Can near-perfect A-Level grades make up for an average senior year? HEEEEEEEEEEEEEELP

<p>Hey,</p>

<p>I am not going to lie about this. I was never a very good student, in that I never did my best in high school. I was much more interested in questions that we did not cover in any way at school and spent a lot of my time figuring things about life in general. I observed human behaviour a lot and spent a lot of time pseudo-philosophising and writing fiction. Fact that I have ADD didn't help at all either, I suppose. </p>

<p>In spite of that, I was in the top 20-30 of a class of 200 (usually an average mark of ~80%) without doing much and I was happy with that. I didn't complete year 12, transferred to an IB school and re-transferred to an A-Level school, and not feeling challenged in either of the two schools, I decided to do my A-Levels on my own. </p>

<p>My question is as follows: is there any way for me to make this look "acceptable" if not, "good"? If I were to achieve A<em>A</em>AAA-AAAA in maths, physics, chemistry, french and perhaps english lit, would it be okay if I didn't do so well in my last high school year? I was thinking of writing a polite explanation in ~200 words to account for my haphazard last high school years.</p>

<p>Thanks</p>

<p>well i don't see too much wrong with it... so u had some rough grades, if you can prove that you're made of the right stuff then you're fine.</p>

<p>Now the right stuff... well thats a mystery. But what we can agree is that perfect A Levels can only help and get you closer. From what I've gathered, raw academics isn't the only thing @ MIT so maybe if you posted your books, philosophical ideas, psychological theories that would help. Perhaps consider starting a blog and discussing what all you've found? You'll quickly be able to beef up your application if you think about what you've done that you've enjoyed (as long as your comfortable with putting it on there).</p>

<p>It seems we are talking about more than just a few bad grades, but several bad years. A bad transcript (even with good test scores) may indicate a propensity to be slacker which is not a positive for admission at MIT. Even the best and the brightest admitted to MIT need to put a lot of hours into their work to succeed academically. You have to work hard just to get a passing grade. Not all classes at MIT, particularly during the first few years, are especially exciting, but you still need to develop a solid foundation before you can build on it with advanced courses. There may some strong skepticism based on your track record that you can really handle the expected workload if you already had trouble in high school. In any case, I believe A level results are released too late to have any impact on admission.</p>

<p>What do you do outside of the classes you have to take?</p>

<p>"Several bad years" is an overstatement. It was actually more like one bad year. </p>

<p>My "trouble" has more to do with what we were doing in high school, which was essentially preparing us to do well on the standardised exam, rather than actually learning things. Exam technique trumps understanding. :\
That's why I hated it, that's why I left. Lots of people stick with it even if they don't like it but I figure life's only this long and I don't want to subject myself to this ******** any longer.</p>

<p>"There may be strong skepticism based on your track record that you can really handle the...high school." </p>

<p>That is one of my concerns. But here's the deal: High school classes are really just preparation for the end-game, the a-level exam. So, shouldn't doing well on the <em>actual</em> exams not make up for it? In my opinion yes, but I suppose admitted students, alumni or school reps would know better.</p>

<p>I will have my A-Level grades in hand when applying. ;)</p>

<p>Outside the classes, I've set up an after-school thing to help elementary school kids learn to read and write English. It's a little hard, as I only have my mother and her friend to help me and there's what, 22 children? (haha) The other thing is they're all of different levels, so I had to separate them into groups. The long term aim is to get this running in a few other neighbouring villages and of course, getting some kind+patient teachers involved. I also have to figure out how to raise some money to buy more books. I have an idea in mind but I'm not sure if it's worth it. (organising a concert or better, not organising one, but pitching my plans to the people who're already organising a concert and convincing them to contribute!)</p>

<p>I also do a few math-y things but the meat of the work is on hold. I intend on getting the ball rolling in the coming months.</p>

<p>That's about it, yeah.</p>