What ECs does a strong Oxbridge applicant need (STEM)? Watch

lostpenny
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I am in year 12 now, and I am terrified that I am that one kid who has the grades and gets thrown straight into the rejection pile for lack of relevant extra-curriculars.

I see all these people who have won this and that and met the king of Norway or something for (insert impressive accomplishment) and I have done NONE of this things. The most vaguely impressive thing I did ever was win some obscure national physics/art crossover competition.

I do, however, do a lot of non-competitive things: I do problem solving on Physics, taught myself Python, use KhanAcademy, am doing Engineering Education Scheme (but my team is really behind so lol no hope there unless a miracle happens), I read books e.g. Smashing Physics by Jon Butterworth, and some stuff by Feynman. I do these because competitions scare me, I find it more fun to just do whatever interests me. I also applied to a few courses for the summer and work experience stuff, but it's still prospective. It's stressing me out how much others have already achieved, and how - dear God- they're the people I have to be like or better than to be accepted into my dream Uni.

What should I do? I have a few competitions I could enter, is it necessary though?

(clarification: I want to study either Engineering or Physical NatSci)
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Arctic Kitten
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Tbh all you EC seem more than enough for me. Just do A LOT of extra reading and get a good grade in your admission test.

Edit: You can actually just build a robot/physics model/etc, show it to your teacher, and develop it (that what my compsci friends at Imperial did). The only thing that matters is the experience anyway.
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Snoozinghamster
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(Original post by lostpenny)
I am in year 12 now, and I am terrified that I am that one kid who has the grades and gets thrown straight into the rejection pile for lack of relevant extra-curriculars.

I see all these people who have won this and that and met the king of Norway or something for (insert impressive accomplishment) and I have done NONE of this things. The most vaguely impressive thing I did ever was win some obscure national physics/art crossover competition.

I do, however, do a lot of non-competitive things: I do problem solving on Physics, taught myself Python, use KhanAcademy, am doing Engineering Education Scheme (but my team is really behind so lol no hope there unless a miracle happens), I read books e.g. Smashing Physics by Jon Butterworth, and some stuff by Feynman. I do these because competitions scare me, I find it more fun to just do whatever interests me. I also applied to a few courses for the summer and work experience stuff, but it's still prospective. It's stressing me out how much others have already achieved, and how - dear God- they're the people I have to be like or better than to be accepted into my dream Uni.

What should I do? I have a few competitions I could enter, is it necessary though?

(clarification: I want to study either Engineering or Physical NatSci)
It’s fine to not have loads of extra stuff, I had EES with a similar level of success to you by the sound of things, mentioned two books in my personal statement and a summer course but that was about it. There was a couple of qualifications but no competitions so don’t worry.
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Headboard
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The personal statement is a place where you could write about competitions you have done and stuff like that but it really isn't required. The personal statement is to say why you have a passion for the subject and that could be just as easily shown through you reading into the subject than the competition. Its's your predicted grades,, admissions tests, and interviews that they will use to determine whether you are academically capable.
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