happy to answer!
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mygirls
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Hey, I'm hoping to study optometry in september but in the event i don't get the grades, I may try to get onto the life sciences foundation year and try to progress onto the optometry course; is this possible??

Also, I hear the foundation year is taught at the xaverian college - does this detract from the "university experience" in any way? (like, do you ever feel like your not part of the student body because of this/do you get the opportunity to 'mingle' with life science students on the other courses?)

And, how hard is the course please (in terms of course content/lecture hours/etc)?

Thanks in advance!
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Tangotangodelta
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Why dont you resit your A levels instead ?
I believe its more efficient (time and moneywise) than doing a foundation degree ? (If you are currently studying the relevant A levels of course (Maths/Bio/Chem/Phys))
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alisartaj
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(Original post by mygirls)
Hey, I'm hoping to study optometry in september but in the event i don't get the grades, I may try to get onto the life sciences foundation year and try to progress onto the optometry course; is this possible??

Also, I hear the foundation year is taught at the xaverian college - does this detract from the "university experience" in any way? (like, do you ever feel like your not part of the student body because of this/do you get the opportunity to 'mingle' with life science students on the other courses?)

And, how hard is the course please (in terms of course content/lecture hours/etc)?

Thanks in advance!
Hello!
Yes it's possible to progress on to optometry but you'll need to get 25 points out of 30 in the foundation year. Which is roughly equivalent to AAB in maths, biology and chemistry; in all honesty, maths taught is probably just above GCSE level and so very basic and therefore, achieving an A isn't very hard! Whereas to do any other course, like physiology, you'll need 22 points to pass the year and progress which is roughly an ABB or even BBB depending on what you get in which subject (complicated as!)

Yeah its taught at xaverian; like college all over again but living in halls makes up for it to be honest! Besides, you'll have the same access to what the uni offers to every other student. At xaverian, you'll just be with foundation year students, should be about 60 of you split in to two groups. You probably won't get to meet any other life science students unless they're from your halls or something.

Course will be intense. Especially if you want to study optometry; the first semester not really but the second, yes! That's because there's so much work to cover but not enough time. You'll be in every day of the week but 2 or 3 days are likely to be just 2 to 3 hours of lectures and that's it. Free for rest of day! I found it tough because I had not studied any science since GCSE yet I still managed to get 25 points out of 30 (although I did work hard!) But considering you'll have covered most the topics, it shouldn't be too bad!
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DrCrayCray
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(Original post by alisartaj)
Hello!
Yes it's possible to progress on to optometry but you'll need to get 25 points out of 30 in the foundation year. Which is roughly equivalent to AAB in maths, biology and chemistry; in all honesty, maths taught is probably just above GCSE level and so very basic and therefore, achieving an A isn't very hard! Whereas to do any other course, like physiology, you'll need 22 points to pass the year and progress which is roughly an ABB or even BBB depending on what you get in which subject (complicated as!)

Yeah its taught at xaverian; like college all over again but living in halls makes up for it to be honest! Besides, you'll have the same access to what the uni offers to every other student. At xaverian, you'll just be with foundation year students, should be about 60 of you split in to two groups. You probably won't get to meet any other life science students unless they're from your halls or something.

Course will be intense. Especially if you want to study optometry; the first semester not really but the second, yes! That's because there's so much work to cover but not enough time. You'll be in every day of the week but 2 or 3 days are likely to be just 2 to 3 hours of lectures and that's it. Free for rest of day! I found it tough because I had not studied any science since GCSE yet I still managed to get 25 points out of 30 (although I did work hard!) But considering you'll have covered most the topics, it shouldn't be too bad!
I'm doing Biology chemistry pyschology and sociology at a level, do you think i can do optometry?
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alisartaj
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(Original post by DrCrayCray)
I'm doing Biology chemistry pyschology and sociology at a level, do you think i can do optometry?
Hi, erm do you want to study the foundation year beforehand or are you talking about doing optom and straight in to year one?
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Tangotangodelta
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(Original post by DrCrayCray)
I'm doing Biology chemistry pyschology and sociology at a level, do you think i can do optometry?
Yeah in terms of subjects, no problem at all (2 A-levels in Maths/Bio/Physics or Chemistry are required). Just try and get an A in Bio and B in the rest and you'll get in (maybe not your first choice of uni but still)
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mygirls
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(Original post by Tangotangodelta)
x
Yeah, there's always that - I'm just so desperate to get into Manchester, and to my understanding, they don't accept resit students onto the optometry course But hey, I guess i'll just have to accept if i don't get in, I didn't deserve to.

(Original post by alisartaj)
x
Thanks for your detailed answer; it's cleared up so many things! Seems to me like trying out clearing into a less competitive optometry course might be more fitting for me though.. :/

Just one more quick question please if that's ok; As your a life sciences student - I was wondering whether you happened to know what sort of grades would be permitted for acceptance onto the optometry course by any chance? My offer's AAB (Maths, Bio, Chem), but I think I'm heading towards ABB (Math, Bio Chem), maybe even BBB - do you know of anyone thats managed to get onto the course with these sort of A level grades?

P.S. What course are you progressing to, by the way?
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alisartaj
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(Original post by mygirls)
Yeah, there's always that - I'm just so desperate to get into Manchester, and to my understanding, they don't accept resit students onto the optometry course But hey, I guess i'll just have to accept if i don't get in, I didn't deserve to.


Thanks for your detailed answer; it's cleared up so many things! Seems to me like trying out clearing into a less competitive optometry course might be more fitting for me though.. :/

Just one more quick question please if that's ok; As your a life sciences student - I was wondering whether you happened to know what sort of grades would be permitted for acceptance onto the optometry course by any chance? My offer's AAB (Maths, Bio, Chem), but I think I'm heading towards ABB (Math, Bio Chem), maybe even BBB - do you know of anyone thats managed to get onto the course with these sort of A level grades?

P.S. What course are you progressing to, by the way?
You could probably get away with ABB with an A in biology, I don't think BBB would be good enough, especially with optometry which is so competitive considering the limited number of spaces available! So in reply to your question, I don't know of anyone and I don't think anyone would get in with BBB.

I'm progressing on to cognitive neuroscience and psychology
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Origami Bullets
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(Original post by mygirls)
Yeah, there's always that - I'm just so desperate to get into Manchester, and to my understanding, they don't accept resit students onto the optometry course But hey, I guess i'll just have to accept if i don't get in, I didn't deserve to.

Thanks for your detailed answer; it's cleared up so many things! Seems to me like trying out clearing into a less competitive optometry course might be more fitting for me though.. :/

Just one more quick question please if that's ok; As your a life sciences student - I was wondering whether you happened to know what sort of grades would be permitted for acceptance onto the optometry course by any chance? My offer's AAB (Maths, Bio, Chem), but I think I'm heading towards ABB (Math, Bio Chem), maybe even BBB - do you know of anyone thats managed to get onto the course with these sort of A level grades?

P.S. What course are you progressing to, by the way?
(Original post by alisartaj)
You could probably get away with ABB with an A in biology, I don't think BBB would be good enough, especially with optometry which is so competitive considering the limited number of spaces available! So in reply to your question, I don't know of anyone and I don't think anyone would get in with BBB.

I'm progressing on to cognitive neuroscience and psychology
To be fair, I know someone who got onto the EPS foundation year with BBC at A Level, and who then went on to do physics. It's not quite the same course, but given that (a) physics at Manchester is very competitive and asks for A*A*A-A*AA at A Level, and (b) all applications to both LS and EPS foundation years are considered on an individual basis, it's one of those things where 'never say never' applies - just make sure that you have also applied to universities where you meet or exceed their stated entry requirements.
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alisartaj
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(Original post by Origami Bullets)
To be fair, I know someone who got onto the EPS foundation year with BBC at A Level, and who then went on to do physics. It's not quite the same course, but given that (a) physics at Manchester is very competitive and asks for A*A*A-A*AA at A Level, and (b) all applications to both LS and EPS foundation years are considered on an individual basis, it's one of those things where 'never say never' applies - just make sure that you have also applied to universities where you meet or exceed their stated entry requirements.
No, I think you've misunderstood me. To get on the foundation year, you could probably get away with B's and C's.. I was referring to getting on to the optometry where BBB's are unlikely to get you a place, as 'my girls' was asking about it..
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Origami Bullets
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(Original post by alisartaj)
No, I think you've misunderstood me. To get on the foundation year, you could probably get away with B's and C's.. I was referring to getting on to the optometry where BBB's are unlikely to get you a place, as 'my girls' was asking about it..
Ahhh, yep, I did misunderstand you!
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toyladivir
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(Original post by alisartaj)
Hello everyone,

I've just done the life sciences foundation year so if anyone has any questions regarding the course, I'd be happy to answer!
Did you do any preparation before the course started? Is there anything we should be doing eg reading?
Please and Thank you
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alisartaj
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(Original post by toyladivir)
Did you do any preparation before the course started? Is there anything we should be doing eg reading?
Please and Thank you
Hi, erm personally I didn't do any reading whatsoever prior to the course and I did struggle a little because of it.

If anything, I'll probably say do some biology a level reading, AQA exam board to be specific. Apart from that, you should be okay
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toyladivir
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Okay thank you, I hope I can grasps everything and progress. I plan to do cognitive neuroscience and psychology too ) Goodluck
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mhassan
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(Original post by alisartaj)
Hello!
Yes it's possible to progress on to optometry but you'll need to get 25 points out of 30 in the foundation year. Which is roughly equivalent to AAB in maths, biology and chemistry; in all honesty, maths taught is probably just above GCSE level and so very basic and therefore, achieving an A isn't very hard! Whereas to do any other course, like physiology, you'll need 22 points to pass the year and progress which is roughly an ABB or even BBB depending on what you get in which subject (complicated as!)

Yeah its taught at xaverian; like college all over again but living in halls makes up for it to be honest! Besides, you'll have the same access to what the uni offers to every other student. At xaverian, you'll just be with foundation year students, should be about 60 of you split in to two groups. You probably won't get to meet any other life science students unless they're from your halls or something.

Course will be intense. Especially if you want to study optometry; the first semester not really but the second, yes! That's because there's so much work to cover but not enough time. You'll be in every day of the week but 2 or 3 days are likely to be just 2 to 3 hours of lectures and that's it. Free for rest of day! I found it tough because I had not studied any science since GCSE yet I still managed to get 25 points out of 30 (although I did work hard!) But considering you'll have covered most the topics, it shouldn't be too bad!
Hi I am really interested in applying to this foundation course so I can study optometry. I am planning to move out and therefore I feel reluctant as I will be in a lot of debt if it does not work out. Is 25/30 achievable. If I don't achieve this what happens, can I retry. You mentioned it's equiveant to ABB in biology, chemistry and maths. Do you mean A level bio Chem and maths because if so i think I have no chance. I study media, economics and biology, I am predicted BBB but only managed to get a D in biology for AS. Thank you in advance
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VladCa
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Hi!
I'm also interested in applying for the Life Sciences foundation year, for courses beginning in 2014.
And I was wandering, what were your qualifications when you entered the foundation year ? Were the selection criteria rough ? And was your personal statement spectacular, or there is no need for it to be spectacular for the foundation year ?
And another thing, do you think I will have time to work, say 20 hours per week during the foundation year ??
Thanks and sorry for the many questions
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alisartaj
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(Original post by mhassan)
Hi I am really interested in applying to this foundation course so I can study optometry. I am planning to move out and therefore I feel reluctant as I will be in a lot of debt if it does not work out. Is 25/30 achievable. If I don't achieve this what happens, can I retry. You mentioned it's equiveant to ABB in biology, chemistry and maths. Do you mean A level bio Chem and maths because if so i think I have no chance. I study media, economics and biology, I am predicted BBB but only managed to get a D in biology for AS. Thank you in advance

The foundation year students are offered a £5000 bursary of which £1000 is cash bursary and the other £4000 can either taken off as a discount on accommodation or off your fees; which you choose however you want. In other words, your tuition fees could potentially cost only £4000 for the foundation year..

25/30 requires hard work.. it basically works out at about AAB at a-levels.. and to do optom you have to get at least a B in biology if not an A. It's tough but do-able.. I hadn't studied any sciences at a-levels yet I managed it! You can re-sit though in August if needed but the uni will decide whether you're eligible for a re-sit or not.

Yes I meant A-level.. but the maths taught is GCSE level basic maths so an A is very achievable in Maths, in fact, I think almost everyone but one or two got an A in maths last year.. as for Biology, don't compare it to A-level Biology, the foundation year biology is a tad different in that you only study what is necessary and in as much detail as necessary.

Chemistry I found the toughest, the first semester is okay, but the second was tough! You've just gotta work hard in that. Everyone found it tough to be honest.. don't want to scare you or anything, haha!
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alisartaj
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(Original post by VladCa)
Hi!
I'm also interested in applying for the Life Sciences foundation year, for courses beginning in 2014.
And I was wandering, what were your qualifications when you entered the foundation year ? Were the selection criteria rough ? And was your personal statement spectacular, or there is no need for it to be spectacular for the foundation year ?
And another thing, do you think I will have time to work, say 20 hours per week during the foundation year ??
Thanks and sorry for the many questions
Hello!
My qualifications when I applied to the foundation year were three A-levels in Business Studies, ICT and PE and my grades were ABB. The selection criteria isn't tough at all, in fact, most the people on the course get in through clearing but first priority is given to those applying through UCAS; you'll have to attend an interview (an informal chat more than an interview really) where the interviewee will ask why you want to study the course and what motivates you etc,.

My personal statement was decent, nothing special and in all honesty, it doesn't have to be special for the foundation year but they will ask a question or two regarding what you say in your personal statement so be sure to do your homework and come up with some sort of an answer beforehand.

Personally, I would advise against working whilst studying unless you've already studied sciences at A-levels which will make life easier for you as you'll understand the work.

Don't worry about it, any more questions, don't hesitate to ask!
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VladCa
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(Original post by alisartaj)
Hello!
My qualifications when I applied to the foundation year were three A-levels in Business Studies, ICT and PE and my grades were ABB. The selection criteria isn't tough at all, in fact, most the people on the course get in through clearing but first priority is given to those applying through UCAS; you'll have to attend an interview (an informal chat more than an interview really) where the interviewee will ask why you want to study the course and what motivates you etc,.

My personal statement was decent, nothing special and in all honesty, it doesn't have to be special for the foundation year but they will ask a question or two regarding what you say in your personal statement so be sure to do your homework and come up with some sort of an answer beforehand.

Personally, I would advise against working whilst studying unless you've already studied sciences at A-levels which will make life easier for you as you'll understand the work.

Don't worry about it, any more questions, don't hesitate to ask!
Thank you so much for your answer.

I am from a EU state outside the UK, and I will not be able to take any loans except a tuition fee loan, so the only way to support myself is to get a part time job. I really hope I'll manage to handle the course well. That is, if I'll be accepted.

Can you please post your weekly timetable here ?

Thanks again
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