Hey there! Sign in to join this conversationNew here? Join for free
    Online

    20
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Noble.)
    Which is a major downside of going to Oxbridge, the possibility of ending up with a 2:2 and not finding a job, when you could've got a 2:1 from somewhere else and been automatically much more employable - it's a very scary thought!
    It's a risk you factor in, but there are so many pluses to being at a top university generally that it's still really worthwhile I suspect. Also, not everyone tries to get their first job in one of the big graduate entry factories.
    Offline

    3
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Noble.)
    Which is a major downside of going to Oxbridge, the possibility of ending up with a 2:2 and not finding a job, when you could've got a 2:1 from somewhere else and been automatically much more employable - it's a very scary thought!
    The proportion of 2:2s achieved at Oxbridge is negligibly different compared to other RG uni's for English according to KIS, and I expect the same is true of most other courses. If you're good enough to get in the chances are you'll be good enough to get a 2:1+.
    Offline

    15
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by caveman123)
    The quality of the students is, in my view the most mathematically able in the UK. Certainly they have the highest grades, though I'm not sure how it compares to the best in other countries.
    I think this is certainly arguable, and you may well be right, though its hard to know how objective and scientific one can ever be about this. Pretty much any maths student at a COWI institution will have A*A* in maths and further maths (if they're from the A-level system). In any case, such grades are necessary but not sufficient guarantee of success at HE-level maths.

    Funding plays a large part too, in that Cambridge has a large if not the largest chunk of funding from the government which puts them at an (unfair) advantage.
    What tables I have seen over recent years of research money usually has Cambridge relatively low and below Warwick and Oxford, though again its hard to get a fair measure of this. In any case, I think its college endowments that subsidise the supervision/tutorial system most and which is probably the most distinctive feature of an undergraduate's Oxbridge experience.
    Online

    20
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by RichE)

    What tables I have seen over recent years of research money usually has Cambridge relatively low and below Warwick and Oxford, though again its hard to get a fair measure of this. In any case, I think its college endowments that subsidise the supervision/tutorial system most and which is probably the most distinctive feature of an undergraduate's Oxbridge experience.
    Do you mean direct central government research funding? Cambridge ranked second after Oxford in 2012 for that. The situation is complicated as there are also many private awards, other award-giving bodies and specialist research centre-focused grants. I suspect Cambridge is highest overall once all of these are taken into account.
    Offline

    12
    ReputationRep:
    This thread must be so depressing for aston students

    OT, id go for the 2.1, id still go for the 2.1 if it was from imperial/warwick etc. A 1st from Aston is equivalent to 3 years retail experience at primark .
    Offline

    12
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by RichE)
    I think this is certainly arguable, and you may well be right, though its hard to know how objective and scientific one can ever be about this. Pretty much any maths student at a COWI institution will have A*A* in maths and further maths (if they're from the A-level system). In any case, such grades are necessary but not sufficient guarantee of success at HE-level maths.

    What tables I have seen over recent years of research money usually has Cambridge relatively low and below Warwick and Oxford, though again its hard to get a fair measure of this. In any case, I think its college endowments that subsidise the supervision/tutorial system most and which is probably the most distinctive feature of an undergraduate's Oxbridge experience.
    Of course, this is going to be biased (I did maths at Cambridge), but I think Cambridge is better for maths, for many reasons:

    1. Higher entrance requirements - STEP is clearly harder than the oxford entrance papers.
    2. Being surrounded by the best students - IMO contestants train at trinity college, cambridge, and most of them choose to study there after.
    3. The history - Oxford has a great history for Maths, but Cambridge has arguably the best in the world over it's whole history.
    4. Reputation of Part III.
    5. Difficulty and format of the exam papers - Cambridge allows for more differentiation at the top end.
    Offline

    15
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Fullofsurprises)
    Do you mean direct central government research funding? Cambridge ranked second after Oxford in 2012 for that. The situation is complicated as there are also many private awards, other award-giving bodies and specialist research centre-focused grants. I suspect Cambridge is highest overall once all of these are taken into account.
    I was talking about various tables relating to funding of mathematics.
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    1st from aston clearly no doubt... a 1st is always a 1st...in this world!

    otherwise..anywhere u go, books are the same, modules are the same... raw truth...
    Offline

    1
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by mcr2288)
    1st from aston clearly no doubt... a 1st is always a 1st...in this world!

    otherwise..anywhere u go, books are the same, modules are the same... raw truth...
    A First from Bolton or a 2.1 from Oxford?

    Books, modules, lectures, tutorials, are not the same. You're so wrong.
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Drederick Tatum)
    Of course, this is going to be biased (I did maths at Cambridge), but I think Cambridge is better for maths, for many reasons:

    1. Higher entrance requirements - STEP is clearly harder than the oxford entrance papers.
    2. Being surrounded by the best students - IMO contestants train at trinity college, cambridge, and most of them choose to study there after.
    3. The history - Oxford has a great history for Maths, but Cambridge has arguably the best in the world over it's whole history.
    4. Reputation of Part III.
    5. Difficulty and format of the exam papers - Cambridge allows for more differentiation at the top end.
    Some thoughts on your points.

    1. STEP is harder but relatively (as it's taken around the time of A-Levels) is it harder than MAT?

    2. IMO = best? Maybe but similar threads citing the Chinese are the best since they win the IMO year after year was met with the usual "it's because they train harder / more".

    3. History? Not sure what that's got to do with it. It is famous because people talk about all the time and people talk about it because that's all they ever hear!

    4. Part III is insanely hard. Need it be?

    5. Agreed

    Overall I do think Cambridge is better.
    Offline

    15
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Drederick Tatum)
    Of course, this is going to be biased (I did maths at Cambridge), but I think Cambridge is better for maths, for many reasons:

    1. Higher entrance requirements - STEP is clearly harder than the oxford entrance papers.
    2. Being surrounded by the best students - IMO contestants train at trinity college, cambridge, and most of them choose to study there after.
    3. The history - Oxford has a great history for Maths, but Cambridge has arguably the best in the world over it's whole history.
    4. Reputation of Part III.
    5. Difficulty and format of the exam papers - Cambridge allows for more differentiation at the top end.
    Thanks for the neg rep - not sure what was so polemical about my post that it merited that, given that I just said such rankings were hard to objectively make.
    • PS Reviewer
    Offline

    20
    ReputationRep:
    PS Reviewer
    (Original post by Fullofsurprises)
    It's a risk you factor in, but there are so many pluses to being at a top university generally that it's still really worthwhile I suspect. Also, not everyone tries to get their first job in one of the big graduate entry factories.
    This :ahee:
    Offline

    12
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by RichE)
    Thanks for the neg rep - not sure what was so polemical about my post that it merited that, given that I just said such rankings were hard to objectively make.
    Yeah, that was a motor error... I didn't mean to
    Offline

    3
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by The_Lonely_Goatherd)
    This :ahee:
    How have you found the jobs market personally with a Desmond from Oxford?
    Offline

    12
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by dbkey)
    Some thoughts on your points.

    1. STEP is harder but relatively (as it's taken around the time of A-Levels) is it harder than MAT?

    2. IMO = best? Maybe but similar threads citing the Chinese are the best since they win the IMO year after year was met with the usual "it's because they train harder / more".

    3. History? Not sure what that's got to do with it. It is famous because people talk about all the time and people talk about it because that's all they ever hear!

    4. Part III is insanely hard. Need it be?

    5. Agreed

    Overall I do think Cambridge is better.
    1. I thought STEP was relatively harder also; in fact, I did oxford past entrance papers as practice for my cambridge interview, and remember finding them quite easy.

    2. I would agree; there are plenty of people who, given the training, might do just as well as the actual british competitors in the IMO. However, when choosing between people who are 100% likely to be IMO standard (because they did it) and those who are <100% likely (because they didn't do it), I would choose the former. These tend to go to Cambridge.

    3. This just enriched my personal experience of studying there; I liked studying in the same place where many 'mathematical idols' had done so. Depends on what you think makes a university good for a particular subject, I suppose.

    4. Part III is known for being tough, and this attracts even more talented people (wishing to test themselves against a world renowned course). This again improves the working atmosphere.

    5. To add to what's already been said, I strongly believe (having now been to 4 different universities and seen what the syllabus is like at each) that although I think Cam has harder undergraduate level exam papers, there are maybe only 2 or 3 universities (Ox, Cam, Imperial) that feel it's important to have a real 'problem' component in exam questions, instead of simply bookwork.
    • PS Reviewer
    Offline

    20
    ReputationRep:
    PS Reviewer
    (Original post by Tuerin)
    How have you found the jobs market personally with that class from Oxford?
    Well I mostly haven't been going for graduate scheme-type jobs. I've had quite a few interviews and quite a few rejections, though I think that has more to do with my disability (I was quite naive for a while and was mentioning it in interviews :facepalm: ) than to do with my 2.2. I've only been told by one firm that they couldn't even interview me due to my 2.2 but that was for an education-based graduate scheme.

    Tbh though, the job market is a nightmare for me anyway because I'm disabled. It means I have to select what I apply for quite carefully. Plus I'm quite picky anyway about which sectors I wanna work in and I don't apply outside those :nah: So I don't really notice any cold shouldering over the 2.2 :p:
    Offline

    13
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Intriguing Alias)
    And certainly I know of people who have gotten firsts in maths in other universities (that will not be named) who certainly are not as good at maths as people in my college struggling to get 2:2s.
    I agree but it's all about the teaching, though. I'm doing really well on my course, but I've seen some Oxbridge worksheets on related topics and there's a huge difference in difficulty. If I'd been taught there, I'm sure I'd be able to at least attempt the worksheets. I wish I'd had the chance!
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Drederick Tatum)
    1. I thought STEP was relatively harder also; in fact, I did oxford past entrance papers as practice for my cambridge interview, and remember finding them quite easy.

    2. I would agree; there are plenty of people who, given the training, might do just as well as the actual british competitors in the IMO. However, when choosing between people who are 100% likely to be IMO standard (because they did it) and those who are <100% likely (because they didn't do it), I would choose the former. These tend to go to Cambridge.

    3. This just enriched my personal experience of studying there; I liked studying in the same place where many 'mathematical idols' had done so. Depends on what you think makes a university good for a particular subject, I suppose.

    4. Part III is known for being tough, and this attracts even more talented people (wishing to test themselves against a world renowned course). This again improves the working atmosphere.

    5. To add to what's already been said, I strongly believe (having now been to 4 different universities and seen what the syllabus is like at each) that although I think Cam has harder undergraduate level exam papers, there are maybe only 2 or 3 universities (Ox, Cam, Imperial) that feel it's important to have a real 'problem' component in exam questions, instead of simply bookwork.

    Bookwork? Ah yes I recall passing two exams without knowing anything, simply by reciting the proof!

    How exactly can you test one's knowledge in a mathematical proof, given usually at the undergrad level, there's only one way to prove a theorem?
    Offline

    16
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Tuerin)
    The proportion of 2:2s achieved at Oxbridge is negligibly different compared to other RG uni's for English according to KIS, and I expect the same is true of most other courses. If you're good enough to get in the chances are you'll be good enough to get a 2:1+.
    The point is is that the other RG uni's course is generally easier, and also as the cohort is less strong, you're far more likely to get a higher classification going to another RG than going to Oxbridge by being one of the stronger candidates. This is generally true for science subjects, especially for Cambridge where they often give out less firsts the other RG universities. I'm aware the 2.1+ rate for arts at Oxbridge is very high.
    Offline

    0
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by Nichrome)
    The point is is that the other RG uni's course is generally easier, and also as the cohort is less strong, you're far more likely to get a higher classification going to another RG than going to Oxbridge by being one of the stronger candidates.
    I think a huge deal of this is down to the subject. Subjects like Maths, Law, Economics, NatSci etc, Oxbridge's course are definitely more rigorous and less forgiving. However, 97% of students got a 2:1 or better at Oxford for History, I'm a little sceptical whether getting the 2:1 is that hard, and would almost be ready to suggest that the vast majority of History students at Warwick, UCL, Durham, LSE, Bristol etc would be getting a 2:1 at Oxford just like they do at their home institution. If you work hard at Oxford and are reasonably intelligent, I don't see why you wouldn't get a 2:1 in History, and to be quite honest this doesn't make you particularly special or mean that you'd get a first at Warwick.
 
 
 
  • See more of what you like on The Student Room

    You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

  • Poll
    Would you like to hibernate through the winter months?
    Useful resources

    Groups associated with this forum:

    View associated groups
  • See more of what you like on The Student Room

    You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

  • The Student Room, Get Revising and Marked by Teachers are trading names of The Student Room Group Ltd.

    Register Number: 04666380 (England and Wales), VAT No. 806 8067 22 Registered Office: International House, Queens Road, Brighton, BN1 3XE

    Quick reply
    Reputation gems: You get these gems as you gain rep from other members for making good contributions and giving helpful advice.