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 Post subject: Ahead of the game
PostPosted: Sat Jun 06, 2009 12:57 pm 
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Joined: Fri Aug 10, 2007 10:55 pm
Posts: 78
Can you please help? My husband and I have no experience of university admissions/life/degrees and no qualifications whatsoever although we have three children at grammar school but would like to know what sort of chances our children would have in obtaining a place at a good university. Is the oldboy network still alive and kicking in respect of getting a place at Oxbridge ie. reading Tom Utley's piece he went to the same college as his father did at Cambridge? A friend told me you have to read the right books in order to prepare yourself for the interviews at these unis ... what 'right' books are these? I was obviously reading my Jackie comic in the back row of French at school so can someone please enlighten me so that my 'first' generation may have a crack at the whip!

From a non-educated, oops ill-educated, failed comprehensive oik!


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PostPosted: Sat Jun 06, 2009 1:30 pm 
Quote:
From a non-educated, oops ill-educated, failed comprehensive oik!


Welcome kindred spirit!

The old network does not exist to the same extent. In fact it used to be that virtually all Etonians and Wykemists went to King's College Cambridge and New College Oxford respectively. Nowadays very few apply to these as they feel that they will not get in because off old-school ties being frowned apon.

As for reading, it depends on the subject. If DC wants to study Physics then he/she should be reading articles from eminent scientists, going to lectures at the RI or RS. But that aside general reading of well known works of fiction and poetry may add an advantage. Work experience or voluntary work always looks impressive as does DofE or CCF. Of course none of this is compulsory but would give DC the best chance in a competitive field.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jun 06, 2009 3:58 pm 
The Alumni magazine of my OH's former college at Cambridge always lists the sons and daughters of old students, but also states that these days prospective students rarely reveal this relationship until they have safely secured a place at the college, in the belief that their parent's privileged status will work against them. We haven't tested this out ourselves as the only DC of ours who aspired to Oxbridge wanted to do a particular course only available at Oxford. Personally I believe having had a parent at Ox or Cam might work against a student these days, unless said parent was able to stump up a very large amount of money (at least 6 figures, and maybe 7). I would be very surprised if such a sum was unable to facilitate the entry process provided the student was considered bright enough to complete the course. After all, some students at every university have to get 2.2s and 3rds, so why not earn some useful money for the college from one or two of them.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jun 06, 2009 3:59 pm 
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Joined: Thu Sep 21, 2006 10:43 am
Posts: 118
Hi

Firstly they need as many A stars/ A grades ar GCSE as possible for the top Universities.
I have heard you need 7 or 8 A stars for Oxbridge. I don't know whether this is true.

Extra curricular activities that match the subject they are interested in would be good. Any extra curriculars that show commitment, leadership etc

Anything that gives extra UCAS points such as music grades above grade 6 also drama exams above grade 6.

Duke of Edinburgh is good. Forgive my ignorance Tipsy but I don't know what CCf is!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jun 06, 2009 4:20 pm 
Combined Cadet Force. Not because you want to join the forces but it shows discipline, service and potential leadership which may show a different side to a guy studying partical physics i.e. he's not a geek! :lol:


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 Post subject: Re: Ahead of the game
PostPosted: Sat Jun 06, 2009 6:07 pm 
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Joined: Thu Nov 02, 2006 3:07 pm
Posts: 1149
Location: Finchley - Barnet
Quote:
Fatandfifty wrote:
Can you please help? My husband and I have no experience of university admissions/life/degrees and no qualifications whatsoever although we have three children at grammar school but would like to know what sort of chances our children would have in obtaining a place at a good university. Is the oldboy network still alive and kicking in respect of getting a place at Oxbridge ie. reading Tom Utley's piece he went to the same college as his father did at Cambridge? A friend told me you have to read the right books in order to prepare yourself for the interviews at these unis ... what 'right' books are these? I was obviously reading my Jackie comic in the back row of French at school so can someone please enlighten me so that my 'first' generation may have a crack at the whip!


If that was the case then neither my brother nor myself would have been through Cambridge, given that we are Greek peasants! More interestingly Cambridge and Oxford do not co-ordinate admissions as I got an offer from both places at the time (All peasants in Greece were very impressed and we had an excellent harvest that year!) I doubt whether this will cut any ice with the admissions tutors in the case my kid ever decides to try for Cambridge

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jun 06, 2009 6:11 pm 
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Joined: Thu Nov 02, 2006 3:07 pm
Posts: 1149
Location: Finchley - Barnet
T.i.p.s.y wrote:
Combined Cadet Force. Not because you want to join the forces but it shows discipline, service and potential leadership which may show a different side to a guy studying partical physics i.e. he's not a geek! :lol:


Actually this cuts both ways as many of the academics in Cambridge (at least the ones I know and speak with, which may suggest a seection bias) are very liberal and would think of any army like activities as a damning characteristic on someone's upbringing

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jun 06, 2009 6:29 pm 
Yes well those liberals are happy to take, take, take and offer no service to others! :roll:


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jun 06, 2009 7:32 pm 
T.i.p.s.y wrote:
Yes well those liberals are happy to take, take, take and offer no service to others! :roll:


Well said, Tipsy. No doubt they are busy today despising the attitudes of the very old men who have gone over to Normandy for the D Day Landings anniversary, and the very moving way they have been speaking about their fallen comrades. The CCF provides a fine training for the kind of young people we need today, when the qualities of self discipline and service are considered laughable in many quarters.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jun 06, 2009 7:42 pm 
Regardless of what we think of politicians I thought it was appalling booing Brown at the DD day service. It was not the time or the place and showed utter disrespect for the dead and the veterans! :evil:


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