Anonymous754328
Badges: 8
Rep:
?
#1
Report Thread starter 1 week ago
#1
Hi I'm an Oxford offer holder and I was wondering if anyone else is feeling a similar way. When I got my offer it first felt like a dream come true, it's been my dream since I was 12 and I would wish every day that I would get in, but now, after a few weeks of getting my offer, certain aspects of Oxford are starting to worry me. At points I've almost come close to turning my offer down (but I've told myself it would be stupid if I didn't try it and then I can leave if I hate it).
My main worry is about not fitting in and also not liking the "atmosphere". I'm at a state school and have an offer from a college with a high number of private school students. At the time I applied because I thought it was absolutely beautiful, but I regret not applying to a more diverse college like LMH or St Hugh etc. Does anyone else have similar worries? Also I've unfortunately stumbled across a few Oxford blogs (something I should have avoided) and there seems to be this slightly nasty competitive nature between colleges, like as if some are better than others, and I just feel like its such a bad vibe that some of the luckiest students in the world feel the need to compare which ones "best" and how how getting a 2.2 or 2.1 is "embarrassing". Is Oxford filled wth people like this? or are they a small minority? I know I sound so pathetic and I'm probably stressing over nothing, but I would really appreciate if anyone could talk about any experiences/feelings they've experienced too.
1
reply
Anonymous754328
Badges: 8
Rep:
?
#2
Report Thread starter 1 week ago
#2
Also, anyone who hasn't been successful at getting an offer are welcome to reply too- maybe you can kick some sense into me that I'm being ungrateful?
0
reply
VeritySleeps
Badges: 11
Rep:
?
#3
Report 1 week ago
#3
(Original post by Anonymous754328)
Also, anyone who hasn't been successful at getting an offer are welcome to reply too- maybe you can kick some sense into me that I'm being ungrateful?
I haven't applied to Oxford as I never had the grades and their medicine course didn't interest me but I thought I could offer some advice as someone who has done a year of uni before. Go where you will be happiest. It depends where else you applied, and where else you received an offer for, and what the course is, a lot of different things. This will be a competitive course throughout, will that push you or make you anxious? You will also be with a lot of private school students, will they annoy you or is it something good to get used to in your future career? I do think it's a great thing to have but somewhere else may make you happier for 3+ years and you can always hold that you got an offer. If you think you'll enjoy it though, go for it! You've done so well this far and whatever you pick is something you deserve to be proud of
0
reply
username3906006
Badges: 10
Rep:
?
#4
Report 1 week ago
#4
Hi, I got an offer for Oxford this year too and I'm at a state school. I was really worried at first that I wouldn't be good enough, or that they'd somehow made a mistake, and I was thinking of turning it down. I've spoken to some people and they all seemed really nice and said that they felt the same, so I've decided to accept it. There are lots of people in the same boat as you, so don't be afraid!
0
reply
Interea
Badges: 18
Rep:
?
#5
Report 1 week ago
#5
Yes there will be a few people who are overly competitive or overly entitled, and there may be a few more than at other unis (such is the nature of putting so many high achievers in one place!), but I wouldn't let it be the deciding factor for you. Universities are much larger than schools, so you will be able to find "your people" regardless of who is in your college. There will be people there who think getting a first is the be all and end all, but there will also be people who are there just because they love their subject - they'll do well because of that passion and their previous good grades, but they won't stop enjoying themselves just to get a 1st rather than a 2:1. I promise you you'll be able to find people you can relate to and get along with if you decide the course/university is your favourite.

(Also, as someone who went to a private school on a scholarship, laughing at the overly entitled rich people trying to function without their parents being there to do everything for them can be a great way to bond! )
2
reply
Yewfelle
Badges: 11
Rep:
?
#6
Report 1 week ago
#6
Go where you want to go. You're not being "ungrateful" for not wanting to go to Oxford - I also have an offer but I'm declining, heck I've decided to decline all my offers, including an unconditional, and go through ucas extra/clearing, because I have decided I'd rather stay at home for uni. Forget about prestige, there is no point going somewhere if it makes you miserable for three years! My cousin went to Oxford and had a really awful time, she really struggled with the pressure and stress of the whole experience (also the accommodation was infested with bedbugs, that's a story for another time). She nearly had a complete breakdown worrying about getting a 2.1 (which in the end, she got). A lot of her friends also wished they had gone elsewhere.

Oxford ain't heaven on earth, and it's not the be all and end all of life, either. There are plenty of other universities out there, you know. As for private school ratio, yeah it's mostly private school kids, the place is something of a Tory breeding ground (particularly the debating club). But that's most Russel Group unis for you, from what I can tell.
2
reply
Yewfelle
Badges: 11
Rep:
?
#7
Report 1 week ago
#7
Oh yeah, another thing, people who go to Oxford (or Cambridge, for that matter) aren't somehow superior, smarter human beings than the rest of us mere mortals. Getting into Oxbridge is more to do about training, socioeconomic background, personality type, but mostly tutoring and access to it, than anything else. Likewise going somewhere else does not mean that you will get a worse education or have a worse job.

Plus just look at the current government to see the absolute s***heads that come out of the fine institution.
1
reply
AJ1515
Badges: 10
Rep:
?
#8
Report 1 week ago
#8
First of all, congratulations in getting into Oxford! You probably have amazing grades, personal statement and reference!
When it comes to picking a university, don’t worry about the prestige, at the end of the day all that matters is that you’re going to be going to Oxford for 3+ if you choose to accept it. Do you really want to go there or do you want to go to a university that makes you happy? What I’d say is, forget about how prestigious Oxford university is for a minute, and then imagine yourself going there and if you’d like to study there if it wasn’t prestigious. (Personally when it came to picking A levels I picked Maths and Further Maths as they were academic but then dropped them both within the first two weeks of school because academically great or not, I found them either lacking for me or hard, or both!) When you go to a university I feel like pick one that is the best for you, not anyone else. Every student is different, and even if some students are applying for the same course to the same university with the same/similar grades, they will only come from different backgrounds, stages in life or have had totally different experiences in life. Do you want to go to Oxford because you like the course and the societies for example? Then you should go. If you don’t like the course or the university then try to find universities that you like, that have a course you want to do and that has interesting modules or more exams/coursework or is just generally in a good location. (Maybe you want to spend the next 3+ years in Scotland? Or maybe in Northern Ireland or Wales instead?)
There are many factors you can be picky about when choosing a university, so don’t worry about turning down an offer, or not turning down an offer.
Of course, it’ll probably be easier to find a job if you studied in Oxbridge, but do you want the experience of the university or the employability aspects of it?
It varies from person to person!
Just try to ask yourself this: Do I want to study at there for 3+ years of my life and if I don’t are the extra benefits really worth it?
Good luck in your choices!
0
reply
artful_lounger
Badges: 20
Rep:
?
#9
Report 1 week ago
#9
Pretty sure that statistically most students at Oxford get a 2:1, so doubt that would be considered "embarrassing". Likewise I think inter-college rivalries are being overblown by those bloggers because they have nothing better to do with their lives than try and be controversial on the internet for some semblance of validation from likes and subscribers/followers/etc.

If you base your decisions on the façade created by people on the internet of their own lives, which is never representative of anything except how they wish to be seen, you will probably make a lot of decisions you regret in your life. Social media (including blogging) is like "reality" TV. It's not real, it's a carefully staged and manufactured persona, crafted to make the person creating it feel better than others while simultaneously seeking validation from those others. There is little point viewing it as anything other than entertainment at best.
1
reply
Peterhouse Admissions
Badges: 11
Rep:
?
#10
Report 1 week ago
#10
(Original post by Anonymous754328)
Hi I'm an Oxford offer holder and I was wondering if anyone else is feeling a similar way. When I got my offer it first felt like a dream come true, it's been my dream since I was 12 and I would wish every day that I would get in, but now, after a few weeks of getting my offer, certain aspects of Oxford are starting to worry me. At points I've almost come close to turning my offer down (but I've told myself it would be stupid if I didn't try it and then I can leave if I hate it).
My main worry is about not fitting in and also not liking the "atmosphere". I'm at a state school and have an offer from a college with a high number of private school students. At the time I applied because I thought it was absolutely beautiful, but I regret not applying to a more diverse college like LMH or St Hugh etc. Does anyone else have similar worries? Also I've unfortunately stumbled across a few Oxford blogs (something I should have avoided) and there seems to be this slightly nasty competitive nature between colleges, like as if some are better than others, and I just feel like its such a bad vibe that some of the luckiest students in the world feel the need to compare which ones "best" and how how getting a 2.2 or 2.1 is "embarrassing". Is Oxford filled wth people like this? or are they a small minority? I know I sound so pathetic and I'm probably stressing over nothing, but I would really appreciate if anyone could talk about any experiences/feelings they've experienced too.
(Original post by Anonymous754328)
Also, anyone who hasn't been successful at getting an offer are welcome to reply too- maybe you can kick some sense into me that I'm being ungrateful?
I know this is a Cambridge account, but I wanted to respond to this from the perspective of someone who has studied at a very similar university (Cambridge) and who's worked with offer holders for several years now top hopefully reassure you a little bit.

Firstly, these are entirely understandable things to worry about. It's always difficult to get a true sense of what a place is like until you actually live there. There is some competition between colleges in terms of sports, but it's more like the competition between school houses on Sports' Day. Most actual students (certainly at Cambridge, and I would expect at Oxford too) don't take it that seriously. Colleges develop stereotypes, but they're about as valid as any other stereotype you might come across in life: i.e. not at all. Don't forget that student communities refresh themselves every 3-4 years, so what a college might have been known for 5 years ago is likely to no longer hold true.

Most university-aged students tend to be left-of-centre politically, although all political persuasions will be represented. You'll find people you really agree with, and those you don't. Your college is likely to be fairly small, but you're not restricted to making friends with those people if you don't want to. You'll meet people through your course, through any clubs or societies you belong to and can make friends from completely outside the university as well, if you want to. In terms of social background, while you'll inevitably meet people who have been to independent schools, anyone who thinks they're in any way 'better' because of it isn't worth the time of day. Most students will end up having a mixture of friends who come from different backgrounds and don't judge people on the kind of school they went to.

Next up, getting a 2.i or 2.ii is NOT embarrassing. Studying at top universities is hard. Coming out with a degree of any description is a massive achievement. I have never met a Cambridge student who takes academic competition between colleges seriously. Anybody who thinks below a 1st is embarrassing (which is not the majority of people) is probably not someone worth spending time with.

Finally, you're absolutely not obliged to feel grateful for being made an offer. Your emotions are your own, and they are valid. When making the decision of which institutions to firm and insure, think about the course and where you think you'll be happy. You have plenty of time to make that decision yet, so make sure you do your research thoroughly so you're able to make an informed decision. You wouldn't be letting anyone down by turning down your offer, just as you wouldn't if you turned down an offer from any other uni.

On that note, I'd recommend contacting your College's Admissions Office or JCR (student committee) who will be able to talk you through your worries. Many colleges will have offer holder events, either online or in person, where you can meet some current students and other offer holders. The same will likely be true of other universities as well - do go along to offer holder events for universities you're seriously considering firming or insuring as well, if you can.

I hope you find this helpful
4
reply
Anonymous754328
Badges: 8
Rep:
?
#11
Report Thread starter 1 week ago
#11
(Original post by Peterhouse Admissions)
I know this is a Cambridge account, but I wanted to respond to this from the perspective of someone who has studied at a very similar university (Cambridge) and who's worked with offer holders for several years now top hopefully reassure you a little bit.

Firstly, these are entirely understandable things to worry about. It's always difficult to get a true sense of what a place is like until you actually live there. There is some competition between colleges in terms of sports, but it's more like the competition between school houses on Sports' Day. Most actual students (certainly at Cambridge, and I would expect at Oxford too) don't take it that seriously. Colleges develop stereotypes, but they're about as valid as any other stereotype you might come across in life: i.e. not at all. Don't forget that student communities refresh themselves every 3-4 years, so what a college might have been known for 5 years ago is likely to no longer hold true.

Most university-aged students tend to be left-of-centre politically, although all political persuasions will be represented. You'll find people you really agree with, and those you don't. Your college is likely to be fairly small, but you're not restricted to making friends with those people if you don't want to. You'll meet people through your course, through any clubs or societies you belong to and can make friends from completely outside the university as well, if you want to. In terms of social background, while you'll inevitably meet people who have been to independent schools, anyone who thinks they're in any way 'better' because of it isn't worth the time of day. Most students will end up having a mixture of friends who come from different backgrounds and don't judge people on the kind of school they went to.

Next up, getting a 2.i or 2.ii is NOT embarrassing. Studying at top universities is hard. Coming out with a degree of any description is a massive achievement. I have never met a Cambridge student who takes academic competition between colleges seriously. Anybody who thinks below a 1st is embarrassing (which is not the majority of people) is probably not someone worth spending time with.

Finally, you're absolutely not obliged to feel grateful for being made an offer. Your emotions are your own, and they are valid. When making the decision of which institutions to firm and insure, think about the course and where you think you'll be happy. You have plenty of time to make that decision yet, so make sure you do your research thoroughly so you're able to make an informed decision. You wouldn't be letting anyone down by turning down your offer, just as you wouldn't if you turned down an offer from any other uni.

On that note, I'd recommend contacting your College's Admissions Office or JCR (student committee) who will be able to talk you through your worries. Many colleges will have offer holder events, either online or in person, where you can meet some current students and other offer holders. The same will likely be true of other universities as well - do go along to offer holder events for universities you're seriously considering firming or insuring as well, if you can.

I hope you find this helpful
Thank you so much for taking the time to say this. This is the kindest message! Thank you again xx
1
reply
Anonymous754328
Badges: 8
Rep:
?
#12
Report Thread starter 1 week ago
#12
(Original post by artful_lounger)
Pretty sure that statistically most students at Oxford get a 2:1, so doubt that would be considered "embarrassing". Likewise I think inter-college rivalries are being overblown by those bloggers because they have nothing better to do with their lives than try and be controversial on the internet for some semblance of validation from likes and subscribers/followers/etc.

If you base your decisions on the façade created by people on the internet of their own lives, which is never representative of anything except how they wish to be seen, you will probably make a lot of decisions you regret in your life. Social media (including blogging) is like "reality" TV. It's not real, it's a carefully staged and manufactured persona, crafted to make the person creating it feel better than others while simultaneously seeking validation from those others. There is little point viewing it as anything other than entertainment at best.
Thank you! It's so nice to hear that I'm not the only one who finds uni blogging slightly tiresome!
0
reply
Anonymous754328
Badges: 8
Rep:
?
#13
Report Thread starter 1 week ago
#13
(Original post by StillNotGinger03)
Hi, I got an offer for Oxford this year too and I'm at a state school. I was really worried at first that I wouldn't be good enough, or that they'd somehow made a mistake, and I was thinking of turning it down. I've spoken to some people and they all seemed really nice and said that they felt the same, so I've decided to accept it. There are lots of people in the same boat as you, so don't be afraid!
I felt like it was mistake too aha! That's great to hear you feel better now. May I ask if you have any other worries about it and what are they? (It's nice to hear someone is in the same boat)x
0
reply
Celtic Conjurer
Badges: 20
Rep:
?
#14
Report 1 week ago
#14
I’d say go for it. Inter college competition is negligible and most of the time it’s brought up in a jokey manner. It’s certainly not some major, all-pervasive part of Oxford life at all. I also wouldn’t worry about the students’ backgrounds per se as most will be of a liberal persuasion, even private school kids. And going to a private school doesn’t automatically make one snobby and arrogant, that’s an absurd stereotype. Most will be perfectly pleasant and friendly.
1
reply
username3906006
Badges: 10
Rep:
?
#15
Report 1 week ago
#15
(Original post by Anonymous754328)
I felt like it was mistake too aha! That's great to hear you feel better now. May I ask if you have any other worries about it and what are they? (It's nice to hear someone is in the same boat)x
My main worry is just that everybody else will be really clever! I know it's Oxford so they will be, I just worry about seeming a bit thick compared to them, haha. Not having any open days has made it a lot harder to decide as well, as I'll be going for 3 years and don't know whether I'll like it - I've never even been to Oxfordshire, let alone Oxford! :eek:
0
reply
OxFossil
Badges: 17
Rep:
?
#16
Report 1 week ago
#16
My daughter went to Christ Church from a comprehensive school. I too was worried about the reputation for snobbishness and heavy workload. Overall, I'd say her experience was that there is some basis for these reputations, but also ways of dealing with them if they arise. She's glad she went, anyhow.

She also had your worry that everyone else would be smarter than she is, but that soon dissipated. The Etonians and Harrovians are trained to present a self-confident, highly polished image to the world. Underneath, not so much. Think of our dear PM...

There is a more intense workload at Oxford. The compensation is that everyone feels it and you will get a lot more support from friends and tutors if you let them know you are struggling. A first or 2:1 is what most people get. Very few get a 2:2, but there's no magic involved; no special store of knowledge that only Oxford UGs have access to. It's just a function of the kind of people Oxford selects; people who are used to getting organised for exams. The ATs picked you because they thought, "Yep, StillNotGinger03 will do well here". They are probably right .
1
reply
Anonymous754328
Badges: 8
Rep:
?
#17
Report Thread starter 1 week ago
#17
(Original post by StillNotGinger03)
My main worry is just that everybody else will be really clever! I know it's Oxford so they will be, I just worry about seeming a bit thick compared to them, haha. Not having any open days has made it a lot harder to decide as well, as I'll be going for 3 years and don't know whether I'll like it - I've never even been to Oxfordshire, let alone Oxford! :eek:
Me too! haha yeah some stuff that comes out my mouth is really stupid! Yeah I totally agree about open days since not being able to do them makes it seem all the more distant/out of reach and mysterious. Thanks for sharing with me!
0
reply
Anonymous754328
Badges: 8
Rep:
?
#18
Report Thread starter 1 week ago
#18
(Original post by Celtic Conjurer)
I’d say go for it. Inter college competition is negligible and most of the time it’s brought up in a jokey manner. It’s certainly not some major, all-pervasive part of Oxford life at all. I also wouldn’t worry about the students’ backgrounds per se as most will be of a liberal persuasion, even private school kids. And going to a private school doesn’t automatically make one snobby and arrogant, that’s an absurd stereotype. Most will be perfectly pleasant and friendly.
thank you!
0
reply
Anonymous754328
Badges: 8
Rep:
?
#19
Report Thread starter 1 week ago
#19
(Original post by OxFossil)
My daughter went to Christ Church from a comprehensive school. I too was worried about the reputation for snobbishness and heavy workload. Overall, I'd say her experience was that there is some basis for these reputations, but also ways of dealing with them if they arise. She's glad she went, anyhow.

She also had your worry that everyone else would be smarter than she is, but that soon dissipated. The Etonians and Harrovians are trained to present a self-confident, highly polished image to the world. Underneath, not so much. Think of our dear PM...

There is a more intense workload at Oxford. The compensation is that everyone feels it and you will get a lot more support from friends and tutors if you let them know you are struggling. A first or 2:1 is what most people get. Very few get a 2:2, but there's no magic involved; no special store of knowledge that only Oxford UGs have access to. It's just a function of the kind of people Oxford selects; people who are used to getting organised for exams. The ATs picked you because they thought, "Yep, StillNotGinger03 will do well here". They are probably right .
thank you- that's reassuring !
0
reply
Anonymous754328
Badges: 8
Rep:
?
#20
Report Thread starter 1 week ago
#20
(Original post by AJ1515)
First of all, congratulations in getting into Oxford! You probably have amazing grades, personal statement and reference!
When it comes to picking a university, don’t worry about the prestige, at the end of the day all that matters is that you’re going to be going to Oxford for 3+ if you choose to accept it. Do you really want to go there or do you want to go to a university that makes you happy? What I’d say is, forget about how prestigious Oxford university is for a minute, and then imagine yourself going there and if you’d like to study there if it wasn’t prestigious. (Personally when it came to picking A levels I picked Maths and Further Maths as they were academic but then dropped them both within the first two weeks of school because academically great or not, I found them either lacking for me or hard, or both!) When you go to a university I feel like pick one that is the best for you, not anyone else. Every student is different, and even if some students are applying for the same course to the same university with the same/similar grades, they will only come from different backgrounds, stages in life or have had totally different experiences in life. Do you want to go to Oxford because you like the course and the societies for example? Then you should go. If you don’t like the course or the university then try to find universities that you like, that have a course you want to do and that has interesting modules or more exams/coursework or is just generally in a good location. (Maybe you want to spend the next 3+ years in Scotland? Or maybe in Northern Ireland or Wales instead?)
There are many factors you can be picky about when choosing a university, so don’t worry about turning down an offer, or not turning down an offer.
Of course, it’ll probably be easier to find a job if you studied in Oxbridge, but do you want the experience of the university or the employability aspects of it?
It varies from person to person!
Just try to ask yourself this: Do I want to study at there for 3+ years of my life and if I don’t are the extra benefits really worth it?
Good luck in your choices!
(Original post by artful_lounger)
Pretty sure that statistically most students at Oxford get a 2:1, so doubt that would be considered "embarrassing". Likewise I think inter-college rivalries are being overblown by those bloggers because they have nothing better to do with their lives than try and be controversial on the internet for some semblance of validation from likes and subscribers/followers/etc.

If you base your decisions on the façade created by people on the internet of their own lives, which is never representative of anything except how they wish to be seen, you will probably make a lot of decisions you regret in your life. Social media (including blogging) is like "reality" TV. It's not real, it's a carefully staged and manufactured persona, crafted to make the person creating it feel better than others while simultaneously seeking validation from those others. There is little point viewing it as anything other than entertainment at best.
Thank you! Yeah I thought a 2.1 was considered good! ( I unfortunately stumbled across Oxford memes on Instagram and there seemed to be all these jokes about how bad a 2.1 is- but it probably is run by some sad people who feel the need to put a distorted image out there) thanks for the reassurance!
1
reply
X

Quick Reply

Attached files
Write a reply...
Reply
new posts
Back
to top
Latest
My Feed

See more of what you like on
The Student Room

You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

Personalise

Which of these would you use to help with making uni decisions?

Webinars (61)
13.09%
Virtual campus tours/open days (108)
23.18%
Live streaming events (43)
9.23%
Online AMAs/guest lectures (45)
9.66%
A uni comparison tool (106)
22.75%
An in-person event when available (103)
22.1%

Watched Threads

View All