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    Hi everyone,

    I'm an international student in Asia currently choosing between Yale and an offer to take up PPE at Queen's. I am extremely grateful for being able to make this decision, but at the same time, am wrestling with the choice.

    1. What is it like to be an international student at Oxford, and how well do they usually integrate into the student body? In my case, I come from a non-commonwealth Asian country and have been geared towards an American education all my life. In addition to general concerns about adjusting to this new environment, I am much more familiar with American than British culture. Neither am I the most naturally outgoing person, and I don't go out, drink and party or anything. My fear then is that I'd have a difficult time meeting people, and all other factors aside, Yale is reputed to be a very friendly and welcoming place ... but at the same time, could someone a bit more tightly wound enjoy his time at Oxford?

    2. What are extra-curriculars at Oxford like? Are they really much less prominent than they would be at an American university? (interested in debate, Model United Nations, student council, and writing for the student newspaper) Is the focus more so on the academics? Similarly, would you consider it a much more intellectual environment rather than career-driven environment?

    3. What are most Oxford students like? This may be loosely related to the last question. This is surely oversimplifying things, but would it be far from true to say that Oxford students would be much more focused on their academics? American universities aren't just academic environments, but places that attract ambitious students who are perhaps more career-oriented. Think Mark Zuckerberg in The Social Network. The U.S. college admissions process also puts a premium on holistic standards, such as life experiences you offer through your essays and recommendations. Although Oxford students are no doubt brilliant, would there be less dynamism and, in some ways, less people with interesting backgrounds and career-driven achievements?

    4. How different are student personalities and cultures across colleges? I initially applied to Balliol and was then pooled to Queen's. I don't know much about the college, and would appreciate any insights for a very politically-minded, tightly wound international student looking to make the most of the next three years. That said, to put it bluntly, are not all Oxford colleges created equally? My understanding is that at Cambridge, Trinity reigns somehow above all others -- is that the case for a few of those (albeit to a lesser extent) at Oxford? Where would Queen's fall on this scale? And, if I may ask, would the students here be less engaging than at these other colleges?

    Aside from those specific points, I'd also appreciate hearing your takes on the general differences between the two environments. I apologize for asking so many questions -- as a confused high schooler halfway around the world, I really, really appreciate any help you guys can extend. Thank you very much!
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    Obviously Oxford
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    I think it depends more on the program/degree you want to peruse? May I ask what program?
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    If you're going for undergraduate, the age to buy drinks is 21 in the USA, so there's a less of a drinking culture over there, but it does exist (fraternities/sororities).
    In terms of social life and extra-curricular, I would weight this more in favour of Yale as American students are expected to be on par with not only academics but also their own interests in sports, music, etc. There's probably a lot more to do at Yale, as well as longer terms (or semesters).

    Oxford has shorter terms, and there exists over 600 clubs and societies and you can always create your own, there tends to be a mixture of people, so you'll enjoy it there anyway.

    I'd say your personality would suit Yale more, especially if you've been geared towards American academics. They're both excellent universities, and it's up to you on what to decide:
    - Course (specialised or liberal arts)
    - Length of study
    - Which lifestyle/university you like better

    Consider future plans too, work in Europe or North America? Though it shouldn't matter as both are top universities, but companies probably are more experienced with national universities more. If you are going back to Asia, then American universities tend to hold a heavier reputation than British universities (for some reason).
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    (Original post by RedCasino)
    If you're going for undergraduate, the age to buy drinks is 21 in the USA, so there's a less of a drinking culture over there, but it does exist (fraternities/sororities).
    In terms of social life and extra-curricular, I would weight this more in favour of Yale as American students are expected to be on par with not only academics but also their own interests in sports, music, etc. There's probably a lot more to do at Yale, as well as longer terms (or semesters).

    Oxford has shorter terms, and there exists over 600 clubs and societies and you can always create your own, there tends to be a mixture of people, so you'll enjoy it there anyway.

    I'd say your personality would suit Yale more, especially if you've been geared towards American academics. They're both excellent universities, and it's up to you on what to decide:
    - Course (specialised or liberal arts)
    - Length of study
    - Which lifestyle/university you like better
    For what they lack in academics, prospective ivy league students make up in extra curricular. It's hardly an "in addition to".
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    (Original post by SteveCrain)
    For what they lack in academics, prospective ivy league students make up in extra curricular. It's hardly an "in addition to".
    Ivy League is just a sports collaboration, there are the more excellent ones like Harvard and Yale, and those who don't perform quite as well. It is an arguable case indeed, but even Olympiads get rejected from top Ivy League schools, plus there's more competition for these places so people do need to stand out.

    I agree with your point to some extent, but it doesn't mean that American students are inferior when it comes to academics (though some do get accepted for sports scholarships or alumnus).
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    I'm an international student from UK who is in US for study.

    PURELY based on reputation - Hands down, without a doubt, Yale.
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    In all seriousness, PPE at Oxford, regardless of the college, is pretty much a golden ticket to awesome.
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    Oxford. You could always go to the US for postgrad which is I've heard is better there and I'm sure you'll be accepted to one of the top ones again.
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    (Original post by agolati)
    I'm an international student from UK who is in US for study.

    PURELY based on reputation - Hands down, without a doubt, Yale.

    British youth culture is rather swamped in Alcohol everywhere you go. I could imagine it is less prevalent at Ox and Yale because in a non-stereotypical way, they tend to be the more 'geekier' students. Yale is KNOWN for it's 'geeky' students in comparison to the other ivy's.

    Seriously, go for Yale.
    Tbf, Yale is known for geeky kids and feminine men. But lol at thinking you can avoid alc/drugs by going to a "geekier" school. Just recently there was like a 30k drug bust for 2 students at Y who were dealing. Both are fine schools, so it would be pointless to pick based off of rep. Pick for location, etc.
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    Man, I envy you your options. Either will give you excellent prospects, so it's hard to say.

    I'm inclined to say that Yale will have better facilities and funding though. There really isn't anything to rival the top US colleges on that front.

    Have you visited both? What were your feelings about each?
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    Yeah, according to a respected college website, Yale has the most attractive men (subjective). If you like your eye candy, and probably a larger mix of students (Oxford is predominantly white in reflective of British population - it's not London by any means).
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    (Original post by adam0311)
    Tbf, Yale is known for geeky kids and feminine men. But lol at thinking you can avoid alc/drugs by going to a "geekier" school. Just recently there was like a 30k drug bust for 2 students at Y who were dealing. Both are fine schools, so it would be pointless to pick based off of rep. Pick for location, etc.
    Drugs will be everywhere you go. I don't know why people see it as such a big deal. It's just the media ascribing a drug image to junkies who are homeless and can't help themselves, that's what you'd expect with the class A's, not so much when it comes to weed. I don't have weed although it may seem that I do lol Jus sayin, weed is much less harmful than alcohol, and alcohol is prevalent in british universities. The pub, bar and club culture.

    How would you define feminine? I've never heard that rumour.
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    Either way, fantastic universities. You should be privileged to go either institution.
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    Quite an interesting read:
    http://www.yaledailynews.com/news/20...yales-breadth/

    I suppose a big part of it is whether you would prefer a broad, liberal arts education or more focused study in PPE.
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    (Original post by agolati)
    Drugs will be everywhere you go. I don't know why people see it as such a big deal. It's just the media ascribing a drug image to junkies who are homeless and can't help themselves, that's what you'd expect with the class A's, not so much when it comes to weed. I don't have weed although it may seem that I do lol Jus sayin, weed is much less harmful than alcohol, and alcohol is prevalent in british universities. The pub, bar and club culture.

    How would you define feminine? I've never heard that rumour.
    Seriously? Seems pretty common. Basically softies. Princeton--being the opposite--is known for having fratty bros.
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    London Southbank.
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    (Original post by qwertyuiop1993)
    whether you would prefer a broad, liberal arts education or more focused study in PPE.
    this is basically what it comes down to.

    I'd prefer specifically to study PPE rather than a broader education. So I'd chose Oxford for that reason.
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    It's dynamicism and not dynamism.

    OP = troll.
    Obv not holding an offer from either uni.
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    (Original post by agolati)
    I'm an international student from UK who is in US for study.

    PURELY based on reputation - Hands down, without a doubt, Yale.

    British youth culture is rather swamped in Alcohol everywhere you go. I could imagine it is less prevalent at Ox and Yale because in a non-stereotypical way, they tend to be the more 'geekier' students. Yale is KNOWN for it's 'geeky' students in comparison to the other ivy's.

    Seriously, go for Yale.


    Agreed.
 
 
 

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