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TeaDegree
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hi guys, my biggest role model is honestly ibz mo... he got bbccccdd at gcse and A* A A at a-level. for a-level he took psychology, sociology and media and he was able to get into Cambridge. that's really impressive like wow. however, most posts I've read on here are like if you don't get 10-12 A* at gcse you basically wont get accepted to any top uni such as oxbridge, lse and ucl. but then cases like ibz mo really make me re-evaluate this. honestly how important are gcse grades? is ibz mo a really rare case?
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[QUOTE=TeaDegree;78796552]hi guys, my biggest role model is honestly ibz mo... he got bbccccdd at gcse and A* A A at a-level. for a-level he took psychology, sociology and media and he was able to get into Cambridge. that's really impressive like wow. however, most posts I've read on here are like if you don't get 10-12 A* at gcse you basically wont get accepted to any top uni such as oxbridge, lse and ucl. but then cases like ibz mo really make me re-evaluate this. honestly how important are gcse grades? is ibz mo a really rare case?[/QUOTE

You don't get rejected over not having a certain number of A*s at gcse that's just some bs ppl make up. However having a really good gcse profile will obviously work in your favour. Ibz Mo actually got A*A*A in the end because he got one of his subjects remarked but he is a perfect example to show that the whole process is holistic. Oxford do, in general, care more about gcse grades than cambridge but the interviews and entrance exams are much more important. It is useful to know that every year there will be people who get into Oxbridge that have no A*s at gcse at all.

Basically there are no gcse requirements except like getting a C in english language and maths probably.
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TeaDegree
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Thank you!! I have no clue how to use this app tbh. But I didn’t know that he got it remarked coz on his YouTube video he had A*AA but thank youu. How about lse? Ppl constantly say that unless you got amazing gcse you have no chance
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username3694440
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you can't group together the gcse requirements for all courses at oxbridge and lse and ucl. of course theyre all going to have different gcse requirements, and cambridge especially assesses all applications holistically, so getting offers is based on all parts of your application. however certain courses have harsher gcserequirements, e.g medicine at oxford you kind of do need a*s to have a realistic chance of interview.
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TeaDegree
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I’m considering law
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TheTree0fDeath
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(Original post by TeaDegree)
hi guys, my biggest role model is honestly ibz mo... he got bbccccdd at gcse and A* A A at a-level. for a-level he took psychology, sociology and media and he was able to get into Cambridge. that's really impressive like wow. however, most posts I've read on here are like if you don't get 10-12 A* at gcse you basically wont get accepted to any top uni such as oxbridge, lse and ucl. but then cases like ibz mo really make me re-evaluate this. honestly how important are gcse grades? is ibz mo a really rare case?
I feel like Ibz Mo probably is a rare case but a few things worked in his favour.

Ibz mo didn’t apply to Cambridge originally - only after he finished his A-Levels and was on his gap year. The reason this was helpful was because with his A-Levels he already had evidence to prove to them he was really, really clever.

The issue anyone who doesn’t apply after they’ve got their A*AA is going to have is convincing Cambridge that they can get those grades. If you’ve got glowing GCSEs this isn’t an issue but if you did mediocre in them you’re going to find it a challenge.

If you ace the interview and entrance exams you might have a shout but for someone applying in October Year 13 with Bs at Cs and GCSE may not even get an interview.

It also depends on Oxford or Cambridge because both have different systems. Generally people have told me that Oxford care loads about GCSEs whereas Cambridge are more open to candidates who show great potential but don’t necessarily have a consistent history of academic success.

My personal experience was I got 7 A*s, 6As in my GCSEs and in Year 12 took A-Level Maths early and got an A*. Aced entrance exam but was then rejected after interview at Oxford, which was fair enough tbh because the pressure kind of got to me in the room and I fluffed it. I know I didn’t get in but I feel like in terms of grades I was a reasonably typical candidate so I feel like it is unusual for someone who had bad GCSEs to make it all the way.
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TeaDegree
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I’m considering Cambridge over oxford but thank you for your insight X regarding a gap year I’ve heard that unis don’t really like it and if you do take one then you have to do something really extraordinary in it.
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Doones
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(Original post by TeaDegree)
hi guys, my biggest role model is honestly ibz mo...
Are you a mature student like he was?

I assume not, so what are your GCSEs and predicted A-levels?

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Doones
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(Original post by TeaDegree)
I’m considering Cambridge over oxford but thank you for your insight X regarding a gap year I’ve heard that unis don’t really like it and if you do take one then you have to do something really extraordinary in it.
Gap years are absolutely fine.

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TeaDegree
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I don’t know if I’m replying correctly like how do you apply to an individual. But no I’m not a mature student, I’m 17 and I just finished my AS levels. I’m getting them on the 16th of August. My school has given me an estimate of A*A*A from like mocks but the real predicted grade depends on our AS results. I’m hoping for 4 As at AS so I can get predicted 3 A*s considering we drop a subject here. Regarding my GCSEs grades, I took them in another school which was tbh really crappy and it’s known for being crappy. Like for some reason most teachers in the English department got pregnant during our GCSEs so we just had inexperienced cover teachers. However, I defo should blame myself for my gcse grades. They’re not like typical Cambridge level. Honestly mainly Bs and As. We also did like the new reformed GCSEs so we had like 1-9 grading system for certain subjects. Huge shocker considering we only started learning for the 1-9 system from yr 11 which seemed a bit too late.
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TeaDegree
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(Original post by Doonesbury)
Gap years are absolutely fine.

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What would you suggest one does during a gap year to better their chances of Cambridge ?
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FloralHybrid
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He did psychology, sociology and English literature - Not media 😬

Ibz Mo applied to Cambridge post A-Level grades. Had he applied before he achieved those grades, his GCSE’s would have held more weighting in his application.

Getting 10A*+ GCSE grades isn’t a requirement for Cambridge. But, given that it’s one of the best universities in England, it attracts a high calibre of students, and as a result most of the success applicants will have outstanding academic backgrounds.

So, good/excellent GCSE’s help, yes. But they won’t solely make or break an application.
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FloralHybrid
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(Original post by TeaDegree)
What would you suggest one does during a gap year to better their chances of Cambridge ?
It depends on the circumstance, but usually - Yes. Particularly if your GCSEs are considered weaker, you’ll then have met the A-Level requirements by the time you apply.
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Doones
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(Original post by TeaDegree)
What would you suggest one does during a gap year to better their chances of Cambridge ?
I don't suggest taking one unless you want to. Apply to Cambridge (if you want to) in October as normal and see how your application goes. Your A-levels predictions are good, and Cambridge takes your "crappy" schooling into account *and* having an upward academic trajectory is a good thing too.

What are your A-level subjects?


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Parliament
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1. He's a mature student, so it's a different ballgame and... dare I say it? Slightly easier to get in...
2. Another thing someone's probably gonna yell at me about, but none of his A-Levels are facilitating subjects/considered academically challenging.
3. Most importantly, results are contextualised. You need to over-perform relative to your background, whether you went to Eton or a special measures comp up north. I don't know his background, but it's worth bearing in mind that your social and educational context is crucial. That said, having an upward academic trajectory like he did isn't going to do you any harm when applying to Cambridge (Oxford, because their admissions process is charmingly antiquated, will just reject you on the basis of poor GCSEs). Cambridge acknowledge that some people don't start to develop/peak academically until their A-Levels, so are more willing to overlook bad GCSEs if your A-Levels are solid (because it's a sign that you've got more to give at uni).
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TeaDegree
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(Original post by Doonesbury)
I don't suggest taking one unless you want to. Apply to Cambridge (if you want to) in October as normal and see how your application goes. Your A-levels predictions are good, and Cambridge takes your "crappy" schooling into account *and* having an upward academic trajectory is a good thing too.

What are your A-level subjects?


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My A-level subjects are government and politics, psychology and philosophy. I know that previously government and politics was considered a bit easy but we are doing the new version which has stated to be more difficult by our teachers but idk. Kinda regret doing psychology but it’s because I originally wanted to do psychology at university.
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TeaDegree
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(Original post by Doonesbury)
I don't suggest taking one unless you want to. Apply to Cambridge (if you want to) in October as normal and see how your application goes. Your A-levels predictions are good, and Cambridge takes your "crappy" schooling into account *and* having an upward academic trajectory is a good thing too.

What are your A-level subjects?


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Also regarding a gap year, my school keeps suggesting I take one as they consider me to be academically good but said I’ve considered Cambridge too late and that individuals who go to such prestigious universities plan 2 years before. Do you think I could be a successful candidate even with considering it this late?
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TeaDegree
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(Original post by FloralHybrid)
He did psychology, sociology and English literature - Not media 😬

Ibz Mo applied to Cambridge post A-Level grades. Had he applied before he achieved those grades, his GCSE’s would have held more weighting in his application.

Getting 10A*+ GCSE grades isn’t a requirement for Cambridge. But, given that it’s one of the best universities in England, it attracts a high calibre of students, and as a result most of the success applicants will have outstanding academic backgrounds.

So, good/excellent GCSE’s help, yes. But they won’t solely make or break an application.
Oh sorry for that, I recalled him talking about his media experience and assumed incorrectly. Thank for your insight though X
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Paralove
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(Original post by TeaDegree)
Also regarding a gap year, my school keeps suggesting I take one as they consider me to be academically good but said I’ve considered Cambridge too late and that individuals who go to such prestigious universities plan 2 years before. Do you think I could be a successful candidate even with considering it this late?
They're chatting bs. You can absolutely apply this year. You have the whole summer to read around your subject to have things to talk about in your personal statement.

With regard to your A-Level subject choices, it would be worth emailing the colleges you're interested in about how they would view them. In terms of the application process in general they do take into consideration the school you were at, but they might question why you don't have a strong essay subject like English lit or history. Some colleges might require that you have one of those in order to apply, so it's worth checking.

It's worth a shot in applying - you can't get in if you don't apply - but do your research and don't apply to a college that might outright reject your application on the basis of your subject choices at A-Level. If you call or drop them an email they're more than happy to give you advice.
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TeaDegree
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(Original post by Paralove)
They're chatting bs. You can absolutely apply this year. You have the whole summer to read around your subject to have things to talk about in your personal statement.

With regard to your A-Level subject choices, it would be worth emailing the colleges you're interested in about how they would view them. In terms of the application process in general they do take into consideration the school you were at, but they might question why you don't have a strong essay subject like English lit or history. Some colleges might require that you have one of those in order to apply, so it's worth checking.

It's worth a shot in applying - you can't get in if you don't apply - but do your research and don't apply to a college that might outright reject your application on the basis of your subject choices at A-Level. If you call or drop them an email they're more than happy to give you advice.
Thank you sooo much that’s such good advice and the subjects I took, my school told me to. I couldn’t take English as it clashed with philosophy and if I didn’t take philosophy and took another subject like geography then that clashed with psychology. In my school, you can’t pick whatever you want as a lot of the subjects clash. I also originally wanted to take law but that was a clash as well.
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