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    This thread is for people who are considering applying to Cambridge upon receipt of their A2 results or for those who decide to wait a year to apply due to less than perfect AS results/UMS averages.
    Post here with questions and advice, where appropriate.
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    UMS will still be quite important because, say for instance all your grades were borderline and other candidates were getting very high UMS/modular results at AS, despite having your grades already their AS results will indicate they are likely to outperform you therefore UMS/modular results still play a part in the admissions process. If it didn't it wouldn't be fair on the other candidates still completing their A-Levels (in my eyes) just because they haven't finished them.
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    (Original post by hogwartian1993)
    UMS will still be quite important because, say for instance all your grades were borderline and other candidates were getting very high UMS/modular results at AS, despite having your grades already their AS results will indicate they are likely to outperform you therefore UMS/modular results still play a part in the admissions process. If it didn't it wouldn't be fair on the other candidates still completing their A-Levels (in my eyes) just because they haven't finished them.
    I see, so A*s won't necessarily mitigate mid As at AS then?
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    (Original post by keromedic)
    I see, so A*s won't necessarily mitigate mid As at AS then?
    There's no definitive answer, but from when I applied thats the mentality I had.
    I just looked at each module. See, I was a gap year applicant but I had extenuating circumstances, thus massively screwed up my History coursework due to not having the books etc and got a 'D'. Every other one of my modules (apart from a B in one module for my English AS) was an 'A'. I got an unconditional and I've resat the 'D' and its gone up to an 'A'. From my modules they were able to see that the 'D' was an anomaly. There's a reason they request UMS/modular results. My advice would be don't get complacent with modules, and just use every module as a mini result that will hold some proper weight. As I said, if it didn't matter they wouldn't ask.
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    (Original post by hogwartian1993)
    There's no definitive answer, but from when I applied thats the mentality I had.
    I just looked at each module. See, I was a gap year applicant but I had extenuating circumstances, thus massively screwed up my History coursework due to not having the books etc and got a 'D'. Every other one of my modules (apart from a B in one module for my English AS) was an 'A'. I got an unconditional and I've resat the 'D' and its gone up to an 'A'. From my modules they were able to see that the 'D' was an anomaly. There's a reason they request UMS/modular results. My advice would be don't get complacent with modules, and just use every module as a mini result that will hold some proper weight. As I said, if it didn't matter they wouldn't ask.
    I see. My extenuating circumstances are a bit different but I guess I'll just hope for the best. I'll have to aim for close to 100% in each module next yr then!!
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    (Original post by hogwartian1993)
    There's no definitive answer, but from when I applied thats the mentality I had.
    I just looked at each module. See, I was a gap year applicant but I had extenuating circumstances, thus massively screwed up my History coursework due to not having the books etc and got a 'D'. Every other one of my modules (apart from a B in one module for my English AS) was an 'A'. I got an unconditional and I've resat the 'D' and its gone up to an 'A'. From my modules they were able to see that the 'D' was an anomaly. There's a reason they request UMS/modular results. My advice would be don't get complacent with modules, and just use every module as a mini result that will hold some proper weight. As I said, if it didn't matter they wouldn't ask.
    I have no extens, but am also a gap year applicant - may I ask which subject you applied for?

    I have a very large number of module results as I took 4 A2s (A*A*AA) and one of them was Maths, with 3 extra Maths modules for an AS in Further, and I have a bit of a mixed bag, which means my averages go all over the place depending on where averages are taken. I have an 80% average for History at AS, but 100% at A2; 95% for Latin at AS, 80% at A2; and my Maths modules have been moved around no end, spanning from an 100 to a 62. Actually, I'm pretty sure they'll draw from that that I'm inconsistent in everything except English, which is what I'd be applying for! I originally asked this question in the main grades thread as depending on what emphasis is placed on UMS for post-A2 it does kind of alter my grade profile. I would be interested in any post-A2 applicants who can give me a better idea of how we're assessed.
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    (Original post by SixteenHundred)
    I have no extens, but am also a gap year applicant - may I ask which subject you applied for?

    I have a very large number of module results as I took 4 A2s (A*A*AA) and one of them was Maths, with 3 extra Maths modules for an AS in Further, and I have a bit of a mixed bag, which means my averages go all over the place depending on where averages are taken. I have an 80% average for History at AS, but 100% at A2; 95% for Latin at AS, 80% at A2; and my Maths modules have been moved around no end, spanning from an 100 to a 62. Actually, I'm pretty sure they'll draw from that that I'm inconsistent in everything except English, which is what I'd be applying for! I originally asked this question in the main grades thread as depending on what emphasis is placed on UMS for post-A2 it does kind of alter my grade profile. I would be interested in any post-A2 applicants who can give me a better idea of how we're assessed.
    The rules are fairly clear for English. They will average your best three subjects. Maths will only ever count as one subject, they will average all your maths modules. They ignore AS resits in yr 13 so your best subjects will be whichever ones are your best yr 12 AS and yr 13 A2 UMS combination. I assume if you have managed A*A*A that you will have an average somewhere around 90% or better. Given that A*A*A is considered competitive for Arts and if your best subject is English you must stand a reasonable chance provided that you interview well.
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    (Original post by Oromis263)
    ...


    Hey, iirc you did what I'm going to be doing, except for Natural Science.
    What advice were you given, on the subject/
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    (Original post by Colmans)
    The rules are fairly clear for English. They will average your best three subjects. Maths will only ever count as one subject, they will average all your maths modules. They ignore AS resits in yr 13 so your best subjects will be whichever ones are your best yr 12 AS and yr 13 A2 UMS combination. I assume if you have managed A*A*A that you will have an average somewhere around 90% or better. Given that A*A*A is considered competitive for Arts and if your best subject is English you must stand a reasonable chance provided that you interview well.
    I see. I didn't realise that AS resits were ignored in yr13!!
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      (Original post by keromedic)
      Hey, iirc you did what I'm going to be doing, except for Natural Science.
      What advice were you given, on the subject/
      I would say the UMS breakdown is fairly important; moreover, showing an improvement is perhaps amongst the best things you can do. A2 modules are the most recent, and thus give the most accurate representation. I mean, comparatively, my AS UMS scores wouldn't have secured me an offer, whereas my A2 scores were significantly better.
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      (Original post by Oromis263)
      I would say the UMS breakdown is fairly important; moreover, showing an improvement is perhaps amongst the best things you can do. A2 modules are the most recent, and thus give the most accurate representation. I mean, comparatively, my AS UMS scores wouldn't have secured me an offer, whereas my A2 scores were significantly better.
      Thanks, that's reassuring. Even with very high scores, I've destroyed the hope of attaining a high average like 98%, but I can certainly show improvement.
      Did you resit anything?
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        (Original post by keromedic)
        Thanks, that's reassuring. Even with very high scores, I've destroyed the hope of attaining a high average like 98%, but I can certainly show improvement.
        Did you resit anything?
        I resat a physics module and FP2.
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        (Original post by Colmans)
        The rules are fairly clear for English. They will average your best three subjects. Maths will only ever count as one subject, they will average all your maths modules. They ignore AS resits in yr 13 so your best subjects will be whichever ones are your best yr 12 AS and yr 13 A2 UMS combination. I assume if you have managed A*A*A that you will have an average somewhere around 90% or better. Given that A*A*A is considered competitive for Arts and if your best subject is English you must stand a reasonable chance provided that you interview well.

        I've seen this stated on the forums a couple of times but not confirmed by Cambridge. Thankfully I only have one but surely they wouldn't discount the fact that on the resit I scored 100% UMS. Particularly considering the fact that the original result was clearly an anomaly among Stronger AS scores.


        Also, does anyone know the stance to resitting A2 January modules in June (in terms of UMS calculations)?


        Thanks
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        (Original post by Tons of Sobs)
        I've seen this stated on the forums a couple of times but not confirmed by Cambridge. Thankfully I only have one but surely they wouldn't discount the fact that on the resit I scored 100% UMS. Particularly considering the fact that the original result was clearly an anomaly among Stronger AS scores.


        Also, does anyone know the stance to resitting A2 January modules in June (in terms of UMS calculations)?


        Thanks
        The issue about retaken modules is this: (From the winter pooling handbook)

        For pre-qualification applicants who have completed one or two A Levels alongside AS Level qualifications, all modules taken must be counted. The only exception is for January Year 12 modules which are re-sat in June of Year 12, where the better results count.



        You are right that a retaken module which shows a large jump from an initial probable rogue causes little concern compared with a number of retaken modules showing only a marginal improvement. However this is at a later stage of the process when they are comparing your entire application-paper record, interview, tests PS etc with another candidate to make the final choice.

        It is quite clear that admission to Cambridge is not a formulaic process and just because your UMS average ranking is higher or lower than another candidate you cannot predict which one of you will get an offer. All we can say is that the higher the average the better your chances and for lower scores there comes a point where your chances are slim. We can guess from experience where that point comes but nobody can say exactly as we do not know the entire context of anybody's achievements.
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        Thanks for your reply
        (Original post by Colmans)
        The issue about retaken modules is this: (From the winter pooling handbook)

        For pre-qualification applicants who have completed one or two A Levels alongside AS Level qualifications, all modules taken must be counted. The only exception is for January Year 12 modules which are re-sat in June of Year 12, where the better results count.



        You are right that a retaken module which shows a large jump from an initial probable rogue causes little concern compared with a number of retaken modules showing only a marginal improvement. However this is at a later stage of the process when they are comparing your entire application-paper record, interview, tests PS etc with another candidate to make the final choice.
        I'd hope to extrapolate this to year 13 A2 Jan/June modules... but this might not be the case
        (Original post by Colmans)
        It is quite clear that admission to Cambridge is not a formulaic process and just because your UMS average ranking is higher or lower than another candidate you cannot predict which one of you will get an offer. All we can say is that the higher the average the better your chances and for lower scores there comes a point where your chances are slim. We can guess from experience where that point comes but nobody can say exactly as we do not know the entire context of anybody's achievements.
        Thanks, this is of course comforting but it'd be nice to know if a bunch of resits (which weren't especially bad first time round and then very strong on second time) don't hinder a fair comparison for the rest of the application (PS, interview etc.). That was poorly phrased... I guess what I mean to say is that I hope the resits don't automatically place a big black mark over the application. And since I took so many modules they make up a fairly small percentage of the overall scores... I think I still would have got 4A*s without them
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        Cambridge admissions tutors are not, on the whole, daft. They understand that people have occasional off days and they understand that some marking is rather dodgy. They state that they are concerned about people who need a number of resist to achieve a tolerable mark as Cambridge tripos exams are a one shot effort. But no single resit (or even two) would ever be a deal breaker in the midst of an otherwise strong application. I resat one 82 module in the degree I applied for and didn't even have the result when I got the offer. (I went on to get 100 which I like to think shows the 82 was the rogue, but I suppose it could be the 100!)
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        What would you advise a would-be bio natsci year 12 whose results were "OK" but an underachievement compared to expectations in bio and chem (85 and 87 UMS respectively) and a rogue B (1 UMS off an A) in maths + B in music. The maths will be resat in November (cie board international student).

        I know full well what my daughter is capable of and am thinking that there is perhaps little point in her applying now with those UMS, but she could do this in October of her 2014 gap year, provided A2 results are up to scratch to get A*A*A (or even 3 A*). It would ensure that she can just concentrate on getting those results rather than stressing about all the application process, getting an interview or not, as well as having gained in maturity, been able to have done more and read more widely before applying, etc.

        What do you think, it sounds from this thread that it's not unheard of for students to do this? Can anyone advise how well/badly received doing this may be by Cambridge? And how would a candidate with full A2 results be compared to a year 12 applying with only their AS and predictions? would the full A level candidate be required to have achieved higher grades than the AS student's predictions? Also I am assuming the process would be exactly the same, other than the offer in January would be unconditional, is that correct?

        If she were to have a go this year and got rejected without an offer (or even without an interview), could she then apply a second time in October 2014?

        Sorry for all the questions, just wanting to get all the facts in order to make the right decision.

        Thank you
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        (Original post by cora06140)
        What would you advise a would-be bio natsci year 12 whose results were "OK" but an underachievement compared to expectations in bio and chem (85 and 87 UMS respectively) and a rogue B (1 UMS off an A) in maths + B in music. The maths will be resat in November (cie board international student).

        I know full well what my daughter is capable of and am thinking that there is perhaps little point in her applying now with those UMS, but she could do this in October of her 2014 gap year, provided A2 results are up to scratch to get A*A*A (or even 3 A*). It would ensure that she can just concentrate on getting those results rather than stressing about all the application process, getting an interview or not, as well as having gained in maturity, been able to have done more and read more widely before applying, etc.

        What do you think, it sounds from this thread that it's not unheard of for students to do this? Can anyone advise how well/badly received doing this may be by Cambridge? And how would a candidate with full A2 results be compared to a year 12 applying with only their AS and predictions? would the full A level candidate be required to have achieved higher grades than the AS student's predictions? Also I am assuming the process would be exactly the same, other than the offer in January would be unconditional, is that correct?

        If she were to have a go this year and got rejected without an offer (or even without an interview), could she then apply a second time in October 2014?

        Sorry for all the questions, just wanting to get all the facts in order to make the right decision.

        Thank you
        I think she would not be called for interview this year with a science average of 83.6%
        To be competitive post qualification you really need A*A*A* for NatSci.
        http://www.admin.cam.ac.uk/offices/a...erformance.pdf (Look at the table at the end).

        I would suggest she applies elsewhere & sees what she gets, then if she does perform nearer your expectations she could always withdraw and apply GAP year knowing that she would be bound to get several UCL/Imperial/Durham/Bristol type offers with A*A*+

        Universities don't mind reapplications nor do they mind if people withdraw and reapply to have a first or second go at Oxbridge.
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        Thanks for the advice, that's very useful!
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        (Original post by keromedic)
        This thread is for people who are considering applying to Cambridge upon receipt of their A2 results or for those who decide to wait a year to apply due to less than perfect AS results/UMS averages.
        Post here with questions and advice, where appropriate.
        Just thought I'd briefly say that I applied to Cambridge for Archaeology and anthropology (now changed to HSPS) post-A2, during my gap year, and the whole University application process was so nice and stress-free. You don't worry about school work or meeting an offer. I also felt much more 'ready' for university after an interesting year out of education. I did better in my A2s than my ASs (from 95% to 98% averages), and bolstered my application by doing an 'advanced extension award' as well as arranging relevant work experience, and I think my application was much stronger than it would have been the year before. I got in and had an amazing three years.

        However I think its important that you apply for more realistic places (where you have a very high chance of getting a place) that you would be very happy with should you not get in to Cambridge. For me that was LSE and Edinburgh.

        Good luck!

        p.s. I think in general if you do better at A2 than AS and apply during your gap year you will probably be in a stronger position than someone who applied after AS but had not yet shown an upward trajectory - it means the admissions people don't have to gamble. Some subjects/colleges also like people to have gap years provided they are filled with good stuff.
       
       
       
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