Surely Oxbridge degrees should be LESS valued than others... ? Watch

Ilustrius
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#121
(Original post by manchild007)
Funny that this league table placed Cambridge (for the first time too) at the number one position, following a COMPLETE overhaul of their ranking methodology, which indeed led to protests of one of the major publishing partners for the ranking, resulting in them inevitably walking out. Whilst I don't disagree that league tables all have their quirks, this is a VERY heavily flawed table.

Every other table has consistently (read for many many years), ranked HYP above Oxbridge or in some combination done so. Whilst foolishly degrading others replies is indeed a fun activity for the uninformed like yourself, I would insist you do your research and indeed stop making false assumptions about what I've said, so that it can better suit your purpose and thus some fallacious and utterly sophist reply.

PS. See also my reply below if you want specifics on certain things, no doubt something you'll twist and misconstrue to suit the purposes of your argument again :rolleyes:
Is that how you debate? Spit out random toss that completely contradicts yourself? One moment you criticize 'ranking methodology', immediately after wards you fervently defend another, THEN you have the audacity to claim that rankings are unreliable. What the hell? You're all over the place, what is your point?

I don't care what others think about me, and I certainly don't give a **** what you think. It's a subjective issue, so there's minimal required research. It doesn't take much mental capacity to formulate an informed opinion on institutional reputation. If you feel the need to conduct heaps of research on something so mundane and utterly useful, be my guest. But at the end of the day, your opinion is no more credible than mine. You're the one who's wasted hours performing futile research, and the irony is you know less than I do.

And read a book for once.
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puddlejumper
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(Original post by Philosopher-of-sorts)
I'm not sure whether this is the case for all subjects, since I haven't really researched them or spoken to any of the tutors/current students, but what I can say, is that for a degree such as PPE, Law or History, after you write an essay at Oxford, you then need to defend practically every statement you made in your essay against your tutor's counterargument, in person, on the spot.

Learning an area, formulating an argument, and then defending that argument on the spot against one of the top academics in the field you are arguing is a very, very different kettle of fish to just writing an essay, sending it in for marking and forgetting about it. My A Level Economics teacher used a similar method, and I tell you, I haven't forgotten more than 10% of the evidence I used in those essays. That is why the 1 to 1 or 2 to 1 tutorial method is so beneficial for the learning process.

Also, though at Cambridge I believe it's different now, Oxford bases your entire degree classification on your finals--so there is less (very little) scope for 'learning in bits' and then forgetting parts.

Overall I wouldn't say that makes these degrees inherently more valuable, but I would suggest it fosters a critical thinking faculty which many employers will value. And since degrees often serve more for their 'sorting function' than anything to do with what is learnt in them, the additional intensity of an Oxbridge degree will also serve to enhance its prestige.
Thank you.

At least one person on this thread has the intelligence to understand the point that was being made and to give a mature and well-thought out response.
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Ilustrius
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#123
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(Original post by puddlejumper)
If you had read the thread from the beginning you would be aware of the number of posts claiming that Oxbridge is better than other universities because they have to do a number of essays every week. Right.

I actually agree that the number of essays is irrelevant to the quality of a course but clearly you can't follow an argument so I'm just going to let it drop.
You opened with a series of absurd statements, so I felt obliged to disagree.
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Ilustrius
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(Original post by puddlejumper)
Thank you.

At least one person on this thread has the intelligence to understand the point that was being made and to give a mature and well-thought out response.
In future, construct your argument with greater clarity. Hopefully you've learned from this thread.
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Ilustrius
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#125
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(Original post by manchild007)
Oh what a surprise, the only objective evidence there is (which incidentally supports the view that HYP>Oxbridge), is now simply no longer reliable - I enjoy your reply critiquing EVERY SINGLE table and indeed informing me as to why they are all indeed "unreliable".

"Speaking of fallacies, how ironic", as indeed using league tables as a defense was fine when one (from the many, and for the first time ever) supported your view :rolleyes:
Again, what is your point? I'm sorry but you haven't conveyed in the slightest how Harvard, Yale or Princeton are better than Oxbridge. You've essentially posted a statement with no backing. Again.
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username457532
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(Original post by im so academic)
Because of the higher academic standards Oxbridge has compared to other universities.



No, because you're implying that academic standards are the same across all universities, which i snot true.



Oxbridge are known for their shorter, and more intense 8-week terms.



What possessed you to think Oxbridge degrees "should be less valued" than degrees from other universities? Seriously? :lolwut:

Yes, because London Met Maths > Cambridge Maths. :rolleyes:
What possessed you to think Oxbridge degrees "should be more valued" than degrees from other universities? Seriously?

And have you not realised there are more universities in this country than Cambridge and London Met and that there are more subjects than maths?
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TheSownRose
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(Original post by Peel)
You've assumed it's possible to get a third with doing "very little" at a top university like Oxbridge.

Another way of looking at the question which probably will answer your question is: is the top 10% at say London Met better than the bottom 20% at Oxbridge?
Hard to judge just based on percentage. If those top 10% are the highest 10% of 3rd degrees and the bottom 20% the lowest 20% of 1st degrees, then the Oxbridge ones are better.

However, if the top 10% are the highest 10% of 1st degrees and the bottom 20% the lowest 20% of 3rd degrees, then the London Met ones are.
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Slumpy
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#128
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(Original post by TheSownRose)
Hard to judge just based on percentage. If those top 10% are the highest 10% of 3rd degrees and the bottom 20% the lowest 20% of 1st degrees, then the Oxbridge ones are better.

However, if the top 10% are the highest 10% of 1st degrees and the bottom 20% the lowest 20% of 3rd degrees, then the London Met ones are.
There wasn't ambiguity in the question.
And how did you come up with that borderline? Seems a touch random from here.
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Apagg
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#129
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(Original post by puddlejumper)
But you've missed the point.

Other posters have claimed that Oxbridge is better because they do all these essays not because of the content of the course!

I don't really care one way or the other but it made me smile to see their posts and their belief that writing essays is the major factor in creating a quality education.
All other things being equal, doing more work will mean you take more in.
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DJKL
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(Original post by Philosopher-of-sorts)
I'm not sure whether this is the case for all subjects, since I haven't really researched them or spoken to any of the tutors/current students, but what I can say, is that for a degree such as PPE, Law or History, after you write an essay at Oxford, you then need to defend practically every statement you made in your essay against your tutor's counterargument, in person, on the spot.

Learning an area, formulating an argument, and then defending that argument on the spot against one of the top academics in the field you are arguing is a very, very different kettle of fish to just writing an essay, sending it in for marking and forgetting about it. My A Level Economics teacher used a similar method, and I tell you, I haven't forgotten more than 10% of the evidence I used in those essays. That is why the 1 to 1 or 2 to 1 tutorial method is so beneficial for the learning process.

Also, though at Cambridge I believe it's different now, Oxford bases your entire degree classification on your finals--so there is less (very little) scope for 'learning in bits' and then forgetting parts.

Overall I wouldn't say that makes these degrees inherently more valuable, but I would suggest it fosters a critical thinking faculty which many employers will value. And since degrees often serve more for their 'sorting function' than anything to do with what is learnt in them, the additional intensity of an Oxbridge degree will also serve to enhance its prestige.
Are Oxford (and Cambridge) the only Universities who review work on a one to one basis these days?

At Edinburgh in the 1980s English 2nd year was run in fairly small tutorial groups (mine had four students, 1st year tutorials circa ten) In first year there were open office times set where you could discuss written work and the mark awarded on a one to one basis, these were voluntary. In second year you were obliged to attend one to one essay reviews where you might, depending on the discussion, be able to persuade your tutor re the provisional mark awarded. (I had one essay where my tutor had provisionally marked 57/63, after a bit of discussion we settled at 60.

If other universities no longer afford this form of feedback they maybe have, as rumored, become mere degree factories. Certainly in English and History I acquired far more knowledge, understanding and reasoning skills through tutorials and essays than through lectures.

If minimal feedback is now the norm it is no wonder students now protest at the level of fees versus contact time.
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Slumpy
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(Original post by DJKL)
Are Oxford (and Cambridge) the only Universities who review work on a one to one basis these days?
As far as I'm aware, this kind of thing (say 1:2-4 odd) is pretty standard for science subjects amongst many unis.
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Student-1
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(Original post by SmallTownGirl)
What possessed you to think Oxbridge degrees "should be more valued" than degrees from other universities? Seriously?

And have you not realised there are more universities in this country than Cambridge and London Met and that there are more subjects than maths?
Sorry this isn't an attack at you specifically, you're just one of many people who have mentioned it, but I think an important thing to keep in mind is that while the actual degree may not necessarily be harder (and I don't know how any of us can judge unless we've been to oxbridge and another uni) employers aren't really looking at that. For example, I want to go into finance and I don't think universities could care less whether I've learnt more or less about tbd French revolution than someone at UCL. The reason why oxbridge degrees are so valued is because your at oxbridge, and this in itself indicates that you are most likely to be quite intelligent, a hard worker and so on. I'm definitely definitely not saying that there aren't people who are more intelligent at ucl, nottingham, bath etc etc but lots of employers see oxbridge as a 'safe' choice. I know the thread is asking whether the degree itself is more valued, so you might say I've missed the point, but I honestly think its not really the content of the degree that matters, or the quality of teaching, but what you do with your degree. Just because there is a tutorial system at oxbridge (which I agree is really helpful and gives an advantage other unis unfortunately can't match) this doesn't mean the degree should be any LESS valued. I would put just as much work in if I didn't have this teaching, the tutorial system just enhances my essay, it doesn't mean I do less work.

Sorry this is really really rambly! I don't mean to come across as pro-oxbridge or anything as I have had no experience of other university courses, I'm just saying that to say oxbridge degrees should be LESS valued just because they have extra help - they're still intelligent students and capable of working on their own!! As are students at loads and loads of other unis!!
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Student-1
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*you're, the... sorry I was typing on a phone so loads of that post doesnt make sense!! But the general idea is there
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username457532
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(Original post by Student-1)
Sorry this isn't an attack at you specifically, you're just one of many people who have mentioned it, but I think an important thing to keep in mind is that while the actual degree may not necessarily be harder (and I don't know how any of us can judge unless we've been to oxbridge and another uni) employers aren't really looking at that. For example, I want to go into finance and I don't think universities could care less whether I've learnt more or less about tbd French revolution than someone at UCL. The reason why oxbridge degrees are so valued is because your at oxbridge, and this in itself indicates that you are most likely to be quite intelligent, a hard worker and so on. I'm definitely definitely not saying that there aren't people who are more intelligent at ucl, nottingham, bath etc etc but lots of employers see oxbridge as a 'safe' choice. I know the thread is asking whether the degree itself is more valued, so you might say I've missed the point, but I honestly think its not really the content of the degree that matters, or the quality of teaching, but what you do with your degree. Just because there is a tutorial system at oxbridge (which I agree is really helpful and gives an advantage other unis unfortunately can't match) this doesn't mean the degree should be any LESS valued. I would put just as much work in if I didn't have this teaching, the tutorial system just enhances my essay, it doesn't mean I do less work.

Sorry this is really really rambly! I don't mean to come across as pro-oxbridge or anything as I have had no experience of other university courses, I'm just saying that to say oxbridge degrees should be LESS valued just because they have extra help - they're still intelligent students and capable of working on their own!! As are students at loads and loads of other unis!!
I wasn't saying that Oxbridge degrees should definitely be LESS valued, merely that why should people who go to Oxford or Cambridge (which are not right for everyone) be considered to have worked harder/be more intelligence than those who chose to go somewhere else. I wouldn't even agree that they are the best universities in the country - especially now I've heard in this thread that the teaching isn't that good - but that is MY opinion.

Truthfully, I just wanted to attack 'im so academic'. She annoys me. I love pointing out all the stupid things she says, as well as the fact she's about 12 so knows nothing of A Levels - let alone uni...
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hslt
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(Original post by manchild007)
This is the table I was on about - i.e. the one that completely flipped its methodology and b/c of this unnecessary and peculiar change, its major publishing partner walked out after over 10+ years of partnership. As I said, all league tables are flawed to some degree yes, but this one is just so much more flawed than any other.

I consider not being in the Top 5 dwarfing in my view, just b/c of the high regard Oxbridge is held on here - thats not to say they are not great universities or anything, just that people think of Oxbridge here as thee best, in that respect they're not, as there are a handful/few universities ahead of them - as every global league table supports.

I think we should leave it at this, as this is all we can get from the argument - all the universities are great obviously etc, but Oxbridge is not the best as that honour belongs to HYP.
Well I'd agree with as much as they get more research done, which is largely what the world tables are based on, and this is because they have vast budgets.

This is also why cambridge beat oxford in world - they are based on citations and published papers. Whereas oxford normally beat cambridge in the UK tables, which try to evaluate experience/teaching/employement.
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jubrilaya
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Overall Oxbridge have the hardest degrees and therefore are more valued, but if you look at subjects such as science, imperial college are much better, such as LSE with economics...
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hslt
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(Original post by manchild007)
This is the table I was on about - i.e. the one that completely flipped its methodology and b/c of this unnecessary and peculiar change, its major publishing partner walked out after over 10+ years of partnership. As I said, all league tables are flawed to some degree yes, but this one is just so much more flawed than any other.

I consider not being in the Top 5 dwarfing in my view, just b/c of the high regard Oxbridge is held on here - thats not to say they are not great universities or anything, just that people think of Oxbridge here as thee best, in that respect they're not, as there are a handful/few universities ahead of them - as every global league table supports.

I think we should leave it at this, as this is all we can get from the argument - all the universities are great obviously etc, but Oxbridge is not the best as that honour belongs to HYP.
Whats wrong with this league table then?
http://www.guardian.co.uk/news/datab...versities-2010 (also note the previous years)



Also...

http://www.timeshighereducation.co.u...09-Top200.html

http://www.timeshighereducation.co.u...p?typeCode=243

http://www.timeshighereducation.co.u...p?typeCode=144

http://www.timeshighereducation.co.u...p?typeCode=161

http://www.timeshighereducation.co.u...p?typeCode=175



In summary, before last year:

Cambridge 2nd for 4 years, 3rd once
Oxford 2nd or 3rd for 4 years, 4th once
Princeton and Yale not even in the top 6 every year, and below oxbridge every year


You can have harvard as very good, you can have yale as almost as good as harvard. But recent history has princeton as 'dwarfed' (i.e. not in the top five) and yale consistantly below cambridge.

Oxbridge might not be the best in the world, but they're definitely the best at some things.
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Student-1
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(Original post by SmallTownGirl)
I wasn't saying that Oxbridge degrees should definitely be LESS valued, merely that why should people who go to Oxford or Cambridge (which are not right for everyone) be considered to have worked harder/be more intelligence than those who chose to go somewhere else. I wouldn't even agree that they are the best universities in the country - especially now I've heard in this thread that the teaching isn't that good - but that is MY opinion.

Truthfully, I just wanted to attack 'im so academic'. She annoys me. I love pointing out all the stupid things she says, as well as the fact she's about 12 so knows nothing of A Levels - let alone uni...
This is going to sound really rude and conceited (I don't mean it to be!) but at my school it was typically (not always! But usually) the most intelligent people who applied to oxbridge, or at least those who worked hardest. And this is probably true for most schools. Of course oxbridge isn't for everyone and loads of people don't go either because its not for them or they unfortunately didn't get an offer even though they deserved one, but I think to say people at oxbridge should not be considered to be intelligent at all is slightly harsh!

Re: I'm so academic thing, haha fair enough
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Pendulum
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I haven't really read the whole thread, but I'm replying more specifically to "Is the teaching at oxbridge better?"

Having gone to a non-oxbridge university one of my lecturers is also a researcher at Oxford, and I would say he was the best lecturer/tutor in terms of learning that I've ever had.
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hslt
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(Original post by manchild007)
I think we should leave it at this, as this is all we can get from the argument - all the universities are great obviously etc, but Oxbridge is not the best as that honour belongs to HYP.
ps I chose not to leave it, because harvard you can justify, but princeton and yale you cannot. especially princeton!
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