546anonymous
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hi
i just got rejected from Cambridge (st catz) - like literally a few mins ago. i didn’t even get invited to interview - not to sound cocky or overconfident (as i’m definitely not feeling that way at all atm) i just don’t understand why i’ve been turned down already... i had pretty good gcses (9999888776A*) and i’m predicated A*A*A*A at a level (bio, chem, maths and business - with the A being in chem). i did the nsaa and felt it went pretty well and i understand cambridge is very very selective and science courses are always oversubscribed but cambridge are said to interview like 75% of their applicants so it’s really upsetting i appear to have been in the bottom 25% of applicants. i’m also now really worried my other unis will reject me aswell and i’ll end up w no places????
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Deggs_14
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(Original post by 546anonymous)
hi
i just got rejected from Cambridge (st catz) - like literally a few mins ago. i didn’t even get invited to interview - not to sound cocky or overconfident (as i’m definitely not feeling that way at all atm) i just don’t understand why i’ve been turned down already... i had pretty good gcses (9999888776A*) and i’m predicated A*A*A*A at a level (bio, chem, maths and business - with the A being in chem). i did the nsaa and felt it went pretty well and i understand cambridge is very very selective and science courses are always oversubscribed but cambridge are said to interview like 75% of their applicants so it’s really upsetting i appear to have been in the bottom 25% of applicants. i’m also now really worried my other unis will reject me aswell and i’ll end up w no places????
Cambridge is a whole different selection process and system in general when applying to compared to all the other universities across the country. It can be disheartening, but I'm sure that you will have offers elsewhere from other universities and courses that you've applied for. Just remember the application process to Oxbridge is a completely entity in itself in comparison.

Also it's important to consider about Covid this year. There will be many reapplicants, second-time applicants and people from gap years or applying from abroad as they were unable to attend university or went on a gap year. Places will be squeezed and at an all-time high this year.
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brokestudent3
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personal statement probably, it normally says on UCAS why they rejected u like if competition was too high or whatever. you could email them and ask but you will get into the other universities you applied to, worst comes to worst you take a gap year and really build up on your personal statement and achievements etc once you’ve gotten the grades you need (well done on them btw!). i had bad grades when i applied to uni for business and strathclyde, who rank rlly well for business, still gave me an offer, while edinburgh and heriot watt rejected me
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confuzzledteen
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heyy, i'm in the same boat as you - i got rejected by robinson pre-interview for economics. my GCSEs were 9999999A*AA, and i was predicted A*A*A*A (econ, chem, epq, further mathematics) at A level, and have an achieved A* in mathematics. i found the pre-interview assessment quite challenging, but hoped i'd still stand a chance at getting an interview - which clearly wasn't the case lol. i do understand where you're coming from, like the anxiety & worry that your PS may not have been good enough; I feel the same way. however, it is important to remind yourself that of the five universities you applied to, Cambridge is likely to have been THE most competitive,, hence are likely to be the most nit-picky when it comes to what they're looking for in candidates. as I saw someone post on another thread, a college could have one interview slot left but two students with equal predicted grades, except one scored a couple marks higher on the entrance exam/ included one more essay competition in their PS or whatever. it's down to luck ultimately.. good luck with your other universities though! x
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Gazino
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(Original post by 546anonymous)
hi
i just got rejected from Cambridge (st catz) - like literally a few mins ago. i didn’t even get invited to interview - not to sound cocky or overconfident (as i’m definitely not feeling that way at all atm) i just don’t understand why i’ve been turned down already... i had pretty good gcses (9999888776A*) and i’m predicated A*A*A*A at a level (bio, chem, maths and business - with the A being in chem). i did the nsaa and felt it went pretty well and i understand cambridge is very very selective and science courses are always oversubscribed but cambridge are said to interview like 75% of their applicants so it’s really upsetting i appear to have been in the bottom 25% of applicants. i’m also now really worried my other unis will reject me aswell and i’ll end up w no places????
Just to let you know, you are not alone.
I was an applicant for computer science to Kings. My GCSE's are basically the same as yours and I was predicted triple A* (with another subject already at A* under my belt). I had a good range of super curriculars; won a regional UKMT team maths competition, took part in one of the teams representing the UK at a global robotics competition in the US, consistent and interesting further reading, and plenty of personal robotics/coding projects. But was also rejected pre-interview yesterday.
But a few hours down the road of rejection, I realised that life just doesn't go the way we all intended it to go. And if there's anything that I learned from attending all those competitions, it's that there are hundreds, maybe even thousands of other people who are much better than I am and more deserving of the place at such a prestigious university.
There are a lot of people in the same boat as us, don't get me wrong I'm still not happy at all, but I suppose this year we were all simply very unlucky. Never mind the fact that thanks to the previous year group, top unis in the current application cycle are allocated less spaces.
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ShootForTheStars
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(Original post by 546anonymous)
hi
i just got rejected from Cambridge (st catz) - like literally a few mins ago. i didn’t even get invited to interview - not to sound cocky or overconfident (as i’m definitely not feeling that way at all atm) i just don’t understand why i’ve been turned down already... i had pretty good gcses (9999888776A*) and i’m predicated A*A*A*A at a level (bio, chem, maths and business - with the A being in chem). i did the nsaa and felt it went pretty well and i understand cambridge is very very selective and science courses are always oversubscribed but cambridge are said to interview like 75% of their applicants so it’s really upsetting i appear to have been in the bottom 25% of applicants. i’m also now really worried my other unis will reject me aswell and i’ll end up w no places????
I'm sorry to hear that. How many questions did you answer on the NSAA , if you don't mind saying?
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anthonyphung
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(Original post by 546anonymous)
hi
i just got rejected from Cambridge (st catz) - like literally a few mins ago. i didn’t even get invited to interview - not to sound cocky or overconfident (as i’m definitely not feeling that way at all atm) i just don’t understand why i’ve been turned down already... i had pretty good gcses (9999888776A*) and i’m predicated A*A*A*A at a level (bio, chem, maths and business - with the A being in chem). i did the nsaa and felt it went pretty well and i understand cambridge is very very selective and science courses are always oversubscribed but cambridge are said to interview like 75% of their applicants so it’s really upsetting i appear to have been in the bottom 25% of applicants. i’m also now really worried my other unis will reject me aswell and i’ll end up w no places????
Hi there,
I know it is somewhat frustrating, but you should not think that a rejection in Cambridge means an absolute "door shut" at other unis. Someone in the main Cambridge thread said "Rejection is just redirection" and it actually resonates throughout the whole forum! This year, I feel that Cambridge is way more competitive as the already limited number of seats becomes more limited due to previous year. I have also heard that there is a sharp rise in international applicant this year, too, making Cambridge application extremely stressful and demanding!
I also applied for bio natsci at St. Catz, I receieved the invitation this morning, but as much as I felt over the moon, it made me reconsidered the whole application process at Cambridge. I felt terrible after the NSAA, I cried that whole night. But then I realized the weighting is distributed evenly across all aspects: UCAS, PS, reference.... From FOI data, lots of applicants still received an offer despite their undesirable nsaa score, and some with higher scores just did not get in. So they actually judge it hollistically.
Given that lots of students (especially international) are applying this year, the PS becomes a somewhat handy tool to turn the table! I could have guessed that my interview invitation was due to my extracurriculars in the PS. I have my gratitudes for all of the Olympiads and competitions I have participated in the past 3 years and I think that packed a punch in my overall application. International students are especially competitive when it comes to these things, as they could have conquered many of the Olympiads/competitions in their respective countries. And because of that, scores and grades alone do not give a powerful enough boost. In my school, most of top students are predicted at the top grades, so imagine if there are thousands of schools, the predicted grades are somehow like "fish in the sea" and therefore they are searching for something else to define you. I think that is where the PS plays a more important role this year.
But once again, Cambridge is tough, as we have to admit that it is one of the World's Finest. But it does not mean that any other opportunity is gone. If not undergraduate at Cambridge, then maybe Postgrad!
so head up and do your best!
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Gazino
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(Original post by ShootForTheStars)
I'm sorry to hear that. How many questions did you answer on the NSAA , if you don't mind saying?
I didn't do the NSAA(admissions test for natural sciences I assume?), Comp Sci. applicants are required to do the CTMUA.
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Gent2324
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most applicants have similar grades to you, you just didnt stand out.
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AndyChow
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It's st Catz you have Peter Wothers there, too many chemistry students applying there so I guess they've taken up a lot of NatSci places.
Honestly your grades don't stand out since people who apply Cambridge will have 2A* and 10+ GCSE 9/8 anyways. But I do feel for you for not at least being invited to an interview to impress.

I think your A in chem was the straw that broke the camel's back. Even for bio route they still want good chemistry competency because many pick 1st year chem and biochem
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AndyChow
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(Original post by anthonyphung)
PS. I have my gratitudes for all of the Olympiads and competitions I have participated in the past 3 years and I think that packed a punch in my overall application.
Indeed, you have Peter Wothers there, he is literally THE MAN who runs the Chemistry Olympiad.
I wish you the best of luck in your interview, and if my previous experience was anything to go by, they will only ask pre-set questions at your interview with 1st year uni stuff. It's a technical interview rather than 'get to know you' so better get your biology banged out! Good luck.
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Muttley79
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(Original post by 546anonymous)
hi
i just got rejected from Cambridge (st catz) - like literally a few mins ago. i didn’t even get invited to interview - not to sound cocky or overconfident (as i’m definitely not feeling that way at all atm) i just don’t understand why i’ve been turned down already... i had pretty good gcses (9999888776A*) and i’m predicated A*A*A*A at a level (bio, chem, maths and business - with the A being in chem). i did the nsaa and felt it went pretty well and i understand cambridge is very very selective and science courses are always oversubscribed but cambridge are said to interview like 75% of their applicants so it’s really upsetting i appear to have been in the bottom 25% of applicants. i’m also now really worried my other unis will reject me aswell and i’ll end up w no places????
Think of it as their loss and move on excel elsewhere

YOU are not a failure - the process is.
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_gcx
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would suggest it may have been your nsaa score. you can ask for feedback later on but I'd imagine that's the most suspect thing.
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Durhamdad
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(Original post by 546anonymous)
hi
i just got rejected from Cambridge (st catz) - like literally a few mins ago. i didn’t even get invited to interview - not to sound cocky or overconfident (as i’m definitely not feeling that way at all atm) i just don’t understand why i’ve been turned down already... i had pretty good gcses (9999888776A*) and i’m predicated A*A*A*A at a level (bio, chem, maths and business - with the A being in chem). i did the nsaa and felt it went pretty well and i understand cambridge is very very selective and science courses are always oversubscribed but cambridge are said to interview like 75% of their applicants so it’s really upsetting i appear to have been in the bottom 25% of applicants. i’m also now really worried my other unis will reject me aswell and i’ll end up w no places????
My son got the same yesterday from st catz for engineering : rejection with no interview. But grades like yours will get you almost anywhere else!! Their loss.
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snazzy viking
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I was also rejected pre-interview for bionatsci (corpus christi)

Would like to think my personal statement was strong, (I worked on it for 2 months, sometimes days at a time), my reference and ECs were good, I am from a non-selective state school, my predicted grades were the highest they could possibly be in Maths, Biology, Chemistry and the EPQ and I did get 9888887777 at GCSE which was amazing for me, but for Cambridge standards, I don't know (the 9 was in biology). I achieved these at the same time whilst dealing with depression but I never disclosed this and regret not doing so, but I doubt they would have changed their mind if I mentioned that.

My PS was solely about chemistry though and I didn't feel like I did well at all in the NSAA, yet I did feel hard done by given that I spent weeks and weeks of revising for it when mocks were at the same time only to be told I had to self-isolate on the day of the test. I was then given less than 24 hours notice before the test that I was going to be doing the test on Zoom a week later and didn't feel in the right mindset, but that isn't an excuse for my bad performance there.

I am not too bothered about being rejected as I anticipated it would happen eventually, just not this early. Hopefully, it is indeed a redirection and perhaps we were simply unlucky with the circumstances of this year. You will be able to thrive wherever you go!
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anthonyphung
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(Original post by AndyChow)
Indeed, you have Peter Wothers there, he is literally THE MAN who runs the Chemistry Olympiad.
I wish you the best of luck in your interview, and if my previous experience was anything to go by, they will only ask pre-set questions at your interview with 1st year uni stuff. It's a technical interview rather than 'get to know you' so better get your biology banged out! Good luck.
Thank you so much mate! I really appreciate it!
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Muttley79
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(Original post by Durhamdad)
My son got the same yesterday from st catz for engineering : rejection with no interview. But grades like yours will get you almost anywhere else!! Their loss.
There are better places for Engineering anyway ...
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