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    (Original post by Minta)
    Not all that often, maybe, but just look at the kind of personal attention undergraduates get at Oxbridge which they don't receive at other unis ie weekly individual/pair/small group tutorials and supervisions. This system is tailor made for the individual, and if a student is having trouble grasping a concept, they can ask to discuss it during the supervision/tutorial. The system does push them extremely hard, and I know from accounts of friends at Oxbridge that they have their fair share of indifferent teaching, but students at these unis ceratinly do get more personal support than those elsewhere. Add to that the fact that come exam time tutors will arrange revision classes, and the fact that in some subjects ie ASNC, the exam questions aren't that hard and don't change that much from year to year because of the limited scope of the subject, and it's small wonder they tend to do well.
    Minta. Are you trying to say that a students qualifications before university does not determine their achievements afterwards due to teh design of the university tuition system? If so, Id like to ask you why it is unfair of the university to chose students which may have weaker qualifications? The arguments seem to contradict each other.
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    (Original post by lizzzy`)
    Didn't you know about the matriculation offer? They only give it to EXCEPTIONAL students who have n number of A*, n number of A-Levels at A grade. It's so that the pressure is off the student who will be expected to do very well at the A-Level exams anyway.

    Don't want to get your hopes up, but it is offered to 1/3 of Christ's applicants regardless of subject. But usually Christ's ask for AAA/AAAA in Medicine.
    Exceptional students? Damn, that's me out the running! I didn't know about that! V slow! Is it just fro Medicine? I'm Natsci anyway! Are you medicine?
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    (Original post by Jonatan)
    Scanner. Personally, I think OXford and Cambridge has the most fair addmisiion system. After all, at all other universities, whether you get an offer or not pretty much depends on what predictions your teatchers make and what you write in your personal statement. This means basicly that if you are lucky enough to get a teatcher whi makes a nice prediction you have a greater chance of being accepted. Now THATS objective! Interviews are much more fair in that way as it gives the tutors a chance to actually see the students they are going to teatch and determine if those predicted grades were actually deserved or if the student has just gotn them because he/she had a nice teatcher and learned how to suck up.
    i agree, i dont think that the admission should just be a lottery, because u have obscenly (sp?) clever people, who have no communication skills etc, and so wldnt hold their own in the one 2 one tutorials. i think the interviews r fine how they r (although i may disagree after i have got my reply )
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    (Original post by scanner)
    I think you will find that the boat is being rocked just a bit. The Govt have already asked Oxford and Cambridge to look at their procedures. It's also one of the attractions of 'top up fees' to the Govt as they will only be allowed if a university can demonstrate that their admissions are fair. Very few people have picked up on this but it's quite a big stick to beat both these unis if they do not modernise.
    As many of the post on here demonstrate many Oxbridge tutors are overusing the interview to look for very nebulous attributes such as teachability and potential. A system that benefits some who can perform well in interview but not the best way of selecting those who will perform well in an Oxbridge degree. Too many middle class blaggers get in when they shouldn't.
    Anyone else notice that Oxford and Cambridge get beaten with the unfair admissions stick so much more than other 'elite' universities?
    Was talking to my tutor the other day and he said that because of the (generally pig ignorant) annual whinge on the subject by certain sections of the media and opportunistic politicians he predicts that in the future Oxford will end up having to introduce written tests for most subjects, becsue they are seen as less subjective, and its easier and less controversial to reject someone for a bad test score than a crap interview performance. Which is ironic seeing how one of the reasons written tests were mostly abandoned in the first place was because they were perceived to disadvantage applicants who hadnt received a great education.
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    (Original post by Jonatan)
    Scanner. Personally, I think OXford and Cambridge has the most fair addmisiion system. After all, at all other universities, whether you get an offer or not pretty much depends on what predictions your teatchers make and what you write in your personal statement. This means basicly that if you are lucky enough to get a teatcher whi makes a nice prediction you have a greater chance of being accepted. Now THATS objective! Interviews are much more fair in that way as it gives the tutors a chance to actually see the students they are going to teatch and determine if those predicted grades were actually deserved or if the student has just gotn them because he/she had a nice teatcher and learned how to suck up.
    Total nonsense."if you are lucky enough to get a teatcher whi makes a nice prediction you have a greater chance of being accepted".....how about...if you are lucky enough to get an interviewer that likes you you have a greater chance of being accepted"?

    Personally, I think teachers are better placed to comment on potential etc. However, I do accept that some teachers will get it wrong. But they are less likely to get it wrong than interviewers who have never met the candidated before!
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    (Original post by lala)
    Anyone else notice that Oxford and Cambridge get beaten with the unfair admissions stick so much more than other 'elite' universities?
    Was talking to my tutor the other day and he said that because of the (generally pig ignorant) annual whinge on the subject by certain sections of the media and opportunistic politicians he predicts that in the future Oxford will end up having to introduce written tests for most subjects, becsue they are seen as less subjective, and its easier and less controversial to reject someone for a bad test score than a crap interview performance. Which is ironic seeing how one of the reasons written tests were mostly abandoned in the first place was because they were perceived to disadvantage applicants who hadnt received a great education.
    Just be glad yoru not living in Norway. Here we have parties which actually want to ban examinations and the use of grades because they say it is unfair to those students who get bad grades.... The last thing they did was to decide that addmision to high school should be based on where you lived rather than your primary grades. No strange Oxford / Cambridge refuse to accept students only holding a Norwegian diploma...
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    Ignoring the twice-yearly sniping at Oxford and Cambridge for being 'elitist' - good luck to everyone who applied to Cambridge! And well done to those of you who are holding offers from Oxford; commiserations to those who aren't.

    Rooting for you Cambridge people
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    (Original post by lala)
    Anyone else notice that Oxford and Cambridge get beaten with the unfair admissions stick so much more than other 'elite' universities?
    Was talking to my tutor the other day and he said that because of the (generally pig ignorant) annual whinge on the subject by certain sections of the media and opportunistic politicians he predicts that in the future Oxford will end up having to introduce written tests for most subjects, becsue they are seen as less subjective, and its easier and less controversial to reject someone for a bad test score than a crap interview performance. Which is ironic seeing how one of the reasons written tests were mostly abandoned in the first place was because they were perceived to disadvantage applicants who hadnt received a great education.
    Written tests for all subjects should be introduced. The main indicators of suitability should be the academic stuff eg, grades, essays etc., the results of the written test, the referees comments, and only if necessary, interview observations. Interviews should be more transparent, and less important. Those who have not received a great education should be given the opportunity to make this clear. Then the final decision should take this into account.

    The same should apply to any university who uses Interview.
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    (Original post by lala)
    Anyone else notice that Oxford and Cambridge get beaten with the unfair admissions stick so much more than other 'elite' universities?
    Was talking to my tutor the other day and he said that because of the (generally pig ignorant) annual whinge on the subject by certain sections of the media and opportunistic politicians he predicts that in the future Oxford will end up having to introduce written tests for most subjects, becsue they are seen as less subjective, and its easier and less controversial to reject someone for a bad test score than a crap interview performance. Which is ironic seeing how one of the reasons written tests were mostly abandoned in the first place was because they were perceived to disadvantage applicants who hadnt received a great education.
    Yes some of the criticism is unfiar and ill informed but too many tutors at Oxford have the line that it is all unfair and ill informed. It isn't. There is much good about the current system in that the vast majority of tutors work really hard to ensure that their individual part is performed fairly and with some humanity. I know that the time mine spent on admissions was far greater than many would imagine and much more than the time taken in most other unis. But the problem is the college based system of admissions - it selects the students who the tutors want to teach not the best candidates across the university for that subject that year. It gets most of them but plenty of capable candidates are bypassed by those who are simply better able to think on their feet. An important skill, but ultimately not the main arbiter of academic success or potential.

    Alan Ryan, the Warden of New makes a similar point about interviews see this old article:

    http://education.guardian.co.uk/oxbr...326376,00.html
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    (Original post by Mentally Ill)
    Total nonsense."if you are lucky enough to get a teatcher whi makes a nice prediction you have a greater chance of being accepted".....how about...if you are lucky enough to get an interviewer that likes you you have a greater chance of being accepted"?

    Personally, I think teachers are better placed to comment on potential etc. However, I do accept that some teachers will get it wrong. But they are less likely to get it wrong than interviewers who have never met the candidated before!
    You know, my father is a bio phycisist and he told me this story how he got a Girl with top grades for an interview (Over in sweden). Turned out she had not even understood the concepts behind Ohms law (This is almost down at primary level) and it was quite obvious she had gotn the grades just by memorising the syllabus. This is basicly why collages like to have interviews. They want to know WHY a student got the predicted grades they did. They woant dismiss you just because they did not like some of your answers on an interview, they just want to make sure that the predicted grades are not just utter nonsense, and that the student actually has some sense in his head. If you have AAA in your A levels, they are unlikely to reject you unless you show you're a complete moron on the interview. The interviews are used as a complement to the grades, not as a replacement. It gives the collage a chance to chose among thousands of students with very similar predicted grades.
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    (Original post by Jonatan)
    Minta. Are you trying to say that a students qualifications before university does not determine their achievements afterwards due to teh design of the university tuition system? If so, Id like to ask you why it is unfair of the university to chose students which may have weaker qualifications? The arguments seem to contradict each other.
    I wasn't suggesting anything along the lines of the idea that students with higher grades should get into Oxbridge in preference to someone who had shown at interview that they were better suited to the tutorial and supervision systems. My point was more focused on the methods used to teach Oxbridge students, not to select them. MadNatSci commented that the high number of Oxbridge students who get 1s and 2:1s proves that the selection criteria couldn't be that flawed and I was just trying to suggest why this should be the case by citing the amount of personal support which underpins Oxbridge students throughout their undergraduate careers.
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    (Original post by Jonatan)
    You know, my father is a bio phycisist and he told me this story how he got a Girl with top grades for an interview (Over in sweden). Turned out she had not even understood the concepts behind Ohms law (This is almost down at primary level) and it was quite obvious she had gotn the grades just by memorising the syllabus. This is basicly why collages like to have interviews. They want to know WHY a student got the predicted grades they did. They woant dismiss you just because they did not like some of your answers on an interview, they just want to make sure that the predicted grades are not just utter nonsense, and that the student actually has some sense in his head. If you have AAA in your A levels, they are unlikely to reject you unless you show you're a complete moron on the interview. The interviews are used as a complement to the grades, not as a replacement. It gives the collage a chance to chose among thousands of students with very similar predicted grades.
    If this were truly how interviews were used, then that would be wonderful. However, I am pretty sure that the interview carries more weight that you are willing to accept (at least at oxbridge anyway)
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    (Original post by Mentally Ill)
    Written tests for all subjects should be introduced. The main indicators of suitability should be the academic stuff eg, grades, essays etc., the results of the written test, the referees comments, and only if necessary, interview observations. Interviews should be more transparent, and less important. Those who have not received a great education should be given the opportunity to make this clear. Then the final decision should take this into account.

    The same should apply to any university who uses Interview.

    Haven't we covered this many times before?! Exam grades tell the interviewers nothing. Everyone applying has bundles of top grades. Essays that are submitted are not necessarily written by the candidate - there's no way of knowing that for sure. Written tests set by the college are all well and good but can be, and are, coached for. All teachers are likely to give glowing references so although this is an important factor it shouldn't be too powerful.

    Interviews show how the person responds under pressure - important for exams and life in general I'm afraid - and give the interviewers an indication of how the candidate thinks, which is what they're after. Interviews are in the style of the supervisions. If you can't cope with the interviews you won't cope with the supervsions. And if you can't think in the right way you won't cope at Cambridge or Oxford: you'll get left behind.
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    (Original post by scanner)
    Yes some of the criticism is unfiar and ill informed but too many tutors at Oxford have the line that it is all unfair and ill informed. It isn't. There is much good about the current system in that the vast majority of tutors work really hard to ensure that their individual part is performed fairly and with some humanity. I know that the time mine spent on admissions was far greater than many would imagine and much more than the time taken in most other unis. But the problem is the college based system of admissions - it selects the students who the tutors want to teach not the best candidates across the university for that subject that year. It gets most of them but plenty of capable candidates are bypassed by those who are simply better able to think on their feet. An important skill, but ultimately not the main arbiter of academic success or potential.

    Alan Ryan, the Warden of New makes a similar point about interviews see this old article:

    http://education.guardian.co.uk/oxbr...326376,00.html
    Interviews main objective is to filter among those student with similar qualifications and to sort out those who did not really deserve the predictions the teatchers gave. Beleive it or not, but most tutors are able to tell if you understood the stuff, or simply memorised it for the exam. Collages use interviews rather than simply choosing randomly among students with very similar predicted grades. After all, a student with AAB is not neccessarly significantly less academicly suited than someone with AAA. Remember that Cambridge and Oxford can get up to a dousin applicants per place, al of them with straight As in their predicted. Also, they are not likely to dismiss a student with AAA predicted grades just because they were nervous on the interview. They merely want to knwo that you got yoru grades because you have an unerstanding in the field of studdy, and not just because you memorized the answers three days before the exam.
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    (Original post by MadNatSci)
    Haven't we covered this many times before?! Exam grades tell the interviewers nothing. Everyone applying has bundles of top grades. Essays that are submitted are not necessarily written by the candidate - there's no way of knowing that for sure. Written tests set by the college are all well and good but can be, and are, coached for. All teachers are likely to give glowing references so although this is an important factor it shouldn't be too powerful.

    Interviews show how the person responds under pressure - important for exams and life in general I'm afraid - and give the interviewers an indication of how the candidate thinks, which is what they're after. Interviews are in the style of the supervisions. If you can't cope with the interviews you won't cope with the supervsions. And if you can't think in the right way you won't cope at Cambridge or Oxford: you'll get left behind.
    "Interviews show how the person responds under pressure - important for exams " Surely the candidate has demonstrated this skill by getting three As in a level exams?????

    "Essays that are submitted are not necessarily written by the candidate"
    "All teachers are likely to give glowing references "
    Now if we are going to doubt the integrity of the applicant and school, then we could equally doubt the integrity of the interviewer!!

    You seem to have much faith in how the admissions systems is ideally supposed to work. In reality IT DOES NOT WORK VERY WELL. Therefore reform is neccessary.
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    Philosophy owns all subjects!
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    (Original post by Seer)
    Philosophy owns all subjects!

    thanks for that.....that's the second time today!
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    (Original post by Mentally Ill)
    Written tests for all subjects should be introduced. The main indicators of suitability should be the academic stuff eg, grades, essays etc., the results of the written test, the referees comments, and only if necessary, interview observations. Interviews should be more transparent, and less important. Those who have not received a great education should be given the opportunity to make this clear. Then the final decision should take this into account.

    The same should apply to any university who uses Interview.
    Written tests are not always that objective either you know. Its no all to rare that someone may manage to do well on a written test without understanding what they are doing. In some subject this is a greater problem than others, and this is also why collages want interviews. Its quite easy to tell when someone do not understand what they have learned at an interview, but it can be quite difficult to see on a written test. This is why universities with a large number of applicants want to hold interviews as well as having predicted grades in order to make sure that the students they accept actually have some understanding of the stuff , and did not just memorise it. Of course, the decision is not to be made on an interview alon, but that is neither the case. Besides, interview results are not as important as some people beleive. The interviewers do not expect you to formulate a grand unified field theory during a 30 minute interview, they merely want to see that you did deserve those predicted grades, and did not just suck up in order to get them.
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    (Original post by Mentally Ill)
    "Interviews show how the person responds under pressure - important for exams " Surely the candidate has demonstrated this skill by getting three As in a level exams?????

    "Essays that are submitted are not necessarily written by the candidate"
    "All teachers are likely to give glowing references "
    Now if we are going to doubt the integrity of the applicant and school, then we could equally doubt the integrity of the interviewer!!

    You seem to have much faith in how the admissions systems is ideally supposed to work. In reality IT DOES NOT WORK VERY WELL. Therefore reform is neccessary.

    Unfortunately I know someone who submitted an essay written by somebody else. He didn't get in though, hehe

    A levels don't show how well you can react under pressure. For one thing the time you are given is usually generous (maths excepted); for another you can, as has been said, simply memorise the syllabus. They don't make you think. And, as I said, reacting well under pressure is important for life in general. Oxbridge quite like to see high employment rates, can't imagine why.

    You'll be interviewed when you apply for a job - is that unfair?
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    Hey mentally ill
    how are the nerves, just pm u
 
 
 

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