Should I apply to Oxford or Cambridge for Economics? Watch

_Poseidon_
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Hey guys,

I'm currently in a bit of a weird place. I love Economics and I'm currently going into Year 13. I have 10 A*, 1 A and 1 B in my GCSEs and after finishing my AS I got all As and an A* in A level math (did the course in 1 year). I do math, further math, econ, psychology, and an EPQ for A level. I'm predicted all A*s as well.

My main dilemma is which uni do I apply to for Economics and which will yield me a greater chance of getting in? I've been gravitating towards Oxford as my AS UMS haven't been stellar (192 in C12, 78 in M1, 188 in C34, 83 in M2 and 100 in Econ). I know that the average UMS for a Cambridge Econ student is around 97 so I'm almost certain I wouldn't stand a chance. However, a lot of my family and family friends who have children in Cambridge say that I should apply to Cambridge instead of Oxford as I'll have almost zero chance of getting into Oxford for E&M as it is so competitive.

I did a TSA diagnostic without any prior revision and got a 70.9, but I'm just not sure where to stand on this. I love Oxford and Cambridge equally, but I'm just not sure where I should apply.

Any advice is greatly appreciated,

Thank you!
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black1blade
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Cambridge's care about UMS is exagerated especially now that most people don't have ums (I had 92 ums avg for maths and got in for phys nst). Also the only thing dragging you down is the mechanics modules which aren't relevant to economics really- are you taking some stats modules with further maths? You have v high gcses so tbh you have a very good chance for either- just apply to whichever course you prefer from oxford or cambridge .
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Deggs_14
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I think when it comes to this sort of thing, the more you talk to people, the more you get different opinions and the more ambivalent you’ll feel. I’ve found this with writing my personal statement, by showing it to my mum, my dad, my neighbour etc it’s made me even more confused and stressed annoyingly.

I’m personally applying to Cambridge for geography as I don’t think I stand a chance with Oxford as I don’t really do many extra curricular things, and Cambridge place a lot more emphasis on academics and look at applications holistically. Even then, there isn’t really any concrete evidence, if you’re a very strong candidate then you’d get into Oxford or Cambridge. If you think you’re more rounded, then maybe Oxford is for you.

In my opinion, you should apply to the one with the course that you prefer. Perhaps there are certain modules or options in the second or third year that interest you more at one than the other. If one likes people who have maths and further maths and you don’t have that, then apply to the other. But there comes a certain point where you just need to give it a go and see what happens. You don’t have much to lose and a lot to gain, so just give it a go and see what happens. That’s what I’m doing with my Cambridge application.

Best wishes
Last edited by Deggs_14; 1 month ago
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_Poseidon_
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(Original post by Deggs_14)
I think when it comes to this sort of thing, the more you talk to people, the more you get different opinions and the more ambivalent you’ll feel. I’ve found this with writing my personal statement, by showing it to my mum, my dad, my neighbour etc it’s made me even more confused and stressed annoyingly.

I’m personally applying to Cambridge for geography as I don’t think I stand a chance with Oxford as I don’t really do many extra curricular things, and Cambridge place a lot more emphasis on academics and look at applications holistically. Even then, there isn’t really any concrete evidence, if you’re a very strong candidate then you’d get into Oxford or Cambridge.

In my opinion, you should apply to the one with the course that you prefer. If one likes people who have maths and further maths and you don’t have that, then apply to the other. But there comes a certain point where you just need to give it a go and see what happens. You don’t have much to loose and a lot to gain, so just give it a go and see what happens. That’s what I’m doing with my Cambridge application.

Best wishes
Thank you for the advice! I agree with you completely, everyone has different opinions and I'm trying to not let it cloud my judgment too much. Best of luck on applying to Cambridge!
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black1blade
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(Original post by _Poseidon_)
So for Further Maths next year we do S1, S2, S3 as well as FP1, FP2, FP3, so we do a lot of stats. I always hated Physics and so my Mechanics really let me down. I'm just worried I may be auto-rejected from Cambridge due to my AS results
You literally got the top possible grade in everything and your c1-4 (the actually relevant modules to econ) avg is 95 so you'll 100% get an interview at cambridge, oxford would be dependant on admissions test performance I think.
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_Poseidon_
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(Original post by black1blade)
Cambridge's care about UMS is exagerated especially now that most people don't have ums (I had 92 ums avg for maths and got in for phys nst). Also the only thing dragging you down is the mechanics modules which aren't relevant to economics really- are you taking some stats modules with further maths? You have v high gcses so tbh you have a very good chance for either- just apply to whichever course you prefer from oxford or cambridge .
So for Further Maths next year we do S1, S2, S3 as well as FP1, FP2, FP3, so we do a lot of stats. I always hated Physics and so my Mechanics really let me down. I'm just worried I may be auto-rejected from Cambridge due to my AS results
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Deggs_14
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Sorry my post is really waffle-y 😂 (and pancakey)
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Deggs_14
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(Original post by _Poseidon_)
Thank you for the advice! I agree with you completely, everyone has different opinions and I'm trying to not let it cloud my judgment too much. Best of luck on applying to Cambridge!
Thank you, and best of luck to you as well! 🍀
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WS31
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The difference in competitiveness between the Oxford and Cambridge courses is almost certainly negligible. Percentage accepted isn't always a good indicator of competitiveness for various reasons, e.g. weaker candidates may apply to Oxford over Cambridge as it has lower grade requirements. Also, claims about differences in what the unis prefer are usually more myth than reality. At both Oxford and Cambridge, for courses like economics at least, it is individual tutors at colleges who choose who to make offers to, with little direction from the central department. Therefore, it's unlikely there's serious trends in one preferring GCSE's or extracurriculars or something.
More important are the differences between the courses. E&M first year is only a third economics and two thirds management, and second and third year require you to take a certain number of management papers. So the courses are very different. If you're only interested in economics, Cambridge will be better. If you're interested in management as well, Oxford will be better.
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Oxford Mum
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(Original post by _Poseidon_)
Hey guys,

I'm currently in a bit of a weird place. I love Economics and I'm currently going into Year 13. I have 10 A*, 1 A and 1 B in my GCSEs and after finishing my AS I got all As and an A* in A level math (did the course in 1 year). I do math, further math, econ, psychology, and an EPQ for A level. I'm predicted all A*s as well.

My main dilemma is which uni do I apply to for Economics and which will yield me a greater chance of getting in? I've been gravitating towards Oxford as my AS UMS haven't been stellar (192 in C12, 78 in M1, 188 in C34, 83 in M2 and 100 in Econ). I know that the average UMS for a Cambridge Econ student is around 97 so I'm almost certain I wouldn't stand a chance. However, a lot of my family and family friends who have children in Cambridge say that I should apply to Cambridge instead of Oxford as I'll have almost zero chance of getting into Oxford for E&M as it is so competitive.

I did a TSA diagnostic without any prior revision and got a 70.9, but I'm just not sure where to stand on this. I love Oxford and Cambridge equally, but I'm just not sure where I should apply.

Any advice is greatly appreciated,

Thank you!
i know someone who is at Cambridge studying Economics, and it is quite mathsy. Do your interests lie in Maths or Management (for E&M at Oxford?) There are lots of people hoping to get into investment banking, for instance at Cambridge (don't know any Oxonian economists).
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_Poseidon_
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(Original post by Oxford Mum)
i know someone who is at Cambridge studying Economics, and it is quite mathsy. Do your interests lie in Maths or Management (for E&M at Oxford?) There are lots of people hoping to get into investment banking, for instance at Cambridge (don't know any Oxonian economists).
I do like maths quite a bit, but I feel as though I'm equally excited about the management modules in E&M at Oxford. I've taken a look at the course structure and it seems quite appealing to me. I think I'd be just as happy going to Cambridge as I would going to Oxford since I do have wide ranging interests in the field of Economics, including management like financial management. I think I'll most likely apply to Oxford as I find their course more interesting and quite frankly I feel more confident with excelling on the TSA as opposed to Cambridge's admissions test that looked like another language to me. I'm just extremely confused about which college to apply to. Could you provide me with some advice please?

I'd ideally like to go to a college with olden architecture and preferably a beautiful library (I have a soft spot for grand/beautiful libraries). I'd like to think I'm quite warm and friendly myself, so that would be something I'm definitely looking for as well in a college. I've done a bit of research and Christ Church, New, Worcester, Merton, Magdalen to name a few seem appealing. Could you please provide me with any advice based on your book and children's experience at Oxford?
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