Wallace say Yes to YASS

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Was it worthwhile to devote time to studying for an Open University course in the midst of preparing for “A” level examinations? According to Wallace’s first cohort of YASS students the answer is a definite yes. YASS stands for the Young Applicants in Schools and Colleges Scheme and it provides academically gifted post 16 students with an opportunity to study a range of undergraduate modules at first-year level.

Competition for highly competitive courses such as Medicine and Pharmacy is intense and the OU scheme offers modules which can really complement A2 study, strengthen UCAS application and prepare students for university life. The Wallace pupils Jordan Browne, Samantha Purse, Hannah Stewart and Julie Whitten have applied for Medicine, Pharmacy and Biomedical Sciences; they studied Molecules, medicines and drugs or Human Genetics and Health Issues.

Samantha noted that she would “recommend doing the module as the work really complemented the A2 course” whilst Hannah Stewart added that her chosen module on Human Genetics “raised interesting ethical and moral questions which I’m sure will be helpful for my interviews for admission to medical school.” Jordan commented on the very high quality of the study resources and the ease of going on-line “The OU offers really good back up for students and completing the module successfully is a real confidence boost”. All the pupils agreed that the courses were invaluable in helping them to manage time effectively and that they had provided a useful taster experience of tertiary level study.

Principal Deborah O’Hare said that she was delighted with the students’ success and hoped that they would be the first of many young people from Wallace to participate. She added that “Wallace aims to maximise the potential of all our young people and the Open University scheme represents one of our strategies for providing additional support for pupils. I am especially pleased to note that our students reported that much of the material covered was familiar to them due to extension activities designed by their own A2 teachers who are always striving to challenge and extend students.”

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Senco Heather Gracey added her congratulations observing “the students’ achievements really demonstrate their abilities to manage time effectively as the cohort contains both Music Honours students and an elite sportswoman in Julie Whitten who will be playing in the semi-final of the Schools’ Hockey Cup against Victoria College. Hopefully we will see yet more success for a student who is both gifted and talented”

Last modified: February 9, 2011