the school*s perspective on higher education

Report
APPLYING TO HIGHER
EDUCATION
16th SEPTEMBER 2013
Demand for University Places
•
•
•
•
2013 entry:
Nationally applicants up by 3.5%
NI applicants up by 7.1%
QUB applicants up by 2.9% or 28%
including Nursing and Midwifery.
Changes in A level Grades
• 2.6% drop in number of A* & A grades
awarded in 2013.
• Removal of January AS and A level exam
sitting by English exam boards for 201314.
Demand for University Places
• Competition for places intense.
• Heavy cuts to public funding means strict
controls on number of new students an
institution can recruit.
• If this number is exceeded, severe
penalties are applied to the institution.
Demand for university places
• Despite the high level of overall demand,
there are places available on many
courses in Clearing, though few in QUB or
UU or on high demand courses.
• All applicants are advised to think hard
about the course and institution which best
suits them.
• Choose both firm and insurance offers
carefully.
Student Number Controls
•
•
•
•
Separate quotas for:
Home and EU students
Rest of GB students
International Students
Student Number Controls
• Applicants with ABB+ grades at English
Universities won’t count towards an
institution’s student number population.
• Universities can expand their number of
places for ABB+. May choose not to.
• Doesn’t mean an automatic place for
those with ABB+
• Some extra places in August.
• Still very competitive.
• Govt. cap on places with >ABB.
2010-11 Admissions Statistics,
Edinburgh University
College
Applicat Offers
ions
29,813 6,748
Hum &
Soc Sci
Med &
4,459
Vet
Sci & Eng 12,817
University 47,089
Accepts
2,204
Offer
Chances
22.6%
901
458
20.2%
5,188
1,140
40.5%
12,837
3,802
27.3%
Use of the A* Grade
• Competitive university courses often ask
for grades rather than tariff points.
• Increasing use of A* in offers.
• Oxbridge offers: AAA – A*A*A
• Other universities include Durham, Exeter,
Birmingham, London (King’s, Imperial),
LSE, Oxford, Bristol, Bath, QUB.
• Note that entry grades can change during
application cycle – just a guide. UU range.
The UCAS Tariff
A level grade
Tariff Points (AS)
A*
140
A
120 (60)
B
100 (50)
C
80 (40)
D
60 (30)
E
40 (20)
TIMETABLE OF EVENTS
• Ist Oct : CUKAS
• 15th October: UCAS deadline for receipt of
applications for Medicine, Dentistry, Veterinary,
Oxford and Cambridge.
• 27th September: school deadline.
• 15th January : UCAS deadline for all other
courses ( 24TH March )
• 8th November : school deadline : why?
• 26th Sept; 17th Oct: personal statements.
• 14th Nov: mock interviews. Apply by 10th Oct.
APPLICATIONS TIMETABLE
• Direct applications include:
• Some colleges of Art and Design.
• Education at St. Mary’s University College,
Belfast.
• Higher Education courses at Belfast
Metropolitan College and other F.E.
colleges. Social Work at BMC: apply
through UCAS.
Applications to ROI
• www.cao.ie
• Up to 10 course choices.
• No personal statement, predicted grades
or school reference.
• Selection based on A-level results.
• Apply by 1st February (40 Euro).
• 2550 Euro registration fee.
• Often need 4 A levels.
CAO Tariff Points
Grade
A level
AS level
A*
150
-
A
135
65
B
120
60
C
100
50
D
75
35
E
40
20
Universities outside B. Isles
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
Netherlands :
Apply by July
Application form; motivation letter; reference.
Website: www.studielink.nl
Lower tuition fees £1535/yr
£588 ave. living costs. (rent approx £320)
USA
High tuition fees
Scholarships – academic; sporting; Fulbright
Direct application
www.fulbright.org.uk
UCAS Applications
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
Apply online (£23 or £12)
Available from 1st September.
Up to 5 course choices
Only 4 medicine/dentistry/veterinary courses
Either Oxford or Cambridge
Change or withdraw application within 7 days.
Hardest section is personal statement:
Help available from careers staff: parental help vital too.
Especially important for high demand courses, but use
varies among institutions.
Course Choices
• Up to 5 courses (add courses up to 30th
June if <5)
• Alphabetical order
• Each university only sees its own courses
• Keep 2 offers : Conditional firm (first
choice) and conditional insurance : lower
grades/points ( second choice).
• Choose these carefully, esp CI – little
room for manoeuvre in August.
Confirmation, Clearing and
Adjustment in August.
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
If meet conditions of CF university will accept you.
If meet CI but not CF, will be offered CI
If meet neither : choose a course in clearing
UCAS Extra : early clearing (25th Feb – end of June).
May be accepted with reduced offers.
May or may not accept equivalent, eg. AAC instead of
ABB.
May offer a change of course.
Often have to wait for news.
Be prepared : read info sent by UCAS and HEIs
Very few courses in QUB or UU in Clearing in 2013.
Personal Statement
•
•
•
•
47 lines (350-550 words).
Basically 3 broad sections.
1. Academic section – the main one.
Those aspects of their A-level subjects
which they have enjoyed and have
influenced their choice of H.E. course.
• Why they want to study their chosen
courses – show evidence of careful
research.
Personal Statement (2)
•
•
•
•
2. Extra-curricular activities
Inside and outside school.
Not a list.
Analyse how these have helped them to
develop as a person.
• What skills and qualities have they
acquired through participation in these
activities.
Personal Statement (3)
•
•
•
•
•
3. Work experience & career plans
Work placements relevant to their courses.
Part-time jobs.
Future career plans, if known.
Analyse what skills and qualities they have
gained from these experiences.
• Analyse all experiences and relate,
where appropriate, to chosen courses.
High Demand Courses
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
Subjects vary among universities, but can include:
Medicine/Dentistry/Vet. Science
Allied Health Professions
Nursing/Midwifery
Law
Teaching
English/History/Economics/International Relations
Business Management/Accounting
Sports Science/Studies
Pharmacy;
STEM subjects.
How do universities deal with
the competition for places?
• Raise entry requirements.
• Ask for grades instead of UCAS Tariff points.
• Impose a minimum standard of achievement at
GCSE.
• Admissions tests.
• Unit grades.
• Compulsory interview/multi mini interviews
• Consider non-academic criteria.
• See ‘entry profiles’ on www.ucas.com
Personal Statement
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
Interest and commitment to subject.
Commitment to career in profession.
Relevant work experience.
Positions of responsibility.
Skills gained from these experiences.
Ability to think independently.
Personal statements may be ‘scored’ by
admissions tutors, but are used differently by
different universities – check.
Personal Statements : UU
• Faculty of Arts: must be well written with
correct punctuation, grammar and spelling.
• No more than 2 areas of interest – for
medium demand courses.
• Total commitment to: 2 sports degree
courses, social work and nursing.
• Recommend this for health-related and
popular vocational courses too.
• State if only applying to NI Institutions.
Personal Statements: QUB
• Must focus only on one degree subject:
medicine, dentistry, nursing & midwifery,
education.
• Otherwise can mention 2 alternatives
• QUB doesn’t score personal statement or
focus on it as much as other universities.
• Important in borderline decisions in
August.
How can applicants improve their
chances?
• Do their research – know what the
universities applied for require.
• Academic entry requirements – including
GCSEs – do they have them or are they
predicted to achieve them?
• Fulfilling any other requirements, eg. Work
experience – see entry profiles and
prospectuses.
• Do they have a life outside their studies?
How can applicants improve their
chances? (2)
• Make the most of the application form.
• Be focused and relevant.
• Make sure to include all the necessary
information.
• Communicate enthusiasm for and
understanding of the subject applied for.
• Ensure that grammar and spelling are
correct.
Sources of Guidance and
Information - Events
• 11th September : UU Open Day.
• 13th September : QUB Open Day.
• 12-13th September : Higher Education
Convention, Methodist College, Belfast.
• 29th August: Pre-UCAS Day (BHS)
• 30th August : Assessment Day (BHS).
• Open days at other H.E. institutions.
• 14th November : Mock interviews.
Events (2)
• PWC Insight Days: www.pwc.co.uk/careers
• 7th Oct: QUB Management School Parents
Evening 5.30-8.00pm
• 17th Oct: Humanities & Social Science – A Route
to Employment 7-9pm
• 23rd Oct: UU Allied Health Professions
• 4th Nov: QUB Engineering Parents Info Evening
Sources of Guidance and
Information - school
• Thursday afternoon careers classes:
• UCAS; interview skills; student finance &
budgeting; student life; careers; high
profile speakers.
• UCAS supervisor.
• DEL Careers Advisers.
• UCAS guidance booklets.
Sources of Information and
Guidance – useful websites
• www.ucas.com – parents zone.
• Intranet – for pupils - careers
• www.tqi.ac.uk – to compare university ratings across a number of
indicators.
• www.push.co.uk
• www.prospects.ac.uk – graduate careers
• www.careers-portal.co.uk
• www.gap.org.uk
• www.unistats.co.uk - KEY INFORMATION STATISTICS
• www.yougofurther.co.uk - student-only community website
supported by UCAS. Tailored info; online chat.
• QUB student portal
• UU “Going to University: A Guide for Families”
Sources of Guidance and
Information - books
• Degree Course Offers (Brian Heap)
• The Times Good University Guide - also at
www.timesonline.co.uk
• The Guardian University Guide : see
www.education.guardian.co.uk
• The Virgin Alternative Guide to British
Universities.
• University Interviews Guide.
• UCAS parents guide.
• See ‘Prospects’ handout.
Career Pathways
•
•
•
•
•
Which degree?
QUB Survey of Employers:
41% : no subject preference
41% : STEM
14%: Business
Growth Areas in NI
•
•
•
•
•
•
Advanced materials & Engineering*
Finance & Business Services (IT etc)
Life and Health Sciences
Creative Industries
Agri-Food
*aerospace, electrical, electronics,
automotive, renewables.
STEM
• Need for more STEM graduates in short &
medium term.
• 40,000 shortfall in UK/year
• Aim of NISP:
• 2030: NI: one of world’s foremost
knowledge & entrepreneurial economies in
world.
• Needs x2 STEM graduates
• 17th Sept : Belfast Telegraph
QUB Open Day 2013
•
•
•
•
•
2013 ENTRY:
Applications to QUB up by 4%
Applications nationally down by 7%
Good quality applicants
Higher entry grades.
Nursing & Midwifery
•
•
•
•
•
•
First time in UCAS.
2636 applications for 401 nursing places
879 applications for 35 midwifery places
Shortlisting for interview
Rigorous interview
Preparation : BHS;
www.3fivetwotraining.com
Increases in Applications
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
Highest increases:
Computer Science (+46.3%)
Chemical Engineering ( +30.6%)
Actuarial Studies (+28.7%)
Spanish & Portuguese (+22.7%)
Finance (+18.7%)
Dentistry (+17.3%)
Agri-Food & Land Use (16.5%)
Economics (+14.8%)
Precise Grades Only
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
Chemical Engineering (MEng)
Medicine*
Biomedical Sciences
Midwifery
Actuarial and Risk Management
*37 points GCSE/UKCAT threshold
592 interviewed
375 offers made
8 taken from reserve list in August (33 in 2012)
Averaged Out Above Target
• Finance
• Nursing
Averaged Out
•
•
•
•
Film Studies
Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
Biomedical Sciences
More places granted in latter tw0
Drop of <1 A level Grade
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
Business Information Technology
Electrical & Electronic Engineering
Chemistry
Agri-Food and Land Use
Biological Sciences
PPE
Economics ( 50-63 places)
Modern Languages
Music
Relevant subjects crucial.
Very good intakes
Drop of 1 A level Grade
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
BA degrees ( except for Mod. Languages & Film Studies)
Computer Science – if Maths or Computing offered - 60 more places
Architecture
Civil Engineering
Maths (need A in Maths)
Physics (need BB in Maths & Physics)
Geography, Archaeology & Palaeoecology
Psychology
Pharmacy
Music Technology
Dentistry, but only with A in Chemistry/ A*
Social Work (1 – vg interview)
Business Management
Theology
Drop of >1 A level grade
• Environmental Planning
• Law
• Accountancy
Summary
• In all cases, performance in relevant
subjects is vital
• Numbers getting in below & on minimum
entry grades are very small
• Granting of extra places allowed these
grade drops
• 4th AS level very important in borderline
decisions in August.
• Changed course offers.
Changes for 2014 Entry
• Accounting AAB from AAA
• Business Management ABB from AAB
• International Business with a language
ABB from AAB
• Law AAB from AAA.
2014 Changes (2)
•
•
•
•
•
•
New Courses:
Software Engineering
Maths & Finance
Physics & Finance
Food Science & Security
MPlan in European Planning
Applied A levels
• Equal consideration to general A levels eg.
Law or Accountancy: accept 3 Applied A
Levels
• Some exceptions where specific subject
requirements, eg Computer Science : ICT
not Applied ICT accepted.
• 3 courses limit of 1 Applied A level:
Medicine, Dentistry, Pharmacy.
UU 2012 Entry
• Strongly competitive environment
• Constrained by cap on full-time student
nos.
• Less flexibility in August as more students
staying in NI
• Using more grade offers
• Use of grade range offers
• Use of gathered fields
UU (2)
•
•
•
•
•
•
•
Less than 100 places in Clearing
In 4 main areas:
Built Environment
Applied Modern Languages at UUC
Computing & Engineering at Magee
Performing Arts at Magee.
Priority given to applicants over outsiders
in Clearing.
UU Admissions Criteria
• Predicted grades, but actual achievements more
important
• Subject requirements ( read small print)
• School reference
• Personal Statement ( more important now)
• Interview
• Portfolio
• Hpat Ulster - preparation course now available:
• www.careerservices.ie/
UU Part-Time Study
• Increasing interest in part-time study as a
genuine alternative to full-time.
• Flexibility – life/study balance
• Costs – significantly cheaper
• Competition for full-time places
• Increasing range of degrees available
• Application direct to Ulster
• No cap on numbers.
Flexible and Part-time Study
• Link from home page : www.ucas.com
• Open University: www.open.ac.uk/NI
Alternatives to University
• Level 4 Apprenticeships
• ICT apprenticeship programme
• School leaver programmes eg. Big 4
accountancy firms; M&S; Santander;
Tesco; Asda;
• Armed Forces
• Foundation degrees, HNDs ( fees)
• Employment.
Conclusion
• Majority of pupils in Ballyclare High School work
very hard to achieve best possible GCSE, ASand A-level results.
• Equally important to put similar effort into Higher
Education course research, in order to realise
full potential and make best use of
achievements.
• Onus is on students to undertake research, but
as much advice and guidance as they need are
available in the school careers department.

similar documents