Does anyone else think that Oxbridge is just not comparable to other unis?

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Appleorpear
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Although Imperial comes close as well as LSE for a select few subjects, Oxbridge just seems a tier above all of its competition. The whole process means that to get in you can't just get good academics generally and get in like you would at literally all other unis (besides certain courses like medicine), you actually have to be passionate and really strong at that subject specifically and not just a great student overall. When you look at less rigorous/prestigious courses, at pretty much all unis outside Oxbridge you can get in quite easily just by having good grades/predictions. Oxbridge ensures a standard across all its courses by giving ALL courses additional testing and interviews, meaning someone doing a non-STEM subject doesn't have far worse academics than someone doing Maths. Unlike unis like UCL where people get in on ABB and then another person needs A*A*A, most people getting in on the weaker courses exceed their "low" (relative to other courses) requirements anyway due to the tough admissions process.

Oxbridge is known worldwide. When I was about 8 all the unis I knew were Oxbridge, ones where family went and the local one on the way to school, and if you ask someone abroad then chances are they've heard of Oxbridge but probably not Durham (1 step below). They have an international reputation pretty much unrivalled besides by a select few American universities.
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username738914
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(Original post by Appleorpear)
Although Imperial comes close as well as LSE for a select few subjects, Oxbridge just seems a tier above all of its competition. The whole process means that to get in you can't just get good academics generally and get in like you would at literally all other unis (besides certain courses like medicine), you actually have to be passionate and really strong at that subject specifically and not just a great student overall. When you look at less rigorous/prestigious courses, at pretty much all unis outside Oxbridge you can get in quite easily just by having good grades/predictions. Oxbridge ensures a standard across all its courses by giving ALL courses additional testing and interviews, meaning someone doing a non-STEM subject doesn't have far worse academics than someone doing Maths. Unlike unis like UCL where people get in on ABB and then another person needs A*A*A, most people getting in on the weaker courses exceed their "low" (relative to other courses) requirements anyway due to the tough admissions process.

Oxbridge is known worldwide. When I was about 8 all the unis I knew were Oxbridge, ones where family went and the local one on the way to school, and if you ask someone abroad then chances are they've heard of Oxbridge but probably not Durham (1 step below). They have an international reputation pretty much unrivalled besides by a select few American universities.
It's true that Oxbridge has an additional interview "filter" vs universities (and specific courses at some universities) of a similar student make up but I don't think there's any significant difference between an A*A*AA student at Oxbridge or one at LSE or one doing a particularly difficult course elsewhere. Any one of them could manage quite well at Oxbridge though whether the tutorial system and short terms are a good fit for the non-Oxbridge student is something to take into account.

I think most of Oxbridge's reputation is hype mixed with age, tradition and an entrenched position in the minds of middle class britain.



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Trapz99
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In my view Oxbridge is not comparable, it's on another level. I don't actually go to Oxbridge but the reputation of the two universities is unparalleled.
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artful_lounger
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I think as an experience, it certainly has something quite unique to offer, and the tutorial format could well be a considerable strength in developing budding academics. Beyond that, in terms of course content or so, as above the calibre of an Oxbridge student vs one with similar grades at a similarly considered university (such as Imperial, LSE, etc) will be broadly similar.

However it is worth noting, a former lecturer of mine was an external examiner for the first year maths methods papers for engineers at Imperial and Cambridge - apparently Imperial's are fairly typical, while the Cambridge ones were fiendishly difficult in comparison. He did also teach at Oxford for a few years much earlier in his career, so I think he would have a reasonable balanced viewpoint on the matter

Make of that what you will! In the long run I don't think there is a great difference between them, unless you're studying an "arts" subject and intend to continue into academia, where the nature of the Oxbridge system may be slightly better preparation for the rigours of academia.
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EmMadGiddy
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I think academically, it's possible. But I didn't (and still wouldn't) consider Oxbridge in my Uni application. I think the stress and the pressure is much higher than other Unis and it sucks the fun out of the degree. I heard from a friend one of them has to close off the tower around exam time. It seems to me the only important thing in both of these Unis is achieving a good result. Don't get me wrong, this IS important. But it's not the only important thing. I would much rather choose a Uni that I would enjoy than a Uni that I would do well at. I've already been through a high school that had the attitude that grades were everything, and I wouldn't forgive it for how horrible it made high school for me, nevermind what it did to my sister.

I also have a (probably unfair) assumption that Oxbridge is full of very stuck up people. But thats a less fair reason.

I totally get why people want to go there though. My friend's applied to Cambridge and wants it more than anything.

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sally_1912
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Yeah their reputation will always be top of the top like it has been all this time. Tbh, (unless you don't care about social life or thrive under pressure), who would want to go through the stress and pressure of Oxbridge anyways? Uni is supposed to be a good experience too. But I guess we all nees those people who are so smart to take on the higher up jobs. E.g. most of the prime minister's went to Oxbridge. In America a lot of the presidents went to ivy league schools. It depends on you tbh. I however wouldn't even consider it. Not smart or dumb enough.
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username3973192
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(Original post by Appleorpear)
Although Imperial comes close as well as LSE for a select few subjects, Oxbridge just seems a tier above all of its competition. The whole process means that to get in you can't just get good academics generally and get in like you would at literally all other unis (besides certain courses like medicine), you actually have to be passionate and really strong at that subject specifically and not just a great student overall. When you look at less rigorous/prestigious courses, at pretty much all unis outside Oxbridge you can get in quite easily just by having good grades/predictions. Oxbridge ensures a standard across all its courses by giving ALL courses additional testing and interviews, meaning someone doing a non-STEM subject doesn't have far worse academics than someone doing Maths. Unlike unis like UCL where people get in on ABB and then another person needs A*A*A, most people getting in on the weaker courses exceed their "low" (relative to other courses) requirements anyway due to the tough admissions process.

Oxbridge is known worldwide. When I was about 8 all the unis I knew were Oxbridge, ones where family went and the local one on the way to school, and if you ask someone abroad then chances are they've heard of Oxbridge but probably not Durham (1 step below). They have an international reputation pretty much unrivalled besides by a select few American universities.
Oxbridge is a load of crap imo
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username2950448
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I’m biased, but yes.

Nothing else in Europe comes close.
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