Yesterday was the 1st of April, 2013.
It was April Fools’ Day.
But for the minority of us, it marks the end of the arduous month of local university admission for local GCE ‘A’ Level students.
I mentioned previously that I didn’t get very good results for my ‘A’ Levels. It was not good at all given my school’s standard. (By the calculation of the University Admission Score (UAS), I was totally below average. By 5 whole points. It meant that everyone’s average was As and Bs and mine was Bs and Cs. Even when I have calculated Chinese into my UAS score.) But after hearing stories about miracles happening, I still went ahead and started my preparation for university application.
(Those who are currently in JC, reading this and still have no idea what is the UAS, it is the same as your ranking points in your JCs, just that the UAS includes the Chinese grade and the PW grade. Those who are not familiar with the Singapore education system, the UAS is a score that is translated from the grades received for the ‘A’ Levels. A H2 subject with an A is equivalent to 20 points while a H1 subject with an A is equivalent to 10 points. To cut the long story short, for an ‘A’ Level Examination, there is a total of 3 H2 and 3 H1 subjects. And that is the most basic subject combination that a Singaporean student can have. So, the maximum UAS that one can get is 90, which is the perfect score.)
Why the need to prepare, many may ask.
Firstly, you have WAY TOO MANY choices to choose from, even with mediocre results like mine. I went to calculate the UAS based on the Indicative Grade Profile released for the AYA of 2012/2013. (Presuming that GP and PW is both a C grade.) And it was 74.75. So I had quite a few choices, like FoS, FoE (Engineering) and maybe Nursing or FASS (MT-related). I had more choices for NTU, where Sports Medicine and Education are offered. If you had better results than I did, you could even choose to take a double degree. Or a Major with another Minor. NTU only had 5 empty slots for you to fill in while NUS had 8. (That is for the year of 2013/2014 University Admission Exercise.) So, make full use of all the choices and DO NOT DEPEND ON LUCK. Under such circumstances, Lady Luck do not stand on your side. If you choose badly, you may end up school-less. (My unique vocabulary. It still makes sense.) Like the many other examples that are seen on forums. I did go and read the forums to compare my results with other people, along to read the suggestions that were offered. Interest is important, but if your results can’t make it, then interest doesn’t matter at all anymore.
Secondly, for the kiasu (Singlish term for being afraid to lose) group of us who can’t afford to lose the chance to enroll university and on top of that, have other talents, there is an option called the Discretionary Admission (NUS) or the Non-Academic Achievement (NAA)(NTU). (I only applied for these two universities. SMU’s courses didn’t interest me, SUTD’s courses are out of my league and SIM’s school fees are simply too expensive.) I was in the school shooting team and I think I did relatively well in it, though not THAT outstanding. (I did apply for the National Youth Team but sadly, I didn’t get in. I am thinking of applying for National Coach Accreditation Programme in June. or July. It depends.) The form for this option is complicated in the sense that you have to write essays. And it can be quite torturous. I skipped NUS’s essay since what I used to apply for DA was not related to the course that I wanted to enroll in.
Thirdly, if you apply early, you stand to receive your university acceptance letter early. I have a few classmates and friends who submitted their forms on the first week and they have already received their letters. I am still anxiously waiting for mine since I submitted my NUS form on the third week and the NTU form on the last week before the Good Friday holiday.
And above is an insight to the education system in Singapore.
Hopefully, I can enroll into a university soon.
I’m still hopeful.