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Admission procedures




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  1. Polling procedures

 

Students are admitted to British universities largely on the basis of their performance in the examinations for the General Certificate of Education at ordinary and advanced level. The selection procedure is rather complicated. It has been designed to combine as much freedom as possible tor the universities to choose the students they want with as much freedom as possible for students to choose the university they want. This was done by setting up in 1954 the Universities Central Council on Admissions (UCCA).

A student who wants to go to university usually applies tor admission before he takes his Advanced level examinations. First of all he must write to the Universities Central Council on Admissions and they send him a form which he has to complete. On this form he has to write down the names of six universities in order of preference. He may put down only two orthree names, stating that if not accepted by these universities he would be willing to go to any other. This form, together with an account of his out-of-school activities and references, one of which must be from the headteacher of his school, is then sent back to the UCCA.

The UCCA sends photocopies of the form and enclosures to the universities concerned. Each applicant is first considered by the university admission board. In some cases the board sends the applicant a refusal. This may happen, for example, if the board receives a form in which their university already has many candidates. If there are no reasons for immediate refusal, the university admission officer passes the candidate's papers on to the academic department concerned. One or two members of this departmentwill then look at the candidate's application: see what he says about himself, look at his marks at the ordinary level examinations, see what his headteacher and other referee say about him. On the basis of this, the department may make the candidate an offer (either a definite offer or a conditional one) or send him a definite rejection. A definite offer is usually made if the candidate has already two passes atAdvanced level.

The minimum requirement for admission is a pass in four subjects at Ordinary level and in two subjects at Advanced level, but most universities demand three passes at Advanced level.



When the Advanced level examination results come out in August, the university admissions sends him a definite offer. The candidate must accept or refuse within 72 hours.

 

(From Essential English for Foreign students by C.S. Eckersley)

* * *

Edward was not only king of England. He was duke of Aquitaine and as such ruled a French province that stretched from the Charente to the Pyrenees and at one time had constituted nearly half the area of France. Inherited from his great-grandmother, Henry ll's queen, much of it had been ceded in the past half century to the kings of France, as a result partly of war and partly of legal processes brought by their lawyers. But with its famous vineyards and export of wine and corn, what remained – known as the duchy of Gascony – was still one of the richest fiefs in Europe. Though nominally subject to the French king, for nearly all practical purposes it was an independent domain and Edward's rule so long as he could command the allegiance of its turbulent nobility and prosperous burghers. He had governed it as his father's viceroy in his youth and on his way home from the crusade had spent a winter in its capital, Bordeaux, settling its troubled affairs and internecine wars. But it was now twelve years since he had visited it. Having conquered Wales and restored order in London, he sailed from Dover for Calais in May 1286 with his queen, chancellor and a splendid train.



At Paris, on his way south, Edward did homage to the new seventeen-year-old king, his cousin Philip the Fair, receiving back his fief from his hands according to the rules of feudal tenure. He safeguarded his rights and the limitation of his allegiance by the non-committal phrase he had used while doing homage to the young king's father, Philip the Bold, after his own accession twelve years before: «My lord king, I become your man for all the lands I ought to hold of you according to the form of the peace made between our ancestors». For now, as then, he was resolved to offer no loophole to the cunning jurists of the parliament of Paris who were always trying to enlarge their master's rights by whittling down those of his feudatories. He even succeeded in extracting from his royal cousin a promise that no more encroachments on his territories should be made by the French courtsduring his life-time, even when their verdictwas against him.

(From The Age of Chivalry by Arthur Bryant)


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