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 Post subject: Latin
PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2012 5:42 pm 
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Joined: Wed Jan 14, 2009 10:17 pm
Posts: 46
Can any one advice me if Latin is a useful subject to be offered for GCSE. Does it have any additional value at University Entry?


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 Post subject: Re: Latin
PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2012 5:44 pm 
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Joined: Fri Oct 12, 2007 12:42 pm
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Location: Chelmsford and pleased
Latin is considered to be one of the harder GCSE subjects as so few schools offer it. Not sure if it makes any difference to applications or has any kudos attached to it. Probably helps if DC likes Latin.


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 Post subject: Re: Latin
PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2012 6:07 pm 
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It doesn't have any particular value as otherwise it would discriminate against students whose schools do not even offer it.


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 Post subject: Re: Latin
PostPosted: Sat Feb 04, 2012 7:53 pm 
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I think it's pretty well-regarded as academically quite rigorous. It's examined terminally rather than as modules (though of course all GCSEs wil be like this soon); DD is about to sit it and seems to have had quite a heavy workload learning set texts. I don't think universities really care what your GCSEs are in, but I would stick my neck out and say it wouldn't hurt to have Latin, though my hunch is that getting a top grade might be a bit harder than in some things. So if it's Oxbridge, where they seem to care about A to A* ratios, or Birmingham medical school where they only like a straight run of A*s, that might be relevant.


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 Post subject: Re: Latin
PostPosted: Wed Feb 08, 2012 4:37 pm 
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I don't think it gives you an advantage as such.. but if your DC likes it, and perhaps particularly if they want to do English or languages or medieval history or history of art, it is another good plank for those disciplines. It seems to me that unis don't look that closely at subjects but that if there is a natural synergy you can write about it in your p.s. and actually that's a good thing. And after all, it's also very useful for medicine, biology... and classics!
My dd2 is not a natural linguist but is so far enjoying Latin (year 10) even if it hard sometimes. and DD1 regrets doing RE instead but that was partly getting a terrible course.


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 Post subject: Re: Latin
PostPosted: Wed Feb 08, 2012 11:34 pm 
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Joined: Thu Dec 18, 2008 10:12 am
Posts: 3758
Location: Berkshire
I'm not 100% sure that Latin is any more difficult than any other GCSE - unless it has changed since I did my O'Level - all those seen translations and Pliny - a matter of learning by rote. I would also agree that it can't be expected as there are many schools that don't offer it. If my child liked it ( and mine didn't) I would go for it, otherwise I wouldn't feel terribly bothered about it.


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 Post subject: Re: Latin
PostPosted: Thu Feb 09, 2012 10:25 am 
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Joined: Thu Dec 16, 2010 5:53 pm
Posts: 79
Latin is always worth studying just for its intrinsic value, as it shows that you can learn something. It makes you apply your brains, knuckle down and actually work. Always a good thing to show that you can do that, even if you never learn it again. Why else do so many top schools do it? If your child shows any inclination to do it, and has the opportunity, seize it in both hands.


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 Post subject: Re: Latin
PostPosted: Thu Feb 09, 2012 1:17 pm 
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Posts: 450
Latin combines a mix of skills: linguistic, literary and logical. The language learnt is invaluable in supporting understanding of Romance languages, English and sciences. My DD is able to use her Latin to understand terminology in her most hated subject - science. The literature papers still require genuine literary criticism - the analysis skills learnt in this are transferable to other areas of life. The structure of Latin requires that you "work out" your translations logically. And if your DC is offered the history paper, then there's some history to be learnt there too (but I don't know how that paper works nowadays). But you've got to want to do it...!


Last edited by Y on Fri Mar 02, 2012 2:26 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Latin
PostPosted: Fri Mar 02, 2012 9:32 am 
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Joined: Thu Dec 16, 2010 5:53 pm
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Do Latin, if for no other reason than that it instills a habit of learning and learning well. It is indeed rigorous, but there must be a reason that selective schools choose to teach it and or Greek. Would do absolutely no harm, probably good.


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 Post subject: Re: Latin
PostPosted: Sat Mar 03, 2012 12:40 am 
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Location: Berkshire
Lots of learning by rote - if you like that sort of thing :D


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