Admission methods may change. What is the impact of studying in the UK?
Recently, the news that the British undergraduate admission system may usher in a reform has attracted a lot of attention. After the reform, the application method of “estimated score” that students were familiar with before will be abolished, and the application method of students will be required to apply to British universities with the final actual A-level score. Why did the UK change the “estimated score” method that has been used for many years? If the new policy of studying in the UK is finally implemented, what impact will it have on Chinese students?
No longer based on “estimated results”
In the UK, the A-level is usually two years, divided into AS and A2 grades. At the end of the AS grade, students take the AS-Level test. The teacher will give the A-level estimate according to the test results and the students’ daily performance. This estimated score has become an important basis for colleges and universities to judge whether to give students “conditional admission”. Students who get “conditional admission” can be finally officially admitted if their scores meet the score requirements of colleges and universities in the A-level examination of Grade A2.
However, the problem is that the estimation of results is sometimes inaccurate, and the current admission method is unfair to some students, which is also an important reason for this reform.
Although there is a strict procedure to standardize teachers’ estimation of results to ensure accuracy and fairness as much as possible, the estimation of results is still relatively subjective, and there is inevitable discrepancy with the final score of the student examination. Objectively, the estimated error makes some students with excellent grades miss the college they like, and “low” admission, which also affects the admission of colleges and universities.
According to the data of UCAS, the national university application agency in the United Kingdom, 79% of the 18-year-old students admitted in 2019 and predicted that they could get three As were overestimated and 8% were underestimated. It can be seen that the actual level of students is not exactly as predicted by the teacher.
“Highschools and universities have issued ‘conditional admission’ according to the estimated results. As a result, it is found that there are not many students who finally meet the school’s conditions, and it is not uncommon for the school to recruit enough people.” Sun Bo, director of Kai Tak Education UK Project, said.
The biggest difference between the previous reform of admission methods and the previous one is that British universities will issue offers after the A-level results are announced. It will become history to give offers according to the estimated results, so as to further improve the accuracy of college admission and improve educational fairness.
Reform “hold one body and activate the whole body”
In fact, there have been endless calls for reforming British undergraduate admissions before, but often in the end, one of the reasons is that it requires the cooperation of many departments. Industry analysts pointed out that if you want to promote reform, you still need to solve several major problems–
First, the official proposal at this stage is to carry out reform in England, but in the long run, the four places in the UK need to be unified and reformed. If there are four sets of admission rules in England with Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, it will undoubtedly bring more difficulties for students to apply, but it is not easy to coordinate the education system in the four places.
Second, in the admission of British universities, in addition to A-level scores, the overall quality of students will also be comprehensively assessed through personal statements, interviews, work collections and other ways. After the reform, the time of the school in the interview, additional examination and other links in admission will be relatively tense.
Sun Bo said that if colleges and universities issue admission notices to the A-level examination after mid-August, they will also face pressure because there are too many students who apply in a short period of time.
In the reform proposal drafted recently by UCAS, it is proposed that students can consider submitting applications after the A-level college entrance examination in May. In order to solve the problem of the problem of the tense time for subsequent interviews and additional examinations in colleges and universities, the opening time of the university will be postponed to January. However, if this is the case, the delay in the start of the school year may also lead to a delay in the graduation time, and even affect the job search and employment of students in the graduation year, which need to be specifically coordinated and balanced after the new policy is truly implemented.
The key is to prepare for the exam steadily.
Previously, British institutions had surveyed 1,500 university applicants. Although the current pre-admission system is acceptable, 56% of the respondents believe that universities should give admission results after receiving students’ A-level results.
If the reform progresses smoothly, such as the final A-level score in the past admission that did not meet the requirements of the school, the “conditional admission” was invalidated, but the offer qualification had been occupied by pre-admission will no longer exist. Objectively speaking, this may increase the probability of some Chinese students realizing their dreams in ideal colleges and universities to some extent.” After the A-level score is announced, the colleges and universities will be admitted again, and the obvious advantages of Chinese students in facing examinations, especially mathematics and other science subjects, will be highlighted, which will become an advantage for them in application. Sun Bo said, no matter how it changes, it is the most critical for students to take the exam and take every step steadily.
Data released by UCAS show that 24,430 Chinese students applied for admission to British undergraduates this year, an increase of nearly 5,000 from the same period last year, and an increase of 24%. In recent years, Britain has successively launched several important educational reforms, such as more recognized language examinations, some schools also accept Chinese college entrance examination results, etc. In terms of the overall trend, Britain has been opening its arms to international students. In Sun Bo’s view, the general trend of undergraduate admission reform in Britain is becoming more and more obvious. Even if it is slower, the initiative to adjust the admission policy that has been used for many years also reflects its determination to promote self-innovation of the education system.