Two questions on uni and course (Princepieman?)

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    Okay just to quickly summarise, I've just received my A level results and am about to take a gap year. I received A*AA in Maths, Physics and Politics respectively (my school doesn't offer Economics), and an A* in an EPQ about European integration with approximately 50% on the economic side of things. I've also learnt the AS Further Maths syllabus, but didn't sit any exams in it - I plan to learn Stats 3 & 4 in my gap year to further cement my knowledge after taking Stats 1 & 2 for AS and A2. I initially got rejected from Oxford post-interview and LSE presumably on the basis of personal statement, which I got given little advice on from my school (and have done additional EC's to strengthen it since), so firmed Nottingham for Economics. Upon receiving my results I've decided to have another attempt at the former two unis.

    So my UCAS plan is to apply to Oxford, LSE and Warwick as my top options (PPE at Oxford over E&M since I don't think I could stand doing Management, and Economics at the latter two). Since these are all very competitive, I figured I should also put a safer option down that I am very likely to get, so my semi-target options are Bristol and Nottingham, but preferably I'd like to put just one of these down and leave the last slot blank in case I get rejected from all 3 top choices, and would probably put UCL afterwards. Sorry for all that writing, now to the questions:

    1. Should I pick Bristol or Nottingham?

    I know that both are semi-targets and offer good Economics courses. Just from what I can tell the prestige factor, for what it's worth, seems roughly on-par, with maybe Bristol slightly edging it out. I also know, however, that Nottingham has a fantastic careers service that attracts banks, so I was wondering whether this might be more advantageous? As a place though I'd prefer Bristol, so if the difference is negligible that's probably the one I'd go for.

    2. How much maths content does PPE at Oxford have, and would Economics at LSE be a better course for IB?

    I imagine a lot of people probably won't be able to answer the first part, so if not then no worries. Obviously PPE has the accreditation of an Oxbridge degree which should at least help me to secure an interview, but since they are a bit ambiguous as to how much maths is involved on their website I'm unsure of whether or not this would give me a sufficient mathematical background that may be required for banking in comparison to other job applicants. On the other hand, I know LSE's degree has a lot of mathematical content focussing on statistics and econometrics as it's single honours, so this would likely be preferable to PPE? I aim to take the one-year masters in Economics at Cambridge afterwards if all goes to plan, so I was also fearing that PPE wouldn't feature enough pure economics content to enable me to make a competitive application as opposed to straight Economics graduates. On the tiny chance that I did get offers for both though, it would absolutely kill me to turn down an Oxford offer.

    If anyone can answer, or even partially answer any of these questions I would be very grateful!

    Tagging Princepieman since he seems to be an IB guru
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    (Original post by JRKinder)
    Okay just to quickly summarise, I've just received my A level results and am about to take a gap year. I received A*AA in Maths, Physics and Politics respectively (my school doesn't offer Economics), and an A* in an EPQ about European integration with approximately 50% on the economic side of things. I've also learnt the AS Further Maths syllabus, but didn't sit any exams in it - I plan to learn Stats 3 & 4 in my gap year to further cement my knowledge after taking Stats 1 & 2 for AS and A2. I initially got rejected from Oxford post-interview and LSE presumably on the basis of personal statement, which I got given little advice on from my school (and have done additional EC's to strengthen it since), so firmed Nottingham for Economics. Upon receiving my results I've decided to have another attempt at the former two unis.

    So my UCAS plan is to apply to Oxford, LSE and Warwick as my top options (PPE at Oxford over E&M since I don't think I could stand doing Management, and Economics at the latter two). Since these are all very competitive, I figured I should also put a safer option down that I am very likely to get, so my semi-target options are Bristol and Nottingham, but preferably I'd like to put just one of these down and leave the last slot blank in case I get rejected from all 3 top choices, and would probably put UCL afterwards. Sorry for all that writing, now to the questions:

    1. Should I pick Bristol or Nottingham?

    I know that both are semi-targets and offer good Economics courses. Just from what I can tell the prestige factor, for what it's worth, seems roughly on-par, with maybe Bristol slightly edging it out. I also know, however, that Nottingham has a fantastic careers service that attracts banks, so I was wondering whether this might be more advantageous? As a place though I'd prefer Bristol, so if the difference is negligible that's probably the one I'd go for.

    2. How much maths content does PPE at Oxford have, and would Economics at LSE be a better course for IB?

    I imagine a lot of people probably won't be able to answer the first part, so if not then no worries. Obviously PPE has the accreditation of an Oxbridge degree which should at least help me to secure an interview, but since they are a bit ambiguous as to how much maths is involved on their website I'm unsure of whether or not this would give me a sufficient mathematical background that may be required for banking in comparison to other job applicants. On the other hand, I know LSE's degree has a lot of mathematical content focussing on statistics and econometrics as it's single honours, so this would likely be preferable to PPE? I aim to take the one-year masters in Economics at Cambridge afterwards if all goes to plan, so I was also fearing that PPE wouldn't feature enough pure economics content to enable me to make a competitive application as opposed to straight Economics graduates. On the tiny chance that I did get offers for both though, it would absolutely kill me to turn down an Oxford offer.

    If anyone can answer, or even partially answer any of these questions I would be very grateful!

    Tagging Princepieman since he seems to be an IB guru
    1. Go with your gut, which from your post is leaning towards Bristol. Not much between them.

    2. Can't comment on maths content of PPE, but from what I've seen of my friend's work in E&M, the Economics bit is slightly mathsy but not unbearably so. As for the second part of the question, it doesn't matter.

    3. Why take a masters if your goal is IB? Just get to uni and hop on the spring week > summer > grad train. *
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    (Original post by Princepieman)
    1. Go with your gut, which from your post is leaning towards Bristol. Not much between them.

    2. Can't comment on maths content of PPE, but from what I've seen of my friend's work in E&M, the Economics bit is slightly mathsy but not unbearably so. As for the second part of the question, it doesn't matter.

    3. Why take a masters if your goal is IB? Just get to uni and hop on the spring week > summer > grad train. *
    1. Thanks. I'm going to the Bristol open day in September just to check everything over, then I'll make my final decision. Just wanted the thumbs-up from you first that this was okay
    2. When I was at the interviews I spoke to an E&M student and she said it was relatively mathsy, but she seemed only to be referring to a single unit whereas LSE have a variety of units on statistics and econometrics throughout all years of the degree. Since banks do look for a lot of Engineering/Maths grads I figured this would be an advantage, although I assume that this would mostly be for quants? If the course doesn't matter too much though then I guess I'll just wait and see if I get any offers. It's a nice problem to have, I suppose!
    3. I thought having a postgrad qualification may be an advantage if other applicants lacked that, or if STEM applicants have an integrated Masters. My friend also told me that some roles require Masters/PhD's, although he may be wrong. I do plan to get an internship in the summer anyway, but I guess to some extent it would just be for personal satisfaction to go to Oxbridge (provided I wasn't at Oxford already), so I probably wouldn't do a Masters elsewhere (perhaps LSE). Why, would it be better just to go straight into the job? I wouldn't have thought doing a Masters would actively hinder me, but you know better than I haha
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    (Original post by JRKinder)
    1. Thanks. I'm going to the Bristol open day in September just to check everything over, then I'll make my final decision. Just wanted the thumbs-up from you first that this was okay
    2. When I was at the interviews I spoke to an E&M student and she said it was relatively mathsy, but she seemed only to be referring to a single unit whereas LSE have a variety of units on statistics and econometrics throughout all years of the degree. Since banks do look for a lot of Engineering/Maths grads I figured this would be an advantage, although I assume that this would mostly be for quants? If the course doesn't matter too much though then I guess I'll just wait and see if I get any offers. It's a nice problem to have, I suppose!
    3. I thought having a postgrad qualification may be an advantage if other applicants lacked that, or if STEM applicants have an integrated Masters. My friend also told me that some roles require Masters/PhD's, although he may be wrong. I do plan to get an internship in the summer anyway, but I guess to some extent it would just be for personal satisfaction to go to Oxbridge (provided I wasn't at Oxford already), so I probably wouldn't do a Masters elsewhere (perhaps LSE). Why, would it be better just to go straight into the job? I wouldn't have thought doing a Masters would actively hinder me, but you know better than I haha
    1. No probs! Enjoy the open day, Bristol is beautiful. If you have time check out the open mall there

    2. Banks just look for smart people, they can teach you all that is needed to be learned during their training programmes and whilst on the job. Quantitative ability only helps if you know for sure you want to be in a more complex desk on e.g. the trading floor or in research. Full on Quants tend to have PhDs or Masters in a Maths/Engineering/Computer Science/Physics etc background and are the exception to the 'it doesn't matter what degree you do' rule.

    3. Nope. Postgrads in banking are for people who want a prestige bump (e.g. from a complete non-target to a semi-target/target) from their undegrad uni or didn't get into any of the programmes available to them whilst at undergrad. Again, quants are the exception. It would be better because that way you're not wasting £xxk when you could get a bonus that is equivalent to £xxk. If it TRULY is about personal interest, then go for it.

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    (Original post by Princepieman)
    1. No probs! Enjoy the open day, Bristol is beautiful. If you have time check out the open mall there

    2. Banks just look for smart people, they can teach you all that is needed to be learned during their training programmes and whilst on the job. Quantitative ability only helps if you know for sure you want to be in a more complex desk on e.g. the trading floor or in research. Full on Quants tend to have PhDs or Masters in a Maths/Engineering/Computer Science/Physics etc background and are the exception to the 'it doesn't matter what degree you do' rule.

    3. Nope. Postgrads in banking are for people who want a prestige bump (e.g. from a complete non-target to a semi-target/target) from their undegrad uni or didn't get into any of the programmes available to them whilst at undergrad. Again, quants are the exception. It would be better because that way you're not wasting £xxk when you could get a bonus that is equivalent to £xxk. If it TRULY is about personal interest, then go for it.

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    Thanks, I will! I know a couple of people who went there last year and said it was lovely, so I'm looking forward to it

    Ah okay, this is all general information that I lacked personally so this was all very informative for me. So as long as the choice of PPE or Economics doesn't matter, I think I'll wait and see if I actually get offers first and then make my choice. I personally think I'd perform better in LSE's degree since my maths ability > my essay-writing ability (and Oxford would be a LOT of writing in Politics and Philosophy, bar Logic), so if my chance of getting a 1st is increased then I guess LSE is the one to go for if I can stand to reject Oxford. Perhaps it would be easier not to get the Oxford offer lol

    Okay, as before I guess when I reach this stage I'll apply to a mixture of jobs and postgrad courses and see which ones I get into, and then weigh up the cost of not working for a year vs. how much I want to go to Cambridge (if I get the offer). Thanks for all your help, your posts were very useful!
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    (Original post by JRKinder)
    Thanks, I will! I know a couple of people who went there last year and said it was lovely, so I'm looking forward to it

    Ah okay, this is all general information that I lacked personally so this was all very informative for me. So as long as the choice of PPE or Economics doesn't matter, I think I'll wait and see if I actually get offers first and then make my choice. I personally think I'd perform better in LSE's degree since my maths ability > my essay-writing ability (and Oxford would be a LOT of writing in Politics and Philosophy, bar Logic), so if my chance of getting a 1st is increased then I guess LSE is the one to go for if I can stand to reject Oxford. Perhaps it would be easier not to get the Oxford offer lol

    Okay, as before I guess when I reach this stage I'll apply to a mixture of jobs and postgrad placements and see which ones I get into, and then weigh up the cost of not working for a year vs. how much I want to go to Cambridge (if I get the offer). Thanks for all your help, your posts were very useful!
    Nah, the moment you hit first year apply to spring weeks.

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    (Original post by Princepieman)
    Nah, the moment you hit first year apply to spring weeks.

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    Got it, thanks
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    (Original post by Princepieman)
    Nah, the moment you hit first year apply to spring weeks.

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    Hey Prince, I am about to start a Comp Sci course next week at Keele and was just wandering what i could do to make myself more employable after the course aside from a placement year which I have sorted out. Also, i mean COmp Sci related, i can figure the rest of the activities is my choice what I do, like volunteering, but in terms of any to talk about for job interviews to compete with other top students.
    PS- i'm not exactly sure what i want to do after the degree, but would vaguely like a job in tech which is well paid.Also, would their be a major difference between a first and 2:1 or would either put me in a strong position still for jobs.Cheers,Ben
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    (Original post by Cavverr56)
    Hey Prince, I am about to start a Comp Sci course next week at Keele and was just wandering what i could do to make myself more employable after the course aside from a placement year which I have sorted out. Also, i mean COmp Sci related, i can figure the rest of the activities is my choice what I do, like volunteering, but in terms of any to talk about for job interviews to compete with other top students.
    PS- i'm not exactly sure what i want to do after the degree, but would vaguely like a job in tech which is well paid.Also, would their be a major difference between a first and 2:1 or would either put me in a strong position still for jobs.Cheers,Ben
    Mostly:
    - get good grades
    - work on side projects from start to finish, and put the code/documentation on github. get a personal site with a portfolio
    - learn a few different languages and frameworks (e.g. Node.js, Ruby on Rails, C++, Java etc)
    - try to attend any hackathons that you can get to (just google hackathon UK for inspiration)
    - apply to internships (at big tech cos, banks' tech divisions, startups, consulting firms, nontech companies' IT department etc), every year + of course if you want to do the year in industry apply to those too
    - get acquainted with algorithms and data structures, do leetcode practice, get on projecteuler. buy cracking the coding interview
    - try to do some paid development work for clients

    Aside from that:
    - party
    - intermingle with the opposite sex (or same sex if that's how you lean)
    - generally just develop your social skills (could do debating, leadership roles in societies, whatever)
    - have fun
    - don't become a neurotic, hopelessly stressed human being
    - travel

    Good luck

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    (Original post by Princepieman)
    Mostly:
    - get good grades
    - work on side projects from start to finish, and put the code/documentation on github. get a personal site with a portfolio
    - learn a few different languages and frameworks (e.g. Node.js, Ruby on Rails, C++, Java etc)
    - try to attend any hackathons that you can get to (just google hackathon UK for inspiration)
    - apply to internships (at big tech cos, banks' tech divisions, startups, consulting firms, nontech companies' IT department etc), every year + of course if you want to do the year in industry apply to those too
    - get acquainted with algorithms and data structures, do leetcode practice, get on projecteuler. buy cracking the coding interview
    - try to do some paid development work for clients

    Aside from that:
    - party
    - intermingle with the opposite sex (or same sex if that's how you lean)
    - generally just develop your social skills (could do debating, leadership roles in societies, whatever)
    - have fun
    - don't become a neurotic, hopelessly stressed human being
    - travel

    Good luck

    Posted from TSR Mobile

    Perfect,
    Thanks
 
 
 
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