TCW
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I thought this would be useful for people to find out a bit more about what the degree entails. Bear in mind this is all from my perspective, i.e. someone distinctly average (Cambridge-speaking) at maths and not one of the super-geniuses that frequent this forum. I'll try to be as honest and informative as I can. It's going to be very easy for people who know me to work out who I am, and I'd appreciate if they were to keep that to themselves, or at least PM me if they want to ask me something privately.

I can go beyond maths, but I'd rather stick to that to start with at least. Personal questions may be humoured but don't hold your breath.

Ask away...

I'll start off with some basics.

I'm graduating this year having done 3 years at Cambridge, Part IA, Part IB and Part II. Part III is not of consideration. I know I'd struggle massively.

I've ended up wholly applied.
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TCW
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Oh and this will probably last for a month or so.
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Hipster
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Spoiler:
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Why is six scared of seven at the Cambridge Mathematics department?
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unknownking321
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I'll get the obvious question out of the way first. What are the female mathematicians at Cambridge like? :holmes:
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unknownking321
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(Original post by Hipster)
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Why is six scared of seven at the Cambridge Mathematics department?
789? :flute:
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Hipster
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(Original post by unknownking321)
789? :flute:
No. Because seven eight[='ate'] nine at the Cambridge Mathematics department.
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TCW
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(Original post by unknownking321)
I'll get the obvious question out of the way first. What are the female mathematicians at Cambridge like? :holmes:
Well, as you may know, there aren't too many of them. And I don't know too many of them either. But the ones I do know are smart, interesting and generally very nice people to hang around with. There aren't really any of the 'odd' variety that you get of their male counterparts.
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GMD
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(Original post by TCW)
Well, as you may know, there aren't too many of them. And I don't know too many of them either. But the ones I do know are smart, interesting and generally very nice people to hang around with. There aren't really any of the 'odd' variety that you get of their male counterparts.
extending this question to the more important area, are they fit?
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dom bradbury
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which college do you go to? would you recommend it? i am unsure whether it's worth applying to trinity or not
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JayReg
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I want to apply for maths with physics and transfer to natural sciences in the second year to do physics. Unfortunately I can't apply to both Oxford and Cambridge so I need to know whether I can cope with the first year (at least) mathematics course at Cambridge, if I find out I cant then I'll apply to Oxford to do physics. How would you suggest I could find out?
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TCW
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(Original post by GMD)
extending this question to the more important area, are they fit?
I think there are a few. Do you like asian girls?
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TCW
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(Original post by dom bradbury)
which college do you go to? would you recommend it? i am unsure whether it's worth applying to trinity or not
I'll hold off answering which college I'm at for a while (this would pretty much immediately give away who I am) til I'm comfortable with how this thread is turning out. I will say though I'm not from Trinity.

I wouldn't really discourage you from applying to any of the colleges. If this is of interest to you, a quick glance at the class list for Part II this year shows a disproportionate number of students from Fitzwilliam and Queens obtaining a 2.2 or below. However this is of course a small sample so I wouldn't draw too many conclusions from it. If I were a little less lazy I would have a look at all the available class lists available to me but unfortunately I can't be bothered. Perhaps someone will weigh in on this.

Again looking at the class list there seems to be a large bunch of Trinity mathmos who have got a 2.2 in their finals which suggests not all of them are all that amazing. As I'm sure you're aware their interview/application proccess is slightly different to other colleges, so I guess it comes down to whether or not that process suits you. I'm sure other people will be happy to answer about the process instead of me.

Also you could get pooled from Trinity if they don't want you but think you're still worth a shot for some other college.
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TCW
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(Original post by JayReg)
I want to apply for maths with physics and transfer to natural sciences in the second year to do physics. Unfortunately I can't apply to both Oxford and Cambridge so I need to know whether I can cope with the first year (at least) mathematics course at Cambridge, if I find out I cant then I'll apply to Oxford to do physics. How would you suggest I could find out?
You may be able to have a look at our maths schedules online. I think for Maths with Phys (I didn't do this) they don't do Numbers and Sets, and Dynamics, instead substituting those with their Physics stuff. That means in terms of maths modules, you're left with Groups, Vectors and Matrices, Probability, Analysis, Differential Equations, Vector Calculus. You could look up descriptions for these in the schedules and probably even access some lecture notes online. They will probably seem like complete gibberish to you right now, but give some of them a read, maybe try some example sheet questions on them to see how you feel.

All this advice is given with the benefit of hindsight. I pretty much went into the course not knowing anything about what I'd be learning and thinking I'd walk it like I did school maths. Needless to say, I was wrong. So it's worth looking ahead to try and gauge courses. But do bear in mind, all maths looks hard at first, to me, almost impossible. It's until you try some questions that you really know how difficult the subject really is.
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im so academic
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(Original post by TCW)
I thought this would be useful for people to find out a bit more about what the degree entails. Bear in mind this is all from my perspective, i.e. someone distinctly average (Cambridge-speaking) at maths and not one of the super-geniuses that frequent this forum. I'll try to be as honest and informative as I can. It's going to be very easy for people who know me to work out who I am, and I'd appreciate if they were to keep that to themselves, or at least PM me if they want to ask me something privately.

I can go beyond maths, but I'd rather stick to that to start with at least. Personal questions may be humoured but don't hold your breath.

Ask away...

I'll start off with some basics.

I'm graduating this year having done 3 years at Cambridge, Part IA, Part IB and Part II. Part III is not of consideration. I know I'd struggle massively.

I've ended up wholly applied.
How were you like as a teenager (13-18) before the time of application?

Were you doing 6 hours of maths a day or something like that?
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Extricated
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In year 11, did STEP questions seem impossible? Also, what questions (if not the exact ones, general ideas) were you asked at interview? Do you remember your AS level module scores and your GCSEs?
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A level Az
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What kind of stuff did they ask you in the interviews?
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TCW
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(Original post by im so academic)
How were you like as a teenager (13-18) before the time of application?

Were you doing 6 hours of maths a day or something like that?
Unfortunately I wasn't a particularly keen mathematician when I was younger. Looking back, that's the sort of self-training and motivation that would go a long well in ensuring you did well at uni maths. Although it didn't seem it at the time, the issue was that school maths (that is GCSE and A levels) was too easy, and I was happy for it to be so and didn't push myself. In a weird way, the fact that my teachers were so good at teaching the syllabus I didn't really have to 'think' for myself. And so it ended up that at uni I was longing to be spoonfed anything at all, which at Cambridge doesn't really happen.

I did however do the maths challenges and subsequent BMOs and also the school team maths stuff, so was to an extent involved in 'extra-curricular maths' though I suppose the main point is that there was never any extra work that went into those things.

On the bright side, I was fairly active in non-maths activities. I enjoyed music, played in orchestras, went to gigs and festivals etc. I also played a lot of sport for my school, some to a pretty high level. Played chess, go and poker too. Economic and other societies as well.

Unless you plan on going down the academia route, you'll find that in the latter two years of uni you have to start planning on your career after uni. And I found that me being somewhat OK socially gave me a little edge over other mathmos a little when applying for jobs. (I maintained a 2.1 grade throughout so was OK on that count.)

So, cliffs: Not really massively into my maths at school. Was just quite good at it. Extra interests helped set me apart from other students when it came to jobs.
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kerily
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Is there time to lead a life outside of your degree, to a certain extent? Obviously I want to commit myself massively to maths or I wouldn't have bothered applying, but I also want to join a couple of societies if I do happen to have made my offer, and I want to get a decent class of said degree.

If you're prepared to work hard, but you're not an absolute god, can you get a 2:1? I'd not be too happy to get in, work like hell for three years, and then leave with a 3rd. (Edit: I am aware that 2:2s exist too, and I'm not insinuating you should be able to slack off and get a decent grade But if you really, really are prepared to work very hard, and you're of the standard to do well enough on STEP to get in, can you get a 2:1, or is a certain level of godlike intelligence necessary?)

Is there a noticeable divide between state students and those who have come from schools where they had better/different teaching and syllabi? I'd imagine that if there was one, it'd be ironed out after a bit of time at uni... but is it quite noticeable at first?
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kerily
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(Original post by z0tx)
Does that make sense? :rolleyes:
:hello:

Girls do study maths degrees occasionally
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ibysaiyan
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(Original post by kerily)
Is there time to lead a life outside of your degree, to a certain extent? Obviously I want to commit myself massively to maths or I wouldn't have bothered applying, but I also want to join a couple of societies if I do happen to have made my offer, and I want to get a decent class of said degree.

If you're prepared to work hard, but you're not an absolute god, can you get a 2:1? I'd not be too happy to get in, work like hell for three years, and then leave with a 3rd.

Is there a noticeable divide between state students and those who have come from schools where they had better/different teaching and syllabi? I'd imagine that if there was one, it'd be ironed out after a bit of time at uni... but is it quite noticeable at first?
Unless your luck tends to be near the 'bad luck spectrum' it all melts down in putting effort ,right ?
Besides for anyone who has got the privilege to be in one of the two 'elite'/top universities that shouldn't be a problem of course if one has gone this far into getting there,making through it shouldn't be hard provided they put in the effort and are ambitious about their subject not just for the sake of being there.
Just a thought

You'll be fine
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