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Applying to University: A Parents Guide The University of Edinburgh.

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1 Applying to University: A Parents Guide The University of Edinburgh

2 Why Go? Opens the door to a number of careers / professions Wide variety of employers now look for graduates in ANY subject Makes you more employable: improves core skills which employers value Higher average starting salaries and lifetime earnings for graduates

3 To Learn More Allows you to develop key skills which will make you more employable e.g communication skills, IT skills, organisational skills Gain self confidence Opportunity to try a completely new subject or to specialise in a particular area The University of Edinburgh

4 The Social Life Independence - chance to live away from home for first time Meet people from all over the world Opportunity to try new sports or gain new outside interests Students Association: run by students & organises events for students

5 Which Subject? The University of Edinburgh Wide range of subjects available: School related Vocational Something completely new Explore all options and choose something you enjoy!

6 Which University? Accommodation Academic, social and sports facilities Student support & welfare Consider University facilities: Scholarships or bursaries available? The University of Edinburgh

7 Admission Requirements? Check entrance requirements: Subject Specific requirements? Any changes if Highers taken over 2 sittings? General entrance requirements? Work experience? Additional tests? E.g. UKCAT (for Medicine) or LNAT (for Law) Interviews? If in doubt – check with University directly before applying. The University of Edinburgh

8 UCAS: Getting Started Check entrance requirements: Subject Specific? General requirements? Work experience? Two-sittings? Additional tests? E.g. UKCAT Interviews? If in doubt – check with University directly before applying. Entrance tests not part of the UCAS system and have different, sometimes earlier, deadlines.

9 The University of Edinburgh The UCAS System Application system for degree (and HNC/D) courses at any UK University or Higher Education college (including Art & Design and Nursing) One application for up to five courses (four for Dentistry, Medicine & Vet Medicine) Application to be completed by 15 January of the year of entry, except for: Dentistry, Medicine & Vet Medicine applications or applications to Oxford or Cambridge, where the deadline is 15 October the year before entry. Some Art & Design applications where deadline is 24 March year of entry or some Fine Art courses e.g. University of Edinburgh deadline is 1 December

10 The University of Edinburgh The UCAS Application Apply electronically via school using ucasapply system (paper applications not normally accepted) Information required: Personal Information – name, address, email etc Year of entry Educational history and qualifications Employment History Subject & University choices Personal Statement School Reference

11 The University of Edinburgh UCAS: The Next Step UCAS: distributes it to universities and monitors application. Students can monitor progress of application through UCAS Track The University Response: Unsuccessful Application Conditional Offer Unconditional Offer Up to five offers could be received

12 The University of Edinburgh The Students Decision Wait for all offers to come in - only have to respond once all offers have been made and not before Can hold onto a maximum of 2 conditional offers (firm or insurance) Much thought required before responding to offers – insurance choice should be realistic A student may also decline all offers received and enter UCAS extra or Clearing

13 The University of Edinburgh The Personal Statement

14 Personal Statement: Why is it important? Large numbers of students applying through UCAS – impossible to interview for all courses May be competing with other students from across UK for small number of places – personal statement could make the difference between a successful or unsuccessful application! Admissions staff want to see evidence that students are enthusiastic, well- prepared and have the right skills to do well at university. The University of Edinburgh

15 Getting Started: Subject Choice Explain why you want to study the courses you have applied for. Show commitment and motivation! Demonstrate a clear understanding of what the subject entails. (Especially when you have not studied the subject before). How do your current studies relate to your choices? The University of Edinburgh

16 Mechanical Engineering I have chosen a degree in Engineering because I enjoy working out problems and finding out how mechanical and electrical things work. Throughout school I have particularly enjoyed physics and maths and I feel these are important subjects I would like to explore more through Engineering. I am currently studying Maths to AH level which I am finding very enjoyable and which I hope will provide me with experience for University study. The University of Edinburgh

17 From a very early age I have been interested in the legal system of our country, as it is a vital part of our society. I have visited local and national law courts and have been intrigued by watching barristers and solicitors in action. Consequently I reached the decision that the degree I wish to study is Law based on research and visits to universities. I am in the process of organising placements at local law firms and at the Procurator Fiscal Service where I hope to gain further insight into the responsibilities of lawyers at various levels. Law

18 The University of Edinburgh History & Politics I want to combine History with Politics, because I find the political aspects of history especially interesting. Indeed as a career after University I would like to undertake work in the media involving the analysis of political events, and the analytical and research skills gained through studying for such a degree would be of great benefit in a career of this kind.

19 Work Experience & Core Skills Provide evidence that you understand the career implications of your choice. Detail any employment placements or work experience. What knowledge, skills or understanding did you gain from the experience? Emphasise the core skills you gained or developed. Avoid using lists! The University of Edinburgh

20 I have had a weekend job at a local kennels for three and a half years. In this time, the kennels have expanded and are now double the size and cater for other animals such as rabbits and guinea pigs. I am mainly involved in the feeding, cleaning and general care of the animals, but I also spend time dealing with the customers, something which I feel demonstrates my good communication skills and responsibility. Over the last three years I have spent nine weeks seeing practice at five different veterinary surgeries. I have seen a multitude of cases, from routine cat spays and canine parvovirus vaccinations, to more complex problems including a cat with an intussusception, a dog with Lupus and megaoesophagus and a bull suffering from light sensitisation. One of my weeks seeing practice was spent in Ireland. This was an especially interesting experience as it showed me how differently people view their animals over there. I am presently attending my local vets one afternoon a week. Whilst at one of the surgeries, I was allowed to watch an acupuncture clinic for cats and dogs with arthritis or other problems. Along with my visit to an equine hydrotherapy centre, I feel I gained an insight into some of the benefits of alternative veterinary care. This summer I spent a week on a dairy farm in Ayrshire. The hands-on experience with the cattle and sheep was fantastic and further increased my confidence with large animals, previously developed through my earlier horse riding experience. Besides helping with the milking, I was involved in, amongst other things, feeding calves, dosing sheep, dehorning calves and moving cattle. In addition to this, I have spent three weekends assisting with lambing at a smallholding in Cumbria with about 120 sheep. I recently participated in an afternoon's lesson in Falconry where I was taught the basics in handling and caring for birds of prey, an experience which I thoroughly enjoyed. The University of Edinburgh Work Experience (Vet Med)

21 The University of Edinburgh Work Experience (Medicine) Working with St Johns Ambulance for 2 years has provided me with challenging situations involving real casualties, requiring me to remain calm in a frenzied atmosphere. Friday night experiences such as treating assault victims or persuading an intoxicated pregnant teenager to attend hospital for medical attention have developed my interpersonal and first aid skills. Further teamwork in a residential home for the elderly over the past 15 months has increased my caring skills. Aiding residents and families with personal grief and acceptance of death, giving reassurance and ensuring personal dignity and confidentiality are fundamental skills which I have learned.

22 The University of Edinburgh Work Experience (General) My part time job as a waiter has provided me with the opportunity to meet and work with new people. As I have worked in the same job for two years, I have to help train new members of staff, which has helped my leadership skills. I really enjoy the contact with the public which is part of this job. Although this can be challenging, I feel it has given me more confidence and improved my communication skills.

23 Personal Qualities and Achievements Demonstrate that you are an all- round achiever with the ability to contribute to university life Describe any additional achievements or qualifications gained and identify positions of leadership or responsibility you have held. Relate your achievements to how they will contribute to your success on the course. The University of Edinburgh

24 During this past year at school I have taken on various responsibilities, all of which I feel have added to my skills. I am a buddy to the first years and every week I have to do their registration which has improved my public speaking skills as well as my inter-personal skills with those younger than me. I do paired reading with a younger pupil twice a week which I find very rewarding as I am able to watch him gain confidence in his reading. Finally, I am a co-editor of the school magazine. I am finding this to be quite challenging, especially to fit in with all my schoolwork, but it is proving to be very enjoyable and a test to my organisation abilities. The University of Edinburgh Extracurricular Activities/ Responsibilities

25 The University of Edinburgh Outside Interest (Sport) Playing rugby from a very early age has given me great self-motivation. I continue to play at a high standard and recently won an international tournament with my current club. I have also played for the district team. I also swim, play football and badminton. My sporting experiences have given me self-confidence and a desire to succeed at whatever I do. I really hope to continue to play sports while attending university and ideally would like to become involved in the University rugby club.

26 You can only write one personal statement for all 5 choices Dont just list achievements / skills Make sure it reads well (do a spell check!) Demonstrate that you are an all- round achiever with the ability to contribute to university life If possible relate your achievements / experiences/ courses studied back to your application – a focused and relevant statement is very effective. Personal Statement: Remember… The University of Edinburgh

27 Open Days The University of Edinburgh Friday 19 th June, Monday 7 th & Saturday 26 th September 2009 Booking required at: Any Questions? Monday 6 th & Saturday 25 th September 2010 Open Days The University of Edinburgh Booking required at:

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