To be honest I still think that the LLM is not as competitive as they make out to be, but I assume that is because I have had personal experiences that tell me so. For example, both me and my colleague got into the LLM programme, although neither of us had a first. My colleague was even quite far away from it. Meanwhile the best student in my class in high school got into the final round for admission into Cambridge's undergrad program in law, but was ultimately not selected, even though his grades were ridiculously high (a minimum of 90% average on all his courses, mind you in my country our curriculum constists out of 12 courses, so that means he scored equally well on maths as on French or sports, crazy). He ultimately chose not to study law and went for a degree in civil engineering, and is still way more talented than I am.
I mean, by all means, let's pat ourselves on the back that we made it into Cambridge, but all I am saying is that we should keep our heads level and realize that this is just an LLM program.
I don’t think the academic rigour of a high school curriculum can be compared to a university’s, but ok
I agree, and also I’d very interested to know why they’re accepting people with 2:1’s, if what Ribben is saying is true, when I know people who Cambridge have rejected with firsts, eg someone who has a first and did a training contract at a magic circle firm... my understanding is if you do not have a first you will not be admitted. I feel a freedom of information request coming on to find out if this is true.
Cambridge does accept students with a 2.1 for the LLM. I know that for a fact. However, most of these students, are actually international students and for most of these, they are actually the top of their classes. There are universities that do not hand out first class degrees especially elsewhere in the world. So Cambridge always asks the referee to indicate the class rank and in such instances where the candidate has a 2.1 but is first in the class and has considerable work experience and a good CV, Cambridge will bend and admit them. It is the reasonable thing to do. Those students are not in the same place as those from the developed world and common sense dictates that this be considered. Interestingly, those students usually do perform very well at Cambridge which speaks of their potential.
Having a first does not guarantee you entry into Cambridge. A 2.1 with, say, 3 years experience will most likely get in while a 1st with no experience may be rejected. At the end of the day, Cambridge is admitting those who will flourish on and with the LLM and not just a bright kid pursuing another degree.
Also, remember those essays are important. If you cannot articulate your career path and cannot tell how that LLM will benefit you, not even a 1st will get you in. The admissions team looks at your application as a whole. Same thing with Harvard and Oxford both of which my BFF got in with a 2.1. A very good CV and references and good application will get you in anywhere in the world.
But make no mistake. The LLM programme statistics speak for themselves when it comes to how competitive it is to get in. The Faculty gets over 1000 applications for just 150 spaces.
And those talking about enforcement, whenever a student is admitted without the 1st in Cambridge, the Faculty justifies that admission to GAO and this is allowed.
PS: The exceptions to the 1st will be less than 10 in every admissions process of 150 applicants.
[Edited by LegalLife on Mar 19, 2018]