Worth applying to universities in the US/ which ones?

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Saphiracal
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I'm currently in year 13 hoping to go to university either this year or next year. I'm already holding an offer for a UK university but am quite worried about the course, particuarly as it wasn't one I originally applied for.

I'm looking at the US system because it seems to be more broad, which is something that really appeals. My issue is grades and SAT/ACT - I'd like to go to a pretty reputable uni but am currently on anything from A*BB to ABB grades and around 1440 (640 reading 800 maths) on the SAT - which I'm trying to improve to 1500+.

I have a lot of extra curricular, but I'm not sure if this makes up for the lower a level grades?

I'd love advice on what to do in my situation, and what types of unis I couldn't get into with my grades/ if I'd be able to get any scholarships (financial problems with being abroad)

Extra Curricular:

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In terms of extra curricular I've got grade 8 (merit) in two instruments, and a diploma in one. I've also won a national stem completion as part of a pair, volunteered in a charity shop for a year and I used to be in a junior county squad for a sport.

Slightly less relevant on the english-y side I've got a fairly popular book written online, and I've recently been contacted by someone asking if I'd be interested in being paid for publishing it digitally on their website. I've also designed a book cover for a self-published book and am hoping to start selling my designs online this summer.

I've also tutored a couple of people in flute/ piano
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Snufkin
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(Original post by Saphiracal)
I'm currently in year 13 hoping to go to university either this year or next year. I'm already holding an offer for a UK university but am quite worried about the course, particuarly as it wasn't one I originally applied for.

I'm looking at the US system because it seems to be more broad, which is something that really appeals. My issue is grades and SAT/ACT - I'd like to go to a pretty reputable uni but am currently on anything from A*AB to ABB grades and around 1440 (640 reading 800 maths) on the SAT.

I have a lot of extra curricular, but I'm not sure if this makes up for the lower a level grades?

I'd love advice on what to do in my situation, and what types of unis I couldn't get into with my grades/ if I'd be able to get any scholarships (financial problems with being abroad)
Can you afford to study in the US? Contrary to popular belief, not many US universities offer significant financial aid packages to international students. The top ones do but they are incredibly difficult to get into, and I'm not sure that your A level and SAT grades are good enough to make a competitive application.

That said, extracurricular activities can make up for slightly lower grades if they are good enough - are they good enough, what have you done? There is a bit of a myth that American unis like applicants who take part in lots of different clubs, they don't, they like applicants who have done extraordinary things (e.g. playing sport for a national team, having a book published, starting a business, start a charity), and most importantly, applicants that have done things which demonstrate leadership skills.

Are you sure there isn't a degree course in the UK (or perhaps Europe, where it's much easier to apply than America) which does not suit your interests? There are quite a number of American-style Liberal Arts, broad-based degrees in the UK and the Netherlands.
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Saphiracal
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(Original post by Snufkin)
Can you afford to study in the US? Contrary to popular belief, not many US universities offer significant financial aid packages to international students. The top ones do but they are incredibly difficult to get into, and I'm not sure that your A level and SAT grades are good enough to make a competitive application.

That said, extracurricular activities can make up for slightly lower grades if they are good enough - are they good enough, what have you done? There is a bit of a myth that American unis like applicants who take part in lots of different clubs, they don't, they like applicants who have done extraordinary things (e.g. playing sport for a national team, having a book published, starting a business, start a charity), and most importantly, applicants that have done things which demonstrate leadership skills.

Are you sure there isn't a degree course in the UK (or perhaps Europe, where it's much easier to apply than America) which does not suit your interests? There are quite a number of American-style Liberal Arts, broad-based degrees in the UK and the Netherlands.
Hi, thanks for your response! Regarding affordability that's one of the major issues for me (also the reason I didn't apply this past cycle) so I recognise that's a pretty major thing. I've looked at a lot of the Unis in the UK and one of my current form/insurance choices is a Scottish university, which was the broadest course I could find - the main issue I have is that my a Levels are all maths/science so I'd have trouble getting into any UK uni and taking arts/ humanities modules. I'll have a look at the Neverlands though - I hadn't considered that

Extra Curricular:
Spoiler:
Show
In terms of extra curricular I've got grade 8 (merit) in two instruments, and a diploma in one. I've also won a national stem completion as part of a pair, volunteered in a charity shop for a year and I used to be in a junior county squad for a sport.

Slightly less relevant on the english-y side I've got a fairly popular book written online, and I've recently been contacted by someone asking if I'd be interested in being paid for publishing it digitally on their website. I've also designed a book cover for a self-published book and am hoping to start selling my designs online this summer.

I've also tutored a couple of people in flute/ piano


Mainly I'm just worried about not being able to be creative at uni as well as doing Science - it's pretty important to me to have a mix
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Snufkin
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(Original post by Saphiracal)
Hi, thanks for your response! Regarding affordability that's one of the major issues for me (also the reason I didn't apply this past cycle) so I recognise that's a pretty major thing. I've looked at a lot of the Unis in the UK and one of my current form/insurance choices is a Scottish university, which was the broadest course I could find - the main issue I have is that my a Levels are all maths/science so I'd have trouble getting into any UK uni and taking arts/ humanities modules. I'll have a look at the Neverlands though - I hadn't considered that

Extra Curricular:
Spoiler:
Show


In terms of extra curricular I've got grade 8 (merit) in two instruments, and a diploma in one. I've also won a national stem completion as part of a pair, volunteered in a charity shop for a year and I used to be in a junior county squad for a sport. Slightly less relevant on the english-y side I've got a fairly popular book written online, and I've recently been contacted by someone asking if I'd be interested in being paid for publishing it digitally on their website. I've also designed a book cover for a self-published book and am hoping to start selling my designs online this summer.



Mainly I'm just worried about not being able to be creative at uni as well as doing Science - it's pretty important to me to have a mix
Your ECs sound good, so it's definitely worth applying. I'm not familiar enough with specific US unis to say where you're most likely to get in, though. I've moved your thread into the Applying to America forum, so maybe someone more familiar with US unis can help you out.

What subjects would you like to study? I don't think Scotland does have the broadest degrees in the UK, Exeter's Flexible Combined Honours degree, Durham's Liberal Arts, Combined Honours and Natural Sciences degrees, Birmingham's Liberal Arts and Sciences degree, UCL's Arts and Sciences degree and others are all more broad than anything Scotland has.

If you want an American-style education, but can't afford to study in America, these are all excellent options - especially Amsterdam University College (run by the University of Amsterdam and the VU University Amsterdam), and University College Utrecht and University College Roosevelt (both part of the prestigious Utrecht University):

http://www.auc.nl/ (Amsterdam, Netherlands)
https://www.uu.nl/en/organisation/un...ollege-utrecht (Utrecht, Netherlands)
http://www.ucr.nl/Pages/default.aspx (Middelburg, Netherlands)
https://www.maastrichtuniversity.nl/...ege-maastricht (Maastricht, Netherlands)
https://www.maastrichtuniversity.nl/...-college-venlo (Venlo, Netherlands)
https://www.eur.nl/en/euc/ (Rotterdam, Netherlands)
https://www.ucf.uni-freiburg.de (Freiburg, Germany)
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Saphiracal
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(Original post by Snufkin)
Your ECs sound good, so it's definitely worth applying. I'm not familiar enough with specific US unis to say where you're most likely to get in, though. I've moved your thread into the Applying to America forum, so maybe someone more familiar with US unis can help you out.

What subjects would you like to study? I don't think Scotland does have the broadest degrees in the UK, Exeter's Flexible Combined Honours degree, Durham's Liberal Arts, Combined Honours and Natural Sciences degrees, Birmingham's Liberal Arts and Sciences degree, UCL's Arts and Sciences degree and others are all more broad than anything Scotland has.

If you want an American-style education, but can't afford to study in America, these are all excellent options - especially Amsterdam University College (run by the University of Amsterdam and the VU University Amsterdam), and University College Utrecht and University College Roosevelt (both part of the prestigious Utrecht University):

http://www.auc.nl/ (Amsterdam, Netherlands)
https://www.uu.nl/en/organisation/un...ollege-utrecht (Utrecht, Netherlands)
http://www.ucr.nl/Pages/default.aspx (Middelburg, Netherlands)
https://www.maastrichtuniversity.nl/...ege-maastricht (Maastricht, Netherlands)
https://www.maastrichtuniversity.nl/...-college-venlo (Venlo, Netherlands)
https://www.eur.nl/en/euc/ (Rotterdam, Netherlands)
https://www.ucf.uni-freiburg.de (Freiburg, Germany)
Thank you for all those uni links - I'll definitely check them out!

The subjects I'd ideally like to study (and I'm not even sure if it's possible to have this combo) are engineering and creative writing or graphic design, in the major/minor route. I looked at the UCL and Durham courses when initially applying but due to my A Levels (Maths, Physics, Chemistry) didn't qualify for the UCL requirements.

I'm currently thinking about trying out some more SATs tests and having a go at the ACTs after my A Levels are over, just to see how they go and try and improve
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Saphiracal
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Bumping this, and updated original post - particularly interested in scholarships and funding as I'll struggle otherwise (I'm hoping to get a job this year to pay a little towards it) :s
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