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    (Original post by dragonkeeper999)
    Do I regret going to Cambridge... ?

    This is a very difficult question, to a certain extent Cambridge has offered me so much I would perhaps not have got elsewhere, however I have also experienced so much stress and frustration during my time here. If I was to rewind the clock I really don't know if, knowing what I have been through (both positive and negative) these past 3.5 years, I would make the same decision.

    Positives:
    • I learnt lots of stuff - not to say you can't learn stuff elsewhere, but the supervision system in particular has really made sure I understand everything we have been learning
    • Access to internships/ careers opportunities - now, I can't say that other universities aren't also very good at this, but at Cambridge I've been lucky enough to attend countless employer presentations/ networking sessions, go on insight days, and it did seem to give me a helping hand in internship applications (in that friends elsewhere with similar academics/ experience otherwise struggled a lot more - but that's obviously a tiny sample size)
    • Financially - Cambridge doubled my maintenance grant, gave me a very generous scholarship (admittedly paid by a private company, but it was only available for students at certain universities, pretty much all "top" ones), and has (through various grants) massively supported my personal travels and sports
    • So many extracurricular opportunities - sports, outreach work, extra lectures/ talks, music - all at both super relaxed and university levels

    Negatives:
    • STRESS - so much stress... Even having balanced twice the standard workload during A levels I still found coping with Cambridge incredibly challenging. It wasn't so much the quality of work as the lack of guidelines and support in producing it - no past paper markschemes, no set syllabus, no example coursework pieces, no guidelines on what is expected in coursework, no retake opportunities, hardly any coursework credit (lots of work, for a very small percentage of our overall grade), ridiculously time pressured exams, no real attempt to ensure examiners or lab supervisors are marking to the same standard, etc.
    • Grade based partly on your ranking (at least in the first few years), making for a very competitive and non-supportive atmosphere among students - which contributed towards a focus on passing exams and getting good coursework marks rather than just learning overall
    • College inequalities - they all claim to be "basically the same" but in reality there are so many inequalities between the colleges, I'm not going to list them all here but essentially the quality of academic support and even things like accommodation quality/ prices vary so much
    • No year abroad/ placement year opportunities/ support - I really had to FIGHT to be allowed to take a year out for my year abroad (which was independently organised and didn't count towards my degree), and they seem totally uninterested in providing work experience or international opportunities for students, despite it being really valuable for your career.
    • Banning part-time jobs - they make us feel like kids by imposing such restrictions on what we can and cannot do with our spare time
    Very very similar to my daughter's experience.
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    (Original post by jadeemma)
    Thank you everyone for all the help and advice on my original post! Just got another question, what's more important to employers, where the degree is studied at, or the level of the degree? For example is a 2.1 from Cambridge considedered better than a 1st from Bath?
    Neither really, employers look to employ good people not good universities or degree classifications. If you have a 2.1+ then that's useful as many grad schemes use that as an initial filter (rightly or wrongly).

    I expect others will post that of course Oxbridge is better in an employer's eye, but honestly it really isn't. A good employer looks beyond the "brand" and tries to find out about *you*.

    Sure "Cambridge" can be a shorthand for "high achiever" or whatever, but there's plenty of Oxbridge grads who haven't just waltzed into a career on the back of their university.

    Both Cambridge and Bath (and "lesser" universities) can give you a very good education, and opportunities, but it's up to the student to make the most of them.
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    (Original post by daniilS)
    I know some people did that and got an offer, even saw one on TSR recently. I think unless you personally offended the interviewer the first time it's not too dangerous to give the same college another try if you really like it
    Sometimes the college (if asked) does say they would welcome a reapplication. e.g. Insight314
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    (Original post by daniilS)
    I know some people did that and got an offer, even saw one on TSR recently. I think unless you personally offended the interviewer the first time it's not too dangerous to give the same college another try if you really like it
    I'd just feel awkward if they say something that suggests they recognise me from the year before :lol:
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    (Original post by Samendra)
    Consulting, law (for the top 1-2 firms though other top unis wont hold you back), politics to an extent aswell.
    Nope not a pre-requisite.

    And, specifically, firms like Deloitte and Clifford Chance are leading the way with "university-blind" grad recruiting.
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    (Original post by jneill)
    Sometimes the college (if asked) does say they would welcome a reapplication. e.g. Insight314
    I don't want to quote specifics, but the AT of Churchill basically said that re-applying to the same college does not disadvantage an application and that Churchill handles all applications the same way. He also mentioned that re-applicants usually apply to different college just so that their application is viewed from a fresh perspective (even though it officially is).

    (Original post by NeverLucky)
    I'd just feel awkward if they say something that suggests they recognise me from the year before :lol:
    Why feel awkward lol? I wish they said something to me but I had a different interviewer than last year (probably on purpose).
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    (Original post by Insight314)
    I don't want to quote specifics, but the AT of Churchill basically said that re-applying to the same college does not disadvantage an application and that Churchill handles all applications the same way. He also mentioned that re-applicants usually apply to different college just so that their application is viewed from a fresh perspective (even though it officially is).
    The only thing I would be worried about is that although I would apply to a different college, music has so many interviews (usually 3 w/ audition, although 6-7 is not uncommon) that I could be interviewed by the same people as last year by having some interviews allocated there xDD
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    (Original post by jadeemma)
    Thank you everyone for all the help and advice on my original post! Just got another question, what's more important to employers, where the degree is studied at, or the level of the degree? For example is a 2.1 from Cambridge considedered better than a 1st from Bath?
    Neither really. This thing you hear around that all employers go wide-eyed when they see an applicant has come from Oxbridge is a myth. Once you're out of the bubble of university and looking for jobs in the real world, where you got your degree, and to a certain extent even your grade doesn't count for much. It's how you perform at interviews and assessment centres.

    I've got a degree from Cambridge and am unemployed, having been beaten in assessment centres by people who had degrees from places like Manchester, Liverpool, LSE etc. An Oxbridge degree is not the golden ticket to a job and an amazing life as it may have been in the past.
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    (Original post by Insight314)
    I don't want to quote specifics, but the AT of Churchill basically said that re-applying to the same college does not disadvantage an application and that Churchill handles all applications the same way. He also mentioned that re-applicants usually apply to different college just so that their application is viewed from a fresh perspective (even though it officially is).



    Why feel awkward lol? I wish they said something to me but I had a different interviewer than last year (probably on purpose).
    It'll be more of just a self-conscious feeling I think if I was to get interviewed by the same people as the year before. Regardless, I'm happy with where I've ended up. I never really considered all the colleges the first time round.
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      (Original post by vincrows)
      But grades are not the only nor the most important thing they look at when assessing candidates.
      Well... They are in the sense that if you don't clear that bar, no amount of potential you could display in an interview will make up for it.
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      (Original post by auburnstar)
      The only thing I would be worried about is that although I would apply to a different college, music has so many interviews (usually 3 w/ audition, although 6-7 is not uncommon) that I could be interviewed by the same people as last year by having some interviews allocated there xDD
      DD Cambridge experience was that her music interviews (2) were by the college she applied to only and she also undertook 2 exams set by the college. Her research beforehand found that each college varied slightly but only one gave the opportunity to audition on an instrument but many commonly had aural tests.
      If you apply for a choral scholarship you may see music directors from many colleges.

      Did you apply to Oxford this year or Cambridge?
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      (Original post by jadeemma)
      I've received an offer from Cambridge for Maths and heard how demanding the course is and the amount of hard work required! Does anyone wish they went to a different Uni? Plus what are the parties and nights out like?
      I'm at Oxford and I tell myself this:

      'Don't quit. Suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion'
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      (Original post by wonderland2)
      DD Cambridge experience was that her music interviews (2) were by the college she applied to only and she also undertook 2 exams set by the college. Her research beforehand found that each college varied slightly but only one gave the opportunity to audition on an instrument but many commonly had aural tests.
      If you apply for a choral scholarship you may see music directors from many colleges.

      Did you apply to Oxford this year or Cambridge?
      That's interesting. I had two interviews at my chosen college and then one interview at another college, with an audition at the faculty (assessed by the tutors from my chosen college). But I also knew of someone who had 6 interviews (3 of them being at chosen college and the other three at 3 different colleges). I applied for Oxford this year.
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      (Original post by auburnstar)
      That's interesting. I had two interviews at my chosen college and then one interview at another college, with an audition at the faculty (assessed by the tutors from my chosen college). But I also knew of someone who had 6 interviews (3 of them being at chosen college and the other three at 3 different colleges). I applied for Oxford this year.
      Oxford =/= Cambridge.

      Oxford typically interviews far fewer applicants, but interviews them more times.
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      (Original post by jneill)
      Oxford =/= Cambridge.

      Oxford typically interviews far fewer applicants, but interviews them more times.
      I preferred Oxford. My time at Cambridge was riddled with bad vibes.
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      (Original post by jneill)
      Oxford =/= Cambridge.
      How often I forget this truism!!
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      (Original post by Hydeman)
      Well... They are in the sense that if you don't clear that bar, no amount of potential you could display in an interview will make up for it.
      Not necessarily.
      Cambridge doesn't have any fixed weighting for any aspect of application. They look at each candidate individually and holistically. That's why many with lower than average (for Cambridge applicants) can get offer, and that's because they show strength in other parts of application and that can be their interview. What grades present is a candidate's educational past up to now. At interviews they try to see what sort of potential candidates have in them even it might have not been obvious from their grades mainly because of social/educational backgrounds and also try to find/assess how they would be like at Cambridge; ie: if they suit their style of teaching = supervisions.
      The height of 'bar' can vary from candidate to candidate, depending upon their other parts of application/profile.
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      (Original post by trustmeimlying1)
      I preferred Oxford. My time at Cambridge was riddled with bad vibes.
      Did you apply for one one year and the other the next?

      I realised that A*AA or above would open the possibility of a Cambridge application for me. I was put off by their use of exams during interviews, A* requirement and the location (Oxford is more convenient and has imo more practice spaces). However, maybe it would be wiser to apply to Cam so long as my AS UMS isn't a barrier?
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        (Original post by vincrows)
        Not necessarily.
        Cambridge doesn't have any fixed weighting for any aspect of application. They look at each candidate individually and holistically. That's why many with lower than average (for Cambridge applicants) can get offer, and that's because they show strength in other parts of application and that can be their interview. What grades present is a candidate's educational past up to now. At interviews they try to see what sort of potential candidates have in them even it might have not been obvious from their grades mainly because of social/educational backgrounds and also try to find/assess how they would be like at Cambridge; ie: if they suit their style of teaching = supervisions.
        The height of 'bar' can vary from candidate to candidate, depending upon their other parts of application/profile.
        I think you've misunderstood. What I meant was that you need a certain academic profile in order to be considered for an interview in the first place. Until last year, without extenuating circumstances (which don't include socio-economic/educational background, unless it's something like a high turnover of teachers/no teacher in a relevant subject for a significant period), a UMS average less than 85 percent would have made it unlikely that you would be called for interview.

        As 85 - 100 percent is a fairly small range (albeit one in which most Cambridge applicants probably fall) the grades are the first hurdle which, if not cleared, make any potential you might have displayed at interview irrelevant.
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        (Original post by Hydeman)
        I think you've misunderstood. What I meant was that you need a certain academic profile in order to be considered for an interview in the first place. Until last year, without extenuating circumstances (which don't include socio-economic/educational background, unless it's something like a high turnover of teachers/no teacher in a relevant subject for a significant period), a UMS average less than 85 percent would have made it unlikely that you would be called for interview.

        As 85 - 100 percent is a fairly small range (albeit one in which most Cambridge applicants probably fall) the grades are the first hurdle which, if not cleared, make any potential you might have displayed at interview irrelevant.
        the way you put in in your earlier post is asking for being misunderstood, and what we were talking about before you came is was how a candidate who had interview are assessed, not whether an applicant with certain grades can be invited for interview or not.
       
       
       
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