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    I'm nearing the end of my first term at Oxford studying Chemistry. I am seriously considering dropping out as the workload is so great that I struggle to find time to do my washing, let alone socialise and join clubs. I have never worked this hard in my life, not even in the build up to my Alevels, and I am losing my motivation for the course. I really enjoy some parts of the course but I hate the other half, especially labs as I find them incredibly stressful. I am someone who enjoys working and being pushed so thought Oxford would suit me well. My whole family has gone to university and so I feel like I should just get on with it. The other chemists in my college seem very competitive and usually don't bother replying when I'm just trying to clarify part of a question, even though I try my best to help them. I have been very unhappy this term and have just found myself counting down until the point where I can go back home. I don't know what to do.
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    My older brother is in his last 3rd year at Cambridge doing Music Technology and my cousin is in his last 4th year at Oxford (same uni as you ) doing Geology and trust me, they both had the same reactions as you over Skype but you know what? I'm going to say keep working hard in your studies and until you graduate with a decent degree in your course, you can focus on your social life as much as you want that's what I told my two relatives and they seemed calmer. Hope I helped
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    Hello babingtonplot,

    It's a tough situation, and unfortunately, you are not alone. The same worry comes up for some people at every Uni, but of course, when you are at Oxford there can be a feeling of extra pressure at having achieved your - or your family's - dream, only to find it turning sour. It certainly happened to me, many years ago, and I didn't handle it well.

    Since this is a theme that does recur, I wonder if it might be helpful to look at the accumulated advice from similar recent threads?

    This one kicks off in 2013 - also with a Chemist!

    http://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/show...=#post66741042

    (Pages 7 and 8 of the replies are maybe the most recent and relevant....)


    And this is the most recent - an English student:

    http://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/show...110&highlight=

    That's not meant to deflect you from asking more on this thread, of course....
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    (Original post by ShiawaseNekox3)
    My older brother is in his last 3rd year at Cambridge doing Music Technology
    That's not a thing at Cambridge.
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    (Original post by babingtonplot)
    I'm nearing the end of my first term at Oxford studying Chemistry. I am seriously considering dropping out as the workload is so great that I struggle to find time to do my washing, let alone socialise and join clubs. I have never worked this hard in my life, not even in the build up to my Alevels, and I am losing my motivation for the course. I really enjoy some parts of the course but I hate the other half, especially labs as I find them incredibly stressful. I am someone who enjoys working and being pushed so thought Oxford would suit me well. My whole family has gone to university and so I feel like I should just get on with it. The other chemists in my college seem very competitive and usually don't bother replying when I'm just trying to clarify part of a question, even though I try my best to help them. I have been very unhappy this term and have just found myself counting down until the point where I can go back home. I don't know what to do.
    Hey!

    Really sorry to hear you are struggling so much. It seems that Chemistry is a particularly brutal course - as alluded to above, you're not the first person on TSR to have wanted to drop out. Having such feelings, whilst it feels incredibly isolating for the person/people in question, is sadly more common than you might think at Oxford. The workload is a mammoth step up for everyone and it can take a whole term, a whole year, or even the whole course to adjust.

    As ever: have you articulated how you are feeling to anyone at the uni? Your course tutors, or any welfare staff? There is no shame in leaving but my advice is don't drop out with exploring/exhausting every avenue.

    Tagging BJack and Jeykayem as they might be able to give course-specific advice :yes:



    (Original post by Masor)
    That's not a thing at Cambridge.
    Indeed! I can only assume they meant Anglia Ruskin, which is in Cambridge area but not Cambridge the uni :yes:
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    (Original post by babingtonplot)
    I'm nearing the end of my first term at Oxford studying Chemistry. I am seriously considering dropping out as the workload is so great that I struggle to find time to do my washing, let alone socialise and join clubs. I have never worked this hard in my life, not even in the build up to my Alevels, and I am losing my motivation for the course. I really enjoy some parts of the course but I hate the other half, especially labs as I find them incredibly stressful. I am someone who enjoys working and being pushed so thought Oxford would suit me well. My whole family has gone to university and so I feel like I should just get on with it. The other chemists in my college seem very competitive and usually don't bother replying when I'm just trying to clarify part of a question, even though I try my best to help them. I have been very unhappy this term and have just found myself counting down until the point where I can go back home. I don't know what to do.
    "The course is challenging but there is plenty of time for extra-curricular pursuits."
    https://www.ox.ac.uk/admissions/unde...emistry?wssl=1

    If all else fails, you have them on advertising standards.

    Still, in reality, it does sound pretty hard for you and I sympathise. The only people I knew at Ox doing Chem also reported it being extremely tough. I suspect that overwork is pretty much the norm.

    I can't remember if Chem is one of the courses you can potentially change from to something else - that might be something to consider if it is.

    Have you discussed your difficulties with Tutes? It usually helps to ime, even if they seem quite tough or disinterested to start with.
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    (Original post by babingtonplot)
    I'm nearing the end of my first term at Oxford studying Chemistry. I am seriously considering dropping out as the workload is so great that I struggle to find time to do my washing, let alone socialise and join clubs. I have never worked this hard in my life, not even in the build up to my Alevels, and I am losing my motivation for the course. I really enjoy some parts of the course but I hate the other half, especially labs as I find them incredibly stressful. I am someone who enjoys working and being pushed so thought Oxford would suit me well. My whole family has gone to university and so I feel like I should just get on with it. The other chemists in my college seem very competitive and usually don't bother replying when I'm just trying to clarify part of a question, even though I try my best to help them. I have been very unhappy this term and have just found myself counting down until the point where I can go back home. I don't know what to do.
    We are sorry to hear you are finding things difficult at the moment. Our advice would be to access welfare support with a view to identifying the best person to talk confidentially about your problems. Your college should provide details. Talking to a trained listener should help identify the options that are best for you as it is hard to tackle this type of problem on your own.
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    (Original post by Masor)
    That's not a thing at Cambridge.
    Uh, yeah it is, check out music technology at the website you melt 😂😂😂


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    (Original post by ShiawaseNekox3)
    Uh, yeah it is, check out music technology at the website you melt 😂😂😂


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    Provide us with a link?
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    Or possibly just "Music" at Cambridge? Surely an application ratio of 2:1 has got to be a record for Oxbridge!
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    (Original post by The_Lonely_Goatherd)
    Provide us with a link?
    http://www.undergraduate.study.cam.ac.uk/courses/music


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    (Original post by MonteCristo)
    Or possibly just "Music" at Cambridge? Surely an application ratio of 2:1 has got to be a record for Oxbridge!
    Well, he did say music technology when he was leaving for Cambridge


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    (Original post by babingtonplot)
    I'm nearing the end of my first term at Oxford studying Chemistry. I am seriously considering dropping out as the workload is so great that I struggle to find time to do my washing, let alone socialise and join clubs. I have never worked this hard in my life, not even in the build up to my Alevels, and I am losing my motivation for the course. I really enjoy some parts of the course but I hate the other half, especially labs as I find them incredibly stressful. I am someone who enjoys working and being pushed so thought Oxford would suit me well. My whole family has gone to university and so I feel like I should just get on with it. The other chemists in my college seem very competitive and usually don't bother replying when I'm just trying to clarify part of a question, even though I try my best to help them. I have been very unhappy this term and have just found myself counting down until the point where I can go back home. I don't know what to do.
    Not really sure how to help however im a 3rd year chemist, if you need any help regarding topics or any questions do shoot me a PM.

    In terms of dropping out, thats up to you, only you know if thats a decision worth making, have you thought about other courses?
    Is it chemistry or oxford, either way you could drop out and apply for a different course or a different university.
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    (Original post by babingtonplot)
    I'm nearing the end of my first term at Oxford studying Chemistry. I am seriously considering dropping out as the workload is so great that I struggle to find time to do my washing, let alone socialise and join clubs. I have never worked this hard in my life, not even in the build up to my Alevels, and I am losing my motivation for the course. I really enjoy some parts of the course but I hate the other half, especially labs as I find them incredibly stressful. I am someone who enjoys working and being pushed so thought Oxford would suit me well. My whole family has gone to university and so I feel like I should just get on with it. The other chemists in my college seem very competitive and usually don't bother replying when I'm just trying to clarify part of a question, even though I try my best to help them. I have been very unhappy this term and have just found myself counting down until the point where I can go back home. I don't know what to do.
    Hiya! Sorry you're feeling like this :emo: we've actually just started up a new forum on help with whether or not to drop out of uni. Next Monday we're doing a Q&A with a range of experts - you could ask a question if you're still not sure?
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    (Original post by babingtonplot)
    I'm nearing the end of my first term at Oxford studying Chemistry. I am seriously considering dropping out as the workload is so great that I struggle to find time to do my washing, let alone socialise and join clubs. I have never worked this hard in my life, not even in the build up to my Alevels, and I am losing my motivation for the course. I really enjoy some parts of the course but I hate the other half, especially labs as I find them incredibly stressful. I am someone who enjoys working and being pushed so thought Oxford would suit me well. My whole family has gone to university and so I feel like I should just get on with it. The other chemists in my college seem very competitive and usually don't bother replying when I'm just trying to clarify part of a question, even though I try my best to help them. I have been very unhappy this term and have just found myself counting down until the point where I can go back home. I don't know what to do.
    I'm really sorry you're feeling this way, big hugs.

    Firstly, it's important to remember you're not at all alone in feeling this way. A student in my year at uni (UCL) had a terrible time at Oxford and dropped out after 2 terms, restarting at UCL the next year. She said that she found the other students unhelpful and too competitive, the lecturers dismissive, the work/social balance too stressful and just generally didn't like Oxford at all. We're now all graduating this year, and she's enjoyed her time here, far as I know.

    I have no personal experience of Oxbridge but close friends who have gone have told similar stories of the stress it puts you under. Some universities are not for everyone - and that doesn't mean you're not smart enough. Like some people come to UCL and realise after a term that they'd rather go jump on hot coals than live in London for 3+ years. I think at school, the 'top' universities are glorified to such an extent that there's no stopping to consider any negatives. There's most definitely pros and cons to ALL universities, Oxbridge being no exception.

    I'm not saying you should drop out, as that's one massive personal decision, obviously. But don't write it off. You will not be a 'failure' or 'dumb' for not carrying on at Oxford - it might just not be the place for you.

    In the meantime - ask Oxbridge students on here how they coped with the pressure, talk to your academic tutor if you feel able to (you will not be the first or the last to feel this way), and maybe sit down with a pen and paper and really write down the pros and cons of each option. Maybe stick it out until Christmas and reevaluate - first term at uni is tough anywhere, not just Oxbridge, and it's a big step from school. You might even find that things improve. Or think about the course you're taking - is it definitely what you'd want to do for 3 years? Is there another course you could enjoy more? Even transferring courses could be an option to look into.

    All best wishes to you and remember that whatever you end up doing - there's always a second option or another choice that can be made
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    I felt exactly the same after my first term of natural sciences at Cambridge. I just couldn't believe how much work there was (I estimated about 3 times as much as friends at other Russell Group unis), and how hard it was. I was used to breezing through every subject with straight As, and to find myself sitting in a lecture just unable to follow what was going on was really hard.

    However, I didn't drop out, and I'm so glad I didn't. I scraped through the first year with a 2.2, and things got better in the second year. In the third I picked options that I really enjoyed, and ended up with a 1st (and I've now got a PhD).

    Studying at Oxford is a huge privilege, so I would really recommend not dropping out after 1 term. Remember, the tutors think you can handle it otherwise they would not have accepted you. See how you feel at the end of the year when you have your exam results before making any huge decision like this. It is possible (sometimes) to transfer at the start of the second year of a degree somewhere else.
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    (Original post by Masor)
    That's not a thing at Cambridge.
    Probably confusing Cambridge for Anglia Ruskin :laugh:
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    Feel even worse because I'm doing mathematics. There is so much work. Some days I just say **** it and not go to any lectures and sleep all day because of how sleep deprived I get.
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    (Original post by babingtonplot)
    I'm nearing the end of my first term at Oxford studying Chemistry. I am seriously considering dropping out as the workload is so great that I struggle to find time to do my washing, let alone socialise and join clubs. I have never worked this hard in my life, not even in the build up to my Alevels, and I am losing my motivation for the course. I really enjoy some parts of the course but I hate the other half, especially labs as I find them incredibly stressful. I am someone who enjoys working and being pushed so thought Oxford would suit me well. My whole family has gone to university and so I feel like I should just get on with it. The other chemists in my college seem very competitive and usually don't bother replying when I'm just trying to clarify part of a question, even though I try my best to help them. I have been very unhappy this term and have just found myself counting down until the point where I can go back home. I don't know what to do.
    The first year is hard, but stick with it - it will get easier. At least the terms are short.
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    (Original post by jambojim97)
    Probably confusing Cambridge for Anglia Ruskin :laugh:
    Who me? No, I'm mean Cambridge 😂


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