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Crash an SQA Advanced Higher in a science in just a year? Does it happen?

(13 Posts)
EventualWinner Fri 28-Mar-14 15:26:11

DS needs three Sciences at Advanced Higher for the type of course he wants to do at university in England for admission 2015. (He has had a change of heart and believes a science/ engineering route would suit him rather than a business / accounting route.)

He is currently sitting Maths and Biology at Higher this summer term. (His other Higher subjects are English, Modern Studies and French.)
He needs to have another science and didn't take any at Int 2 stage. He can either do Physics or Chemistry although thinks Physics would give him more options.

I've never heard of someone taking a crash Advanced Higher in S6. Assuming the school would allow him or assuming we could find a centre has anyone got experience or knowledge of this?

starving Fri 28-Mar-14 16:29:03

I have never come across anyone doing a crash AH in one year, at DDs school they insist on an A or a B at Higher in order to attempt the AH. That is not to say that it isn't possible, it is just a lot of hard work! You need to speak to the school about it. What about doing the 2 AH Maths, would that be a possibility? Do you/he have any particular courses or unis in mind.

When we were looking at s6 options for dd she contacted 3 of the unis that she was looking at and asked for their advice as to what subjects would be most helpful. Two of the unis replied and were actually very informative. The third just repeated the blurb from the prospectus so not very helpful at all. She actually followed the advice of the admissions tutor and now has a few offers for the autumn.

EventualWinner Fri 28-Mar-14 17:08:33

DS was supposed to speak to Head of Year today but didn't manage so that conversation is still to be had. I am off to explore the AH Maths options. I was unaware there was a choice.

However for many of the Engineering courses in particular Physics at AH is obligatory- as is getting an A or B. For Biomedical science he needs something beyond just Biology and Maths so in those instances perhaps Chemistry.

I was just wondering whether the depth of study is too great. I did imagine that we would need to 'buy in' the help of a tutor or a graduate to supplement the school's AH course. He reckons he could start working on it from the end of May and be reasonably far into the Higher syllabus when school starts back in August.

I don't want to discourage him at the moment because at long last he is showing an interest beyond gaming.

EventualWinner Fri 28-Mar-14 17:22:35

Should have added, good for your DD getting several offers. You must be glad that she has several offers from which to choose.

I think he has sent emails to some of the Unis and this is why he wants the new AH so much.

AMumInScotland Fri 28-Mar-14 17:26:24

I was going to suggest cracking on with it from after exams through till autumn - after that it will depend if the school are prepared to let him, and also if the timetable would make it possible.

It sounds like hard work - did he do well at Standard Grade, and is he finding the maths ok? It will be a big jump, but that doesn't mean he wouldn't be capable.

EventualWinner Fri 28-Mar-14 18:30:24

Int 2 maths was somewhere in the 90s and he was in the high 80s for his Higher maths prelim so he would certainly have been capable of doing it across two years. I however have no idea how big the 'jump' will be as he is my eldest.

Take your point about timetabling, I hadn't considered that.

mary21 Fri 28-Mar-14 19:37:54

Would he be able to take an access to science or engineering course. Designed for people with non standard entry requirements

EventualWinner Fri 28-Mar-14 21:42:49

mary21 Thank you for that I have now read some very positive things about Access courses particularly for England & Wales but just looked up our two local colleges and nothing matches his needs sadly.

He has to stay on at school for S6 as he will still have AH in Maths and AH in Biology to sit. My understanding is he has to do all three AHs in the one sitting to get into the English Unis he favours.

I think he needs to get hold of his Head of Year and one of the senior science teachers and find out very specifically what the "jump" is between the two levels. Even for a reasonably competent lad it might just be far too much from a standing start and that's why no one has heard of it...

EventualWinner Mon 31-Mar-14 10:14:39

Starving DS is asking today at school about Advanced Higher Mechanical Maths.

Has anyone got experience of this exam especially with a view to university entrance?

JellicleCat Tue 01-Apr-14 00:20:35

Make sure you know how much contact time there is for AH at Ds's school. For AH Maths DD had 6 lessons a week, but only 3 for AH Physics and her 3rd subject. Advanced Highers are tough enough for those with good grades at Higher when they only get a few hours a week with a teacher, I think they would be very difficult indeed for those without a Higher.

I'd contact the unis DS has in mind, but personally I would go for Higher Physics. Better an A at Higher than a fail at AH (and would get him an insurance place at a Scottish Uni too)

EventualWinner Tue 01-Apr-14 13:54:28

Good point Jellicle. I'd just assumed (wrongly) that all AHs had the same amount of teaching time.

This is becoming a bit of a non starter I think. However it's better that DD comes to that conclusion himself. I'd rather he stayed in Scotland for his undergraduate course for obvious reasons and then perhaps did further study elsewhere if that's what he wants to do...

I don't remember the school telling us at S6 Options evening that contact time is greater for maths than anything else...

EventualWinner Tue 01-Apr-14 14:06:05

Oops I meant DS. DD is in S1 and dealing with a brand new exam system...

JellicleCat Tue 01-Apr-14 22:21:26

No-one told us anything about contact time for Advanced Highers! No doubt it changes depending on the school, but I was a bit gob-smacked to find they only had 3 lessons a week for an AH course.

DD had ideas about doing a degree in England until we pointed out the difference in cost. Fortunately she saw sense smile.

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