The Student Room Group

Is Oxford worth trying hard to get into?

Obviously Oxford university is always top 3 in the world but I always wonder if it’s actually worth it. I’m aware the workload is crazy, I want to do law and went on a residential to uni of Oxford to experience life as a student and they had already given me an hour podcast and a chunky booklet on the constitution to read and make notes on. All my life everyone has said I’m smart and capable of getting in but I’m never 100% sure. I do relatively well at school ( I always get one of the best grades on exams in my class) and also have many extra-curriculars and super-curriculars but find that I’m often harsh on myself and can breakdown when overwhelmed with schoolwork. Is Oxford actually worth it and what’s the likelihood of me being accepted?
It doesn't hurt trying but there are many excellent universities in the UK too. Don't put too much pressure on yourself trying to get into a specific university.
Do you have particular career ambitions for after you do your law degree? Law (or at least, the bar) is one of the few fields where going to Oxbridge does still seem to hold some sway! It is a lot of very hard work, doing an Oxford degree, but the majority of people swim rather than sink. Almost everyone at Oxford has imposter syndrome (though few talk about it openly), so you'd be in good company in that regard :yes:

It's definitely not the be-all-and-end-all but if you like the collegiate system, the course content and course structure, I'd say it's worth a go :smile:
Original post by janijay
It doesn't hurt trying but there are many excellent universities in the UK too. Don't put too much pressure on yourself trying to get into a specific university.

Thank you for your quick reply, I appreciate it! Your advice has been useful, I’ll try to focus on other universities too. Thank you again
Original post by The_Lonely_Goatherd
Do you have particular career ambitions for after you do your law degree? Law (or at least, the bar) is one of the few fields where going to Oxbridge does still seem to hold some sway! It is a lot of very hard work, doing an Oxford degree, but the majority of people swim rather than sink. Almost everyone at Oxford has imposter syndrome (though few talk about it openly), so you'd be in good company in that regard :yes:

It's definitely not the be-all-and-end-all but if you like the collegiate system, the course content and course structure, I'd say it's worth a go :smile:

Thank you so much for your reply, I really do appreciate it!!! You’ve made me feel much more better overall. After my law degree, I’m leaning towards getting a training contract to become a solicitor or to get a masters in corporate law.
Many do have imposter syndrome, during my residential, all the students there said none of them believed they could get in and even thought they failed their interview.
I’m definitely considering applying a lot more now because I did find it interesting there. I guess everyone has doubts sometimes
Thank you again, I really appreciate it! :smile:
Original post by Greenscholar
Thank you so much for your reply, I really do appreciate it!!! You’ve made me feel much more better overall. After my law degree, I’m leaning towards getting a training contract to become a solicitor or to get a masters in corporate law.
Many do have imposter syndrome, during my residential, all the students there said none of them believed they could get in and even thought they failed their interview.
I’m definitely considering applying a lot more now because I did find it interesting there. I guess everyone has doubts sometimes
Thank you again, I really appreciate it! :smile:

No worries at all! Think of this residential as a taster of what it might be like to study at Oxford. If you're enjoying it - which it seems you are? - then apply! If you hate it, don't apply. If it's somewhere in the middle, then apply anyway, would be my advice, and just see how things go. Either way, as has been said, don't get overattached to the idea of applying. See it more as "if I get in, fantastic: I'll use all my research and residential experience to make an informed decision whether to accept or not. If I get rejected, then **** them :headbang: " :yep: It is natural to have worries and doubts pre-/during application stage, but it's not as huge an extra effort as it might feel like - you'll have to do the LNAT for other good unis too! :yep:
Reply 6
Original post by Greenscholar
Obviously Oxford university is always top 3 in the world but I always wonder if it’s actually worth it. I’m aware the workload is crazy, I want to do law and went on a residential to uni of Oxford to experience life as a student and they had already given me an hour podcast and a chunky booklet on the constitution to read and make notes on. All my life everyone has said I’m smart and capable of getting in but I’m never 100% sure. I do relatively well at school ( I always get one of the best grades on exams in my class) and also have many extra-curriculars and super-curriculars but find that I’m often harsh on myself and can breakdown when overwhelmed with schoolwork. Is Oxford actually worth it and what’s the likelihood of me being accepted?

My daughter is at Oxford and the workload is immense and not just in term time! You spend all your holidays revising and working as you have exams called collections at the start of every term. The tutorial system is fantastic though and the social and networking opportunities are incredible. Anyone can join the Law Society( not just those reading law) and many top city law firms regularly take members out for meals and drinks and give good advice. My daughter was sent a manual with current job details of alumni from her college and was told that she could contact any of them for careers advice. Many of them are in very high profile jobs.

The Oxford experience is amazing. It's not for everyone though. Being bright and having stellar grades is not enough. I'd say you need to be resilient and able to cope with a lot of pressure. The main thing is to exude genuine passion for your subject and to read widely. Truth is, noone can predict whether you'll get in or not. Every year, hundreds of people with perfect profiles " on paper" are rejected.

Is Oxford " worth it" you ask. It must be, otherwise there wouldn't be so many people desperate to get in!!!
Original post by Debs25
My daughter is at Oxford and the workload is immense and not just in term time! You spend all your holidays revising and working as you have exams called collections at the start of every term. The tutorial system is fantastic though and the social and networking opportunities are incredible. Anyone can join the Law Society( not just those reading law) and many top city law firms regularly take members out for meals and drinks and give good advice. My daughter was sent a manual with current job details of alumni from her college and was told that she could contact any of them for careers advice. Many of them are in very high profile jobs.

The Oxford experience is amazing. It's not for everyone though. Being bright and having stellar grades is not enough. I'd say you need to be resilient and able to cope with a lot of pressure. The main thing is to exude genuine passion for your subject and to read widely. Truth is, noone can predict whether you'll get in or not. Every year, hundreds of people with perfect profiles " on paper" are rejected.

Is Oxford " worth it" you ask. It must be, otherwise there wouldn't be so many people desperate to get in!!!


Son worked hard but the holidays are long and he certainly did not spend all of them studying.He loved Oxford despite workload,and actually apart from his final terms he worked a lot less than he did at school.
Reply 8
Original post by Scotney
Son worked hard but the holidays are long and he certainly did not spend all of them studying.He loved Oxford despite workload,and actually apart from his final terms he worked a lot less than he did at school.

Wow! I'm hoping my daughter is able to relax more in the long Summer holiday. I've never seen her work as hard as she's working at the moment! She's certainly working a lot harder than she did at school.
Reply 9
Original post by Greenscholar
Obviously Oxford university is always top 3 in the world but I always wonder if it’s actually worth it. I’m aware the workload is crazy, I want to do law and went on a residential to uni of Oxford to experience life as a student and they had already given me an hour podcast and a chunky booklet on the constitution to read and make notes on. All my life everyone has said I’m smart and capable of getting in but I’m never 100% sure. I do relatively well at school ( I always get one of the best grades on exams in my class) and also have many extra-curriculars and super-curriculars but find that I’m often harsh on myself and can breakdown when overwhelmed with schoolwork. Is Oxford actually worth it and what’s the likelihood of me being accepted?

Good advice on here. The workload does seem intense which is something you could factor into your eventual decision. You could apply and see how it goes.

Bear in mind there are other excellent universities out there but no harm in applying to Oxford too if you think it may be something you want to do.
(edited 1 year ago)
Original post by Greenscholar
Obviously Oxford university is always top 3 in the world but I always wonder if it’s actually worth it. I’m aware the workload is crazy, I want to do law and went on a residential to uni of Oxford to experience life as a student and they had already given me an hour podcast and a chunky booklet on the constitution to read and make notes on. All my life everyone has said I’m smart and capable of getting in but I’m never 100% sure. I do relatively well at school ( I always get one of the best grades on exams in my class) and also have many extra-curriculars and super-curriculars but find that I’m often harsh on myself and can breakdown when overwhelmed with schoolwork. Is Oxford actually worth it and what’s the likelihood of me being accepted?


Heya! Getting into Oxford for Law for sure will not be easy but it's really worth it at the end as 'Oxbridge Law degree' still holds value in Law career sector, especially in bigger Law firms :smile: Oxford would also offer you many opportunities outside of classes! Do research of Oxford as a whole first and see what kind of facilities, societies and etc are there and if they are to your liking!

Regarding application to Oxford, I would recommend checking out this useful Oxbridge Ucas Guide that has top tips for Law entrance exam and interview! If you need more information, you can get into contact with our team and they'll be able to help you further!
Good luck! Let me know if you have any questions!
Milena G.
Oxbridge Mind
Depends on career. For law and Politics if remaining in UK then yes. Most magic circle law firms recruit from Oxbridge as no1 target schools and PPE from their has produced more priministers than any other place.

For investment banking, high Finance, engineering, architecture, medicine, tech etc then any good Russell group university will suffice. Oxbridge 1st or 2.1 will not put you higher than most Russell group universities 1st or 2.1. Academics been equal will then come other factors life internships, etc.

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