The Student Room Group

manchester or imperial??

i’m a year 13 student from london, and i’ve gotten offers from edinburgh, manchester and imperial to study physics.
edinburgh has the lowest offer and it doesn’t offer a year abroad (the others are physics with year abroad programs), so i’ve put it as my insurance.
however, i’m completely torn between the other two universities.
i’ve already firmed manchester because i had a spur of the moment clarity but now i’m really confused whether or not i made the right decision, and it hasn’t been 14 days yet so i think i can still change my mind and take back the imperial offer.
on one hand, nothing can really beat imperial - its so well known everywhere and i know just saying i studied there will open doors for me, and i’ll be amongst some of the smartest minds in my generation.
however, i already live in london, meaning that i would live at home for university seeing as there would be no point staying in the imperial halls that are just down the road from where i live. that’s something that i really didn’t want to do as feel a bit claustrophobic at home and want to get away for uni. also, i’m not sure if i’m smart enough to cut it at imperial - i’ve heard the pressure is terrible and im not sure how properly serious i am about being an academic (which imperial would deffo help me with). also, living in london (even at home) is so expensive, especially for travel and going out.
at manchester though, i could move away to this incredibly cool city at a very good university for physics, and it would be much cheaper to live as a student. the thought of going excites me so much, but it’s not imperial.
i would feel a little bit selfish if i didn’t go imperial, but i just don’t find myself excited about it all.
does anyone have any advice???
Reply 1
Original post by ninacorbet
i’m a year 13 student from london, and i’ve gotten offers from edinburgh, manchester and imperial to study physics.
edinburgh has the lowest offer and it doesn’t offer a year abroad (the others are physics with year abroad programs), so i’ve put it as my insurance.
however, i’m completely torn between the other two universities.
i’ve already firmed manchester because i had a spur of the moment clarity but now i’m really confused whether or not i made the right decision, and it hasn’t been 14 days yet so i think i can still change my mind and take back the imperial offer.
on one hand, nothing can really beat imperial - its so well known everywhere and i know just saying i studied there will open doors for me, and i’ll be amongst some of the smartest minds in my generation.
however, i already live in london, meaning that i would live at home for university seeing as there would be no point staying in the imperial halls that are just down the road from where i live. that’s something that i really didn’t want to do as feel a bit claustrophobic at home and want to get away for uni. also, i’m not sure if i’m smart enough to cut it at imperial - i’ve heard the pressure is terrible and im not sure how properly serious i am about being an academic (which imperial would deffo help me with). also, living in london (even at home) is so expensive, especially for travel and going out.
at manchester though, i could move away to this incredibly cool city at a very good university for physics, and it would be much cheaper to live as a student. the thought of going excites me so much, but it’s not imperial.
i would feel a little bit selfish if i didn’t go imperial, but i just don’t find myself excited about it all.
does anyone have any advice???

also, i’ve heard the social life at imperial take a lot more effort - which would be fine if i didn’t have to live at home. i’m scared that i will have more trouble finding friends at a place that’s already quite known for being less social.
i know manchester isn’t a bad university at all and is very respected for physics, but i also know the name doesn’t carry much weight abroad as imperial does
Hi, I'm currently at Imperial and yes it is a lot of hard work and a lot of late nights completing coursework and studying for very hard exams. But the people are generally very nice, and there is a strong feeling of 'we're all in this together'. In terms of social lofe it does probably take more effort than other unis, but there are so many different people here and so many societies that you're going to find friends. It is harder if you don't live in accom as that is where many peole make a lot of their friends, but it's not impossible. Don't feel selfish though, as at the end of the day if your hearts not in it you're going to really struggle, as the work can at times be overwhelming. Also the physics department is notorious (not in a good way). Read this: https://felixonline.co.uk/issue/1821/news/physics-department-unhelpful-dismissive-and-two-faced-say-students-2 . But also don't take this message as me telling you to not come here. The oppurtunities Imperial provides in terms of careers, extracurriculars, networking etc are esentially unmatched elsewhere. It's really about what career you want to go into - if it's finance or consultancy then I highly recommend Imperial. If not, then Manchester is a very highly regarded university and you're going to love your time there
Reply 3
Original post by RedArrow10
Hi, I'm currently at Imperial and yes it is a lot of hard work and a lot of late nights completing coursework and studying for very hard exams. But the people are generally very nice, and there is a strong feeling of 'we're all in this together'. In terms of social lofe it does probably take more effort than other unis, but there are so many different people here and so many societies that you're going to find friends. It is harder if you don't live in accom as that is where many peole make a lot of their friends, but it's not impossible. Don't feel selfish though, as at the end of the day if your hearts not in it you're going to really struggle, as the work can at times be overwhelming. Also the physics department is notorious (not in a good way). Read this: https://felixonline.co.uk/issue/1821/news/physics-department-unhelpful-dismissive-and-two-faced-say-students-2 . But also don't take this message as me telling you to not come here. The oppurtunities Imperial provides in terms of careers, extracurriculars, networking etc are esentially unmatched elsewhere. It's really about what career you want to go into - if it's finance or consultancy then I highly recommend Imperial. If not, then Manchester is a very highly regarded university and you're going to love your time there


hi, thank you so much for your response. i did visit imperial and the people seemed lovely, so that’s encouraging to hear. although in the future i’d love to work in something relating to astrophysics, for example somewhere like the esa or even nasa!
anyway, thanks for the response it was very useful! :smile:

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