Reapplying to Cambridge for Maths after a gap year Watch
This year I received an offer to study from Cambridge to study Mathematics, with the condition of achieving A*A*A and a 1,1 in STEP II and III. My insurance is Warwick which I'm quite confident I'll meet.
Anyway, STEP II did not go very well for me. Which is really frustrating because I have been consistently getting high 1s and even Ss on my mocks at home but the nerves really got to me. I am feeling fairly confident about STEP III (this afternoon!) as I tend to favour the topics more, but even if it goes to plan I'll not likely meet my offer and my odds of being rescued by the Summer pool aren't great.
However I find myself seriously considering the prospect of a gap year and reapplying next year. Not just because I want to go to Cambridge (I realise there's far from certainty I'd even get an offer next year!) but because I think I might like to work a few days a week to save some money to go travelling. Obviously keeping up with maths too - I'd plan to study some extra modules (FP3, M3, M4, S4) and obviously would work on STEP and Olympiad stuff to keep my problem solving sharp.
So my questions are as follows -
1) Has anyone been in a similar position and received another offer from Cambridge? Is this something that often happens? It seems strange to me because obviously a person who has done this is in a much stronger position come interview-time.
2) Apparantly Cambridge usually give reapplicants an S,1 offer if they reapply. This is somewhat daunting - were I to get an offer again I'd be pretty confident I could get a 1,1 as I feel I'm already pretty much there and would have extra modules and practice behind me. In fact, an S,1 should really be doable. But does anyone have any experience of whether someone offered an S,1 who then got a 1,1 would fare well in the pool ?
3) Does anyone have any experience of pulling out of Warwick maths as an insurance and reapplying? I mean hopefully I could do well in the MAT and get Imperial as my insurance next year (which I'd probably favour) but it would be nice to do this without risking a place at a top uni... I'm pretty confident I'll come out of A-levels already with the grades for their standard offer so could I expect an unconditional or would I be more likely to receive an outright rejection after this year's pulling out?
Any advice greatly appreciated!
2) You'd have to ask a mathmo, but I imagine someone who got 1,1 would be in a stronger position than eg 1,2
3) You can't do that for Cambridge, you'd have to take a gap year. You can however do that for Oxford - friend of mine did that after getting A*A*A at A2 (e rejected them the first time around pre-interview - didn't want to do English) and got into Queens for Classics. They delete all the applicant files that were unsuccessful and if you apply to a new college you'll be treated as a clean state (not an issue for you though as you applied to Cam first). If you plan on gap year and Cam, just don't reapply to the same college because the interviewers won't be different and they will probably reject you again.