Oxford or Cambridge for engineering Watch

Anonymous_guy011
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Was wondering which uni would be easier to get into for engineering. Thanks

I do maths, Further maths and physics for A level.
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RhynieChert
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by the numbers in 2018 Oxford took 18% of engineering applicants, Cambridge 15% so not a significant difference for either. really this will vary person to person: are you better at the ENGAA (Cambridge) or the PAT (Oxford)? try some past papers to see which you prefer. Cambridge also interview a higher percentage than Oxford so if you think you're stronger at interviews than tests you may want to consider that.

however, really you should be choosing the uni with the course you prefer, as both are similarly competitive so make sure you are applying for something that is right for you
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mnot
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(Original post by Anonymous_guy011)
Was wondering which uni would be easier to get into for engineering. Thanks

I do maths, Further maths and physics for A level.
I dont think either one would be easier, the top performing applicants will get in regardless.

Both are pretty odd course tbh, as im sure your aware the main course is more of a general engineering degree (there are specific degree options such as chem-eng) but they don't offer a standard aerospace, mechanical, civil, electronic engineering degrees. And they don't have many specialist modules. Ive never been a fan of there undergrad engineering programs but Oxbridge has a stellar rep regardless.

I would recommend looking at Imperial as well (quite often seen as the no1 European engineering school, there are also a couple very good German ones & ETH Zurich)

Oxbridge does have some of the highest standard research groups in engineering as well tho.
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RhynieChert
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[QUOTE=mnot;85202634]"I dont think either one would be easier, the top performing applicants will get in regardless.

Both are pretty odd course tbh, as im sure your aware the main course is more of a general engineering degree (there are specific degree options such as chem-eng) but they don't offer a standard aerospace, mechanical, civil, electronic engineering degrees. And they don't have many specialist modules. Ive never been a fan of there undergrad engineering programs but Oxbridge has a stellar rep regardless".[QUOTE=mnot;85202635]

i don't know about oxford but for cambridge this is a bit misleading as from third year you can fully specialise in any of these areas:
Aerospace and Aerothermal Engineering
Bioengineering
Civil, Structural and Environmental Engineering
Electrical and Electronic Engineering
Electrical and Information Sciences
Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
Information and Computer Engineering
Instrumentation and Control
Mechanical Engineering

you're right that the course should be the main factor in choosing the uni, so cambridge is a good choice especially if you arent yet sure exactly which type of engineering you're interested in but want the ability to specialise later

(tsr has glitched and I can't seem to quote properly sorry)
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User61966
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Have you visited both Universities? My son is also looking at Engineering so we visited both. While the courses are very similar, they feel very different. The intake at Cambridge is almost 3 times as large as Oxford and the facilities much better. However Cambridge entry does appear more competitive with some colleges having additional requirements over and above the A*A*A (e.g. STEP), which Oxford doesn’t have.
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Muttley79
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(Original post by Anonymous_guy011)
Was wondering which uni would be easier to get into for engineering. Thanks

I do maths, Further maths and physics for A level.
Why are you considering either of them for Engineering? Many people consider that these days there are better unis on offer, particularly ones which offer a year in industry. All that is important is an accredited degree and getting decent hands-on experience.
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mnot
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(Original post by RhynieChert)
(Original post by mnot)
"I dont think either one would be easier, the top performing applicants will get in regardless.

Both are pretty odd course tbh, as im sure your aware the main course is more of a general engineering degree (there are specific degree options such as chem-eng) but they don't offer a standard aerospace, mechanical, civil, electronic engineering degrees. And they don't have many specialist modules. Ive never been a fan of there undergrad engineering programs but Oxbridge has a stellar rep regardless".
(Original post by mnot)

i don't know about oxford but for cambridge this is a bit misleading as from third year you can fully specialise in any of these areas:
Aerospace and Aerothermal Engineering
Bioengineering
Civil, Structural and Environmental Engineering
Electrical and Electronic Engineering
Electrical and Information Sciences
Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
Information and Computer Engineering
Instrumentation and Control
Mechanical Engineering

you're right that the course should be the main factor in choosing the uni, so cambridge is a good choice especially if you arent yet sure exactly which type of engineering you're interested in but want the ability to specialise later

(tsr has glitched and I can't seem to quote properly sorry)
What i meant by specialise was more quite often in engineering you can spend 3 years dong a mechanical course or aerospace course then taken very specialist modules in 3rd/4th year: such as Internal combustion engine, aerospace propulsion systems, turbine engineering, hydrogen technologies etc... loads & loads more

Whereas the specialisms as Oxbridge are just what would normally be considered the degree type.

For example: 'instrumentation & control' is a fairly standard discipline every mechanical engineering student does in 2nd year, whereas they don't teach it in Oxbridge till its a 'speciality' option further down the road.
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mnot
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(Original post by User61966)
Have you visited both Universities? My son is also looking at Engineering so we visited both. While the courses are very similar, they feel very different. The intake at Cambridge is almost 3 times as large as Oxford and the facilities much better. However Cambridge entry does appear more competitive with some colleges having additional requirements over and above the A*A*A (e.g. STEP), which Oxford doesn’t have.
Oxford has PAT (which you also have to do if you apply to Imperial, so 2 birds 1 stone) instead of STEP, both require A*A*A. I doubt there is any noticeable difference in competitiveness.
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RhynieChert
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(Original post by mnot)
What i meant by specialise was more quite often in engineering you can spend 3 years dong a mechanical course or aerospace course then taken very specialist modules in 3rd/4th year: such as Internal combustion engine, aerospace propulsion systems, turbine engineering, hydrogen technologies etc... loads & loads more

Whereas the specialisms as Oxbridge are just what would normally be considered the degree type.

For example: 'instrumentation & control' is a fairly standard discipline every mechanical engineering student does in 2nd year, whereas they don't teach it in Oxbridge till its a 'speciality' option further down the road.
yeah that's fair I definitely agree if you're already sure what you want to specialise in there are better courses you can do
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artful_lounger
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(Original post by mnot)
What i meant by specialise was more quite often in engineering you can spend 3 years dong a mechanical course or aerospace course then taken very specialist modules in 3rd/4th year: such as Internal combustion engine, aerospace propulsion systems, turbine engineering, hydrogen technologies etc... loads & loads more

Whereas the specialisms as Oxbridge are just what would normally be considered the degree type.

For example: 'instrumentation & control' is a fairly standard discipline every mechanical engineering student does in 2nd year, whereas they don't teach it in Oxbridge till its a 'speciality' option further down the road.
http://teaching.eng.cam.ac.uk/conten...line-resources

Part IB (2nd year) engineering students do indeed to control/systems engineering in second year. They can just specialise in that area further, if they wish.

(Original post by Anonymous_guy011)
Was wondering which uni would be easier to get into for engineering. Thanks

I do maths, Further maths and physics for A level.
Neither is necessarily easier, although depending on other factors you may be more likely to get interviewed or get an offer from one or the other. Oxford puts more weight on GCSEs, and they take the PAT (although as I understand the PAT is more important than GCSEs for getting shortlisted for interview). Cambridge puts less emphasis on GCSEs, and applicants take the ENGAA. Cambridge interviews a slightly higher proportion of students initially, but as a result there is more "competition" in the post-interview deselection phase.

Look at the PAT and ENGAA example/past papers and see which you do better on. Also bear in mind at Cambridge the standard offer is A*A*A, while at Oxford it is A*AA (but equally, Oxford interviews fewer applicants initially, so if you have weak GCSEs and aren't confident you can offset that by doing very well in the PAT, the risk of not getting interviewed at all might suggest Cambridge a better option).

Do also look at the differences between the courses, although I think they're fairly similar overall. Cambridge requires students get 6 weeks of industrial experience by June of their third year (which presumably they will help place students into). I don't know if Oxford has a similar requirement.
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RhynieChert
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(Original post by artful_lounger)
Neither is necessarily easier, although depending on other factors you may be more likely to get interviewed or get an offer from one or the other. Oxford puts more weight on GCSEs, and they take the PAT (although as I understand the PAT is more important than GCSEs for getting shortlisted for interview). Cambridge puts less emphasis on GCSEs, and applicants take the ENGAA. Cambridge interviews a slightly higher proportion of students initially, but as a result there is more "competition" in the post-interview deselection phase.

Look at the PAT and ENGAA example/past papers and see which you do better on. Also bear in mind at Cambridge the standard offer is A*A*A, while at Oxford it is A*AA (but equally, Oxford interviews fewer applicants initially, so if you have weak GCSEs and aren't confident you can offset that by doing very well in the PAT, the risk of not getting interviewed at all might suggest Cambridge a better option).

Do also look at the differences between the courses, although I think they're fairly similar overall. Cambridge requires students get 6 weeks of industrial experience by June of their third year (which presumably they will help place students into). I don't know if Oxford has a similar requirement.
the standard offer at Oxford has gone up to A*A*A according to their website
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Anonymous_guy011
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(Original post by Muttley79)
Why are you considering either of them for Engineering? Many people consider that these days there are better unis on offer, particularly ones which offer a year in industry. All that is important is an accredited degree and getting decent hands-on experience.
Yes I agree and that’s why I’m also applying to Imperial Mechanical Engineering with a Year in industry. But I do believe Oxbridge make you do a 6 months placement in industry
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artful_lounger
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(Original post by RhynieChert)
the standard offer at Oxford has gone up to A*A*A according to their website
Oh really? Well I guess then as far as achieving offers there is no difference between the two now then. OP should focus on how they select applicants for invitation to interview then and choose the one they're most likely to get interviewed at I guess in that case.
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Anonymous_guy011
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(Original post by User61966)
Have you visited both Universities? My son is also looking at Engineering so we visited both. While the courses are very similar, they feel very different. The intake at Cambridge is almost 3 times as large as Oxford and the facilities much better. However Cambridge entry does appear more competitive with some colleges having additional requirements over and above the A*A*A (e.g. STEP), which Oxford doesn’t have.
Yes I visited both, liked oxford more due to its compactness however Cambridge is closer to London so idk
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Anonymous_guy011
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(Original post by mnot)
Oxford has PAT (which you also have to do if you apply to Imperial, so 2 birds 1 stone) instead of STEP, both require A*A*A. I doubt there is any noticeable difference in competitiveness.
The thing is, Imperial only require PAT for aerospace and although I am considering doing aerospace, I’m leaning more towards mechanical as I don’t want to sit the PAT and the ENGAA ( if I decide to choose cam over ox)
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mnot
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(Original post by Anonymous_guy011)
Yes I agree and that’s why I’m also applying to Imperial Mechanical Engineering with a Year in industry. But I do believe Oxbridge make you do a 6 months placement in industry
This must of changed then, I remember back in the day (summer 2013), asking about industry placements at the Oxford open day, and they basically said you can do standard 3 month summer internships, the year-in-industry is not offered.

Never applied to Oxbridge, but did placement year in engineering. I really recommend it, I learnt more in those 12 months about 'real engineering' then I have on 4 years of taught Uni (that said, Uni is still important). The year-in-industry also gave me a grad offer, and I believe significantly helped me when securing a PhD offer.

Only thing is id say, be careful to find a year-in-industry that you really want, and not one where you'll do 2 tasks every week and repeat (find something with some innovation and fast paced if possible).
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Anonymous_guy011
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My main deciding factor are the entrance exams as the courses are pretty similar and I like both places. Which is generally considered harder? The PAT or ENGAA. Personally, when I looked at the PAT, it did look harder although I know you can use a calculator in the exam.
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mnot
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(Original post by Anonymous_guy011)
The thing is, Imperial only require PAT for aerospace and although I am considering doing aerospace, I’m leaning more towards mechanical as I don’t want to sit the PAT and the ENGAA ( if I decide to choose cam over ox)
Fair enough, mechanical is a good degree (the one i went with) and in mechanical you'll still study fluid mechanics, probably have CFD (computational fluid dynamics) as an option as well. Just a wider platform in mechanical (and if you do mechanical, you can always just drop to BEng + add a specialist MSc later, if you change your mind in a couple years)
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Anonymous_guy011
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(Original post by mnot)
This must of changed then, I remember back in the day (summer 2013), asking about industry placements at the Oxford open day, and they basically said you can do standard 3 month summer internships, the year-in-industry is not offered.

Never applied to Oxbridge, but did placement year in engineering. I really recommend it, I learnt more in those 12 months about 'real engineering' then I have on 4 years of taught Uni (that said, Uni is still important). The year-in-industry also gave me a grad offer, and I believe significantly helped me when securing a PhD offer.

Only thing is id say, be careful to find a year-in-industry that you really want, and not one where you'll do 2 tasks every week and repeat (find something with some innovation and fast paced if possible).
Just wondering what uni did you do your undergrad at?
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mnot
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(Original post by Anonymous_guy011)
Just wondering what uni did you do your undergrad at?
nottingham
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