Cambridge offer for student who skipped 4 grades

PUBLISHED : Friday, 01 July, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 01 July, 2011, 12:00am


Fifteen-year-old Eric Lin Cheuk-yin, the youngest Hong Kong A-level exam candidate this year, has secured a conditional offer from the University of Cambridge

Eric can start at Cambridge next year when he turns 16. He scored an A in physics, a B in pure mathematics and a C in applied mathematics.

The Diocesan Boys' School student skipped four grades from Secondary Two to Six last year. In last year's GCE Advanced Level Exam, he achieved an A in mathematics and a B in additional mathematics.

Before he received the news about Cambridge, he had already applied for the local A-level exams, deciding to take them as a challenge after taking the GCE and to 'stretch his limits'.

But he said he felt disappointed not to have done his best in mathematics, in which he was most confident, in the Hong Kong A-levels.

'Sitting for the Hong Kong A-levels is tougher because it has a more rigorous syllabus than GCE,' he said.

He said the key to being a good mathematician was to establish a solid foundation and practice continuously. That way you could attain good number sense, an intuitive understanding of numbers and their relationships.

Science is not a problem for Eric, but he says he needs to do more to improve his Chinese and English proficiency - for which he received a pass and a D respectively. 'I felt like walking on a tightrope all the way. I skipped four grades, so I found it hard to catch up with language skills which take time to accumulate.'

He has also received offers from the University of California (Los Angeles), the University of Waterloo in Canada and the University of London. But he has not made up his mind yet. He has also applied to local universities. At the top of his list are the University of Hong Kong and the Chinese University's mathematics programme. At seven, Eric had an intelligence quotient in excess of 130.