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    Haha, cadets has nothing to do with maths, but yeah, I know what you mean.

    I think you need the grades and the passion for your subject and some form of extra curricular *something* - for Maths, I've done a few things with UKMT (the Pink Kangaroo and the final of the Team Challenge.)

    I do think that EC activities related to your subjects are *far* more important than other ones, but if you've done something spectacular, such as running your own business, it's definitely worth mentioning. A quick mention of any small things you've done e.g. charity work is a good idea I think.

    Meh, I think I just contradicted myself a few times there. Feel free to ignore me :p:
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    (Original post by fakeplastictrees)
    So from what I'm picking up, the general consensus is that if you have top grades, mentioning things like sports you do isn't really necessary, but can help if your grades could be a bit better?

    What about non-"fun" things you do? Like, things that are related to what you want to study at ICL? Are those really important?

    My teachers have continuously told us that grades aren't enough anymore, that everyone applying to top universities is going to have top grades, and that you need something to make you stand out. Cure the blind, walk on water, etc. :rolleyes:

    I'm applying to Physics for 2010, and my grades are good enough (it's IB, so different from A-levels and a bit more broad), and I'm wondering what to say in my PS, and what kinds of things I can do to make myself stand out a bit more?
    Physics is the sort of subject where a genuine interest, commitment and a love of new ideas and concepts is really important, and you can bet the admission tutors will be looking out for these qualities in every applicant.

    So if you can demonstrate somehow that you have them in plenty, for example any relevant books you've read and enjoyed, lectures/summer schools you've attended, work experience, and anything remotely challenging that you've done regualrly for a long time, which shows commitment, then you will stand out.

    If you're fluent in more than one language, mention that.

    Also, if you run out of space in your PS you can get your tutor to mention stuff you think is important in the reference. Things like examination marks and your ranking in your year group in different subjects are always good to state too, if they're really high, so get your tutor to put them in the ref.

    Oh, and make sure you can convince them you can handle maths, as Physics at Imperial involves more Maths than at most other unis, I'm told...

    You have to really sell yourself to them, so your PS and reference should be very academic but easy enough to read. Say relevant things but try to avoid stuff that a lot of other people will probably talk about as well.

    And as someone else mentioned, they won't care if you like playing the guitar. They need people who really love the subject they want to study, and have the brains and dedication required to survive the 3 or 4 years at ICL.

    Hope that helps. Best of luck!
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    (Original post by kpatb)
    It seems that people who have been made offers have all got the grades, but also done something extra in the field they are applying for (Eg the person who was an Air Cadet and the few people who had their own comapnies or whatever)

    What about the rest of us mere normal mortals?
    How is being an air cadet related to Mathematics? :confused: Anyway, I see from your profile that you're still waiting on GCSE results, that means you have plenty of time to find something to do that's even marginally related to the subject you want to apply for. And as sunspoon said, it doesn't really matter whether it's related or not, so long as you can show that it has taught you something (e.g. you might have learned to meet strict deadlines or work in a large team thanks to a summer job).
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    (Original post by lykastar)
    Physics is the sort of subject where a genuine interest, commitment and a love of new ideas and concepts is really important, and you can bet the admission tutors will be looking out for these qualities in every applicant.

    So if you can demonstrate somehow that you have them in plenty, for example any relevant books you've read and enjoyed, lectures/summer schools you've attended, work experience, and anything remotely challenging that you've done regualrly for a long time, which shows commitment, then you will stand out.

    If you're fluent in more than one language, mention that.

    Also, if you run out of space in your PS you can get your tutor to mention stuff you think is important in the reference. Things like examination marks and your ranking in your year group in different subjects are always good to state too, if they're really high, so get your tutor to put them in the ref.

    Oh, and make sure you can convince them you can handle maths, as Physics at Imperial involves more Maths than at most other unis, I'm told...

    You have to really sell yourself to them, so your PS and reference should be very academic but easy enough to read. Say relevant things but try to avoid stuff that a lot of other people will probably talk about as well.

    And as someone else mentioned, they won't care if you like playing the guitar. They need people who really love the subject they want to study, and have the brains and dedication required to survive the 3 or 4 years at ICL.

    Hope that helps. Best of luck!
    Thanks a lot, this did help!

    I am fluent in two languages. How can I mention this without it seeming irrelevant, though?

    I have a (slightly) off-topic question, though. I don't know much about applications, and I'm Canadian, so I know even less about UK applications. How do references work? Do you get one teacher to write something up about you and attach it to your application, or do you get multiple...?
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    one teacher (probably your headteacher/principal) writes a reference for you and attaches it to your application. If you apply through ucas through your school you'll never see the reference though, but if you apply through ucas by yourself you have to attach the reference for them I think. Have a look at the ucas webpage www.ucas.com and it explains it all pretty much
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    sorry, try this page, itll probably be moer useful, http://ucas.com/students/nonukstudents/
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    Lol at OP:
    So what did you state in your application as your GCSE, AS/A level results as well as any other qualifications, musical instruments, talents etc...
    Kinda implies that what you put down on your application is up for debate... you can only tell the truth you know!!!

    I put down all my GCSEs (11A*s), All my full A-levels (Maths, Further Maths, Chemistry, English, General Studies) and my French AS, which I got all As in...I decided to leave off my Critical Thinking AS which was a B

    I also put down all of my modules marks (especially as Imperial use them for certain subjects...like maths they want As in ALL maths/further maths modules)...but I put them down for all subjects...just to try to make yourself look as impressive exams wise as possible! Luckily I've got As in every module I've taken so far... hopefully results next week will carry on the trend and I'll be able to match my offer of AAA and get into Imperial!!!

    In my personal statement I talked about positions of responsibility at school, ABRSM music grades, sports, arts EVERYTHING...but also a load of rubbish about how i found maths beautiful...when in fact i just enjoy doing it, end of!
    might explain why i got rejected from oxford lol...they could see through my lies!!
    but, i didnt have to have an interview at imperial, which i think is quite unusual??....
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    (Original post by pangea)
    but, i didnt have to have an interview at imperial, which i think is quite unusual??....
    It depends on the subject I guess. As far as I know not every department requires all applicants to attend an interview, but it might just be that they were particularly impressed by your personal statement
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    (Original post by fakeplastictrees)
    Thanks a lot, this did help!

    I am fluent in two languages. How can I mention this without it seeming irrelevant, though?

    I have a (slightly) off-topic question, though. I don't know much about applications, and I'm Canadian, so I know even less about UK applications. How do references work? Do you get one teacher to write something up about you and attach it to your application, or do you get multiple...?
    It's up to you how/where to mention languages you speak. Anywhere you can fit a line about them, for example if in your personal statement you say you've lived in other countries/travelled extensively etc.

    In my case, my tutor put it in the referernce because the ref was more about me as a person than my personal statement.

    It's good to mention that you can speak more than one language, not only because ICL attracts students from all over the world, but also because there is quite a strong positive correlation between fluency in more than language and intelligence.

    I would also suggest you request to see your reference before you send it to Imperial, and make sure your tutor has seen your personal statement before they start drafting the ref (to avoid repetitions). I had a meeting with my tutor where we sat down and listed everything remotely relevant to Physics (and Maths) that I had ever done, and also things like work experience, any positions of responsibility I'd been in, voluntary work, any courses I'd done to prepare for myself for uni, countries I'd lived in, languages I speak. I basically gave her a load of info about myself that she could talk about in the ref, as she had only known me for a year. She then got me to check the ref in case there was anything she'd not explained correctly (which is always a possibility).

    Imperial is one of the best in the world so you want the best possible personal statement and reference (without lies, lol) to send them.

    If you're at school when you apply through UCAS, once you've filled in your application it would go to your tutor so they can verify your qualifications, insert predicted grades and also the reference (it's all online). Once that's done, UCAS will forward your application to the unis you've chosen.
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    (Original post by Emc2)
    It depends on the subject I guess. As far as I know not every department requires all applicants to attend an interview, but it might just be that they were particularly impressed by your personal statement
    yer, maybe..i dunno to be honest! just that some people at my school (international applicants, though) had to go for interview...maybe that's part of the "english" test or something.

    i'd like to think it was the latter though .... I dont know about you, but I never put so much effort into so few words!!!!
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    Thanks, Scottish_Gurl for the UCAS link. I'm so impressed by this system, it seems about a million times more advanced than the North American system (or lack thereof )

    (Original post by lykastar)
    It's up to you how/where to mention languages you speak. Anywhere you can fit a line about them, for example if in your personal statement you say you've lived in other countries/travelled extensively etc.

    In my case, my tutor put it in the referernce because the ref was more about me as a person than my personal statement.

    It's good to mention that you can speak more than one language, not only because ICL attracts students from all over the world, but also because there is quite a strong positive correlation between fluency in more than language and intelligence.

    I would also suggest you request to see your reference before you send it to Imperial, and make sure your tutor has seen your personal statement before they start drafting the ref (to avoid repetitions). I had a meeting with my tutor where we sat down and listed everything remotely relevant to Physics (and Maths) that I had ever done, and also things like work experience, any positions of responsibility I'd been in, voluntary work, any courses I'd done to prepare for myself for uni, countries I'd lived in, languages I speak. I basically gave her a load of info about myself that she could talk about in the ref, as she had only known me for a year. She then got me to check the ref in case there was anything she'd not explained correctly (which is always a possibility).

    Imperial is one of the best in the world so you want the best possible personal statement and reference (without lies, lol) to send them.

    If you're at school when you apply through UCAS, once you've filled in your application it would go to your tutor so they can verify your qualifications, insert predicted grades and also the reference (it's all online). Once that's done, UCAS will forward your application to the unis you've chosen.
    Hmm... from the looks of it, I should get my IB Coordinator to write my reference, despite the fact that she is has never taught me directly, only managed my courses and stuff. Hmm. Maybe I could get her to talk to my other teachers or something. I'll definitely ask her to sit down with me and talk about the reference, that's a great idea.
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    (Original post by Emc2)
    How is being an air cadet related to Mathematics? :confused: Anyway, I see from your profile that you're still waiting on GCSE results, that means you have plenty of time to find something to do that's even marginally related to the subject you want to apply for. And as sunspoon said, it doesn't really matter whether it's related or not, so long as you can show that it has taught you something (e.g. you might have learned to meet strict deadlines or work in a large team thanks to a summer job).

    Well that was perhaps a bad example, but it seemed like the jobs were a bit more "unusual" and quite impressive.

    But I have to ask: What did you do to get your offer? :P and congrats on the offer!

    This has really opened my eyes up to options, for the future.
    Thanks for the advice (: much appreciated
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    (Original post by pangea)
    yer, maybe..i dunno to be honest! just that some people at my school (international applicants, though) had to go for interview...maybe that's part of the "english" test or something.

    i'd like to think it was the latter though .... I dont know about you, but I never put so much effort into so few words!!!!
    I think we've all been through that I started writing my personal statement over the bank holiday weekend in August last year and only finished tweaking it by mid October, when I finally sent off my application. I think it's a rite of passage that any 17/18 year old should have to go through, it really makes you think about yourself and what you've achieved so far and what you really want from your life
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    (Original post by kpatb)
    it seemed like the jobs were a bit more "unusual" and quite impressive.
    LOL at being a cadet being referred to as a job.
    To be fair, being a sergeant feels like it sometimes
    Still, 2 months til I leave :woo:
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    (Original post by fakeplastictrees)
    I am fluent in two languages. How can I mention this without it seeming irrelevant, though?
    I mentioned French science magazines that I read in my own time. Had a nice chat with my interviewers about the different styles of science magazines, because I dislike most English language ones like New Scientist :eviltongue:.

    Also the importance of languages & communicating science blah blah blah. Seemed to work.

    And sports? Well at UCL (I know, it's not IC) I spent a good chunk of my interview discussing netball with the interviewer cuz she's a fellow netballer. You never know what your interviewer is into.
 
 
 
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