Rejected by Bristol for Economics. Watch

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Paulwhy
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Given the recent rejection by Bristol of candidates with Oxbridge offers, I decided to investigate.This is the edited highlights of the UCAS Bristol Economics Entry Profile, plus my comments:
Special features

* All of our degrees have a strong quantitative element, emphasising the statistical methods used to apply economics in practice, with the necessary mathematical and computing skills. That is why maths is an entrance requirement for all of our programmes, at the equivalent of A Level. Our graduates probably have stronger quantitative skills than those of any other British university (as employers recognise)
indicate high value on FM?

General Skills:
You will gain the analytical, quantitative, and computing skills that are in demand by a wide range of employers. You will also develop: problem solving ability; strategic planning skills; time management and self-organisation; communication skills (written and oral); and teamworking skills.
Good stuff to show in PS.

Entry statistics
55 places (for L100, L101, L140). Typical offer: A Level AAA-ABB including Mathematics.
Variable offer, less places than many other unis.

Application and selection
Is the course right for me?

* All our programmes require a combination of skills in the humanities and strong quantitative ability, both demanded by employers.
Want humanities as well as maths? High value on History/Geography/Languages at AS/A-level?

What skills, qualities, and experience do I need?

1) * You'll need to demonstrate an interest in and commitment to the subject. Do you have a keen interest in current affairs (particularly economic and political issues)? Have you tried to find out more about the subject by reading any relevant texts? What aspects of the subject are you particularly interested in? Please note that Economics A Level is not a requirement.
want evidemce of moving beyond A-level Econ?

2) * Our degree programmes place an emphasis on the importance of mathematical and statistical methods in modern economics. We require A Level Mathematics or Pure Mathematics at grade A for L140 Economics and Econometrics, LG11 Economics and Mathematics and VL51 Philosophy and Economics, and at grade B or better for our other programmes.


3) * We will want to see that you have skills in the humanities as well as a strong mathematical ability. We are unlikely to make you an offer if you are studying Maths, Further Maths and only one other subject, especially if that subject is a science and your GCSEs are weak in the humanities. We do not accept A Level General Studies or Critical Thinking.


4) * In order to succeed on the course you will need to be able to think clearly. Do you enjoy thinking of potential solutions to problems? Are you willing to see things from different perspectives, and not just look for an easy answer?


* You'll need to be prepared to work independently, but will also need to work well with other students in classes.


* Do you have excellent written English skills? These can be usefully demonstrated by your personal statement.


* We're also interested to hear about your non-academic achievement and experience, any extracurricular activities, voluntary and paid work, and positions of responsibility. What skills have you gained by these activities? How have you contributed to your community?


How to apply

Tips for your application

* We'll be looking to see that your personal statement explains your interest in the subject, how you possess the desirable skills (above), and how the course is appropriate to your future plans.


* We expect the reference to provide: predictions of examination marks and explanation of less common qualifications such as Access courses and Foundation Years; an overall assessment of the candidate and their suitability for further study; a discussion of earlier exam results and any exceptional circumstances; a discussion of the candidate's intellectual curiosity, interests and suitability for the subject; discussion of extracurricular interests.


The selection process

* UCAS forms are assessed by at least two members of the admissions team. We aim to process all forms within three weeks of our receipt of the form.


*0) We are initially concerned to check that you have A Level Mathematics (or equivalent), and that you are predicted or have achieved A Level ABB for Economics courses (or BBC for Accounting courses) in subjects that are accepted by the department (i.e. not A Level General Studies or Critical Thinking).


* We will then evaluate your UCAS form taking account of:
1) the mix of A-level subjects you are offering we prefer you to have at least one essay-based A Level (my bold)
2) A Level performance/ prediction; the reference
3) GCSE performance
4) the personal statement:
4i) (evidence of interest in and commitment to the subject
4ii) evidence of clear thinking and understanding
4iii) intellectual curiosity
4iv) reading or research beyond the A Level syllabus
4v) a high standard of written English
4vi) skills and interest in foreign language and culture (if applying to study abroad);
4vii) non-academic achievement or experience
4viii); positions of responsibility
4ix), interest in hobbies or pastimes
4x) voluntary work
4xi) work experience.

In all cases we attempt to take account of the opportunities available to candidates
Hence possible reasons for rejection that may be more likely than you think:
1)lack of essay based subjects at AS/A-level.
2)Lack of Humanities subjects at AS/A-level.
3)Lack of FM

(I think would not count Economics A-level as an essay based subject. i.e. it includes other forms of assessment as well. e.g. Multiple-choice, calculations, short questions).

Also check out the Economics School admissions guide:
http://www.efm.bris.ac.uk/prospectiv...sStatement.pdf
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Deipnosophist123
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Thanks for looking into this Paul, it's certainly become even more interesting with today's round of rejections (on top of the round a fortnight or so ago)

(Original post by Paulwhy)
Hence possible reasons for rejection that may be more likely than you think:
1)lack of essay based subjects at AS/A-level.
2)Lack of Humanities subjects at AS/A-level.
3)Lack of FM
Not that I want to dispute your findings, but I do two essay subjects at A2, and a language (4 A2s). One of them is a humanity (History). Whilst my application lacks FM, people with that subject still got rejected a few weeks back.

The confusion continues, in my opinion at least.
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mizzsnazzter
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that was really interesting to read, where did you find all the information? x
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thenewromance1234
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Mine lacks humanities. Mine is just Maths, FM, Physics and Economics
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Daniel Freedman
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My friend (state school) was rejected with 10A*s at gcse, Aaaa in year 12 (maths, economics and geography) and predicted aAAA in year 13 (further maths, economics and geography).

What are Bristol doing?
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Paulwhy
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(Original post by mizzsnazzter)
that was really interesting to read, where did you find all the information? x
It is the online UCAS Entry profile for Economics at Bristol.
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TheBrightShadow
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thats a very detailed report, where di you get that from?
i got an offer of maths, physics and economics (my AS was chemistry)
also the course is VERY mathematical, more so than other unis i know about
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ExRx123
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I heard Bristol like to reject people who come from private schools.
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Paulwhy
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(Original post by Deipnosophist123)
Thanks for looking into this Paul, it's certainly become even more interesting with today's round of rejections (on top of the round a fortnight or so ago)



Not that I want to dispute your findings
Please do. i.e. the Bristol Entry profile is relevant but not a provider of complete answers.
(Original post by Deipnosophist123)
, but I do two essay subjects at A2, and a language (4 A2s). One of them is a humanity (History).
Are you counting Economics as an essay subject?
(Original post by Deipnosophist123)
Whilst my application lacks FM, people with that subject still got rejected a few weeks back.

The confusion continues, in my opinion at least.
Looks to me like they want FM and a humanity. which with Maths and Econ makes (at least!) 4 A-levels.
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Paulwhy
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(Original post by El Mariachi)
I heard Bristol like to reject people who come from private schools.
(Original post by Bristol EP)
In all cases we attempt to take account of the opportunities available to candidates
So whilst that does not suggest they get utility from rejecting Independent School pupils, it does suggest they do consider candidates educational background.
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River Hippo
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(Original post by Paulwhy)
Hence possible reasons for rejection that may be more likely than you think:
1)lack of essay based subjects at AS/A-level.
2)Lack of Humanities subjects at AS/A-level.
3)Lack of FM
I always had the impression that subject choice didn't really matter, as long as you were doing 'proper' subjects. I can understand why they place emphasis on FM, but surely a candidate who does really well in normal maths A level, and has a better overall application will be preferred to an average applicant with FM. Also, I doubt there would be many applicants with Maths, FM, Econ, History and French for example, because they are very different subjects. I would guess that the majority of people doing Maths and FM will also do science subjects like Physics or Chem instead of History or French. So to place such great emphasis on subject choice would surely mean they lose many of the best candidates? I'm rambling so I'll stop.
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Mustard-man
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I thought for a second you had applied for a phd transfer to Bristol (somehow ) and got rejected, Paul :p:
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Paulwhy
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(Original post by River Hippo)
I always had the impression that subject choice didn't really matter, as long as you were doing 'proper' subjects.
well for econ's will always value both essay based and quantative subjects
i.e. economists need to be good with both words and numbers

(Original post by River Hippo)
I can understand why they place emphasis on FM, but surely a candidate who does really well in normal maths A level, and has a better overall application will be preferred to an average applicant with FM.
I am not sure there are many average FM candidates i.e
i). FM has a very high % of candidates getting A.
ii) Only the best Maths students take FM.

(Original post by River Hippo)
Also, I doubt there would be many applicants with Maths, FM, Econ, History and French for example, because they are very different subjects. I would guess that the majority of people doing Maths and FM will also do science subjects like Physics or Chem instead of History or French.
Well if they are thinking of doing econ at a top 10uni then it would be a good idea to do a humanity as well even if "only" to AS-level. But yes a lot of FM candidates will be naturally science based.

(Original post by River Hippo)
So to place such great emphasis on subject choice would surely mean they lose many of the best candidates?
Potentially. All unis have their own differing ideas about whom the best candidates are. But it is certainly the case that:
i)Economics is a subject where having a broad base is very helpful
ii)Essay subjects show you can form an argument.
iii)The content in subjects like History and Geography would be very helpful.

And yes they would want high grades as well.


(Original post by River Hippo)
I'm rambling so I'll stop.
Not exactly rambling but it was a lot of content for just one paragraph!!
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abcdefghijklmnopqrstuvwxyz
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(Original post by Paulwhy)

1)lack of essay based subjects at AS/A-level.
2)Lack of Humanities subjects at AS/A-level.
3)Lack of FM
i fit into lack of FM only

should try and find out how many state school kids/private school kids got accepted/rejected

imo i think it's based on

1) oxbridge/higher uni applicant?
2) state school private school?

as well
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azhao
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Sorry how do Bristol know people applied to Oxbridge?
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Paulwhy
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(Original post by azhao)
Sorry how do Bristol know people applied to Oxbridge?
Well they don't not directly. But they do know when the Oxbridge deadline is. (Not that I am in the Oxbridge explanation camp.)
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innerpartysystem
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(Original post by azhao)
Sorry how do Bristol know people applied to Oxbridge?
The date of application would usually give it away.
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TheBrightShadow
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(Original post by azhao)
Sorry how do Bristol know people applied to Oxbridge?
most of the people that apply before end of october (cant remember exact date) are oxbridge people (because thats their deadline)
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azhao
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Those *******s
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River Hippo
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(Original post by Paulwhy)
well for econ's will always value both essay based and quantative subjects
i.e. economists need to be good with both words and numbers

Fair enough, but surely the essays you do in Econ A level count for something, although they may not be as indicative of essay writing skills as History.

I am not sure there are many average FM candidates i.e
i). FM has a very high % of candidates getting A.
ii) Only the best Maths students take FM.

What I meant was average candidates overall, for example they may have an A in Maths and FM, but maybe a low A in their third subject, and average PS, reference etc.


Well if they are thinking of doing econ at a top 10uni then it would be a good idea to do a humanity as well even if "only" to AS-level. But yes a lot of FM candidates will be naturally science based.


Potentially. All unis have their own differing ideas about whom the best candidates are. But it is certainly the case that:
i)Economics is a subject where having a broad base is very helpful
ii)Essay subjects show you can form an argument.
iii)The content in subjects like History and Geography would be very helpful.

And yes they would want high grades as well.



Not exactly rambling but it was a lot of content for just one paragraph!!
:p: I agree with most of what you're saying, but it just doesn't seem right to me that they place so much emphasis on subject choice. After all, just because you don't choose a subject at A level doesn't mean you aren't good at it.
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