UCAS applications

(469 Posts)
mumblechum1 Fri 12-Oct-12 09:24:31

When are people's DCs planning on finalising their personal statements, with a view to getting the UCAS applns sent off?

DS's school have done the grade predictions but as far as I know haven't done the reference bit yet.

DS has done the first draft of his PS, has feedback from his tutor and is aiming to polish it up this weekend.

<<prays everyone isn't going to post that their DCs applicacations were submitted to UCAS last month and have already got their offers>> wink

JustGettingByMum Fri 12-Oct-12 11:58:20

Hi DS is working on his as I type (I hope).

School have been really pushing the PS since May in Y12, and first draft had to be in before the summer hols - bit daft considering many of the students had summer placements so wanted to write about them in the PS.

Luckily, the teachers have been really good about looking over "late" PS and DS has an agreed final draft which he is trying to upload today. But UCAS seems to be on a go slow. I guess its the last day for the Oxbridge entrants so its prob very busy.

Now he just needs to decide on his final 5 choices wink

socharlotte Fri 12-Oct-12 13:20:07

Our school have only done the oxbridge/med applications so far.

Copthallresident Fri 12-Oct-12 14:00:05

Final date for submission of forms is mid January. Some unis delay offers until February to ensure they give fair consideration to the applications that come later in the process. However most schools get the Oxbridge applications out of the way then focus on the rest. Unis will start offering now because they want to woo the Oxbridge applicants but they will keep offering, they plan it so they don't run out and miss out on good applicants applying later!!

Milliways Fri 12-Oct-12 16:02:19

The Oxbridge & meds have gone already. DS has had his personal statement agreed (finally - many drafs later) and the school are now ready to add their references as DS wants his submitted this month.

His school try & get loads done by half term and all boys are being pushed to complete them now. They are much better at this than DDs school were.

senua Fri 12-Oct-12 21:03:59

One of DS's mates has just finalised his position. He's done a cost/benefit analysis and decided against.

mumblechum1 Sat 13-Oct-12 01:17:27

Senua, so do you mean he's decided not to bother going to Uni as he doesnt think the salary difference will be worth the cost of going?

JustGettingByMum Sat 13-Oct-12 08:03:27

Mumblechum - what's your DS hoping to study?

JustGettingByMum Sat 13-Oct-12 08:04:02

Milliways - whats your DS hoping to study?

creamteas Sat 13-Oct-12 10:42:38

At my uni applications tend to arrive in waves. The first batch is just before the Oct deadline where students are applying to Oxbridge/medicine etc.

The second big arrival time is first half of Nov after half-term. I always imagined that the applicants had a half-term deadline for their applications and then the references are done during and after half-term.

The third wave is just before the cut-off in Jan. This tends to be more sixth form and FE colleges than schools.

We start making offers in November but do so on the basis of fairly predicable trends in the numbers arriving.

mumeeee Sat 13-Oct-12 11:22:36

DD3 is thinking of going to Uni next year. Her college has only just started talking about the Uni applications.

JellicleCat Sat 13-Oct-12 15:30:10

Trying to get DD to do hers by the end of the October break, rather than leave it to December which will be her inclination. Trying to get through to her that early in means early offer, but procrastination is her middle name.
She wants to do Physics btw.
School has a cut off of early Dec for the non-oxbride/med/vet etc which is good as she can't leave it till mid-Jan that way.

fussychica Sat 13-Oct-12 16:09:24

When DS applied he began contacting Unis in September as he needed to know what offer they might make against his Spanish qualifications, most were really helpful but a couple of them were useless. He went to Open days in October and sent his application in first week of November and had all five offers by the end of the month shock Remember it was really exciting for him getting an offer every few days.

mumblechum1 Sat 13-Oct-12 16:19:21

Well, ds said last night that today, he was going to write an essay (due in Monday) and finish his personal statement.

Was out on the lash last night, went out this morning for a loaf of bread at 11am, got back 4pm, has now got his coffee and sat down at his desk at 4.15pm to start his working day.

<<bangs head, bites tongue>>

ISingSoprano Sat 13-Oct-12 16:24:58

Ds is on about draft version 4 of his PS - it is a looooooong and painful process! His sixth form have an internal deadline for mid November for all applications to be complete. We have one more open day to go to at the end of the month so I guess he will complete his application once we have done that.

I am hating this UCAS stuff!

DS1 who has always been a placid, laid back sort has turned into an arse of late. Whatever I suggest is met with 'meh' and a just audible sigh before he tells me it's all fine and in hand.

He has to send off by mid November, that is if I haven't finished him off by then. wink

mumblechum1 Sat 13-Oct-12 17:42:41

Sugarice, same here, ds reckons he really wants to get into a decent Uni but doesn't seem to equate working hard with achieving that.

The essay he's been putting off for two weeks was just rattled off in 45 minutes and he's now watching the Big Bang Theory. Ipromised yesterday I wasnt going to mention the PS today but I'm biting a hole in my tongue.

He's away all next weekend with Army training then off to Washington for 10 days before the elections so this is his last free time till early November.

Gone off.... confirmations of application returned... although offers won't be made till Jan.

Been chewing my nails too over Dd1's horizontally laid back approach -the predicted A's at AS were a little less (high B's +a C ) so having to do resits has sharpened up her attitude a tad. Whether its too late only time will tell.

mumblechum dh has told me to back off and let him sink or swim but where does that leave him if he sinks? He is predicted C's, that's not good enough but I'm sure he could reach two B's if he'd get his head down.

< pours a glass of wine before ds gets in from work and will avoid nagging him hmm>

mumblechum1 Sat 13-Oct-12 17:59:42

smile Sugar.

mumble meant to say in my last post I bet your boy will have a fantastic time in Washington, what an atmosphere that'll be. Lucky Spud!! smile

DS2 submitted his UCAS application yesterday. He said he was fed up of tweaking his personal statement every time he looked at it.

ISingSoprano Sat 13-Oct-12 18:13:54

So what is everyone applying for? Ds is applying for Marine Bio/Oceanography.

JustGettingByMum Sat 13-Oct-12 18:15:36

Can I ask whether your DC have put (or are intending to put) their AS grades in? DS did well in his AS exams, so I think he should put in the overall grades, but not the module scores. But I've heard that some schools recommend not putting in your grades.
Any thoughts?

Yes, DS2 has put his AS grades in.

DS1 (already at University) did the same. I thought they had to!

FrankensteinWippery Sat 13-Oct-12 18:25:17

DD2 did hers a couple of weeks ago. She has said since she was bloody 7 what she wants to do and it would appear that she's going to do it! She's 18 today and her mind has never changed since the day she announced she wants to be a lawyer. She'll bloody do it too. Hoping for Oxford, back up choices are LSE, Bristol (where DD1 has just started) and Exeter.

FrankensteinWippery Sat 13-Oct-12 18:25:47

And, yes, she did put her grades in.

DS2 hopes to get into Film Production.

He is a budding Steven Spielberg grin

ISingSoprano Sat 13-Oct-12 19:09:55

Ds just told me they have the choice of putting either AS module scores or overall grades. Disclaimer - the information source may not be entirely reliable.... grin

Chopchopbusybusy Sat 13-Oct-12 19:29:40

DDs college recommends that they submit their forms this Friday. DD was dreading doing her personal statement but it is now complete. She is still considering her five choices.
I'll be pleased once it's done then she can forget about it for the moment.

senua Sat 13-Oct-12 20:00:08

so do you mean he's decided not to bother going to Uni as he doesnt think the salary difference will be worth the cost of going?

Pretty much. He was going to do a second-tier subject at a second-tier University, with no idea of what he would do for a living after that.
He is now going to do a Gap Year, to give himself time to think. I've told him that there is no hurry - he can go/not-go for several years yet. It will be better to get some RL experience under his belt to find what floats his boat.

I was discussing it with DS today and he sort-of agrees but he realises that it's very difficult to go back to studying once you've tasted paid employment.

mumblechum1 Sun 14-Oct-12 09:06:56

A lot of DS's friends are taking Gap years, even though they're at GS so are aiming pretty high in terms of RG Unis and high-ranking courses. Not really sure why.

DS messed up his ASs so will be looking at 2nd tier Unis, plus one RG, but he doesn't want to do a Gap Year, he knows he wants to go in the Army as an officer after Uni so just wants to get on with it.

3boys1cat Sun 14-Oct-12 12:19:18

DS1's UCAS form was completed by him on Friday. Not sure if the school have done their bit yet, but he's put Cambridge as one of his choices so they know it has to be done by tomorrow. Just have to sit back and wait for the offers to roll in.....

Can't believe they haven't come up with a way to modernise the system so that you can apply once you have your results rather than spend Year 13 biting your fingernails and making decisions based on what MIGHT happen rather than what actually HAS happened. UCAS applications might be online now, but they aren't making use of the power of the internet to speed up the process at all IYKWIM.

Ponders Sun 14-Oct-12 12:41:25

It used to be done like that in the bad old days, didn't it? Or just sometimes, maybe...I was at grammar school in the 1960s & there was a 3rd year of 6th form when they did Oxford entry exams & university interviews, after A levels.

OneHandFlapping Sun 14-Oct-12 12:55:08

Ponders, it was only Oxbrodge that did the 7th term in the 6th form when I was that age (ie mid seventies), in order to study for the entrance exam. Even then, there was beginning to be a move to do the entrance exam in the 4th term, especially for sciences for some reason.

OneHandFlapping Sun 14-Oct-12 12:55:52

Oxbrodge!!! <rolls eyes at self>

Ponders Sun 14-Oct-12 13:25:49

grin at Oxbrodge

I was reading Gyles Brandreth's diaries recently - he went to Bedales, did Oxford exams & interview & had an interview at Reading in Nov/Dec of his 7th term (1966). He thought he'd done disastrously at the Oxford exams & interview & would have to go to Reading. What luck that he was wrong, eh? wink

It's a marvellous book btw - Something Sensational to read in the train - masses of intriguing revelations about household names, he knows everybody & got some of them exactly right on first meeting (Not J Savile though - "He's weird, but I think he means well" hmm)

noddyholder Sun 14-Oct-12 13:29:35

My ds has only chosen one which we will visit next month. Not many of his friends are going a lot have opted to have a gap year and try and find work/apprenticeships.About 4 yrs ago they all planned to go! Ds is already quite proficient at film has had a few films in shows etc and his teachers think the first year of a degree will bore him so we are prepared for him to leave.

noddyholder Sun 14-Oct-12 13:30:59

The personal statement will cause huge rows here as ds is the king of putting off

jessabell Sun 14-Oct-12 13:50:12

Daughter sent hers off last week. Her personal statement was done over the summer holidays. College read it a said it was fine. some of her friends were stuggling what to say. Now got a uni asking for art portfolio with a deadline in a fortnights time. She still going to open days for some of her choices. Was able to narrow them down to 5 in the end.

JustGettingByMum Sun 14-Oct-12 15:44:24

Form finally completed, and unis chosen. Exciting times!

DS has put in his AS grades (thanks for the reassurance)

mumblechum1 Sun 14-Oct-12 19:49:40

justgettingby did you actually see the physical form? I thought the students filled it all online and the teachers attached the reference? Also did you see your ds's reference before it went off?

mumblechum1 Sun 14-Oct-12 19:50:22

noddy I feel your pain. DS has just finally re-drafted his and sent it to his tutor.

JustGettingByMum Sun 14-Oct-12 20:14:41

DS accessed it from home to show me. Once we hit the send button, it goes to the school to attach their ref. school have said they will show the ref to students, DS will ask tomorrow

He is not sending it off for a couple of days, partly, in case he changes his mind again and partly because he wants it to be recorded as being sent after the Oxbridge deadline

Milliways Sun 14-Oct-12 20:54:38

DS gets to review his references this week and to check the factual information is correct. He is hoping to do Philosophy with Maths.

Milliways Wed 17-Oct-12 22:32:09

Well, everything is now marked as complete and I have just paid the £23 for him.

eatyourveg Sat 20-Oct-12 19:37:35

mumblechum we printed off ds1's application - one of the tabs shows you your application in full (minus the reference but school gave everyone a copy of what they had sent) From memory I think its under track which you won't be able to access until the application has gone in.

Milliways Thu 25-Oct-12 19:30:25

DS has been invited for an interview (Manchester), and begun to receive acknowledgements from the others. Some of his friends have had some offers already!

cinnamonnut Thu 25-Oct-12 22:22:52

I got an offer today wine

Pleaseandthankyou Thu 25-Oct-12 23:13:11


ISingSoprano Fri 26-Oct-12 09:18:32

We have one more open day to go to this weekend and then ds's application goes off. Congratulations on the offers coming through - exciting!

JustGettingByMum Fri 26-Oct-12 09:32:29

Congratz to those with offers!

DS has had acknowledgements from most, so we're playing the waiting game............
<<drums fingers nervously>>

mumeeee Sat 27-Oct-12 20:39:38

Well DD3 is slightly behind with her application. Went into hospital with appendicitis last Friday and had her appendix our on Saturday so of course has been off college all week.

Milliways Sat 27-Oct-12 21:33:08

Ooh, poor DD Mumeeee! Does she has half term this week to recover? DS's school are doing a push after half term to get everyone's done by the end Nov if possible, which still gives lots of leeway.

mumeeee Sat 27-Oct-12 22:03:56

Yes she does have half term. I think they were starting thier uni applications last week but her College tutor has said she could register at home which she did manage to do yesterday but didn't get very far as the buzzword he gave us to put in didn't kept producing the wrong college.

mumeeee Sat 27-Oct-12 22:07:21

I meant she has half term next week she has been off all this week and also had a couple of days off the week before. She's very up and down at the moment although she did manage to do a bit of college work today. She gets her assignments put on Moodle on the computer which is good.

outtolunchagain Sat 27-Oct-12 22:55:36

Ds1s application last year didn't go in until mid November last year and he still got five offers , four before Xmas so I wouldn't get too anxious

pipsqueak Mon 29-Oct-12 01:39:53

anyone know when dd likley to hear anything about interviews for medicine ?

peteneras Tue 30-Oct-12 11:12:08

Which medical school(s) are you referring to?

Yellowtip Tue 30-Oct-12 12:58:54

pipsqueak DS had a Birmingham interview in the third week of Oct last year but his Imperial one wasn't until Feb (and not called until a couple of weeks prior). There's quite a range!

Tressy Tue 30-Oct-12 13:07:48

Depends on the med schools. DD had an interview middle of December last year, with a weeks notice, in the first batch. But they interview through to end March.

pipsqueak Thu 01-Nov-12 22:57:18

thanks both - she has now got an invite for interview at Lpool next week but no decision til March ! stressful ... pass the gin!

Tressy Thu 01-Nov-12 23:21:56

Pipsqueak, the interview is the first hurdle, then the offers, then getting the grades. Congrats to your DD. It's a stressful time for us parents. I think I took the stress for mine last year.

Copthallresident Fri 02-Nov-12 01:46:09

In my DDs year Med applicants has the worst time, all their friends were getting offers and were mostly sorted by Christmas (apart from Durham who seem to keep some waiting). However interviews and offers for Med Schools trickle in and some had nothing almost until the start of A2s. I am sorry I can't remember exact dates but just that some found it distracting when they had exams to focus on. It wasn't the sign of disaster they thought, all ended up with offers, at UCL, Kings, St Georges.

NewFerry Fri 02-Nov-12 09:49:28

DS has just received rather an odd email from one of his choices, it's basically saying this is a great place to study, & these are the reasons our students say they love being here.
All well and good, but he hasn't had an offer from them, or an invitation to visit or anything confused
Anyone else had anything similar?

fussychica Fri 02-Nov-12 15:59:23

When DS was applying he was bombarded with similar emails from some unis whilst others were totally silent. Seems to depend on the marketing department. Hope your DS gets an offer.

ISingSoprano Sat 03-Nov-12 11:31:57

Ds's application is now done, paid for and sent. Here's hoping the offers are forthcoming!

silver73 Sun 04-Nov-12 04:12:23

My DS's application went off on 15th October for medical school. He got an offer for his 5th choice 3 days later for biology.

It is a nerve racking process. He took months to do his personal statement and prepare for the UKCAT. Then there was the stress waiting to find out if he would get the AAA prediction he needed (thankfully he did). I then phoned all of the universities he had chosen to make sure that he ticked all the boxes. He only got to see the reference from his school after the application was submitted luckily it was a lovely reference.

He is now not thinking about any of it at least for the time being...

WhitesandsofLuskentyre Mon 05-Nov-12 15:29:39

DD1 has just rung me in tears from school because Head of Sixth Form has told her she's not left herself much leeway (as in, has chosen unis that will make high offers, if they offer at all), so he's told her to go away and think about her choices again. I said to her, if she knows which cities she wants to study in (which she does), why the hell is she not backing up an RG/94 Group application in a city with one for a former poly in that same city instead of going for 5 RG unis?! Otherwise, she risks getting no offers, or getting offers she won't be able to make good on, and then clearing (and no guarantee of accommodation).

The only way a gap year is an option is if she leaves home whilst doing it, to try to broaden her horizons.

I was really, really scared she wouldn't listen to reason, and so it has come to pass...

ISingSoprano Mon 05-Nov-12 17:22:18

Will she be prepared to go through clearing if she doesn't get the grades?

Yellowtip Mon 05-Nov-12 17:28:30

Presumably you phoned without saying a name silver? My DC would have killed me, horribly, if I'd phoned on their behalf, especially if I'd said who I was.

Whitesands there's generally a world of difference between good universities and ex-polys in the same City. So for example an Oxford applicant would be very likely to completely undersell himself going for Oxford Brookes. Or a Durham applicant going for the University of Sunderland. The likely outcome would be abject misery. Of course the place matters, but not to that extent. The students of the two places rarely socialise together to any meaningful extent. Almost every Ho6 has a duty to warn students not to take five high risk options. It can be a very sensible thing to do actually, in the current climate - but that's for a parent to advise, not the Ho6! Presumably she's a strong applicant for the subject in question? FWIW none of my four has ever had an 'insurance' option; they each went for five top end unis on the grounds that they only needed one offer and didn't want to waste a chance by shooting too low at a fifth.

Copthallresident Mon 05-Nov-12 17:30:07

WhitesandsofLuskentyre Are you aware of how the Clearing Process panned out this year. Three factors, fewer applicants because of fees hike, the ability of unis to expand their student quotas if students got AAB (ABB this year) and grade deflation meaning many more students missed their offers than usual made it very much less competitive than it has been in previous years. A lot of good courses at RG / 1994 unis on Clearing, though possibly some were fishing for AAB students. There were also lots more unis accepting students who didn't make their offers and some good unis still ending up losing out on their student numbers. Southampton went public they were 600 down but it is generally accepted that the UCLs benefited whilst other good RG /1994 unis struggled. It may be a sound strategy to not compromise on her choices and then have Clearing / a gap year in reserve. The issue with accommodation if you end up at your insurance or going through Clearing is also easing and in fact even in DDs pre fees hike year most of those who went to their insurance ended up in good accommodation. Has she also thought about less popular Science courses at her chosen unis, offers tend to reflect how popular a course is but popularity isn't always a result of a courses rigour, interest, reputation etc. You are quite right not to let her be complacent, but it might be wise to seek the advice of admissions officers at her chosen unis.

eatyourveg Mon 05-Nov-12 17:32:33

I thought as long as you got ABB next year a uni can admit as many as they like so does that not translate as it being easier to get in than in previous years

Yellowtip Mon 05-Nov-12 17:35:49

Some Hso6 can be over cautious Whitesands. You really should look at her options, dig around for their standard offers, look at her predictions - all that sort of stuff. Be realistic about the prospects but then you should probably encourage her to decide. Dropping out having gone to a place you didn't really want to go to in the first place is a real risk.

cinnamonnut Mon 05-Nov-12 19:44:14

Email from Durham the other day saying they won't be making offers for my course until after the January deadline.

creamteas Mon 05-Nov-12 20:54:27

white if your DD does not get the offers she wants she can go through Extra rather than having to wait till clearing. Also many more students are staying at home now so there is no the pressure on halls that there used to be. At my uni, all clearing students got rooms on campus (and we were up rather than down overall on our numbers last year).

eat yes unis can take as many ABB students as they want, but this does not mean that there will be loads of extra places. Many unis struggle to get everyone in the labs/teaching rooms they they have now and there is no extra money for new buildings to accommodate increased numbers of students.

Yellowtip Tue 06-Nov-12 14:42:01

That's a policy change there cinnamonnut. Durham has been making early offers to the 'best' applicants in November in the past few years. Perhaps they don't want to get the Oxbridge interviewees too relaxed before December 5th smile. Still, you've got one offer under your belt which is good. Presumably it's your least favourite though?

Milliways Tue 06-Nov-12 16:29:51

Wow, I hadn't heard that the AAB had dropped to ABB smile

A friend last year had an ABB offer and was accepted automatically with ABC!

DS is applying to 2 Universities with standard A*AA offers (but not Oxbridge or Durham) and 3 with AAB. I was amazed that similarly ranked Uni's offering the same course have such wide offer ranges, but that was the same when DD applied years ago.

Re Durham - they were the last to make offers to any of DDs friends, including the Oxbridge candidates, so by the time she heard from them she already had her Cambridge offer (I believe this was right but memory may be rusty).

Yellowtip Tue 06-Nov-12 16:42:57

Your DD will be a contemporary of one of mine Milliways and Durham has shifted all sorts of things with its admissions in the past four years. Things always varied between departments too. But for Law, which is what cinnamonnut is applying for, the department has handed out November offers for the past few years to a few top candidates but is clearly now going for a gathered field approach.

Milliways Tue 06-Nov-12 17:21:41

I am so glad that DS is not interested in either law or medicine - the added stress on those poor kids is insane now.

A friend of mine was predicted (and got) 3 A*s at A2, following top mark AS and all A* GCSE results. She worked in a GP surgery as a student for 2 years, was in St Johns for many years, and did loads of other stuff as well as being school netball captain etc - and she only managed ONE offer for medicine, and that was after a 2nd interview and is for a deferred place, so is now on a gap year! Every Uni said she had nothing missing from her application, she was just "unlucky". It's silly!

Cahoots Tue 06-Nov-12 17:55:16

I am so glad that DS is not interested in either law or medicine - the added stress on those poor kids is insane now

Bugger the kids, it's the mothers I feel sorry for. wink

Milliways Tue 06-Nov-12 19:34:25

Very true - more excuses to open the wine grin

Yellowtip Tue 06-Nov-12 22:04:10

Well I've got two lawyers and one medic all at Oxford (also a historian) and all I can say is that one needs to keep cool. I don't think mine were aware of any stress over and above their peers who applied for Chemistry say, or Theology, or Psychology, or whatever. The stress is certainly not 'insane' if you're sensible and it's a good plan for mothers/ fathers not to ramp it up.

WhitesandsofLuskentyre Wed 07-Nov-12 10:15:15

Ho6 was honest with me and said DD's ASs will count against her, because he can inflate a prediction to some extent, but he can't lie about what she's already achieved (or not). And he is worried that they just weren't good enough for a uni that offers AAB as standard for that course to make her an offer. Maybe she is only ex-Poly material. (God I could swing for the people that set GCSEs - straight As and A*s left her feeling she was bullet-proof and she just can't cope with not being as good as she had been led to believe.)

She's peed off because she is sure she can produce the goods - but she said that about her ASs and they were shocking.

Ho6 also suggested that she look at an easier course to get into, so that basically she's just getting "a degree". Guess it means she won't need to ever pay her loan back... (sorry, feeling very angry at the moment - the guy down the road did "a degree" and still lives at home at nearly 30, and is not in a graduate job earning enough money to have to pay his loan back).

I just don't know what to advise her, and I'm being foul to everyone, snapping the whole time because this seems like a total and utter balls-up.

NewFerry Wed 07-Nov-12 11:02:31

So sorry sad

Would there be any chance of resitting Y12 so that your DD can retake her AS exams?

Yellowtip Wed 07-Nov-12 11:29:03

Whitesands would you be prepared to say what her GCSE grades and her AS grades actually were? Also what course she hopes to do? You say the Ho6 was honest - but perhaps a bit too downbeat too? Someone who gets all A*/A at GCSE is capable of reading for a decent, rigorous degree. Did she do all her exams in one go, or piecemeal? And what sort of school is she at? That's all relevant. Don't get downhearted too soon - you've got until January to have a really good think. She won't get into a good place if she doesn't apply to one, that's for sure. Different universities look at different things with some focussing more on GCSEs and less on AS. I'd take a deep breath and start again.

WhitesandsofLuskentyre Wed 07-Nov-12 13:58:55

Giving too much information might out me, but her AS grades were ACDD and she wants to read a popular subject (which she got the A in).

She is the kind of child who will have a meltdown if clearing is mentioned. God, she went ballistic at the mention of "former poly"! She simply cannot process plan B. If I start a sentence "What will happen if..." she turns into Linda Blair from the Exorcist (although without the puke).

Also, she's been told that the January deadline is too far away and that a lot of unis WILL have made their offers before then. So her rethink needs to happen pretty damn quick - she's been given a fortnight by school.

I feel like I'm on the edge of a nervous breakdown.

Millais Wed 07-Nov-12 14:07:34

Mumblechum is your ds going for army sponsorship? Ds1 is hoping for RAF.

sieglinde Wed 07-Nov-12 14:08:02

Did any dcs do the Oxford PAT today? That's the Physics pre-test. Am not allowed to say owt as they are yet to do it in the US, apparently.

eatyourveg Wed 07-Nov-12 14:53:11

white if she puts her head down ABB doesn't seem out of reach to me but if it was my dc I would want them to consider looking at somewhere with a BBC offer for 5th choice. They are out there you just have to dig around and perhaps consider the popular subject area she wants but a course with a tweek to it which wouldn't attract so many applicants and tends to make slightly lower offers. Eg Comparative Literature rather than straight English Lit. You don't mention which subject it is that your dd is looking at so it may not be possible in which case take no notice of me

WhitesandsofLuskentyre Wed 07-Nov-12 15:27:47

eatyourveg In the past hour I've had a read round the rest of the Education posts, and there seems to be a bit of a consensus on putting down three aspirational and two insurance places. I think what she is going to have to do in any case, as you suggest, is tweak her degree choice (Ho6 says her PS would only need tiny changes in that case).

Unfortunately, when the Ho6 mentioned a few places offering lower entry grades for her first choice of subject, my heart sank - they're not places that are even on DD's radar for wanting to spend three years of her life, and I know she won't be moved on that (believe me, I've tried).

ancientandmodern Wed 07-Nov-12 15:38:54

Whitesand -- I feel your pain, as had similar issue with DD2 earlier this term, whose AS grades in the subject she plans to study, plus one other, were not the best. Having spoken in desperation to a friend who's been an admissions tutor, I gleaned the following: unis are more interested in a candidate's GCSE profile and their predicted grades at A2 than they are in AS results, as most people realise something can go wrong at that transitional point and there is time (just) to improve.

DD2's school had been telling her that there was no point in putting down the RG uni she wanted as offer will be AAA and school maintained they would automatically exclude offering to anyone with less than an A at AS. School wanted her to put down only those unis which offered AAB or preferably ABB for her subject (History), which were basically ones she didn't want to go to, plus the point you make about just getting a degree, regardless.

In the end, DD2 put down a mix of top level options plus courses at less well-regarded unis where the course itself had something of interest (eg year abroad/particular aspect of History/special study centre etc). She also made sure her personal statement had lots about what she's read and where she's been to look at historical sites. Upshot is an offer from the uni she wanted, albeit at AAA, BUT (and this may be a big point for your DD, too) she is now hugely motivated to get the work done and get the grades.

So, my advice would be: tell your DD that her stellar GCSE grades will, actually, help her get a place, but she's got to think strategically. Of the 5 places, fine to have 1 or 2 as top level RG, but she needs to plan carefully for the others -- they either need to be combinations of her chosen subject with something else at RG uni (eg History and Philosophy degree offers are usually lower than straight History); or she needs to comb through the course descriptions at the various non-RG unis and find a course that really appeals or where the uni is outstanding, even if the rest of its options are more mixed. (Eg University of kent History course gets v good ratings in most of the league tables, and has special interest in war studies/propaganda, which could be appealing)

Where I do agree with her school is in getting her application in soon -- apart from anything else, as the offers start to happen (or not....) you get an idea of where things might be heading.

eatyourveg Wed 07-Nov-12 15:40:44

2 aspirational 2 on target and 1 as a safety net seems to be the usual I thought

ISingSoprano Wed 07-Nov-12 16:46:59

Ds has one aspirational, three on target and one insurance.

WhitesandsofLuskentyre Wed 07-Nov-12 17:03:02

Oh FFS! DD has just got in from school and had a paddy because she still can't see beyond her RG choices (and sadly, tweaking the degrees isn't helping at her first two choices because the "typical offers" are just as high).

Unhelpfully, she's been talking to friends in the year above her, who are at uni in a certain city and are rubbishing the former poly (in an age-old rivalry) that would actually be a perfect match for her as her insurance option.

The only progress we have made is that we now have one "on target" uni, but she needs to narrow down the course choice.

Some of the former polys are at "on target" levels too, but she's still resisting.


Tressy Wed 07-Nov-12 18:25:03

White, what are the A2 grade requirements for the courses she wants to apply to. DD got offers for the bottom grade requirements because she was at a school who doesn't traditionally get many pupils into RG type uni's. Her offers for BBB for a couple of very good courses at very good uni's. The ranges were AAB-BBB.

Also those grades aren't too bad and she can easily get them up to ABB. Her school should predict these grades. She will probably get accepted with lower grades than her offer. Many did last year.

Finally did you and her father go to uni? Does she go to a low achieving school and/or come from a deprived area/low earning family. There are lots of widening access programmes out there. Many RG uni's will ask for extra work to be completed. DD got an offer for an AAA-AAB course for BBC.

creamteas Wed 07-Nov-12 21:13:41

At the end of the day, if she wants to just apply to RG unis, then go ahead and do so, and then if she doesn't receive offers think about plan B then.

An alternative would be to just wait a year. If she works hard and gets good grades at A2, then her AS grades will have no relevance.

As an admissions tutor, I would say that students who apply the year after school are in a much stronger position as they are a safer bet to make offers to.

BoakFace Wed 07-Nov-12 22:21:57

Aspirational applications are a good idea this year particularly.

eatyourveg Thu 08-Nov-12 07:03:30

Is she doesn't get any offers she could apply through extra rather than waiting for clearing. There are more vacancies through extra than clearing. Think it opens end of January but not sure could be later

creamteas Thu 08-Nov-12 08:16:27

Extra 'opens' the moment that an applicant that an applicant has no outstanding offers, eg they have been declined by all the unis that they applied to.

sieglinde Thu 08-Nov-12 10:02:07

creamteas, interesting - not sure this is true at Oxford, because we are so hmm about A-levels. I think the OP's dd should apply for where she wants to go IF she can take the possibility of rejection.

Copthallresident Thu 08-Nov-12 15:44:47

At the end of the day whitesands your daughter needs to come to terms with the situation, make her own decisions and take responsibility for her own application (and academic results), not lash out at you or resent the HofS . She would be very lucky if this is the only time she finds things not going her way, as I keep telling DD2 if she tries that on with real people in real life she isn't going to have many friends let alone a partner!!! It does sound as if her uni choice is determined by being at a RG in certain cities (let me guess big cities with good nightlife????) and if that is what she wants perhaps you should let her take her own risks, there are lots if things she can do to improve her application, reading around, getting involved in relevant extra curricular, talking to admissions tutors so she targets her applications /PS better (and maybe even makes an impression). Shouting at you isn't going to make any difference!!! Personally as soon as my DDs start that malarkey I walk away (doesn't stop DD2 trying though!!)

When you say that she was moaning at you that January was too late to put in her application, I would hope she knows that is rubbish, which suggests she possibly taking out her frustrations by winding you up. I do not believe any course at any uni runs out of the ability by by January, certainly at my uni it is part of the strategy for widening access, since late applications tend to come from students who don't have the advantage of being guided by good schools. Durham have had a policy of not making offers to anyone until Feb on some courses for some time for that reason, now obviously stretched to the Law course (glad to hear they now warn students upfront, has caused a lot of angst in the past)

On the other hand even if she makes one of her choices an insurance it is only 1 out of 5 options, it isn't going to weaken the applications to the other four and she still has four shots at what she wants. This year it is highly likely she will have better options at Plan B, HofS can only go on past experience. As creamteas says applying during a gap year has positive advantages.

Some unis, Bath, UCL certainly, have a sift based on points in which her GCSEs would score highly. Something to look into to assess the chances of success for her chosen courses.

Aiyah! not looking to DD2 doing this next year, as far as she is concerned it'll be 5 applications to Leeds, insurance will be studying the sociology of film studies ( not that I don't think Film Studies can be a rigourous and valid academic subject done properly, waves to wonderful Film Studies PhD across corridor, but you know what I mean)

WhitesandsofLuskentyre Thu 08-Nov-12 17:14:37

Thank you copthall, that's great.

Much happier all round today. Just waiting for the final approval of Ho6. 2 X RG, 1 x 1994 Group, 2 X former poly in RG choices of city.

I did read what yellowtip wrote about Oxford/Durham and the former polys in those cities, but DD isn't Oxbridge material (I know what I mean by that - she just hasn't got that elusive something that all the Oxbridge people I've ever known have got), so I don't think she's underselling herself with the applications she'll be putting in. Good grief, one of them even has a 360 point top offer for her chosen course (but it can be as low as 300, and she does have UCAS tariff points in that discipline, which she can use).

Copthallresident Thu 08-Nov-12 17:27:03

Hope it all goes well and that she knows this is just the start. DD1 doing Science at elite uni, now in third year and they have to work really really hard just to keep their head above water, third only to Medicine and Architecture at her uni. It is hard when her flatmates who do arts subjects are partying, swanning off for reading week etc. Still she wants to spend the rest of her life with small cells so......

ISingSoprano Fri 09-Nov-12 12:58:35

Woohoo - Ds has just had his first offer for one of his top choice courses. All he has to do now is get the grades..... wink

Pleaseandthankyou Fri 09-Nov-12 13:54:55

Maybe I should ask this on a different thread. Does anyone have any experience of Imperial College? What is the social life like? How hard or expensive is it to find accommodation after the first year? I have heard some very mixed reports. DS applying for engineering and I wondering if the positives outweigh the negatives.

NewFerry Fri 09-Nov-12 17:05:18

My DS took part in an engineering head start course at Imperial in the summer. He enjoyed it a lot, but ultimately decided against applying, but I think that's because he doesn't want to live in London.

Actually, I'm not really sure if that's helpful!

Copthallresident Fri 09-Nov-12 17:28:57

DDs friends have had no problem finding accommodation in London, there seem to be no shortage of landlords renting to students. Obviously not in Kensington/Knightsbridge but Clapham, Camden, Shoreditch, Holloway, Finchley..... They pay around £600 per month and obviously the further out you go the more you get. Inner places tend to be ex Council flats, on main roads, above shops, the sort of places that are cheap because no one would buy them to live in but students don't mind.

I'm afraid she only knows a rather geeky medic at Imperial but student life in London is fun. Plenty of cheap student nights in clubs etc and all the culture London has to offer. ULU is another layer to the student life.

Yellowtip Fri 09-Nov-12 18:12:33

unitarian is a very helpful MNer with a DD at Imperial. She's been consistently positive about Imperial. DS got an offer last year but in the end wasn't keen on London - he reckoned the social life would be a bit sparse/ fragmented and was dubious about accomodation too. But that was based on assumption rather than proper accounts.

Copthallresident Sat 10-Nov-12 10:32:11

From what I gather London social life is a bit more fragmented than if you were at a campus / city centre uni but then London has more to offer than any other city. DDs friends have had opportunities that they just wouldn't have had elsewhere, being part of London's cultural scene etc. Most of DDs friends from her International School who have come to the UK for uni are in London so there is more of a "multicultural" (to use a dirty word) dimension too.

JellicleCat Sun 11-Nov-12 19:01:25

DD now working on draft 3. Tonight's conversation was around the number of choices of courses. Currently she was only aiming to put 4 down, but think we have persuaded her to go for the 5 anyway as she has nothing to lose.

Just wish she would get on with it and get it sent off!!

However we are hoping she will get her first choice (if she ever finishes the damn thing) as she has now been predicted 3As at Advanced Higher.

Who else's DCs has still to actually sumbit their UCAS application? Please tell me she is not the only one left.

eatyourveg Sun 11-Nov-12 19:36:23

ds despite school advising otherwise, ended up only going for 4 courses at 3 unis the thinking being there were only really 3 places he wanted to go and if my christmas he hadn't had any offers he still had another choice to put down which would probably have been somewhere asking for lower grades. As it was he got all his offers within a week of the form going off.

I don't think it matters only putting 4 as long as they aren't all really popular courses at top RG places where competition is often fiercest - I would only recommend it if your dd stands a very good chance of getting an offer.

JellicleCat Sun 11-Nov-12 22:03:40

According to the university website she has the entry requirements for her first choice course (one of the advantages of the Scottish system is that Highers, unlike AS levels, can get you an unconditional offer). However I am sceptical and also aware that if the course is popular she may not get a place even though she has the entry requirements. Just wish she would get on with it.

Milliways Tue 13-Nov-12 07:17:57

DS now has 2 offers, 1 letter saying they are recommending him for an offer and 1 interview, so 4 out of the 5 responses smile

JellicleCat Tue 13-Nov-12 14:54:51

Well done Milliways' ds, but this just makes me all the more anxious about my dd's situation. However we are now on draft 4 and her guidance teacher is happy with it. I think it could still do with some tweeking, but God only knows if she will listen to me. No idea where she gets her independant, stubborn streak from!!

fussychica Tue 13-Nov-12 15:11:31

Jelliclecat I was really unhappy about something DS said in his PS but a friend who was an ex head of sixth thought it was great so DS didn't listen to me and left it in - he got 5 offers so what did I know! Hope it goes well.

JellicleCat Tue 13-Nov-12 15:23:40

Thanks fussy, I know I am probably overthinking this, sigh, just want her to get into the course she has set her heart on.

happyinherts Tue 13-Nov-12 15:30:40

My son submitted his application. it got returned to his college saying there was a mistake and he had to go to student services to rectify it. He had only applied for one university course and obviously UCAS thought it was a mistake. Spent a fiver on travel to get to student services to sort this out and explain that he only wanted one course and didnt want to apply for anything else.

attitude is, que sera sera, if it happens it happens, if it doesn't it wasnt to be and i shall do something else with my life. he does have options. application is now awaiting a college reference from someone who doesnt know him from Adam. Will probably miss November deadline now. grrrrrrrr

MABS Wed 14-Nov-12 18:51:57

Ps finished, uni applications all done and ucas paid for.
Now the wait...

Milliways Sat 17-Nov-12 21:44:25

DS heard from his final Uni today, so now has 3 offers and 2 Interviews smile

mumblechum1 Sun 18-Nov-12 01:16:06

DS finally filled in the UCAS form online, c&p'd his PS, just waiting for his form tutor to add her reference and then hopefully it'll go off next week sometime.

NewFerry Sun 18-Nov-12 07:42:36

Goodness Miliways, congrats to your DS

My DS has had one offer, & 4 acknowledgements. Would be great to get a second offer before Xmas.

DD 1 has offers from Warwick + Reading + an interview for Cambridge......

Stunned + delighted given her AS results!

Milliways Sun 18-Nov-12 09:41:43

Yes NewFerry - DS is hoping he will have all 5 offers by Christmas as will have finished interviews by then.

BossyBritches - good luck with Cambridge. Seems a long time ago that my DD went through this, and the last 2 years she was helping with the interviews (looking after the interviewees - especially those who were staying overnight).

Thanks Milliways- lovely thing is DD is so delighted to have just got the interview she just thinks anything more will be a bonus, which is a much less stressful attitude than her mother! :D

mumblechum1 Fri 23-Nov-12 16:11:39

DS finally got to see his careers adviser and referee today and I've paid the fee so I think it just to HoY for something or other next week and hopefully then it will go.

It's quite exciting! He's applied to two RG Unis, a 1994 one and 2 ex-polys, having messed up his ASs sad

lazymum99 Fri 23-Nov-12 16:41:15

DS2s UCAS went in on the 6 nov and by yesterday he had 4 out of 5 offers! He wants to do politics and has offers for Sheffield, Manchester, Nottingham and Sussex. He is waiting for Leeds where he applied for the course with the year at Westminster and they interview and the acknowledgment letter said he won't hear Til jan/ feb.
Does anyone remember the mumsnetter from last year whose son was choosing between Leeds and Sheffield for politics?

Tressy Fri 23-Nov-12 17:04:03

Yes, I think I remember. The thread should still be here somewhere, sorry I cannot remember her username.

mumeeee Fri 23-Nov-12 22:03:58

Well DD3 has finally finished her personal statement she has emailed it to DD1 who is a teacher and offered to look at it for her, She's put all her unis in and just about finished doing the rest of her application. She said her tutor would like to have them by the end of next week.

socharlotte Fri 23-Nov-12 23:45:11

Finished PS tonight, after the million squillionth draft. It's been round all his teachers and friends , just got to finalise where he is applying to.
Doing Meng in Mechanical engineering chosen Sheffield, Leeds and Nottingham so far, just need an aspirational and an insurance choice then good to go!!

socharlotte Fri 23-Nov-12 23:53:37

DS and I were wondering whether admissions tutors play PS cliché bingo! 'from an early age' 'I am fascinated by' etc etc

Cahooots Sat 24-Nov-12 00:08:47

My DS very clearly wrote his own PS, he gave it to his form teacher to check over (very quickly and poorly) and then I managed a quick 15min read over just before we clicked the send button. My English is terrible and even I spotted a few typo's confused. Once it was sent I spotted another one and I daren't look anymore in case I find more. His PS was good in that he has lots of experience in what he wants to do and is clearly very motivated etc, etc but I would have worded things a little differently?
Fortunately, it must have been ok as he has got four offers so far, I like to think he would have got credit for his PS being clearly his own work. smile

mumblechum1 Sat 24-Nov-12 06:57:24

grin Cahoots

DS's was also all his own work but he's definitely put one of socharlottes cliche's in (fascinated by).

He didn't show it to anyone other than one teacher and the careers adviser though, don't think it occurred to him to show it to his friends - getting worried now that there hasn't been enough feedback from other pple confused

lazymum99 Sat 24-Nov-12 13:32:07

Ds2refused to show me his PS before it was sent. Said he didn't need my approval! He had various grammar mistakes corrected by his tutor who is an English teacher. He then emailed it to his politics teacher ( he applying for politics) who never replied. He sent it off and then found out the teacher had been off sick for weeks!
I was not happy.but as I posted above he got 4 out of 5 offers in 3 weeks???
He also started it with the old ' I have been interested in blah blah from an early age'

Do they read them???

mumblechum1 Sat 24-Nov-12 13:42:14

grin at do they read them?

I hope so, purely because I'm hoping that DS's PS will make up for his woeful AS results.

mumblechum1 Sat 24-Nov-12 13:43:14

lazy, does your ds have really good AS grades and high predictions?

Millais Sat 24-Nov-12 14:01:10

DS said he was sending it yesterday- haven't seen him yet but as I didn't get asked for a fee I am doubting that he did.hmm Is waiting to hear from RAF re a selction weekend so lots of hanging on for the postman in the next few weeks

minsmum Sat 24-Nov-12 14:06:43

My DD has done her ps chosen the places and is waiting for her tutor to okay everything, that was supposed to be friday so now maybe it will be monday. Just want it done now

lazymum99 Sat 24-Nov-12 14:33:57

mumblechum1 not particularly high grades but predictions match entry requirements. He got AACC at AS and is predicted AAB for A2. He is retaking the dreaded history source paper to improve that C grade. The other stupid thing he's done ( and he wouldn't listen to teacher or me on this) is that he has applied for 5 AAB courses with no insurance. He says he doesn't want to go anywhere else and will reapply/retake if he doesn't get the grades.
His As are not very high and he is not exactly knocking himself out work wise.

mumblechum1 Sat 24-Nov-12 14:36:01

I'm sure he'll be fine, lazy, I keep hearing about offers being made below the standard entry requirements, maybe they're anticipating a lowish number of applications as apparently happened last year.

Hope your ds gets what he wants smile

lazymum99 Sat 24-Nov-12 14:36:56

I get the feeling that they never predict lower grades than the AS ones. But it is easy to slip a grade if you don't put the work in. He does do all the work set as far as I know but absolutely nothing extra.

RedGreenRouge Sat 24-Nov-12 14:57:17

After two weeks of wrangling with the school to get a predicted grade changed, dsd has finally sent her application to the school. 4 RGs and 1 with a low offer (that she really doesn't want to go to).

She's really nervous about getting offers now because three of the RGs have a higher offer than her ASs, although they match her new predicated grades. We haven't heard anything other than UCAS since she sent it.

MABS Sat 24-Nov-12 19:19:27

Well done for all the offers, silence here sad

mumblechum1 Sat 24-Nov-12 20:46:00

mabs when did yr dc sent their appln off?

Cahooots Sat 24-Nov-12 21:44:41

You just have to keep reminding yourself that it is up to them to take responsibility for their applications. If they don't want to make the most of the help on offer then it is up to them. even if they are being daft confused

NewFerry Sun 25-Nov-12 08:57:53

I have to keep reminding myself DS that different departments even within the same uni have different approaches to when they make offers. For 2 courses DS has applied for, the uni have sent back an email indicating he is unlikely to hear anything until after the Jan deadline.
....but it's difficult when his friends are getting offers, and he's still waiting.

Milliways Sun 25-Nov-12 09:25:15

One Uni doesn't read them as DSs friend applied for economics. He has NOT taken economics Alevel and his PS says this clearly. His first offer was AAB including an A in economics!!!!!

MABS Sun 25-Nov-12 09:32:55

sent off 7 Nov Mumblechum.

creamteas Sun 25-Nov-12 10:04:38

I am an admissions tutor for social sciences. In my dept, all the PS on applications are read, but not necessarily in the way that some people imagine!

The applications are read by the admissions admin team, and they do the first sorting. They are looking for:

1) A mention of a disability where they have not declared a disability on that space on the form - so we can ensure reasonable adjustments are made.

2) Any comments on previous exam results, especially if they are explaining lower grades than expected.

3) Non-standard applications -this could be anything from overseas to an application that does not seem to lead on from their qualifications or experience (eg someone doing science A levels applying for social science degree).

If they are standard applications then the admin team offer or reject depending on grades/predictions and our numbers.

If it is a non-standard application or there are comments about previous results or anything else which the admin team are not happy about, they send the application to me to consider.

So although I am responsible for admissions, I only see about 10-15% of applications. So unless you are in this small section, all of the carefully crafted sentences about being 'fascinated' are pretty much ignored!

Oh and don't fret too much about typos in the PS, they are usually much better than the school references !!!! But that is another story........

MABS Sun 25-Nov-12 11:48:13

thanks Creamteas, very interesting smile

greyvix Sun 25-Nov-12 11:56:49

Sorry to hijack. Which uni wanted an A in economics? DS has applied to Bath, where entry requirements are ambiguous, and he isn't taking economics.

Milliways Sun 25-Nov-12 14:06:22

It was Kent Greyvix (the Insurance choice as other options were LSE, Warwick, Durham etc)

greyvix Sun 25-Nov-12 14:26:47

Thank you. It doesn't inspire confidence!

DD1 & I had a falling out tonight sad

She has a mock interview tomorrow with her Classics teacher prior to her Cambridge one on 4th Dec.

I asked her what prep she had done & apart from reading up on some of the texts she mentioned in her PS not a lot. She doesn't see the point in keeping up with news or current affairs although I have been told by more than one person its good to do that as they can pounce with off topic questions.

TBH her whole attitude seems to be weary nonchalance which is driving me nuts. When we were doing the Uni visits I was encouraged how interested and inspired she was by the courses/life offered. When we got to Cambridge, she positively glowed with excitement and yearning to be there & I vowed to support her anyway I could if that was her dream- her teachers agree. If she's done her best and doesn't get a offer I shall be proud of her anyway for getting this far. If she fails having been given this opportunity due to lack of preparation or laziness then I despair.

I can but standback & let her do it the way she feels best but ooooh I coould shake her at times!! grin

webwiz Mon 26-Nov-12 08:29:48

Watch out for teenage logic Bossybritches22! "If I try my best and fail I'll feel that I am rubbish but if I don't try my best I can always think that I could have got in and it was my choice not to"

DD2 went a bit baffling over Oxford and changed her mind about applying literally a day before the deadline. I think she just couldn't cope with the idea of trying and not getting in and so ditched it for self protection.

Yellowtip Mon 26-Nov-12 13:19:21

Bossy I'd have thought it was far, far more to the point for a Classics interview to make sure she knows exactly what she's talking about with anything mentioned in her ps. If she doesn't tend to keep up with current affairs I doubt that reading a paper between now and the 4th will help much tbh. Whereas mentioning books that you've read and then seem flaky on can be the thing which kills an interview stone dead. She sounds on the right track to me. She should be herself, not feign an interest in current affairs where it doesn't exist.

JellicleCat Mon 26-Nov-12 23:15:19

Jelliclekitten has finally finished her application and I paid the fee tonight. The reference is all done so hopefully it should go off this week. Phew. Seems to have taken forever to get this far.

I will only relax if when she gets some offers. Fingers and toes crossed.

mumblechum1 Tue 27-Nov-12 10:54:11

Allelujah it's gone and UCAS and one of the choices has acknowledged receipt.

btw is it normal for the HoY, before sending the UCAS appln to ask the student how much their parents earn? I would have thought that was for student finance to ask.

minsmum Tue 27-Nov-12 11:00:54

Still waiting for dd to send hers. Feeling really stressed again

Yellowtip Tue 27-Nov-12 11:06:04

Possibly it was to do with advice re. fee waivers mumblechum?

mumblechum1 Tue 27-Nov-12 11:47:14

Oh, right, thought it might just be her being nosy! Sadly he'll only qualify for the bare minimum loan of £3.5k or whatever it is.

Milliways Tue 27-Nov-12 19:50:50

Has anyone had any interviews yet? DS has one on Thursday.

JellicleCat Tue 27-Nov-12 23:15:37

Ok, form finally sent off today and has been acknowleged apparently.

I have realised that it is because I am not in control that this making me so stressed. However I would have killed my Mum if she had interfered, so am trying (and managing, more or less) to leave her to it.

Good luck to Milliways junior for Thursday, hope it goes well.

MABS Wed 28-Nov-12 12:13:00

conditional offer from her first choice smile Manchester !

mumblechum1 Wed 28-Nov-12 12:41:27

Mabs Well done to your dd! Judging from your earlier post, it took Manchester 3 weeks then?

Manchester is also DS's first choice. Fingers crossed for him and everyone else who is currently keeping half an eye on Track.

lazymum99 Wed 28-Nov-12 12:45:57

mumblechum in answer to your question re. how much parents earn, some universities have special access arrangement based on certain conditions. DS2 was telling me that Leeds may lower the grades offered if the candidate meets certain conditions. Not sure what they all are but need at least 2 out of : earnings below a certain level, living in a deprived area, neither parent been to university and any general family problems which may affect our grades. The teacher may have been asking to see if she qualified for oneof these schemes. But on the other hand she could just be nosey smile

mumblechum1 Wed 28-Nov-12 13:43:56

I think she was being nosy, because they have to put their highest earning parent's job title. DH is vice president of a giant pharmaceutical co and obv. has degrees.

lazymum99 Wed 28-Nov-12 13:47:57

BTW can opt out of answering those questions on UCAS if you want. I don't like having info about us being stored anywhere!

MABS Wed 28-Nov-12 15:29:14

yep 3 weeks for Manchester yesterday, and insurance offer from manchester met a few mins ago smile

Milliways Wed 28-Nov-12 18:36:09

It is Manchester that is interviewing Milliboy tomorrow!

MABS Wed 28-Nov-12 20:47:20

Good luck! What subject?

mumblechum1 Thu 29-Nov-12 12:12:14

Yay, DS only sent his appln 2 days ago and already has an offer, albeit just his insurance one. smile

MABS Fri 30-Nov-12 16:32:09

how was the interview Milliways?

Milliways Fri 30-Nov-12 19:31:09

He wasn't very happy. He could hear lots of other students talk about their "chat about A levels" etc, and even overheard some interviews nearby which were chatty. He was given a problem to solve, did it and was then asked "why this" & "why that" and taken to a very high level (Maths). His teacher at school afterwards told him he should not have been expected to know nearly that much - and he was expecting to be "pushed a bit" but not a total grilling with no chatty bits at all.

His view is that the interviewer now just knows that he knows more stuff than DS, which would have been obvious to start with, but knows nothing about him. It was also a stressful journey with M6 shut and promised "lunch" on arrival one triangle of sandwich grin

Anyway, I'm sure he did fine really, and will soon hear what the offer is - if any.

MABS Sat 01-Dec-12 11:13:44

aaaw poor kid, must have been hard sad sure he prob did better than he thinks, do keep us posted.

mumeeee Sun 02-Dec-12 20:43:31

Hooray DD3 has finished her Uni application and submitted it. Just got to wait for her tutor to put his reference in.

NewFerry Tue 04-Dec-12 07:19:57

Some good news for DS, he's applied for 2 courses at the same uni, and had a letter basically saying he was unlikely to hear any more till after the jan deadline. He came home from school yesterday, to find the department are recommending him for an offer, subject to his references and qualifications checking out, and inviting him to an engineering day next month after his Jan exams.

I'm really pleased f
or him, but I'm a bit surprised that they need to do this checking, as he's at an ordinary school, with ordinary GCSEs, AS/a2 etc.

mumblechum1 Tue 04-Dec-12 08:25:30

Well done NewFerryBoy! I haven't heard of Unis doing that either.

DS now has offers for his first choice and insurance, so not really too bothered whether the ones in the middle make offers now smile

Milliways Tue 04-Dec-12 10:08:42

Yay, he got his Manchester offer of AABa or A*BBa (a=AS Further Maths) which is brilliant! Nottingham was a higher offer but her prefers Manchester he thinks. Apparently it has the largest Maths dept in the country.

Now just one final interview next week. smile

mumblechum1 Tue 04-Dec-12 10:55:30

grin Milliways, that's DS's first choice too, and he got his offer yesterday.

(must admit, though, he made his choices based on which TA units are close by and Manchester won because it has a 4 Para basehmm)

MABS Tue 04-Dec-12 12:55:57

dd is Manchester too smile popular choice..

mumblechum1 Tue 04-Dec-12 14:32:34

It'd be funny if they all ended up in the same flat wink

Milliways Tue 04-Dec-12 14:40:20

Could you imagine how embarrassed they would be - "Our Mums, the Mumsnetters"! grin

LittleFrieda Tue 04-Dec-12 14:54:45

Congratulations on all the offers.

Milliways/Mumblechum - are they manchester offers for straight maths?

Jins Tue 04-Dec-12 14:59:12

Just spotted this. We're waiting too. Form finally finished and sent off at the end of last week so not expecting anything much yet.

Hoping against hope that one of his two favourites will come up trumps but in the last week the one he thought he wasn't interested in has suddenly shot up his priority list.

Milliways Tue 04-Dec-12 15:52:51

LittleFrieda - No, Milliboy is taking joint honours with Philosophy.

mumblechum1 Tue 04-Dec-12 16:47:44

Little Frieda, no, Sociology.

mumeeee Tue 04-Dec-12 16:54:12

Congratulations to everyone who have got offres, Just got to wait now for DD3's tutor to put his referance in and send form off. He wanted all applications in by this week so should be sent off soon.

Hand holding needed, DD 1 in interview at Queens Cambridge as we speak gulp

I'm waiting in the pub opposite with a glass of wine to steady my nerves

it being before 6pm that's my excuse

You would be proud of me no helicoptering just lots of confidence boosting hot chocolate + hugs [ grin]

NewFerry Tue 04-Dec-12 17:57:06

Crossing fingers for you bossy britches x

ISingSoprano Tue 04-Dec-12 18:09:11

Oooh - good luck Bossybritches Hope the interview goes well for your dd.

LittleFrieda Tue 04-Dec-12 19:01:45

Bossybritches - waiting in the pub oppposite where?

MABS Tue 04-Dec-12 19:54:23

fingers crossed smile dd is Criminology at Manchester.

mumeeee Tue 04-Dec-12 21:15:41

Bossybritches how did your DD's interview go? College sent DD3's application back to her so that she could corect some grammar and spelling mistakes she's done that now and sent it back. Her tutor has put his referance in and the college will proces it tomorrow and send it off. I'm proud of her as although she is 20 she has some learning difficulties and has worked hard to get this far.

Yellowtip Tue 04-Dec-12 21:58:19

Bossy is she there just for the day or is she overnighting? I bet (hope) she emerged and said they stuck to ancient things and that there was no peep of current affairs.

Sorry phonedied!

Frieda- opposite Queens- the Anchor, although back at the hotel now!

She came bouncing out of the interview (phew) full of it, she felt she did as well as she could have, nothing she couldn't answer or bluff her way out of, the profs interviewing were almost giving her a tutorial obviously gently testing how much she knew (Classics) They complimented her on persuing it given that Latin isn't done much, if at all in state schools. Tomorrow she has a Language test & feedback after lunch.

sorry proud mum here-she is a very shy girl but passionate about her subject so I am delighted she has come this far, it is so far out of her comfort zone!

We should know by January 4th.

minsmum Tue 04-Dec-12 22:08:32

Well the school have finally done the reference & the application sent today. I now will just have to keep smiling and nodding whilst being convinced, in my own mind, that she won't get any offers.
I don't know why I am worrying so much

Yellowtip Tue 04-Dec-12 22:40:59

Oh minsmum why should you be convinced of no offers? Are you just a worrier all the time?

Jins Wed 05-Dec-12 08:58:47

DS1s form was finalised on Friday and first offer yesterday grin

From one of his top two preferences as well.

MABS Wed 05-Dec-12 13:15:11

fab bosssy - well done to her smile I too thought no offers but now dd has all 5 !

WhitesandsofLuskentyre Wed 05-Dec-12 13:58:19

DD has one of her insurance offers, but is very meh about it. "Yeah Mum, but that's not where I want to go." No other offers yet.

JellicleCat Thu 06-Dec-12 19:30:37

No offers here yet. One uni has said they will not send out any offers until after the closing date for applications, but I would have expected something by now.

Someone come and reassure me please. All the applications are to Scottish unis. Is that likely to make any difference? All have acknowledged so at least the applications have got there.

Milliways Thu 06-Dec-12 19:45:20

Have a look at The Student Room forum where each Uni will have a thread re offers,and you can see if everyone else is waiting for the subject you ave applied for.

Jelliclecat DD1 is waiting for St Andrews to get back to her & she has heard they often don't till January.

Mini-MABS great to get 5 offers!

Sorry Yellowtip just seen our post- yes she stayed overnight & yes thankfully stuck to all things ancient not a peep of politics or the royal baby wink I just panicked when someone said they should be up on current affairs gulp

So difficult when you have no clue about Uni protocol or procedure having not been through it personally!

MABS Fri 07-Dec-12 07:36:11

thanks Bossy smile dd said her mate has applied to all Scottish Unis and silence asyet.

(But just to put things in perpective, in the scheme of things it realy doesn't matter. Last week dd's good mate killed himself aged just 18, (straight a student just taking gap year) we were at his funeral yesterdya. I know it sounds odd but i have said to dd, i don't care what you do, just be happy sad We are devastated to lose him, his family are in bits and it's just so heartbreaking. Sorry, that prob made no sense but i think you get where i coming from?

mumblechum1 Fri 07-Dec-12 08:40:41

sad Oh God, how awful Mabs. And you are right, DH always tells ds that letters on a bit of paper can't make you happy or unhappy, other stuff is far more important than grades.

V sorry for your dd and her friend's family.

MABS Fri 07-Dec-12 09:54:14

thanks Mumble, didn't mean to derail the thread, just a bit of perspective

minsmum Fri 07-Dec-12 14:16:43

Yellowtip yes I suppose I am a worrier. However looking at Mabs post I should relax as its unimportant in the great scheme of things.

Mabs very sorry to hear that sad news, a friends DS did the same a few years ago devasting for everyone who knows them and can't even imagine how the family feels

Yellowtip Fri 07-Dec-12 17:29:03

MABS it's very important to keep perspective, always. You're right, it is all that matters, ultimately.

So sorry to hear about the young boy and so very sorry for his family. I'm another one who just can't imagine the grief.

JellicleCat Fri 07-Dec-12 19:16:53

Mabs, you are so right and I am so sorry to hear about this boy. Certainly made me stop and think.

However, I came on the thread to say that dd has her first offer, an unconditional from Strathclyde. Great, although it is her 4th choice.

Reading Mabs post it does seem a lot less important though.

MABS Fri 07-Dec-12 20:08:24

Really did not want to make any of the offers less important I assure you! Please forgive me girls. Bloody well done to them all grin

NewFerry Fri 07-Dec-12 21:43:09

Mabs, sorry to read your earlier post. Jgbmum x

MABS Sat 08-Dec-12 10:26:56

thanks gals

MABS - don't apologise. You have not said anything that takes the shine off any offers that have been received.

Keeping things in perspective IS important during this stressful time and for every happy student there will be a disappointed one.

JellicleCat Sat 08-Dec-12 16:55:37

No need to forgive you Mabs. You did make me thnk about what is really important, which is good. And my dd's offer is still shiny. smile

MABS Sat 08-Dec-12 18:14:38

oh yes it is Jellicle smile shiny bright! - they all are.

MABS -does help keep things in perspective -I'm sorry to hear about that youngster. sad

DD1 is well aware that if she does get into Cambridge she is very lucky , if she doesn't then it is only because there are many others applying for the same place.

They are very lucky to have this shiny bright opportunity, all of our chicks, but being happy with yourself and your lot in life is what we want for them. xx

MABS Sun 09-Dec-12 11:51:14

dd is not shiny bright today!! very bad hangover...

NewFerry Sun 09-Dec-12 12:59:13

DS is less than happy, he's just realised he will need to be up at 6am to get the 7 am train to Cardiff tomorrow for his interview

I've just realised this means I have to be up too, to give him a lift to the station sad

mumblechum1 Sun 09-Dec-12 13:47:53

NewFerry, send him in a cab and get an extra couple of hours sleep!

MABS -I hope you are crashing around clearing out cupboards & hoovering <evil emoticon>

Master NewFerry -welcome to the world of work !

NewFerry Sun 09-Dec-12 17:21:16

@ mumblechum and bossybritches - good idea grin

MABS Mon 10-Dec-12 07:12:02

oh yes, i was very noisy smile

minsmum Tue 11-Dec-12 20:05:52

I was wrong DD has had an offer from Exeter. Whew I can relax as I just didn't want her to get no offers

JellicleCat Tue 11-Dec-12 20:31:37

Shiny, shiny time. DD has second offer.... and its her first choice...........
and it's an unconditional! grin.
Oh the benefits of being in Scotland where offers are based on Highers not 6th year exams. Those of you who have to wait for results in the summer have my sincere sympathy.
I am so proud I could burst. My baby is going to uni!

minsmum Tue 11-Dec-12 20:46:32

That is wonderful news Jelliclecat. Congratulations to your DD. Brilliant news

MABS Wed 12-Dec-12 07:13:22

marvellous news Jellicle! and great re Exteter Minismum - fab uni

NewFerry Wed 12-Dec-12 21:38:13

Adding to the good news, DS has just received offers for 2 courses at Warwick smile

minsmum Wed 12-Dec-12 21:57:59

Thanks Mabs she has just texted me to let me know she has received offers for the 2 courses she liked at UEA.
Well done Newferry to your DS

MABS Thu 13-Dec-12 18:18:42

brilliant to all!

JellicleCat Fri 14-Dec-12 00:22:55

Well done to everyone's DCs for their offers. Hope they keep coming.

NewFerry Fri 14-Dec-12 13:24:56

Hear, hear, let's keep the offers rolling in
And congrats to all those lucky enough to be getting their offers

Jins Fri 14-Dec-12 13:38:09

Another offer arrived today so DS now has conditional offers from his first and second choices and an interview for his third (which is a different subject and a bit of an odd choice looking at his results etc)

He's very happy and doesn't mind what happens to the other two now.

minsmum Fri 14-Dec-12 14:04:27

Well my DD is over the moon just received an offer from Lancaster.

Can I just say that without guidance from lovely mumsnetters who said take her to some good Universities and show her what to aspire to this wouldn't have happened. Because of that advice she has worked so hard and reached above what she thought she could do. Thank you

ShotgunNotDoingThePans Fri 14-Dec-12 14:08:35

Can I join? DS is thrilled at having just received 2 offers, slightly lower than expected, for Maths - eek!

Jins Fri 14-Dec-12 14:08:50

Oooh we're waiting for Lancaster still

Well done to everyone

MABS Sat 15-Dec-12 10:09:33

well done!

fussychica Sat 15-Dec-12 12:38:15

All those with offers well done - you'll have a nice relaxing Xmas. To those still waiting - hang in there, it will be fine.

minsmum Sat 15-Dec-12 17:32:34

My DD has received a letter today from 1 of her choices inviting her to one of the applicants days but also stating that they were impressed with her application and think she would be an asset to the department. They said that if she makes them a firm choice even if she doesn't get the grades to contact them as they have some leeway.
I was rather impressed with this but she says they send this letter to everyone does anyone know if she is right or wrong

creamteas Sat 15-Dec-12 18:04:21

It sounds pretty much like the letter we send to everyone, sorry if that disappoints.

minsmum Sat 15-Dec-12 18:41:13

No She won't be diasppointed at all thanks for that, it was me being dense as usual.

Well done on all the offers ...isn't it fab seeing them so excited!

Now "all" they have to do is get the grades!!! [gulp]

alreadytaken Sun 16-Dec-12 07:12:50

minsmum it may be the standard letter but it's still what they mean. Students don't always realise that there is often some leeway over grades, especially if they are ABB or above.

Congratulations to all those with offers, a big incentive to work for January exams, if they have them, and time to start thinking about what sort of accommodation they want to have and to order good earplugs grin If you ask for single sex you tend to get overseas students - can be quieter. Avoid if you don't want that.

Milliways Mon 17-Dec-12 16:07:52

Yay, after his last interview DS now has his 5th offer - (of AAB or ABB with an A in the EPQ) so it could be a great insurance choice as the EPQ isn't too hard to get the A in.

JellicleCat Mon 17-Dec-12 18:44:26

We are up to four offers too and Edinburgh (number 5) have said that they don't send any offers out until after the closing date but DD decided that she didn't like them anyway when she visited, so no idea why they were even on her list.

minsmum Mon 17-Dec-12 19:04:43

Well done Milliways & Jellicle

Milliways Mon 17-Dec-12 19:43:03

They will have to make the Firm & Insurance decisions and choose accommodation soon!

JellicleCat Mon 17-Dec-12 23:08:23

I thought decisions didn't have to be till 31 March?? Starts panicking again.

NewFerry Tue 18-Dec-12 10:56:59

With DS1 we waited until after the Jan results came out in March, before he finally selected his firm and insurance.

ISingSoprano Tue 18-Dec-12 12:34:29

Decisions about offers have to be done by 8th May 2013 (according to UCAS site)

Milliways Tue 18-Dec-12 17:03:56

Sorry - I just meant once you have all your offers in, the decisions can begin. We are already getting the literature on accommodation choices etc, which is what made me think.

Good idea to wait for Jan results though.

mumeeee Wed 19-Dec-12 22:17:35

DD3's application has finally gone to UCAS so now we start the waiting time.

When do applications for funding go in, anyone know?

That will have an impact on our choice of accomodation-do you have to sort that at the same time you accept the offer?

MABS Thu 27-Dec-12 09:47:12

wondered the same thing re funding?

eatyourveg Thu 27-Dec-12 20:22:26

student finance England doesn't open for 2013 applications until february - Scotland Wales and NI may be different though

You don't have to sort it at the same time as the offer but it is best to get it done earlier rather than later.

ds did it during the easter hols last year and it took 2 months to sort (think it is normally a quicker turn around but we had to send various bits to prove income and then for some reason something didn't tally so we had to resend it all again)

there is an online calculator somewhere (someone will hopefully come along with the link) which gives you an idea of how much you would get which you might find useful when looking at the various accommodation costs

fussychica Fri 28-Dec-12 14:58:35


This is what you want. If you have any unusual circumstances best apply as early as possible. We had to do a paper application and after a couple of month rang to check progress only to be told they said they never received it. It wasn't finally sorted until August instead of June but still in plenty of time before term started.

peteneras Fri 28-Dec-12 18:32:14

(1) ”. . .but we had to send various bits to prove income and then for some reason something didn't tally so we had to resend it all again”

(2) ”We had to do a paper application and after a couple of month rang to check progress only to be told they said they never received it.”

This is what Student Finance England seems to be doing to everybody. They mess you around for months on end giving you the impression that all’s OK after you’ve applied and you hear nothing from them for months. And when you finally ring to enquire, they tell you this bit and that bit is missing and you’ll have to redo everything again. Many times over! They piss you (me) about and when I finally got my MP to deal with them, everything went like a dream.

I say, don’t let them piss you about any further - just go straight to your MP and complain. Like I said above, they seem to be making a habit now delaying everybody’s money which is rightfully due to them. Students at unis are having a hard enough time without SFE messing them about. It's not as if this money is given away free; it's a loan, get it (?) a LOAN which got to be repaid at a future date. What business is it of SFE's sitting on their money? angry

creamteas Fri 28-Dec-12 18:44:14

They are pretty useless, and I say this both from the perspective as a parent and a lecturer!

One of my personal tutees only received their loan in the last week of term despite applying in March! Thankfully as he is in uni halls, he is was not threatened with eviction, and he has had crisis loans from student support to keep him in food!

Yellowtip Sat 29-Dec-12 21:51:11

It's far too unwieldy to bother with MPs. Just another layer of hassle. If you send in a paper application and send it by registered post having photocopied it so you can recite the bits they say are missing, the process also works like a dream.

A hugely incompetent organisation. You just have to outwit them.

peteneras Sun 30-Dec-12 08:52:44

What you described is just the normal basic procedure in the application process that most people would do including myself. What we are talking is we know we have sent in everything they asked for and recorded delivery too. In their laziness and incompetence they say they haven’t received them in spite of the fact a previous enquiry had them confirmed that they had received them. It’s a case of the head doesn’t know where the tail is wagging.

Don’t know about your MP but my MP is only too happy to raise the matter with the Chief Executive of Student Finance. He clearly agrees with me the whole SFE needs a good shaking up.

Yellowtip Sun 30-Dec-12 10:31:21

I am a past master with SFE peterenas. They've done what you describe multiple times in the cases of my four university aged DC. It's an annual and very tedious event. It would be far too time consuming to go to our local MP and rather a waste of his time, so I just sort it myself. It doesn't generally require more than going up the chain of command myself and keeping clear headed. I agree the organisation is incompetent though; I may have said that to them many times smile

Yellowtip Sun 30-Dec-12 10:33:53

Keep a record of all phone calls with the date and time of call and the name of the SFE opeator that you spoke to, having checked that the conversation in question has been noted in full on the application of the student in question.

eatyourveg Sun 30-Dec-12 13:07:21

Where do you get all the forms for a paper application? When I asked last year they said I had to do it online and when I asked what VI students were supposed to do they said that their college would do it for them. I knew it was a load of tosh when she said it but didn't have a clue about the system so just accepted it and took a screen print.

Definitely going to go for paper application this year

Ponders Sun 30-Dec-12 13:15:38

the one time we had issues with a finance application I emailed customer complaints with a detailed list of their incompetences & threatened to complain to my MP.

The threat alone, apparently, was enough to generate a swift response from an individual at Darlington; thereafter all transactions went through her & she was very efficient, to be fair.

It was a nightmare though. And they still managed to fail to return one P60 confused but luckily it hasn't been needed for anything since (& in fact subsequent applications haven't required documentation, thank goodness)

Yellowtip Sun 30-Dec-12 16:03:58

I ask them for paper copies for all four DC and if they don't arrive within ten days I ask them again. You're right eatyourveg, it's tosh (as is so much of what the individual operators say): they're obliged to send paper copies. It would take me hours to print them all out - bad enough filling the wretched forms in - so I let SFE take that particular strain.

CowboyTakeMeAway Sat 05-Jan-13 13:45:16

I hope it's OK to bump this thread; my DS sent off his UCAS application just before Xmas and I'm already slightly worried that he may have been too 'realistic' in his choices.

He's received one offer so far from his first choice, which is great, however this particular university stated in their Entry Requirements they'd make offers between 260-300 UCAS points. So, as my DS has predicted grades of BBC, he thought this would be a good fit for him. However, the offer they have made is for 230 points (which means he will probably get a place there with actual grades of CCD or thereabouts!).

I'm now thinking that he may have underestimated his chances at higher ranking unversities, ie, all his choices are universities of a similar standing - apart from one aspirational choice where they state they will make offers from BBB-ABB, so he might get an offer from them.

I guess my point is; are applications massively down this year? Or has my DS been too cautious?

It's not really a problem because he has his heart set on the 230 point University, but I thought I'd throw it out for discussion/reassurance anyway!

creamteas Sat 05-Jan-13 14:14:41

Cowboy applications are down nationally and many universities (including RG) did not fill their places last year. Also the Government have changed the rules regarding recruitment again (so any student with ABB+ or equivalent is outside of the controlled numbers quota)

This means that overall offers are likely to be lower than in previous years for many subjects/universities and many universities are making offers to everyone who applies with the right predicted grades. (There will be job losses at universities that do not manage to get their places filled this year, so lots of places are getting desperate)

But at this stage don't worry about it too much. If on results day your DS does better than expected and wants to get a place somewhere else, he will probably be able to.

Clearing was manic last year with huge numbers of students rejecting their firm places and going elsewhere. I should imagine it will be the same this year as well.

CowboyTakeMeAway Sat 05-Jan-13 15:15:03

Creamteas, thank you for your reassuring post, even made more so by you being an admissions tutor!

I think what we are beginning to regret slightly, is not looking at so-called better universities than the actual ones my DS did go to visit. For example, he liked the look of Brunel, but they were asking for ABB for his course, so he didn't bother, thinking he had no chance. This was mainly because of his school banging on about 'being realistic' (I guess they couldn't predict the downturn of applications - although there may be a late surge next week?).

But, as you say, there is the possiblity of going through Adjustment, so all is not lost. Also, he may get an offer from his aspirational choice, which will then mean throwing another dilemma into the mix!

Thanks again.

creamteas Sat 05-Jan-13 15:53:41

The really important thing to remember is don't go anywhere you are not certain about. If you can't get the place you want this year, it is better to withdraw an application, and reapply later on.

Apart from anything else, dealing with unhappy students who are doing the wrong course or at the wrong university for them is not an easy thing to sort. It is much better to arrive later but really sure about what you are doing grin

CowboyTakeMeAway Sat 05-Jan-13 18:10:40

I hear what you're saying - thank you! smile

greyvix Sun 06-Jan-13 01:13:40

In my opinion, the colleges are encouraging students to be "realistic" rather than aspirational. MY DS was advised to apply for an insurance uni below AAB, despite his predictions being A*AA. He ignored them, and currently has offers from 3 unis, ranging from AAA to AAB. He still has no offers from the higher unis (usually A*AA) but is pleased with those he has so far.

Clearing will be a good bet for many this year I think. Last year, there were lots of good courses at RG unis at clearing; this year, there are likely to be more, so don't despair!

creamteas Sun 06-Jan-13 09:05:32

Greyvix Schools are right to be cautious and encourage at least one proper insurance offer.

Last years A levels grades were significantly down on previous years. Only about 50% of our firm offers got their predicted grades (usually it is about 75%) and many students predicted AAAs ended up with BBB. This is why so many RG unis went into clearing.

Anyone making ABB (apart from on restricted numbers courses such as medicine) should be ok. But it doesn't hurt to have a fallback position in the bag.

mumblechum1 Sun 06-Jan-13 09:15:47

creamteas (I owe you at least one drink by now for previous help), my ds bombed his ASs, so his predictions are now BBC.

He has an offer from Manchester for BBB (he emailed them to ask whether they would consider him beforehand and they said that as long as his PS and reference were ok, they would).

Also has an offer of BBC for UWE and for Portsmouth,

and of BCC for LJMU.

He has a retake of one of his AS modules in Jan, together with a module of an A2, and I believe will know in March how he's done in those.

So my question is, if the result of those retakes still puts him in the BBC basket, do you think he should firm Manchester (by far his favourite) in the hope that they have to fill their quota so will take him even though he's one grade down, or should he go on the side of safety and firm a BBC with a BCC as insurance?

It seems a bit of a gamble, but if RG unis were accepting people without the grades last year, hopefully it'll be the same this year?

I'd really appreciate your view! Thanks

creamteas Sun 06-Jan-13 09:28:25

Mummble I think it really depends on what results he gets in Jan and how much he wants to go to Manchester.

Assuming his results are ok in Jan, if he really, really wants Manchester, then that should be his firm (and hopefully give him incentive to get the BBB). If he would be equally happy at UWE or Portsmouth then perhaps play it safe.

There are less people applying this year, and many unis want to make up for the places that were unfilled last year, but what and how much is available will be determined by what the A level results look like overall.

mumblechum1 Sun 06-Jan-13 09:31:15

Thank you for your speedy reply creamteas smile

CowboyTakeMeAway Sun 06-Jan-13 13:08:44

Greyvix, thanks for your post. I think if my DS does happen to exceed expectation in his actual A2s, then he is likely to say "I CBA to look at any more Unis" hmm, but let's hope I'm wrong!

Coincidentally, you were saying about your DS waiting on a couple of offers; my DS has two or three friends desperately waiting to hear from Bath, Warwick and similar (Warwick seems to be the popular choice, especially as these friends are applying for Maths-type degrees). Also, DS has another very good friend who got a Cambridge Medicine offer yesterday - we are mega-pleased for him as he is a lovely lad - but I digress.

Mumblechum, interestingly, my DS absolutely loved Portsmouth, and that will almost certainly be his first choice. But, hopefully your DS will get Manchester, so good luck with that smile.

mumblechum1 Sun 06-Jan-13 13:13:13

Cowboy, he hasn't even looked at Portsmouth or LJMU!

He seems to have randomly picked 3 out of his 5 Unis, only looked at two. hmm

creamteas Sun 06-Jan-13 13:38:54

mumble most unis have days for applicants so he should be invited to anywhere that makes him an offer so there is still time....

But a fair few of my students arrive never having been before and one of my DC didn't bother to visit his choices either so you are not alone......

CowboyTakeMeAway Sun 06-Jan-13 13:49:33

Haha Mumblechum, I know what you mean, my DS hasn't looked at his aspirational choice (which I'm loath to name in case they are reading this!).

As Creamteas say, they won't be the only ones.

noddyholder Sun 06-Jan-13 13:50:49

My son has chosen only one! Visiting next week for a tour. He is also making noises about not going aaaaaaaaaaah!

mindgone Sun 06-Jan-13 23:41:01

My DS also has an offer from Manchester, and really loves the look of it too! The results of these Jan exams will give us a better idea of where they're at I guess. A stressful time for us all!
Cowboy, can I just ask, btw, about the friend of your DS who got an offer for medicine from Cambridge? This is my DS2's ultimate dream! What do you think it is about him that made them choose him, where so many don't get chosen, if you see what I mean? Thanks in advance for any help, it's so elusive, it's good to hear of someone who achieved an offer! Very best of luck to him!

Yellowtip Mon 07-Jan-13 09:15:44

mindgone I think the received wisdom amongst those who get in to Cambridge or Oxford to read Medicine is that once someone is at the interview stage with a decent BMAT under his or her belt, a huge amount rests on luck smile. I think being relatively relaxed probably helps as well. And seeing through the interview questions to the end and not giving up.

alreadytaken Mon 07-Jan-13 10:41:20

I have a teen with a medicine offer from Cambridge, mindgone, and I'd second the idea that there is a considerable element of luck. They need really good AS module scores and to practise the BMAT but most (all?) students end up with guesses for some of the BMAT questions. You can try to cut down on the luck by practise and also by choosing a college carefully but you can't cut it out. It may also help if they actually talk through their thinking in the interview. Intelligent people don't usually do that but the interviewer wants to see how they think. One young man was asked who the most important people in a hospital were - he thought patients was an obvious answer and wasn't impressed that they tried to guide him that way. He got an offer though.

I've heard of one young person who sat the BMAT a year before they applied to get some idea of how they would do. If they are planning a gap year that might be a good strategy as familiarity with the nature of the test probably helps. I'm not so sure about doing it just after GSCE, it's supposed to be that level but probably requires more maturity of thought.

mindgone Mon 07-Jan-13 14:55:07

Thanks very much alreadytaken and yellowtip. He's only in year 11 now, so Yellowtip, you're way ahead of me! I was thinking more in terms of what he could do now for his overall profile IYSWIM. Eg I think he could do with starting some voluntary work in a local care home, as much to see whether he actually likes working with vulnerable people as anything else! He is a bright boy who does well at school and is well thought of at school too. Time will tell whether he gets the string of A*s he needs though! Alreadytaken, may I ask what grades your son has so far, what he needs, and his predictions? Thanks so much :-)

CowboyTakeMeAway Mon 07-Jan-13 16:52:24

Hi Mindgone, sorry to not reply sooner... work gets in the way of MNing sometimes!

Although I personally have no idea what is required to get in to Oxbridge, but regarding the boy we know with the Medicine offer from Cambridge; I would describe him as quietly confident (not arrogant at all), possessing of humility and empathy, popular and well-liked/respected amongst his peers. He is also really clever, works very hard at school and achieved high AS grades percentage-wise (he's doing four A2s - Maths and the three sciences). He also did well in the BMAT, getting something like 5.9 and 6.2, I think. He did loads of extra stuff, eg, DofE, voluntary work, work experience at local hospital, etc. According to my DS, this boy "seems to know everything" but I would say that is due to him reading loads and being well up on current affairs, etc. Also, he's quite sporty, which doesn't hurt either I guess. He also finds time to socialise/party!

Regarding the interview bit, I remember him saying he messed up a question, but then corrected himself without panicking. Also, he noted that some interviewees had not really bothered with their appearance.

So I guess this would roughly concur with the sound advice from previous posters. Anyway, good luck to your DS1 and to your DS2 on his Cambridge aspirations smile.

alreadytaken Mon 07-Jan-13 16:57:22

the standard offer is A*AA at A2 but there are variations e.g A*AAA is not uncommon. My child is predicted what they need. If your son doesn't achieve at least 90% in all AS modules he needs to think hard about whether he'd be wasting a choice. If his GSCEs are all A*s but AS not so great Oxford is a better prospect.

Voluntary work and work experience are essential and starting now shows long term commitment. He may find he doesn't enjoy it. For very intelligent young people there are careers that generate more money with less antisocial hours. He is unlikely to be asked to work Christmas Day and New Year's Eve/ New Year's Day elsewhere, for junior doctors that is common. He needs to consider that and also whether he wants constant study and 6 years of debt. He might like to read Atul Gawande's book Complications and think about how he would live with with his inevitable mistakes.

If he would qualify he might want to look at the Cambridge shadowing scheme later in the year www.applytocambridge.com/shadowing/

Yellowtip Mon 07-Jan-13 18:31:25

My own DS sounds rather similar to the boy Cowboy describes. Confident but very definitely not arrogant. He's at Oxford though, not Cambridge. He only did a week at a care home but we both think he winged it there. He attended an access course at the nearest regional hospital and spent some time with our GP doing out of hours work. He found getting work experience pretty difficult. He read masses of medical books though - a great raft of them sat by his bed. That's well worth doing for Oxford or Cambridge, less so for other places though and can cause a conflict in the PS. He got 12 A* at GCSE, a good BMAT and 6 A* at A2. His was the last of the AAA offers! Good luck to your DS. Get back as and when he needs interview help smile

alreadytaken Mon 07-Jan-13 20:32:42

Cambridge have their own additional form that you are required to compete. You have to give AS module marks and you get the opportunity to say other things. Therefore my child did a personal statement aimed at medical schools generally (so why they wanted to study medicine, talking about work experience quite a lot, mentioning some teaching they had done, showing they had some life apart from medicine and ways of dealing with stress) then used the supplementary form to talk more about the academic side including more on books. I think a book or two may have been in the PS but there were more in the supplementary form. They were not asked about anything on the supplementary form, they were asked about voluntary work. One question asked how they found one of their work placements.

The Student room website has an excellent wiki guide to finding work experience. If it's a problem try groups that don't normally get asked - like pathology, radiology, community nurses or perhaps paramedics. Nursing homes and hospices provide good experience but even volunteering to be a trolley dolly can be useful. Check early on what the local hospital offers, if they run anything like an access course it will fill up very rapidly. Getting experience with a gp can be very difficult, however they will sometimes let you help in reception. The best time to ask for is the summer holiday (no medical students around) but ask well in advance and be prepared for lots not to reply.

Yellowtip Mon 07-Jan-13 21:40:10

Oxford doesn't have that extra facility alreadytaken, hence the potential conflict. DS found even the 'don't normally get asked group' pretty hard to extract offers of experience from. The main message here is: don't worry too much; the schools know that it's tough.

mindgone Tue 08-Jan-13 14:27:05

Thank you all so much! thanks This is what I love about Mumsnet! Practical, helpful and relevant advice that I wouldn't find anywhere else! My DS really needs to get cracking now with his search for work experience for the summer, I think. GP experience will be no problem as we have good contacts! I think the hospitals will be more tricky though, but the sooner he starts, the better.
Just need to cope with DS1's exam stress for next week now! wine

MABS Thu 10-Jan-13 21:10:56

Happy new year everyone smile well dd had 5 offers and without doubt Manchester is fave, will see if she gets grades though, t'is a stretch. Northumbria is her insurance I think now.

peteneras Sat 12-Jan-13 05:36:38

”He got 12 A* at GCSE, a good BMAT and 6 A* at A2.”

Well, I’ve heard of grade inflation, price inflation and all kinds of inflation but this is something new: the number of GCSE A* inflation - from 10/11 to now 12! Can you please make up your mind and let us have the correct number for a change? Well frankly, I’m more interested in hard evidence than plucking numbers from thin air.

Jee. . . it seems the UK’s top state school at my backyard, Queen Elizabeth?s School, Barnet (8) that don’t do 6 A2’s, is now been put in the shade by another mega-super state school but has somehow escaped the FT’s school league radar from the top of the tree. shock

So, 6 A* at A2 (assuming it is true) - does it include all the core Maths and Science subjects or are we talking Critical Thinking and the equally challenging General Paper and no Maths?

Or are they accumulated over 3 or 4 years?

Very strange, even the nation’s premier private boarding school has problems time-tabling 4 or 5 core A2 subjects (never mind 6) for their individual pupils over two years of study but now we have a day (state) school doing it like a walk in the park.

Tell us the name of the school as I’m sure MNers and the nation would like to know about this super fantastic school that’s somehow hidden away in your little village undiscovered.

And what kind of medic is one who deliberately dodges the UKCAT exam that is a pre requisite of the bulk of the UK’s medical schools? I would have thought someone with 20 A* would have breezed through such exam blindfolded in 20 minutes!

NewFerry Sat 12-Jan-13 09:02:34

Mabs, congrats to your DD on the offers.

NewFerry Sat 12-Jan-13 09:04:13

Good luck to everyone's DC with Jan exam modules starting this week.

Personally, I am hoping DS hears nothing from the 2 unis he's waiting on now till the exams are over (just in case it's bad news)

MordionAgenos Sat 12-Jan-13 09:26:04

I see its time to start quoting the lyrics to west end girls. Again.

Yellowtip Sat 12-Jan-13 09:35:54

peterenas my DS achieved 12 A* at GCSE and a good BMAT score and 6A* which does include GS but doesn't include CT nor any type of Maths. All the A levels were taken in the conventional two year period, all in one sitting. He scored either 100% or nearly 100% in every exam. I'm very proud of him for all sorts of reasons,only one of which is his academic track record. Not all candidates at any one school sit the same number of ASs or A2s. The fact that he's clever, steady, calm and (critically) not in the least bit arrogant I'm sure helped secure his place at Oxford. His three sisters scored 10, 11 and 11 respectively, not him.

I'm confused about what it is to you however. You're very rude. These numbers have never altered either, so that's a bit confused too.

As for 'dodging' the UKCAT: if you don't wish to apply to a UKCAT uni, why bother sitting the tes?. He (and the friends of his who also chose this route) had better things to do with their summer. Each happened to achieve their Oxbridge offer, so in the event it didn't matter two hoots smile

Yellowtip Sat 12-Jan-13 09:37:54


And yes, it's tedious.

MABS Sun 13-Jan-13 10:39:49

agree Newferry, you dont want bad news at the mo, but sure its just that they looked at his applications yet, apparently some dont look til after ucas deadline. good luck, dd not liking her Jan exams so far..

gelo Mon 14-Jan-13 10:47:00

peterenas, what was that about? Surely you've seen the papers each summer where there are always plenty of dc with strings of A* at GCSE and A level from all sorts of school. DS personally knows two people with 8A* at A level (one from private and one from independent school and OK, one of them is actually 7.5A* since it includes extended project, but still wow! it's a fantastic achievement). Of course it's not the norm for either school, but lots of schools actually do, you know, support their able students. (Oh and for the record, ds tells me both these people are really nice - so it's not a case of study to the exclusion of all else, though I daresay they work hard too)

gelo Mon 14-Jan-13 10:48:00

one from private and one from state school, sorry.

MariscallRoad Mon 14-Jan-13 13:18:39

Hi MABS congratulations to your DS for the offers smile esp from his preferred one, he did brilliant. Good luck with the exams.

MariscallRoad Mon 14-Jan-13 13:20:27

Hi MABS, sorry for the typo, congrats to your DS!

MariscallRoad Mon 14-Jan-13 13:22:43

Hi MABS sorry for the typo best of luck to your DD!

MABS Mon 14-Jan-13 13:40:13

thanks Mariscall - dd borderline hysterical re French tmro sad

NewFerry Tue 15-Jan-13 09:32:18

Well having said I was hoping the Unis would now go quiet till after the students sit their Jan exams, DS got an email from 1 of the 2 he was waiting on. Luckily it's an offer, but honestly, I think a 2 week moratorium till after the exams would be so much better.

Uni lecturers/admissions bods - please take note! wink

MariscallRoad Tue 15-Jan-13 12:26:33

Congratulations for DS offer from No 1 and best wishes for No 2 smile. I agree that decisions could have been delayed a bit ... but it is confidence boosting to have certainty and good news before exams.

NewFerry Tue 15-Jan-13 13:04:15

Thank you Mariscall smile

MABS Tue 15-Jan-13 17:57:44

marvellous Newferry! so pleased for you

NewFerry Tue 15-Jan-13 19:29:17

Thank you - lots of work experience (following on from contacts made here helped) wink

NewFerry Tue 15-Jan-13 19:30:27

MABS - how was your DDs French exam in the end?

MABS Tue 15-Jan-13 20:25:43

good to hear Newferry smile It was an AS retake and better than last year, sounds good i think!! but she got a B then and i truly don't think an A is realistic and nor does she really.

melodyangel Wed 16-Jan-13 17:41:04

Has everyone's DC's had offers yet?

DS1 didn't quite manage to meet his offers last year so is resitting a couple of modules this year. Really worried this is going to count against him.

The support thread last year was a great help in getting though the exam nerves and although we didn't get the results we were hoping for it was really nice to see so many others DC's achieving such great things are being able to go off to uni.

MABS Wed 16-Jan-13 18:12:37

well done to him melodyangel, i think my dd would just give up sadly.

stephrick Wed 16-Jan-13 18:19:29

I thought the last day was yesterday, DD put As grades in she was told she had to. Already been pre accepted 4 out of 5, just waiting for Bristol. DD did it in November.

MariscallRoad Wed 16-Jan-13 18:30:33

melodyangel well done to ds. It is always better and looks great to have improved grades - do not worry about resiting A Levels when it leads to better results. It shows what one can achieve.

stephrick Wed 16-Jan-13 18:56:33

I think it was tough last year. they all left school with goods GCSE's, probally A's and A*, then found A levels so much harder than they expected. DD got an A in math and tried it at A level, she found it very difficult and was disapointed in herself, she had to drop it as it was causing her so much stress, and when I say stress she was self abusing herself. she is happy with her subjects now, but I think taster sessions should reflect the course work, she was led to believe that she was able to do it. Sorry for digressing.

melodyangel Thu 17-Jan-13 14:32:12

Thanks everyone. He did well at his A levels but didn't get the grade he needed for Chem. He has been working really hard on his resits and working part time too. Really proud of him but still it's scary to think it may all go wrong again.

Going to try and read through the rest of the thread to catch up.

MABS - Hope your DD gets the results she needs in her french exam.

MABS Thu 17-Jan-13 18:15:54

good luck to him Melody smile

MABS Mon 21-Jan-13 11:10:20

she hated Georg last week, last one tmro = Bus studies. Hope you all doing ok.

Milliways Tue 22-Jan-13 22:05:58

Good Luck to all those sitting Maths tomorrow. DS has C3 & FP1 tomorrow (and M1 on Friday) so has been doing past papers every night for the last few weeks.

NewFerry Tue 22-Jan-13 22:18:35

Echoing the good luck wishes for those still doing exams, specially maths grin

minsmum Wed 23-Jan-13 18:08:58

My dd has just had a phone call from Exeter. It was from a student to have a chat about what it's like to be a student there and to answer any questions she might have. Isn't that lovely. A pity she wasn't here

mumeeee Fri 25-Jan-13 23:55:17

DD3 has now got two offers. One from University of Glamorgan and one from Greenwhich. We are excited for her and proud. She is 21?and has learning difficulties so she had had to work hard to get this far. She is doing BTECH Extended Diploma in IT.

Milliways Sat 26-Jan-13 10:39:56

Oh, well done to your DD3 Mumeeee smile

MABS Sat 26-Jan-13 10:41:22

brilliant Mumee!!

minsmum Sat 26-Jan-13 12:23:40

well done to your Dd3 Mummee you must be very proud of her.

NewFerry Sat 26-Jan-13 13:23:39

Great news mummee!

MariscallRoad Sat 26-Jan-13 14:56:29

mumeeee bravo to your DD3. Indeed she worked v hard and she should be proud of her achievement. Where does she like? Greenwich is really lovely - it is nearby.

Lovemynailstoday Mon 28-Jan-13 17:41:54

Anyone's DC applied to and heard back from St Andrews? The suspense is killing me. DD has other offers but REALLY wants to go there. I hear they are famous for being slow to reply.

mumeeee Mon 28-Jan-13 22:18:53

Thankyou everyone. MariscallRoad I thunk she would like to go to Greenwhich, University of Glamorgan is not far from us and her sisters are in London. She actually applied for an HND couse in Glamorgan with a view to going on to top it up to a degree, Greenwhich is a degree course and I know she really wants to do the degree but applied for a couple of HND's as she wanted to keep her options open. She is still waiting for 3 other universities. Bolton, Kinston and Univesjty of West London. Bolton asked her to email her qualifications to them which she has done.

TheSecondComing Mon 28-Jan-13 22:21:47

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MariscallRoad Mon 28-Jan-13 23:07:23

mumeee, Greenwich is a v good uni tand it is one of the loveliest environments for students, your DD will enjoy greatly. There is so much around. There are markets, and loads of affordable music & theatre for students very close smile The campuses are in beautiful listed buildings.

Milliways Tue 29-Jan-13 17:23:05

The SecondComing - I believe both of those made offers to those who applied earlier. DS is going to an Offer Holders Day at York tomorrow. Hopefully you will hear soon.

TheSecondComing Tue 29-Jan-13 18:30:44

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

CherryLip Tue 29-Jan-13 18:39:59

The Second Coming- still waiting on Kings's here!

NewFerry Tue 29-Jan-13 21:44:12

DS is also off to an offers holders day tomorrow, at Warwick.

I wonder if lots of students are going to be travelling round the country tomorrow! smile

MABS Wed 30-Jan-13 18:21:09

great to read all this, sorry for silence , ds was in hospital sad

goinggetstough Wed 30-Jan-13 19:48:04

mabs hope your DS has recovered now?

MABS Wed 30-Jan-13 21:39:02

Thanks for asking, not very good I'm afraid sad

goinggetstough Wed 30-Jan-13 21:50:46

Sorry to hear that Mabs.

NewFerry Thu 31-Jan-13 08:15:59

So sorry to hear your little one is poorly mabs. x sad

MariscallRoad Thu 31-Jan-13 12:03:11

MABS, sorry to hear, hugs x sad

melodyangel Thu 31-Jan-13 13:10:52

Oh MABS sorry to hear your DS is poorly. PM if there is anything you need I think I'm local to you.

MABS Thu 31-Jan-13 17:25:28

Thanks girls, really appreciate it, just exhausted now and DD's 18th this w/e!!

JellicleCat Mon 04-Feb-13 23:27:35

Sorry to hear about your ds MABS.

JellicleCat Mon 04-Feb-13 23:28:23

Anyone waiting to hear from Edinburgh?

mumeeee Tue 05-Feb-13 22:18:39

DD3 has now had another ofer this time from Bolton. She is still waiting for Kingston and University of West London. How's your DS Mabs?

Moominmammacat Wed 06-Feb-13 13:05:09

DS is waiting for Edinburgh ... email from them to say prob. decision by end of March, otherwise could be May. He applied last year for another subject and got his offer v. late, April I think.

MABS Wed 06-Feb-13 14:20:50

thanks for asking re ds, not good, he being readmitted to hosp first thing tmro sad

NewFerry Wed 06-Feb-13 16:59:41

Mabs, so sorry.
Such a worrying time for you.
Sending best wishes and a prayer x

MariscallRoad Wed 06-Feb-13 19:08:19

Mabs, so sorry to hear. wishes and prayers to get well x

MABS Sat 09-Feb-13 16:28:30

Thx all, just home x

MABS Mon 11-Feb-13 16:55:20

any more replies guys? smile

MariscallRoad Tue 12-Feb-13 18:10:38

Nice to have your DS home! smile

mumeeee Wed 13-Feb-13 00:02:12

I'm glad your DS is home Mabs. DD3 has been turned down by University of West London,which she is disappointed about as she fancied going there. She now seems to be gearing towards Bolton and has just booked an open day there. She is still waiting for Kingston.

ISingSoprano Wed 13-Feb-13 08:41:16

Ds had his interview at Swansea last week so is still waiting to hear from them about an offer (or rejection!). We have one more applicant visit day to go to on Saturday and then it's decision time!

ISingSoprano Wed 13-Feb-13 18:11:35

Last offer now received - hurrah! Time for some decisions....

MABS Wed 13-Feb-13 18:13:23

glad he heard! sorry mummee... but dd said Boltin is good , has friend there.

ISingSoprano Wed 13-Feb-13 19:22:34

Have to say the applicant visit days we have been to have been really good - lots of opportunity to talk to lecturers and students.

Milliways Wed 13-Feb-13 21:44:50

Yes, visits are good but DS has liked them all so final decisions are hard. He has his final offer visit next week to Nottingham, so will see if that moves Manchester from its place as his probable favourite. (Why are all his choices SO far up the country!)

mumeeee Wed 13-Feb-13 21:53:37

IThanks Mabs. I'm very nervous about DD3 going to Bolton as she has learning difficulties and it's a long way from us. She has booked a post applicant visit in April and we are going up for the weekend to look round. I'm sure she'll be fine it's just me worying.

MariscallRoad Thu 14-Feb-13 11:38:33

mummeeee some students might be entitled to mentors at the uni if they have entitlements to DSA. DD would have to contact student services regards her condition when she enrolls. She would need to make an application to studentfinance for DSA submitting evidence from a doc or specialist. When the ap is approved she will see a needs assessor. DD might wish to contact student services now to see what preparations she needs.

MABS Thu 14-Feb-13 17:05:21

totally understand mummee, will be like that with ds in 6 years i know..

eatyourveg Thu 14-Feb-13 19:09:09

One of my supported students is heading for Canterbury next year and they have been really helpful, he seems to have sorted out a support package tailored to his particular difficulties. Bolton will no doubt also have some sort of support package available. See here

goinggetstough Fri 15-Feb-13 09:02:01

Mumee congratulations to your DD. Do apply for disability student allowance as soon as possible. I know you mentioned your DD has learning difficulties so to apply you will need an educational psychologist's report that was written after her 16th birthday and depending on her issues maybe a letter written by a her Doctor or Consultant. IME these things can take time. The DSA process is straightforward but it takes longer the closer you get to September.

It is a centralised process and the assistance that your DD will get will be the same wherever she goes to University. i make this point as some previosu posters mig make it seem that it depends on the University, it doesnt!

The DSA (part of student finance) will receive the application and say yes or no to her entitlement. Then she has to arrange what is called an Needs Assessment. Here she has an interview at a centre( these are all over the country) and the Needs Assessor will decide what assistance would help. It is not a pass or fail interview as by now DSA will have been authorised. They will decide what equipment would be useful and what softeware might help her. Plus they will allocate the number of hours for a mentor/ study support tutor. Your DD is allowed to take someone to the interview with her. I went with my DC. At the interview there are often bits of kit for her to try out eg naturally speaking ( voice recognition software) or inspiration ( mind map software). Shortly after the interview you will get a list of items to help your daughter, they put the equipment out to tender and then you will be told what she will receive.

Some Univerisities actually arrange meetings prior to the course starting. We found this very useful. When you go to the Open Day at Bolton it may be worth asking about numbers in lectures, seminars especially if this will affect your DD as the Needs Assessor will ask.

Overall it is really is a straightforward process. My only real tip is start applying now!

mumeeee Fri 15-Feb-13 11:49:14

Thanks everyone. When we went to an open day at UWE we spoke to the disability person there and showed her an asessment she had done when she was 19 and they said that that would be fine but to get a letter from our GP as well. She has a genetic condition/dyspraxia ( actually they think her condition actually caused the dyspraxia) and the doctor has a letter from the specalist, but this was from when she was about 7 or 8. I have got all the reports from the educational phsycholagists. So do you think it would be a good idea to send those? I'm going to get back in touch with the genetic speccalist. We were waiting to apply when she's had all her offers but may look into it now if people think it's a good idea.

MariscallRoad Fri 15-Feb-13 12:31:49

mumeeee The diagnosis on SLDs is written by a qualified person: a registered Ed Ps or an approved specialist such as Patoss and is written in a format in accordance with 2005 DfES guidelines and should say so. It can be a long document. This report is attached to the application for DSA of the student to StudentFinance and all emailed or posted to them. NHS does not fund Ed Ps. The appointment and diagnostic report takes time. Students would need to find ways to finance this diagnosis. Certain universities do have an in-house student screening service which then makes arrangements with a registered Ed Ps outside to carry out the diagnostic report and these student services do pay for the largest part or the whole of the diagnosis costs whereas the student contributes to a small %. This has a really been great help for students I know.

DD should then receive (do follow up with phone calls though) from her application a letter from Student Finance saying whether tshe is entitled tthe DSA and that she is required to see a needs assessor for her entitlements. The needs assessor might recommend to the studentfinance several entitlements. One of them would/could be a mentor provided from the university at the cost of Student finance. A mentor is a really great support we have found.

Now, all this takes time, and best to start asap, for example in some cases I know, it has taken long for entitlements and you need to speak to the student services there. I am sure that the university will take the best of care smile

mumeeee Fri 15-Feb-13 15:49:44

The g

mumeeee Fri 15-Feb-13 16:04:22

Thanks. We have an assessment done in January 2011 done by a qualified and approved person.,This is the assessment we showed the disability support person at UWE, DD also had a diagnosis of 18p deletion syndrome which basically means she has part of her number 18 chromosome missing. This was found out at a genetic clinic and documented properly. I have spoken to the clinic today and the consultant who tested her is still at the clinic. His secretary told me that our GP would have a copy of the letter and this is what the disability support person said would be okay. We are in Wales and there is a shortage of Educational Phsycholagists. I'll get her to talk to her tutor at college on Monday. .

MariscallRoad Fri 15-Feb-13 16:49:04

Also PATOSS, they are teachers specialist who have licence can diagnose SLDs. you can search this page for nearest in Wales Try and collect all diagnoses asap so you are ready because DSA approval does takes some time. The university will provide good care for DD. DD needs to try and get a good suitable student accommodation and make enquiries from now. I hope you will get a mentor, it is v good thing smile

creamteas Sat 16-Feb-13 12:55:22

I'm sure someone mentioned applying to UWE for politics and international relations. Might have been Mumble might not.

I have heard on the grapevine that there is a consultation about the future of this course at UWE. You might want to look into this before accepting an offer.

When a course closes, usually they stop new admissions and just finish teaching the existing students. Staff that are at risk of losing their jobs obviously start looking immediately, so students can be left in a dept with either demoralised existing staff or people on temporary contracts brought in to replace the ones that have left.

creamteas Sat 16-Feb-13 13:19:55

Should have said, threatened closure says nothing about the quality, popularity or success of a course.

In the new brave world of marketized higher education sad sometimes senior management decide that certain courses are outside of the 'brand image' or 'strategic focus'. Because obviously this is far more important than good education hmm

goinggetstough Sat 16-Feb-13 20:00:11

Oh that's interesting creamteas we went to a post offer open day for the IR course a few weeks ago. It was very impressive. That will be a shame if my DC has to cross that one off the list.
Thanks for the info!

minsmum Sun 17-Feb-13 13:14:18

So after getting offers from Lancaster, Exeter, 2 from Uea & brighton my dd had decided that her 1st choice is going to be UEA with Brighton as her back up.

Anyone else had decisions made yet?

MABS Sun 17-Feb-13 13:44:06

Manchester for dd with Northumbria as back up here.

minsmum Sun 17-Feb-13 16:20:05

Manchesters lovely Mabs

MABS Wed 20-Feb-13 20:40:10

Good to smilehear

ISingSoprano Wed 27-Feb-13 17:03:25

How's it going with everyone? The deed is done here, DS has just made his offer acceptances on UCAS. Southampton is his Firm and Plymouth his Insurance. Just got to get the grades now.....