Oxford biology

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Vivian wu xinyue
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#1
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#1
Hi, folks! I’m a Chinese and I want to apply for Oxford biology. I heard rumors saying that Oxford’s biology doesn’t like Chinese and our school haven’t had a successful Oxford bio applicant yet(many year we have lots of successful natsci bio applicants). I’m struggling between Oxford and Cambridge. Can somebody who studies in Oxford or know Oxford well tell me is it true that Oxford bio seldom accepts Chinese applicants?What’s more, I got 7 A*, 2A, 2B in gcse and Predicted A*A*A* A in biology,chemistry, psychology and math (A in math, 95 in chemistry and 96 in biology). Does my chance of getting Oxford good?I’m struggling between Cambridge and Oxford, but I really really like Oxford. Thank you very much
Last edited by Vivian wu xinyue; 8 months ago
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cupcake4546
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#2
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#2
go for the one you like more also ur grades are rlly good
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Vivian wu xinyue
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#3
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Thank you so much!!! It’s just my biology teacher keeps saying I will be 99.999% rejected by Oxford’s bio
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Googley_eyes
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#4
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#4
(Original post by Vivian wu xinyue)
Thank you so much!!! It’s just my biology teacher keeps saying I will be 99.999% rejected by Oxford’s bio
No Oxford is apparently the most diverse uni in the UK according to some official poll or whatever. You’ll get in, they want your extra tuition as they don’t make enough money from actual UK students going to a UK uni.

International students are favoured over home students basically anywhere. If you don’t get in try Imperial or KCL, they have a LOT of international students and have an atmosphere and work style (very self led) that works for a lot of international students who just want to study. If you want an all round experience then I’d avoid Imperial definitely, and probably UCL.
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Vivian wu xinyue
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#5
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#5
Hi thank you! I would definitely try IC and UCL. My biology teacher thinks Oxford biology wouldn’t accept Chinese because several years ago a Chinese biologist edited gene of a baby, which was bombarded as a immoral devil. I don’t know whether it’s true, but indeed I have many friends who went to Cambridge’s natsci, but I don’t ever hear from a guy who got into Oxford’s biology. That’s just so weird
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Googley_eyes
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#6
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#6
(Original post by Vivian wu xinyue)
Hi thank you! I would definitely try IC and UCL. My biology teacher thinks Oxford biology wouldn’t accept Chinese because several years ago a Chinese biologist edited gene of a baby, which was bombarded as a immoral devil. I don’t know whether it’s true, but indeed I have many friends who went to Cambridge’s natsci, but I don’t ever hear from a guy who got into Oxford’s biology. That’s just so weird
Loads of Chinese people go to Oxford. That’s literally like one of main countries that sends all their students to the UK for their degree. Just because you don’t know anyone doesn’t mean there aren’t any. Oxford is also VERY woke so anyone not white and not male has a better chance of getting in these days.

Cambridge is harder to get into as they ignore GCSEs mostly and focus on a level grades but as your a level grades are pretty good (average Oxbridge person has I think it’s something like 10-11 A*s but people get in with a lot less if they’re poor or international) but Oxford looks a lot more at GCSEs then have a lower offer generally 1 less A* so easier to get in to.

Just be aware that Oxbridge is VERY different to IC/UCL. Oxbridge focuses on high teaching standards but also expect students to take part in the uni through extracurriculars like sports and societies that can be a hobby or an academic society so you get a more rounded experience.

IC and UCL (but especially IC) has a reputation for being for international students and loners because whilst they do do sports, the uni as a whole is very cold and unsupportive (I got this vibe every time I went for open days and offer holder days and is a big reason why I rejected them). IC just expects students to study and not socialise much, and UCLs actual teaching quality and reputation is declining (again I heard this from current UCL students on my offer holder day and I was holding an unconditional for Biomed).
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flaurie
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#7
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#7
(Original post by Vivian wu xinyue)
Hi thank you! I would definitely try IC and UCL. My biology teacher thinks Oxford biology wouldn’t accept Chinese because several years ago a Chinese biologist edited gene of a baby, which was bombarded as a immoral devil. I don’t know whether it’s true, but indeed I have many friends who went to Cambridge’s natsci, but I don’t ever hear from a guy who got into Oxford’s biology. That’s just so weird
Students from China are on average the second most-admitted to Oxford in recent years (the whole university, couldn't find any specific biological sciences info) - slightly old stats but you get the idea. Your application will be treated the same as any other application
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Vivian wu xinyue
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#8
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#8
(Original post by Googley_eyes)
Loads of Chinese people go to Oxford. That’s literally like one of main countries that sends all their students to the UK for their degree. Just because you don’t know anyone doesn’t mean there aren’t any. Oxford is also VERY woke so anyone not white and not male has a better chance of getting in these days.

Cambridge is harder to get into as they ignore GCSEs mostly and focus on a level grades but as your a level grades are pretty good (average Oxbridge person has I think it’s something like 10-11 A*s but people get in with a lot less if they’re poor or international) but Oxford looks a lot more at GCSEs then have a lower offer generally 1 less A* so easier to get in to.

Just be aware that Oxbridge is VERY different to IC/UCL. Oxbridge focuses on high teaching standards but also expect students to take part in the uni through extracurriculars like sports and societies that can be a hobby or an academic society so you get a more rounded experience.

IC and UCL (but especially IC) has a reputation for being for international students and loners because whilst they do do sports, the uni as a whole is very cold and unsupportive (I got this vibe every time I went for open days and offer holder days and is a big reason why I rejected them). IC just expects students to study and not socialise much, and UCLs actual teaching quality and reputation is declining (again I heard this from current UCL students on my offer holder day and I was holding an unconditional for Biomed).
Wowww congrats!! May I ask about your grades? I think biomed is much harder than biological science hahahaha
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Vivian wu xinyue
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#9
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#9
(Original post by laurawatt)
Students from China are on average the second most-admitted to Oxford in recent years (the whole university, couldn't find any specific biological sciences info) - slightly old stats but you get the idea. Your application will be treated the same as any other application
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Thanks for this information!!🥰🥰🥰
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Googley_eyes
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#10
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#10
(Original post by Vivian wu xinyue)
Wowww congrats!! May I ask about your grades? I think biomed is much harder than biological science hahahaha
Sure. I got 5 9s and 5 8s at GCSE in the first proper 9-1 year but as both are viewed as an A* unis just count 10 A*s. I also did RS a year early and got an A (just missed the A* mark). At a level I was predicted A*A*A the whole time but when it came to cancelled exams my whole biology class was downgraded apart from 1 student (who just so happened to be the teachers pet) so I ended up with A*AA. I’m a bit annoyed that I was downgraded for someone else but as none of us can technically prove it I couldn’t do anything. I got where I wanted to be though so I’m focusing on getting a 1st at uni and forgetting the A level National disaster.
Last edited by Googley_eyes; 8 months ago
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OxFossil
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#11
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#11
(Original post by Googley_eyes)
... Oxford is also VERY woke so anyone not white and not male has a better chance of getting in these days.

Cambridge is harder to get into.... as they ignore GCSEs mostly and focus on a level grades but as your a level grades are pretty good ....
(average Oxbridge person has I think it’s something like 10-11 A*s but people get in with a lot less if they’re poor or international)....

...Oxbridge focuses on high teaching standards but also expect students to take part in the uni through extracurriculars like sports and societies that can be a hobby or an academic society so you get a more rounded experience....
These claims are misleading.

1. In its latest intake, Oxford accepted a marginally lower proportion of BAME (Black and Minority Ethnic) students than the average for the Russell Group universities ( 23.6% versus 23.7%). The proportion of female:male applicants that get accepted is also slightly lower than the average for Russell Group universities overall (54.2% versus 55.1%)
https://www.ox.ac.uk/sites/files/oxf...ort%202019.pdf

2. It is hard to determine the relative ease of getting an offer. Oxford makes offers to 17.8% of applicants. Cambridge makes offers to 24% of applicants. But successful Cambridge students tend to have marginally higher A Level grades (95% versus 90% have A*AA or better). The average successful Oxford applicant has around 8 A*s at GCSE, which rises to 10 for Medicine.

3. In your personal statement and at interview, the expectation is that you will provide some evidence of wider reading in your chosen subject, but "extracurriculars" like sports and hobbies are of no interest. Once admitted, there remains absolutely no interest in whether or not you decide to to engage with societies or sports. It is entirely up to the individual whether they live in the library 24/7 or launch themselves into a career as a world class egg and spoon racer. So long as you do OK in your academics, you're good.

As far as the OP's concern about anti-Chinese bias in the Biological Sciences department is concerned, that something I have never heard before. This FoI request shows that in 2018, 6 of of 81 Chinese national applicants for Biology got offers (7%), and in 2019, 4 out of 51 got offers (8%) The overall success rate for all international applicants for all subjects is around 9%, so it looks like Biology is similar.
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/reque...ons_statist_14
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Vivian wu xinyue
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#12
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#12
(Original post by OxFossil)
These claims are misleading.

1. In its latest intake, Oxford accepted a marginally lower proportion of BAME (Black and Minority Ethnic) students than the average for the Russell Group universities ( 23.6% versus 23.7%). The proportion of female:male applicants that get accepted is also slightly lower than the average for Russell Group universities overall (54.2% versus 55.1%)
https://www.ox.ac.uk/sites/files/oxf...ort%202019.pdf

2. It is hard to determine the relative ease of getting an offer. Oxford makes offers to 17.8% of applicants. Cambridge makes offers to 24% of applicants. But successful Cambridge students tend to have marginally higher A Level grades (95% versus 90% have A*AA or better). The average successful Oxford applicant has around 8 A*s at GCSE, which rises to 10 for Medicine.

3. In your personal statement and at interview, the expectation is that you will provide some evidence of wider reading in your chosen subject, but "extracurriculars" like sports and hobbies are of no interest. Once admitted, there remains absolutely no interest in whether or not you decide to to engage with societies or sports. It is entirely up to the individual whether they live in the library 24/7 or launch themselves into a career as a world class egg and spoon racer. So long as you do OK in your academics, you're good.

As far as the OP's concern about anti-Chinese bias in the Biological Sciences department is concerned, that something I have never heard before. This FoI request shows that in 2018, 6 of of 81 Chinese national applicants for Biology got offers (7%), and in 2019, 4 out of 51 got offers (8%) The overall success rate for all international applicants for all subjects is around 9%, so it looks like Biology is similar.
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/reque...ons_statist_14
Wow thank you so much for sharing this data!!!!
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Vivian wu xinyue
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#13
Report Thread starter 8 months ago
#13
(Original post by OxFossil)
These claims are misleading.

1. In its latest intake, Oxford accepted a marginally lower proportion of BAME (Black and Minority Ethnic) students than the average for the Russell Group universities ( 23.6% versus 23.7%). The proportion of female:male applicants that get accepted is also slightly lower than the average for Russell Group universities overall (54.2% versus 55.1%)
https://www.ox.ac.uk/sites/files/oxf...ort%202019.pdf

2. It is hard to determine the relative ease of getting an offer. Oxford makes offers to 17.8% of applicants. Cambridge makes offers to 24% of applicants. But successful Cambridge students tend to have marginally higher A Level grades (95% versus 90% have A*AA or better). The average successful Oxford applicant has around 8 A*s at GCSE, which rises to 10 for Medicine.

3. In your personal statement and at interview, the expectation is that you will provide some evidence of wider reading in your chosen subject, but "extracurriculars" like sports and hobbies are of no interest. Once admitted, there remains absolutely no interest in whether or not you decide to to engage with societies or sports. It is entirely up to the individual whether they live in the library 24/7 or launch themselves into a career as a world class egg and spoon racer. So long as you do OK in your academics, you're good.

As far as the OP's concern about anti-Chinese bias in the Biological Sciences department is concerned, that something I have never heard before. This FoI request shows that in 2018, 6 of of 81 Chinese national applicants for Biology got offers (7%), and in 2019, 4 out of 51 got offers (8%) The overall success rate for all international applicants for all subjects is around 9%, so it looks like Biology is similar.
https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/reque...ons_statist_14
Wow yours grades are so great, especially for gcse! I heard Oxford emphasizes gcse more than alevel. Anyway congrats!!!
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Reality Check
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#14
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#14
(Original post by laurawatt)
Students from China are on average the second most-admitted to Oxford in recent years (the whole university, couldn't find any specific biological sciences info) - slightly old stats but you get the idea. Your application will be treated the same as any other application
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That's interesting. About 20% of UK applicants are offered a place, which is roughly double the rate for the three other highest represented nationalities who apply.
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