US Student doing a UCA application - how much does my senior year matter?

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JinxViper
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I live in California and have done all of my schooling here from elementary school through high school. Never did any International Baccalaureate stuff or A-levels so I just have grades, SAT scores, AP test scores, and whatever I get on the ACT.

Currently I will be starting senior year of high school this fall. How much do my grades and test scores matter?

I am going to apply to King's College, University of Edinburgh, University of Glasgow, and then probably 2 more in England.

Do these universities ever even see my senior year grades? Or do they only see my transcript through junior year and then accept me or not based on that, senior year meaning nothing? I've heard that my AP scores will be more important because they are standardized.

Thank you for any help!
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RogerOxon
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(Original post by pandaenthusiast)
I live in California and have done all of my schooling here from elementary school through high school. Never did any International Baccalaureate stuff or A-levels so I just have grades, SAT scores, AP test scores, and whatever I get on the ACT.

Currently I will be starting senior year of high school this fall. How much do my grades and test scores matter?
Your transcript is not part of the UCAS process. You will enter your AP, SAT and ACT scores (one of SAT/ACT is sufficient), but that's it. What matters is these, your personal statement and reference.

UK universities typically make conditional offers, i.e. your place will likely be conditional on achieving certain scores / grades in your final year (unless you already have loads of APs). Typically, these could include APs, SAT / ACT and GPA. It's the AP results that matter most - SAT/ACT and GPA (if specified) are usually just a requirement, whereas AP scores in relevant subjects are what communicate your ability in your chosen degree subject(s).

What subject(s) are you looking to read?

I live in Northern California, and my son has just been through the UCAS process. He's starting at Imperial (Maths and Computer Science) next month.
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JinxViper
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(Original post by RogerOxon)
Your transcript is not part of the UCAS process. You will enter your AP, SAT and ACT scores (one of SAT/ACT is sufficient), but that's it. What matters is these, your personal statement and reference.

UK universities typically make conditional offers, i.e. your place will likely be conditional on achieving certain scores / grades in your final year (unless you already have loads of APs). Typically, these could include APs, SAT / ACT and GPA. It's the AP results that matter most - SAT/ACT and GPA (if specified) are usually just a requirement, whereas AP scores in relevant subjects are what communicate your ability in your chosen degree subject(s).

What subject(s) are you looking to read?

I live in Northern California, and my son has just been through the UCAS process. He's starting at Imperial (Maths and Computer Science) next month.
Thank you for the response!

I am interested in either a conservation biology or psychology career path. Probably would just go for some kind of biology, zoology, or ecology degree because the only reason I would do psych instead is because there's likely more money there. I have more experience and passion with conservation biology though and I have done a lot of volunteering and internship work for that.

I have a GPA of about 3.7 unweighted, 4.6 weighted. Dunno if weighted counts for anything in the UK or if they wanna hear about that but it does communicate the rigor of my classes.

As far as AP scores I got a 5 in Environmental Science and a 5 in Psychology, and I am taking Biology this year. No chance at AP Chemistry because my school does not offer it anymore. I also got a 4 in English. SAT score was 1430/1600, 690 math 740 English. Hopefully can improve it a bit.

I also got 3's on my AP tests in United States history, Art studio, Spanish, and European history but they probably don't wanna hear about my 3's and those are likely irrelevant to Psych and Bio anyway
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RogerOxon
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(Original post by pandaenthusiast)
I have a GPA of about 3.7 unweighted, 4.6 weighted. Dunno if weighted counts for anything in the UK or if they wanna hear about that but it does communicate the rigor of my classes.

As far as AP scores I got a 5 in Environmental Science and a 5 in Psychology, and I am taking Biology this year. No chance at AP Chemistry because my school does not offer it anymore. I also got a 4 in English. SAT score was 1430/1600, 690 math 740 English. Hopefully can improve it a bit.

I also got 3's on my AP tests in United States history, Art studio, Spanish, and European history but they probably don't wanna hear about my 3's and those are likely irrelevant to Psych and Bio anyway
Your AP results a little disappointing compared to your SAT score and GPA IMO. How good (or otherwise) is your school?

Have you looked at the entry requirements for each of your target universities? I suspect that you mostly have them now. I would encourage you to have a look at applying to Oxford if you are particularly strong in the relevant subjects- worth a roll of the dice IMO, although you'd have to redo the SAT (1470 required). Good luck.
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RogerOxon
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(Original post by pandaenthusiast)
I also got 3's on my AP tests in United States history, Art studio, Spanish, and European history but they probably don't wanna hear about my 3's and those are likely irrelevant to Psych and Bio anyway
You have to declare all AP, SAT and ACT results on your UCAS application. If they're not relevant to the degree that you want to do, it won't hurt much, if at all.
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RogerOxon
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(Original post by pandaenthusiast)
I have a GPA of about 3.7 unweighted, 4.6 weighted. Dunno if weighted counts for anything in the UK or if they wanna hear about that but it does communicate the rigor of my classes.
I doubt that there will be any difficult GPA requirement - offers are based on APs and SAT / ACT. Any GPA condition is typically just to make sure that you don't freewheel too much in your final year.
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JinxViper
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(Original post by RogerOxon)
Your AP results a little disappointing compared to your SAT score and GPA IMO. How good (or otherwise) is your school?

Have you looked at the entry requirements for each of your target universities? I suspect that you mostly have them now. I would encourage you to have a look at applying to Oxford if you are particularly strong in the relevant subjects- worth a roll of the dice IMO, although you'd have to redo the SAT (1470 required). Good luck.
Ok, that's encouraging about the GPA requirements and lower AP scores. Edinburgh and Glasgow have relatively low entry requirements for international students but it wouldn't guarantee me an acceptance if I barely scraped the minimum. The minimum is 1290 and 1280 SAT respectively, and 2-3 AP scores of 4+ in relevant subjects. So I could make it I think. Not sure if I am allowed to apply for multiple majors.

As for King's, they require anywhere from an ABB to an A*AA in A-level equivalent depending on subject. My equivalent is AAB. So, I could maybe make it but they have no specific requirements listed for the majors I would apply for ?? (either environmental science or environmental studies https://www.kings.edu/academics/unde...nmentalscience https://www.kings.edu/academics/unde...nmentalstudies) it's like, they exist and have their own pages but don't list the A-level requirement. And doesn't come up when I search their undergraduate programs but is on the majors list. Weird.

And Oxford...awesome school but I'd need another 5 on an AP test so I could do an SAT-II for that (they take those as well in combination) and probably take English or something. I am resitting the SAT on Aug 26. The only problem with that is that I do want to live in a big city with a good music scene so preferably in London or Glasgow. But Oxford is Oxford so if I got in I would go anyway to be honest.
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