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    (Original post by souktik)
    Haha, no, I disagree. It's unwise. I wrote my PS on the 14th or 15th of October, so I wasn't really thinking. I just knew that I had to get it done.

    Why? Were you lying? Otherwise I can't see why it would be unwise. Don't brown-nose the other dude, if you think it was stupid you wouldn't have put it in anyway.
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    (Original post by ZafarS)
    Why? Were you lying? Otherwise I can't see why it would be unwise. Don't brown-nose the other dude, if you think it was stupid you wouldn't have put it in anyway.
    Well that escalated quickly!


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    (Original post by revelry26)
    Well that escalated quickly!


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    Lol, it didn't. I just asked him because there is no logic in what Noble and other guy (forgot his name) are saying.

    If you actually know a topic, what is the harm in mentioning it? Being asked questions about it shouldn't be bad, because if you know the topic as you say, you should be able to answer questions about it.
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    (Original post by ZafarS)
    Why? Were you lying? Otherwise I can't see why it would be unwise. Don't brown-nose the other dude, if you think it was stupid you wouldn't have put it in anyway.
    It's unwise because you're making yourself vulnerable. I didn't think it through while I was writing. If you claim to have a basic idea of something truthfully, there still remains a possibility that you'll panic during the interview and get stuff wrong. That won't create a great impression, will it? Also, the tutors are looking to take you out of your comfort zone. Mentioning stuff like real analysis or Fourier just makes it easy for them. And getting stuff you know wrong early on will affect the rest of your performance more than messing up stuff you don't know.
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    (Original post by ZafarS)
    Lol, it didn't. I just asked him because there is no logic in what Noble and other guy (forgot his name) are saying.

    If you actually know a topic, what is the harm in mentioning it? Being asked questions about it shouldn't be bad, because if you know the topic as you say, you should be able to answer questions about it.
    The problem is that the tutors won't know the extent of your knowledge regarding the topic as it isn't in the standard syllabus so if they ask you a few questions from areas of the topic that you haven't done yet and you can't answer it you don't really have any substantial proof of having done that topic and you risk looking like you haven't studied it and are lying.


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    (Original post by ZafarS)
    Bullcrap. I doub the tutors are stupid enough the assume I have a graduate level knowledge of PDEs just because I mention it on my PS. What, is he going to ask me about current research? No.

    I actually mentioned on my PS what you also say. I said that my self-studies show that I can self-study subjects, which is imporant. If I am going to be asked to solve certain PDEs using seperation of variables, method of characteristics or integral transform or whatever, I can do it. If I am going to be asked the intuition behind simpler PDEs like the wave equation, I'll happily do it. If I am going to be asked to comment on Terence Tao's latest research in the field, hell nah. But that is not going to happen.

    So I completely disagree. If you know something, flaunt it. You seem to be assuming that me and that other dude don't really know what we mention in our PS. Of course that would be extremely dumb. But we do. I'd be happy if he asked me anything about Fourier series, or elementary set theory or whatever. It means I can distinghuish myself. And in my opinion a tough mechanics problem is not easier than an average problem in Fourier analysis.
    What has graduate level knowledge of PDEs got to do with anything? The point is they understand PDEs inside out, you don't. Mentioning it on your PS just gives them ammo to really test your understanding of what's going on in Fourier analysis/PDEs if they decide to question you on it. While it can be an opportunity to shine, it's mostly an opportunity to show them you don't really have an underlying knowledge of what's going on. They're not, in mathematics at least, going to be interested to know you understand basic definitions and standard theorems and their proofs, because anyone can do that - they look for real understanding and it's unlikely you've looked at it for long enough to gain any understanding that is going to be of interest - precisely why it isn't a good idea to mention it.

    In regards to "assuming we wouldn't know what we mention in our PS" - well souktik couldn't remember what connectedness was, which is a fundamental, basic concept in metric spaces. If someone wrote on their PS that they have been self-studying metric spaces and it turns out they don't understand what connectedness/compactness is, it doesn't look very impressive to a tutor.

    Having said that, I don't think you mentioning Fourier series is too stupid given that it's by far the easiest topic studied in the first year undergrad maths and could be taught to most Further Maths A-Level students without much hassle.

    Also, I have said this already, it's still very unlikely they'll pick up on it - firstly because they won't care enough about the PS to read it that indepth but also because they'll have a set of problems they want to go through with every interviewee.
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    (Original post by souktik)
    It's unwise because you're making yourself vulnerable. I didn't think it through while I was writing. If you claim to have a basic idea of something truthfully, there still remains a possibility that you'll panic during the interview and get stuff wrong. That won't create a great impression, will it? Also, the tutors are looking to take you out of your comfort zone. Mentioning stuff like real analysis or Fourier just makes it easy for them. And getting stuff you know wrong early on will affect the rest of your performance more than messing up stuff you don't know.
    Panicking can happen with any topic, not just topics you self-studied. That is not at all restricted to topics you aren't taught at school. For me, I'd say self-studying teaches me better than high school books. Because at least my math high school books don't prove anything, you should assume everything, from stuff like the quadratic equation to riemann sums etc. But when I for example learned linear algebra, I rigorously proved almost everything I could prove, while I never do this when I study a topic at school, even though that topic might be more elementary, such as basic calculus.

    Also, I don't know where you've got that idea from. Tutors want to select the best students. They won't go HAM on you basic you mention certain topics you studied. They'll ask you questions about it, but it's not like they'll ask you straight away to prove Goldbach's conjecture if you mention you're interested in number theory, or whatever.
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    how about we all just shut up and stop talking about this exam?
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    (Original post by Hasan24)
    how about we all just shut up and stop talking about this exam?
    The thread has been formed for exam discussion so that'd kind of defeat the purpose :P


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    (Original post by revelry26)
    The thread has been formed for exam discussion so that'd kind of defeat the purpose :P


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    it makes me feel nervous. not even applying to Oxford, i'm applying to imperial (Cambridge is better)
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    (Original post by Hasan24)
    how about we all just shut up and stop talking about this exam?
    You could... not read the thread?
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    (Original post by Noble.)
    What has graduate level knowledge of PDEs got to do with anything? The point is they understand PDEs inside out, you don't. Mentioning it on your PS just gives them ammo to really test your understanding of what's going on in Fourier analysis/PDEs if they decide to question you on it. While it can be an opportunity to shine, it's mostly an opportunity to show them you don't really have an underlying knowledge of what's going on. They're not, in mathematics at least, going to be interested to know you understand basic definitions and standard theorems and their proofs, because anyone can do that - they look for real understanding and it's unlikely you've looked at it for long enough to gain any understanding that is going to be of interest - precisely why it isn't a good idea to mention it.

    In regards to "assuming we wouldn't know what we mention in our PS" - well souktik couldn't remember what connectedness was, which is a fundamental, basic concept in metric spaces. If someone wrote on their PS that they have been self-studying metric spaces and it turns out they don't understand what connectedness/compactness is, it doesn't look very impressive to a tutor.

    Having said that, I don't think you mentioning Fourier series is too stupid given that it's by far the easiest topic studied in the first year undergrad maths and could be taught to most Further Maths A-Level students without much hassle.

    Also, I have said this already, it's still very unlikely they'll pick up on it - firstly because they won't care enough about the PS to read it that indepth but also because they'll have a set of problems they want to go through with every interviewee.

    That is flawed logic. They also know more about mechanics, electromagnetism, basically any topic in physics or mathematics.

    Also, I mentioned Fourier analysis in my PS, not Fourier series per se. Of course I didn't mention that I know Fourier series, that's like mentioning you know Taylor series, which I believe in the British curriculum you are expected to know. So yeah, I'm stupid.
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    (Original post by ZafarS)
    That is flawed logic. They also know more about mechanics, electromagnetism, basically any topic in physics or mathematics.

    Also, I mentioned Fourier analysis in my PS, not Fourier series per se. Of course I didn't mention that I know Fourier series, that's like mentioning you know Taylor series, which I believe in the British curriculum you are expected to know. So yeah, I'm stupid.
    I'd trust Noble on what the tutors might cook up in interviews since he's experienced it first hand and knows plenty of tutors.
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    (Original post by revelry26)
    The thread has been formed for exam discussion so that'd kind of defeat the purpose :P


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    (Original post by Noble.)
    You could... not read the thread?
    haters gonna hate :P
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    (Original post by Hasan24)
    it makes me feel nervous. not even applying to Oxford, i'm applying to imperial (Cambridge is better)
    If you're not applying to oxford then I don't see why it should make you nervous :P I'm guessing imperial MAT requirements will probably be lower than Oxford requirements. As for the Cambridge comment , to each his own !


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    (Original post by revelry26)
    The problem is that the tutors won't know the extent of your knowledge regarding the topic as it isn't in the standard syllabus so if they ask you a few questions from areas of the topic that you haven't done yet and you can't answer it you don't really have any substantial proof of having done that topic and you risk looking like you haven't studied it and are lying.


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    This is actually the first valid point I've heard. Of course, that's the risk, but that's why I was pretty specific in my PS.
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    (Original post by ZafarS)
    That is flawed logic. They also know more about mechanics, electromagnetism, basically any topic in physics or mathematics.

    Also, I mentioned Fourier analysis in my PS, not Fourier series per se. Of course I didn't mention that I know Fourier series, that's like mentioning you know Taylor series, which I believe in the British curriculum you are expected to know. So yeah, I'm stupid.
    It isn't flawed. They know about other topics, but they aren't going to "out of the blue" test you on them. Tutors come up with their interview questions in advance, and carefully pick topics that doesn't require much knowledge (so they can teach you quickly) and questions you on it to gain some insight into your understanding and thought process. However, if you're in an interview and the tutor reads you're interested in something and decides to test you on it, the questions are not going to be so carefully picked and they're going to be picked in a much less "A-Level applicant" mindset, so they could unfairly pick quite advanced questions within that field without realising you'd need to do a significant amount of reading to get to a point where you could understand it.
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    (Original post by yl95)
    I'd trust Noble on what the tutors might cook up in interviews since he's experienced it first hand and knows plenty of tutors.
    Stupid appeal to authority. We're having a healthy discussion. I understand his point, but it based on a single premise that may or may not be true, depending on the student.

    His whole point bowls down to: "If you don't really know a topic, don't say you do'', which of course is pretty logical.
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    (Original post by revelry26)
    If you're not applying to oxford then I don't see why it should make you nervous :P I'm guessing imperial MAT requirements will probably be lower than Oxford requirements. As for the Cambridge comment , to each his own !


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    yeah, i guess nervousness is just an automatic feeling after an exam. i'm so happy that i completely finished question 4 though.
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    was on 99 posts, so this is a random post to make it 100. woop woop:bl:
 
 
 
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