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    (Original post by JamesMcAulay)
    Woah! Are you doing 5 A Levels? That's intense! What's your offer for, and which college? I'm starting this year, I've heard they don't like maths/science students taking gap years because your level of ability can drop!
    Yeah, finished 2 though so doing 3 now! Crazy!!
    Engineering in Fitz A*AA in maths, physics, chemistry. I got deferred so they mustn't mind too much, but they strongly suggest to do a maths course over the year to make sure the math skills don't drop.
    Shall see you in Fitz next year then!
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    Besides very good grades and extra-curriculars. What else do you require to get into Cambridge?

    Also, how would you compare the chances of acceptance in Cambridge against Harvard?
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    (Original post by Ajka)
    Yeah, finished 2 though so doing 3 now! Crazy!!
    Engineering in Fitz A*AA in maths, physics, chemistry. I got deferred so they mustn't mind too much, but they strongly suggest to do a maths course over the year to make sure the math skills don't drop.
    Shall see you in Fitz next year then!
    Woah, that's madness. I did Advanced Higher Music last year, which is piss easy (96% ), and I'm doing maths, stats and computing this year. Cannot WAIT for them to be finished! Awesome! Hope you get your grades.

    (Original post by hyn_shayan)
    Besides very good grades and extra-curriculars. What else do you require to get into Cambridge?

    Also, how would you compare the chances of acceptance in Cambridge against Harvard?
    A genuine interest in and passion for your subject. They want people who are going to get the most out of their courses and then do the most with their degrees. I don't know an awful lot about Harvard, but from what I've heard, it would be harder to get into than Cambridge. All depends on subject choice though...
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    (Original post by JamesMcAulay)
    Woah, that's madness. I did Advanced Higher Music last year, which is piss easy (96% ), and I'm doing maths, stats and computing this year. Cannot WAIT for them to be finished! Awesome! Hope you get your grades.



    A genuine interest in and passion for your subject. They want people who are going to get the most out of their courses and then do the most with their degrees. I don't know an awful lot about Harvard, but from what I've heard, it would be harder to get into than Cambridge. All depends on subject choice though...
    Yes, so you'd have to express that interest in your essay and, more importantly, your interview right? I'm starting Sixth Form next year and I'm aiming to get into a top college/university for an undergrad and then graduate degree in Physics. Personally, I would like to enter either Cambridge, Imperial, Harvard, MIT, or Caltech because most of them have brilliant Physics departments!

    So, you are saying that Harvard might be better than Cambridge? Or are you suggesting that due to more people applying at Harvard, acceptance rates are quite low?
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    (Original post by hyn_shayan)
    Yes, so you'd have to express that interest in your essay and, more importantly, your interview right? I'm starting Sixth Form next year and I'm aiming to get into a top college/university for an undergrad and then graduate degree in Physics. Personally, I would like to enter either Cambridge, Imperial, Harvard, MIT, or Caltech because most of them have brilliant Physics departments!

    So, you are saying that Harvard might be better than Cambridge? Or are you suggesting that due to more people applying at Harvard, acceptance rates are quite low?
    Yeah, the personal statement is a good way to get across how interested you are in your subject, but Cambridge put a lot of weighting on the interviews. For a science based subject, the interview can take the form of a test. I applied to Imperial and Cambridge, and had four interviews in total. (Bearing in mind that I applied for Computing, not Physics.) At Imperial, the interviewer spent five minutes going through my academic record and my future career plans, then launched straight into fifteen minutes of maths questions. With Cambridge, there was little in the way of preliminary chat, they just launched straight into various maths/logic/computing problems. I had a friend who applied for Physics at both Cambridge and Imperial, and he said his interviews were similar in format and style. However, different Colleges and Universities have different processes, so it's difficult to predict exactly what'll come up. Definitely express your interest in your personal statement though!

    I really have no clue about Harvard, sorry!
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    (Original post by JamesMcAulay)
    Yeah, the personal statement is a good way to get across how interested you are in your subject, but Cambridge put a lot of weighting on the interviews. For a science based subject, the interview can take the form of a test. I applied to Imperial and Cambridge, and had four interviews in total. (Bearing in mind that I applied for Computing, not Physics.) At Imperial, the interviewer spent five minutes going through my academic record and my future career plans, then launched straight into fifteen minutes of maths questions. With Cambridge, there was little in the way of preliminary chat, they just launched straight into various maths/logic/computing problems. I had a friend who applied for Physics at both Cambridge and Imperial, and he said his interviews were similar in format and style. However, different Colleges and Universities have different processes, so it's difficult to predict exactly what'll come up. Definitely express your interest in your personal statement though!

    I really have no clue about Harvard, sorry!
    Did they ask you Maths/Computing/Physics questions similar to the kind of difficulty you faced in A2 level or were they more demanding in terms of brain power:eek:?
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    (Original post by hyn_shayan)
    Did they ask you Maths/Computing/Physics questions similar to the kind of difficulty you faced in A2 level or were they more demanding in terms of brain power:eek:?
    I'm a Scottish student, so I have no idea what this "A2 level" concept is that you speak. I'm told Advanced Highers are more difficult though.

    The questions at Imperial were on trig stuff, it was pretty difficult but my tactic was to just keep talking through everything that went through my mind. A few stupid statements came out, but it seemed to work, I got an offer! At Cambridge I sat a maths aptitude test for Churchill which was really difficult, I was pretty stumped by a lot of the questions in it. I had a maths interview, which I really enjoyed, a lot of it was problem solving and some basic differentiation, it wasn't too bad. The next day I had a logic-based interview which was equally enjoyable, just more problem solving.

    I was unfortunate enough not to get an offer from Churchill. However, they did put me in the pool (do you know what that is?) and I got fished out by Fitzwilliam who gave me three days notice that they wanted me to travel the length of the country for an interview. I kinda panicked the moment I sat in the interview chair and my mind blanked; the questions weren't too difficult, but I was fluffing up badly. I must have done something right though, they gave me an offer the next day.

    There's nothing mind-bending in any of the interviews, but they will stretch you, just so the interviewers can see what you're capable of.
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    (Original post by JamesMcAulay)
    I'm a Scottish student, so I have no idea what this "A2 level" concept is that you speak. I'm told Advanced Highers are more difficult though.

    The questions at Imperial were on trig stuff, it was pretty difficult but my tactic was to just keep talking through everything that went through my mind. A few stupid statements came out, but it seemed to work, I got an offer! At Cambridge I sat a maths aptitude test for Churchill which was really difficult, I was pretty stumped by a lot of the questions in it. I had a maths interview, which I really enjoyed, a lot of it was problem solving and some basic differentiation, it wasn't too bad. The next day I had a logic-based interview which was equally enjoyable, just more problem solving.

    I was unfortunate enough not to get an offer from Churchill. However, they did put me in the pool (do you know what that is?) and I got fished out by Fitzwilliam who gave me three days notice that they wanted me to travel the length of the country for an interview. I kinda panicked the moment I sat in the interview chair and my mind blanked; the questions weren't too difficult, but I was fluffing up badly. I must have done something right though, they gave me an offer the next day.

    There's nothing mind-bending in any of the interviews, but they will stretch you, just so the interviewers can see what you're capable of.
    Ah so for a Physics I'll probably have an interview to do with Maths, Physics and some logic. Do you think that me doing Further Maths which is an A-Level will benefit me significantly?
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    (Original post by hyn_shayan)
    Ah so for a Physics I'll probably have an interview to do with Maths, Physics and some logic. Do you think that me doing Further Maths which is an A-Level will benefit me significantly?
    In Scotland, we have Applied Maths, and there are two options: Mechanics and Statistics. My friend who applied for Physics took Mechanics and I think it definitely helped him. I'm really not sure about Physics requirements though, you'd be best checking the prospectus or the website!
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    (Original post by hyn_shayan)
    Ah so for a Physics I'll probably have an interview to do with Maths, Physics and some logic. Do you think that me doing Further Maths which is an A-Level will benefit me significantly?
    Doing Further Maths will definitely benefit you.

    For Cambridge, to study Physics you will probably apply for Natural Sciences (there is no Physics course, you will have to study Physics, Maths and 2 other sciences (can be chemistry, geology, materials,...) in the first year, then specialise in Physics for following years. (You can also apply for Mathematics with Physics so you will do 75% Maths, 25% Physics in first year then switch to Natsci Tripos to do Physics if you don't want to study other sciences in the first year)

    For Natural sciences, you can be asked to do a test at interview, or to do the TSA or just the interview, this depends on which college you choose. The interview(s) will definitely be full of Maths and Physics

    Have a look at the Cambridge website for details
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    (Original post by ArchedEdge)
    Towards Pragmatism by Patrick Baert

    It's essentially your entire first term lecture course, in a concise and easy to read manner. If any specific parts interest you then go and read the original texts.
    Cheers! Did you find PPS challenging in the work load or is it okay? Plus, will not doing politics affect me in the first year? I'm thinking about doing education and bio anth instead of all three PPS subjects.
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    (Original post by Jacke02)
    Cheers! Did you find PPS challenging in the work load or is it okay? Plus, will not doing politics affect me in the first year? I'm thinking about doing education and bio anth instead of all three PPS subjects.
    It's challenging in the sense that you're doing 4 completely unrelated papers, so you'll be having to think a lot in different sort of styles (especially from an anth perspective - I did soc anth though). One problem I find is that some names crop up in several papers, then it starts to get a bit confusing as to why they're in soc and why they're in politics etc

    And not doing politics won't affect you at all!

    PPS has a more "flexible" work schedule, in that you'll probs have more free time on your hands compared to other subjects if you want to, because it all depends on how much reading you do. You can get away with reading only a little for each essay, but you'll pay for it eventually :p:
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    (Original post by ArchedEdge)
    You don't really need to do any pre-reading for PPS.

    If you do want to (it can vaguely help you because it saves you a little time), just ask and I can suggest you some stuff
    Yeh, being the lazy arse that I am, I do want to save some time so I can laze a little later. What knowledge are you suggesting from? you study PPS at the moment?
    Thanks ;D
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    (Original post by Jacke02)
    My offer's A* in psychology and two As in maths, physics and english lit. Im on track for an A in maths which im hardly worried about, physics should be fine but psychology can be marked very badly... what's your offer? Mines not to bad compared to those having to get A*s in further maths and such.

    And i don't think they want you living out of college accomodation in the first year or the last year. In the first year they want you to meet new people, and i was told in the last year they like having you in college accomodation for finals and looking after you during them. I don't know anyone who hasn't lived out of college accomodation. Personally i don't want to, Corpus Christi is right next to the lecture halls for PPS and there's a new college library.
    My offer is unconditional cos im on a gap year and i got 43points at IB. So i'm safe which is great, but still unsure on what to do about this accomodation situation, also cos I live in Italy, so all holiday's and maybe some weekends i'm gonna be going home...and family will visit quite a lot which is just annoying if im in the college...hmmmmm i'll see!
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    (Original post by sandyefs)
    Yeh, being the lazy arse that I am, I do want to save some time so I can laze a little later. What knowledge are you suggesting from? you study PPS at the moment?
    Thanks ;D
    Current PPS student, I do all 3 core papers then do soc anth as my 4th.


    (Original post by sandyefs)
    My offer is unconditional cos im on a gap year and i got 43points at IB. So i'm safe which is great, but still unsure on what to do about this accomodation situation, also cos I live in Italy, so all holiday's and maybe some weekends i'm gonna be going home...and family will visit quite a lot which is just annoying if im in the college...hmmmmm i'll see!
    You won't really have time to go home on the weekend.

    There's nothing wrong with living in the college? You can live out if you want, but if you do you'll be living separate from all the other freshers, and chances are you'll end up segregated from them. Plenty of internationals live in college accommodation and have no problems about it - I think you're probably overestimating how troublesome it'll be to live in college...and your family will want to see the college anyway, so you'll have to end up taking them there in the end.

    What college are you at?
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    (Original post by ArchedEdge)
    Current PPS student, I do all 3 core papers then do soc anth as my 4th.




    You won't really have time to go home on the weekend.

    There's nothing wrong with living in the college? You can live out if you want, but if you do you'll be living separate from all the other freshers, and chances are you'll end up segregated from them. Plenty of internationals live in college accommodation and have no problems about it - I think you're probably overestimating how troublesome it'll be to live in college...and your family will want to see the college anyway, so you'll have to end up taking them there in the end.

    What college are you at?


    I'll see... I'm at Selwyn, how about you?
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    (Original post by sandyefs)
    I'll see... I'm at Selwyn, how about you?
    I'm at Caius, but I know all the Selwyn PPSers who are in my year - we share the same supervisors for several papers

    What specific reasons are you not too keen on college accommodation for?
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    (Original post by ArchedEdge)
    I'm at Caius, but I know all the Selwyn PPSers who are in my year - we share the same supervisors for several papers

    What specific reasons are you not too keen on college accommodation for?
    Well aside from the superficial reason that cripps court isn't exactly charming...I cant be self-catered, which for me is a bit of a challenge as im rather fussy and i eat around 9.30-10pm...and then i will be travelling etc and i would like to just have more independence, like having family over etc....

    i mean what a typical 1st year schedule for a week...could you give me an idea?

    to sleep off-site is just an idea...i do see how difficult and inconvenient it is btw. but anyway
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    (Original post by sandyefs)
    Well aside from the superficial reason that cripps court isn't exactly charming...I cant be self-catered, which for me is a bit of a challenge as im rather fussy and i eat around 9.30-10pm...and then i will be travelling etc and i would like to just have more independence, like having family over etc....

    i mean what a typical 1st year schedule for a week...could you give me an idea?

    to sleep off-site is just an idea...i do see how difficult and inconvenient it is btw. but anyway
    Haha fair enough, Cripps definitely isn't the best looking place of all, but from what I've seen/heard, it is pretty nice nonetheless...just from the outside it looks a bit bad... :p:

    And everyone has the option to be self catered, just a lot of people find it's hassle to cook a meal every night etc, so often they just go to Hall instead - it's fairly cheap, the food's good, and most of your friends will be going so it's a good way to socialise as well. But rest assured you can self-cater all you want!

    There's never a problem about bringing people over to stay/visit, a lot of colleges do have rules about guests etc, but no-one ever really listens or bothers. And I seriously doubt you'll be travelling either, there's really just not a huge amount of time to do it! What sort of travelling were you planning?

    In terms of schedule, you'll have about 8 hours of lectures a week, probably only about 2 nine o'clocks a week. You'll have supervisions most likely every 2/3 weeks per paper, so it works about roughly about doing 2 essays per week.

    Each essay you can read as much as you want/don't want to, but you'll probably have to read the set text for each essay, as well as a range of chapters from other sources.

    If you do extracurricular stuff to a decent level - you'll likely find yourself constantly busy (but in a good way). Either way, pretty much everyone in Cambridge uses their weekends to catch up on work they should've done in the week itself.

    Socially we go out on the weekdays, then Fri/Sat night there's nothing to do so people tend to buckle down and do their work then. Late night essays aren't uncommon, especially the night before the essay's due.
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    (Original post by sandyefs)
    Well aside from the superficial reason that cripps court isn't exactly charming...I cant be self-catered, which for me is a bit of a challenge as im rather fussy and i eat around 9.30-10pm...and then i will be travelling etc and i would like to just have more independence, like having family over etc....

    i mean what a typical 1st year schedule for a week...could you give me an idea?

    to sleep off-site is just an idea...i do see how difficult and inconvenient it is btw. but anyway
    I know you seem quite set on living out and you have your reasons, but I really would advise you to reconsider. I think you could feel quite isolated from college life if you choose to live out, and you miss out on the benefits of cheaper accommodation and proximity to the library and so on. A lot of people worry about self catering and independence and things before arriving, but you'll find that once you're here it actually becomes more important to be in college and have that community and all the facilities around you. If you're in the middle of an essay crisis it's great to be able to run down to hall for a quick meal and then back to your room, and you may find that you don't want to cook so much when you start because eating is a social occasion, and when people are working that hard and aren't always around outside of meal times it's not one to pass up.

    I'm also a fussy eater and I survive on hall food and with only a microwave for self-catering (I don't eat fish, rice or anything with too much sauce on, for example, and that isn't nearly the extent of my fussiness). You just adapt. It's the same with the meal times - before I arrived at Cambridge I ate pretty early because I have younger siblings who had early bedtimes. At Cam I usually eat around 6/7ish, but on my year abroad in Moscow I don't get home until 6pm at the earliest so usually won't eat until about 9. I think you'll find that your body will adjust to whenever food is available!

    Having family over won't be a problem, although you'll find that you won't have time for too many visitors or too much travelling during term time. You have the long holidays for that, but term is usually a case of sitting down with your first essay in week 1 and then just blundering through day after day until you suddenly look up and realise it's week 7. I wouldn't make that your main consideration for living out tbh. I also find that most colleges allow you a decent amount of independence. I've had guests come and go as they pleased, and I've never had a porter question me about my whereabouts or why I'm leaving college at 1am or anything like that. Unless something seems to be affecting your work you are generally left alone.

    I think you should try living in college for a term, so that you can make friends and see if it's workable. Then if it's not working for you make a decision based on that. I think it would be much wiser to give it a go first so that you are making an informed choice
 
 
 
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