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    I have heard many conflicting opinions on the level of competition to get into either uni to read maths.. some say they are more or less the same, whereas others say Camb is far more competitive.. But do you guys think this is true? I mean after all Camb requires you to sit the STEP and therefore wouldnt the Camb applicants be more confident in their mathematical skills, as opposed to Ox Maths appicants? please correct me if I am mistekaen.
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    Cam give out a lot of offers, on the assumption a fair amount will flop step.

    <3
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    Don't make the mistake of applying to the "easier" university.
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    As I said to you yesterday, I believe that any differences in reputation and competitiveness of applying to the courses are negligible at best. A quick google told me that last year 20.7% of cambridge applicants for maths were admitted, oxford's corresponding statistic was 20.2%, so make of that what you will...

    The best way to decide which to apply to is to visit both, have a good look at plenty of colleges and see which one you'd prefer to spend 3 or 4 years of your life in
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    I applied to Oxford because I wasn't confident I would meet an offer from Cambridge if I got one (STEP...). Turns out this was a good decision because I got into Oxford and met my offer (AAA), but only got a 3 in STEP so wouldn't have met a Cambridge offer.

    Oxford seemed pretty competitive when I was there for interviews - I think there was almost 50 of us interviewing for less than 10 places at St Johns! And from what I've heard Cambridge is similar.

    I think it comes down to firstly which uni you like more, then whether or not you think you'll be able to meet an offer if you were given one
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    It is harder to get an offer from Oxford, but the Cambridge offer is far harder.
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    In general, you're more likely to receive an offer from Cambridge, but as others have said the offer is much harder to meet (oxford offer is generally just AAA). Overall it probably averages out to around the same difficulty.
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    (Original post by Trimethylxanthine)
    I applied to Oxford because I wasn't confident I would meet an offer from Cambridge if I got one (STEP...). Turns out this was a good decision because I got into Oxford and met my offer (AAA), but only got a 3 in STEP so wouldn't have met a Cambridge offer.

    Oxford seemed pretty competitive when I was there for interviews - I think there was almost 50 of us interviewing for less than 10 places at St Johns! And from what I've heard Cambridge is similar.

    I think it comes down to firstly which uni you like more, then whether or not you think you'll be able to meet an offer if you were given one
    but surely in the do-or-die situation of getting the Cambridge offer, your STEP grade would have been higher because you would have put in the effort.


    Plus, my firm belief, is that if you can't get a 1 on STEP, then there is little hope of doing well at Oxford. Its just about practice.
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    (Original post by Dirac Delta Function)
    Plus, my firm belief, is that if you can't get a 1 on STEP, then there is little hope of doing well at Oxford. Its just about practice.
    I agree with this. STEP is hard, but with a hell of a lot of work it is very possible to do well in it, which is the sort of attitude you're almost certainly going to need to study maths at Oxford/Cambridge anyway...
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    (Original post by Dirac Delta Function)
    but surely in the do-or-die situation of getting the Cambridge offer, your STEP grade would have been higher because you would have put in the effort.


    Plus, my firm belief, is that if you can't get a 1 on STEP, then there is little hope of doing well at Oxford. Its just about practice.
    My STEP grade probably would have been higher in that situation, but having only got a low 1 in STEP III on one practice paper, I didn't want to risk missing out on Oxbridge due to one exam. Although there was still a chance I'd be accepted in the summer pool having missed STEP, AAA was definitely achievable, and since I couldn't apply to both I went for the one I was most likely to get into.

    As for little hope of doing well at Oxford - surely if this were true then Oxford would include STEP in its offers, as they want to have the students who will do best on the course.
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    (Original post by Trimethylxanthine)
    My STEP grade probably would have been higher in that situation, but having only got a low 1 in STEP III on one practice paper, I didn't want to risk missing out on Oxbridge due to one exam. Although there was still a chance I'd be accepted in the summer pool having missed STEP, AAA was definitely achievable, and since I couldn't apply to both I went for the one I was most likely to get into.

    As for little hope of doing well at Oxford - surely if this were true then Oxford would include STEP in its offers, as they want to have the students who will do best on the course.
    They dont include STEP in their offer because they feel that it puts alot of pressure on the students and also that most schools cannot provide the support/teaching.

    However they do recommend doing STEP. Even St Johns college say they a good grade in step may compensate for a B in the 3rd A-level subject (after maths + furthermaths).
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    Ok thanks a lot guys,, I guess I will have more thinks about it and then decide btw the two.. Btw just one more question please,, does Cambridge always give an offer based on STEP 2 and STEP 3? Is this the case although you don't take Further Maths?
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    (Original post by DiRai[Zera])
    Ok thanks a lot guys,, I guess I will have more thinks about it and then decide btw the two.. Btw just one more question please,, does Cambridge always give an offer based on STEP 2 and STEP 3? Is this the case although you don't take Further Maths?
    Cambridge require FM to AS, it's very unusual that people take it to AS and if so they would take STEP I and II but they would probably be a tad concerned as to why A2 was not taken.
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    (Original post by Small123)
    Cambridge require FM to AS, it's very unusual that people take it to AS and if so they would take STEP I and II but they would probably be a tad concerned as to why A2 was not taken.
    SOrry i forgot to specify my qualification, I take IB Maths at High Level, with no further maths..
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    I was always under the impression that oxford wasn't good for maths at all... but then again, I have been mistaken in the past
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    (Original post by DiRai[Zera])
    SOrry i forgot to specify my qualification, I take IB Maths at High Level, with no further maths..
    Hmm, I'm not an expert on IB so I can't answer that sorry.
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    (Original post by DiRai[Zera])
    SOrry i forgot to specify my qualification, I take IB Maths at High Level, with no further maths..
    (Original post by Sevenoaks Heads of Department comments on IB and A level – Sept 2005)
    However as a rule of thumb we would regard the content of IB Mathematics HL as more than A Level and perhaps similar to A Level + AS Further.
    Source
    This is taken from a report I think was written for Cambridge to be able to better compare the two programs(well it's hosted on the Cambridge website and specified in the Undergraduate Admissions Handbook 2009/10 so I guess it's worth paying attention to).
    Thus if it still is true I don't think you will be disadvantaged by the fact that you only do IB HL Math. What universities want to know is your talent in math, not how much you have been taught(though one must be taught math to a reasonable extent in order to assess his capabilities in it).
    Good luck, whatever university you apply to though!
    PS: I think that if you go through the The Cambridge 2010 Decision Thread you will see that students doing IB who got an offer for maths did not do IB Further Maths(also the offer was 39 in IB and 1,1 in STEP 1 and 2).
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    As sonofdot said, there are better ways to choose a university than admissions statistics.

    (Original post by anotheregostar)
    I was always under the impression that oxford wasn't good for maths at all... but then again, I have been mistaken in the past
    :lol:
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    Oxford is harder to get an offer, Cambridge is harder to get the grades of the offer. Its still about 5:1 ratio of applicants to places for both. If you have amazing past grades and think you'll ace the interview, oxford is probably easier. If you haven't got amazing grades, think you will do reasonably well at the interview BUT are willing to work at STEP, cambridge is probably easier. Either way its still tough.
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    (Original post by BJack)
    As sonofdot said, there are better ways to choose a university than admissions statistics.
    How can you argue with a man with Neutral Milk Hotel lyrics in his sig!?
 
 
 
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