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    Okay, so I have high hopes for myself to study (most likely some form of Engineering) at Cambridge - absolutely not essential but I like to aim high in order to push myself to work hard.

    My gcse grades may not go to plan and I know for a fact I'm not going to get the grades I originally aspired to due to personal medical conditions. But hey ho, life goes on.
    So say if..
    GCSE's = 3A*'s, 3A's, 4B's and a C (this is worst case scenario)
    A-LEVELS = 4A*

    How likely is it to get into Cambridge with the above grades?
    Does Cambridge pay a lot of attention to gcse grades for competitive courses?
    What are the average gcse grades of a Cambridge student?
    Will my gcse grades put me at a disadvantage?

    I'm trying my best not to come off a bit too big for my boots here (lol) but I can hopefully work hard enough to get those grades at A-level.

    I've heard myths of C/B grades at gcse's being a complete disadvantage but isn't that only for courses like medicine/law?
    I'm just a bit on edge because Engineering is become increasingly popular amongst us (the younger generation) now and I'm scared my gcse's will hinder me as competition is increasing.

    Thanks in advance, x
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    (Original post by nialee)
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    I think you would be very likely to get in if you apply post-A2 with 4 A*'s in relevant subjects. If you didn't it would be because you messed up the interview.

    Cambridge don't pay much attention to GCSE grades apart from for medicine.

    I think the average Cambridge student has 4-8 A*'s and the rest pretty much straight A's, although some people will have 20 A*'s, and some will have none.

    Your GCSE's will not hinder you if you post-A2 with 4 A*'s, but they may slightly disadvantage you if you don't do AS's and your GCSE's are therefore the only qualifications you have when applying. You are unlikely to be disadvantaged if you had extenuating medical circumstances.
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    All A* grades.
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    Cambridge care way more about A levels than GCSEs, tbh they'd probably be more impressed if you got Bs and Cs in GCSE then got As and A*s at A level cos that shows serious improvement and you've obviously worked really hard to get those grades. Obviously though if you were applying before you got your A level results then they would have to rely on GCSEs slightly more so they would be slightly more important.
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    (Original post by sweeneyrod)
    I think you would be very likely to get in if you apply post-A2 with 4 A*'s in relevant subjects. If you didn't it would be because you messed up the interview.

    Cambridge don't pay much attention to GCSE grades apart from for medicine.

    I think the average Cambridge student has 4-8 A*'s and the rest pretty much straight A's, although some people will have 20 A*'s, and some will have none.

    Your GCSE's will not hinder you if you post-A2 with 4 A*'s, but they may slightly disadvantage you if you don't do AS's and your GCSE's are therefore the only qualifications you have when applying. You are unlikely to be disadvantaged if you had extenuating medical circumstances.
    With the new A-LEVEL reforms I heard AS results won't be taken into account for university offers? Is this true? So I thought Cambridge offers would be solely based on A2 results or predictions from A2 mocks? I don't know..
    I'm just scared that no matter how well I do at A-levels, my gcse grades will put me at a disadvantage.. especially since I will be applying for a competitive course
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    (Original post by Tinka99)
    All A* grades.
    Really? Sorry, I can't tell if you're being serious or not
    Are students with all A* grades at gcse more secured for that Cambridge offer along with great A-level results compared to me?
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    (Original post by nialee)
    With the new A-LEVEL reforms I heard AS results won't be taken into account for university offers? Is this true? So I thought Cambridge offers would be solely based on A2 results or predictions from A2 mocks? I don't know..
    I'm just scared that no matter how well I do at A-levels, my gcse grades will put me at a disadvantage.. especially since I will be applying for a competitive course
    If you do AS's they will be taken into account. The issue is that not everyone will do AS's, as they no longer count towards full A-levels.
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    (Original post by nialee)
    Really? Sorry, I can't tell if you're being serious or not
    Are students with all A* grades at gcse more secured for that Cambridge offer along with great A-level results compared to me?
    No, as sweeneyrod said GCSEs are not that important. And your GCSE profile is fine anyway.

    And if you are on target to meet the typical offer then apply. No need to wait until a gap year.

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    AS does matter. From what I've heard most schools, including mine base their predicted grades on AS exam results and won't give you predicted grades that go beyond your AS results.
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    C's at GCSE will definitely be a warning light to these top tier universities - are you not well rounded? Did you prioritise other subjects? You've got to remember that they will always have enough people with A*'s coming out their ears to accept. A levels obviously are a big factor to consider also, and this improvement from "okay gcse's" to "excellent a levels" would show a reformed individual and definitely boost your chances.

    The interview is in some ways the most important element for these top uni's. They have enough people getting the grades, but they want people who can think outside the box, someone who brings something to the table that sets them above the rest; thus why you hear all the time about their rigorous and mind f*cking interview questions. I know someone who got top grades in GCSE's and A levels yet still didn't get into Oxbridge.

    All in all, you're not completely f*cked ye - just prepare for a bumpy ride 'cos it's gonna be a lot of work.
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    (Original post by DontSweatIt)
    C's at GCSE will definitely be a warning light to these top tier universities - are you not well rounded? Did you prioritise other subjects?
    We don't care. We're perfectly happy with 'square' not 'rounded' people.

    (Original post by DontSweatIt)
    You've got to remember that they will always have enough people with A*'s coming out their ears to accept. A levels obviously are a big factor to consider also, and this improvement from "okay gcse's" to "excellent a levels" would show a reformed individual and dly boost your chances.
    This is true, but phrased in a slightly misleading way. There is nothing specific we're looking for with GCSEs - there are no quotas or cut-offs at ANY point in the admissions round. We look at all applications holistically on a case-by-case basis, using all available information to paint a picture about your achievements, abilitiies and potential. The progress from GCSE to A level is one such element.

    (Original post by DontSweatIt)
    The interview is in some ways the most important element for these top uni's. They have enough people getting the grades, but they want people who can think outside the box, someone who brings something to the table that sets them above the rest; thus why you hear all the time about their rigorous and mind f*cking interview questions. I know someone who got top grades in GCSE's and A levels yet still didn't get into Oxbridge.
    NO! The interview is simply one part of our holistic assessment (see above). It is no more, and no less important than anything else. No one piece of information (e.g. interview score) is ever considered in isolation and no particular weighting is applied to anything. Lots of people don't get an offer despite top grades and others get offers with what seem like wekaer grades. This does not necessarily mean that one aced their interview and the other did really badly - we look at all available information, including information on school background and other contextual factors.

    (Original post by DontSweatIt)
    All in all, you're not completely f*cked ye - just prepare for a bumpy ride 'cos it's gonna be a lot of work.
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    (Original post by Peterhouse Admissions)
    We don't care. We're perfectly happy with 'square' not 'rounded' people.



    This is true, but phrased in a slightly misleading way. There is nothing specific we're looking for with GCSEs - there are no quotas or cut-offs at ANY point in the admissions round. We look at all applications holistically on a case-by-case basis, using all available information to paint a picture about your achievements, abilitiies and potential. The progress from GCSE to A level is one such element.



    NO! The interview is simply one part of our holistic assessment (see above). It is no more, and no less important than anything else. No one piece of information (e.g. interview score) is ever considered in isolation and no particular weighting is applied to anything. Lots of people don't get an offer despite top grades and others get offers with what seem like wekaer grades. This does not necessarily mean that one aced their interview and the other did really badly - we look at all available information, including information on school background and other contextual factors.
    Thanks for clearing this up! I was getting pretty nervous about my presumably bad GCSE grades, while I've read that GCSE's don't matter too much, everyone here seems to think they do.
    I will probably only get 6 GCSEs all around grade C and a few Bs, With an A* in maths, I hope to eventually do maths or even computer science at oxbridge.
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    (Original post by Peterhouse Admissions)
    We don't care. We're perfectly happy with 'square' not 'rounded' people.



    This is true, but phrased in a slightly misleading way. There is nothing specific we're looking for with GCSEs - there are no quotas or cut-offs at ANY point in the admissions round. We look at all applications holistically on a case-by-case basis, using all available information to paint a picture about your achievements, abilitiies and potential. The progress from GCSE to A level is one such element.



    NO! The interview is simply one part of our holistic assessment (see above). It is no more, and no less important than anything else. No one piece of information (e.g. interview score) is ever considered in isolation and no particular weighting is applied to anything. Lots of people don't get an offer despite top grades and others get offers with what seem like wekaer grades. This does not necessarily mean that one aced their interview and the other did really badly - we look at all available information, including information on school background and other contextual factors.
    Brutally savage but thanks for clarifying. Do you think someone could be at a disadvantage because they retook the year?
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    So with pretty average GCSE scores you'll think you will get A*A*A*A* :eating:
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    (Original post by Dnkz7)
    Brutally savage but thanks for clarifying. Do you think someone could be at a disadvantage because they retook the year?
    Yes they would be at a disadvantage unless they had extenuating circumstances.

    Cambridge generally doesn't mind about resitting 1 or 2 modules but an entire year would be a problem.
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    (Original post by Peterhouse Admissions)
    We don't care. We're perfectly happy with 'square' not 'rounded' people.



    This is true, but phrased in a slightly misleading way. There is nothing specific we're looking for with GCSEs - there are no quotas or cut-offs at ANY point in the admissions round. We look at all applications holistically on a case-by-case basis, using all available information to paint a picture about your achievements, abilitiies and potential. The progress from GCSE to A level is one such element.



    NO! The interview is simply one part of our holistic assessment (see above). It is no more, and no less important than anything else. No one piece of information (e.g. interview score) is ever considered in isolation and no particular weighting is applied to anything. Lots of people don't get an offer despite top grades and others get offers with what seem like wekaer grades. This does not necessarily mean that one aced their interview and the other did really badly - we look at all available information, including information on school background and other contextual factors.
    Feel completely schooled. - was merely giving my outlook on the matter (but thanks for clearing it up).

    Out of interest, what are you looking for in a student, in the interview?
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    (Original post by 34908seikj)
    Thanks for clearing this up! I was getting pretty nervous about my presumably bad GCSE grades, while I've read that GCSE's don't matter too much, everyone here seems to think they do.
    I will probably only get 6 GCSEs all around grade C and a few Bs, With an A* in maths, I hope to eventually do maths or even computer science at oxbridge.
    Even though they don't necessarily matter that much, if your only A* is in maths I would be sceptical about your chances of getting the necessary A*A*A at A-level.
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    (Original post by sweeneyrod)
    Even though they don't necessarily matter that much, if your only A* is in maths I would be sceptical about your chances of getting the necessary A*A*A at A-level.
    I'm doing Maths, further maths and government and politics as well as computer science. If I don't like a subject I just switch off completely; it's quite childish, I know. Luckily the A-levels I'm taking are subjects that I've been very interested in and wanted to do for the better part of a year.
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    (Original post by 34908seikj)
    I'm doing Maths, further maths and government and politics as well as computer science. If I don't like a subject I just switch off completely; it's quite childish, I know. Luckily the A-levels I'm taking are subjects that I've been very interested in and wanted to do for the better part of a year.
    Well, good luck!
 
 
 
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