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    (Original post by d750)
    I'd agree with that - there are plenty of people whose choice of college is simply a matter of personal preference. But my original point was essentially that there are slightly more stringent entry requirements for some colleges than for others. So the best students may be able to choose the college they want based entirely on whether they like it or not, but the worst students won't have the same freedom. I think that governs the assumptions about colleges - there may be very good students at Girton or New Hall, but the worst students in Cambridge will inevitable end up at such colleges. I think that may be why people like BB feel the need to advertise their achievements - people will expect less success from the members of New Hall and the like.

    I realise this may all sound very pompous, but I think it accurately reflects the reality of the situation.

    Ah well I am unaware of colleges have different entry requirements.
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    I am now a grad student at Oxford and neither here nor at Cambridge have I EVER come across 'lower calibre' students. They just don't get in. I have come across students who aren't motivated to work once they get in, but they are still just as capable if they wanted to be.
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    (Original post by MentallyIll)
    Ah well I am unaware of colleges have different entry requirements.
    Of course they do. They won't be stated in the form of A-level requirements, 'though. Would you argue that the requirements to get into Trinity (to use the same example again) overlap exactly with the base requirements for Cambridge?
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    (Original post by babyballerina)
    I am now a grad student at Oxford and neither here nor at Cambridge have I EVER come across 'lower calibre' students. They just don't get in. I have come across students who aren't motivated to work once they get in, but they are still just as capable if they wanted to be.
    I've got to disagree with you there. I've certainly came across students who don't have the same level of ability as the very best students.

    Personally I would admit that there are student here who have far more natural ability than me, and I have to work harder to keep up - and I'm predicted a First.
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    The reason people slate Girton is because it's so far out of town...it really is! I actually considered applying there and chose Churchill in the end...boy am I glad!

    To be fair, Homerton is just as far out and it's in the nasty part of town.

    Paddy
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    I wasn't very happy to find out certain colleges had "reputations" once I got here either, but you learn to live with it!

    I've only been at Cambridge for one year, so what I'm going to propose as an explanation is totally unsupported and is just my opinion. Anyway, here's my theory... the whole "prestige" thing is more important to people who are in their first year, who have been thrust into a community of very bright students and have no way of differentiating themselves. People who are insecure in their own abilities (and used to not having to prove they are the best because it's just "obvious") feel they can raise themselves above the rest by claiming their college is more selective or more prestigious. I can't imagine this line of argument having much weight once people have been classed after their first year. I suppose I could be way off base with this, though.

    For a lot of people, it's really just a bit of fun to have a dig at another college. Personally, although the distance of Girton from town would put me off rather a lot, I can't deny the attraction of a swimming pool, and I'm sure that like every college it has some strong points and some weaknesses. My friend at Pembroke told me a lot of the best students are there because it tends to take bright, hard-working international students.

    Finally, since my post is getting long and putting people to sleep, I think it can't be stressed enough how variable the results are from year to year between colleges. OK, so Christs' might come out with firsts every year - this is probably because

    1) They set harder conditional offers (someone on uk-learning mentioned needing an AEA Chemistry distinction to make his offer for Medicine!)

    2) Their atmosphere is pretty... unique

    3) People who know about the college's geeky tag and consider themselves particularly intelligent are also going to be drawn by this reputation. Maybe they feel they "deserve" this recognition. (Then again, maybe this reputation was news to them when they turned up in Freshers' week )

    In other colleges there does tend to be more variation from year to year. There were some surprises this year in my subject area.
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    (Original post by BazTheMoney)
    I've got to disagree with you there. I've certainly came across students who don't have the same level of ability as the very best students.

    Personally I would admit that there are student here who have far more natural ability than me, and I have to work harder to keep up - and I'm predicted a First.
    In every uni there are few genii, same at Oxbridge, But among the vast majority it's much of a muchness. Nearly everyone has got a minimum of 3 A's at A-level. Maybe that doesn't seem weird to you, but coming from a school where CCC was unusual, I noticed straight away that it's expected that everyone is really, really bright. One of my best friends got AAB and decided to stay at home and study at Teesside. People on her course had from AAA to EE and had thus very variying abilities, similar to school. I did a masters at York and found there was a big variation on the course of only 20 people.
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    * snores Zzzz *
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    Oh well, this thread's dead, is it?
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    (Original post by babyballerina)
    In every uni there are few genii, same at Oxbridge, But among the vast majority it's much of a muchness. Nearly everyone has got a minimum of 3 A's at A-level. Maybe that doesn't seem weird to you, but coming from a school where CCC was unusual, I noticed straight away that it's expected that everyone is really, really bright. One of my best friends got AAB and decided to stay at home and study at Teesside. People on her course had from AAA to EE and had thus very variying abilities, similar to school. I did a masters at York and found there was a big variation on the course of only 20 people.
    Well, coming from a school where AAA+ was quite common, I can tell you that the differences between certain students and other, who both got the same grades, are huge. Saying everyone gets AAA dosen't mean everyone has nearing the same level of intellect.
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    (Original post by babyballerina)
    In every uni there are few genii, same at Oxbridge, But among the vast majority it's much of a muchness. Nearly everyone has got a minimum of 3 A's at A-level. Maybe that doesn't seem weird to you, but coming from a school where CCC was unusual, I noticed straight away that it's expected that everyone is really, really bright. One of my best friends got AAB and decided to stay at home and study at Teesside. People on her course had from AAA to EE and had thus very variying abilities, similar to school. I did a masters at York and found there was a big variation on the course of only 20 people.
    I don't think that's right. There seems to be a reasonable difference between some students here and at Oxford. The fact that most will have AAAs means very little - it just isn't particulalry difficult to get AAAs any more.
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    (Original post by BazTheMoney)
    Well, coming from a school where AAA+ was quite common, I can tell you that the differences between certain students and other, who both got the same grades, are huge. Saying everyone gets AAA dosen't mean everyone has nearing the same level of intellect.
    Exactly. Just beat me to it.
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    Well i'll be delighted to see polthegael and everyone else there. I got an offer for vet sci and i was just happy to get in. Girton was the nicest college i went to, the people were really friendly and i felt good there so that's where i picked. Who cares about rep of the college, i know i'll be happy there and that's all that matters to me.

    YAY!!!! EXAMS ARE DONE!!!!!
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    (Original post by sbailey)
    1) They set harder conditional offers (someone on uk-learning mentioned needing an AEA Chemistry distinction to make his offer for Medicine!)

    2) Their atmosphere is pretty... unique

    3) People who know about the college's geeky tag and consider themselves particularly intelligent are also going to be drawn by this reputation. Maybe they feel they "deserve" this recognition. (Then again, maybe this reputation was news to them when they turned up in Freshers' week )
    Another medic? Cool There are really far too many of us on here, people will think we don't do anything!
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    the distance isnt that big a deal, i hear you get used to it, and second years can live in wolfson court which is pretty close to town anyway. dont worry about it.

    Remember cambridge is a small place and anything more than 5 minutes away is considered far away. A guy at St catherines was complaining of the distance of his college to sainsburies!
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    (Original post by sbailey)
    OK, so Christs' might come out with firsts every year - this is probably because

    1) They set harder conditional offers (someone on uk-learning mentioned needing an AEA Chemistry distinction to make his offer for Medicine!)

    2) Their atmosphere is pretty... unique

    3) People who know about the college's geeky tag and consider themselves particularly intelligent are also going to be drawn by this reputation. Maybe they feel they "deserve" this recognition. (Then again, maybe this reputation was news to them when they turned up in Freshers' week )

    In other colleges there does tend to be more variation from year to year. There were some surprises this year in my subject area.
    Christ's have actually dropped a lot recently - or so says a friend of mine there (he may well be wrong, I have not idea what the league tables were like last year). The issue with prestigious colleges is a bit stupid - you will receive the same education no matter where you go. The only way it matters is during exam time - a friend of mine at Peterhouse said he had trouble studying because of the distractions (though this likely reflects his friends as much or more than the college). Still it doesn't really matter.

    It is definitely true that prestious colleges tend to have more firsts (whether or not this made them presigious, or prestige made them more popular to applicants is unclear often). It is also ture, however, as someone mentioned earlier that some - though not all - admissions tutors are more likely to pool women as they know there are women's colleges who really need more bright women, whereas most men pooled are rejected.

    Basically, enjoy your college, have a good time with your degree, because you can get a first anywhere (one of my best mates was pooled from Pembroke to Girton, yet still got a high first at Girton).

    PS. Many of the prestigious colleges look better than they are on league tables as well - I am at Trinity, which is a quite good college, but looks more academic than it is just because it is very competitive for maths (over 50% of mathmos here get firsts, making the rest of us look better than we are on said league tables ).
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    A lot of good points. I would never judge someone by their college anyway, and I think most people wouldn't.

    Hi Helenia! You're right - if people ever find out we only have two lectures a week, there will be hell to pay
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    (Original post by sbailey)
    A lot of good points. I would never judge someone by their college anyway, and I think most people wouldn't.

    Hi Helenia! You're right - if people ever find out we only have two lectures a week, there will be hell to pay
    Unless of course, they start living up to the stereotype. Not referring to you (cos I don't know you) or anyone else too specific but if certain John's people happened to have been at the least rather rude to me, I might have sort of blamed it a little bit on their college ("Pah, what can you expect?" sort of thing :rolleyes: ) though I didn't make that judgement initially

    Sssshhhh! We have to keep these things quiet you know... apparently we get Saturdays this year too :eek:
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    (Original post by Helenia)
    Unless of course, they start living up to the stereotype. Not referring to you (cos I don't know you) or anyone else too specific but if certain John's people happened to have been at the least rather rude to me, I might have sort of blamed it a little bit on their college ("Pah, what can you expect?" sort of thing :rolleyes: ) though I didn't make that judgement initially
    Bah! What's with the John's-bashing?
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    (Original post by Helenia)
    ... but if certain John's people happened to have been at the least rather rude to me, I might have sort of blamed it a little bit on their college ("Pah, what can you expect?" sort of thing :rolleyes: )
    Maybe the John's rep isn't such a bad thing, after all? I didn't realise I could get away with acting like a d**k and people would just blame it on my college!

    As for Saturdays, I live in hope that they'll scrap them before we start, just as they did for us this year. Then again, if the supposed 2nd year workload is anything to go by...
 
 
 
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