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Fast Tracking Three A-Levels: Please Help? Need Advice. Watch

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    Hey guys. I'm a seventeen year old Iraqi-American currently living in Syria. I have just done my igcses and was on the verge of deciding what to do for my final year of school. My school here in Syria does the igcse examinations a year later than the uk so I'll have to do my A-Levels in one year. Also to put a greater strain on things, we hardly have any teachers here and I'll have to self study two of the three A-Levels I plan on doing.

    I want to do; Maths,History & Economics. I can get a great Maths teacher and can find someone to teach me AS Economics however I’ll be left on my own for A2 Economics & all of History.
    I know most of you probably think I’m crazy for doing this all in one year but I really am left with no choice. I am a hardworker and I’m willing to put all the effort in and make sacrifices to obtain good grades. Realistically speaking, is this possible? I’m thinking of signing up with the National Extension College or Oxford Online Learning for distance learning fast track A-levels.

    Any advice or words of motivation or appreciated guys. Thank you for taking the time to read this.
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    Bump. :l
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    Certainly go for it.

    I did 4 A-Levels through self study, without any teachers or assistance through correspondence colleges such as NEC.

    By concentrating on what was expected of me for the exams using revision guides and the subject guides published by the exam produces, I found it less work than GCSE (which I had done the traditional manner at school) as I was focused on "learning" rather than on the more usu less school tasks such as homework. But if you struggle at that sort of "read a book and learn" style you may find it more work.
    It certainly requires more dedication than normal. People get into a routine with school and work and things because you HAVE to go. But when you are leading your study yourself, you're will-power really comes into it. There is the benefit that if you fancy a day off, you can probably allow yourself one. But if you're not strict, that soon becomes a few weeks or even a month off and you're left with a mountain to climb with you're work when you get back to it.

    You say you are self studying: do you have a school that is supportive of this?
    I only ask, as here in the UK you have to apply to sit the exams with the school as an external candidate. I found while most were happy to have external candidates for exams, none were willing to mark coursework: so I had to study courses which were graded 100% on exams.
    It would be worth checking before you start that the subjects you are looking to study are either 100% exam, or that the school you wish to sit you exams at is also willing to mark coursework.

    Good luck
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    Thank you so much for your reply!

    Yes, I have a school here in my city that can administer the exams in May/June! Also if I sign up for one of the distance learning programs I had heard that your tutors mark your coursework for you?
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    (Original post by Abdo332)
    Also if I sign up for one of the distance learning programs I had heard that your tutors mark your coursework for you?
    They didn't when i was looking but that was 4-5 years ago so it's definitely worth contacting them to see.
    I wanted to do A-Level History and couldn't because it was coursework assessed -a real dissapointment for me as I wanted to study history at uni.

    Exams generally have to be booked a good few months in advanced, so you're best to use this time now to get organised and prepared with what you want to study and where - saves a lot of panic and stress later.
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    (Original post by Abdo332)
    Thank you so much for your reply!

    Yes, I have a school here in my city that can administer the exams in May/June! Also if I sign up for one of the distance learning programs I had heard that your tutors mark your coursework for you?
    In general the coursework has to be marked by the exam centre that enters you for the coursework and generally distance learning providers are not exam centres. There is no coursework for Maths (or at least you can avoid it) and none for Economics. History only has it at A2. AQA will mark coursework for external candidates as long as someone (e.g. an online tutor) will verify it as your own work - but I'm not sure you can take AQA exams abroad. I think NEC used to have an arrangement with Edexcel where they could make the entries and mark the work for coursework - I don't know if they still do. You need to check that you have a workable plan before you sign up for anything.

    p.s. The entry deadline for next summer is 21 February at the exam board, the centre will want to sort out the details a fair bit earlier.
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    Many international qualifications are designed without any coursework elements due to these issues.
    My brother's school did International GCSEs rather than the standard ones - they are made for the international market so are marked entirely on exams with no coursework. His school chose them as supposedly they have a better reputation than the GCSE/Bac stuff standard state schools put you forward for.

    With any luck, the International A-Level is designed in the same way.
 
 
 
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