Which college should I choose to study mathematics at Cambridge? Watch

Hermine Erdos
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I am currently working on my application to the University of Cambridge (I am a EU citizen from Germany) to study maths. My favourite college would definitely be Trinity, my second choice is Christ's College. According to the website of the Cambridge Maths Department, both colleges have average acceptance rates for maths students among all colleges. However, I would assume that the overall quality of applicants at Trinity is higher, so it is probably harder to get into Trinity than into Christ's College. What I am worried about is that - if I get an offer at all - I am at a high risk of getting pooled and thus getting into a "worse" college when applying to Trinity. So I am wondering whether I should apply to my first choice or apply to Christ's College directly.
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scoobyice8
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Your chances of getting into Cambridge is constant across all colleges due to the existence of the pooling system. Trinity probably gets more applicants than Christ’s (because it’s more famous) but it is also a larger college and can accommodate the increased number of applicants. Your chances of getting pooled are also reasonably consistent. If Trinity isn’t sure about you and decides to pool you then it’s likely Christ’s would behave the same.

Also, no colleges are better or worse than any other. At Cambridge, your college looks after your pastoral care but you are taught in lectures and supervisions centrally with people from other colleges. You will also have supervisions either in your own college or (depending on the modules you take) in other colleges. Your degree comes from the University of Cambridge not from a specific college. So all the colleges are equally ‘good’.

It also may interest you to know that Christ’s is actually ranked higher than Trinity on the Tompkins Table which shows what % of pupils come out with firsts.

You should chose your college because your gut tells you to or because you like the accommodation or whatever not because of an academic quality.
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Hermine Erdos
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(Original post by scoobyice8)
Your chances of getting into Cambridge is constant across all colleges due to the existence of the pooling system. Trinity probably gets more applicants than Christ’s (because it’s more famous) but it is also a larger college and can accommodate the increased number of applicants. Your chances of getting pooled are also reasonably consistent. If Trinity isn’t sure about you and decides to pool you then it’s likely Christ’s would behave the same.

Also, no colleges are better or worse than any other. At Cambridge, your college looks after your pastoral care but you are taught in lectures and supervisions centrally with people from other colleges. You will also have supervisions either in your own college or (depending on the modules you take) in other colleges. Your degree comes from the University of Cambridge not from a specific college. So all the colleges are equally ‘good’.

It also may interest you to know that Christ’s is actually ranked higher than Trinity on the Tompkins Table which shows what % of pupils come out with firsts.

You should chose your college because your gut tells you to or because you like the accommodation or whatever not because of an academic quality.
Hello scoobyice8,
thanks a lot for the advice! I am aware of the Tompkins Table and teaching system, but what is essential for me about Trinity - apart from resources, location, size,... - is that they accommodate most of the maths students (partly since it is also a large college) and that they have great professors in areas I am especially interested in. However, I am quite relieved that the college I am applying to apparently does not affect my application as much as I presumed.
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scoobyice8
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(Original post by Hermine Erdos)
Hello scoobyice8,
thanks a lot for the advice! I am aware of the Tompkins Table and teaching system, but what is essential for me about Trinity - apart from resources, location, size,... - is that they accommodate most of the maths students (partly since it is also a large college) and that they have great professors in areas I am especially interested in. However, I am quite relieved that the college I am applying to apparently does not affect my application as much as I presumed.
Hi there! Those are great reasons to pick a college but they don’t make Trinity the ‘best’ for maths. Only the best for you. Don’t get so bogged down in trying to play the impossible college game. If you want to go to Trinity, apply to Trinity.
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