Putting an Oxbridge application into context_2_ by hcj


									An Introduction to
the UCAS Process
   for Hampton
 Parents & Pupils
      The Higher Education
7.30. The UCAS Process: a Hampton
  perspective Patrick Talbot, Head of Careers &
8.00. The UCAS Process: a University
  perspective Matthew Harrison, University of
8.30. Oxford & Cambridge Entry: a Hampton
  perspective. Andrew Wilkinson, Senior Tutor &
  Oxbridge Coordinator. Lecture Theatre.
  or Q & A on Higher Education. Panel.
  Higher Education Calendar
    2011-2012 Spring Term

• Start of Oxbridge Programme.
• CourseFinder Questionnaire & Report.
• Introductory session about American
  University applications.
• Presentation to pupils about Higher
  Education from the University of
  Higher Education Calendar
   2011-2012 Summer Term
• Thursday 28th April. Higher Education
• Friday 10th June. Higher Education
  matters: Writing a Personal Statement;
  Attendance at Higher Education Fair at
• Thursday 30th June. Visit to the
  University of Bristol Open Day.
      Applying to university: the
          longer term plan
• Summer 2011: make informed decisions about
  course and institutions. First draft of a Personal
  Statement completed by the end of June 10th
  and improvement through the term.
• September 2011: complete UCAS application.
  Deadline for Oxbridge, Medicine, Dentistry &
  Veterinary applications is October 15th. Their
  school internal deadline is 4 pm on Monday 26th
  September. Everyone else: as soon as possible.
       Oxford & Cambridge
      Applicants must also …
• June: finalise college and course choice. Discuss
  prospects for Oxford and Cambridge with relevant Heads
  of Department. Establish details of any prepared work
  you need to take for your chosen course.
• Summer holidays: prepare for written tests and
  interviews as necessary. You will need to demonstrate a
  lively and well-developed interest in your chosen subject.
  Consolidate your Lower sixth work, and extend your
  knowledge to A2 and indeed beyond the A Level
  syllabus. You must do extra reading. Select your other
  university choices.
         Strategy for university
• 1) You perform: AS module scores achieved in
  Lower 6th are extremely important.
• 2) We predict: Predictions by departments are
  based on AS module achievements and are
• 3) You apply to universities. All being well, you
  receive offers.
• 4) You perform in the AS and A2 modules.
• 5) You get into university by fulfilling offer(s).
   What sort of students do universities

• LSE is looking for bright, questioning, self-motivated
  students who are not daunted by the challenge of living
  and studying in an extremely cosmopolitan and
  intellectually demanding atmosphere.

• The University of Edinburgh’s Undergraduate
  Admissions Statement includes:
• Potential to derive the greatest benefit from university
  study will also be assessed by adducing evidence of the
  applicant’s commitment to higher education, their
  motivation to succeed, their suitability for the chosen
  programme and whether they have the personal
  resourcefulness to handle the challenges of a
  university education.
• Remember: order is important!
• What subject ? then Which university
• League Tables are a start but don’t take small
  differences in ranking to be too significant. Always look
  at how the rankings are scored. There are several
  versions of League tables.
• There is a huge amount of information on
  www.ucas.com. Also, try www.uni-uk.co.uk and
• Look over Prospectuses. Get your own copies.
• Read objective accounts of universities; listen to
  subjective opinions.
• Visit universities when you can.
• Short list and then decide on choices.
• The UCAS system is the medium through
  which you apply to universities in the UK.
  The Universities and Colleges
  Admissions Service is based in
• We are an all-in electronic application
  school, using the on-line version. The cost
  is £21 per candidate.
• Those of you who will apply for Oxford or
  Cambridge, for Medicine, Veterinary
  Science or Dentistry will be completing
  your application from the start of the
  Autumn term and working to completion in
  advance of the October 15th deadline.
• We wish everyone else to complete their
  UCAS applications as soon as possible in
            How UCAS works
• You can apply for up to five choices on the UCAS form.
• There should be real consistency in the courses
• Candidates for Medicine, Dentistry and Veterinary
  Science need only to make four choices.
• Your chosen universities do not see where else you
  have applied.
• From your offers, you make one Firm and one
  Insurance choice, and reject the rest. This will be
  around February/March/April time.
• If all goes well with your A Levels, you will go to your
  Firm choice.
              The UCAS Tariff
• The UCAS Tariff is the expression of the results that
  you need in order to satisfy any university’s entrance
• However, the top or selecting universities will still
  require individual A Level grades: the lower or
  recruiting universities give points-based offers.
• An A grade at A Level is worth 120 points for a six-unit
  award. A B is worth 100 points, and so on. Standard
  offers are based on 3 A Levels only – assume unless
  told otherwise that General Studies will not be included,
  nor as a rule will a single AS level. A few of the selecting
  universities have recently taken to giving an AS target in
  the offer in addition to 3 A Levels.
     Selecting and Recruiting
• If you take the rank order of the ‘league tables,’
  universities towards the top have far too many applicants
  for available places and need to select students.
• Universities towards the bottom tend to have fewer
  applicants per place and sometimes need to recruit
• Hamptonians will be choosing their universities from
  selecting institutions, and competition is stiffest at the
  top of the ‘league tables.’ the most notable grouping of
  these selecting universities is the Russell Group.
      Be aware of the Russell
• 20 leading UK universities who are
  research-led. Cambridge, Oxford, Birmingham, Bristol,
  Cardiff, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Imperial, King’s, Leeds, Liverpool,
  LSE, Manchester, Newcastle, Nottingham, Queen’s Belfast,
  Sheffield, Southampton, UCL and Warwick.

• 68% of 2011 Hamptonian applications are
  to Russell Group universities.
• For 2010 applicants, 11 of the leading 15
  destinations and 62% of final applicant
  choices were Russell Group universities.
              The consistency of an
•   You should plan to apply to courses broadly in line with your predicted

•   Example: I am predicted ABB and I wish to study Geography.

•   For my 5 choices:
•   I most want to go to Geography at St. Andrews.: typical offer is AAB.
•   I have also selected Geography BSc at Birmingham, Leeds and Leicester. All
    have typical ABB offers.
•   I have added Physical Geography at Aberystwyth. Typically 280-320 points.
•   I have three choices in line with my predictions.
•   I am aiming high for St. Andrews because I want to go there most.
•    I am adding Aberystwyth in case I don’t do as well as predicted.
•   The spectrum of my choices runs from 300 points (equivalent to BBB ) up to
    AAB (equivalent to 340 points). My predicted grades lie towards the top of the
•   My subject choice are consistent, one course being a little more specialised.
      Selling your application!
• An Admissions Tutor looks primarily at certain evidence
  to select candidates.
• Most important are the School’s predicted grades
  and reference. You will know your A Level predictions
  before you apply.
• Your Personal Statement provides important support
  material. For an Oxbridge application, it is instrumental in
  getting you to the next stage of an Interview. For most
  non-Oxbridge applications, it may well be a substitute for
  an Interview!
• A “count back” to your GCSE grades is also
  important. Some departments of some universities may
  formally use GCSE scores to rank candidates.
     The dilemma for selecting

• Universities are increasingly dissatisfied
  with A Level grades as discriminators of
  ability. Hence, the varied use of
  admissions tests; the inclusion of an AS
  target in offers; countback to GCSEs;
  the acceptance of EPQs (although not
  inclusion in offers).
          Places available
• Bear in mind that a university department
  only has so many places available.
  Selecting universities are oversubscribed;
  you may find yourself on the wrong side of
  a numbers game. Incidentally, universities
  will make more offers than it has places
  available. If you satisfy that offer by
  making the grades, then you are in! If not,
  don’t expect any favours!
     Example: applying for
    Economics at Nottingham

• Last year they had 2,500 applications.

• 1,200 of those had AAA predictions!

• They gave about 200 Offers for 123
    Main University Destinations for
     Hamptonians in 2009 & 2010
In 2009                       In 2010
• Nottingham 19               • Oxford 12
• Oxford 18                   • Bristol 12
• Bristol 10                  • Durham 12
• Bath 9                      • Cambridge 9
• Manchester 9                • Southampton 9
• Durham 8                    • Exeter 8
• Warwick 8                   • King’s College London 7
• Leeds 7                     • Warwick 7
• Southampton 7               • Leeds 6
• Cambridge 6                 • Manchester 5
• York 6                      • Nottingham 5
• Imperial College London 5
     Summary of recent
   Hamptonian destinations

• In 2009/2010, 43% Hampton boys went to
  Top 10 universities. Six years ago, we
  achieved 1/3.

• In 2009/2010, 88% Hampton applicants
  went to Top 25 universities. Six years ago,
  we achieved 2/3.

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