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Can fomal gymnastic levels such as BG add ucas points for HE / Uni application?

(37 Posts)
phonemum Thu 04-Jun-15 12:12:28

Just want to know. I ve heard people talking about dance and music exams will add points when applying for unis. I don't hear about sports adding ucas points.

My 12 yr o dd s very flexible, small and strong also a fast runner. She loves gymnastics and now doing two hrs a week may increase to 4hrs. Although I knew she was the right material for the sport the gymnastic group she joined in in her early years is not a very competitive one so she missed out on the opportunity to achieve better. Anyway I think by now it s unlikely that she will ever compete in high level completions.

Still I want to know if gymnastics or other sports achievements can add ucas points?

BTW what career options are there for gymnasts apart from completions?

Constructive comments please. smile

Sigma33 Thu 04-Jun-15 12:23:26

I think any extra-curricular activity that has been done in a way that shows commitment and self-discipline will be a great selling point for UCAS/HE. There would be various sports science options, but if she wanted to do something completely unrelated to gymnastics, it would not be time wasted. It would make her a far more attractive candidate than someone with equal grades who spent their teen years hanging out with their friends. Probably more attractive than someone with higher grades but no evidence of staying power or the ability to work at what they do.

If she enjoys it and wants to take it seriously, go for it. I wouldn't worry too much at 12 about career options, unless she is passionate about a particular direction that needs commitment this early - but it sounds as if you know that gymnastics itself will not be a career.

phonemum Thu 04-Jun-15 12:47:17

Thanks Sigma, A while ago my dd wished she could do gymnastic completions notionally. I think that her chance is rather very slim. Although she wishes to be able to do gymnastic everyday for hours I doubt she would ever be selected. I would say she has the right body for the sport.

BertrandRussell Thu 04-Jun-15 12:51:07

"It would make her a far more attractive candidate than someone with equal grades who spent their teen years hanging out with their friends. Probably more attractive than someone with higher grades but no evidence of staying power or the ability to work at what they do.

Sorrh, this just isn't true. Extra curricular activities only count if they are relevant to the course being applied to. Do gymnastics because she enjoys it, it will keep her fit and busy- but it won't add UCAS points.

phonemum Thu 04-Jun-15 13:03:48

Are such music, dance and drama types ex-curriculums more relevant to ucas?

BertrandRussell Thu 04-Jun-15 13:07:07

No. Only if they are relevant to the course. Obviously they give you something to talk about in your personal statement- but what UCAS want is grades, grades and more grades,

Ishouldbeweaving Thu 04-Jun-15 18:15:15

This is the link to the UCAS tariff table and you can see what awards give you what points. If the university admission requirement is in grades rather than points then nothing other than grades counts towards the entry requirement.

Sigma33 Fri 05-Jun-15 09:38:43

Then why do UCAS bother with a personal statement?

Sure, it won't help if you fail your exams and then say "but hey, I do gymnastics". But uni's know their ability to attract students depends on more than the academics they can offer. So they need students that will contribute to a range of clubs and activities AS WELL as passing their course (because drop out rates also affect recruitment, so evidence of self-discipline matters). Or so friends who are part of the selection process at Exeter Uni tell me.

Which is also the opinion of a friend who went to Cambridge - only a handful of candidates are accepted because they are potential Nobel prizewinners, and their extra-curricular activities are irrelevant and they can have the social skills of a slug. The other few thousand each year are selected because they are adequate academically, but offer more than academic ability, because that sets them apart from all the others who are 'merely' adequate academically (which, of course, is a high standard when it comes to Cambridge - but they are vastly over-subscribed, and cannot offer places to every candidate who achieves their academic standard).

BertrandRussell Fri 05-Jun-15 09:41:29

It would be obviously discriminatory for universities to be influenced by extra curricular activities. They aren't. Unless they are directly related to the course.

MomOfTwoGirls2 Fri 05-Jun-15 11:24:18

2 or 4 hours a weeks is actually very little for serious gymnastics. In our club the competition teams train 4 days per week, and up to 6 days prior to competitions.

At our club a lot of the talented teenages get into coaching. I think min age is 16. While still in secondary school, many of them spend the summer coaching in American summer camps. Which is a fabulous opportunity and experience. But it doesn't become a career for most of them. Most of the senior coaches have other full time jobs, and coaching earns them extra money on the side.

The two careers that come to mind for me are PE teacher, or career in Recretional Management (working in gyms, leisure centres, etc...)

phonemum Fri 05-Jun-15 11:54:22

Thanks mumoftwo as I said I doubt she would be selected for any high level training but that's not an issue for dd. She enjoys the sport that's all it matters. I can see pro and cons for serious training anyway. Dd just wishes to be able to have fun with gymnastics everyday. Medals and prizes are not important.

JulieMichelleRobinson Fri 05-Jun-15 11:56:54

When I applied to university at KCL, there were at least ten applicants for each place on my course (in reality I'd guess more than ten per place). Assuming that you don't apply unless you're fairly likely to get the grades required... How do you choose from amongst all the applicants? You look at their personal statement and their extra-curriculars. A good personal statement will stress how the extra-curriculars are relevant to the course - which may be by means of transferrable skills, such as leadership, teamwork, dedication, organisation etc.

BertrandRussell Fri 05-Jun-15 11:59:22


OK- you know best.

MayPolist Fri 05-Jun-15 17:38:29

sigma33 with the exception od a few 'people centred' courses such as medicine, Oxford and Cambridge have zero interest in extra curriculars unless related to their chosen course.
They separate the wheat from the chaff by means of their own admissions tests (eg MAT, PAT, sTEP papers) and by interview.Often the interview process will incorporate a test as well.

nephilim7 Fri 05-Jun-15 21:54:21

My DD already has 160 Ucas points from dance exams- she is 15. The course she wants to do asks for 260 UCAS points so this will be helpful.

AuditAngel Fri 05-Jun-15 22:22:19

I work for a top 20 accountancy practice. When I was involved in recruiting trainees, we had a UCAS requirement and did include extra curricular UCAS points.

LIZS Sat 06-Jun-15 08:13:08

The official list is . No gymnastics as far as I can see.

lechie Sat 06-Jun-15 10:59:40

No, gymnastics grading doesn't work in the same way as dance or music as it's not an exam, it's just a competition with set pieces in. My DD does both.

In terms of UCAS, it won't really be worth much. It's not even really relevant for personal statements unless they're using it to show other skills like they're good at time management or something. And only then if they have been doing it recently. No university will be interested in hearing about how they did gym at 12 or even 14. Bearing in mind most girls 'retire' from gym in their early teens, you're unlikely to be able to use it for UCAS.

My own daughter (now 11) has recently given up gym. Last year, she was training 18 hours a week. Now she's joined an advanced rec class and she's doing 3! However, at her club she's able to go on and train to become a gym coach and get a part time job through this. I know girls who have done this and used that for UCAS - in particular those who have gone into teacher training. To go into it with a level 2 gym coaching qualification... Unis have loved that. I also know people who have also gone into sports science and sports therapy (though not sure if or how they used it on their applications, but some of my students who have done these courses have used their own experiences in their own sports on their personal statements).

But beyond that, I'm not aware of it being of any UCAS support except for those who train at a very high level.

Alternatively, is there a display team nearby - that uses gym for fun and they often tour and do gym displays. My DD is looking to do that.

Other than that, just enjoy it for what it is - a great sport that they will really enjoy and get a lot out of!

mercia100 Sun 07-Jun-15 06:58:35

OP two hours a week is not a big comittment, nor even 4 I'm afraid.

I have a DD who dances to high grade level- she does 20 classes a week. Her exams are recognised by UCAS.

phonemum Sun 07-Jun-15 11:02:38

The problem is often down to the clubs that are available to our area. Also the knowledge of parents about extra-curriculums.

keeptothewhiteline Sun 07-Jun-15 13:25:50


MayPolist Mon 08-Jun-15 23:18:19

Mercia Even the most basic gymnastics grades usually require an absolute minimum of 6 -9 hours a week which quickly increases as you move up the grades.
The thing with gymnastics is that most people have reached their competitive ceiling before or shortly after they start secondary school and Universities generally have no interest in things that happen at that age.

MayPolist Mon 08-Jun-15 23:19:42

But gymnastics grades are a thing you fail pass or get distinction in at teh same time as being a comp

keeptothewhiteline Tue 09-Jun-15 05:40:56

maypolist- but the Op has said her 12 year old is doing 2 hours a week- that isn't very much.

MyPelvicFloorTrainsItself Tue 09-Jun-15 06:09:34

It's nice that she enjoys it but it won't make a difference to get university applications. The serious gymnasts here train for 2 hours a night from 4 yo! It's a huge commitment but they seem to love it.

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