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    Hi all,

    Anyone else doing any courses privately? I'll be doing all of mine privately having dropped out of school for a long list of reasons. If worst comes to worst I'll consider enrolling back in to Year 12 (and having a watermelon-sized headstart). Have not decided on courses yet, but including a couple soft subjects I'm looking to shoulder 5 or 6.

    Will I be on a backfoot at all when I'm applying to university, against a hypothetical someone with the same grades and profile but schooled? I'm still shooting for Oxbridge, but will they inquire about my circumstances?
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    No, it doesn't matter if you're a private candidate. Good luck with your studies .
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    (Original post by Protesin)
    Hi all,

    Anyone else doing any courses privately? I'll be doing all of mine privately having dropped out of school for a long list of reasons. If worst comes to worst I'll consider enrolling back in to Year 12 (and having a watermelon-sized headstart). Have not decided on courses yet, but including a couple soft subjects I'm looking to shoulder 5 or 6.

    Will I be on a backfoot at all when I'm applying to university, against a hypothetical someone with the same grades and profile but schooled? I'm still shooting for Oxbridge, but will they inquire about my circumstances?
    Do you mean self-teaching and taking exams privately? Because that's what I'm doing and I applied to university so I can share my experience.
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    I'm self-teaching 2 AS-levels and have been regretting it ever since I booked myself in for exams as an external candidate for the summer. It takes a lot of motivation and time. I'm actually considering quitting my job just to concentrate on my studies.
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    (Original post by undine_monty)
    Do you mean self-teaching and taking exams privately? Because that's what I'm doing and I applied to university so I can share my experience.
    Yes please! Do they ask?

    (Original post by Philip-flop)
    I'm self-teaching 2 AS-levels and have been regretting it ever since I booked myself in for exams as an external candidate for the summer. It takes a lot of motivation and time. I'm actually considering quitting my job just to concentrate on my studies.
    Sorry to hear. It's a different matter when you've dropped out -- wouldn't dream of doing anything privately alongside school and work.
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    [QUOTE=Protesin;63335179]Yes please! Do they ask?

    I dropped out as well, 2 months into year 12 at a sixth form and self taught for the rest of yr 12. I got AS grades I was happy with, so I carried on self teaching for yr 13 as well.

    I had almost finished my UCAS application in November and I needed an academic reference. I didn't think I'd be remembered at my sixth form because I wasn't there long and I didn't make much of an impact so I asked my old history teacher from yr 11 and he happily gave me one. You didn't ask about the reference but I think its still useful to know.

    So far I have 4 offers from Birmingham, Bath, Sussex and Warwick for Sociology. Only Birmingham didn't ask for any further information.

    Warwick asked me for 'official verification' of my GCSE Maths and English Lang grades. Bath & Surrey (don't have an offer from Surrey yet) asked me for my predicted grades. I don't have any because I self teach so Bath asked me to provide grades I expect to achieve. Surrey haven't got back to me yet on the predicted grades issue.

    You didn't ask about the reference or predicted grades issue but I though it was helpful to know. You could always get a tutor to sort out those requirements though if you don't have one already.

    Sussex and Surrey asked what subjects I'm currently doing. Sussex was the only one who asked why I self teach. I gave them a long answer about how I felt like the teachers were going through the topics too quick and I couldn't keep up. I also never understood the work so I would spend much of my hours not in school, studying trying to understand the work better.I also mentioned how I'd become more independent, better at managing my time etc etc. Sussex lowered the entry requirement for the course I applied for.

    The universities are definitely very thorough with your application when you self teach from my experience because its not really common and there are some bits of info missing from your application that they unis need to know about. They may or may not ask why you do it, just depends on the admissions team, the course etc etc. It depends on a lot of things.

    Hope this was helpful
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    (Original post by undine_monty)
    x
    And the first rep goes to Undine Monty! Thanks a bunch for that.

    You'd just need a reference from the one teacher then?
    I think I may skip AS and do the 2 year courses as my sixth form intended, I'm assuming that's equally possible.
    Did you sit a science? If so how did you sit the ISA or practical exam? Still looking into that.
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    (Original post by Protesin)
    And the first rep goes to Undine Monty! Thanks a bunch for that.

    You'd just need a reference from the one teacher then?
    I think I may skip AS and do the 2 year courses as my sixth form intended, I'm assuming that's equally possible.
    Did you sit a science? If so how did you sit the ISA or practical exam? Still looking into that.
    Thanks

    Yeah, one teacher is enough.

    You can't skip AS. An A-level is made up of AS in year 12 and A2 in year 13 typically. With the new system, your AS grade doesn't count towards your final A-level grade but you still have to do it to move onto A2. Basically an A-Level is a 2 year course.

    I never did a science but if you were to do it as a private candidate, you would have to register at an exam centre that has the facilities to do science practicals and all the equipment you need would be sorted out for you. You would have to do the ISAs and practical exams at a set time before the deadline.
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    (Original post by Protesin)
    Will I be on a backfoot at all when I'm applying to university, against a hypothetical someone with the same grades and profile but schooled? I'm still shooting for Oxbridge, but will they inquire about my circumstances?
    Dropped out of school, self-taught an accelerated version of A-Levels in Maths, Further Maths and Physics and currently hold offers for Maths at Cambridge, Warwick, Imperial and UCL. Anything in particular that you'd like to ask?
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    (Original post by undine_monty)
    You can't skip AS. An A-level is made up of AS in year 12 and A2 in year 13 typically. With the new system, your AS grade doesn't count towards your final A-level grade but you still have to do it to move onto A2. Basically an A-Level is a 2 year course.
    What I meant to say was that I'd skip the first-year exams but not the content, so all exams (including AS material) would be at the end of the 2 years. From what you're saying this sounds like it's the norm now anyways.
    Thanks again!

    (Original post by Zacken)
    Dropped out of school, self-taught an accelerated version of A-Levels in Maths, Further Maths and Physics and currently hold offers for Maths at Cambridge, Warwick, Imperial and UCL. Anything in particular that you'd like to ask?
    That's amazing. *slow clap* Would just like to build on Undine Monty's experience.
    Did any of those inquire about you dropping out or ask anything atypical?
    Did you feel at a backfoot against other students?
    Were the course requirements changed in response to your circumstances?
    Did you do an ISA? How did it go? Would be difficult to brush up on experimental procedure in your own time but I suppose I'd talk to a friend.
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    (Original post by Protesin)
    Hi all,

    Anyone else doing any courses privately? I'll be doing all of mine privately having dropped out of school for a long list of reasons. If worst comes to worst I'll consider enrolling back in to Year 12 (and having a watermelon-sized headstart). Have not decided on courses yet, but including a couple soft subjects I'm looking to shoulder 5 or 6.

    Will I be on a backfoot at all when I'm applying to university, against a hypothetical someone with the same grades and profile but schooled? I'm still shooting for Oxbridge, but will they inquire about my circumstances?
    I've sat ten IGCSEs and four AS levels in the last eighteen months, and am about to do my A2s, all as an external candidate.

    I think of anything you will be on the front foot against somebody with the same grades but schooled. Or at least you definitely won't be disadvantaged. I got an offer from Oxford, and I think they really liked my 'story'.
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    (Original post by MouseyBrown)
    I've sat ten IGCSEs and four AS levels in the last eighteen months, and am about to do my A2s, all as an external candidate.

    I think of anything you will be on the front foot against somebody with the same grades but schooled. Or at least you definitely won't be disadvantaged. I got an offer from Oxford, and I think they really liked my 'story'.
    Great. Would you mind sharing your story?
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    (Original post by Protesin)
    What I meant to say was that I'd skip the first-year exams but not the content, so all exams (including AS material) would be at the end of the 2 years. From what you're saying this sounds like it's the norm now anyways.
    Thanks again!
    Oh, that's fine then. More revision time I guess
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    (Original post by Protesin)
    That's amazing. *slow clap* Would just like to build on Undine Monty's experience.
    Did any of those inquire about you dropping out or ask anything atypical?
    No. They only cared about how good I was at maths. That was all that was tested and asked at interview. The SAQ gave me a chance to explain my circumstances but I doubt they cared at all.

    Did you feel at a backfoot against other students?
    No. I felt quite liberated by not having to go through the rigid education style of my school and was able to study for 3 A-Levels in three months without the hindrances of teachers or stupid school crap.

    Were the course requirements changed in response to your circumstances?
    They were very clear in conveying the fact that they couldn't care less about my situation; I'm self teaching? It's my own choice. They don't care. They thought I was worth an interview based on my academics, so they gave me one, they collected academic information and gave me an offer based on that - same typical offer (A*A*A + I, I in STEP II, III). No special considerations.

    Did you do an ISA? How did it go? Would be difficult to brush up on experimental procedure in your own time but I suppose I'd talk to a friend.
    I'm an international, so my physics 'practical units' is the alternative to practical i.e: written component instead of practical. It required very little work, I only learnt and revised for it in the three days upcoming to the actual exam.
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    (Original post by Protesin)
    Great. Would you mind sharing your story?
    I've done this as a mature student. But generally I mean to study from home etc and sit your exams as a private candidate probably means you are highly motivated, and that you can organise and think for yourself.

    Obviously it depends on your exam results and all the rest of it, but my point basically is that you should not worry at all about being disadvantaged by how you're studying.
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    Scottish qualification results got messed up last year due to my coursework being handed in late by teachers (thus disqualifying 20-40% of my grades depending on the subject), missed my firm offer at Notts.

    I decided against going to Reading (my insurance at the time) and instead signed myself up for self teaching A-level Maths, Further Maths and Economics in a year which means 16 exams this exam period.

    Applied to Oxford, Warwick, UCL, Nottingham and Bristol with a reference that explained what happened and gave proof of my ability (mock results), ended up with offers from Warwick, UCL, and Nottingham; a rejection from Oxford (due to a low admissions test score); a pending decision from Bristol.

    Sure, it's been tough and I've been working 9-12 hours a day since August, but it's worth it in the end really. You have to believe in yourself and just put in the graft when necessary.

    OP, I'm sure you'll be fine.

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    I'm on a gap year & resitting A level Maths/Physics exams.

    My college told me they would help with the UCAS referees business but I had to find a different center to resit my exams. Ended up costing me £580.(£60 per paper x9 exams + £20 for cash-in for both maths/physics subjects) I paid it mid November before late fees.

    I'm not fussed about the cost as it means nothing in the long run of going to a university I enjoy/studying what I'm interested in +other variables. I should expect to receive my statement of entry for May/June exams 1st week of April latest.

    That's basically my scenario atm with the @private candidate stuff
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    (Original post by XxKingSniprxX)
    I'm on a gap year & resitting A level Maths/Physics exams.

    My college told me they would help with the UCAS referees business but I had to find a different center to resit my exams. Ended up costing me £580.(£60 per paper x9 exams + £20 for cash-in for both maths/physics subjects) I paid it mid November before late fees.

    I'm not fussed about the cost as it means nothing in the long run of going to a university I enjoy/studying what I'm interested in +other variables. I should expect to receive my statement of entry for May/June exams 1st week of April latest.
    £60 isn't too bad, mine was £95 lol

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    (Original post by Princepieman)
    £60 isn't too bad, mine was £95 lol

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    Yeah, they said if you pay before Xmas break the cost of each paper is £60/paper
    however after that it could range £65-95/paper which when your taking several papers is just too much cost imo.

    I know the struggle as I tried juggling a part-time job Sep-Dec to cover the costs of exams @minimum wage + self teaching exams again.

    Studying>Working anyday!
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    (Original post by XxKingSniprxX)
    Yeah, they said if you pay before Xmas break the cost of each paper is £60/paper
    however after that it could range £65-95/paper which when your taking several papers is just too much cost imo.

    I know the struggle as I tried juggling a part-time job Sep-Dec to cover the costs of exams + self teaching exams again.
    The late fee for my centre is £140/exam lol

    And maate, you're basically a carbon copy of me, I had to save up the full amount (which included sacrificing my bonus to pay exam fees off) in about 4-ish months as well.

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