Rejected From Cambridge - Any Hope / Advice / Support? Watch

helpme3456
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I've just recieved my rejection letter from Cambridge university (for Comp Sci) and it hurts really badly to say the least. It came as such a shock to me after everything I had done. For context I am predicted 4 A*s at A level, have achieved a grade 7 (out of 9) in CTMUA and have a detailed personal statement / teacher reference about everything which I have done (involving a vast amount of complex programming projects which I have done in my free time). The interview also went decently however I made some errors when I was put on the spot.

Right now I am grieving about this and what makes it worse is that I really liked Cambridge's approach to computer science specifically (i.e. focus on maths). Everyone I knew thought I was one of the most likely people to get an offer but alas I have achieved nothing.

What should I do now? Should I consider reapplying later, should I ask for feedback, etc.

I have offers from other Uni's (i.e. Warwick) also, however worry that Warwick may not be as focused on the mathematical side of computer science as Cambridge.

Any advice / support is appreciated.
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winter151001
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I know it must be hard. I’m currently waiting for offers/rejections and it’s so disheartening when it’s your favourite uni, and you’ve built it up as your dream. But I’d say that by the sounds of things you’re a very diligent student and you should be proud regardless. You’ve done your best and so just take some time to reflect. Just think, I’m sure with those stats you’ve got offers from some pretty good unis and you’ll do amazing no matter where you go.
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threeportdrift
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(Original post by helpme3456)
...............
  1. Continue working for 4 A*s
  2. Contemplate what you might do on a Gap Year that's relevant and earns money and apply
  3. On results day, see what grades you've got and how you feel, then either go to Warwick or take the gap year and re-apply.
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dapapfc
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(Original post by helpme3456)
I've just recieved my rejection letter from Cambridge university (for Comp Sci) and it hurts really badly to say the least. It came as such a shock to me after everything I had done. For context I am predicted 4 A*s at A level, have achieved a grade 7 (out of 9) in CTMUA and have a detailed personal statement / teacher reference about everything which I have done (involving a vast amount of complex programming projects which I have done in my free time). The interview also went decently however I made some errors when I was put on the spot.

Right now I am grieving about this and what makes it worse is that I really liked Cambridge's approach to computer science specifically (i.e. focus on maths). Everyone I knew thought I was one of the most likely people to get an offer but alas I have achieved nothing.

What should I do now? Should I consider reapplying later, should I ask for feedback, etc.

I have offers from other Uni's (i.e. Warwick) also, however worry that Warwick may not be as focused on the mathematical side of computer science as Cambridge.

Any advice / support is appreciated.
Hey,
First of all, sorry to hear about your rejection. It can be very bothering to know.
On the other hand, you know you did your best. You tried as much as you could and you know you made your best shot, so that’s a definite plus for you to keep in mind. A rejection is not the end of the world; right now it may seem so, but it will not play such a role in your life.
Undergraduate courses tend to be much more balanced between all universities, and they have an equivalent value. The majority of UK unis can offer the same standards as Cambridge.
I know Cambridge has a prestigious name and it can be very intriguing, but it is still early, and you still have time to go there, maybe later.
About the course program, maybe you will lot find such a fitting one for you in other universities, but remember that you will study your preferred subject anyhow, and later on you can focus on the aspects of it you really enjoy and find interesting.
We’ve lived through a Cambridge rejection in the family, and let me tell you, it was not worth the grief.
As for what you should do now, I’d advise against reapplying. Cambridge is a bit harsh with second time applicants. A feedback from them could be useful for you though, since you’ll understand what you should opt to develop and correct and become the best version of yourself.
Don’t worry about the rejection; it does not mean you are not worth it.
Keep up with the great work!
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swanseajack1
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The competition to get into Cambridge is huge and many very able students fail to get in every year. it sounds like you are 1 of many. Personally my advice would be to move on and look elsewhere. There are loads of excellent universities out there and also many students who failed to get into Cambridge elsewhere. You could take a gap year and reapply to Cambridge but the stats are not in your favour. I would take your time to think it over. You dont need to make a decision until May. Attend visit days elsewhere and come to your decision in late April
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helpme3456
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(Original post by dapapfc)
Hey,
First of all, sorry to hear about your rejection. It can be very bothering to know.
On the other hand, you know you did your best. You tried as much as you could and you know you made your best shot, so that’s a definite plus for you to keep in mind. A rejection is not the end of the world; right now it may seem so, but it will not play such a role in your life.
Undergraduate courses tend to be much more balanced between all universities, and they have an equivalent value. The majority of UK unis can offer the same standards as Cambridge.
I know Cambridge has a prestigious name and it can be very intriguing, but it is still early, and you still have time to go there, maybe later.
About the course program, maybe you will lot find such a fitting one for you in other universities, but remember that you will study your preferred subject anyhow, and later on you can focus on the aspects of it you really enjoy and find interesting.
We’ve lived through a Cambridge rejection in the family, and let me tell you, it was not worth the grief.
As for what you should do now, I’d advise against reapplying. Cambridge is a bit harsh with second time applicants. A feedback from them could be useful for you though, since you’ll understand what you should opt to develop and correct and become the best version of yourself.
Don’t worry about the rejection; it does not mean you are not worth it.
Keep up with the great work!
Hello and thank you for the detailed fast reply. There was one thing I forgot to mention in my post and that was how this year the exams taken by applicants changed from CSAT (based on correct working only) to CTMUA (based on correct answers only). Unfortunately I didn't realise that this happened until a month prior to the exam (hence I was revising for the wrong test), therefore I had to cram the entire syllabus for the test, therefore I feel that I would have done better if I knew this information sooner (I was also a bit burnt out by the time I went for the interview).

Is this something I could (or should) mention to Cambridge?
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dapapfc
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(Original post by helpme3456)
Hello and thank you for the detailed fast reply. There was one thing I forgot to mention in my post and that was how this year the exams taken by applicants changed from CSAT (based on correct working only) to CTMUA (based on correct answers only). Unfortunately I didn't realise that this happened until a month prior to the exam (hence I was revising for the wrong test), therefore I had to cram the entire syllabus for the test, therefore I feel that I would have done better if I knew this information sooner (I was also a bit burnt out by the time I went for the interview).

Is this something I could (or should) mention to Cambridge?
That’s no biggie! Those mistakes happen and they are human errors! Nothing to blame yourself about!
Even when not giving your best shot, you know your value, and anyone else’s opinion is secondary.
You could mention that you respect their decision etc, but do ask them what flaws your interview and application had, what they didn’t like and maybe what they particularly like. Knowing thyself is really important, and an “autopsy” of your application could be useful for you!
Think about only one thing: they will be the ones that will regret not accepting you. It is in your hand to prove them wrong mate!
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chloebird
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(Original post by helpme3456)
I've just recieved my rejection letter from Cambridge university (for Comp Sci) and it hurts really badly to say the least. It came as such a shock to me after everything I had done. For context I am predicted 4 A*s at A level, have achieved a grade 7 (out of 9) in CTMUA and have a detailed personal statement / teacher reference about everything which I have done (involving a vast amount of complex programming projects which I have done in my free time). The interview also went decently however I made some errors when I was put on the spot.

Right now I am grieving about this and what makes it worse is that I really liked Cambridge's approach to computer science specifically (i.e. focus on maths). Everyone I knew thought I was one of the most likely people to get an offer but alas I have achieved nothing.

What should I do now? Should I consider reapplying later, should I ask for feedback, etc.

I have offers from other Uni's (i.e. Warwick) also, however worry that Warwick may not be as focused on the mathematical side of computer science as Cambridge.

Any advice / support is appreciated.
You wouldn’t want to be surrounded by those posh anyway 😂😂 other unis will give you more worldly experience rather than being surrounded by grown babies shocked that they aren’t the smartest person in the room anymore and mummy wants them to start paying for their own violin lessons. You’ll be less of an ******* this way-lucky break! See it as a good thing, you’ll probably be far more likeable for not going.
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aaa1234287
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(Original post by helpme3456)
I've just recieved my rejection letter from Cambridge university (for Comp Sci) and it hurts really badly to say the least. It came as such a shock to me after everything I had done. For context I am predicted 4 A*s at A level, have achieved a grade 7 (out of 9) in CTMUA and have a detailed personal statement / teacher reference about everything which I have done (involving a vast amount of complex programming projects which I have done in my free time). The interview also went decently however I made some errors when I was put on the spot.

Right now I am grieving about this and what makes it worse is that I really liked Cambridge's approach to computer science specifically (i.e. focus on maths). Everyone I knew thought I was one of the most likely people to get an offer but alas I have achieved nothing.

What should I do now? Should I consider reapplying later, should I ask for feedback, etc.

I have offers from other Uni's (i.e. Warwick) also, however worry that Warwick may not be as focused on the mathematical side of computer science as Cambridge.

Any advice / support is appreciated.
I've just been rejected from Cambridge (King's College) for Comp Sci too, so I know how you feel. I'm doing the IB and I have a predicted grade of 44/45. I thought my interview went okay, although the CTMUA could have been better. Considering all the effort and time I put into this, the rejection is definitely a huge disappointment. I've definitely let down a lot of people including myself, and I almost wish I never applied so I wouldn't have had to go through all this just to be rejected in the end.

This is the first rejection I've received. I also hold an offer from Warwick, and hopefully soon from Imperial as well. This is definitely difficult to go through, but knowing there are other people like myself helps, I hope it helps you too!
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swanseajack1
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(Original post by aaa1234287)
I've just been rejected from Cambridge (King's College) for Comp Sci too, so I know how you feel. I'm doing the IB and I have a predicted grade of 44/45. I thought my interview went okay, although the CTMUA could have been better. Considering all the effort and time I put into this, the rejection is definitely a huge disappointment. I've definitely let down a lot of people including myself, and I almost wish I never applied so I wouldn't have had to go through all this just to be rejected in the end.

This is the first rejection I've received. I also hold an offer from Warwick, and hopefully soon from Imperial as well. This is definitely difficult to go through, but knowing there are other people like myself helps, I hope it helps you too!
I am very concerned that you feel you have let a lot of people down. You havent and dont think that. You have given your all and done everything you could have done like OP. Entry to Cambridge for CS is just so competitive and many excellent applicants like yourselves get rejected. Statistically many more people get rejected than accepted. Getting into Cambridge involves a degree of luck which neither of you had. Time to move on to your other target universities which hopefully you will get offers from although Imperial is also extremely competitive and there is no guarantee you will get an offer.
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chloebird
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(Original post by swanseajack1)
I am very concerned that you feel you have let a lot of people down. You havent and dont think that. You have given your all and done everything you could have done like OP. Entry to Cambridge for CS is just so competitive and many excellent applicants like yourselves get rejected. Statistically many more people get rejected than accepted. Getting into Cambridge involves a degree of luck which neither of you had. Time to move on to your other target universities which hopefully you will get offers from although Imperial is also extremely competitive and there is no guarantee you will get an offer.
Dude that luck thing is so truuuuuue! You’d be amazed how many people put it down without even looking at their field, graduate prospects, teaching rating, costs or anything like that they just see that they’re number 1 (largely because of research and entry requirements) and assume that means they’re the best. Hell a couple of my mates who would ****ing HATE going there applied just to see if they would get in as a laugh. You’ve gotta think if everyone just assumes they must be the best without doing their research they must get THOUSANDS of applicants compared to other unis-not much you can do about that! There were probably like 5 other people with an application and interview EXACTLY equal to yours it could have come down to random elimination they’re just so in demand
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aaa1234287
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(Original post by swanseajack1)
I am very concerned that you feel you have let a lot of people down. You havent and dont think that. You have given your all and done everything you could have done like OP. Entry to Cambridge for CS is just so competitive and many excellent applicants like yourselves get rejected. Statistically many more people get rejected than accepted. Getting into Cambridge involves a degree of luck which neither of you had. Time to move on to your other target universities which hopefully you will get offers from although Imperial is also extremely competitive and there is no guarantee you will get an offer.
Thank you for your support, it means a lot; and I understand that a lot of this is up to fate, but I've literally never worked for anything as hard as I have for an offer from Cambridge, so to be rejected is nothing short of disheartening. For now, I'm going to focus my efforts into school and securing offers from the best possible unis, and hopefully something will work out in the end, even if its not what I envisioned it to be.
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swanseajack1
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(Original post by aaa1234287)
Thank you for your support, it means a lot; and I understand that a lot of this is up to fate, but I've literally never worked for anything as hard as I have for an offer from Cambridge, so to be rejected is nothing short of disheartening. For now, I'm going to focus my efforts into school and securing offers from the best possible unis, and hopefully something will work out in the end, even if its not what I envisioned it to be.
Getting rejections is very disheartening but unfortunately it is part of life. For many and I suspect this applies to both of you a rejection from a university is the first real rejection you get. However in life you will get others. At the moment it is particularly raw and hopefully with time it will get easier. CS is one of the most competitive courses in Cambridge and I believe only something like 1 in 10 get offers so the stats are stacked against you to start with. When someone is interviewed it is how the interviewer perceives you and that is the element of luck that hasnt gone for you. Your application was no doubt excellent and your predicted grades outstanding but what none of us know is what exactly the interviewers are looking for and that is the element of luck that I refer to. Anyway you have an offer from Warwick and hopefully Imperial and both are excellent universities. Dont believe that you have failed yourself or others. You have done everything you could have and nobody can do any more than give it their best shot. As you say concentrate on your exams and go to visit days to decide which of your other choices is right for you. Dont just go on reputation. Go where you will be happiest. You dont need to make any decision until early May so take your time and make a decision in April by which time hopefully you might have began to get over your rejection.
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_gcx
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(Original post by dapapfc)
Undergraduate courses tend to be much more balanced between all universities, and they have an equivalent value. The majority of UK unis can offer the same standards as Cambridge.
Disagree with this bit. Not all degree programmes are created equal and some subjects have a very wide variation in academic standards/course difficulty. Maths this is particularly true for, I'm not sure whether it's the case with CS, where there is a wide range of ability in the pool of applicants which naturally means that courses are sometimes pitched to quite different levels. In maths in fact no university except oxbridge is really oxbridge standard for a fair amount of the programme.

However, in terms of value - yeah, but you're not just going to the university for the piece of paper at the end. Or at least, I would hope not...

OP probably wants to go to a university with a strong maths department so Warwick will probably be decent for them. No idea how mathematical it is, but the OP can explore Discrete Maths (basically maths and compsci) if there isn't enough of a mathematical element in straight CS.
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jason0597
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I applied to Cambridge last year (Chemical engineering via engineering) and I was devastated when I was rejected from even having an interview. After a couple of days I got over it though. I'm now studying at Sheffield (NOT Hallam). I was predicted A*A*A* and got A*A*A.
Don't fuss too much about it, there are some other unis in the UK that are just as good.
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helpme3456
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(Original post by _gcx)
OP probably wants to go to a university with a strong maths department so Warwick will probably be decent for them. No idea how mathematical it is, but the OP can explore Discrete Maths (basically maths and compsci) if there isn't enough of a mathematical element in straight CS.
I didn't mention this in my original post however the main reason as to why I applied to Cambridge in the first place was because of the way in which the teach CS. They put an extremely high emphasis on maths which I find to be very important (in fact I could have easily chosen maths over computer science if it weren't for how much I enjoy the concepts / logic behind / practical usage (especially for future work) of CS), and I worry that other universities (i.e. Warwick) wouldn't go as in depth into the mathematical side of the subject as Cambridge. I do enjoy Discrete Maths (FM A level), however don't want to miss out on the Pure and Mechanics sides also (which I find myself using quite alot in my personal programming).
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_gcx
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(Original post by helpme3456)
I didn't mention this in my original post however the main reason as to why I applied to Cambridge in the first place was because of the way in which the teach CS. They put an extremely high emphasis on maths which I find to be very important (in fact I could have easily chosen maths over computer science if it weren't for how much I enjoy the concepts / logic behind / practical usage (especially for future work) of CS), and I worry that other universities (i.e. Warwick) wouldn't go as in depth into the mathematical side of the subject as Cambridge. I do enjoy Discrete Maths (FM A level), however don't want to miss out on the Pure and Mechanics sides also (which I find myself using quite alot in my personal programming).
This is something you should research. It sounds like you'd be better suited for a joint program in maths/compsci, I think.

Discrete Maths at Warwick is a maths and computer science degree, where you can cover any aspect of maths you like. The name is somewhat confusing, granted. For instance in your first year, you do analysis, linear algebra and some elementary number/set theory as core, with options available in vector calculus, (called unhelpfully geometry and motion) abstract algebra, probability, geometry, differential equations, etc. Provided you pick enough maths options, you may have the opportunity to transfer to just maths if you want. (to do this you will need to take Differential Equations A and Geometry and Motion) I really think you should look into it, it really seems like a program you'd be interested in. You could email to see if they'd consider switching you over. There is a huge range of options available in the maths department, and you can probably end up doing more maths than you would have at Cambridge possibly if you choose to?

There are obviously modules in discrete maths within the discrete maths degree. Discrete Maths 2 actually looks pretty involved and hard, certainly harder than any first year maths module!
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craftywizardboy
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(Original post by jason0597)
I applied to Cambridge last year (Chemical engineering via engineering) and I was devastated when I was rejected from even having an interview. After a couple of days I got over it though. I'm now studying at Sheffield (NOT Hallam). I was predicted A*A*A* and got A*A*A.
Don't fuss too much about it, there are some other unis in the UK that are just as good.
I like how you had to specifically mention that you aren't studying at Hallam. I think with the grades that you got I'm sure people can infer which Sheffield Uni you're at!
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chloebird
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(Original post by craftywizardboy)
i like how you had to specifically mention that you aren't studying at hallam. I think with the grades that you got i'm sure people can infer which sheffield uni you're at!
oof roasted
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EleaGR
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@[user=5125834]helpme3456
@[user=5126644]aaa1234287

Hi, guys! I'm so sorry to read about your rejections. I have a daughter who went through this a couple of years ago. She had applied for NatScis at Cambridge (Downing College) with 45/45 IB and a stellar record of previous years. All of her middle school and high school years she got 20 or 19 11/12 (Greek school) She never had experienced failure until she got rejected from Cam after pooling.

She had the same feelings like you do. She was talking about how she failed everyone that ever believed in her, her family, her teachers, her friends. And if she only knew how horrible it would be, she would never have applied in the first place. She is now in Imperial studying Medical Biosciences. She got 45 in IB.

I will tell you both what I told her that day in January 2 years ago. It's difficult to understand now that you are not at loss. In fact, you have gained so much more than you think. The whole process you've been through is a unique experience not anyone can go through. The paperwork you had to go through, the research and study for the admissions test, the preparation for the interviews, the actual interviews! All this work you've put down, all this effort will most definitely help you succeed in your results not only during your upcoming exams but for years ahead. Your percistence and commitment will not change. This is who you are now. And this first rejection is a blessing in disguise, because it prepares you for a lifetime full of ups and downs. Hey, be proud of yourselves! You've made it till the very end and got rejected from Cambridge afterall!

I know it is hard times now and you are sad, but give it a little bit of time and everything will work out in the end. In my opinion, you should put this behind you and turn the page. Cambridge is amazing, but not perfect. Not everyone is happy there and you can find success following a different path. And maybe later on, the timing could be right for you to go there for a postgraduate degree.

I wish you both all the best for your upcoming exams and please... Chins up, smiles on! You are worthy! 😊
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