jjake848
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Im thinking about doing computer science at Derby Uni which seems to be more software based (which is my preferred thing)

GCSE ICT grade = A
BTEC IT predicted grade = DDM

So basically, do you think I have a reasonable chance of getting First Class
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bens266
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Depends how hard you work, I am in my first year doing CGP- Computer Game Programming, in the first year, CGP, CS and Internet and Security students all do the same thing, it is pretty fun but it is also very demanding.
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Tish
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(Original post by jjake848)
Im thinking about doing computer science at Derby Uni which seems to be more software based (which is my preferred thing)

GCSE ICT grade = A
BTEC IT predicted grade = DDM

So basically, do you think I have a reasonable chance of getting First Class
Hey I feel like I can give you some constructive words of advice.

I was once in your shoes - well kind of. I did GCSE's then decided to do AS-levels which i failed 2 and passed 2 (A in IT, C in Applied Science, U in P.E and C in General Studies) so I decided to drop out and do a BTEC as it was more vocational. I went on for 2 years and got D*D*D in Software Development and to be honest it was easy (I can understand it being easier or harder depending on the college/institution you go to). I went to Lancaster Uni to do computer science as this uni was nice, good league position but now I regret this particular type of uni heres why:

1. The university is considered ivy league, meaning it was going to be very challenging - but hey I like a challenge but these types of uni's are for people who did A-levels and you should know your stuff about programming no matter how much they say "you don't need prior experience".

2. BTEC doesn't prepare you well enough for ivy league type universities, and even if you go to derby be prepared to put in x3 as much work as you are currently doing in BTEC.

Those are my main reasons. Anyways, I ended up doing first year at uni and pretty much it was a struggle throughout the whole year despite getting really good grades (pretty much got over 80% in all CW across all 6 modules). So exam time comes around and I have 1 week to revise lol, I ended up failing 1 exam, retook it in the summer and passed easily as i had revised better. At the end of first year I got a 2.1. If I was at Derby I probably would've got a first because it's heavily weighted on coursework. At Lancaster it was 6 modules, 6 exams at the end of the year then coursework throughout until exams.

I went onto second year (my current year), and I am failing miserably, it's a huge step-up, you know the comparison people often say about GCSE's to A-Levels well that's what year 1 to year 2 at Lancaster Uni felt like. I also had a bereavement in the family so that didn't help.

Moving on, because of my grades from first year, and myfirst year modules are similar and an excellent personal statement (so i've been told), I've been allowed to re-sit year 2 to start in the 15/16 academic year at Uni of Derby. From what I have read first year there are 2 exams, 2nd and 3rd year there are 0% exams and 100% CW. I think anyone coming from BTEC this would be ideal because you are used to coursework.

What I would strongly recommend is please please, over the summer properly start to learn Java, C and HTML5 from scratch if you don't feel like you've properly covered or understood it in BTEC. People advised me this and I didn't take their advice and I struggled throughout first year. I know it's hard because you're like "if finished college cba to do any work" but it will help in the long run but it's completely up to you. Though everyone's learning abilities are different, there are people here who did BTEC and are coping/passing but 90% of students have A-Levels here.

A really good website for starting HTML5 and server/client-side scripting is CodeCademy. And you can find others out there for Java and C.

Also even though there's next-to-none exams at Derby, it means you will be required to do a lot in your own time for coursework so be prepared for a pretty intense timetable and a lot of work. In a nutshell, if you work hard, play harder if your into social side of things and keep ontop you'll be fine, with prior knowledge trust me you'll be way ahead of other people in first year.

If you have any questions feel free to ask.

Regards,
FifaLass aka Tish
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mohamedm300
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Yo tish, I'm kinda worried about what you said. I'm currently doing btec engineering and I'm predicted d*d*d. I've got an offer from all but one uni.lancaster was gonna be my first pick cUs it's so high and has 60% coursework. I have basic understanding of html css and Java. I don't know what to do Leeds is my first choice but it's almost all exams. Btec has made me very lazy I pretty much go college twice a week and copy the coursework. I use to do all my work but realised no1 does work, is uni that hard for btec students


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username738914
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(Original post by Tish)


Hey I feel like I can give you some constructive words of advice.

I was once in your shoes - well kind of. I did GCSE's then decided to do AS-levels which i failed 2 and passed 2 (A in IT, C in Applied Science, U in P.E and C in General Studies) so I decided to drop out and do a BTEC as it was more vocational. I went on for 2 years and got D*D*D in Software Development and to be honest it was easy (I can understand it being easier or harder depending on the college/institution you go to). I went to Lancaster Uni to do computer science as this uni was nice, good league position but now I regret this particular type of uni heres why:

1. The university is considered ivy league, meaning it was going to be very challenging - but hey I like a challenge but these types of uni's are for people who did A-levels and you should know your stuff about programming no matter how much they say "you don't need prior experience".

2. BTEC doesn't prepare you well enough for ivy league type universities, and even if you go to derby be prepared to put in x3 as much work as you are currently doing in BTEC.

Those are my main reasons. Anyways, I ended up doing first year at uni and pretty much it was a struggle throughout the whole year despite getting really good grades (pretty much got over 80% in all CW across all 6 modules). So exam time comes around and I have 1 week to revise lol, I ended up failing 1 exam, retook it in the summer and passed easily as i had revised better. At the end of first year I got a 2.1. If I was at Derby I probably would've got a first because it's heavily weighted on coursework. At Lancaster it was 6 modules, 6 exams at the end of the year then coursework throughout until exams.

I went onto second year (my current year), and I am failing miserably, it's a huge step-up, you know the comparison people often say about GCSE's to A-Levels well that's what year 1 to year 2 at Lancaster Uni felt like. I also had a bereavement in the family so that didn't help.

Moving on, because of my grades from first year, and myfirst year modules are similar and an excellent personal statement (so i've been told), I've been allowed to re-sit year 2 to start in the 15/16 academic year at Uni of Derby. From what I have read first year there are 2 exams, 2nd and 3rd year there are 0% exams and 100% CW. I think anyone coming from BTEC this would be ideal because you are used to coursework.

What I would strongly recommend is please please, over the summer properly start to learn Java, C and HTML5 from scratch if you don't feel like you've properly covered or understood it in BTEC. People advised me this and I didn't take their advice and I struggled throughout first year. I know it's hard because you're like "if finished college cba to do any work" but it will help in the long run but it's completely up to you. Though everyone's learning abilities are different, there are people here who did BTEC and are coping/passing but 90% of students have A-Levels here.

A really good website for starting HTML5 and server/client-side scripting is CodeCademy. And you can find others out there for Java and C.

Also even though there's next-to-none exams at Derby, it means you will be required to do a lot in your own time for coursework so be prepared for a pretty intense timetable and a lot of work. In a nutshell, if you work hard, play harder if your into social side of things and keep ontop you'll be fine, with prior knowledge trust me you'll be way ahead of other people in first year.

If you have any questions feel free to ask.

Regards,
FifaLass aka Tish
Sorry, but Lancaster is far from an "ivy league" university.

The Ivy League are in the states and are equivalent to Oxbridge, UCL, Imperial etc. In essence, you're stretching Lancaster's brand a bit too far - it is nowhere near as intense as the aforementioned institutions.

It's a great uni, but not quite top top notch.

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Tish
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(Original post by Princepieman)
Sorry, but Lancaster is far from an "ivy league" university.

The Ivy League are in the states and are equivalent to Oxbridge, UCL, Imperial etc. In essence, you're stretching Lancaster's brand a bit too far - it is nowhere near as intense as the aforementioned institutions.

It's a great uni, but not quite top top notch.

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Fair enough, and I completely agree i used the wrong term
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Tish
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(Original post by mohamedm300)
Yo tish, I'm kinda worried about what you said. I'm currently doing btec engineering and I'm predicted d*d*d. I've got an offer from all but one uni.lancaster was gonna be my first pick cUs it's so high and has 60% coursework. I have basic understanding of html css and Java. I don't know what to do Leeds is my first choice but it's almost all exams. Btec has made me very lazy I pretty much go college twice a week and copy the coursework. I use to do all my work but realised no1 does work, is uni that hard for btec students


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What type of engineering is it sorry, software, mechanical or electrical? If its mechanical or electrical I can't really give much advice as I did not study this.

What other universities did you apply to?

And yeah I picked lancaster because it was high up in rankings, scholarship and nice feel as it's very campus oriented in first year when you live on the uni site.

I'm not going to lie but students did this (were lazy ) when I was at college, and they are fine but they are at lower rank universities compared to lancaster. I did it at on a few occasions but they threatened to kick me out when it happened the 3rd time so had to stay in hehe ^_^

Tbh I regret not looking around other unis properly and just thinking of top ranking uni's i've essentially set myself up to fail, I mean it will still be a challenge at Derby, but it will be easier to cope and probably get higher grades from second year on essentially that's the start of when your grades really matter as first year doesn't count.

Imo BTEC wouldn't prepare you for many courses especially exam oriented (such as Leeds - for your course), but it all depends on how challenging the course would be at the uni, I can't imagine engineering being any easier/harder than comp sci at Lancaster.

Yes Lancaster has 60% CW and 40% EXAM, this is generally normal ratio for first year and other years but exams is 100% not my strength, I have to properly revise for like 4 weeks before the exam to actually feel confident to get around 60%. Last year was awful we had so much coursework right up until 1 week before the exam which was crap. But If you think you will be better at coursework then go somewhere like Derby, Northumbria, Coventry they are roughly 90% (or more %) CW over a period of 3 years.

You will definitely need to put the work in if you end up going or you will fail it's a simple as that. If you pass you will struggle in second year by putting in minimal effort. And even though first year doesn't count I think it stays on your transcript when you get degree certificate (not 100% sure though). As much as i struggled I still managed to work hard pretty much throughout the year i must've quoted "i'm going to drop out" at least like 30 times haha. I do wish I transferred uni's before year 2 started would've saved myself a lot of hassle.

Most of my friends/people I knew who failed last year and couldn't get onto second year after failing to pass re-sit exams they came from BTEC backgrounds, but also they did not put in any work and partied literally every week. Now they are in a situation where they had signed a contract lease for a house in town and on year out and have to wait till this July to re-sit them exams they failed after the summer re-sit. And when your not at uni = no student finance so some of em screwed unless you get a job haha.

The course was pretty intense first year it was like around 22 hours of lectures and practical sessions (combined). So say goodbye to social life if you want decent grades.

Think about it this way if you go lancaster/leeds but end up hating/struggling continue and get good grades then you can easily get a transfer, but if you fail u could still transfer but you'd have to re-sit year 1.

Like I said many people had different experiences but generally many many people struggle and find it hard whether BTEC or A-Levels. BTEC students have more advantage as they have programmed before, but a-levels have more advantage in the style of academic learning.

Don't let my experience put you off lancaster, just think at the end of the day you would ideally want a 2.1 or a first grade when u graduate rather risk a 2.2 or lower because u find it hard. I changed uni's because I wouldn't pass and I strongly want good grades building up a portfolio (mainly java and HTML5 projects) in the mean time as i'm hardly ever in uni.

Let me know if you have further Qs,
FifaLass aka Tish
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mohamedm300
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(Original post by Tish)

What type of engineering is it sorry, software, mechanical or electrical? If its mechanical or electrical I can't really give much advice as I did not study this.

What other universities did you apply to?

And yeah I picked lancaster because it was high up in rankings, scholarship and nice feel as it's very campus oriented in first year when you live on the uni site.

I'm not going to lie but students did this (were lazy ) when I was at college, and they are fine but they are at lower rank universities compared to lancaster. I did it at on a few occasions but they threatened to kick me out when it happened the 3rd time so had to stay in hehe ^_^

Tbh I regret not looking around other unis properly and just thinking of top ranking uni's i've essentially set myself up to fail, I mean it will still be a challenge at Derby, but it will be easier to cope and probably get higher grades from second year on essentially that's the start of when your grades really matter as first year doesn't count.

Imo BTEC wouldn't prepare you for many courses especially exam oriented (such as Leeds - for your course), but it all depends on how challenging the course would be at the uni, I can't imagine engineering being any easier/harder than comp sci at Lancaster.

Yes Lancaster has 60% CW and 40% EXAM, this is generally normal ratio for first year and other years but exams is 100% not my strength, I have to properly revise for like 4 weeks before the exam to actually feel confident to get around 60%. Last year was awful we had so much coursework right up until 1 week before the exam which was crap. But If you think you will be better at coursework then go somewhere like Derby, Northumbria, Coventry they are roughly 90% (or more %) CW over a period of 3 years.

You will definitely need to put the work in if you end up going or you will fail it's a simple as that. If you pass you will struggle in second year by putting in minimal effort. And even though first year doesn't count I think it stays on your transcript when you get degree certificate (not 100% sure though). As much as i struggled I still managed to work hard pretty much throughout the year i must've quoted "i'm going to drop out" at least like 30 times haha. I do wish I transferred uni's before year 2 started would've saved myself a lot of hassle.

Most of my friends/people I knew who failed last year and couldn't get onto second year after failing to pass re-sit exams they came from BTEC backgrounds, but also they did not put in any work and partied literally every week. Now they are in a situation where they had signed a contract lease for a house in town and on year out and have to wait till this July to re-sit them exams they failed after the summer re-sit. And when your not at uni = no student finance so some of em screwed unless you get a job haha.

The course was pretty intense first year it was like around 22 hours of lectures and practical sessions (combined). So say goodbye to social life if you want decent grades.

Think about it this way if you go lancaster/leeds but end up hating/struggling continue and get good grades then you can easily get a transfer, but if you fail u could still transfer but you'd have to re-sit year 1.

Like I said many people had different experiences but generally many many people struggle and find it hard whether BTEC or A-Levels. BTEC students have more advantage as they have programmed before, but a-levels have more advantage in the style of academic learning.

Don't let my experience put you off lancaster, just think at the end of the day you would ideally want a 2.1 or a first grade when u graduate rather risk a 2.2 or lower because u find it hard. I changed uni's because I wouldn't pass and I strongly want good grades building up a portfolio (mainly java and HTML5 projects) in the mean time as i'm hardly ever in uni.

Let me know if you have further Qs,
FifaLass aka Tish

Thanks for the reply

Yeah i'm currently studying electrical&elelectronic engineering. Most people in my course are doing the same course in uni but computer science is what i rather do.

My 5 choices are
Leeds(d*dd)
Brunel(d*d*d)
Essex(ddm)
Kent(ddm)
Lancaster(ddm)

Lancaster and kent are really high uni's but have low grades for btec. why is this?

i got a reply for all 4 but still waiting for leeds(interview 25thfeb)

4 out of the 5 uni's require only a c in gcse maths which i have. However leeds want a min of a "B" so im retaking my gcse maths this summer.

My first choice is leeds but im stuck on my back up kent brunel or lancaster. I've been to kent and brunel and really like it however i want to move out so brunel is a probably no. (Brunel is a very btec friendly uni. most people who go there are btec students and the uni isn't that bad roughly top 45)

I've been kent recently and really love the place and they have a really high percentage grads getting a job.

Haven't been to Lancaster i know its a really small place i really cba to go there is like 5 hours to get there.

sorry for my very bad spelling and grammar mistakes xD
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Tish
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(Original post by mohamedm300)
Thanks for the reply

Yeah i'm currently studying electrical&elelectronic engineering. Most people in my course are doing the same course in uni but computer science is what i rather do.

My 5 choices are
Leeds(d*dd)
Brunel(d*d*d)
Essex(ddm)
Kent(ddm)
Lancaster(ddm)

Lancaster and kent are really high uni's but have low grades for btec. why is this?

i got a reply for all 4 but still waiting for leeds(interview 25thfeb)

4 out of the 5 uni's require only a c in gcse maths which i have. However leeds want a min of a "B" so im retaking my gcse maths this summer.

My first choice is leeds but im stuck on my back up kent brunel or lancaster. I've been to kent and brunel and really like it however i want to move out so brunel is a probably no. (Brunel is a very btec friendly uni. most people who go there are btec students and the uni isn't that bad roughly top 45)

I've been kent recently and really love the place and they have a really high percentage grads getting a job.

Haven't been to Lancaster i know its a really small place i really cba to go there is like 5 hours to get there.

sorry for my very bad spelling and grammar mistakes xD
I'm not sure but it could be a ploy of getting students for an example most students who would consider applying there would prob be on chance of getting at least D*DD, im sure both unis offer scholarships etc so it's a nice bit of bonus (but you only get that if you firm it). I'm pretty sure comp sci entered clearing when i first joined lanc so they need to fill up the classes.

Sounds like lanc and brunel is out of ur final 2 then, fk 5 hours is way too far for me hehe. That's good about kent, nice to know you have done more than research

I hope you enjoy wherever you end up going ,
FifaLass aka Tish
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taylorade
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(Original post by Tish)


A really good website for starting HTML5 and server/client-side scripting is CodeCademy. And you can find others out there for Java and C.

If you have any questions feel free to ask.

Regards,
FifaLass aka Tish
Hi Tish, thanks a lot for the advice. I'm not from any computer science related field, I'm getting a degree in communication studies, but I want to teach myself a bit of web design and CodeCademy seems like a great site. I just got my domain and web hosting from 1&1 now I'm creating my first website, which is going to be a mix between an informational website and a blog, dealing with a topic that has been my hobby for many years and that I am very passionate about.

Could you recommend me any good book to learn web design from scratch? I will start with HTML and CSS and eventually want to go on with PHP.

Regards,
Taylor
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cnova
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(Original post by taylorade)
Could you recommend me any good book to learn web design from scratch? I will start with HTML and CSS and eventually want to go on with PHP.
These are the books you want, they come as a package deal at a decent price of £24.13

Books
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Ryanthom100
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#12
(Original post by Tish)

Hey I feel like I can give you some constructive words of advice.

I was once in your shoes - well kind of. I did GCSE's then decided to do AS-levels which i failed 2 and passed 2 (A in IT, C in Applied Science, U in P.E and C in General Studies) so I decided to drop out and do a BTEC as it was more vocational. I went on for 2 years and got D*D*D in Software Development and to be honest it was easy (I can understand it being easier or harder depending on the college/institution you go to). I went to Lancaster Uni to do computer science as this uni was nice, good league position but now I regret this particular type of uni heres why:

1. The university is considered ivy league, meaning it was going to be very challenging - but hey I like a challenge but these types of uni's are for people who did A-levels and you should know your stuff about programming no matter how much they say "you don't need prior experience".

2. BTEC doesn't prepare you well enough for ivy league type universities, and even if you go to derby be prepared to put in x3 as much work as you are currently doing in BTEC.

Those are my main reasons. Anyways, I ended up doing first year at uni and pretty much it was a struggle throughout the whole year despite getting really good grades (pretty much got over 80% in all CW across all 6 modules). So exam time comes around and I have 1 week to revise lol, I ended up failing 1 exam, retook it in the summer and passed easily as i had revised better. At the end of first year I got a 2.1. If I was at Derby I probably would've got a first because it's heavily weighted on coursework. At Lancaster it was 6 modules, 6 exams at the end of the year then coursework throughout until exams.

I went onto second year (my current year), and I am failing miserably, it's a huge step-up, you know the comparison people often say about GCSE's to A-Levels well that's what year 1 to year 2 at Lancaster Uni felt like. I also had a bereavement in the family so that didn't help.

Moving on, because of my grades from first year, and myfirst year modules are similar and an excellent personal statement (so i've been told), I've been allowed to re-sit year 2 to start in the 15/16 academic year at Uni of Derby. From what I have read first year there are 2 exams, 2nd and 3rd year there are 0% exams and 100% CW. I think anyone coming from BTEC this would be ideal because you are used to coursework.

What I would strongly recommend is please please, over the summer properly start to learn Java, C and HTML5 from scratch if you don't feel like you've properly covered or understood it in BTEC. People advised me this and I didn't take their advice and I struggled throughout first year. I know it's hard because you're like "if finished college cba to do any work" but it will help in the long run but it's completely up to you. Though everyone's learning abilities are different, there are people here who did BTEC and are coping/passing but 90% of students have A-Levels here.

A really good website for starting HTML5 and server/client-side scripting is CodeCademy. And you can find others out there for Java and C.

Also even though there's next-to-none exams at Derby, it means you will be required to do a lot in your own time for coursework so be prepared for a pretty intense timetable and a lot of work. In a nutshell, if you work hard, play harder if your into social side of things and keep ontop you'll be fine, with prior knowledge trust me you'll be way ahead of other people in first year.

If you have any questions feel free to ask.

Regards,
FifaLass aka Tish
Hi tish are u still around? I am looking to do CS at Lancaster. I'm doing a btec atm on games/software development. I'm a passionate coder and I love it (I write in c++). However I am curious about other topics in computing aswell and I feel that a CS degree would be better. I want to work as a software engineer for Google (or a company like apple etc) when I'm older and Lancaster is the highest ranked uni I can go to. Should I go for it?
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Starry2012
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Ryan I'm in a similar situation I've got an offer for CS with industrial experience from Lancaster I'm doing a btec in ICT predicted triple D* but I'm not good at coding. I'm quite scared I'll struggle and flop I dunno how quick I'll pick up coding but I'll put in as much effort as I need
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Ryanthom100
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(Original post by Starry2012)
Ryan I'm in a similar situation I've got an offer for CS with industrial experience from Lancaster I'm doing a btec in ICT predicted triple D* but I'm not good at coding. I'm quite scared I'll struggle and flop I dunno how quick I'll pick up coding but I'll put in as much effort as I need
U have an offer already, lucky lol, my teacher is kinda useless so he will probably send it off in 2 weeks Coding is quite simple tbh, (but it gets harder as u go along) i advise using sololearn first, learn the concepts and beginner level code stuff of java and c. Then once u feel confident start creating programs, e.g. a connect 4 game etc. U will most likely have to research different code to use for a different function of ur game to work. Putting what u learnt into practice is key in programming. I advise learning java and c as that is what we will learn in there CS course. Who knows, maybe i will see u at Lancaster
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Starry2012
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Aww haha yes I hope so! I'm just worried I won't pick up stuff quick enough compared to the a level lot, I emailed the CS department if they could tell me any discrete maths resources relevant to the course so once I get the time I'll start teaching myself the maths and coding somehow it'll take some getting used to though
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Ryanthom100
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(Original post by Starry2012)
Aww haha yes I hope so! I'm just worried I won't pick up stuff quick enough compared to the a level lot, I emailed the CS department if they could tell me any discrete maths resources relevant to the course so once I get the time I'll start teaching myself the maths and coding somehow it'll take some getting used to though
Yeah the maths will be the hardest part tbh. The coding should be simple. I don't know the mathematics we would need, I feel that calculus comes into a CS degree tho, and easy stuff like Pythagoras etc aswell. However this is an assumption. Maths related deeply to algorithms will be key I would of thought.
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luciferhf
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(Original post by Ryanthom100)
Yeah the maths will be the hardest part tbh. The coding should be simple. I don't know the mathematics we would need, I feel that calculus comes into a CS degree tho, and easy stuff like Pythagoras etc aswell. However this is an assumption. Maths related deeply to algorithms will be key I would of thought.
Discrete mathematics - set theory, combinatorics, graph theory etc.
Calculus - differentiation / integration etc
+ much more
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Ryanthom100
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(Original post by luciferhf)
Discrete mathematics - set theory, combinatorics, graph theory etc.
Calculus - differentiation / integration etc
+ much more
idk too much about this stuff lol, I just know it's not uncommon for computer science degrees to have calculus in them
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luciferhf
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(Original post by Ryanthom100)
idk too much about this stuff lol, I just know it's not uncommon for computer science degrees to have calculus in them
You will be fine, as long as your University does not require Maths there is not much need to worry. However I must add that A Level Mathematics is very useful for CS at University.
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Ryanthom100
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(Original post by luciferhf)
You will be fine, as long as your University does not require Maths there is not much need to worry. However I must add that A Level Mathematics is very useful for CS at University.
that's why higher universities want a level maths I guess. maybe they make the modules more maths based and cut out a bit of the programming. I heard that this is what Oxford do. They expect u to self learn programming while they teach u other stuff.
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Feeling behind at school/college? What is the best thing your teachers could to help you catch up?

Extra compulsory independent learning activities (eg, homework tasks) (0)
0%
Run extra compulsory lessons or workshops (4)
22.22%
Focus on making the normal lesson time with them as high quality as possible (3)
16.67%
Focus on making the normal learning resources as high quality/accessible as possible (2)
11.11%
Provide extra optional activities, lessons and/or workshops (7)
38.89%
Assess students, decide who needs extra support and focus on these students (2)
11.11%

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