Today's news

August 15, 2003

Five A levels is too many, says Cambridge
Cambridge University dampened the celebrations of thousands of A-level students yesterday by urging them not to amass too many A grades.
(The Times)

Bumper crop of A-level results leave universities struggling to sift talent
Record numbers of students emerged from schools yesterday clutching five top-grade A-level passes. The unprecedented level of achievement, with more than 162,000 A grades awarded, underlined the scale of the difficulties faced by elite universities in trying to distinguish between candidates who have all been predicted to achieve the maximum score.
(The Times)

Cambridge college accused of elitism after rejecting star students
Three state school students who each achieved at least five A grades at A level have been rejected by Trinity College, Cambridge, provoking a new row over elitism.
(Independent, Daily Telegraph)

Parents invest in student property
Mounting student debt is pushing an increasing number of parents to buy student property for their children, according to a Halifax report.
(Financial Times)

Let me in, I'm a genius
Adam Spencer may be a model A-level pupil, but no university will offer him a place because he's only 13. Is he or any other child prodigy ready to make the leap into the realities of student life?

Painkillers increase chance of miscarriage
Women taking painkillers such as aspirin or ibuprofen when they become pregnant have a higher risk of miscarrying than those who are not or who are taking another type of painkiller, a study has shown. The research, by a team at the Kaiser Permanente Institute in Oakland, California, is published in the British Medical Journal.
(The Times, Daily Telegraph, Daily Mail, Sun)

Iron-eating bug found to thrive in 121C heat
A newly discovered microorganism, dubbed Strain 121, has been found to thrive at 121C -- some 8C higher than the previous recorded maximum temperature that a living organism could survive. The researchers, Kazem Kashefi and Derek Lovley from the University of Massachusetts, found the tiny creature in a deep-sea volcanic vent on the bed of the Pacific Ocean. The study is published in Science.

Twin strength
Twins are less likely to commit suicide than others, despite being more likely to be mentally ill, Danish scientists have found. The research is published in the British Medical Journal.

Astronomer dies
Gerald Hawkins, the astronomer who 'decoded' Stonehenge, has died, aged 75.


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