Can any mature student offer tips on writing the Statement for UCAS?

Discussion in 'Chit Chat' started by girlygirl, 17 June 2007 Social URL.

  1. girlygirl

    girlygirl Silver Member

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    I have just decided to apply for BA(Hons)Performing Arts at my local college. I am to say the least a mature student. Now I need to complete the Statement part of the UCAS application form.

    How much should I write - how many words? How much detail will they need about my life up to now, and my past experience of singing, dance and the amateur dramatics I once loved (a million years ago....!)?

    I think a lot hinges on what you write in the Statement, and on how you present yourself to the college as a prospective student. I've wanted to go to uni for as long as I can remember. I have enough entry qualifications thanks to recent OU study(my A Levels are long 'out of date'!) and I know I would love to perform again, and learn all the new, technical theatre stuff.

    I just fear getting this Statement wrong, and jeopardising my chances of getting in. The deadline for UCAS applications is June 30! A typical last-minute dash - it's always like this with me - but if I do get in I will be a fresher in September, 2007. Then of course I'd have to worry about funding... lol.

    Any advice would be gratefully received.
     
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  3. Chika

    Chika Silver Member

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    In a personal statement I've always found it best just be be yourself. Let the uni know about you and your life, any relevant hobbies, interests and experience. you should let them know why you want to do the course and detail what you hope to gain from it.

    My uni tutor said that they look for people who have obviously looked at the course content. Eg so I would write someething like, I have noticed that you do a module on casting - I am really looking forward to learning the process from a professional perspective (or something like that).

    It also helps to call the college. Find out who the admissions tutor is and speak to them. Let them know who you are and ask them to look out for the application. You could even ask to have a look around the college. this will make you seem very enthusiastic and you will be known to the tutors before you start.

    Good luck and just be persuasive. I "blagged" my way onto the degree I am doing now with no relevant experience. I was just determined and phoned up the head of the course and spoke to her. I think she was impressed with my determination and as a result I'm happily doing my second degree. (My first was a three year party and I only really learned about nightclubs and kebabs :)

    Oh and as for finance. Call your local education authority and get them to send you the forms. I think the deadline that guarentees payment for september starts may have just gone but you can apply at any time. You can also submit the forms even before you have a firm offer from your college.

    Also don't forget that if you have children then you can apply for an additional grant which gives you extra money for childcare, school meals and travel. Also if you work pt you can still get tax credits. Hope that was useful! You will love uni!
     
  4. bondgirl

    bondgirl Member

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    Hi girly and well done on taking this step;)

    I applied for a place on a course that had just 80 places with over 500 applicants...I was so dreading the UCAS form.

    My tutor gave me a lil insight into Universities status on mature students...she told me if 2 students one a fresh 18/19 yr old with 3 A Levels(A-C) and one mature student with enough entry points went for the same place the University would look more favourably on the mature student as to get that far they have had to take up and complete study on their own accord whilst juggling, jobs, family life and other commitments...I don't know if this is true however I did get onto the course;)

    The personal statemtn I was advised should show your achievements...time management skills, dedication and how hungry you are for your chosen course....I was also told that I should be myself and include any obstacles I'd overcome to get this far. TBH I was told that the personal statement is a foot in the door but it would be the interview(if you have one) that will let you shine.

    Sorry if this has seemed a bit all over the place I'm out of practise:eek: and I too are going back in September(I had to leave my previous course due to ill health and now starting a Ba in Creative Writing & Identity)

    As for funding get in touch with your LEA(local Education Authority) the deadline was last week but the sooner you get it in the sooner they will sort it out(tbh if you do it within the next week it should be ready for you in Sept)

    Goodluck and just be yourself I'm sure you'll get in;)
     
  5. girlygirl

    girlygirl Silver Member

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    Thanks so much to both of you for replying.

    I will try to keep what I say brief and to the point, and to seem as enthusiastic as I can without waffling!

    I was on my way to uni, long ago, when singing work came my way. I fell in love, too, and eventually married that 'love'! I chucked my uni place to the four winds...

    Now my boys are grown, I am all alone and need to do some serious thinking about the rest of my life. It makes perfect sense to me to take a chance on this course.

    I won't be able to find an academic referee but I will ring the Admissions Dept. tomorrow to explain why and ask if I can put 'no reference required' on the UCAS online form. I'd no idea that the funding application also had a deadline and that said deadline had just gone... Have to get advice on that one from the Welfare Department or some such.

    Ideally I'd have wanted to go to uni ten years ago but I was still looking after my younger son - on my own - so it wasn't really an option.

    Perhaps this is the opening I've been waiting for. I'll give it my best shot, try to write a decent Statement, and hope to 'shine' at the interview.

    I'm sure I will love uni, given the chance. Life has been very difficult in recent years. This might be my chance to turn things around. Others have done so; why shouldn't I? Might as well look on the bright side!
     
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