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Cambridge or Leeds for Mechanical Engineering. (Need urgent help) Watch

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    I am having trouble deciding between the two, I have the predicted grades required for both of them and now I find it hard to choose one and deciding whether or not I should I even bother applying to Cambridge.

    I feel that Cambridge offers a beautiful campus with some good teaching, prospects and the whole pride and status that goes with studying at the university. But I don't feel like I would fit in an environment like that. Most students I met there were nice enough but a bit off for me to relate to. They seemed to have an air of arrogance about them and a lot of them were simply just awkward people.

    Leeds on the other hand, whilst it's not a pretty or particularly safe place to be is currently the best university in the UK for mechanical engineering, even ahead of Imperial (Cambridge doesn't do mechanical engineering degrees, just "engineering" where you specialise later on during study).I know that Leeds is famous for its social life and I am certain to get along with people better there than Cambridge.

    At my old school, everyone was heavily focused on their studies and it really put me in a poor frame of mind, I found it difficult to live in that environment and now I do my a levels at a much more relaxed and sociable school I feel like I am working better. Is it possible that I will do better at Leeds than Cambridge, would a good degree from Leeds be better than a worse one from Cambridge?

    Smaller points:
    - Nicer accommodation at Leeds
    - Leeds records its lectures
    - Engineering department at Leeds is nicer
    - Cambridge offers one to one tutoring
    - Probably happier at Leeds
    - Potential regret if I don't go to Cambridge



    TL;DR
    Both unis really good.
    Happier/More fun at Leeds
    Want Cambridge status/make people proud
    Cambridge could give better degree/future jobs
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    (Original post by curtwire)
    I am having trouble deciding between the two, I have the predicted grades required for both of them and now I find it hard to choose one and deciding whether or not I should I even bother applying to Cambridge.

    I feel that Cambridge offers a beautiful campus with some good teaching, prospects and the whole pride and status that goes with studying at the university. But I don't feel like I would fit in an environment like that. Most students I met there were nice enough but a bit off for me to relate to. They seemed to have an air of arrogance about them and a lot of them were simply just awkward people.

    Leeds on the other hand, whilst it's not a pretty or particularly safe place to be is currently the best university in the UK for mechanical engineering, even ahead of Imperial (Cambridge doesn't do mechanical engineering degrees, just "engineering" where you specialise later on during study).I know that Leeds is famous for its social life and I am certain to get along with people better there than Cambridge.

    At my old school, everyone was heavily focused on their studies and it really put me in a poor frame of mind, I found it difficult to live in that environment and now I do my a levels at a much more relaxed and sociable school I feel like I am working better. Is it possible that I will do better at Leeds than Cambridge, would a good degree from Leeds be better than a worse one from Cambridge?

    Smaller points:
    - Nicer accommodation at Leeds
    - Leeds records its lectures
    - Engineering department at Leeds is nicer
    - Cambridge offers one to one tutoring
    - Probably happier at Leeds
    - Potential regret if I don't go to Cambridge



    TL;DR
    Both unis really good.
    Happier/More fun at Leeds
    Want Cambridge status/make people proud
    Cambridge could give better degree/future jobs
    Why do you have to choose one of them now? Are you applying for universities this year for 2018 entry?
    If so, you can apply to 5 unis on UCAS. Why don't you apply to both?
    Sorry, but I don't quite understand why you need to decide which 'urgently' at this timing.
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    (Original post by curtwire)
    I am having trouble deciding between the two, I have the predicted grades required for both of them and now I find it hard to choose one and deciding whether or not I should I even bother applying to Cambridge.
    Apply to Oxford then - we know which end of the punt is more stable

    Frankly, you won't have a problem unless you get an offer from Cambridge, which isn't easy to get. Unless you have a very clear view of your future career that ties-in with one particular course, I'd go for Oxbridge. As above, apply to both (and others!).
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    (Original post by curtwire)
    I am having trouble deciding between the two, I have the predicted grades required for both of them and now I find it hard to choose one and deciding whether or not I should I even bother applying to Cambridge.

    I feel that Cambridge offers a beautiful campus with some good teaching, prospects and the whole pride and status that goes with studying at the university. But I don't feel like I would fit in an environment like that. Most students I met there were nice enough but a bit off for me to relate to. They seemed to have an air of arrogance about them and a lot of them were simply just awkward people.

    Leeds on the other hand, whilst it's not a pretty or particularly safe place to be is currently the best university in the UK for mechanical engineering, even ahead of Imperial (Cambridge doesn't do mechanical engineering degrees, just "engineering" where you specialise later on during study).I know that Leeds is famous for its social life and I am certain to get along with people better there than Cambridge.

    At my old school, everyone was heavily focused on their studies and it really put me in a poor frame of mind, I found it difficult to live in that environment and now I do my a levels at a much more relaxed and sociable school I feel like I am working better. Is it possible that I will do better at Leeds than Cambridge, would a good degree from Leeds be better than a worse one from Cambridge?

    Smaller points:
    - Nicer accommodation at Leeds
    - Leeds records its lectures
    - Engineering department at Leeds is nicer
    - Cambridge offers one to one tutoring
    - Probably happier at Leeds
    - Potential regret if I don't go to Cambridge



    TL;DR
    Both unis really good.
    Happier/More fun at Leeds
    Want Cambridge status/make people proud
    Cambridge could give better degree/future jobs
    You have 5 choices, if you want Cambridge to be an option apply there before 15th October, then add your 4 other choices later, before 15th January after doing more research.

    Your challenge will be to get the offers that then require your final selection.

    What other universities are on your shortlist?

    Get the offers, then decide.

    BTW, Cambridge records its Engineering lectures too. Viewable alongside the lecture notes via their Raven intranet login.

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    (Original post by vincrows)
    Why do you have to choose one of them now? Are you applying for universities this year for 2018 entry?
    If so, you can apply to 5 unis on UCAS. Why don't you apply to both?
    Sorry, but I don't quite understand why you need to decide which 'urgently' at this timing.
    I need to submit my UCAS for the 25th of September for my school if I want to go to Cambridge. And the application process for Cambridge is long and drawn out. Should I really be focusing on how I would pass their interviews and the STEP exam if I am unsure if I want to go yet? And I would really like to hear where you think I should go.
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    (Original post by Doonesbury)
    You have 5 choices, if you want Cambridge to be an option apply there before 15th October, then add your 4 other choices later, before 15th January after doing more research.

    Your challenge will be to get the offers that then require your final selection.

    What other universities are on your shortlist?

    Get the offers, then decide.

    BTW, Cambridge records its Engineering lectures too. Viewable alongside the lecture notes via their Raven intranet login.

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    If I could decide now then I may not need to go through the hassle of a Cambridge engineering application. I'd rather know your opinion on which is better.
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    (Original post by curtwire)
    I need to submit my UCAS for the 25th of September for my school if I want to go to Cambridge. And the application process for Cambridge is long and drawn out. Should I really be focusing on how I would pass their interviews and the STEP exam if I am unsure if I want to go yet? And I would really like to hear where you think I should go.
    Look, as others have also told you, it's just one of 5 choices on ucas. If you're interested in Cambridge, why don't you apply it anyway?
    You can worry about which uni to go AFTER you got some offers.

    Oh, btw it's only one or two collages at Cambridge that requires STEP.

    Please don't ask me (or others) which uni you should go. It's a decision you need to make yourself...... Which uni is better entirely depends on what you expect from their courses.
    If the process of applying to Cambridge is anbigger negative to you than possible positives of studying there, then don't apply..... You weigh up,the two and you decide.
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    (Original post by RogerOxon)
    Apply to Oxford then - we know which end of the punt is more stable

    Frankly, you won't have a problem unless you get an offer from Cambridge, which isn't easy to get. Unless you have a very clear view of your future career that ties-in with one particular course, I'd go for Oxbridge. As above, apply to both (and others!).
    You can't apply to both Oxford and Cambridge. Cambridge and Leeds are better than Oxford for engineering and Oxford still has all the same issues I have with Cambridge. They are two sides of the same coin.
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    (Original post by curtwire)
    You can't apply to both Oxford and Cambridge. Cambridge and Leeds are better than Oxford for engineering and Oxford still has all the same issues I have with Cambridge. They are two sides of the same coin.
    He was joking about Oxford.......
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    (Original post by curtwire)
    I am having trouble deciding between the two, I have the predicted grades required for both of them and now I find it hard to choose one and deciding whether or not I should I even bother applying to Cambridge.

    I feel that Cambridge offers a beautiful campus with some good teaching, prospects and the whole pride and status that goes with studying at the university. But I don't feel like I would fit in an environment like that. Most students I met there were nice enough but a bit off for me to relate to. They seemed to have an air of arrogance about them and a lot of them were simply just awkward people.

    Leeds on the other hand, whilst it's not a pretty or particularly safe place to be is currently the best university in the UK for mechanical engineering, even ahead of Imperial (Cambridge doesn't do mechanical engineering degrees, just "engineering" where you specialise later on during study).I know that Leeds is famous for its social life and I am certain to get along with people better there than Cambridge.

    At my old school, everyone was heavily focused on their studies and it really put me in a poor frame of mind, I found it difficult to live in that environment and now I do my a levels at a much more relaxed and sociable school I feel like I am working better. Is it possible that I will do better at Leeds than Cambridge, would a good degree from Leeds be better than a worse one from Cambridge?

    Smaller points:
    - Nicer accommodation at Leeds
    - Leeds records its lectures
    - Engineering department at Leeds is nicer
    - Cambridge offers one to one tutoring
    - Probably happier at Leeds
    - Potential regret if I don't go to Cambridge



    TL;DR
    Both unis really good.
    Happier/More fun at Leeds
    Want Cambridge status/make people proud
    Cambridge could give better degree/future jobs
    As others have said, just apply to both. The Cambridge application process isn't that drawn out: you don't need to do STEP for engineering unless you want to, and it's not necessary to spend huge amounts of time preparing for interviews/admissions tests.

    I think your worries about not fitting in at Cambridge are unfounded. Most people here are pretty normal (not arrogant, ridiculously studious etc.), and I don't think our engineers are more awkward than anywhere else's. You are right that it would probably be a more high pressure environment than Leeds. You are the only person that knows how important that is to you.

    P.S. "whilst it's not a pretty or particularly safe place to be": where did you get that from?! The North isn't a post-apocalyptic wasteland!
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    (Original post by sweeneyrod)
    As others have said, just apply to both. The Cambridge application process isn't that drawn out: you don't need to do STEP for engineering unless you want to, and it's not necessary to spend huge amounts of time preparing for interviews/admissions tests.

    I think your worries about not fitting in at Cambridge are unfounded. Most people here are pretty normal (not arrogant, ridiculously studious etc.), and I don't think our engineers are more awkward than anywhere else's. You are right that it would probably be a more high pressure environment than Leeds. You are the only person that knows how important that is to you.

    P.S. "whilst it's not a pretty or particularly safe place to be": where did you get that from?! The North isn't a post-apocalyptic wasteland!
    I still don't think the people at Cambridge are my sort of people. I think I will just apply to both and see what happens.

    P.S. Yh leeds is pretty unsafe. My sisters house has bars on the windows, theirs and their neighbours have been broken into. Muggings are pretty common and someone got murdered near where one of her friends lives
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    (Original post by curtwire)
    I still don't think the people at Cambridge are my sort of people. I think I will just apply to both and see what happens.
    Have you visited on an Open Day? There's plenty of "your sort of people"* at Cambridge...

    What are your other choices?

    *There's plenty of every sort of people.

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    (Original post by curtwire)
    I still don't think the people at Cambridge are my sort of people. I think I will just apply to both and see what happens.
    Are you aware that 62% of Cambridge entrants are now from state funded schools.

    When we visited on the open day last year we found the students we met to be very pleasant, chatty and not in the least bit stuck-up. It was exactly the same for the interviews.

    Just as a matter of interest which Colleges did you visit?
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    (Original post by curtwire)
    P.S. Yh leeds is pretty unsafe. My sisters house has bars on the windows, theirs and their neighbours have been broken into. Muggings are pretty common and someone got murdered near where one of her friends lives
    Every large city has areas like this.
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    (Original post by Forecast)
    Every large city has areas like this.
    Cambridge doesn't. That was my point
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    (Original post by nutz99)
    Are you aware that 62% of Cambridge entrants are now from state funded schools.

    When we visited on the open day last year we found the students we met to be very pleasant, chatty and not in the least bit stuck-up. It was exactly the same for the interviews.

    Just as a matter of interest which Colleges did you visit?
    Theres more to a personality than being nice and chatty. I can be friendly with people like that. But I would never be as close. The people at Cambridge felt sheltered. Friendly but bland, do you get what I mean? I would be a square peg in a round hole. (And I did find quite a few were arrogant, I went to Emmanuel, Clare, King's, Downing, Corpus Christi)
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    (Original post by Doonesbury)
    Have you visited on an Open Day? There's plenty of "your sort of people"* at Cambridge...

    What are your other choices?

    *There's plenty of every sort of people.

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    I did visit on an open day. The people were nice, but that was it. They were just bland. My other choices are Leeds, Durham, Lancaster, Edinburgh. But I would retake if I didn't get into Leeds.
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    (Original post by curtwire)
    I still don't think the people at Cambridge are my sort of people. I think I will just apply to both and see what happens.
    Fair enough!

    (Original post by curtwire)
    P.S. Yh leeds is pretty unsafe. My sisters house has bars on the windows, theirs and their neighbours have been broken into. Muggings are pretty common and someone got murdered near where one of her friends lives
    Unsafe relative to what? I don't think it's any more dangerous than any other large city. In my 19 years living in Leeds, I've not been the victim of any crime. I know some people have been mugged, but I know just as many people in other cities who've experienced that.
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    (Original post by curtwire)
    I did visit on an open day. The people were nice, but that was it. They were just bland. My other choices are Leeds, Durham, Lancaster, Edinburgh. But I would retake if I didn't get into Leeds.
    Sorry to hear this, and tbh I'm surprised. Most of the Cambridge students I've met are anything but bland.

    I'd still recommend applying and then making the final choice if/when you actually get an offer. Your other 4 choices are good (I'd suggest Bristol or Bath instead of Lancaster) and as I said there's no rush to finalise those 4 remaing places.

    Also:
    (Original post by curtwire)
    Cambridge doesn't. That was my point
    Violent crime can and does happen in Cambridge. (Not like this is a plus, just a reality check.)

    https://www.thecompleteuniversitygui...ns-and-cities/
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    (Original post by curtwire)
    I did visit on an open day. The people were nice, but that was it. They were just bland. My other choices are Leeds, Durham, Lancaster, Edinburgh. But I would retake if I didn't get into Leeds.
    I think you've set your heart firmly on Leeds already.
    I don't agree with you at all about how people are like at Cambridge but that was how you felt and you seem to be so adamant.
    I also wonder which ranking you're taking about which put Leeds as the top uni for mechanical engineering. The only rankkng I could find that has Leeds on top was Guardian's and Leeds are much lower in other rankings that I could access online. Every ranking uses different methodology.....

    Go to Leeds. Perhaps that's the only uni you're genuinely interested.
 
 
 
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