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    I am 34 and trying to get into uni. I have 5 gcse's all over C grade. However I have no A levels (went straight into work).

    I have a place on an access course. However I dont want to waste another year doing it...and the other students at the open evening are retards! also money is tight and will be tighter if I study, so dont want to rack up another year of debt just to prove I can read a write.

    What should I do? Apply and vastly overplay my experience? (its a building studies degree) or get some dodgy a level certs?
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    I am 34 and trying to get into uni. I have 5 gcse's all over C grade. However I have no A levels (went straight into work).

    I have a place on an access course at my local college. However I dont want to waste another year doing it...and the other students at the open evening are retards! also money is tight and will be tighter if I study, so dont want to rack up another year of debt just to prove I can read a write.

    What should I do? Apply and vastly overplay my experience? (its a building studies degree and they say they accept relevant experience) or get some dodgy a level certs?

    The uni i am applying to is a former poly...if that makes any differance?
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    If its building studies apply away, talk it over with the tutors and if you're genuine you may well get a place

    Phone them!

    Oh and good luck getting a job in construction.
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    (Original post by seagullboy)
    I am 34 and trying to get into uni. I have 5 gcse's all over C grade. However I have no A levels (went straight into work).

    I have a place on an access course at my local college. However I dont want to waste another year doing it...and the other students at the open evening are retards! also money is tight and will be tighter if I study, so dont want to rack up another year of debt just to prove I can read a write.

    What should I do? Apply and vastly overplay my experience? (its a building studies degree and they say they accept relevant experience) or get some dodgy a level certs?

    The uni i am applying to is a former poly...if that makes any differance?
    Maybe you should contact the uni and ask what to do. They might have a different policy for mature students.
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    My friend got a place at uni as a mature student, to study Psychology and she had similar gcse's and an NVQ in childcare. I'd ring the uni's you were thinking of applying and see if they would accept you as you are, or if there is anything they'd like you to do to enhance your application
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    (Original post by seagullboy)
    I am 34 and trying to get into uni. I have 5 gcse's all over C grade. However I have no A levels (went straight into work).

    I have a place on an access course. However I dont want to waste another year doing it...and the other students at the open evening are retards! also money is tight and will be tighter if I study, so dont want to rack up another year of debt just to prove I can read a write.

    What should I do? Apply and vastly overplay my experience? (its a building studies degree) or get some dodgy a level certs?
    It's most unlikely that you will get a uni place, even as a mature student, without doing the Access course. It's also worth doing because it gets you back into the habit of study and gives you a chance to prepare for uni life, which might otherwise be such a shock to the system that your first year is more difficult than it needs to be!
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    You generally need proof of recent study as Minerva says, but it does not have to be via an access course - evening courses for A-levels can work (and I know people who did their recent study via the OU), depends what the uni will accept.
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    If the degree is related to your experience and the uni not one of the top in the country (more lower bottom), you might have a chance to get straight in (and I know people who have done this even in their 40s and succeeded). You might need to prove your academic ability by writing a short essay and/or in an interview. Best bet is to call admission tutors and talk to them. First year should be enough to get you into studying, but you've got to seek as much support as possible and talk to your lecturers about the topics and material outside of the class room.
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    I'd do the Access course if I were you, I've just done it and am glad I did now as its got me ready for university learning whereas if I'd have gone straight in then I think I would have struggled
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    I agree with the other posts. Do the Access, don't underestimate how usefull it will be in preparing you for university study. For me it was also more difficult than I expected, and stretched me more than I thought it would. I am 41 so age/time was also a consideration. However, I think the extra year is well worth it.
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    (Original post by seagullboy)
    the other students at the open evening are retards!
    The retards will be filtered as they drop out and fail over the first few months of the course.
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    Hello there

    From the higher ed research I've done over this year...

    The Access route is designed for us "mature students"... particularly if you haven't got evidence of recent study... in last 3 years was advised to me. I also understand that the courses are delivered in more of a "uni-format" than an A level, thus preparing you better for uni study... (I start my access course in September 09, so can't say whether this is true or not... maybe someone else who's completed their access course & started their degree can share their experience?)

    Yet as other posters have mentioned, it's best to contact your favoured universities direct to find out what they require/accept, as your individual life experience may gain you entry to the degree.

    Good luck!
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    (Original post by seagullboy)
    What should I do?
    Firstly, perhaps you could stop using derogatory words like 'retards', especially against your potential fellow students.

    Secondly, I believe it depends on the university, as some do allow mature students to enter without an access course; though, they will most likely expect an essay from you instead, to make sure you can cope with degree-level work.
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    Like some of the other posts have recommended, I would do the Access course.

    I've just completed mine and I think it was absolutely, definitely worth it. If you're worried about the extra year before uni - don't be, the level of work on my course was quite intense and the year flew by!

    Having been out of education for over 10 years, I now feel a lot more prepared to start Uni in September - more than I did this time last year. Even though I do have A Levels, I was still advised that I would need to show recent evidence of academic study and I felt that the Access course would be the best option for me. If you currently work in the field that you want to study your degree in, you may stand a better chance of getting in without any academic evidence but again, speaking to the admissions office at the Uni would prob be your best first step in knowing what to do.

    As another post said the format of the Access course is geared towards preparing you for HE study and on my course there was a lot of emphasis on developing study skills which was excellent for me having been out of education for such a long time.

    I'm 33 and found that the mix of ages on my course also prepared me for working with and being around younger students, which will undoubtedly be the same at Uni.

    Whatever you choose to do, good luck!
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    [QUOTE=MissOki]Firstly, perhaps you could stop using derogatory words like 'retards', especially against your potential fellow students.
    QUOTE]

    I concur. This man,or should i say boy,has a very poor attitude.He is even thinking of getting some dogdy A level certificates.With such an attitude.......he needs all the luck he can get.
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    An Access course is far more than simply being able to prove you can write: you develop your critical thinking, analytical thinking, presentation skills, academic skills, research, referencing, discussion skills, study skills etc., even about diversity

    It wouldn't be a "waste" of a year either. Life, in general, is all about networking and the people you come across during your Access year can form a part of the network which could serve you, not only to get into University, but afterwards too.

    Deciding on your future based on the personalities of potential students in your Access group is a mistake, IMO. You won't be attending for the purpose of winning lifelong friends and influencing people Should you make firm friendships, that is a bonus, but shouldn't be an aim. If other students are not committed/able/as interested, you shouldn't even give them a 2nd thought. It's about *your* committment/abilities/determination and goals.

    "Vastly overplay your experience" would be like shooting yourself in the foot. You risk being caught out Besides, the only person you are really conning is yourself.

    The certificate you earn on your Access Course is by no means some "dodgy a level cert" (and is insulting to those who have successfully completed an Access Course and *earned* their certificate).

    I've just completed an Access course; the previous year I did another course geared towards a C&G equivalent of GCSE Math & English "C" grade. I was happy to go the long route because I'm in my 40's and school is a far distant memory tagged at the back of a lot of life experience.

    An Access course is a brilliant way of being broken in gently to the disciplines of University study. The tutors write your reference and know precisely what level of competencies are required. Completing the UCAS application is high on the agenda in the first term and their help and advice is priceless - so too with applications for finance. They will advise you on your Personal Statement and double check it for you before you submit it too.

    The workload begins at a comfortable level and you won't fully appreciate just how much work you cover until the end and you look back. By that same token, comparing your work from the beginning and how you develop in a relatively short amount of time (9mths in real terms!) can be very encouraging.

    By the end of the first term, a number of people had dropped out; mostly because they couldn't cope with the workload or the discipline of deadlines. By the end of the course, a further two people didn't achieve their certificates - they turned up, they failed to produce the work.

    Not everyone completed all the assignments on the course, but one University (former poly) was happy to make a conditional offer with 20 units while other Uni's expected all 23 units to be passed.

    The money aspect is a great concern for everyone. Having said that, the majority of my group were able to work evenings/weekends in addition to their studies - again, it's a time management issue. Those same people will be working part time to supplement their University studies, so, no difference really - except it gave them an insight into how realistic studying and working would be.

    In the main, the greatest deciding factor between those who were successful and those who were not came down to one simple element, attitude! Not their intelligence, aspirations, age, gender, life experiences, previous qualifications, religion or anything else - *attitude* was the key element to success.
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    (Original post by seagullboy)
    I am 34 and trying to get into uni. I have 5 gcse's all over C grade. However I have no A levels (went straight into work).

    I have a place on an access course. However I dont want to waste another year doing it...and the other students at the open evening are retards! also money is tight and will be tighter if I study, so dont want to rack up another year of debt just to prove I can read a write.

    What should I do? Apply and vastly overplay my experience? (its a building studies degree) or get some dodgy a level certs?
    I would recommend doing a Access Course seagullboy as its more a fasttrack option and gets you the quals to get into university a lot faster than the 2 year a level option.I wont pre-judge a Access Course at first look really.also with regards to the other students,give them a chance you might find you share things in common more than u think but thats my view
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    (Original post by seagullboy)
    I am 34 and trying to get into uni. I have 5 gcse's all over C grade. However I have no A levels (went straight into work).

    I have a place on an access course. However I dont want to waste another year doing it...and the other students at the open evening are retards! also money is tight and will be tighter if I study, so dont want to rack up another year of debt just to prove I can read a write.

    What should I do? Apply and vastly overplay my experience? (its a building studies degree) or get some dodgy a level certs?
    You should do the Access course, so what if the other students were 'retards', you're not going there to make friends, you're going there to get qualifications to goto uni and widen your career prospects.

    I took the access course and found it excellent, when they mark things they grade them with an indication as to what types of grades you would get at uni and with me they were spot on. The course really focuses you and gets you back into the habit of studying and doing work.
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    I am starting my access course in Sept 09 too so am really excited! Thanks for this thread, (and to Aspiring) its given alot of insightful info!
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    (Original post by DemisC)
    I am starting my access course in Sept 09 too so am really excited! Thanks for this thread, (and to Aspiring) its given alot of insightful info!
    Good luck (you won't need it ) and enjoy the experience! :gthumb:
 
 
 
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