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    (Original post by 7589200)
    Right. So this is the scene at my school from September of final year.

    Every week for 8 weeks we had two hour sessions three times a week with a teacher who could "handle" STEP questions for all of the Cambridge mathmos. I used to go to some of them because I was doing Further Maths and it helped a lot. People who would be able to clarify anything they wanted on the spot. Even if we run with your argument that you need to naturally talented to handle STEP and you can't be taught it (which I disagree with) then answer this, is it easier to push yourself to do 6+ hours of STEP prep for weeks on end or attend an after-school session with your fellow mathmo mates. Then you'll say 'well if you were motivated enough, you'd do the prep yourself' ... YES of course you would, but thats not my point. My point is that even the less-motivated, less-intelligent students are brought up to a competitive level just by going to these types of schools.

    Do you buy my argument now?
    Are you arguing that the advantage (or a least a lot of it) comes from the increased motivation people at private schools have (for whatever reason)?
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    (Original post by james22)
    Are you arguing that the advantage (or a least a lot of it) comes from the increased motivation people at private schools have (for whatever reason)?
    No. Im saying that even those who are less motivated and less intelligent, which is a much bigger number than the number of people who are highly motivated and highly intelligent, are benefitted greatly when there is an atmosphere and expectation of Oxbridge application and success.
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    All the universities at the top of the list are London based universities thus its no coincidence that the wages are higher because the wages in London are higher because everything costs more.
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    (Original post by 7589200)
    If I remember correctly the most state-school-friendly college in Oxbridge is St Johns College, Oxford which has a rate of 50%.

    Being rich gets you
    1. Better coaching for passing exams
    2. Better interview practice
    3. Better help with your personal statement
    4. Increased coaching for exams like STEP and BMAT
    5. Better advice and guidance from Oxbridge offer holders in the year above you
    6. Better knowledge about which colleges and courses to apply for and many schools have 'track records' of getting people in at certain places year after year
    7. Better access to improve your extra-ciricular activities

    And on and on and on.
    1. I don't go for coaching/tuition.
    2. I did not have interview practices, did not even practise by myself tbh. Oh I had a mock interview where all I was told was that I suck, and it was nothing like the real one
    3. Nobody helped me with my PS.
    4. No coaching for TSA and MLAT for Oxford; did not do a single practice paper on either before tests.
    5. No seniors that I know well got into Oxbridge, hence no guidance.
    6. Knowledge gotten off online (anyone can do that with an internet connection), and my school sucks.
    7. I had some access but extra activities only made up 10% of my whole PS, and I mentioned 2-3 out of 10+ that I have.

    Well maybe they ARE deluded to take me in, but thing is, none of this really matters as long as you do good free research online, know what's going to happen every step of the way and have a passion for your subject. And I'm quite sure "poor" or "less grossly wealthy" people have easy access to information, as I had.
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    (Original post by michelle37)
    1. I don't go for coaching/tuition.
    2. I did not have interview practices, did not even practise by myself tbh. Oh I had a mock interview where all I was told was that I suck, and it was nothing like the real one
    3. Nobody helped me with my PS.
    4. No coaching for TSA and MLAT for Oxford; did not do a single practice paper on either before tests.
    5. No seniors that I know well got into Oxbridge, hence no guidance.
    6. Knowledge gotten off online (anyone can do that with an internet connection), and my school sucks.
    7. I had some access but extra activities only made up 10% of my whole PS, and I mentioned 2-3 out of 10+ that I have.

    Well maybe they ARE deluded to take me in, but thing is, none of this really matters as long as you do good free research online, know what's going to happen every step of the way and have a passion for your subject. And I'm quite sure "poor" or "less grossly wealthy" people have easy access to information, as I had.
    Firstly congratulations on getting in.

    Secondly, im not saying that highly resourceful and motivated people like you don't exist. What I'm saying is that if you went to a private school with a large number of people who get in to Oxbridge year on year, then even your less-motivated and academic friend, would also have got in. Extrapolate that phenomenon over a large number of schools and statistically I would argue that 'being rich' helps in all the ways I have mentioned.
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    (Original post by 7589200)
    Firstly congratulations on getting in.

    Secondly, im not saying that highly resourceful and motivated people like you don't exist. What I'm saying is that if you went to a private school with a large number of people who get in to Oxbridge year on year, then even your less-motivated and academic friend, would also have got in. Extrapolate that phenomenon over a large number of schools and statistically I would argue that 'being rich' helps in all the ways I have mentioned.
    "Being rich" helps in almost every area of life, in one way or another, generally speaking. Studies show that children born into wealthier families tend to have a significantly higher IQ than those born into "lower socio-economic class" households, higher IQ is correlated with better life outcomes on almost every measure, etc etc. Obviously there are plenty of exceptions, but in general, it's the case that the rich tend to do "better" in life than the poor.

    Yeah, this is pretty unfair. But it's just the way society is structured, and until we solve the problem on a societal level, I don't really think you can condemn Oxbridge for "favouring the rich" or whatever the arguments are. Do you propose we lower the grade boundaries for students from poorer backgrounds?
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    (Original post by 7589200)
    No. Im saying that even those who are less motivated and less intelligent, which is a much bigger number than the number of people who are highly motivated and highly intelligent, are benefitted greatly when there is an atmosphere and expectation of Oxbridge application and success.
    Yes they are, in the sense that a private school teaches you much better and gives you a much better overall education and motivation. All of that appluies to everywhere in life though, nothing special about Oxbrdige. Regarding STEP specifically, you rpoint would be far more valid if it hadn't been shown that there was a great correlation between doing STEP and doing well in the degree. It shows that if you can be coached to do well in STEP then you have basically been coached to do well in the degree so are really an indeal candidate.

    EDIT: My basic point is that being rich and going to a private school doesn't help with an Oxbridge application much more than it helps in general, so there is no problem with Oxbridge.
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    (Original post by 7589200)
    Firstly congratulations on getting in.

    Secondly, im not saying that highly resourceful and motivated people like you don't exist. What I'm saying is that if you went to a private school with a large number of people who get in to Oxbridge year on year, then even your less-motivated and academic friend, would also have got in. Extrapolate that phenomenon over a large number of schools and statistically I would argue that 'being rich' helps in all the ways I have mentioned.
    Thank you

    I might be resourceful, but I'm not highly motivated in any way - in fact I'm in quite a dilemma because I actually rather go to UCL because they do applied degrees and Oxbridge mostly does purely academia. I only applied because there was an extra space on UCAS and I didn't want anywhere else.

    Hence I believe that people (rich/poor) who are even more motivated than me (Oxbridge is their dream school and their lifelong destiny since before they were even born and they can't see themselves anywhere else and is suicidal at a rejection etc etc) will be even more resourceful and take advantage of the vast free resources available without spending on extra coaching/paid help.

    I think that the problem with state schoolers/ poorer students is that they don't have enough motivation to even apply to Oxbridge, thinking that their schools have no successful candidates = they're going to fail as well, and also having no confidence.
    I agree that rich students having coaching sessions will boost their confidence, but I think that it only helps psychologically most, and not so much on the actual help that they claim to do (if you know what I mean).
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    Okay, you've made a universal claim. Let's set out an argument.

    1. Everyone with an Oxford or Cambridge degree is an elitist.
    2. I (will soon) have an Oxford degree.
    3. Therefore, I am an elitist.

    However, I am not an elitist. So one of the premises is wrong. 2 is true, so 1 must be false.

    So, your original claim is false.
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    (Original post by xMr_BrightSide)
    Okay, you've made a universal claim. Let's set out an argument.

    1. Everyone with an Oxford or Cambridge degree is an elitist.
    2. I (will soon) have an Oxford degree.
    3. Therefore, I am an elitist.

    However, I am not an elitist. So one of the premises is wrong. 2 is true, so 1 must be false.

    So, your original claim is false.
    I know it is.

    Thing is, using a line like that attracts more people to the thread.

    There's a lot of interesting discussion afterwards though.
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    (Original post by 7589200)
    I know it is.

    Thing is, using a line like that attracts more people to the thread.

    There's a lot of interesting discussion afterwards though.
    Pretty underhand tbh, and the rest of the OP is just plain wrong too. Not much point making a thread when the whole discussion is centred on massive assumptions and falsehoods....

    Whilst being in Oxford, I've noticed very little elitism. On the contrary, most students are aware of the Oxford stereotype and so actively try to avoid it.
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    (Original post by 7589200)
    Most of them are so in your face about it! They think they're better than everyone else at every other university.

    What they don't understand is that in the real world their degree doesn't really mean anything.
    No it's YOU who thinks that.

    Degrees do mean something depending on what career you're pursuing but an Oxbridge degree isn't exactly a golden ticket to success especially if you scraped a pass and lack the appropriate social/life skills i.e. a member of the British Royal Family.
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    (Original post by xMr_BrightSide)
    Pretty underhand tbh, and the rest of the OP is just plain wrong too. Not much point making a thread when the whole discussion is centred on massive assumptions and falsehoods....

    Whilst being in Oxford, I've noticed very little elitism. On the contrary, most students are aware of the Oxford stereotype and so actively try to avoid it.
    Yes its downright blasphemy!

    No the interesting bit of the thread is the bit about people getting in cos they're rich.

    I thought Oxford was actually much worse than Cambridge. People at Cambridge are mostly extremely down-to-earth; at least on the surface. Especially science students.
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    Having seen what the Cambridge United fans are like on TV, I am a bit worried. Does Cambridge have lots of working class chavs?
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    (Original post by Blitzkrieg15)
    Having seen what the Cambridge United fans are like on TV, I am a bit worried. Does Cambridge have lots of working class chavs?
    lol well sort of. Its not a rich part of the country.
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    (Original post by 7589200)
    Most of them are so in your face about it! They think they're better than everyone else at every other university.

    What they don't understand is that in the real world their degree doesn't really mean anything.
    I remember reading your posts back in the day when I was applying for medical school. Your attitude towards Oxbridge was the exact opposite back then What changed?
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    (Original post by Asklepios)
    I remember reading your posts back in the day when I was applying for medical school. Your attitude towards Oxbridge was the exact opposite back then What changed?
    lol hi!

    What was my attitude about Oxbridge back then? Remind me!
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    (Original post by 7589200)
    lol hi!

    What was my attitude about Oxbridge back then? Remind me!
    Well ok, maybe you thought it was elitist. But more than happy to be a part of it. E.g. Iirc you were at the cambridge college I applied to (I was rejected post-pool but that doesn't matter ), and stuff like "yep my college is way better than others for medicine."


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    (Original post by Asklepios)
    Well ok, maybe you thought it was elitist. But more than happy to be a part of it. E.g. Iirc you were at the cambridge college I applied to (I was rejected post-pool but that doesn't matter ), and stuff like "yep my college is way better than others for medicine."


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    Ahh lol Nah, apparently after my year group we had an absolutely terrible time and its now one of the worst colleges for Medicine in terms of exam results!

    Nothing has changed about my attitudes towards Oxbridge, I was just hoping to get a few people into my thread so theyd talk about stuff.

    Ive never felt that Oxbridge is elitist baring one or two small groups of people, mostly in Oxford rather than Cambridge. Ive always thought the degree is as precious and as significant as what the holder is willing to put it to use doing. And most of the people I know are pretty down-to-earth nice people!
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    (Original post by 7589200)
    Ahh lol Nah, apparently after my year group we had an absolutely terrible time and its now one of the worst colleges for Medicine in terms of exam results!

    Nothing has changed about my attitudes towards Oxbridge, I was just hoping to get a few people into my thread so theyd talk about stuff.

    Ive never felt that Oxbridge is elitist baring one or two small groups of people, mostly in Oxford rather than Cambridge. Ive always thought the degree is as precious and as significant as what the holder is willing to put it to use doing. And most of the people I know are pretty down-to-earth nice people!
    Ahaha I see I do agree with you that the aptitude of the person (and other personal factors) matter much more than simply having an Oxbridge degree. But they are good universities and this will help in terms of opportunities and "push to achieve." Although I guess the extent of the Oxbridge advantage is debatable.

    In the first page, you linked average starting salaries. Now let's be honest - big high-paying jobs in finance require you to be numerate and have a logical way of thinking but they don't necessarily need insane intelligence of any sort. If we look at success in academia instead as a measure of graduate performance, things may look different.


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