Getting into Oxbridge for Postgraduate Study Watch

playa
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#241
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Hi everyone,

I'm currently in first year of a BSc Mathematical Economics degree at University of Birmingham,
I have many extra curriculars going , I've established a financial society trying to organise an investment conference etc. I'm also a VP of the investment society and am working on gaining work experience at accounting firms/ investment banks and stock brokers etc.

If i get 70% + in my 2nd year (as first year doesnt count)...

what would my chances be like applying to MSc financial mathematics or Finance/ economics etc at LSE /oxbridge / warwick

Also what do u submit when applying postgrad...? CV and PS?

Please advise me, thanks
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rottcodd
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#242
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(Original post by playa)
Hi everyone,

I'm currently in first year of a BSc Mathematical Economics degree at University of Birmingham,
I have many extra curriculars going , I've established a financial society trying to organise an investment conference etc. I'm also a VP of the investment society and am working on gaining work experience at accounting firms/ investment banks and stock brokers etc.

If i get 70% + in my 2nd year (as first year doesnt count)...

what would my chances be like applying to MSc financial mathematics or economics etc at LSE /oxbridge / warwick

Also what do u submit when applying postgrad...? CV and PS?

Please advise me, thanks
How can we tell you your chances? Only an admissions tutor can tell you that. You are correct that your A-levels won't matter. What you need to do is go have a look at the entry requirements for an MSc in Financial Mathematics / Economics at LSE, Oxbridge, Warwick (which will be on their websites) and see if you satisfy the entry requirements (they will specify a degree class: normally a good 2.1, or a 1st). If you satisfy them, then you have a chance of getting in. Nobody on here can tell you a single bit more than that with regards to how likely you are to get in or not.

You apply by filling in the application form for the respective uni, which will be on their website. You will have to provide a PS, transcripts and references.
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playa
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(Original post by rottcodd)
How can we tell you your chances? Only an admissions tutor can tell you that. You are correct that your A-levels won't matter. What you need to do is go have a look at the entry requirements for an MSc in Financial Mathematics / Economics at LSE, Oxbridge, Warwick (which will be on their websites) and see if you satisfy the entry requirements (they will specify a degree class: normally a good 2.1, or a 1st). If you satsify them, then you have a chance of getting in.

You apply by filling in the application form for the respective uni, which will be on their website. You will have to provide a PS, transcripts and references.
yeh the highest i've come across is just a 1st, some say 2:1,
I meant what do they judge you on apart from the fact you have a 1st class?
surely most applicants will have that..
will they look at my work experience and EC's? they dont mention any of this..
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rottcodd
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(Original post by playa)
yeh the highest i've come across is just a 1st, some say 2:1,
I meant what do they judge you on apart from the fact you have a 1st class?
surely most applicants will have that..
will they look at my work experience and EC's? they dont mention any of this..
They will look at your entire application. Work experience and EC's relavent to the masters course could appear in your PS, or some application forms have a specific section where you can detail them. They will look at your transcript (which details all the grades you have received so far at your university), your personal statement (which will be nothing like the undergraduate one you've just written) and the two/three academic references that you provide, which will normally include some kind of predicition of what class you are expected to attain.
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Kitty Pimms
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(Original post by playa)
yeh the highest i've come across is just a 1st, some say 2:1,
I meant what do they judge you on apart from the fact you have a 1st class?
surely most applicants will have that..
will they look at my work experience and EC's? they dont mention any of this..
Not really. So long as you have strong academic credentials, good references, a strong statement or proposal, &c &c you should stand a good chance. If you have good relevant work experience then by all means mention it in the statement as it won't count against you, but at postgraduate level it's rarely what they're looking for.
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playa
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(Original post by IlexAquifolium)
Not really. So long as you have strong academic credentials, good references, a strong statement or proposal, &c &c you should stand a good chance. If you have good relevant work experience then by all means mention it in the statement as it won't count against you, but at postgraduate level it's rarely what they're looking for.
by strong academic credentials...do you mean only university grades?
My first year doesnt count toward my degree classification, will I still need a 1st? or can I just focus the second year (before applying)..

I am aiming for a 1st anyway, but just incase I dont get it
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playa
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(Original post by rottcodd)
They will look at your entire application. Work experience and EC's relavent to the masters course could appear in your PS, or some application forms have a specific section where you can detail them. They will look at your transcript (which details all the grades you have received so far at your university), your personal statement (which will be nothing like the undergraduate one you've just written) and the two/three academic references that you provide, which will normally include some kind of predicition of what class you are expected to attain.
from my past experience of doing undergrad applications, I met every single requirement, and exceeded it by quite a margin, yet I received some rejections from the universities. So yeah a 2:1 or 1st is required, which goes without saying really, but I want to know the best ways I can differentiate myself and prepare in advance...? such as the most relevent EC's and work exp etc..
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Kitty Pimms
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(Original post by playa)
by strong academic credentials...do you mean only university grades?
My first year doesnt count toward my degree classification, will I still need a 1st? or can I just focus the second year (before applying)..

I am aiming for a 1st anyway, but just incase I dont get it
Primarily university grades, yes. As for first year marks, if they don't count towards your final marks (and I'm aware that they don't since I did my undergraduate at Birmingham myself) then they're not formally important; but since you'll be applying at the beginning of your final year if your first year marks are abysmal it won't look good. Many people go from a 2.1 to a first, but picking up thirds in your first year may make it more difficult to convince your referees to predict you a first unless you're able to pull your second year marks up to a very high standard. This is particularly the case in a numerical subject, as some of the applicants are likely to have extremely high averages (80 or 90+).
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playa
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(Original post by IlexAquifolium)
Primarily university grades, yes. As for first year marks, if they don't count towards your final marks (and I'm aware that they don't since I did my undergraduate at Birmingham myself) then they're not formally important; but since you'll be applying at the beginning of your final year if your first year marks are abysmal it won't look good. Many people go from a 2.1 to a first, but picking up thirds in your first year may make it more difficult to convince your referees to predict you a first unless you're able to pull your second year marks up to a very high standard. This is particularly the case in a numerical subject, as some of the applicants are likely to have extremely high averages (80 or 90+).
Where did u do your postgrad?
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Kitty Pimms
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(Original post by playa)
Where did u do your postgrad?
I'd prefer not to say, but I did get an Oxbridge offer in the course of applying (hence posting in this thread!).
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playa
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(Original post by IlexAquifolium)
I'd prefer not to say, but I did get an Oxbridge offer in the course of applying (hence posting in this thread!).
Oh ok cool..
I know for a fact, from previous eexperience applying to undergrad at LSE etc that they look for more than just academic performance. For example my AS was 5As and i still got rejected with a good PS, whereas my friend got accepted..
So i want to prepare in advance / and find the best way of differentiating myself and becoming a greater candidate for an MSc in finance at oxbridge. Any thoughts about this..?
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Kitty Pimms
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(Original post by playa)
Oh ok cool..
I know for a fact, from previous eexperience applying to undergrad at LSE etc that they look for more than just academic performance. For example my AS was 5As and i still got rejected with a good PS, whereas my friend got accepted..
So i want to prepare in advance / and find the best way of differentiating myself and becoming a greater candidate for an MSc in finance at oxbridge. Any thoughts about this..?
Postgraduate is different. As an undergraduate applicant they have very little to differentiate between you. However, very few people will be applying with 80+ averages and three stunning references from sterling Professors; those people are likely to be given a place straight off. Other than that, bolstering your application with work experience &c, particularly in the financial sphere, will be helpful. But the best way to help yourself is to do spectacularly well at your undergraduate degree.

I will quote Drogue since he'll probably be more helpful/authoritative than me:

(Original post by Drogue)
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playa
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(Original post by IlexAquifolium)
Postgraduate is different. As an undergraduate applicant they have very little to differentiate between you. However, very few people will be applying with 80+ averages and three stunning references from sterling Professors; those people are likely to be given a place straight off. Other than that, bolstering your application with work experience &c, particularly in the financial sphere, will be helpful. But the best way to help yourself is to do spectacularly well at your undergraduate degree.

I will quote Drogue since he'll probably be more helpful/authoritative than me:

this is what oxford say

However, previous academic excellence is key and students who are accepted for graduate study at Oxford tend to have been those who achieved the very highest results of their graduating class.

Postgraduate Diploma: Upper second-class undergraduate degree or above or the equivalent level in Mathematics or a related subject
Also some experience with a programming language (preferably Matlab or C++). Several years’ professional work experience in a financial institution or similar environment would be ideal
MSc: Students must first successfully study for the Postgraduate Diploma in Mathematical Finance and may then apply to progress to study for the MSc award.

LSE generally have a 1:10 position to applicant ratio.... Are these applicants all holding 1st class degree's? or do people apply regardless
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probably not
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i bet they don't have a 1:10 position to offer ratio
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Kitty Pimms
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(Original post by playa)

LSE generally have a 1:10 position to applicant ratio.... Are these applicants all holding 1st class degree's? or do people apply regardless
A very quick sweep through the Postgrad forum will tell you that people apply regardless - try doing a search for 'LSE MSc Finance', for example.
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playa
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(Original post by probably not)
i bet they don't have a 1:10 position to offer ratio
what do you mean?
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Kitty Pimms
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(Original post by playa)
what do you mean?
He means that they make more offers than they have places, so you have a greater than 1:10 chance of getting in.

(Original post by IlexAquifolium)
A very quick sweep through the Postgrad forum will tell you that people apply regardless - try doing a search for 'LSE MSc Finance', for example.
Actually, I wasn't being sarky above - if you search the postgrad forum, practically every other post is from an international student asking if their (below the standard) GPA is good enough for an application to the LSE. Thank you for the zero neg anyway. I'll stop trying to be helpful from now on.
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playa
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(Original post by IlexAquifolium)
He means that they make more offers than they have places, so you have a greater than 1:10 chance of getting in.



Actually, I wasn't being sarky above - if you search the postgrad forum, practically every other post is from an international student asking if their (below the standard) GPA is good enough for an application to the LSE. Thank you for the zero neg anyway. I'll stop trying to be helpful from now on.
sorry I clickd positive rep appreciate your help ...
I just had a browse now, yeah there are alot of threads on this I willl look into it more
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Kitty Pimms
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(Original post by playa)
sorry I clickd positive rep appreciate your help ...
I just had a browse now, yeah there are alot of threads on this I willl look into it more
LOL, don't worry about it. (The default rep's been changed to negative, and since there wasn't a comment attached I wasn't sure - gave me a bit of a shock!).

Basically, don't worry. The LSE in particular charge very high fees (£17 for their economics MSc, IIRC) so they are forced to make significantly more offers than they have places to mitigate the fact that a lot of people won't be able to cough up once given the place. So, if you apply with the grades and are able to finance it, you ought to have a good chance.
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playa
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(Original post by IlexAquifolium)
LOL, don't worry about it. (The default rep's been changed to negative, and since there wasn't a comment attached I wasn't sure - gave me a bit of a shock!).

Basically, don't worry. The LSE in particular charge very high fees (£17 for their economics MSc, IIRC) so they are forced to make significantly more offers than they have places to mitigate the fact that a lot of people won't be able to cough up once given the place. So, if you apply with the grades and are able to finance it, you ought to have a good chance.
Thats awesome.. yea I will cough it up, , just need to work on the first now .. and its immensely hard ! this is definitely my intention I hope it will also coincide with a period of economic growth as my objective is to enter securities trading, 2012 graduation is a decent bet
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