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Changing subject at Uni - clearing or reapply next year?

(31 Posts)
RandomFriend Fri 07-Aug-15 14:07:47

DD has changed her mind about which subject she wants to do. She has a place for music but has recently decided that she would rather do History or English instead.

She has her IB results, which is 37 points and now has an unconditional firm offer from a very good university. She is considering possibly retaking one of her Standard Level subjects to get two extra points.

Can someone talk me through the relative merits of applying next year verses going through Clearing next week for a change of subject. Or should she just take up her place and do music?

Millymollymama Fri 07-Aug-15 14:42:10

Are you going to find History or English at a top class university in clearing? These are very sought after subjects with many well qualified students rejected from them at the best places. I think I would see what is required, IB points wise, at the universities she really wants to go to, decide if it is history or English as she has written a personal statement for music and apply next year for the courses at the universities she really wants. One with lots of music clubs maybe? If the course and university of her dreams is in clearing, go for it. I just feel it might feel second best although some Russell Group unis are not full up - it remains to be seen if that is for History and English.

betternextlife Fri 07-Aug-15 15:14:21

Clearing is already open for IB students, so I would ring a few unis now and find out.

RandomFriend Fri 07-Aug-15 15:24:29

Millymollymama, thank you for your thoughts. Deciding whether it is History or English is a good idea, it seems such a sensible idea when it is written down. She should first decide which course she would most prefer to do just like the first time around, and take it from there.

betternextlife She has been ringing a few universities, they have said things like "History is full" or "We don't know how whether we have spaces until A-level results day".

It is very frustrating for her as she didn't do as well in music as she had hoped but wants to start uni in September at the same time as her friends.

Mindgone Fri 07-Aug-15 17:50:00

DS1 changed his mind about his course on results day two years ago! He hadn't wanted a gap year at all, but it seemed the most sensible thing to do, rather than making a rushed decision over something so important, and expensive!! He did have a tough time at first, when he was busy applying for jobs, and his friends were posting all their freshers photos on FB. But it passed, he got a full time job, researched courses again, went to different open days, and applied again. It was so much less stressful applying with known grades, and all offers were unconditional. One of his best friends took an unplanned gap year too, so at least he had a buddy left behind! He also really enjoyed visiting his friends at different unis.
Good accommodation can be a problem too with a last minute application.
It's only a year, and it passes pretty quickly. I think it did DS1 the world of good, he was more mature, had more money, and was very excited to get back to studying when he went off last autumn!
I hope your DD makes the right decision for her.

Millymollymama Fri 07-Aug-15 22:27:35

I forgot about the accommodation problem! Insurance offers and clearing may not get a uni hall because they are past the deadline for accommodation applications. I am not surprised History is full. The gap year, with a chance to look at suitable universities for a different subject, writing a fresh application and maybe getting a job is worthwhile. Work experience is always, always useful so it could be a very productive year. Making an expensive mistake by jumping into any university that will have her might be regretted later.

MoralityPlay Sat 08-Aug-15 16:17:36

Well done to your DD wine 37 points is a decent score (despite what it feels like on MN wink ) I think your DD should continue phoning around - she could even try this week when the uni's get the ALevel results. She would have to be lucky to get through to someone helpful but it's worth a try. I was worried DS2 would miss his grades and phoned a couple of uni's on his behalf just before the results came out. They couldn't have been more helpful. They were high ranking uni's too. Fortunately DS2 got his grades.
If she really can't decide then she should seriously consider a gap year. I've never met anyone who regrets it. None of my dCs took a gap year but all think they are good option and much better than starting a course you are not sure about.

RandomFriend Tue 11-Aug-15 16:49:00

Thank you for the replies. I am coming round to the idea that a gap year would be better than making a snap decision on place/course.

Thanks MoralityPlay for reminding me that 37 is a good score. I wonder if it would be enough to get an unconditional offers if she applies for 2016?

I called Edinburgh, and they said that this year all of the people they were taking had 42-45 points. (I think he must be mixed up - surely that cannot be true?)

MoralityPlay Tue 11-Aug-15 18:45:16

37 points is good enough to get into many medical schools. It's a very good score.
If she takes a gap year and reapplied then all her offers will be unconditional.
A gap year would give her lots of time to research all her options.
I've just had a quick look at edinbrugh entry requirements and there IB requirements are all over the place confused. Some history courses ask for 40 points and others 34 -
Eg Ancient History is 34 points, Its odd. Maybe you can have a closer look.

gonegrey56 Thu 13-Aug-15 13:03:57

Today's Times newspaper is reporting that Durham has both History and English in clearing.

shovetheholly Thu 13-Aug-15 15:29:30

One thing to consider - it's very possible tuition fees will go up in the next year, meaning more debt if a gap year is taken. So it might be well worth getting on the phone straight away.

titchy Thu 13-Aug-15 15:45:52

Tuition fees won't go up next year. It'll be a couple of years at least before they do. Probably more.

shovetheholly Thu 13-Aug-15 15:48:17

The rise is predicted to happen in 2017/18, so the academic year starting next September, not this September.

titchy Thu 13-Aug-15 16:24:44

Next year is 16/17 not 17/18.....

It can't happen till TEF does, and the metrics around that are nowhere near being clear yet.

shovetheholly Thu 13-Aug-15 18:39:28

Titchy - you're right, I'm an IDIOT! Sorry!

titchy Thu 13-Aug-15 18:57:56


RandomFriend Fri 14-Aug-15 11:03:21

OK, so DD is now in Adjustment, and trying to find a place for either English or History (or preferably a combination) at an RG university.

She really wants to start this September, as all her friends will be at uni and she doesn't want to be left here on a gap year.

MoralityPlay Fri 14-Aug-15 14:54:38

Good luck, I hope she finds something quickly.

LIZS Fri 14-Aug-15 15:03:09

Good luck to randomfriends' dd . Dn has got her insurance offer at Swansea with bcc for History/American studies so there may be hope.

RandomFriend Fri 14-Aug-15 15:03:17

gonegrey56 thanks for the tip.

NiceCardigan Fri 14-Aug-15 17:00:45

Durham isn't in clearing for English and History but they do use adjustment.

MoralityPlay Sat 15-Aug-15 09:20:40

Did you daughter find somewhere?

RandomFriend Mon 17-Aug-15 10:44:57

Thanks for asking, Morality. DD has two adjustment offers. One is in London (RG) and the other at a red-brick uni.

AIBU to hope that she will accept her original offer and give music a try? It is such a lovely university, collegial, and DD has a place in the most sought-after college.

Fallulah Mon 17-Aug-15 10:57:38

Not U to hope but it's not you who has to do the course! What had she hoped to do with a music degree? It's easier to do English/History and join lots of ensembles/enrichment for music than it is to do it the other way around, and English/History give possibly more general career options.
Life at the university itself is a big factor though - has she been for a look around the ones she has offers for?

MoralityPlay Mon 17-Aug-15 16:24:49

That's great that she has a choice although sometimes too much choice just confuses things. smile. I don't think she has long to decide if she is doing adjustment.

Is accommodation going to be a consideration?

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