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    (Original post by rayofsunshine98)
    Just out of curiosity, are GCSE and AS grade boundaries done in the same way as the A-level ones - ie the top, say, 10% get an A* ??
    That's a vastly oversimplified way of thinking about it, but yes GCSE/AS/A-level boundaries are all set in the same way. This article (page 2 onwards) gives a full explanation about how it works and I'd recommend that everyone who's curious about these things read it. It applies to all UK exam boards.

    But in short, if your AS exams had grade boundaries of 64% and 58% for an A, you can expect the A-level papers to follow the same sort of trend. You certainly won't be needing 90% raw marks to get an A* unless there's a radical shift in difficulty!
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    (Original post by Forecast)
    That's a vastly oversimplified way of thinking about it, but yes GCSE/AS/A-level boundaries are all set in the same way. This article (page 2 onwards) gives a full explanation about how it works and I'd recommend that everyone who's curious about these things read it. It applies to all UK exam boards.

    But in short, if your AS exams had grade boundaries of 64% and 58% for an A, you can expect the A-level papers to follow the same sort of trend. You certainly won't be needing 90% raw marks to get an A* unless there's a radical shift in difficulty!

    Thanks for that link, it's certainly made things a lot clearer. So therefore theoretically, if we all got the top GCSE and AS grades, we should be the ones to get the top A-level grades as well??

    I keep saying to my teachers about how low the AS boundaries were last summer, but they dont want to budge on their 90% insistence in case the grade boundaries are drastically higher. It's good to know that I should in theory be right on this one.
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    (Original post by rayofsunshine98)
    Thanks for that link, it's certainly made things a lot clearer. So therefore theoretically, if we all got the top GCSE and AS grades, we should be the ones to get the top A-level grades as well??
    Yep. That's how the system *should* work...

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    (Original post by Doonesbury)
    Yep. That's how the system *should* work...

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    Good to hear 😂😂 that's me desperately trying to be positive enough about this to firm Cambridge and not take the easy (unconditional if firmed) option elsewhere


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    (Original post by rayofsunshine98)
    Good to hear 😂😂 that's me desperately trying to be positive enough about this to firm Cambridge and not take the easy (unconditional if firmed) option elsewhere
    Only firm the other offer if you would genuinely have also firmed it even without it being Unconditional. It's a complete marketing scam that benefits the university not the student.
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    (Original post by Doonesbury)
    Only firm the other offer if you would genuinely have also firmed it even without it being Unconditional. It's a complete marketing scam that benefits the university not the student.
    Exactly. It's like buying stuff in the sales - it's only a bargain if you would have considered buying it at full price, rather than just buying it because it's got 70% off, when in fact it's horrible.
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    On a similar note- say a uni has offered me this and i put it as an insurance- then miss said offer.

    Hypothetically they don't have to accept me though is it likely that they would anyway if you're close say AAA rather than A*AA? as they're only imploying this tactic to try and get more numbers?

    (Original post by Doonesbury)
    Only firm the other offer if you would genuinely have also firmed it even without it being Unconditional. It's a complete marketing scam that benefits the university not the student.
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    (Original post by Xphoenix)
    On a similar note- say a uni has offered me this and i put it as an insurance- then miss said offer.

    Hypothetically they don't have to accept me though is it likely that they would anyway if you're close say AAA rather than A*AA? as they're only imploying this tactic to try and get more numbers?
    Most universities accept a one or even two grade miss for most courses. Obviously this depends on the popularity of the course and how well everyone else has done.

    Even Cambridge will sometimes accept a very small miss (1 or 2 UMS).

    Less than 10% of all applicants to all universities end up at their Insurance.

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    (Original post by Doonesbury)
    Most universities accept a one or even two grade miss for most courses. Obviously this depends on the popularity of the course and how well everyone else has done.

    Even Cambridge will sometimes accept a very small miss (1 or 2 UMS).

    Less than 10% of all applicants to all universities end up at their Insurance.

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    How can they know how close you were though if you are doing new Linear A levels?


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    (Original post by Doonesbury)
    Only firm the other offer if you would genuinely have also firmed it even without it being Unconditional. It's a complete marketing scam that benefits the university not the student.
    There's no way i would firm the other uni over Cambridge if it wasn't unconditional - it's just my little security blanket. 😂😂 so then the right thing to do here IS to firm Cambridge, right? I ideally want to do it tomorrow morning because I don't want to get moaned at in chem tomorrow afternoon 😂😂 but I'm only 99.99% certain.


    I guess everyone has some doubt though, right??


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    (Original post by rayofsunshine98)
    There's no way i would firm the other uni over Cambridge if it wasn't unconditional - it's just my little security blanket. 😂😂 so then the right thing to do here IS to firm Cambridge, right? I ideally want to do it tomorrow morning because I don't want to get moaned at in chem tomorrow afternoon 😂😂 but I'm only 99.99% certain.


    I guess everyone has some doubt though, right??


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    Yeah I have some doubt... It's been so long since the Cambridge open day for my subject (it was last March) that I'm sort of forgetting what it was that made me choose Cambridge specifically, whereas Sheffield (my insurance) is really clear in my mind as the open day was last Wednesday and it sounded amazing. I do remember being really excited about the Cambridge course though so it should be fine! 😅
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    (Original post by Steliata)
    Yeah I have some doubt... It's been so long since the Cambridge open day for my subject (it was last March) that I'm sort of forgetting what it was that made me choose Cambridge specifically, whereas Sheffield (my insurance) is really clear in my mind as the open day was last Wednesday and it sounded amazing. I do remember being really excited about the Cambridge course though so it should be fine! 😅
    What course and college is your offer from? I know what you mean about it being ages ago - I did college open days in the spring and then the main open day in June but then applied to the college I stayed in on summer school last year because I loved it - and my mum hasn't ever been there 😂😂 I'm really excited about my course at Cambridge, in fact I prefer it to the unconditional by a long way, it's just the entry grades for Cambridge that worry me


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    (Original post by rayofsunshine98)
    What course and college is your offer from? I know what you mean about it being ages ago - I did college open days in the spring and then the main open day in June but then applied to the college I stayed in on summer school last year because I loved it - and my mum hasn't ever been there 😂😂 I'm really excited about my course at Cambridge, in fact I prefer it to the unconditional by a long way, it's just the entry grades for Cambridge that worry me


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    My offer is Asian and Middle Eastern Studies (Japanese) at Selwyn. I didn't really get chance to look around the college as I decided on it last minute in the week before the UCAS deadline! And I'm away for the main open days in July so next time I go (unless I go another time) will be in October I really want to go and visit Cambridge in the Easter break but train tickets will be so expensive now lol *cries*

    Tbh the module descriptions for my course are pretty vague (also you don't get to choose anything in first year) so it's hard to see what I'll get to do, but I guess it's Cambridge so it should be very wide ranging. The thing about Sheffield I do like is the open modules although that being said I doubt I'd use them much!

    I'm sure you'll be fine and meet the offer, the Cambridge admissions tutors gave you the offer for a reason Which course and college are you, and what made you like the Cambridge course?
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    (Original post by Steliata)
    My offer is Asian and Middle Eastern Studies (Japanese) at Selwyn. I didn't really get chance to look around the college as I decided on it last minute in the week before the UCAS deadline! And I'm away for the main open days in July so next time I go (unless I go another time) will be in October I really want to go and visit Cambridge in the Easter break but train tickets will be so expensive now lol *cries*

    Tbh the module descriptions for my course are pretty vague (also you don't get to choose anything in first year) so it's hard to see what I'll get to do, but I guess it's Cambridge so it should be very wide ranging. The thing about Sheffield I do like is the open modules although that being said I doubt I'd use them much!

    Which course and college are you, and what made you like the Cambridge course?
    Natural sciences at Queens'. I must say I made my final college choice only three weeks before the deadline, having looked at 5 and loved 3 of them. Could you not contact Selwyn and ask if you could go and have a look at some other point? I don't know how long it would take you to get there, but it might be an option. The module descriptions for my course are relatively vague as well, but it looks very interesting! The uni which has offered me an unconditional if I firm has a very very open course structure but I almost think it's too open. Tbh if it wasn't unconditional, I'd have firmed Cambridge by now... Which I guess tells me what I need to do, doesn't it? Have you firmed yet?


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    (Original post by rayofsunshine98)
    Natural sciences at Queens'. I must say I made my final college choice only three weeks before the deadline, having looked at 5 and loved 3 of them. Could you not contact Selwyn and ask if you could go and have a look at some other point? I don't know how long it would take you to get there, but it might be an option. The module descriptions for my course are relatively vague as well, but it looks very interesting! The uni which has offered me an unconditional if I firm has a very very open course structure but I almost think it's too open. Tbh if it wasn't unconditional, I'd have firmed Cambridge by now... Which I guess tells me what I need to do, doesn't it? Have you firmed yet?


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    Yeah I firmed last week after the Sheffield open day, I was sure about firming Cambridge but not about my insurance choice.

    I could probably do that but then there's convincing the parents to either give me a lift, insure me on the car so I can drive or shelling out for train tickets haha

    I live in Chester so it's the Chester to London tickets that would be expensive really :/
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    (Original post by Steliata)
    Yeah I firmed last week after the Sheffield open day, I was sure about firming Cambridge but not about my insurance choice.

    I could probably do that but then there's convincing the parents to either give me a lift, insure me on the car so I can drive or shelling out for train tickets haha

    I live in Chester so it's the Chester to London tickets that would be expensive really :/
    Fair enough, I know what my insurance will be if I firm, it's just deciding where to firm that's winding me up. Although I might just bite the bullet and firm Cambridge because I wouldn't be considering anywhere else for my firm if I didn't have an unconditional on the table.

    Yeah that would be expensive, I'm in Sussex so it's only like £40 on the train which isn't that much.




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    (Original post by Steliata)
    My offer is Asian and Middle Eastern Studies (Japanese) at Selwyn. I didn't really get chance to look around the college as I decided on it last minute in the week before the UCAS deadline!
    Genius decision though, it's the best College by far! The cherry trees are in blossom now outside the front of College and it looks glorious. The gardens are fantastic, and it's a nice homely College, just far enough out of town to be off the tourist trail, but it takes no time to pop into town. You probably need to allow about 3 minutes to get to AMES after you've rolled out of bed - you could hardly be closer. Don't worry that you don't know about Selwyn, it's a fantastic place, it'll just seem all the more exciting to discover it yourself come the autumn
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    (Original post by threeportdrift)
    Genius decision though, it's the best College by far! The cherry trees are in blossom now outside the front of College and it looks glorious. The gardens are fantastic, and it's a nice homely College, just far enough out of town to be off the tourist trail, but it takes no time to pop into town. You probably need to allow about 3 minutes to get to AMES after you've rolled out of bed - you could hardly be closer. Don't worry that you don't know about Selwyn, it's a fantastic place, it'll just seem all the more exciting to discover it yourself come the autumn
    Haha thank you - it was partly the people on here that recommended Selwyn to me. Do you by any chance have any personal connection to it 😂
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    (Original post by rayofsunshine98)
    How can they know how close you were though if you are doing new Linear A levels?


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    In theory they can see how close by comparing your raw marks with the published exam board grade boundaries.

    But it remains to be seen if they will ask for raw marks in the same way they used to ask for UMS on Results Day from any near miss offer holders.



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    (Original post by Steliata)
    Haha thank you - it was partly the people on here that recommended Selwyn to me. Do you by any chance have any personal connection to it 😂
    Three very happy years doing a PhD there. In fact, I started off in a very sad place, and they fixed it (lots of people in College helped), so I have a soft spot for them. I now work nearby and divert to walk past on purpose sometimes - especially when the cherries are in bloom (ie last Friday!).
 
 
 
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