Non Oxbridge early application - good, bad or neutral?

(159 Posts)
GnomeDePlume Wed 13-Sep-17 21:57:51

DD has asked me to ask this of you wise folk.

DD is applying to Russell Group universities but not Oxford/Cambridge. If her application goes in early is that an advantage or is there a risk that her preferred unis will assume she is applying to Oxford/Cambridge and discount her application?

She is applying for physics/chemistry subjects and is predicted A*AAA.

Any advice please?

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titchy Wed 13-Sep-17 22:36:37

They'll probably assume she's anOxbridge applicant but it shouldn't make any difference to her offers.

OnlyTeaForMe Wed 13-Sep-17 23:27:48

I tend to think earlier the better. They start making offers as soon as they receive applications so it would be great to have a clutch of offers by Christmas and know what you're aiming for?

inchyrablue Wed 13-Sep-17 23:30:43

DD is applying for similar and many of the interview. The sooner you have the interview the sooner you are likely (or not) to receive an offer, which may make for easier decision making. It will vary by institution though I'd think.

GnomeDePlume Thu 14-Sep-17 05:40:28

Thank you. She was a bit uncertain because her school is wanting all Russell Group applications to be done at the same time as the Oxbridge ones which made her nervous of how her Russell Group non-Oxbridge application would be perceived.

Than k you all, I can set her mind at rest!

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NewDaddie Thu 14-Sep-17 07:15:48

I thought it was good for your applications to be applying to oxbridge even if u didn't manage to get in. But this was over 15 years ago so maybe I'm talking out of my arse. And at that time universities could actually see your list of chosen institutions too (so I was told).

SoupDragon Thu 14-Sep-17 07:29:35

DS's school (independent if it makes any difference) do all their applications early. I think the reasons were as per a PP - offers come in early and you can focus on study with the applications all done and dusted.


Eastpoint Thu 14-Sep-17 07:36:25

If her application is ready it's better to submit it as then it's done & she can get on with her work this term. Dd applied 2 years ago & had some offers within 48 hours of her application going in iirc which gave her a confidence boost. Her Edinburgh offer was the last to come in.

GnomeDePlume Thu 14-Sep-17 08:35:38

DD's school is the opposite of independent (academy trust has recently thrown in the towel and handed schools back but that is another story!)

DD doesnt want to apply to Oxbridge as they dont offer the course she wants to do.

Interesting about how quickly offers can come back.

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senua Thu 14-Sep-17 08:47:07

She was a bit uncertain because her school is wanting all Russell Group applications to be done at the same time as the Oxbridge ones

But isn't that an internal thing. She can do 99.99% of the application, including the school doing their bit, but isn't it down to her when to finally hit the 'send' button?

Is it still the situation that you can send in the different applications on different dates so she could sent off her Ox/Cam application before 15th Oct and the others after. What I'm saying is that the date the non-Oxbridge receives the application doesn't actually prove anything re Oxbridge or not; it may imply but does not prove.

senua Thu 14-Sep-17 08:48:28

DD doesn't want to apply to Oxbridge as they don't offer the course she wants to do.

Surely the RG will know that, won't they?

titchy Thu 14-Sep-17 09:00:15

Senua they will know Oxford doesn't offer the same course but they might think they're and they're course are a reserve choice. Regardless it won't matter.

titchy Thu 14-Sep-17 09:00:49

And no just to be clear they won't see the other places or courses applied for.

chemenger Thu 14-Sep-17 09:04:22

It won't make any difference to the offer, all offers are made on the same basis as long as the application is made before the deadline. Early offers have more choice of offer holder visit dates. That's it really.

OrchardDweller Thu 14-Sep-17 09:08:02

DD didn't apply to Oxbridge and deliberately submitted her form on 16th October. DS, at a different school, didn't submit until late December. This didn't impact the offers he received.

Needmoresleep Thu 14-Sep-17 09:57:57

Well worth getting the application out of the way early. Yr 13 is busy. And hopefully a couple of early offers come in, which takes the pressure off.

You could also leave a couple of choices empty leaving scope to add a more/less ambitious choice before the January deadline.

goodbyestranger Thu 14-Sep-17 10:03:12

It won't make a jot of difference. It's amazing how fast some offers wing back and it's always cheering to get the first offer which is the point of going in early. I'd say the sooner the better, regardless of Oxbridge. Even in the very olden days when the unis could see the names on the form I don't think they cared, despite myths to the contrary. It's not in a university's interests to pass over better applicants in favour of less good ones simply because the former apply to Oxford or Cambridge - the universities aren't that petty!

Gannet123 Thu 14-Sep-17 10:16:37

No difference whatsoever. The only thing is that some institutions may wait a while before starting to offer so a very early application (i.e. Early October) may lead to a longer wait for an offer as the admissions offices are still busy finishing off with 2017 entry.
But honestly we don't care if someone has applied to Oxbridge or not. Lots of excellent people who apply to Oxbridge aren't offered places there but will be brilliant students elsewhere, and (shock,horror) sometimes people with Oxbridge offers turn them down for other institutions which suit them better.

NewDaddie Thu 14-Sep-17 14:54:12

Adding to what @Gannet123 said, oxbridge aren't the top or most popular for every course. In my day, for medicine, integrated courses at big city hospitals especially London were more popular with applicants. I remember Cambridge was not #1 and Oxford not even in the top ten. I think Nottingham is consistently top for Pharmacy and there are others especially with more vocational courses.

Also, I don't think universities have the time or resources to try to 'second guess' applicants preferences (it would need to be a very complicated algorithm/system). I think they would still just offer the best candidates and use waiting lists to manage declines for popular programmes.

One more thing, I think it's more important to word your personal statement so that you don't bias too much towards one of your choices. I know people who took unplanned gap years (before the ucas adjustment system) because they gambled and made it ridiculously obvious what their first choice was.

AtiaoftheJulii Thu 14-Sep-17 18:45:18

What they all said. 5 out of 6 Oxbridge applicants won't get an offer of a place, so the other universities would be cutting off their noses to spite their faces if they discounted everyone they thought might be applying!

Crumbs1 Thu 14-Sep-17 18:46:48

It makes a big difference. Early is good because as offers are made, the number of places remaining reduces.

titchy Thu 14-Sep-17 18:51:04

It makes a big difference. Early is good because as offers are made, the number of places remaining reduces.

Bollocks. Ignore this, places don't run out before January.

GnomeDePlume Thu 14-Sep-17 18:53:42

Thanks all for the advice.

Useful thought about the Personal Statement. Interestingly Bristol's advice is that they recognise that applicants may be looking at more than one science course so dont expect the PS to be very specific.

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NewDaddie Thu 14-Sep-17 20:01:06

Also why Russell group?

It's all about research money and not about undergrad teaching quality (or even research quality).

A lot of the Russell group universities are not far above average. The main thing they have in common is being close to bigger cities, good links/proximity to industry and thus more research funding.

St Andrews, Lancaster and Bath are consistently in, or close to the top 10 for undergrad but aren't in the Russell group. Imo those universities are based in lovely places, are prestigious and have a great uni atmosphere.

GnomeDePlume Thu 14-Sep-17 20:55:19

NewDaddie DD is applying to Russell Group unis for the most part because she wants to study chemical physics with a year in industry. This particular course is not offered by many unis and the majority who offer it are Russell Group and industry connections are important for the placement year.

I think we are visiting pretty much all of the unis offering the course.

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