Poor A-Levels - 1st Class Degree, chance with big 4??


#1

As I wait for September and the next round of graduate applications to open, I am increasingly wondering whether infact there is much point in me applying at all!

At 6th form, I ended up coming out with the following A Levels - Maths ©, General Studies©, Physics (D) and Chemistry (E). I do have some extenuating circumstances however they were never reported to my 6th form at the time so I have no documentation as evidence. My AS Results, which i feel i could have possibly even bettered were A,B,C in Maths Chemistry and Physics.

I have also recently graduated with a 1st class degree from the Manchester Metropolitan University Business School, in Accounting and Finance and I am told that outside LSE, and the usual redbrick universities, that the course is held in quite high regard by most in the proffesion.

What I want to know is, do I have a good chance if i apply, or am i just wasting my time?

Thanks in advance


#2

I think it is definitely worth applying. A first is very good, and a first in accounting and finance is much more relevant to a job in accounting than your C in Maths or E in Chemistry. If you’re worried, I’d call HR to confirm that you won’t be automatically rejected because of your low A Level grades - but I wouldnt expect you would be.

Remember, there is no set list of universities that accounting firms recruit from (unlike IB) - you shouldn’t worry so much… start making your applications! Good luck!


#3

I have a friend who has no A-Levels at all (I think he did a BTEC or GNVQ). He did a foundation year at university and went on to get a 2:1 in chemical engineering, followed by an MSc with merit.

He’s recently had an interview with Accenture, who have similar entry requirements to the big 4 (if not more stringent), so you should definitely give it a go.


#4

It stands to reason. HR aren’t crazy… if you’ve proved yourself academically with a good grade for a solid degree at uni, they’ll be willing to overlook school results.

Reg - In which department does your friend work and how do they find it? I’ve heard some very mixed reports about [[Accenture]]… e.g. lots of travel… what are your thoughts?


#5

Your first definitely makes up for the A-Levels! Give it a shot!


#6

Yeah I’m with Jungle Boogie hear. A first class degree completely eclipses any A-level results you may or may not have achieved. With strong applications I feel you could probably sneak your way into the [[big 4]] accounting firms.


#7

I actually know a friend who just got a job with one of the Big 4 with A-Level results that didn’t meet the criteria but finished with a 2:1 at Uni and my friend got offered the job! She explained why she didn’t do as well as she would have liked in her A-Levels to the recruiters and they took this on board and progressed with her application. Think of reasons why you didn’t do as well as you’d have liked in your A-Levels and include this in your application form. I very much doubt they would ignore an application from someone with a 1st!


#8

Thanks for the input guys!

Definately gonna give it a crack now!

Any advice on how to best minimise the focus on the alevels in my application and maximise elsewhere?


#9

None really! Just explain in your extenuating circumstances section of the application form why you could have done better at A levels.