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A Parent’s Guide to Higher Education Kirsty Matthews: Head of Sixth Form.

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Presentation on theme: "A Parent’s Guide to Higher Education Kirsty Matthews: Head of Sixth Form."— Presentation transcript:

1 A Parent’s Guide to Higher Education Kirsty Matthews: Head of Sixth Form

2 Objectives After this presentation you will:  Have an overview of a variety of Higher Education routes  Have considered Higher Education costs and sources of funding  Understand basic UCAS (University and College Admissions Service) application processes, key dates and services  Know where to find out more detailed information about UCAS  Have insight into the importance of the applicant’s personal statement

3 Main options for getting a degree Full-time university courses (3 years +) – over 100 institutions in the UK. Foundation degrees (usually 2 years) – at universities and Further Education courses, including Exeter College and South Devon College. Distance learning (get a job plus study at your own pace, module by module) – mainly through the Open University. Employer-sponsored degrees – some organisations will pay for their employees to complete university courses

4 How much does HE cost? From September 2012, universities will be able to charge up to £9000 per year in tuition fees. This does not include living costs such as accommodation, food, textbooks and social life. The following example is based on estimates by Exeter University.

5 One year at university... £9000 tuition fees £4500room in catered hall of residence £300books/equipment £900food & drink, toiletries, haircuts £190clubs, societies, sports £200clothing £150TV licence £150travelling £300telephone, internet £1085socialising! Total = £16775

6 However... Tuition fees do not have to be paid upfront Students take out a tuition fee loan, to cover the full yearly amount They only pay this back once they are in employment and earning over £21000* per year (*subject to parliament approval) There are also loans available for living costs (amounts depend on parental income) Grants are also available for some students- these do not need to be repaid. Universities may give out grants, bursaries and scholarships – check each university website.

7 South Dartmoor Community College Guide to UCAS

8 The role of UCAS  UCAS exists to bring clarity and cohesion to the process of applying for a full-time UK HE course  UCAS is also an important source of factual information about choosing what and where to study

9 Electronic research UCAS website can help with: Stamford Test Course Search  Entry Profiles  Entry Requirements  Bursary and scholarship comparator Links to HE websites

10 Entry Profiles  Provide clear, up to date information about undergraduate courses  Same course title (e.g. nursing) – different experience  Invaluable source of information about entry requirements  Bursary and scholarship comparator

11 Key features of admissions scheme Number of choices Every applicant may make up to five choices for standard registration fee of £21.00 Some subject restrictions: Dentistry, Medicine or Veterinary - max. 4 choices

12 Key features of admissions scheme When to apply 1 September- Annual opening date for applications 15 October-Closing date for Oxbridge/Dentistry Medicine & Veterinary 15 January-Advisory closing date for UK students 24 March-Closing date for some Art and Design Courses

13 Apply

14 Key features of admissions scheme University and college decisions Admissions tutors can make one of three decisions: Conditional Offer Unconditional Offer Unsuccessful

15 Key features of admissions scheme Conditional offers Expressed in: UCAS Tariff points or grades e.g. BCC in A levels, or MPP in BTEC ND or a combination of both (e.g. 260 points, including a B in Mathematics)

16 Key features of admissions scheme Replying to offers A maximum of two offers may be held after all final decisions have been made Applicant can make one of three replies: F =firm acceptance I=insurance acceptance D=decline

17 Key features of admissions scheme If an applicant has no offers… Two further stages to gain a place: UCAS Extra (mid-March – end of June) Clearing (mid-August onwards, for A level students)

18 Key features of admissions scheme Track  Enables students to follow the progress of their applications (access via password)  Quickest way to find out about new offers  Students can reply to offers online


20 Key feature of admissions system Confirmation 1.Exam results are issued (e.g. A levels mid- August, BTEC ND in July) 2.Admissions staff check if applicant has matched the conditions of the offer 3.If yes, the student will be sent an official confirmation of their place Time to celebrate!!

21 The personal statement The only part of the application where applicants have the freedom to tell the HE selector: all about themselves in their own words compete with other applicants

22 The personal statement  Extra evidence to help HE selectors make decisions … … and hence make an offer  Important for both selecting and recruiting courses  Assume that admissions tutors will read it  In many cases it will substitute for an interview

23 The personal statement  Refer to proposed career  Indicate relevant experience, work, skills and interests – emphasis on what they have got out of the experience  List achievement of all kinds not listed as qualifications eg sports, Duke of Edinburgh, adventure activities,HE summer school,Young Enterprise  Can optionally give unit information

24 Support resources for students and parents South Dartmoor Community College Help Pack, Summer 2011. Available via website and moodle 6 th form general resources page 6 th form tutors, deputy head of 6 th form, head of 6 th form and leader of post 16 entitlement Connexions and careers library UCAS website: and university University open days University admissions departments HE notice board at Place House Be wary of website offering help with personal statements! UCAS run sophisticated software to detect plaigarism.

25 Questions

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