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Would I be wasting my time applying to Oxbridge? Watch

  • View Poll Results: Do I have a chance of going to Oxbridge?
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    (Original post by Abstract_Prism)
    For all courses Durham and LSE have a reputation for caring a lot about GCSEs

    Extenuating circumstances make it a whole different ball game
    It's barely mentioned in my UCAS form, think there's just a line about it, whereas there was a whole form for Cambridge complete with copies of medical letters.
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    (Original post by SteamboatMickey)
    Honestly just go for it. I was in a similiar position last year. I was asking frantic questions on here because I hate the thought of wasting my time. I have pretty bad GCSE grades but I'm sitting here with a Cambridge History offer. Just work your butt off
    Wow well done!x What were your GCSE grades?x
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    (Original post by sunshine774)
    Wow well done!x What were your GCSE grades?x
    they're on the second page of this thread :-)
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    (Original post by SteamboatMickey)
    they're on the second page of this thread :-)
    Oh yeah thanks anyway!x:p:H
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    (Original post by isabellal18)
    I recieved 12 A*s at iGCSE and am predicted a 44/45 for my IB Diploma, yet I was rejected pre-interview for Law at Oxford even though someone with lower grades than I had received an offer.
    Sorry to hear you got rejected but that shows it's not just about GCSE grades doesn't it...

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    (Original post by jneill)
    Sorry to hear you got rejected but that shows it's not just about GCSE grades doesn't it...

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    Well yes I guess but an application is made up of many factors and GCSEs make up a large proportion of it judging by what I've heard from the numerous Oxbridge professors I've spoken to whilst on visits to both Cambridge and Oxford. My school's careers counsellor contacted the college who had informed him that the reason for my rejection was that my LNAT wasn't strong enough as I had applied for Law, not because of my GCSEs (I realise I should have been clearer). I understand completely that GCSEs aren't that much of a determining factor but judging by the number of students that apply for the Oxbridge, the stronger the whole of your application is, the higher chance you'll get an offer.
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    (Original post by jneill)
    Sorry to hear you got rejected but that shows it's not just about GCSE grades doesn't it...

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    Yep happened to me too! Got perfect grades and was rejected post interview and people with significantly worse grades got in! I genuinely mean it 100% when I say it really is about passion about the subject (and entrance test) my advice to anyone is do everything to do with your subject read everything try everything. Passion will trump grades 9 times out of 10. Not like other unis where you could think grades come first and then passion.
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    I'd say you have more of a chance at Cambridge (pretty decent chance, particularly because they interview a higher percentage of applicants so you have a greater chance to show them your passion for politics IRL).

    Failing that, UCL, Durham, etc. would be good bets while also remaining prestigious... LSE do look at GCSEs a LOT though so maybe not there!
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    (Original post by Lauren1498x)
    Yep happened to me too! Got perfect grades and was rejected post interview and people with significantly worse grades got in! I genuinely mean it 100% when I say it really is about passion about the subject (and entrance test) my advice to anyone is do everything to do with your subject read everything try everything. Passion will trump grades 9 times out of 10. Not like other unis where you could think grades come first and then passion.
    But what sucks so much is that without an interview or anything it's pretty much down to your personal statement to truly show this passion I completely agree with you, no matter how confident you are in getting into Oxbridge, at the end of the day, nobody truly knows whether or not you can actually get the offer.
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    (Original post by isabellal18)
    But what sucks so much is that without an interview or anything it's pretty much down to your personal statement to truly show this passion I completely agree with you, no matter how confident you are in getting into Oxbridge, at the end of the day, nobody truly knows whether or not you can actually get the offer.
    my friend got rejected pre interview for law and yet got early acceptance to durham and bristol, i think because his lnat was super good - not entirely sure, so knows why oxford didn't want him. I'm pretty sure I got rejected for applying to the wrong course - at the interviews the people who I talked to knew so much about politics and although I enjoyed the interview I spoke mainly about economics, and my ps was mainly history & economics. It annoys me because i worked so hard to get great grades, but the people who got in from my school are literally obsessed with their subject and I don't think I showed enough in the ps or interview. It sucks but oxbridge isn't the be all and end all
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    (Original post by Lauren1498x)
    my friend got rejected pre interview for law and yet got early acceptance to durham and bristol, i think because his lnat was super good - not entirely sure, so knows why oxford didn't want him. I'm pretty sure I got rejected for applying to the wrong course - at the interviews the people who I talked to knew so much about politics and although I enjoyed the interview I spoke mainly about economics, and my ps was mainly history & economics. It annoys me because i worked so hard to get great grades, but the people who got in from my school are literally obsessed with their subject and I don't think I showed enough in the ps or interview. It sucks but oxbridge isn't the be all and end all
    Ahh true true it's pretty hard to show passion for a subject you haven't truly studied essentially. But you should be proud that you got the interview though, that's amazing just knowing that you were shortlisted for Oxbridge! Congratulations on that Your grades will get you too great places I know it, and that just means that Oxbridge just wasn't right for you and besides, as you said, not getting into Oxbridge doesn't mean it's the end of the world HAHA tons of amazing universities out there!
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    (Original post by isabellal18)
    Ahh true true it's pretty hard to show passion for a subject you haven't truly studied essentially. But you should be proud that you got the interview though, that's amazing just knowing that you were shortlisted for Oxbridge! Congratulations on that Your grades will get you too great places I know it, and that just means that Oxbridge just wasn't right for you and besides, as you said, not getting into Oxbridge doesn't mean it's the end of the world HAHA tons of amazing universities out there!
    Exactly, everything will be ok in the end! Good luck to you too x
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    OP, just to give my thoughts here, I'd say definitely go on ahead and apply to Oxbridge, whichever one you're leaning more so towards. You don't want to be thinking 'what if' years down the line. You have five options on our UCAS form anyway, letting yourself choose Oxbridge as one choice leaves you with four potential other universities to consider, so why on earth not apply where you want to.

    I'd have to agree with the other TSR'ians posting that GCSE's do matter, but if you show an upwards curve and absolutely smash your A-Levels, they wouldn't disregard your results. Plus, as you put it, you went to a secondary school which wasn't as good as where you are now, so I'm sure they'll look at that contextually.

    If it's of any consolation, I'm sat here having initially failed my first AS year, having come out with two U's. So, I changed some of my subjects in a retake year, got ABBB last year (which isn't the best, truth be told) and yet, I still have an offer from Oxford to read Theology and Religion! Shocking, I know.

    Although, to be fair, coming from an awful area and going to an abysmal school definitely helped my chances. Point being here, I was considering not applying, and had I allowed everyone else's negativity cloud my own judgement, I wouldn't be holding my offer today. Anything is possible. However, you do need to work hard at achieving the grades necessary and show an undying passion for the course you're applying for. If you do that, there's hope for you.

    I believe in you, OP.
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    There is nothing to be lost by applying - if you do get rejected then at least you'll know rather than always be wondering. However please do remember that Oxbridge is not the be-all-and-end-all - there are plenty of other excellent universities!
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    If your other school was severely under performing you would be flagged up in the admissions system and given an interview automatically, as long as your GCSEs were outstanding compared to the performance of an average candidate at your school.
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    (Original post by xhorseloverx)
    If your other school was severely under performing you would be flagged up in the admissions system and given an interview automatically, as long as your GCSEs were outstanding compared to the performance of an average candidate at your school.
    As I say, it wasn't a terrible school. It was good for a comprehensive, about 70% of people got 5 Cs including English and Maths and 44% 5Cs in 'heavy' subjects.

    But at my current school, 70%+ of all grades at A-level are A*/A and it's even higher for the subjects I'm doing.

    I doubt I'd be given an automatic interview on those grounds, but thanks for the knowledge, I'm sure it'll help someone else reading the thread
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    (Original post by patience1)
    OP, just to give my thoughts here, I'd say definitely go on ahead and apply to Oxbridge, whichever one you're leaning more so towards. You don't want to be thinking 'what if' years down the line. You have five options on our UCAS form anyway, letting yourself choose Oxbridge as one choice leaves you with four potential other universities to consider, so why on earth not apply where you want to.

    I'd have to agree with the other TSR'ians posting that GCSE's do matter, but if you show an upwards curve and absolutely smash your A-Levels, they wouldn't disregard your results. Plus, as you put it, you went to a secondary school which wasn't as good as where you are now, so I'm sure they'll look at that contextually.

    If it's of any consolation, I'm sat here having initially failed my first AS year, having come out with two U's. So, I changed some of my subjects in a retake year, got ABBB last year (which isn't the best, truth be told) and yet, I still have an offer from Oxford to read Theology and Religion! Shocking, I know.

    Although, to be fair, coming from an awful area and going to an abysmal school definitely helped my chances. Point being here, I was considering not applying, and had I allowed everyone else's negativity cloud my own judgement, I wouldn't be holding my offer today. Anything is possible. However, you do need to work hard at achieving the grades necessary and show an undying passion for the course you're applying for. If you do that, there's hope for you.

    I believe in you, OP.
    Thanks for the kind words, I appreciate the motivation and well done on the offer! Hope it works for you <3
 
 
 
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