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To think that Oxbridge is overrated?

(118 Posts)
colouredcrayons Sat 23-Mar-19 17:14:50

And we should encourage our children to focus on more than just two top universities. They don’t even give you better careet prospects these days either.

ghostyslovesheets Sat 23-Mar-19 17:18:52

most people do

PurpleDaisies Sat 23-Mar-19 17:19:47


All teenagers will have other choices.

cardibach Sat 23-Mar-19 17:19:56

I don’t think anyone focuses on just two universities - not even those who end up going to them.

xsquared Sat 23-Mar-19 17:20:57

Well, afaik you're only allowed to apply to one or the other, not both.
Most people do encourage their children to look at other options.

Copperplate Sat 23-Mar-19 17:21:01

What is your basis for your opinion? Did you attend either? Do you feel universities should be primarily about getting a job?

idkwhatisgoingon Sat 23-Mar-19 17:31:02

I agree.

I'm currently in sixth form and part of a "programme" that was sold as something to help the "more able" students prepare for university - extra reading, personal statements, applying for competitive courses such as medicine and veterinary medicine. What it actually is, is a group of teachers constantly pushing Oxbridge, and how we should all be going there, and how it's amazing and the only thing we should be considering. Anyone on the programme not wanting to apply there is "spoken to". It's awful.

I know that Oxford and Cambridge are excellent universities. But they are not the only excellent universities, nor do they guarantee anyone employment. They most definitely are overrated.

Bohemond Sat 23-Mar-19 17:42:42

With a degree from Cambridge myself, I would absolutely encourage my child to go for oxbridge if they were capable. At 46, and running a very successful consultancy business with a background in a number of industries, it is still one of the top five reasons I give to hire me. It is an understood commodity and marker of difference in many professions. It may not be right, but it is true.

Mrskeats Sat 23-Mar-19 17:43:55

Overrated? Lol ok.
Ridiculous thread of the day goes to...

BigFatGiant Sat 23-Mar-19 17:45:40

I know a lot of people who turned one or the other down in favour of a different university better for their subject. Likewise I know a lot of people who went there primarily to socialise. I think it ultimately depends on who is teaching the year you attend. Some of the academics there are hardly brilliant.

BigFatGiant Sat 23-Mar-19 17:47:16

@bohemobd aren’t you worried you’ll loose out on a job that way? I went to oxrbidge decades ago doesn’t sound very promising. Even at graduate recruitment level where it’s more relevant actually saying that is a bit off.

CostanzaG Sat 23-Mar-19 17:48:38

I don't know anyone who just focuses on Oxbridge. And I've worked with university applicants for years and years!
They aren't suitable for everyone either.

FormerlyFrikadela01 Sat 23-Mar-19 17:50:11


Really??? You give 20+ year old degree as one if your reasons to hire you. Surely after that amount of time your work should stand on it's own merits, not on the reputation of a university you left 2 decades ago. Unless you were a mature student and it's a pretty decent thing.

BinaryStar Sat 23-Mar-19 17:50:22

Oxbridge isn’t right for everyone but it provides excellent education, a wide variety of extra curricular activities at high levels and acts as a marker of quality when you’ve finished.

And why might a PP’s reacher be pushing applying there? Well a) many quality students self select out of applying which is a big problem and so they will want to understand careful why and see if the reasons are founded and in some cases b) oxbridge admissions is a statistic that is often used as one of the marks of success for a sixth form.

FormerlyFrikadela01 Sat 23-Mar-19 17:50:55

Recent not decent

IHateUncleJamie Sat 23-Mar-19 17:53:14

If you’re bright enough, encouraged to apply by school, and most importantly if you WANT to apply to Oxbridge, why wouldn’t you?

You can apply to 5 unis via UCAS, so as you can’t apply to both Oxford and Cambridge then that still gives you 4 other unis to choose. If you get offers from all 5, there’s nothing to say you have to accept your Oxbridge offer.

Do I think they’re overrated? Definitely not.
Do I think they’re the right unis for all bright students? Also no.

Asdf12345 Sat 23-Mar-19 17:57:34

Certainly my peers who went to oxford claim it has got them far further than anything else on their cv and was usually a talking point at interviews about where then went and who they knew. Given I still have to work and they don’t I am inclined to suspect it may have done them some good (I went to a less prestigious ancient university).

aidelmaidel Sat 23-Mar-19 18:01:31

I think university is mostly wasted on undergrads. Oxford taught me a variety of things that have come in useful later, largely a sense of entitlement and the ability to teach myself pretty much anything given a reading list and occasional access to an expert, but not sure all that was worth the stress through sixth form. One could have got that at graduate level studies as well.

Mmmmbrekkie Sat 23-Mar-19 18:01:57

*And we should encourage our children to focus on more than just two top universities. *

What planet are you on?
Most do

Sigh81 Sat 23-Mar-19 18:09:29

Cambridge grad here. But in a well-paid industry with a bunch of people from other universities (mostly LSE, Imperial, Warwick, UCL though - we're getting better at recruiting from a range of unis but progress is slow!)

And am in my early 30s, considered pretty successful and I never use it as a 'top 5' selling point: have more relevant, recent experience that is a better indicator of how competent I am than where I went to uni! Unless you're running a consultancy helping people get into Oxbridge or similar, I fail to see the relevance?

sailorsdelight Sat 23-Mar-19 18:18:26

Agreed - I tuned down a place at Oxbridge and went to a ‘lesser’ uni for the course combination I wanted and because I found the whole process incredibly patronising and snobbish towards me, a WC candidate. I was smart enough to get in but lacked the other extra curricular activities that many WC don’t have as I didn’t play an instrument, sail, do some amazing gap year, do the DOE and so on. It was made clear to me that they’d be doing me a ‘favour’ Overlooking this. And I thought F -you! I have 4 other unis to choose from who want me, will help me financially and understand I’ll need to work to support myself let alone to pay for bloody exam robes and May balls! Don’t regret it one bit.

Applesbananaspears Sat 23-Mar-19 18:23:10

I think in certain professions an Oxbridge degree will open initial doors and will certainly open up opportunities and connections. Top law / accountancy / banking roles will very much be easier to get onto as a grad. Not because the candidates are necessarily better but recruiters with 1000 applications have to whittle them down somehow and an Oxbridge degree is one way of putting you further ahead.

If my child was Oxbridge material I’d certainly strongly encourage them in that direction. However, given none of them are I will not have the opportunity to do so

Copperplate Sat 23-Mar-19 18:31:42

sailors, I went to Oxford, and am working class, and at interview no one had the remotest interest in my hobbies — my non-existent sailing experience/viola grade/gap year or DoE (I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t have even known what that was then, and I had never met anyone who’d taken a gap year and gone harassing lepers in Baltistan) — or indeed in anything other than my subject. And my college was generous with the hardship fund, and I always worked in the vac.

VirginiaWolfHall Sat 23-Mar-19 18:39:32

Dd1’s school organised a trip to Oxford Uni for the ‘more able’ year 10s. Why the f they are doing it in Y10 seems madness to me. Reeks of pressurisation and at the same time ‘pigeon holing’ at far too early a stage in their school careers.

Luckily dd1 (who didn’t get asked) has absolutely zero interest in going for Oxbridge! grin

FunkyKingston Sat 23-Mar-19 18:42:39

Okay op which college did you or your offspring fail to get accepted by?

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