What is NewStep @ Uni. Newcastle (1 Viewer)

dv3

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Im not quite sure if i will make it to Newcastle University so i was wondering (incase i dont) what newstep is like. What do you do? How long does it go for?
 

44Ronin

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I did intensive Open Foundation at Ourimbah campus (central coast), which is very much similiar to Newstep -
except it's for over 20's and it's only 40 units over a single semester..

We were in the the same units and classes as newstep people. - doing the same subjects.

The main difference is, in open foundation students complete 40 units of their choice with no compulsory units-
and also there is no entry requirements except to be over 20.

Newstep people complete 80 units, Of these, 20 units are compulsory units of english: reading, writing research -
and you do 10 units of this subject each semester. The rest are chosen.

I did 20 unit subjects because I wanted to narrow and focus my studies.
I think the less subjects you do in each semester the better.
The HSC is a clusterfuck and I wanted to avoid that.

So I suggest if you go into newstep, narrow down your subjects to be
doing only 3 subjects at any one time.

The way subjects work and the assessment of subjects works is very much the same to how real university works.
You need to become familiar with referencing styles and cover sheets etc.,
The one good thing was that my subjects/units were more interactive than most university units -
you could ask the lecturer questions etc., in actual lectures and the like

For my two 20 unit subjects, I had two hours of lecture time and one hour of tutorial time. Exactly like most uni subjects.

I did EPHUMA305: Ancient History and Culture ajd EPHUMA306: English film and literature. I really enjoyed both units.

In Ancient History and Culture I was constantly getting High Distinctions and in English Literature and Film
I was getting one or two distinctions but mostly Credits. I even copped a low pass in one assessment.

The grading/ marking is not completely retarded like in high school. Marks are not considered linear,
a distinction or high distinction is a really good mark and far above a credit or pass.

Assessment is graded like this (like uni grading)

Pass: 50-64
Credit: 65-74
Distinction: 75-84
High Distinction: 85-100

In my overall assessment I averaged 80 (Distinction).
In all honesty I could of done much better in English Film and Literature.

I am not exactly sure what UAI I recieved - but I was accepted a place in all 9 UAC course preferences, so it must of been very good. 90+

I think the newstep people are capped at a UAI of 93...........I don't think it should be difficult to achieve 90+ though

In my opinion it was really much worthwhile because it prepares you for university study
much much better than the H.S.C ever could, and it really doesn't cost you anything (unlike the T.P.P courses at other money grubbing universities).
It's superior to the HSC in terms of relevancy to continuing on to university study,
and it's easier to get into university course places because you are not competing in a complete clusterfuck that is the HSC

Hope this helps.
 
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em_516

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I've not done Newstep or Open Foundation but I don't think it's necessary to do only three subjects. If you can do the HSC, you can handle four subjects in a semester. Being Newstep or Open Foundation, they'll set you up for it and if you use a little common sense and time management you'll be laughing. Four subjects a semester is full-time uni and I think it would be a good time to become more familiar with juggling uni and everyday life.
 

dv3

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So how long does it usually take to complete the entire New Step?
 

jess241

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Hey, I'm doing Newstep atm and it's actually not too bad. It sets you up pretty well for uni:)
 

ZaraKu

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Newstep is fun :) esp. if you do Directed Study & have Ron as your teacher, he's awesome.

You have to do 40 units a semester (4 subjects in sem. 1, 3 in sem. 2 as 1 subject is 20 units) and it takes a year to complete. ALL classes are compulsory (meaning you can't just not go somedays unless you have a decent excuse) and you have a good range of subjects to choose form but you have to do english both semesters, but it's not your typical HSC shitty english. You can only get a max UAI of 93, but there are also some degrees under that which don't accept Newstep students, some unis also don't recognise it as an entry qualification if you want to do your undergraduate degree elsewhere.

All in all it's a good program and from what I've heard from lecturers many Newstep students end up more prepared for undergraduate life as compared to straight out of high school first years, so it's a great way to get into uni without diving into it full on.
 

dv3

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How many hours (roughly) per week does New Step Take?
 

melliexo

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Hello I am doing Newstep 2009 at Newcastle Uni. Wow, what to tell you and where to start... Newstep has (as corny as it sounds) changed my life. Looking back, I feel like I wasted year 11 and 12 with the highly competitive HSC. All that stress was not worth it for the poor UAI I recieved. I should of dropped out in year 10 and worked for two years and saved up for something worthwhile. I'll share with you some honest figures, my UAI was 48.7 for the 2008 HSC. Last semester I passed Semester one Newstep with a Credit in English, a distinction in IT (computers) a distinction in Design Drawing and a High Distinction in Directed Study. Already I am well above average within the course. Don't think for a moment Newstep is a bludge and an easy way into uni. I have seen so many people drop out because they finally realised they did not want to put the work in for uni which is exactly what i did last year and I promised myself it was not going to happen twice. How I did it? Well the relaxed uni environment is amazing, I mean it's a totally different world. You are amongst some of the brightest people in Australia!

The lecturers and tutors are wonderful who offer every minute of their time to you. You can contact them via email and personal consultations and some offer their office/home phone number for emergencies! Blackboard and student mail(online organiser, mail system, course information) is amazing and really helpful. Also, the library is tops. There is an online library site (Newcat) which has all the journals, books newspapers that you need for your study. Lucky for you, the new Flowers room section of the library is open and available to use and has comfy new lounges, large windows overlooking the grass and trees and computer areas (no more line ups for a computer). You are also have no restrictions on sites you browse, so if you are feeling like you need a break from your study - Myspace or facebook is not blocked (hurrah). Food and drink are also allowed in the library unlike high school.

Most people would agree that the lucky ones who have done Newstep have had the beneficial experience of uni before they start their post grad. Think of 2011 (if you do Newstep and pass it), you would be used to the culture of uni and how to use blackboard, online services, studentmail, printers etc unlike other first years. Newstep teaches you how to write essays which I was never taught how to properly write. I recieved a distinction on my last two essays because of the skills I had learned in Newstep English. Because you only need to be at uni a few days a week, you will have understanding, supporting tutors who will not scare you like your teachers do now when it comes to the HSC and is entirely free (govt funded) - it is a totally relaxing year. There is hard work, believe me, but you will have to experience the difference yourself.

Where do I start with the facilities? The Shortland building is cool because of the bar, huge food court, Subway, post office, Gloria Jeans (yum!) and Pinkies the candy shop! there are some on the Hunter side too. The hours a week are so convenient! If you are lucky, you can fit your classes within three days, if not four days but at least one of those days will have one class. Last semester I went on Mon 9-3 (2 hr break), Wed 9-1 (1 hr break) and Friday 9-4 (2 hr break). This semester I am at the uni Tue 9-12, Wed 9-3 (3 hr break) and Friday 9-5 (2 hr break) As you can see, at least 2 full days off. Might I add the excellent elective choices... Such a shame though, I never heard about Newstep until my father rang up the uni and asked for options around my abismal UAI.

The high schools urgently need to stop telling students it's now or never and perhaps tell them that there is a light at the end of the tunnel if failure does occur. Tell your friends about Newstep if they are in doubt. This just may well be the best thing for you. Goodluck to you with the HSC. Do not forget Newstep is great and do not be ashamed of your HSC marks.
 
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Birkenau

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Be warned that from my experience, many of the students simply didn't belong there and were more suited to back of a high school English fundamentals class. However, it is really not hard to go well in Newstep, most of the content is easy, force fed and basically any monkey that can operate MS word will receive distinctions.

I don't know if they still have it, but there was an open research course (I forget the exact name). It is a complete waste of time. You sit there for 2 hours doing nothing 11 of 12 weeks. Only pursue if you're passionate about researching something for the sake of it.

Try pick something relevant to your degree of interest too, especially if you aren't adequently endowed with the knowledge from high school (eg: maths for any science/engineering/maths degree, biology for any science degree).
 

melliexo

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Be warned that from my experience, many of the students simply didn't belong there and were more suited to back of a high school English fundamentals class. However, it is really not hard to go well in Newstep, most of the content is easy, force fed and basically any monkey that can operate MS word will receive distinctions.

I don't know if they still have it, but there was an open research course (I forget the exact name). It is a complete waste of time. You sit there for 2 hours doing nothing 11 of 12 weeks. Only pursue if you're passionate about researching something for the sake of it.

Try pick something relevant to your degree of interest too, especially if you aren't adequently endowed with the knowledge from high school (eg: maths for any science/engineering/maths degree, biology for any science degree).
Well yes, you are correct. It is easy to pass Newstep to get into automatic entry courses that are popular - nursing, teaching etc... but if you are aiming for something higher, you really do have to work. The highest score you can achieve is 93. Think of the people aiming for subjects in the late 80's.
 

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