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Social Science Diploma Image

Online ABID in Social Science

get into UK university from outside the UK

All you need to get into UK Universities to study a degree in Social Science

We are here to help you fulfil your potential and start you on the pathway to your dream career.

Our Advanced British International Diploma in Social Science equips you with the required subject knowledge in Psychology and Criminology, as well as the academic skills needed to apply for a degree in the Social Sciences. These include Psychology, Sociology, Anthropology, Criminology, Politics and Economics.

This can lead to a career working in a wide variety of sectors such as education, the health sector, journalism, research, or public relations.

We have 30 years experience of delivering online education and through our existing Access to HE Diplomas. Over 1500 of our students per year gain places in over 140 UK Universities.

40% off£3000.00 (from £226.83 a month)
reduced from £5000.00

What are they?

The Advanced British International Diploma, or ABID, is designed as an affordable route into University (Higher Education) Degree for students who reside outside the UK and don't already have the necessary qualifications. The course is delivered in English. It is equivalent to other courses studied by students in the UK to gain entry to our universities. The majority of the assessment is through coursework along with some online exams. Your tutor will provide detailed feedback on your progress.

Are they accredited?

Ascentis LogoEcctis Logo
Our Advanced British International Diplomas are Accredited and Certificated by Ascentis, one of the UK's leading and largest Awarding Organisations. Our ABIDs have been independently evaluated and benchmarked by Ecctis (formerly NARIC) and found to be comparable to RQF Level 3 (the level required for entry to UK universities).

How do I study?

The course is studied entirely online. You work at your own pace. We expect the course to take 8 months to a year to complete depending on how much time you have available to study. Your friendly subject-specialist qualified personal tutor supports your learning with one-to-one tutorials, email, WhatsApp and video calls and helps you with any problems or concerns.

After the course

The Courses have specifically been designed to meet UK University entry requirements and prepare you for undergraduate study. We have 30 years of experience providing courses used for access to UK Universities by distance learning. Our students have gone on to study degrees at over 140. We can advise you on courses available and also help with your UCAS Application.

Ecctis LogoWhat is Ecctis benchmarking?

Ecctis benchmarking is the standard used by UK universities to verify the level of an international qualification. The ABID has been independently evaluated and benchmarked by Ecctis and can be found on the Ecctis Qualification Benchmarking Register. Ecctis provides official UK national agency services for education on behalf of the UK Government.

ENIC LogoFollowing the UK's departure from the European Union, UK NARIC became UK ENIC, managed by Ecctis, with Qualification Benchmarking services delivered by Ecctis.

When can I start?

You can start when it suits you, any time of year: just like studying with us, our enrolments are flexible too.

What are the entry requirements?

You must be resident outside the UK to study this Course.

There is no requirement to travel to the UK to study or complete the qualification.

Full Entry Requirement details are provided on the Entry Tab above.

How do I learn?

For every Subject you study you will be given access to its tailored learning materials: because they are written by us, you can be sure that they will teach you what you need to succeed on your assessments. They are more than a textbook - they guide you through your learning and support you so that you're fully prepared for each assessment. You will complete tasks, answer questions (with model answers that you can check), and will be given all the tools needed to achieve the highest grades possible.

How am I assessed?

You are assessed through tutor-assessed coursework throughout your Diploma, including two exams that will be conducted as virtual meetings. Our assessments have been both internally and externally verified, meaning that they have been checked to make sure they are consistent, fair and robust. Importantly, they give everybody the same opportunities to succeed. Our internal verification process is rigorous and thorough, ensuring that every tutor is marking, grading and giving formative and developmental feedback in line with our exacting standards.

How long will it take?

Because our Advanced British International Diplomas fit into your life rather than the other way around, you can decide how long you'd like to study your Diploma for. On average an Advanced British International Diploma takes 9 to 12 months, but you can complete in 6 months or study for longer if you wish to.

When can I complete?

When you complete is up to you. The only deadlines that are in place are those set by yourself, and are usually based on when you aim to start university. To start university in September you would aim for June moderation; to start university in February/March you would aim for November moderation.

What are my future prospects?

An Advanced British International Diploma opens doors for every student. Whether you decide to use it to gain entry to university or not, it will improve your career prospects. You gain so much by studying an Advanced British International Diploma online: it teaches you skills that will make you stand out. From organisational skills and time management, to the ability to self-direct and research independently - you will be capable of things you hadn't previously thought possible.

ABID in Psychology and Criminology

Subjects studied:
  1. ABID Academic Skills (5%)
  2. ABID Psychology (60%)
  3. ABID Criminology (35%)
You study 100% in total.

Subject Set: ABID Academic Skills
Unit: Interview and Application Skills
Level 3
Unit: Writing for Academic Purposes
Level 3
ABID Academic Skills Totals
Subject Set: ABID Psychology
Unit: Approaches in Psychology
Level 3
Unit: Psychological Perspectives and Behaviour (Ex)
Level 3
Unit: Research Methods in Psychology
Level 3
Unit: Memory
Level 3
Unit: Defining, Classifying, Explaining and Treating Psychological Disorders
Level 3
Unit: Cognitive Development
Level 3
Unit: Child Development
Level 3
Unit: Experimental Research in Psychology
Level 3
ABID Psychology Totals
Subject Set: ABID Criminology
Unit: Introduction to Criminology
Level 3
Unit: Theories and Perspectives in Criminology (Ex)
Level 3
Unit: Contemporary Issues in Criminology
Level 3
Unit: Forensic Science and Crime Scene Investigation
Level 3
ABID Criminology Totals

Fee Calculator

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The most flexible fees

Easy to manage flexible instalments. Payment holidays. No tie-ins or credit agreements. Great value. If the course is not for you, pay no more. If you leave & return, fees paid previously are still covered. More details on our Fees Page.

40% off£3000.00 (from £226.83 a month)
reduced from £5000.00

Funding your course

  • This course is not eligible for Advanced Learner Loans.
  • This course is not eligible for Enhanced Learning Credits (ELC) funding.

The majority of our students fund themselves using our easy payment options. Some secure funding through their employers and a few manage to get some help from local charities. We cannot provide advice on funding but we do have a Grants & Funding page which you may find useful.

If you are not funding your course yourself

Please ensure that you make us aware of this when you apply so that we can advise you & make any necessary arrangements with the funder to cover your course costs.

If you have already purchased your course elsewhere

  • The fees and details on this page apply only if you purchase your Course directly from DistanceLearningCentre.com.
  • If you have purchased your course from another web site, they will have already informed you about their Terms & Conditions and payments.
  • They will also have informed us that you will be signing up for a course with us so we will be able to adjust the finances on your account accordingly once you have set up your course.
  • You will not need to pay the Enrolment Fee.

Payment methods

The normal method of payment is online with a Credit or Debit Card. We accept all major cards.

If there are genuine reasons why you cannot pay online, you will need to contact us to discuss whether there are other feasible options available such as bank transfer or Standing Order.

The support that our students receive is central to who we are and the service that we deliver.

Your tutor

Your tutor is both your personal support and your subject specialist teacher. They were chosen for their expert subject knowledge and qualifications, and for their skills in supporting and motivating adults who may have been out of education for some time. They are there to support you and guide your studies, and you will be in regular contact over email, WhatsApp and virtual meetings. Because they mark your assessments, they know how to help you to improve, develop and advance as you progress through the course.

Their role evolves over the course of your studies as your needs change. Initially you will speak to your tutor every week so you can get to know each other and settle into studying. As you progress through the course the support that you want from your tutor may change: one week you may want to talk about study skills, and the next about the ethics of research. Your tutor is there to make sure that your time with us is as successful and enjoyable as possible.

Student Services

Our Student Services team are here for you from your first enquiry and throughout your course. From clarifying university entry requirements to finding the course that is right for you, Student Services are here for everybody - past, present and prospective students alike.

UCAS Application

UCAS is the application system used for applying to university in the UK. They have guidance for international students and we are also here to support you throughout the application process.

For many, making the UCAS application is one of the most important moments arising from the course, and we support you throughout the process. Our strong relationships with universities mean that we liaise with them to ensure that you are always given the most relevant and up-to-date advice, and we keep you abreast of relevant information from UCAS.

From the first stage of your application, to any your interviews you may have, and accepting a place - we are there with you every step of the way. We will work with you to plan and draft your personal statement, will guide you through every step of applying through UCAS, and will check every single application, personal statement and reference before they are submitted. We work to ensure that every application is the best it can be.

Additional Support

Learning Support - support if you have declared a disability. They provide advice and guidance and signpost you to help and resources which can help with your studies.

Student Support - supporting you if you are having problems with your studies. This may be due to a wide range of factors, personal, financial, confidence, changed circumstances etc. Generally, tutors will refer you to this section if they feel that you will benefit from some extra help or advice.

Peer Support

We have a dynamic private Facebook community over 2000 students for you to join and if you want to raise points with staff this can be done via the Student Action Group.


We make our courses suit you and your life: if your circumstances or priorities change then your course can too. We are here to help you achieve, and so taking a study break, changing your payment date, extending or shortening your study period (target completion date) is always possible.

Technical Support

From accessing learning materials to uploading documents, if you need any technical support during your studies our Technical Department is there for you.

Finance Department

Should you need any help or advice about fees, payment options, or there are changes to your circumstances the Finance Department is there for you.

ABID Entry Requirements

In order to apply successfully:

    1. We may be able to accept your existing English qualification as evidence of the required standard. If you do hold a qualification in this subject please contact us to discuss whether it meets the required standard.
    2. Non-English-speaking countries. You will need to hold an IELTS (International English Language Testing System) at Level 5.0 or above; or a PTE Academic Qualification in English with a score of 29 or above. Additionally we will accept a score between 70 and 80 for the Duolingo English proficiency test.
      • If you already have IELTS, PTE or Duolingo at the required level, you will be required to upload a copy of your Certificate with your Application. This must have been completed within the last 2 years.
      • If you do not have IELTS, PTE or Duolingo at the required level, find out more about how to get them >>>
    3. English-speaking countries. If you are from an English-speaking country, you may not need IELTS/PTE. We use the same list to define English-speaking as used by the UK Government for people applying for a Student Visa. The list of countries can be found here: List of English-speaking countries.
  1. You will also have a writing task, a short interview and a diagnostic invigilated test in Mathematics with us. The Mathematics test includes: mental arithmetic, using graphs and measures, and problem solving.

    ABID Screening

    This is a 3 stage screening process, comprising; a piece of writing, an interview with a tutor and a Mathematics Test

    Before beginning your studies you will be allocated a tutor who will assess your suitability for the ABID course. This process will help us to check that your Maths and English skills are at the right level to be able to access the ABID course. The screening process should take no more than 1 week.

    The process will be in three stages:

    1. A piece of writing about yourself, your qualifications, your plans to apply to study in the UK and the entry requirements for this.
    2. An interview with the tutor to discuss your qualification and progression routes (approximately 30 minutes).
    3. A 30 minute tutor observed / invigilated maths test (calculator allowed).
    For the 1st stage, you will need to upload your work to your Student Account at least 24 hours prior to the virtual meeting. The 2nd and 3rd stages will take places as a 1-hour virtual meeting which will be arranged with you in advance by the tutor.

    After assessing your performance in these tasks your tutor will make a recommendation to our Student Services for either:

    1. Progression onto the ABID Diploma with a start date for your course, or
    2. Further study to get you ready for progression onto ABID. We have Courses we can recommend to support you in Maths and/or English so that you can then progress onto the ABID Diploma.

University Entry Requirements

In addition to your Advanced British International Diploma, some universities will also require other qualifications and evidence of study in order to offer you a place. These will be detailed in the entry requirements for the particular course at the university you wish to apply for.

  • Universities will usually require IELTS or PTEs for entry, if applicable (see above). The IELTS / PTE / Duolingo scores are likely to be higher for university entry than they are for ABID. However, the English skills that you will develop by completing your Diploma with us will prepare you well if your test needs to be retaken.
  • If you already hold qualifications that were studied outside the UK, your university may wish to see a Statement of Comparability to check that the qualifications you have meet their entry requirements. These can be obtained by contacting UK ENIC (formerly known as UK NARIC) at enic.org.uk.
  • If you do not already hold the required qualifications, we provide a range of UK qualifications, which can be studied online from outside the UK, to provide you with the qualifications you need to fulfil the university entry requirements. These are: IGCSEs, Functional Skills and Progression Awards. We can advise which would be most suitable for you.

Develop your skills ready for university

In addition to the in depth, detailed and subject-specialist knowledge you gain from your course, the ABID enables you to develop a range of skills which are beneficial for University study and career development, enhancing your employability and promotion opportunities.

Development of:

  • Communication skills in English.
  • Cognitive skills such as problem solving, decision making and critical thinking.
  • Academic skills such as researching, referencing and presenting your ideas effectively.
  • Transferrable skills such as resilience, time management, organisation, self-motivation and confidence.

Our reputation with UK Universities

DistanceLearningCentre.com enables around 1500 students a year to gain places at over 140 UK Universities through our well-established Access to Higher Education Diplomas.

As a result, we enjoy an excellent reputation for the quality of our courses and we are regularly recommended by universities to students enquiring about degrees who do not yet have the qualifications needed to gain a place. This close relationship also means that we can ensure the content of all our courses fits closely with university entry requirements.

Benchmarked by ECCTIS

Ecctis LogoAll our ABID Qualifications have been benchmarked by ECCTIS and found to be comparable to RQF Level 3 (the level required for entry to UK universities). Ecctis provides official UK national agency services for education on behalf of the UK Government.

Ecctis benchmarking is the standard used by UK universities to verify the level of an international qualification. The ABID can be found on the Ecctis Qualification Benchmarking Register.

ENIC LogoFollowing the UK's departure from the European Union, UK NARIC became UK ENIC, managed by Ecctis, with Qualification Benchmarking services delivered by Ecctis.

UK Universities and ABID

We have approached a large number of UK Universities about the Advanced British International Diploma (ABID) and received very positive responses in terms of their willingness to accept it as a valid entry route onto their degree programmes.

All except a couple have confirmed that they will consider applications from students studying an ABID on a case-by-case basis. Some have specifically arranged to work with us as ABID Partners. If you study an ABID with us, not only will we support you with your UCAS Application but we will also advise with regards to which universities would be suitable for what you wish to study and we will ensure that they are fully up-to-date with everything they may need to know about ABID.

ABID Partner Universities

University of West England Logo

University of Plymouth Logo

University of Chichester Logo



The Diploma is student-centred and is designed to encourage you to develop transferable skills in critical, reflective and ethical thinking, self-directed, confident independent learning, in both personal and academic development and in employability. A major feature of the programme is that it allows you to use a flexible approach to learning: through distance learning, you have to develop skills to enable you to take responsibility for your own learning, and develop time-management and high-level research skills.

Knowledge & Skills

The structure of each ABID Course is designed to provide you with subject knowledge which we know is most relevant to the degree you are aiming for and chosen through experience and consultation to find out what Universities most want to see.

We also ensure that there are opportunities to develop key transferable skills such as problem solving and verbal reasoning.

Working through the course

Rather than studying several Subjects at the same time, you work through the course subject by subject. From many years of providing online learning, we have found that this approach enables you to achieve better results than studying several Subjects at once.

Each Diploma is split into:

  • Academic Skills
    • You study this Subject first and it is not subject specific.
    • This Subject helps you to learn the skills you require to succesfully progress on the rest of course.
    • It also supports you with your UCAS Application for University.
    • This Subject is made up of 2 Units.
    • It makes up 5% of the final mark.
  • Two or more specialist Subjects
    • Within each Subject you are supported by a qualified tutor who has a degree relevant to that subject.
    • Each Subject is made up of a number of Units.
    • Each Unit is studied one at a time.
    • The weighting of Subjects and Units varies according to which ABID you study.
    • These specialist Subjects make up the remaining 95%.

Learning materials

The Course Learning Materials include Self-Assessment Questions (SAQs) and activities. You will be required to upload your SAQs, to demonstrate your learning, before you can start the formal Assessment for the Unit.

The Learning Materials and Assessments (pdf files) for each Unit are password protected and the passwords will be provided for you by your tutor as you work through your studies.

ABID Certificate

Your Certificate, awarded by Ascentis at the end of your Course, will show a Mark for each Unit which makes up the final Mark/Percentage for the whole qualification.

Whilst you do not have to study or pass every Unit to pass the Diploma, Units which are not studied will show as 0% against the Unit on your final Certificate.

How are ABID Courses assessed?

As you complete each Unit, you will be given Assessments to complete. These often take the form of a practical report, tutor-assessed questions or an essay. These are used by your tutor to assess your learning and recommend a Mark for the Unit.

Once you have completed an Assessment, you upload it to your Student Account. Your tutor will provide you with feedback on your work, by completing and uploading a Mark Sheet to your Student Account. Marks for Units remain a recommendation by the tutor (and can therefore change), until work is Externally Moderated by the Awarding Organisation, at which point it can be formally Awarded.

Examinations and Tutor Observed Assessments

HEI's like to see that students from ABID Courses have had experience of traditional examinations and assessments, which have been observed by your tutor. This will generally be completed through a virtual meeting. These examinations are free, but you will need to ensure that you have either a PC, laptop, or Tablet with a microphone and a forward-facing camera, so that your tutor will be able to observe you while you complete your examination.

At least two Units will be assessed through examination-type questions, though all the subjects will be assessed directly by your tutor throughout the course, and then be given a specific time limit within which you will have to complete the assessment and upload it to your Student Account to stay on course for your Target Completion and Moderation date.

You will take the examination observed by your tutor via virtual meeting (the time and date for these will be negotiated between yourself and your tutors). All our exams are 'closed book' where you will not be able to bring any materials into the examination with you. You will complete these examinations as you finish the associated Unit. Your tutor will advise you on exactly how the examinations work during your tutorials. There are two policy documents associated with the tutor observed assessments:

  1.   DLC Student Contact Policy
  2.   Extenuating Circumstances Form

The Student Contact Policy explains how your contact with your tutor will work and also how the observed assessments will be completed. The Extenuating Circumstances form will need to be completed if for any reason you have arranged a date with you tutor for either a resubmission of your work or a tutor observed assessment and you are unable to complete this on the date and time arranged.


The final mark for an ABID Course is given as a Mark (percentage), and this can also be expressed as a Grade:

  • A - 70%+
  • B - 60 to 69%
  • C - 50 to 59%
  • D - 40 to 49%
  • N - (Narrow Fail) 35 to 39%
  • F - (Fail) less than 34%

Each Unit Assessment you complete will be given a percentage Mark, and these are used to contribute to your final percentage. Different Assessments carry different weighting and so contribute different scores to your final result.

In each Assessment you will need to meet all of the Assessment Criteria. Each Assessment is marked against 3 Performance Descriptors. A percentage is given against each of these and an average taken to give the percentage score for the Assessment. The Descriptors are:

  1. Knowledge and Understanding of the Subject
  2. Application of Knowledge and Skills
  3. Analysis, Synthesis and Evaluation
Deductions are made from the overall final percentage for work which is submitted late or does not meet all of the Assessment Criteria. Where work does not meet all of the Assessment Criteria, an opportunity is given to resubmit the work.

Marking Example

Within the Subject Biology there are several Units with different weightings. This example picks 2 of these Units and assumes that all Assessment Criteria have been met:

  1. Introduction to Cell Biology - weighted as 5% towards your total Mark for the Diploma
    1. Knowledge and Understanding of the Subject - 64%
    2. Application of Knowledge and Skills - 47%
    3. Analysis, Synthesis and Evaluation - 58%
    • Overall Mark for the Assessment = (64 + 47 + 58) / 3 = 56%
    • Contribution to overall percentage for the Diploma = (56 / 100) * 5 = 2.8%
  2. Practical Investigation (Biology) - weighted as 15% towards your total Mark for the Diploma
    1. Knowledge and Understanding of the Subject - 68%
    2. Application of Knowledge and Skills - 72%
    3. Analysis, Synthesis and Evaluation - 64%
    • Overall Mark for the Assessment = (68 + 72 + 64) / 3 = 68%
    • Contribution to overall percentage for the Diploma = (68 / 100) * 15 = 10.2%

Meeting the Assessment Criteria

It is expected that you will make every effort to meet the Assessment Criteria for a Unit and you are required to complete a checklist which helps you to check you have completed everything you need to for each Unit. However, if you fail to meet one or more of the criteria, a deduction will be made from your Mark and you will be encouraged to resubmit your work.

Your tutor will give you guidance about any improvements that are necessary to meet the Assessment Criteria and when you resubmit your work it will be re-marked and the deduction removed if all the Assessment Criteria are met.


ABID Courses are moderated externally by the Awarding Body to ensure consistent quality. Moderation takes place twice a year so when you complete the course, you will have to wait until the next moderation before the request for certification can be sent to the Awarding Body. However, should you have concerns that your Diploma may not be certificated in time for entry onto your selected course in Higher Education, we can provide evidence for you to give to the admissions tutor.

Laptop or Computer

Due to the academic nature and depth of this course you will not be able to study it entirely on a Mobile Phone or Tablet.

Check university entry requirements

It is important to check the entry requirements for your chosen universities as these will help you decide if you need any of the qualifications below. We are also very happy to advise you to ensure that you have what you need.

UK ENIC (formerly UK NARIC) Statement of Comparability

If you already hold qualifications that were studied outside the UK, your university may wish to see a Statement of Comparability to check that the qualifications you have meet their entry requirements. You can get a statement from UK ENIC, who can be contacted through enic.org.uk.

Other Qualifications

In addition to an Advanced British International Diploma, the University where you wish to study may also require additional (lower level) qualifications. These may be covered through a Staement of Comparability (above) but you may also need further recognised qualifications. We will advise you about this as it will be picked up during the screening process, following your application. We provide a range of UK qualifications which can be studied overeas and by distance learning, such as iGCSEs, Functional Skills and Progression Awards which may well provide you with what you need. You may also decide to study further qualifications within your own country before embarking on an ABID.

Work experience, specific skills and specialist knowledge

You should always check university's entry requirements, both compulsory and preferred, as they will often say what they expect from a candidate. This may include a work placement, specific interpersonal skills, or evidence of wide reading and existing knowledge about the degree, the career, or the industry.


The website and materials were easy to navigate and the Facebook group gave me extra reassurance and support.

The tutors were supportive, patient and most importantly motivated me to carry on when I found it tough. I would highly recommend them to anyone needing to gain an extra qualification to achieve their dream career. Emily


The learning materials were excellent and they exceeded my expectations. I would like to thank my family and the tutors for their amazing support.

I am happy to say to have secured a place to study a Nursing Degree this September. I cannot recommend them enough. Yannick


The course is excellently written with information perfectly explained for those who have been out of education.

I completed mine whilst working full time, undergoing several overseas military deployments in support of the COVID pandemic. I could not have done this without them, my tutors were with me every step of the way! John


Support of tutors, & the wider student community were fundamental in enabling me to overcome adversity. The peer support of fellow students proved a wonderful resource. People of all ages & backgrounds united in their desire to study & self-develop, quick to offer help & encouragement. So I became active in supporting others through the Facebook Group. Richard


I have dyslexia. They suited all my needs. It was flexible, affordable, and the modules offered would provide me with the fundamental basics to study a Law degree.

They did more than help me get into my dream Russell Group university studying Law. The whole experience finally made me feel academically worthy. Sam


Tutors and staff have been fantastic in helping me achieve the grades I need, as well as any other situations I needed support with.

I applied to 2 universities and have received conditional offers from both.

I have achieved more credits than the offer requires, it wouldn't have been possible without them. Aaliya


I loved the flexibility that comes with the course and the outstanding tutors.

I have since been offered a place from two universities to study a BSc in Adult Nursing.

It is in this regard that I strongly recommend them without hesitation for any person who would like to reboot their career. Mehluli


I was very nervous about beginning my studies as I thought that Access to HE Diplomas were aimed at mature students, being 17 at the time of beginning my studies. But I was so wrong!

The Diploma is for anyone wanting to enter higher education. The staff, and my tutors especially, couldn't have been more accommodating and supportive. Beth


From day one I found my tutors to be incredibly friendly, supportive and accessible. They encourage independent learning, but are always there to give guidance and answer questions of any kind.

The learning materials are brilliant; extremely thorough and logically laid out in topics and sub-topics, so you move smoothly through. Victoria


The materials were easy to follow. I received advice from others via the Facebook page & from my personal tutor, who was always so quick to answer any questions. During the modules, I developed my research methods & even my English improved. I am far more confident in finding the pros & cons of every theory. I now feel I am in a far better position & I am currently enrolled on an LLB Qualifying Law degree. Sean


They stood out for me because of their flexibility and affordability.

Enrolling to study remotely for a science course, was overwhelmingly nerve-wracking but my tutors were very kind, supportive and helpful. Their support allowed me to excel and achieve high grades. I have now secured a place at a university. Fanny