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OXBRIDGE APPLICATIONS (the company): Useful/less? watch

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    One point I thought was interesting. "Private schools have me doing this since the dawn of time, it does work, Oxbridge applications are opening this up to the rest of society."
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    Oh and finally, am I completely mad in thinking it could be feasible for oxbridge to hire moles to goto these training days, and identify the students taking training. If doing it threatened your chances, demand would fall pretty quickly me thinks. Non?
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    (Original post by Lawzzzzzz)
    On this basis We should also stop recruitment agencies giving interview advice, or CV help... we should stop any help in the marketplace that people pay for
    I wouldn't be so against it if (as already mentioned) Oxford & Cambridge had tried so hard to stop money being a factor in admissions! I value education very highly, I just think it's a shame things have got this far! Hypocritical as it maybe, I think there is a difference between getting something spell checked/re-worded (whatever) and paying a nominal fee than paying hundreds (or more!) to give such an advantage!
    On the whole I don't think appying to university should be in the 'market place', that being enevitable doesn't justify it; in my opinion anyway! (Just as yours & others will be in your opinion)
    Even if the people using these services would have received offers anyway; it's still exploiting things!
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    (Original post by llama boy)
    Your "disgrace" comment wasn't about Oxbridge Applications, it was about the case of the unimpressive candidate/father/president/dinner etc.

    Which is fair enough. What I don't get is how you can then point out that the American system is worse, whilst simultaneously claiming that it is impossible to affect these things.
    The American system is worse, because their common application is much more vulnerable to exploitation by people who know the system (because it permits submitting additional materials). In addition, whereas here Oxbridge Services or whatever it's called charge £700 for a few days worth of advice, in the US people pay up to $35,000 for a two year long programme which includes advice on which subjects to study, which activities to take etc.

    My "disgrace" comment was to do with the fact that US unis are so unashamed of their favoritism towards alumni that they make their policy towards them public despite repeated studies showing alumni students are far less able than their counterparts admitted on merit.
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    (Original post by Katie J)
    I wouldn't be so against it if (as already mentioned) Oxford & Cambridge had tried so hard to stop money being a factor in admissions! I value education very highly, I just think it's a shame things have got this far! Hypocritical as it maybe, I think there is a difference between getting something spell checked/re-worded (whatever) and paying a nominal fee than paying hundreds (or more!) to give such an advantage!
    On the whole I don't think appying to university should be in the 'market place', that being enevitable doesn't justify it; in my opinion anyway! (Just as yours & others will be in your opinion)
    Even if the people using these services would have received offers anyway; it's still exploiting things!
    You use this forum. It gives you access to dozens of Oxbridge students and/or graduates, who answer questions, provide information you may not have otherwise considered, and through Private Messages occasionally give very specific advice. This will place you at an advantage over candidates unaware of it.

    Of course, you don't have to pay for it. However, you have probably made a considerable investment of time to the forum, which you could conceivably have used working at a pub or whatever, earning the money to pay for this course (certain facets of which, apparently, cost well under £100).

    You don't feel guilty about using it because it is a resource you discovered and you are making use of it. This Oxbridge Admissiosn is not that different. I agree it would be preferable if it weren't there; but given that it is I think it's extremely sensible to use it if you think it's useful (whether it is I have no idea - I'd imagine it varies between candidates though).
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    (Original post by H&E)
    The American system is worse, because their common application is much more vulnerable to exploitation by people who know the system (because it permits submitting additional materials). In addition, whereas here Oxbridge Services or whatever it's called charge £700 for a few days worth of advice, in the US people pay up to $35,000 for a two year long programme which includes advice on which subjects to study, which activities to take etc.

    My "disgrace" comment was to do with the fact that US unis are so unashamed of their favoritism towards alumni that they make their policy towards them public despite repeated studies showing alumni students are far less able than their counterparts admitted on merit.
    Yes, no doubt.

    I was questioning your statement that "it cannot be helped".

    In both cases, it can. Obviously, in the US, by abolishing official privilege for alumni for a start. In the UK, for example, centralising the Oxbridge admissions process would have prevented that girl you mentioned getting in.
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    (Original post by H&E)
    Like I said, many of us wish it wasn't there, but it is and there's nothing which can be done to remove it.

    Btw, say you graduate from university and you can't find a job, and these guys offer you a high wage? Would you turn it down? It's hardly arms-dealing is it?
    Something could be done *in theory* (is actually impossible I fear/know!) I don't believe in giving up!! National boycot...err...forcing applicants to admitt they've used these services...contract all graduates not to...remove freedom in this country...(lol, I wouldn't go that far!)

    Btw: I understand your argument, it does make sense, I just disagree not personal though! I'm the worst possible case to use for 'would I turn a job offer away that paid that much?'! I want to be an archaeologist....Oxbridge degree or not...there's very little chance I'll ever find employment, even if I do I think the max salary (sp? word?) is about £13k, and stupidly, I'd be happy! My subject is my passion...I'm not a fan of money!
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    I wonder if an innocent unknowing applicant has ever been half way through an interview when the interviewer shouts "have you been trained for this interview?!?!" at them.
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    (Original post by H&E)
    You use this forum. It gives you access to dozens of Oxbridge students and/or graduates, who answer questions, provide information you may not have otherwise considered, and through Private Messages occasionally give very specific advice. This will place you at an advantage over candidates unaware of it.

    Of course, you don't have to pay for it. However, you have probably made a considerable investment of time to the forum, which you could conceivably have used working at a pub or whatever, earning the money to pay for this course (certain facets of which, apparently, cost well under £100).

    You don't feel guilty about using it because it is a resource you discovered and you are making use of it. This Oxbridge Admissiosn is not that different. I agree it would be preferable if it weren't there; but given that it is I think it's extremely sensible to use it if you think it's useful (whether it is I have no idea - I'd imagine it varies between candidates though).
    I'm trying hard not to make this personal, it honestly isn't meant to be, even if appears that way!
    I recieved an offer a good week or so before finding this gem of a site! I was searching for any information I could about accomodation/reading lists I think when I came across it! I do work in a pub (£3.80/hour), I will be handing in my notice this coming Friday so I can force myself into revision and maintain my life outside of school! (The Goytre Arms if you're interested...good food...far too expensive, lol!) The only resources I used were the same as I used for other places, I made very little effort to prepare for the interviews themselves, more effort went into my subject than application. (I don't think that makes any sense...ah well... ...there's a point in there somewhere...)
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    I went through Oxbridge Admissions and am now studying NatSci. The consultants and mentors were very good and they knew what they were talking about. However I didn't enjoy the process that much.
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    (Original post by Katie J)
    I do work in a pub (£3.80/hour), I will be handing in my notice this coming Friday so I can force myself into revision and maintain my life outside of school! (The Goytre Arms if you're interested...good food...far too expensive, lol!)
    It's a good job you're quitting because that is seriously bad pay! I get 4.98 an hour for cleaning.

    (apologies for off-topicness)

    Edit to add: I just realised that sounded really offensive! I apologise if it does, i just mean that you probably deserve much better pay than that, that's almost slave labour!
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    (Original post by llama boy)
    Yes, no doubt.

    I was questioning your statement that "it cannot be helped".

    In both cases, it can. Obviously, in the US, by abolishing official privilege for alumni for a start. In the UK, for example, centralising the Oxbridge admissions process would have prevented that girl you mentioned getting in.
    When I say "cannot be helped?", I mean within forseeable actions. Obviously discrimination could be best eliminated by shutting down both universities, then we'd never see another wrong decision. However, this will not happen. Similarly, college based admissions are unlikely to be ended. Not least because ending them would cause more unfair decisions than it prevents.

    Katie J: I wasn't trying to say using this site devalued your offer (it wouldn't have done even if you had used it before interviews). Like I said, I think that if the resource is there, there's no reason not to use it.
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    And so that's why cheaply imported inflatable lilos are responsible for the recent catastrophe in the japanese noodle bar. (I'm invisible aren't I?)
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    (Original post by JacksonGreen)
    I went through Oxbridge Admissions and am now studying NatSci. The consultants and mentors were very good and they knew what they were talking about. However I didn't enjoy the process that much.
    Would I be right in guessing that they concentrate more on highlighting what you have achieved than on deceiving admissions tutors in thinking you are a better candidate than you are?

    Also, this may not be relevant to you, but were some of the people who used it people who struggled a bit with confidence and just required a bit of reassurance to make sure they could do themselves justice?
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    (Original post by F. Poste)
    It's a good job you're quitting because that is seriously bad pay! I get 4.98 an hour for cleaning.

    (apologies for off-topicness)

    I agree it sucks! Since I turned 18 I work on the bar quite a bit but they didn't put me up to a bar wage (all of £4.20!) I like the people too much to moan, that's my problem I think! There isn't that much work around where I live I have a 10-15min car journey to get there as it is! I work with my school mates, ach I will miss it! ('saddo' as my sister calls me!)
    (I apologise too!)

    EDIT:
    F.Poste: not at all offensive (how could that be?) don't worry!
    H&E: My point was that application for education shouldn't have become a business (a shockingly opportunistic one at that) not that resources should not be used; pay loads/read a book?...slight difference! Focus should be on the course not the application. That's all I have to say I think, I've run out of ideas to win you over I think ! I hope I haven't upset anyone, personal expression here, only my view! (NB: not claiming to be right, just stating what I think!)
    *shakes hand as peaceful gesture* (lol...cheesey)
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    (Original post by Katie J)
    I agree it sucks! Since I turned 18 I work on the bar quite a bit but they didn't put me up to a bar wage (all of £4.20!) I like the people too much to moan, that's my problem I think! There isn't that much work around where I live I have a 10-15min car journey to get there as it is! I work with my school mates, ach I will miss it! ('saddo' as my sister calls me!)
    (I apologise too!)
    I know what you mean. I'm handing in my notice myself on Tuesday, and I'll miss it because having to juggle studies, work, boyfriend, social life, family, etc, means that I don't have to think about some of the bad stuff in my life. I like the people I work with too, it's just as well that I do because one of them is my boyfriend. However, my boss is a bit sexist and I definitely won't miss watching her hand over all the extra work opportunities to the boys I work with!

    But you know, hurray for not working! *throws vaccuum cleaner in the bin*
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    (Original post by H&E)
    Would I be right in guessing that they concentrate more on highlighting what you have achieved than on deceiving admissions tutors in thinking you are a better candidate than you are?

    Also, this may not be relevant to you, but were some of the people who used it people who struggled a bit with confidence and just required a bit of reassurance to make sure they could do themselves justice?
    I think a bit of both was involved. I have an interest in genetics which they caught on to and they helped me to identify some key points that I should attempt to develop into the conversation at the interview. This was quite helpful. However, there was an element of deception involved because I was told some technical stuff on genetics which I didn't know but which would, and did, impress the interviewers.

    As for the other people who were there, I didn't get the feeling that many of them needed a confidence boost. Many were quite outgoing. I went with a few schoolfriends and we came out more frightened than when they went in (myself included) because we had spent so many hours being grilled, examined and analysed we felt like lab rats! In the end I thought the actual experience was far less painful than what the intensity of the preparation implied.
 
 
 

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