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DS/DD suddenly NOT off to uni- support thread for those faced with sharing their lives with their adult children for another year

(37 Posts)
duchesse Thu 18-Aug-11 15:20:36

OK, ok, tongue, but seriously, what the heck is my DS going to do? He has done badly at A level and been turned down by both his universities. My personal feeling is that instead of chasing a dwindling number of increasingly rubbish courses, he could do worse than work for a year and retake his A levels. I have NO idea why he did so badly- he is not stupid, has no substance dependency issues, and claimed to want to do the subjects he was doing. He just didn't do enough work. He says that he wants to go to university but wouldn't work for it over the last two years.

Tether's. end. He is so immature.

duchesse Thu 18-Aug-11 15:20:52

*tongue in cheek, clearly...

AMumInScotland Thu 18-Aug-11 15:26:54

A year of work could do wonders for his maturity - just make sure he is expected to work and contribute to the household properly and doesn't have any idea that he can be a "passenger"!

snorkie Thu 18-Aug-11 15:34:56

Oh dear. He & you need to talk to the school to discuss options, which I guess come down to retakes in January, retaking the whole year or moving on to something else entirely. Fees aside though, having another year might be very good for him to mature a bit and gain a bit of an understanding of the real world and to decide what he really wants to do with himself. Having a clear idea of where he wants to be is the best thing for sorting out the drive and motivation to get there. I often think boys in particular aren't quite ready to leave home at 18.

Snuppeline Thu 18-Aug-11 15:38:49

Look on the brighter side, at least he didn't get himself off to uni and into dept while still immature and unlikely to work very hard. This experience may be what he needs to grow up and then apply himself more when he does get to uni - if that's what he still wants.

Happened to many I know who went on to do brilliantly both at uni when they eventually got around to going (have also done brilliantly in later life).

I second what AMumInScotland says though, make sure he knows that as long as he's not in fulltime education he has to pay his way.

sieglinde Thu 18-Aug-11 15:54:37

duchesse, there are reasons why universities ask for exam marks. They are an index of many things besides raw ability - maturity, ability to defer gratification and to plan. He's probably not ready, in which case the LAST thing you want to do is to pack him off to be miserable. A year working and retaking will probably be just the ticket - said she, who has an idle DS as well, who is a cocky little bugger young man, always lucky with exams, but will I think get one comeuppance this time next week, about which I am grinding my teeth to powder. He's been working in a lab for most of the summer, doing scutwork, but doing it quite eagerly. I think a job of actual work is just what they all need.

sayithowitis Thu 18-Aug-11 17:04:55

Would he be able to get onto/consider a foundation year? he would then be at university, working towards getting on his degree course, and may have more drive to continue there than having to find a job and do re-takes as well?

MiraNova Thu 18-Aug-11 17:31:47

Think about encouraging him to apply for some apprenticeships. There are some good ones out there, and more companies are starting them, as there is an expectation that fewer people will go onto university.. (should re-open soon for 2012 applicants)

BertieBotts Thu 18-Aug-11 17:35:47

Working for a year def a good plan smile Should give him some thinking time, and a new perspective as well.

casawasa Thu 18-Aug-11 17:38:30

Could he do a course online while working? There are lots of great courses available. is very useful.
I know its not what he expected to be doing but as we know life doesnt always turn out as planned. I hope he finds a solution that he is happy with.

hellsbells4 Thu 18-Aug-11 17:47:14

hope things pan out ok duchesse. My dd's results were bad. (C, E). Luckily she has already got a job, and can take this year to ponder what she really wants to do -either retake A levels if she decides she really does want to go to uni, or perhaps a vocational degree, or continue working. She is very immature and I think this year could be a huge benefit to her long term. You don't have to go to uni at 18/19 - I think she would get far more out of it at 20+.

duchesse Thu 18-Aug-11 18:06:14

Thanks all- he went out on his bicycle shortly about an hour ago before getting a call from Swansea, from a Professor something (DD1 took the message). He said he'd call back tomorrow. I hope he does...

drcrab Fri 19-Aug-11 07:42:18

So did the professor from Swansea call back? Is Swansea his insurance? Or did he apply through clearing for Swansea? What does your DS want to do?

Chances are the prof wants to speak to your son bright and early (is he awake??) to discuss the course, his grades and how it possibly went wrong (never blame the teacher or say 'I was bored)... And just possibly offer you a place. I might be wrong though. Make sure he sounds awake and keen!!

Good luck.

drcrab Fri 19-Aug-11 08:06:16

And if by say 9-9.30 the prof doesn't call back, call them. It's good to show keenness and enthusiasm. Do you know what course he applied for, I'm assuming, in clearing??

Sorry if this sounds like a lecture... It's not! smile pm me if you want to discuss this privately. Otherwise I'm going to lurk here anyways.

duchesse Fri 19-Aug-11 09:06:33

Yup, we got him out of bed at 7am so he'd be pointing in the right direction, and made him email the lecturer yesterday evening to explain why he hadn't been here when he called. Thx for all your advice. It's the first time we're doing this and obviously we didn't go through this to this extent (ie the internet, & speed at which clearing is happening) when we applied to university so we are finding our way ourselves to some extent.

duchesse Fri 19-Aug-11 09:09:00

And, yes he applied to Swansea yesterday through clearing. Also applied to Sheffield but was turned down flatly.

drcrab Fri 19-Aug-11 09:17:55

Good luck when he speaks to the prof. Is this a programme of study that he really wants to pursue?

Frankly if I'd not been an admissions tutor I wouldn't even know that all this goes on. I doubt my colleagues are aware how the system works if they've never done a stint of this! grin

Choufleur Fri 19-Aug-11 09:22:41

What does he want to do. Are there other routes into careers that he could follow instead of a degree? Apprenticeships etc?

duchesse Fri 19-Aug-11 09:24:34

He's just phoning now! fingers crossed. I primed him what not to say, but tbh his most likely answer would have been that he didn't know why he'd done so badly. I primed him not to say that as well. He's going to say the truth, which is that he was a fool and didn't work hard enough.

duchesse Fri 19-Aug-11 09:25:26

drcrab- yes the course he applied for is engineering as well, the right sort of engineering. He was just super-lucky there were still places when he applied yesterday.

Pippaandpolly Fri 19-Aug-11 09:26:45

If he doesn't go then having a year to work and mature might be really helpful. I know a few people who scraped into uni but, because they really weren't mature or motivated enough, ended up kicked out after first year exams anyway. (All men incidentally-without meaning to gender stereotype I think 18 year old girls do tend to be a lot more focused than their male peers. Not in every case, obviously!)

duchesse Fri 19-Aug-11 09:38:50

He was offered a place when he rang the university!! He's just about to go and accept it now. What a relief!

Pippaandpolly Fri 19-Aug-11 09:39:29

Phew grin

duchesse Fri 19-Aug-11 09:39:48

We impressed on him quite how much work he would have to do.

duchesse Fri 19-Aug-11 09:40:54

Slightly reassured as well by the fact that two of our friends lecture at Swansea, in a different department, but must be a decent university as these are good people.

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