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Best access course if I want to study computer science? Watch

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    I will be signing up for an access course to start this september but I am looking at entry requirements for universities and alot of them ask say somewhere along the lines of
    "A level 3 unit in Mathematical Studies is essential. At least 30 level 3 credits in a
    science subject at Distinction"

    I was going to take access to IT for obvious reasons but I am having second thoughts, should I be doing maths or science instead?
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    Maths/IT would be the main ones.

    What does the IT one contain?

    luck2luke
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    (Original post by KyleH123)
    Maths/IT would be the main ones.

    What does the IT one contain?

    luck2luke
    The one im looking at just says

    Variety of computing diciplines including:
    *Network Security
    *Programming Principles
    *IT Systems
    *Internet

    Units offered include:
    *Ideas & Concepts
    *Computers in art & design
    *Communication through art & design
    *Product design
    *Large scale design
    *Typefaces & Letter forms
    *2D animation production
    *3D computer modelling

    The level 3 access toHE diploma (computer pathway) is validated by one awards.
    It also says this:
    "Teeside also accepts access to HE students onto the computing foundation year course which provides additional development in programming and mathematics to enable access to HE students to progress to BSc (hons) computer science if so they wish."

    I was hoping to get onto a degree level course the year after my access course does this mean I can't?
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    (Original post by luck2luke)
    The one im looking at just says

    Variety of computing diciplines including:
    *Network Security
    *Programming Principles
    *IT Systems
    *Internet

    Units offered include:
    *Ideas & Concepts
    *Computers in art & design
    *Communication through art & design
    *Product design
    *Large scale design
    *Typefaces & Letter forms
    *2D animation production
    *3D computer modelling

    The level 3 access toHE diploma (computer pathway) is validated by one awards.
    It also says this:
    "Teeside also accepts access to HE students onto the computing foundation year course which provides additional development in programming and mathematics to enable access to HE students to progress to BSc (hons) computer science if so they wish."

    I was hoping to get onto a degree level course the year after my access course does this mean I can't?
    I think your options would be pretty limited. There may be some universities that would accept this for direct entry onto a BSc Comp Sci course, but for most, the lack of any maths on the course would be a problem. You should check the entry requirements carefully for any degree you like the look of, and email the admissions tutor for clarification if you are unsure about what they would need.
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    (Original post by Schadenfreude65)
    I think your options would be pretty limited. There may be some universities that would accept this for direct entry onto a BSc Comp Sci course, but for most, the lack of any maths on the course would be a problem. You should check the entry requirements carefully for any degree you like the look of, and email the admissions tutor for clarification if you are unsure about what they would need.
    I have found another access course nearby, it seems to be the same course but here is the full module list:


    Learners will study a range of modules that will make up 60 credits. Contents include:

    IT Systems
    Network Security
    Website Design
    Relational Databases
    Programming Principles
    Spreadsheets
    Maths
    English Language
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    (Original post by luck2luke)
    I have found another access course nearby, it seems to be the same course but here is the full module list:


    Learners will study a range of modules that will make up 60 credits. Contents include:

    IT Systems
    Network Security
    Website Design
    Relational Databases
    Programming Principles
    Spreadsheets
    Maths
    English Language
    That looks more like what you'll need. The other one seemed to be aimed towards Graphic Design type courses as opposed to Computer Science. I'm doing Computer Science now off the back of an Access Course with similar content.

    Have you done English and Maths at GCSE as well?
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    (Original post by JamesN88)
    That looks more like what you'll need. The other one seemed to be aimed towards Graphic Design type courses as opposed to Computer Science. I'm doing Computer Science now off the back of an Access Course with similar content.

    Have you done English and Maths at GCSE as well?
    I did but only at grade C for both, i left school in 2010 though. I feel like the C in maths might be a problem when trying to get into decent unis.
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    (Original post by luck2luke)
    I did but only at grade C for both, i left school in 2010 though. I feel like the C in maths might be a problem when trying to get into decent unis.
    You could resit it while you do access, it's only £30 in most colleges if you're doing access as well.
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    (Original post by luck2luke)
    I did but only at grade C for both, i left school in 2010 though. I feel like the C in maths might be a problem when trying to get into decent unis.
    You might need to redo it, depends on where you want to go. I'm at Leicester who ask for a B and had offers from Newcastle and Lancaster who wanted a B as well.
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    Hey! I'm currently on an Access course myself hoping to go to university september this year (currently doing the dreaded UCAS wait)
    I'm on an Access to humanities and social science so I can go onto study politics but there is a girl on my course who wants to go onto study computer science. She originally was on the Access Business course what includes computer science in the course, but the course got cut so she was put on the Humanities instead. She contacted the universities before applying, explained and then short listed all the universities that would still allow her to study there with the access course she was on. GOOD LUCK, hope this helped.
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    I would like to get into somewhere half decent so I will look at doing my maths again, thanks.
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    You want something maths heavy, there should be at least 5 maths modules, preferably more on the course you do.

    I'm doing an access in computing and ICT which has 5 maths modules as well as programming modules and this has been fine for the universities I've applied to, Liverpool, Nottingham, Leeds and Salford (I've also applied to Sheffield though they ask for 18 credits in maths, as a mature student they do say they consider every application on its own merit). But I would have preferred to apply to Manchester who requires a maths A level. These are my modules:

    Developmental (Ungraded)
    Personal Development: Study Skills
    Communication: Presentation Skills
    Communication: Academic Essay Writing
    Study Skills: Critical Analysis
    Study Skills: Developing Research Skills
    Commercial Aspects of Computing
    Communities and sharing on the world wide web
    Developing spreadsheet applications
    Website design and development
    Computing Computer memory architecture
    Computer systems architecture
    Database principles and design
    Event driven programming
    ICT systems lifecycle
    Principles of computer programming
    Structured programming
    Maths for Computing
    Algorithms, pseudocode and trace tables
    Computer logic
    Integration
    Matrices
    Number systems and data representation


    A GCSE maths at C grade is fine as long as your access modules are graded well.

    You want to avoid anything that is going to require a foundation year. The access loan is written off when you graduate from university, but a foundation year isn't. That's either 1 extra year of loans to pay or 1 less year of loans you can apply for say if you want a year in industry.
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    The general rule is that the "best Access course" will be the one that your preferred uni wants for your preferred course. It always pays to double-check your personal circumstances with the Admissions Office in advance of committing to an Access course or any extra study. Mature student entry is decided on a case-by-case basis and entry may be easier than you think (no guarantees though).

    Do beware that the "right" Access course for one uni, won't necessarily be the "right" one for a similar course at a different uni. Check up front with each, so you know exactly what's required.

    Good point above about applying when you're 25. That's the age at which you're automatically considered financially independent by Student Finance and unless you have a trust fund or investments or similar source of income, you're likely to get the maximum Maintenance Loan. Living with your father under the age of twenty five, you will be assessed based on his income. That might reduce your Maintenance Loan.

    Regarding the funding issue for Access vs a Foundation Year, it is worth pointing out that an Access course will only get funding for your tuition fees (which does get wiped out when you graduate). However you will not get any kind of maintenance support for household bills, food, travelling etc. A Foundation Year would attract full Student Finance of both a Tuition Fee Loan and Maintenance Loan. Whilst I agree that one year less student debt would always be preferable, it could be an issue if your Access year means that you are financially dependent on your Dad.
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    An access course is only like 15 hours of class time a week, with around 20 hours independent study expected. A part time 15-22.5 hour job is perfectly practical on an access so the lack of maintenance loan isn't a disaster.
 
 
 
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