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Oxbridge? Aim high? Lower?

I’m currently in year 12 aso it’s a little early to stress but I don’t want to be panicking next year 💀 my gcse grades were neither extraordinary nor terrible (998776653) with 9 and 7 in English and 5 in maths. I think I want to do history (7) but unsure is the other grades would deter me from going to a top uni 😭 i’ve heard that Cambridge place less stress on gcses than Oxford but still it’d be competing with ppl who have all 9s. I think personal statement and interviews would be no problem and my current subjects I think I could get an A*-A in all 3.

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Original post by Lilifae
I’m currently in year 12 aso it’s a little early to stress but I don’t want to be panicking next year 💀 my gcse grades were neither extraordinary nor terrible (998776653) with 9 and 7 in English and 5 in maths. I think I want to do history (7) but unsure is the other grades would deter me from going to a top uni 😭 i’ve heard that Cambridge place less stress on gcses than Oxford but still it’d be competing with ppl who have all 9s. I think personal statement and interviews would be no problem and my current subjects I think I could get an A*-A in all 3.

dont worry too much about gcses there not a massive concern when appling to these places. Places like oxbridge despite high enetry requirements the hardest part about getting in will be the interviews and it all really comes down to who you are. I was virtually straight nines and am predicted A*A*A and could of pushed the A up to A* but over this year i kind of came to realise that places like oxbridge for me werent very desireable as they werent the best for my course nor did i want to be anything like the people who graduate there. My economics teacher has mates in top investmetn banks and they say the people recruited from oxbridge are like robots just do work and lack social skills. Now this isnt all true and you may be different to me but i had the same idea of going oxbridge but make sure you go to ucas events and visit other unis and look at universit ranking for your subjects because for me for mchanical engineering places like southampton and bristol rank better then oxbridge and have ties with F1 which is what i want to do.

To sum it up dont worry about it now at all have it in your mind with a few other places to go but wait untill ucas exhibitions and visiting other unis and looking into where i best for your course what the area is like where your moing does it have good nightlife which i thought was somewhat important as you are living here for 3-5 years and i dont fancy living around the likes of those who go to cambridge. Dont let me sway you from wantin to go there its excelent if you can but think about these things. hope this helps.
Original post by Lilifae
I’m currently in year 12 aso it’s a little early to stress but I don’t want to be panicking next year 💀 my gcse grades were neither extraordinary nor terrible (998776653) with 9 and 7 in English and 5 in maths. I think I want to do history (7) but unsure is the other grades would deter me from going to a top uni 😭 i’ve heard that Cambridge place less stress on gcses than Oxford but still it’d be competing with ppl who have all 9s. I think personal statement and interviews would be no problem and my current subjects I think I could get an A*-A in all 3.

Go for it. Apply to Cambridge. Good luck
Original post by Lilifae
I’m currently in year 12 aso it’s a little early to stress but I don’t want to be panicking next year 💀 my gcse grades were neither extraordinary nor terrible (998776653) with 9 and 7 in English and 5 in maths. I think I want to do history (7) but unsure is the other grades would deter me from going to a top uni 😭 i’ve heard that Cambridge place less stress on gcses than Oxford but still it’d be competing with ppl who have all 9s. I think personal statement and interviews would be no problem and my current subjects I think I could get an A*-A in all 3.

also i just read something that oxbridge do that is quite smart and make it more equal to get in. essentially if the rest of the poeple in your school were not the brightest and just got 4s,5s, and 6s for all there things and you have finished with one of the higher gcses results in your year then theyll look at that rather then compring you to some monty who has been in private school all his life with 7 8s and 9s. So if you were one of the smartest in your school or you couldnt really name that more poeple smarter then you in your school ( say around the top 10%) you should be fine and gcses wont affect you too much.
Original post by Lilifae
I’m currently in year 12 aso it’s a little early to stress but I don’t want to be panicking next year 💀 my gcse grades were neither extraordinary nor terrible (998776653) with 9 and 7 in English and 5 in maths. I think I want to do history (7) but unsure is the other grades would deter me from going to a top uni 😭 i’ve heard that Cambridge place less stress on gcses than Oxford but still it’d be competing with ppl who have all 9s. I think personal statement and interviews would be no problem and my current subjects I think I could get an A*-A in all 3.


Fwiw, I applied to Cambridge with a mixture of 9s, 8s and 7s and got pooled, so the ‘all 9s student’ is really just a stereotype. Plus, if the GCSE 5s and 3s were in less relevant subjects, you’ll be in an even better position. Best of luck!
Reply 5
'The likes of those that go to Cambridge'. Good to see old stereotypes alive and well on TSR. Every single person I know that went to Cantab is a lovely person. The lads I lived with at Oxford were top boys, and four fifths of them working class like me. Dial down this sort of rhetoric because it is increasingly inaccurate.
Original post by gjd800
'The likes of those that go to Cambridge'. Good to see old stereotypes alive and well on TSR. Every single person I know that went to Cantab is a lovely person. The lads I lived with at Oxford were top boys, and four fifths of them working class like me. Dial down this sort of rhetoric because it is increasingly inaccurate.

the way you speak and refere to the classes system just shows im right. Also the person who was at the ucas exhibitio representing cambridge was one of the biggest snobs ive ever seen. the guy made no eye contact didnt want to be there one bit adn funny enough had an extremely wealthy posh accent. The fact he is the representive at the ucas to try and encourage people to go made me chuckle
Reply 7
Original post by charlie.R.12
the way you speak and refere to the classes system just shows im right. Also the person who was at the ucas exhibitio representing cambridge was one of the biggest snobs ive ever seen. the guy made no eye contact didnt want to be there one bit adn funny enough had an extremely wealthy posh accent. The fact he is the representive at the ucas to try and encourage people to go made me chuckle

No, you are not right. I'm from a south Liverpool council estate and I am twice your age. I write well because a) I am well read and b) well trained. Your condescension is hilarious.
(edited 1 year ago)
Original post by gjd800
No, you are not right. I'm from a south Liverpool council estate and I am twice your age. I write well because a) I am well read and b) well trained. Your condescension is hilarious.


picked one thing i wrote about and ignored the rest also why you 34 on TSR
Original post by _shehryar_
Fwiw, I applied to Cambridge with a mixture of 9s, 8s and 7s and got pooled, so the ‘all 9s student’ is really just a stereotype. Plus, if the GCSE 5s and 3s were in less relevant subjects, you’ll be in an even better position. Best of luck!

Loll this is so true I had straight 9s and A*s in all my subjects, got straight out rejected pre-interview so it really doesn't give you much of an advantage! :frown:

Though this just shows that grades just get you through the door and if you have great passion for your subject then you're as good a candidate as anyone else! Your GCSE's aren't bad at all so work hard this year and see how it goes. Keep an eye out for events and supercurriculars that you could use to boost your PS and take a look at the entrance exams you'll have to sit. Good luck!

Original post by Lilifae
I’m currently in year 12 aso it’s a little early to stress but I don’t want to be panicking next year 💀 my gcse grades were neither extraordinary nor terrible (998776653) with 9 and 7 in English and 5 in maths. I think I want to do history (7) but unsure is the other grades would deter me from going to a top uni 😭 i’ve heard that Cambridge place less stress on gcses than Oxford but still it’d be competing with ppl who have all 9s. I think personal statement and interviews would be no problem and my current subjects I think I could get an A*-A in all 3.
(edited 1 year ago)
Original post by charlie.R.12
picked one thing i wrote about and ignored the rest also why you 34 on TSR

There are many TSR members who are even more ancient than that! :biggrin: They contribute to this site because they want to give the benefit of their knowledge and experience to younger people. Some are teachers, researchers or admissions tutors. It's well worth taking note of what they have to say, even if you decide not to take their advice.

The majority of Cambridge students are down to earth, ordinary folk. They just happen to be clever and ambitious. Nothing wrong with that, is there?
Original post by Lilifae
I’m currently in year 12 aso it’s a little early to stress but I don’t want to be panicking next year 💀 my gcse grades were neither extraordinary nor terrible (998776653) with 9 and 7 in English and 5 in maths. I think I want to do history (7) but unsure is the other grades would deter me from going to a top uni 😭 i’ve heard that Cambridge place less stress on gcses than Oxford but still it’d be competing with ppl who have all 9s. I think personal statement and interviews would be no problem and my current subjects I think I could get an A*-A in all 3.

What exactly do you mean by a "top uni"?
Original post by charlie.R.12
the way you speak and refere to the classes system just shows im right. Also the person who was at the ucas exhibitio representing cambridge was one of the biggest snobs ive ever seen. the guy made no eye contact didnt want to be there one bit adn funny enough had an extremely wealthy posh accent. The fact he is the representive at the ucas to try and encourage people to go made me chuckle

One person does not a university make. Just because this one representative acted snobby in your opinion, would you say that the entire uni is terrible? It's a classic textbook case of inductive reasoning if I ever saw one. It doesn't even sound like this guy did anything wrong; it just feels like a case of nerves or anxiety. Also, I can name five mental disorders off the top of my head where people would be hesitant to make eye contact. For the record, I don't make eye contact or like social events either. That doesn't make me a snob. I find it ironic that you are calling out @gjd800 for stereotyping when you're doing it too.
Original post by Lilifae
I’m currently in year 12 aso it’s a little early to stress but I don’t want to be panicking next year 💀 my gcse grades were neither extraordinary nor terrible (998776653) with 9 and 7 in English and 5 in maths. I think I want to do history (7) but unsure is the other grades would deter me from going to a top uni 😭 i’ve heard that Cambridge place less stress on gcses than Oxford but still it’d be competing with ppl who have all 9s. I think personal statement and interviews would be no problem and my current subjects I think I could get an A*-A in all 3.

Hi! :smile: Oxbridge doesn't really look at GCSE's, they focus on A-levels and interviews more. If your course has any competitive exams, those too. You should look at the module structures for history and see whether it interests you. Each uni has a slightly different way of doing things. (This is one of the main reasons I didn't apply to Oxbridge, even though I had A* in everything.) So look through the course in detail, and don't pressure yourself to make a decision fast. Also look at any placements or year abroad programs if you're interested. Look at which unis align themselves to your future aspirations best. Ultimately, only you can make that choice, and if that's Oxbridge, then so be it, and good luck! :biggrin:
Original post by charlie.R.12
picked one thing i wrote about and ignored the rest also why you 34 on TSR

I hate to break it to you, but like half the people here are 30+ :lol:
Original post by Supermature
There are many TSR members who are even more ancient than that! :biggrin: They contribute to this site because they want to give the benefit of their knowledge and experience to younger people. Some are teachers, researchers or admissions tutors. It's well worth taking note of what they have to say, even if you decide not to take their advice.

The majority of Cambridge students are down to earth, ordinary folk. They just happen to be clever and ambitious. Nothing wrong with that, is there?

i dont know maybe ive seen a different bunch but most of them i come across just think there much better then everyone else when that is virtually never the case. obviously not all are like this but too many are.
Original post by sleep_supremacy
One person does not a university make. Just because this one representative acted snobby in your opinion, would you say that the entire uni is terrible? It's a classic textbook case of inductive reasoning if I ever saw one. It doesn't even sound like this guy did anything wrong; it just feels like a case of nerves or anxiety. Also, I can name five mental disorders off the top of my head where people would be hesitant to make eye contact. For the record, I don't make eye contact or like social events either. That doesn't make me a snob. I find it ironic that you are calling out @gjd800 for stereotyping when you're doing it too.


no the way he was talking was condesending he said do i enter maths competitions i said no he rolled his eyes and said you really need to he fits what i was saying. like i said i know its not all but its a large proportion of the people i met from there are like this but i get it isnt all.
Original post by sleep_supremacy
I hate to break it to you, but like half the people here are 30+ :lol:


i guess i never really realised i spen most my time on here just tryna help people with physics maths or econ homework as i get a bit of revision out of it while helping them
Original post by charlie.R.12
i guess i never really realised i spen most my time on here just tryna help people with physics maths or econ homework as i get a bit of revision out of it while helping them

I suppose that's why. I'm mostly on uni forums, and there's quite a few admissions officers, researchers, current students, past students and academics on there.
Original post by charlie.R.12
no the way he was talking was condesending he said do i enter maths competitions i said no he rolled his eyes and said you really need to he fits what i was saying. like i said i know its not all but its a large proportion of the people i met from there are like this but i get it isnt all.

Yeah, again, one person doesn't define the whole uni, and to play devil's advocate Oxbridge is crazy competitive and most people prepare a laundry list of extracurriculars for it. (Of course, that statement doesn't apply to everyone either, but it's something I've observed.)

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