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    *I have a feeling this is going to be a long one. So skip to the end if you really want*

    Okay, got offers from Imperial College London and Durham (St Chad's) to do straight Physics. (AAA and AAB; but im not too worried about getting the grades)

    I really would appreciate any help or advice. I thought i should try and get as many opinions and angles on it as i could since this is a very big decision for me (and one i could regret for 3-4 years of my life )

    Okay I'll write a Pros / Cons list so that you can see what im thinking and so that anyone else in my situation can share what ive found out so far. (Theres links at the end to the most useful sites i could find too. Hope it helps someone)

    Here goes:

    ***Imperial***

    PROS:

    *Better ranked - Supposedly #3 in the country and the best place for physics outside of Oxbridge. It has very close links with business, finance etc in London they say. I have a feeling it would be sensible in the long run.

    *London to explore - Theres definately gonna be plenty to do. Countless clubs and as many gigs as i can afford to go to. If I meet the right people and get ontop of my work I should have an amazingly exciting time

    *Big buildings! - Its in a really nice part of London. You cant help but feel a little important walking past the Albert Hall and Hyde park everyday. (i currently live in the backwaters of Wales btw, so it'll be a change to have some nice architecture around )

    *Societies Galore - Have you seen the list on wikipedia?!? (see links bit) theres gotta be something i'd get into. Apparently the highest spending university on societies and clubs in Britain

    *Also - free gym (at the moment), I can buy all my clothes from Camden Market (I'll be just like Vince Noir i will haha :biggrin:)

    CONS:

    *Male/Female ratio - Its 65/35 overall and i think physics is slightly below that (all the girls are medics or life sciences.) I'm going to get a room in an intercollegiate hall if i can (although its not guaranteed I'll get one by any means)

    *the dreaded Imperial Stereotype! - Stereotypes dont mean anything but its still playing on my mind a little. meh your bound to get a few 'nerds' in any university thats highly ranked I guess

    ****Also - pricey, crap freshers week, city life could drive me mad, apparently a very very hard course

    ***Durham***

    PROS:

    *Their so lovely! - Everyone, the lecturers, pastoral support people and (of course) the students. I was surprised and delighted by the warm heartedness i was shown by everyone i met there. I really was

    *College system - The only non-oxbridge place that does this. "St Chad's is a small college which has an unrivalled sense of community." Id agree with that from what i saw on the open day. Durham is renound for its social life. I could easily imagine making alot of friends there, that i would keep for the rest of my life.

    *Beautiful medieval stylee city - The cobbled streets, listed buildings and the best cathedral in England! I could think of worse places to live

    *Also - Newcastle 20 mins away on the train, more options in the optional module thing (better course structure), snow!

    CONS:

    *Student bars and nothing else - It'd be fine (cheap booze) but I might find myself wanting a bit more. Durham officially has the worst nightclub in Britain (as voted by some magazine or another.) And the other two arent very good either

    *The dreaded Durham Stereotype! - (you get one too :wink: ) Theres a fair few 'rahs' about. Lets leave it at that, I dont wanna get into a debate about class prejudice here lol

    *Also - they specialise in cosmology (not particularly my thing), silly gowns and formal dinners, rain and cold weather!

    LINKS:
    The best rankings table i could find (not course specific)
    Unofficial-guides.com: Imperial
    Unofficial-guides.com: Durham
    Imperial forum- iclforum . com (wont let me link it! strange)
    St Chads JCR forum
    Imperial's huge clubs and societies list

    Phew, well that took a while. But at least you know exactly what im thinking now. If anyone could add anything to those pros/cons list, taking anything away, give me any advice, (give me an award for the longest post? :biggrin:) that'd mental. thankyouuuu!
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    Since this is an 'Imperial forum', then I suggest you look nowhere else other than Imperial, lol.
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    I was in a similar situation, except I had to make a decision between Warwick and LSE.

    I'd go with Imperial if I were you.
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    Well, obviously in your case, economics at LSE - who could refuse? You must have had some top notch grades at GCSE - heard some rumours that they don't accept anyone for interviews with less than 8A*.

    Don't know what I'm doing here at this kind of time - off to bed- night
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    (Original post by Rofl)
    Well, obviously in your case, economics at LSE - who could refuse? You must have had some top notch grades at GCSE - heard some rumours that they don't accept anyone for interviews with less than 8A*.

    Don't know what I'm doing here at this kind of time - off to bed- night
    I didn't do the GCSEs; I did the GCE 'O' levels, which is the predecessor to the GCSEs. I did decently well although not spectacular. What probably helped me was my 'A' level grades (AAAAabb) and excellent EC record.

    LSE doesn't interview the majority of her applicants by the way. And if you score > 8A* at GCSE, you'll probably be accepted in the first round of admissions.. but they'll move down from there. So it's still perfectly possible to gain admission with 5A* (or so).
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    Ok, what can I say that I haven't already said on the other board?

    Imperial has a better reputation than Durham.
    Durham is in Durham - Imperial is in LONDON!!!!

    My cousin goes to Southampton uni - ok, it's not Durham, but it's probably a bit more nightlife than Durham, basicaly comparable though.
    Her idea of a great night out is going out clubbing once a month maybe and otherwise they just watch DVDs at the most.
    My sister visited her and said that everyone there just didn't seem to party as much as we do in London. In the week she was here we went out a lot to the best places and if we didn't we'd have a quite night watching DVDs for a change and well, in general, you'll just have much more to do in London.
    Durham you might be able to go to a pub, but if you don't have a car, you can't get to where the nightlife is and you'll have to add a lot of petrol cost if you want to have an experience similar to the one you'd have in London.
    The train won't go late at night, don't count on that connection.

    Cosmology is uh... **** if you want to get a job later. Imperial has a lot of areas to specialise in, not just a theoretical, impractical one.
    If you end up hating your subject you also have the option of going into banking and earning vast sums of money there if you go to Imperial.
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    plus fresher's week at imperial is awesome if you are in my halls at least.
    male:female ratio only gets you if you are a nerd. if you aren't one the girls will love you for not being one of the many nerds.
    if you're worried about nerds - don't be. you'll hardly see them as they only hang out in their rooms or the library.

    i do straight physics too - it's not insanely hard. if I'd have done more work and had less fun partying I'd be getting better results in my coming exams, but hey, if you only do the assessed work and revise a tiny bit you are basically guaranteed to just about pass - anything else including all the homework sheets and extra revision will make your grades better. Seriously, it's not that hard, people just don't do the work (like me) because London life is so great (I used to live a village of 1000 inhabitants, lol. City won't make you unhappy, it'll make you very happy)
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    Imperial !
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    i had the same choice for sept 2006 entry, but medicine: IC vs Stockton. just chose IC, n praying i make the grades. its a major risk coz IC is conditional, Stockton (Durham) is unconditional. but i chose london for being london, for the reputation of IC, for the things i will get to see/experience there tht there wont b in Durham, n partly coz i'm asian, less chances of discrimination in London.

    although my bf n best mate will both b at Durham

    but the choice is made anyway. London is london, n IC is IC after all....
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    (Original post by Suyin01)
    London is london, n IC is IC after all....
    You've made the right choice, ICL medicine is meant to be really good and the students are always partying...
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    (Original post by edders)
    You've made the right choice, ICL medicine is meant to be really good and the students are always partying...
    Not in the 2nd year... apparently they've all got too much work on!

    All the party animals I know from year 1 have really knuckled down!

    And to the original poster:
    Don't let the male/female ratio get to you. If you are a laid back sort of guy who has lots of female friends atm, that won't change if you come to Imperial, as there are still plenty of girls around!

    And DON'T choose intercollegiate halls of residence just to meet girls/artsy people. I haven't met a single person from intercollegiate residences who enjoy it - most of them wish they were in IC halls so they won't miss out on the social life!
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    Thankyou all for the help!

    Im ALMOST decided: It is gonna be Imperial i think

    Durham seems like the safe bet (their all so nice there i dont see how i couldnt enjoy the place. Its just I might get a little bored.) Imperial is a bit more of a risk - but London sounds a laugh. So yeah. Fortune favours the brave doesnt it?
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    (Original post by halfoflessthan50p)
    Thankyou all for the help!

    Im ALMOST decided: It is gonna be Imperial i think

    Durham seems like the safe bet (their all so nice there i dont see how i couldnt enjoy the place. Its just I might get a little bored.) Imperial is a bit more of a risk - but London sounds a laugh. So yeah. Fortune favours the brave doesnt it?
    ...favours the brave as long as you make an informed decision. See you next year.
 
 
 

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