Does an Oxbridge degree help with graduate employment?

(20 Posts)
colouredcrayons Sat 23-Mar-19 17:16:21

Does it still hold any sway?

Say a 2.1 in History from Bristol vs a 2.1 in History from Oxford.

OP’s posts: |
itssquidstella Sat 23-Mar-19 17:18:11


Arowana Sat 23-Mar-19 17:21:55

I think it does. I got back into work easily after 9 years as a SAHM, and I'm sure my Cambridge degree helped (although obviously I don't know what would have happened otherwise).

GeorgeTheBleeder Sat 23-Mar-19 17:33:21


It doesn't guarantee success in any field. It doesn't guarantee you'll be happy or fulfilled. It won't insure against illness, heartbreak, death.

I'm not sure, in the example you give, that it will make a difference in the year you graduate. But, in decades to come, having Oxford or Cambridge on your CV can help to re-start a career or take a leap in another direction. (It's then that people you know, who don't have Oxbridge degrees, may secretly feel you have an unfair advantage ...)

Lumene Sat 23-Mar-19 17:33:41


BinaryStar Sat 23-Mar-19 17:34:15


Lumene Sat 23-Mar-19 17:34:30

But a 2:1 history from Bristol and good self-knowledge and job hunting techniques will do you just fine.


CostanzaG Sat 23-Mar-19 17:34:35

Depends on the job, sector and organisation tbh.

PurpleDaisies Sat 23-Mar-19 17:35:08

I thought you’d decided oxbridge was “overrated”?

Copperplate Sat 23-Mar-19 17:41:12

You’ve already decided it’s not, according to your other thread.

PS. I used my Oxford graduate reading skills to deduce that.

BubblesBuddy Sat 23-Mar-19 19:00:42

You can be very bright but unemployable! People with few transferable skills won’t be top of the tree, Oxbridge or not. There’s more to getting a job than the degree and it can help in certain fields of work but definitely not in everything. My DD has Oxbridge educated friends and none of them are setting the world on fire. One has just been made redundant. Having said that, they didn’t aspire to anything much either. That’s another aspect of job hunting. What do you actually want?

MaudAndOtherPoems Sun 24-Mar-19 18:38:29

I work for an employer which has laudable diversity policies but seems to recruit disproportionately from Oxbridge so, depending on the field, probably yes.

CountessVonBoobs Sun 24-Mar-19 18:41:56

Yes definitely. A 2:1 from Oxbridge is widely regarded as the equivalent of a 1st from another uni. Many top tier employers recruit almost exclusively from Oxbridge and it always carries a cachet on a CV.

Needmoresleep Sun 24-Mar-19 19:30:49

Based on DS’ experience, I don’t think someone with a good degree from LSE/UCL/Imperial is at any disadvantage over Oxbridge grads with most employers.

Dancingdreamer Mon 25-Mar-19 10:11:35

I think there is still a prestige about an Oxbridge degree with some employers eg big law firms and city institutions but much less than there used to be in the wider world of employment. More employers are hiding the instrution people attended in order to be more inclusive and the advent of more on line aptitude testing etc means that a greater variety of skills are now measured rather then just academic merit. I would also look further then just getting a job and consider career and salary progression.

The Civil Service is full of ex Oxbridge graduates in middle ranking roles earning far less than the consultants working for them who often come from a wider range of academic institutions. Both groups are probably very happy with their career choices so I am not saying one role is better than another. I am just trying to point out that Oxbridge isn’t always everything when it come to longer term careers.

Xenia Tue 26-Mar-19 07:42:02

Yes, (in legal careers and many others), although if you are at one of the top universities and do well at it you can still do well in many careers.

meditrina Tue 26-Mar-19 07:49:42

Graduate unemployment is really, really low from Oxbridge (ditto places like Imperial) so yes, of course it helps.

Whether the individual is happy/fulfilled/successful in their career is not so closely linked. But for foot in the door for first job, it helps

Hollowvictory Tue 26-Mar-19 08:20:13

Although it's not true that a 2:1 from oxbridge is regarded as equivalent to a first from somewhere else, recruiters don't see it like that (I've recruited hundreds of grads)

Tiramisu1 Wed 27-Mar-19 07:07:01

Yes. Definitely Uni rankings matter to employers.

But so is probably any other competitive advantage eg being bilingual etc.

Timeforcuppa Sun 07-Apr-19 11:09:47

I have a degree in history from Oxford smile

Tbh, I don't think it looks better than a 2.1 from other highly ranked universities if you're going into a history related career.

However, many grad schemes may favour Oxbridge students, although as someone else has said UCL/LSE etc will also be in the same league.

I have the prestige from going to Oxford and although I've been successful in my career I don't think where I studied has much to do with it. There have been times when I've really struggled to find suitable employment and occasionally when it may have worked against me! It's a competitive market out there & an Oxbridge degree no longer guarantees a good job like it may have done years ago. It's rather overhyped. But then again it depends on what you're planning to do after your degree.

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