How hard is it to get a first?

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SophistiCat
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Just wondering... obviously it depends on the degree and such but generally- how much harder is it to get a first than a 2:1?
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Sophdoph
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I think it's a big jump..there seems to be a magical hurdle you have to cross to get to a 1st. Most people here I know have got 2.1's in things but 1st seem difficult even if it's only just 5% more.
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LostRiot
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i'm doing engineering, and my tutor said that your're likely to get a first if in every lecture you understand virtually everything first time.
I guess if you can do that then you can answer the most difficult exam questions because you can actually figure new stuff out in the exam rather than repeating what you already know.
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kingslaw
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(Original post by SophistiCat)
Just wondering... obviously it depends on the degree and such but generally- how much harder is it to get a first than a 2:1?
Difficult (for Law). You must be absolutely perfect in the correctness you're answer, no mistakes of fact, no irrelevant information. You also must show evidence of wider reading somehow. Even then, you're only scraping a first by 1-4%. Anything above 75% and you need some sort of 'original idea'. I think they're the two most important aspects, the ones which will grab the tutors attention. Good structure also helps.
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fishpaste
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In maths you just answer enough questions to alpha standard. Dunno how much harder it is than getting a first. Seems like everybody in the second year at my college got one though.
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d750
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Being original is the most important thing for an arts subject, I think. But it's very hard to quantify what precisely is needed for a first. In theory, though, it shouldn't be possible to get one by just knowing your course backwards and forwards - there does need to be something more.
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kingslaw
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My tactic is quote a couple of academcs...then beat them down with a stick
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AT82
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Out of my course there is 70 people, 5 will on an average get a first and I am not one of them .

The university grading system is not linear like A level/GCSEs, its much harder to get 69% than say 60%. The difference in grades could be worth at least two weeks solid extra work in one assignment. In general for my course it seems to work roughly like this depending on the student:

40% pass - 15 hours work on assignment
50% pass - 25 hours on assignment
60% pass 50 hours on assignment
70% pass 80 hours on assignment
80% pass 100 hours on assignment.

Of course the above varies and is only used as a very rough guide so you can get a rough idea how much harder it is to get the higher grades.
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trouttrout
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I'd say a big jump. we got told that form the lecture notes we are given, we could pass exams with 100% potentially, but with the set essays, we wouldl only get a 2.1. Reason ebing, extra reading is required to get a first.
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trev
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It would be hard no matter what degree classification you want to aim for.
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an Siarach
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(Original post by SophistiCat)
Just wondering... obviously it depends on the degree and such but generally- how much harder is it to get a first than a 2:1?
Very hard at most universities; laughably easy if you go to Warwick.
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d750
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(Original post by trev)
It would be hard no matter what degree classification you want to aim for.
? Not really. You could always aim for a third.
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kingslaw
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(Original post by an Siarach)
Very hard at most universities; laughably easy if you go to Warwick.
Ooooohhhh....contraversial.

One way to tell, find out who their moderators are. Given its a 60's uni, they may share their moderators with other 60's universities. And guess who benefits most from that arrangement?!
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Comp_Genius
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(Original post by an Siarach)
Very hard at most universities; laughably easy if you go to Warwick.
hey they are at top five for maths and physics :mad:
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tomcoolinguk
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(Original post by an Siarach)
Very hard at most universities; laughably easy if you go to Warwick.
Based on what I know this is so true! The hardest unis to get firsts in are meant to be UCL/LSE/Bristol etc, because they generally have the same moderating standards as Oxbridge but not as good facilities. This might be wrong though
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hallucination
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If you're asking how hard it is, I don't think you're going to get one.
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kingslaw
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(Original post by tomcoolinguk)
Based on what I know this is so true! The hardest unis to get firsts in are meant to be UCL/LSE/Bristol etc, because they generally have the same moderating standards as Oxbridge but not as good facilities. This might be wrong though
It changes between courses. Depends how strong each different department is. It can even change between different modules on the same course.

You'd be surprised at the number of universities that share the same moderators. From what my tutor told me, most of the Russell Group uni's have the same moderators.
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Muse
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(Original post by kingslaw)
You'd be surprised at the number of universities that share the same moderators. From what my tutor told me, most of the Russell Group uni's have the same moderators.
Yeah I've heard that too. Also, When we had pass/fail and distinction vivas for our first year exams, one of the external examiners was from oxford and the other was from UoL. They seem to do a lot of swapping around with academics as far as exams go.
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The Messiah
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A friend of mine who left LSE last year informed me that a 1st class requires at least 70 hours a week of solid work. and if u can match this, a first class shouldn't be too far-fetched. and also loads of extra material,, i.e reading... your tutors should be to guiable de you on the lonely path to a 1st class degree.

peace
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TheWolf
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(Original post by The Messiah)
A friend of mine who left LSE last year informed me that a 1st class requires at least 70 hours a week of solid work. and if u can match this, a first class shouldn't be too far-fetched. and also loads of extra material,, i.e reading... your tutors should be to guiable de you on the lonely path to a 1st class degree.

peace
70 hours a week?! :eek:
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