Why do grades matter?

Grades Matter -Regardless of which Board exam you are taking – IB, IGCSE, A-Levels, Indian Boards – grades do matter and are a very important aspect of the application. The different types of grades universities require are:

  1. a) Transcripts– Most colleges will require students to submit a transcript – a document listing your academic qualifications and grades – for the last four years of school. So, remember, everything from 9th grade onwards counts!
  2. b) School Report– most college applications will also include a supplemental form called the Secondary School Report. It is generally completed by one of the counsellors at your school and is also known as the counsellor recommendation.
  3. c) Midyear & Final Reports– Colleges require a Final Report from your school. This is another application form that you will give to your school and they will complete and send directly to the college. The form requests your final grades in the 12th, as they were unavailable during application time. A college may also require a Mid-Year Report if you had still not taken your mid-semester exams in the 12th grade when sending your transcripts.

How do I apply to Oxford or Cambridge?

The application process involves 5 steps:

1) UCAS. You still need to send in a UCAS application but remember the UCAS deadlines for Oxbridge are earlier than for the rest of the universities. For all courses at the universities of Oxford and Cambridge, your UCAS application must reach UCAS by the 15th October, 6pm UK time. This includes your personal statement. The personal statement you write here will be the SAME one that goes to your other 4 UCAS choices at the later (Jan 15th) deadline, so once again the focus of your statement should be on your subject of interest and NOT the university.

2) Additional Forms. Cambridge asks applicants to complete an online Supplementary Application Questionnaire (SAQ) or Cambridge Online Preliminary Application (COPA) after submission of their UCAS application.

3) Exams, Tests and Written Work. You may also need to take a written test as part of your application, or perhaps submit written work. Each subject has its own application process so please research thoroughly before applying.

4) Interview. If you are shortlisted, then you will be invited for an interview. The interview is extremely rigorous and preparation begins even before you submit your application, including your previous readings or relevant work done.

5) Finally, the decision: When can I expect to hear the outcome?
If you had your interview within the first 3 weeks of December, you’ll hear back from Cambridge in early January. If you had your interview at Oxford during the first 2 weeks of December, you should hear from your colleges by the middle of January.

Be sure to check the deadlines for each of the steps mentioned above – for when you need to complete the written tests, schedule the interview, or inform the University of your decision.

What is the application process to undergraduate institutes in Canada?

There is no standardized application process to undergraduate institutes in Canada. Here is a basic outline of what a typical process will look like, but please visit the targeted universities’ websites directly for specific instructions and details.

1) The first step is to choose your course of study. It’s very important to first identify what EXACTLY it is that you wish to pursue – for example, are you looking to study Anthropology, Economics, Business Management or Mechanical Engineering?

2) Find the right colleges. Once you finalize your course, you then need to identify the appropriate colleges. This includes checking the application requirements for each school.

3) Register and apply. When applying to universities in Canada, generally you will be applying to each institution individually.

4) Submit application and documents by deadlines provided.

Why pursue a Master’s degree?

There are several benefits of pursuing a Master’s degree, but let’s focus on these top 4:

  1. Develop Skills Sets.The Master’s degree prepares you for graduate study at the Doctoral level, or expands your knowledge in your field, or allows you to acquire skills in new and recently developed technologies and methods.
  2. Enhance Future Prospects.It opens doors to a wide arena including academia, and across the public, private and non-profit sectors.
  3. Enhanced Salary. A Master’s degree for many is an investment in itself.
  4. Opportunity to Network. Universities provide an incredible platform for you to network with not only your classmates but also professors, other students on campus and alumni.

When it’s a right fit, a Master can provide you with the relevant skill sets and advancement you need to take your career and subject interest to the next level.

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