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Thread: Reasons to re-think ANU.

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    Reasons to re-think ANU.

    I was an ANU graduate some years ago and have since ended up returning to study at another Go8 University, far far way from Canberra. I happened to look at this forum, saw a couple of 'halp I'm stuck at unilodge' posts, and thought I'd share my thoughts.

    Yes I'm bitter.

    ANU does a pretty good job selling itself but for students who have the potential to get into other top universities, I'd like to offer some counterpoints.

    1. Canberra is not a normal city and does not have a normal job market.

    Canberra is a government town period. The job opportunities on offer, and opportunities to get 'experience', are limited compared to Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane or Perth because of that.

    There are minimal opportunities to get federal government jobs after you graduate aside from formal graduate programs, and you're competing with the entire country when applying for those programs.

    So being in Canberra doesn't offer any advantage in getting into the APS because you're applying for your first job via a nationally advertized grad intake, but it does remove you from the opportunities present in real cities, particularly Sydney or Melbourne.
    Canberra doesn’t have a plethora of small and medium sized firms that might take on a single grad (or student for work experience), and corporate offices in Canberra are often staffed via transfers from interstate, there is actually very little ground level recruitment in Canberra, but there are TWO decent sized universities churning out grads.

    If you're not gunning for the federal government, and honestly even potentially if you are, moving to Canberra results in far less opportunities for relevant work experience and actual work because the local job market is dominated by monolithic government departments with highly formal and centralized recruitment processes and the private sector is tiny and much of it is similarly bad, where it hires locally at all.

    You can call a small law firm, accounting firm, or engineering consultancy up, send your resume and actually have a shot at getting a job, (as a student while studying, or a grad) but you'll find a lot more such firms in real cities than in Canberra.


    2. ANU doesn't give a damn about undergrads.

    The facilities at ANU are terrible compared to other comparable universities. The IT infrastructure is complete shit, at least when I was there the printers constantly jammed and the lazy IT staff refused to actively monitor them remotely and would have a go at students for not logging jobs fast enough when things (regularly) broke. I don't even know why they jammed, it doesn't happen where I am now.

    ANU is roughly 50% postgrad, it was created as a research institution, it derives its prestige from research. As an undergrad, you are there so a decent part of the fees you pay can go toward that research, and the quality of your education and your university experience comes dead last.
    While this is true to some extent for other Go8 Universities, Universities like UMelb, USyd or UQ are also (rightly or wrongly) where the next generation of their state's social elite are nurtured, and are the most 'esteemed' source of grads for professional firms in the cities where they are located – they have some real purpose beyond research. ANU doesn't.

    ANU is in reality a world class research institution with a teachers college attached, and the cuts that have been made over the past few years should make it pretty clear what the priorities are.

    (Canberra's major employers don't care that you went to ANU either and in fact the Australian Public Service counts an 85% from UC or UWS the same as an 85% from ANU, they don't care about the uni, but you will still get marked harder. Meanwhile a Law Degree from USyd actually is worth more than one from UWS.)


    3. ANU is small.

    This may be seen as an advantage, but when you're at a uni with 55,000 students as opposed to 20,000, there are that many more people who're likely to be interested in any given hobby, political philosophy, or sport, especially when the undergrad numbers are actually more like 10k vs 40k.

    A club/society focused on a niche hobby or topic with 5 active members is one thing, one with 20 is quite another. Where I am now there are active clubs devoted to gaming, weight lifting, mountaineering, various sports, and a whole host of other things.
    In fact here there are something like six separate Engineering Students Societies covering every major discipline of Engineering that all run their own events (sometimes in conjunction each other) and which all run numerous networking/industry-nights throughout the year, other subject areas are similarly organized with large and diverse clubs/societies.

    ANU can't hold a candle to the sort of student life that exists at the larger Go8 institutions.


    4. Canberra is cliquey and you're an outsider.

    This isn't an issue so much if you get into one of the (real) colleges, but if you move from interstate and end up at Unilodge or elsewhere, you're going to find out how shit Canberra can be.
    The townie kids often spend most of their undergrad hanging out with their friends from High School and College (year 11/12), and those living in the actual colleges (bruce, johns, etc) already have enormous social networks by virtue of that.

    The actual proportion of people at ANU who aren't pre-occupied with their on-campus or pre-uni social lives is small compared to other uni's, and given the size of the uni the absolute numbers are even smaller, if you're coming from interstate and don't end up in a College you'll likely find it quite hard to make friends.

    Canberra more broadly is cliquey and insular, it has a fairly transient population, people who move there for government jobs do not give a damn about socializing with 'the likes of you' unless you have something specifically in common (working at the same place, some kind of professional interest, blood relations, etc), Canberra simply does not have the normal social arrangements of a city and there really are people around who work on the basis of “It's not worth me wasting time socializing with someone of a lesser APS classification than me”. University is actually the best opportunity you will ever get to make new friends in Canberra because people in general are so insular there, but ANU is worse than almost any other Go8 University that you could choose when it comes to the opportunities for socializing.


    The only, ONLY thing ANU really truly offers to an undergrad that you generally can't get elsewhere is a somewhat affordable on-campus experience. Living on campus definitely can be worth it, but that's honestly the only reason you should really consider moving to Canberra from another major city, almost everything else is a downside career-wise and socially.

    ANU has for a very long time now played a game of bait and switch with the accommodation guarantee, as by the time accommodation offers come out you're already committed to ANU without much time to arrange alternative accommodation – thus you end up stuck at unilodge for a year.

    It's not so helpful to people from NSW, but in the case of anyone looking at going to ANU for the college experience from other states, I would strongly suggest putting in a VTAC/QTAC/SATAC application to your preferred local uni alongside your UAC application, as the systems are independent and you'll end up with two offers, then if ANU screws you on accommodation and shunts you to unilodge you have another option.
    Last edited by Dichromate; 14 Aug 2015 at 7:18 PM.
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    Re: Reasons to re-think ANU.

    This is a quality post.

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    Re: Reasons to re-think ANU.

    This is awesome. I really appreciate this post and I'm sure others will as well. I wish there were more brutally honest posts like these about other unis as well.
    2015 HSC: English Adv, Mathematics, Business Studies, Biology, Multimedia.

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    Re: Reasons to re-think ANU.

    Godspeed Dichromate, you're doing good work.
    Dichromate and sy37 like this.
    Ex-troll, ex-big time BoSer, ex-solicitor, current angryish, olderish guy shouting rude things at young kids.

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    Re: Reasons to re-think ANU.

    How about graduate programs like med at ANU?

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    Re: Reasons to re-think ANU.

    Quote Originally Posted by paragonvex View Post
    How about graduate programs like med at ANU?
    I have no idea how medicine in particular compares with other uni's. Given medicine is basically the only degree that comes close to guaranteeing a job on graduation (at least for domestic students) I don't think it matters as much. Personally I'd go almost anywhere else because Canberra is a terrible place to live, but it's not the same as going to ANU for undergrad.

    Also for a prospective PhD student it might be a decent choice, but people who are actually looking at doing a PhD probably have a better idea about their field and can weigh the pros and cons.

    Where ANU is a terrible choice, basically a trap, is for school leavers who just want to go to uni then get a job, because it masquerades as "Australia's best University!" when for undergrads it's anything but.

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    Re: Reasons to re-think ANU.

    So, I’m also an ANU alumnus. I think it’s worth spending a few words on my experience, to offer a more balanced perspective. It would be a real shame if the right person were put off from applying because of what they read above!

    First of all, let me say this upfront: ANU isn’t for everyone.

    For better or worse, ANU has been influenced by its origins as a research institution, and its location in Canberra makes for quite a distinctive experience. For some people, like me, it’s hands down the best place in Australia to spend your formative years (personally I couldn’t think of anywhere else in this country I would even consider studying at undergrad level), for others less so. It depends a lot on your goals and the kind of person you are.

    Dichromate wrote a great post. I don’t doubt for a moment the sincerity of his account, and in fact, it’s worthwhile for you, prospective applicant, to understand whether you’re the kind of person who’s at risk of feeling this way about studying at ANU (and living in Canberra), or instead, would have a far more positive experience like my own.

    Off the top of my head, here are some criteria that suggest you may be a good fit:

    a) You wish to study one of ANU’s strengths;
    b) You’re truly intellectual;
    c) You seek international recognition;
    d) You qualify for some scholarship;
    e) You want a government job;
    f) You’re from Canberra;
    g) You’d enjoy living on-campus.

    Let me elaborate a little on each point (this ended up being longer than I thought, so you might want to skip to the sections relevant to you):

    a) There are quite a few subjects that are world-class: political science and IR, Asian languages, philosophy, computer science (for AI/machine learning), and many others. Law is also pretty damn good, easily on a par with USyd/UNSW, and an “undervalued” proposition given its lower cut-off of 97 (about this, remember that ATAR mostly measures demand, and if you’re concerned about “wasting your ATAR” that’s silly, as ANU’s LLB program is tough and achieving good results is a credible enough signal of ability for any top firm to consider you).

    b) By this I don’t mean you’re just smart, and I definitely don’t mean you’re simply capable of getting top grades at school (though the median ATAR of students entering ANU is ~93, the highest in Australia tied with UniMelb, with lots of people having scored well above that). If you’re inquisitive and attracted to the pursuit of knowledge, maybe even bored by schoolwork, then you belong in the PhB program (it’s amazing, look it up if you haven’t heard of it).

    c) Maybe you plan on applying for post-graduate studies at some prestigious institution, or perhaps, you’re an international student returning back home to look for a job in your country. Either way, ANU has a strong reputation overseas that will help advance your career.

    d) ANU awards the National Merit Scholarship to students with an ATAR between 99.75 and 99.85, whereas most Go8 unis don’t offer similar funding. Take advantage of it if your results happen to fall in this bracket. Also, apply for the Tuckwell Scholarship even if you think you don’t stand a chance!

    e) The OP is right that most entry-level intake happens through graduate programs, for which you are indeed competing against the rest of the country. That isn’t to say, however, that there aren’t extra opportunities in Canberra (probably not enough to compensate for the myriad of small private firms in Sydney or Melbourne, but if a government position is your goal then you have slight edge). A couple of these opportunities I’m aware of are the ICT cadetships, which provide work experience and a decent salary while you study, and casual work with the ABS doing data collection. Thanks to its proximity to Parliament House, embassies and such, ANU specifically is able to offer a National Internships Program that places students there for a semester. Slots are limited so it’s competitive, you don’t get paid but receive academic credit for your work, and it’s a unique opportunity to network and get your foot in the door.

    f) How convenient, you have one of our country’s finest tertiary institutions at your doorstep! If you’re a local who made it into ANU, please don’t go to UC (unless it’s for architecture, nursing or education). Canberrans might think it’s OK, but in truth, you’ll be severely limiting your future opportunities (unless you never want to leave Canberra). I mean this in the kindest possible way, as a warning for your own good.

    g) Notice that I kept this for last. Living at a residential college can be a wonderful experience, but I happen to think it’s not a deal-breaker should you end up at UniLodge and miss out on some of the fun. I encourage you to pick a university based on its academic merits – if you disagree, then you’re probably not a good fit for ANU anyway.


    Here are other criteria suggesting you’re probably better off elsewhere (in most cases this means your local Go8 uni):

    a) You don’t care about learning for the sake of learning;
    b) You value “having a good time” more than a solid educational experience;
    c) You can get into (and afford) Oxbridge, HYPSM or other universities of that calibre.

    Again, let’s elaborate (much more briefly this time):

    a) Generally, if you’re going to study a vocational degree, only for the sake of getting a job afterwards, then you’re better off elsewhere. There’s an academic culture that comes from being at a research institution and it’s evident at ANU. Case in point: hardly anyone I know bothered applying for summer internships while there – such mundane considerations weren’t on their mind (for better or worse).

    b) Nothing wrong with this, but you might want to live in a larger city. Canberra isn’t noted for its night-life or for being particularly exciting. It’s a quiet, idyllic place, suited to a balanced routine with a bit of sports, a fair amount of study, and hanging out with friends. Social life can get more intense at the residential colleges, but as I keep saying, if this is your main consideration then you’re better off elsewhere.

    c) Not much to add here. I’ve seen people move after a semester to places like MIT and Yale (for physics), and Imperial (for engineering). Obviously they made the right call. ANU just doesn’t compare with top-tier institutions such as these (but nor does any other Australian university for that matter).


    To finish off, I think it’s worth addressing directly some points raised by Dichromate, comparing them with my own experience:

    “ANU doesn't give a damn about undergrads”

    Through the PhB program, I’ve received one-to-one tutoring from famous academics on topics of my choosing. OK, admittedly, this isn’t the treatment everyone is going to get. Even outside of this, though, I’ve had several classes with less than 10 people… one of which was held in the lecturer’s office! On the other hand, I once took a course offered by the College of Business and Economics (CBE) in a crowded lecture theatre with 200+ students, which was taught atrociously (I wonder if Dichromate studied in the CBE), and first-year courses all across the university have similar numbers. From what I’ve seen, though, this is way more common at other unis which have larger enrolment numbers!

    “ANU is small”

    The size of ANU is an advantage, and I know better than to concede it’s a matter of opinion. Let’s look at enrolments at some of the world’s top institutions: Oxford (22’000 students), Cambridge (20’000 students), Harvard (21’000 students), Yale (12’000 students), Princeton (8’000 students), Stanford (16’000 students), MIT (11’000 students). Compare this to our local unis: ANU (21’000 students), USyd (53’000 students), UNSW (55’000 students), UniMelb (43’000 students). If you think I’m cherry-picking, I’m not – please do your own research (UCL and Berkeley, with 31’000 and 37’000 students respectively, are the only top institutions I know of that get close to Australian numbers). Correlation doesn’t imply causation… but I hope you get the picture. Also, there’s sufficient critical mass at ANU to find clubs and societies of your interest, as well as any sport. A society with 20 active members is one thing, a crowd of 200 is another matter altogether.

    “Canberra is cliquey and you're an outsider.”

    This may be true of Canberra, but not of ANU (at least not in general, though YMMV as the OP’s experience suggests). Students move there from all around the country and the world, looking to make new friends in this unfamiliar place. Living at close quarters facilitates meeting others too. Compare that to UniMelb/USyd/UNSW, where people often live at home and already have well-established networks from high school. Also, on a more personal note, I went to what is arguably the nicest college on campus (no, not telling you which one). Funnily enough, though I enjoyed my time there, I made almost all my friendships through classes and student societies.


    That’s all. I’m genuinely sorry the OP had a poor experience, but it’s not like this for everyone. I hope you, prospective applicant, find this post informative… my fingers are exhausted from all the writing! Apologies for any typos and the messy presentation – these are due to my haste and shouldn’t be attributed to the excellent education I received at ANU.
    Last edited by xixander; 28 Nov 2015 at 7:58 AM.

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    Re: Reasons to re-think ANU.

    Just to comment on some of ixander's points:

    Quote Originally Posted by xixander View Post
    “You wish to study one of ANU’s strengths”
    Sure but this goes for any uni and everything else that’s been said applies.

    “You’re truly intellectual”
    Any Go8 uni will do. ANU isn't special, USyd, Melbourne, UQ, etc are all very academically focused institutions as well, it's not a trade-off, they all do world class research while also being far better for people who actually want jobs after graduating.

    “You seek international recognition”
    Any Go8 uni will do. ANU isn't special, especially compared to USyd, Melbourne and UQ.

    “You qualify for some scholarship”
    Sure, that’s a decent reason if it applies but it doesn’t for the majority of people.

    “You want a government job”
    No, absolutely not. With the exception of a few highly competitive departments like Treasury and DFAT, Federal Government Departments are more or less blind to which University you went to and in a lot of cases to what you studied. They are NOT blind to your marks however. Going to ANU does not make it easier to get into the Australian Public Service.

    ANU marks significantly harder than a university like UC, so in actual fact if you’re gunning for a cushy grad job in a run of the mill department, the best strategy is to go to a 2nd or 3rd rate university, get a HD average and maximize your work experience, extra curriculars and interview skills.

    There is nobody who will ever say “we prefer to hire ANU graduates”, Canberra isn't parochial in that sense - it has "in" and "out" groups but going to a local Uni doesn't automatically give you an advantage.
    You better believe there are firms in Sydney or Brisbane who prefer to hire USyd and UQ graduates respectively though.

    “There are quite a few subjects that are world-class: political science and IR, Asian languages, philosophy, computer science (for AI/machine learning), and many others. Law is also pretty damn good, easily on a par with USyd/UNSW, and an “undervalued” proposition given its lower cut-off of 97 (about this, remember that ATAR mostly measures demand, and if you’re concerned about “wasting your ATAR” that’s silly, as ANU’s LLB program is tough and achieving good results is a credible enough signal of ability for any top firm to consider you).”
    ANU law has always been where people who failed to get into Sydney law went.

    To make a further comment on Law, I don't know if it's changed now but from what I remember ANU’s law school marks extremely hard and scales the hell out of everyone such that they give out only a handful of HDs in each subject. It’s not that ANU Law is more academically rigorous, they will actually adjust people’s marks down to get the distribution they want regardless of how well people did objectively.
    It creates absurd situations where people who are the dux of their graduating cohort only have Distinction averages.

    If you’re applying for jobs with law firms in Canberra this is largely taken into account.
    It is NOT universally taken into account outside of Canberra and while I didn’t study law myself I’m close friends with people who found this out the hard way.

    “c) Maybe you plan on applying for post-graduate studies at some prestigious institution, or perhaps, you’re an international student returning back home to look for a job in your country. Either way, ANU has a strong reputation overseas that will help advance your career.”
    Every Go8 Uni has a strong reputation overseas.

    “f) How convenient, you have one of our country’s finest tertiary institutions at your doorstep! If you’re a local who made it into ANU, please don’t go to UC (unless it’s for architecture, nursing or education). Canberrans might think it’s OK, but in truth, you’ll be severely limiting your future opportunities (unless you never want to leave Canberra). I mean this in the kindest possible way, as a warning for your own good.”
    "unless you never want to leave Canberra" should read “unless you never want to leave Australia”.

    I know of plenty of people who went to UC and who've done just fine, there’s no real advantage to studying many subjects (eg: accounting) at ANU, work experience counts far more than the name on the degree, you’re totally capable of getting into big4 with a degree from UC.
    As I've said you actually have an advantage in getting into the APS if you go to a uni like UC because generally you’ll get higher marks than you would at ANU.

    For something like Law it matters a bit which uni you go to but there are numerous disadvantages to studying law at ANU, some I've mentioned but the broad issues of being stuck in the Canberra job market while studying, and being in Canberra during your final year making it harder to find grad jobs informally via footwork than it'd be in Sydney or Melbourne also apply.

    “g) Notice that I kept this for last. Living at a residential college can be a wonderful experience, but I happen to think it’s not a deal-breaker should you end up at UniLodge and miss out on some of the fun. I encourage you to pick a university based on its academic merits – if you disagree, then you’re probably not a good fit for ANU anyway.”
    For someone from a lower income family, living at B&G or Fenner vs Living at Unilodge is the difference between:

    “Youth allowance covers rent and basic food and I have a casual job so I have money to party, eat out, and save for travel”

    and

    “I need to work regularly regardless of how it impacts my studies because I cannot survive week to week if I don’t”

    “Generally, if you’re going to study a vocational degree, only for the sake of getting a job afterwards, then you’re better off elsewhere.”
    Yes, this exactly, if you want to get a job don’t go to ANU.

    In particular don’t go there and study Law, Engineering or anything from CBE.

    There is no advantage. Hell I could make a whole thread about ANU’s wacky weirdo Engineering school with its majors like “sustainable systems”… who needs old fashion boring stuff like “civil engineering”, “mechanical engineering”, “electrical engineering” or “chemical engineering”? It's the perfect example of ANU's bullshit.

    Many of ANU’s engineering majors are basically traps that exist to shoehorn bright school leavers into research careers instead of the careers as Engineers that they think they’re going into.

    If you want to dick around with photovoltaics in a lab while living on 25k a year, desperately trying to churn out publications, go to ANU and study “sustainable energy systems”. If you want to design/build real renewable energy infrastructure in the real world and have a rewarding and well paying professional career, study Electrical Engineering at a normal engineering school.

    “Through the PhB program….”
    This is the exception that proves the rule.
    The PhB program is exclusive, everyone in it has a cushy scholarship and gets special treatment. Obviously you need to be among the best to get in of course.

    The PhB program does not in any way shape or form reflect the normal undergrad experience at ANU, the PhB program exists to channel the brightest potential researchers ANU can find through their undergrad and directly into postgrad afterwards.
    Far from being evidence that undergrad at ANU can be great, it’s further evidence of ANU’s overwhelming research focus to the exclusion of all else.

    “Compare that to UniMelb/USyd/UNSW, where people often live at home and already have well-established networks from high school.”
    ANU is WAY worse for this than than those universities, I'm saying this based on having gone to ANU and to a major state capital Go8. There is far more of a common university "culture" here than at ANU.
    Last edited by Dichromate; 11 Dec 2015 at 4:33 PM.

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    Re: Reasons to re-think ANU.

    Quote Originally Posted by Rockmelt View Post
    So I'd be moving down from Sydney and was actually considering putting unilodge as a first preference, only because I know so little about any of the colleges. Would this be a really bad idea?
    You pay more for less and have to put up with authoritarian corporate drones running the place.

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    Re: Reasons to re-think ANU.

    bumpity bump

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    Re: Reasons to re-think ANU.

    Just wanted to add, despite not being an ANU student (HS grad 2016), I have many friends who have gone to ANU. I'm advised by almost every single one of them who have looked into other universities (I.e UMelb, Usyd, UNSW) that I should study interstate if I can.

    The only advantage of ANU is the convenience to the ACT students, and possibly a fall-back options of Sydney/Vic students who fail to get into the more selective courses for their state.

    The evidence in this, is the fact that ACT has a 44% HS grade interstate preference rate, and given 70% of those preferences are granted, approximately 30% of ACT students will immediately move to study interstate each year. This number is comparatively very high, given that the interstate migration rate, for example in sydney is less than 10%.

    There is a common perception by prospective Y12 students that ANU is more prestigious, and many are deceived by the "1st in Australia Rank" line (QS Stars have very questionable credibility). This, for the most part comes down to ANU having no competition apart from UC which caters to a very different demographic - and that there is no other Go8 university in the ACT to compare it to. Even with the 'monopoly' of prestige ANU has, they still cannot generate the demand they need for many of their courses to justify selectivity - with the internal transfer requirements being much lower than the ATAR equivalents, and the ATAR requirements being notoriously low across the board.

    It was only until this year that ANU removed academic bonus points from LLB because every man and his dog was getting 5+ bonus points, and in other courses that are considered difficult and selective (I.e Actuarial Science), there is automatic allocation of bonus points for meeting the prerequisite criteria.

    If the ATAR requirement for Act Sci is 95, and by meeting the requirements there is an automatic allocation of 5 bonus points, then technically the ATAR requirement should be 90 without academic bonus points. Compared to UNSW and Macquarie that have entry requirements of 98 and 97.5 respectively with no bonus points. This occurs for nearly every course ANU offers, making the advertised ATAR cut-offs very questionable.

    These are only some of the pet-peeves I've found as a prospective student, and I'm sure there are many more. ANU is one of the worst when it comes to faking selectivity.

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    Re: Reasons to re-think ANU.

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeLloyd View Post
    ANU is one of the worst when it comes to faking selectivity.
    This isn't a very reasonable claim to make! Funny too that you should mention UNSW and Macquarie for comparison, because they do stand out, at least amongst NSW unis, as being up there with "the worst when it comes it comes to faking selectivity."

    Journalists over at the SMH wrote an excellent investigative piece earlier this year, sparking a big debate on the topic. You can find the original article and play around with their data here: http://www.smh.com.au/national/educa...25-gmdvr6.html

    A couple takeaway points:

    1. Over 60% of Macquarie students were admitted with an ATAR below the advertised cutoff. This means that, across the whole university, there's significantly more undergrads who didn't make their cutoff than those who did. It's also the highest proportion amongst the institutions that the SMH has investigated and for which we have concrete data.
    2. Over 90% of LLB students at UNSW were offered a place despite being below the cutoff. That's basically the entire cohort... please stop for a moment to reflect about how crazy it is. Now that we've established this fact, are you still so confident that "every man and his dog" was getting into ANU's LLB program through the backdoor? Although considerably lower than UNSW's, the advertised cutoff at ANU seem far more realistic so it's plausible that it was being met largely (though, of course, not entirely) without bonus points. In fact, I'm not aware of any major drop in enrolments since the bonus scheme was scraped for law (please correct me if you're aware of evidence to the contrary).


    Let's bear in mind, however, the SMH only investigated universities in NSW. That's the only data publicly available, so it's hard for us to conclude much about ANU's admissions when we don't have any concrete numbers on how many people were accepted thanks to the bonus points.

    For what little it's worth, everything I have witnessed first-hand of ANU's administration and how the university is run leads me to believe that they're quite judicious in awarding bonus points. Out of those institutions investigated in the article, USyd gives out the least with ~27% of its admittees being awarded extra points, and I would expect ANU's rates to be quite similar if not lower. The process is also fully transparent, it doesn't apply to degrees such as PhB or R&D, and you can read about it here: http://www.anu.edu.au/study/apply/bonus-points

    That said, it isn't always a bad thing to be awarding bonus points. For example, it may be reasonable to give out some bonus to a promising physicist who completed Ext 2 Maths with strong results, but who would otherwise get rejected due to low grades in HSC English. Also, as a meritocratic society, it's absolutely imperative that we ensure talented individuals who underperformed in high school, due to disadvantaged circumstances, are able reach their full potential through a tertiary education. It really depends on who the points go to, which makes it all the more complicated to judge when at best we're looking at a single figure that doesn't tells us how the allocation of points is distributed (of course, any pretence immediately flies out of the window when you're awarding bonuses indiscriminately like for UNSW's LLB degree or at Macquarie).

    The only advantage of ANU is the convenience to the ACT students, and possibly a fall-back options of Sydney/Vic students who fail to get into the more selective courses for their state.

    The evidence in this, is the fact that ACT has a 44% HS grade interstate preference rate, and given 70% of those preferences are granted, approximately 30% of ACT students will immediately move to study interstate each year. This number is comparatively very high, given that the interstate migration rate, for example in sydney is less than 10%.
    OK, that's a really cool idea for estimating how selective ANU is, in spite of our lack of direct data about this – I'm not as confident as you that it works, though.

    By "interstate migration" do you mean the ABS figure of people who've changed their residential address?

    Because the vast majority of students I know don't bother updating their residence when moving (especially to student accomodation), they just leave it as their parents' place and merely have a different postal address while they're studying. This wouldn't show up in the official population count, and hopefully I don't need to spell out the obvious problem for your argument (but if yours is a statistics specific to high schoolers moving for uni, then there might be something to your claim).

    Fell free to point me to the source of those numbers – I'll gladly look into it 'cause you have piqued my curiosity.
    Last edited by xixander; 16 Oct 2016 at 1:47 AM.

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    Re: Reasons to re-think ANU.

    TL;DR, everything you said isn't true or clearly misinformed.

    Quote Originally Posted by xixander View Post
    This isn't a very reasonable claim to make! Funny too that you should mention UNSW and Macquarie for comparison, because they do stand out, at least amongst NSW unis, as being up there with "the worst when it comes it comes to faking selectivity."
    The example I provided is extremely specific to one type of degree - Bachelor of Actuarial Science. Macquarie is the first university in Australia to offer this, and UNSW has the highest ATAR requirement for the degree in the country.

    I'm not looking at Macquarie as a university, I'm purely looking at Actuarial Science.

    Journalists over at the SMH wrote an excellent investigative piece earlier this year, sparking a big debate on the topic. You can find the original article and play around with their data here: http://www.smh.com.au/national/educa...25-gmdvr6.html
    This article was debunked several times, and many representatives of UNSW / USyd called it out immediately. Usyd and UNSW's response was to publicly disclose the admission statistics by ATAR's. Links:
    http://sydney.edu.au/study/admission...explained.html
    https://www.futurestudents.unsw.edu.au/admission-unsw

    In regards to your statement:

    [*] Over 90% of LLB students at UNSW were offered a place despite being below the cutoff. That's basically the entire cohort... please stop for a moment to reflect about how crazy it is. Now that we've established this fact, are you still so confident that "every man and his dog" was getting into ANU's LLB program through the backdoor? Although considerably lower than UNSW's, the advertised cutoff at ANU seem far more realistic so it's plausible that it was being met largely (though, of course, not entirely) without bonus points. In fact, I'm not aware of any major drop in enrolments since the bonus scheme was scraped for law (please correct me if you're aware of evidence to the contrary).[*][/LIST]
    If you're comparing this to ANU, you have to bear in mind in 2015 ANU had a LLB cutoff of 97. While ANU does not publicly disclose their admission statistics; UNSW's admission cutoff of 99.70
    please stop for a moment to reflect about how crazy it is
    has the following admission numbers for the most common LLB program (Combined Law):

    Median: 98.45
    second quartile: 97.43
    Average Bonus Points: 2.9
    Total offers: 305
    Total offers w/ bonus points: 191
    Minimum ATAR admission: 92.35

    If you draw out this bell curve, you will quickly realize that a massive majority of the LLB students at UNSW are of more selective status than ANU. The bottom 25% of UNSW LLB students (ATAR alone) meet the ANU cutoff. How is this not selective?

    Even other members in other threads here have admitted every man and his dog was getting 5+ bonus points into law last year. They only changed it this year, until then, Law at ANU has been comparatively much easier to get into than UNSW. Nobody with an ATAR of 30 was getting into UNSW LLB, in fact - people with ATAR's under 75 pretty much get rejected from 95% of UNSW courses.

    Check all the degrees, the numbers in the links there will give you a fair idea of how selective these universities are. ANU does not disclose this data, but from what I have read - and people I know in ANU who have scoped out the students, it is heavily implied ANU is far less selective.


    For what little it's worth, everything I have witnessed first-hand of ANU's administration and how the university is run leads me to believe that they're quite judicious in awarding bonus points. Out of those institutions investigated in the article, USyd gives out the least with ~27% of its admittees being awarded extra points,
    Comparing apples to oranges here, just because bonus points are given out - that doesn't mean anything.
    * How much bonus points are you giving out?
    > Usyd does not award academic performance bonus points at all while ANU offers up to 5 bonus points. Personally, I qualify for about 10 bonus points from ANU for my extra-curricular + academic performance. Usyd offer me none, so I can get into a commerce at ANU with an ATAR of 72, or sydney with an ATAR of 95 minimum. Pretty obvious which university gives out more bonus points.
    * What type of bonus points are you giving out?
    > Usyd's bonus points you're reading about in your above statement is due to EAS and EAP. Students who can prove they are disadvantaged and therefore have had their studies adversely affected, can qualify through UAC to gain some bonus points. EAP bonus points are awarded to students who succeed at sports, performance activities or leadership at an elite level. I.e math olympiad. ANU also does this, but ANU also offers academic bonus points, as well as EAP and EAS bonus points in higher quantities. Your statement that:
    and I would expect ANU's rates to be quite similar if not lower.
    is obviously unlikely to be true.


    Also, as a meritocratic society, it's absolutely imperative that we ensure talented individuals who underperformed in high school, due to disadvantaged circumstances, are able reach their full potential through a tertiary education.
    And we should also maintain high standards so that a meritocracy actually exists. If you don't do your homework in school, claim EAS if you're disadvantaged - otherwise, accept the reality that universities judge you by ATAR.

    It really depends on who the points go to, which makes it all the more complicated to judge when at best we're looking at a single figure that doesn't tells us how the allocation of points is distributed (of course, any pretence immediately flies out of the window when you're awarding bonuses indiscriminately like for UNSW's LLB degree
    Go to the UNSW subforum and repeat this - you will get royally roasted by the 99 ATAR students.



    By "interstate migration" do you mean the ABS figure of people who've changed their residential address?
    No, here is the Dep of Educations 2015 report on offer and acceptance trends. https://docs.education.gov.au/system...ces_2015_1.pdf
    On page 12 and 13, you can see the figures for interstate applications by state.

    On page 18, you can see interstate offer rates by state.



    Because the vast majority of students I know don't bother updating their residence when moving (especially to student accomodation), they just leave it as their parents' place and merely have a different postal address while they're studying.
    Most students who move interstate rely on some sort of student allowance that requires you using your residential address so that you can prove you are paying rent in student accommodation. You cannot leave your residential address as your parents to claim any form of government loans/subsidies/wages.

    Fell free to point me to the source of those numbers – I'll gladly look into it 'cause you have piqued my curiosity.
    Nearly everything you said was wrong, or misinformed. Why are you defending ANU so much?
    Last edited by MikeLloyd; 16 Oct 2016 at 7:13 PM.

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    Re: Reasons to re-think ANU.

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeLloyd View Post
    TL;DR, everything you said isn't true or clearly misinformed.
    First of all, I realise you brought up Macquarie and UNSW in the context of a particular degree, but since it was to support a more general comparison about perceived selectivity and bonus points, I don't think I was wrong to single out the issue with the (mis)advertised ATARs at these institutions. I also don't see how my statements were misinformed, nor how the SMH article is factually inaccurate.

    Going back to law degrees, I think we need to distinguish between a few different claims:
    1. UNSW is more selective than ANU;
    2. UNSW's advertised cutoff is inflated;
    3. ANU's advertised cutoff isn't inflated.


    You seem to be focused on 1, which is absolutely not something I was trying to dispute. In fact, I agree that the LLB is more selective at UNSW. Perhaps I should have been more clear, so let me try again.

    I was talking about 2, and I stand by my words in light of those statistics from UNSW's website which you kindly pointed out. They show, for example, that the upper quartile for the LLB is 99.35. While it's a very respectable score – supporting claim 1 – more than twice as many people achieve it than the advertised ATAR – supporting claim 2. (Since reasoning in percentiles can be confusing, proportionally think of this as if the advertised ATAR were 70 but you were letting in people with a score of 35, and remember that it applies to at least 3/4 of the admittees.)

    What I said in defence of 3 is that we don't have any admission data for ANU so we can't draw strong conclusions either way, but all things being equal, I find the advertised ATAR at ANU to be the more believable and realistic figure of the two. Also, I fully agree with you that it's a shame ANU doesn't disclose this information.

    Usyd does not award academic performance bonus points at all while ANU offers up to 5 bonus points.
    Regarding bonus points at USyd... err, yeah, they totally award those.

    They award bonus points for academic performance in certain subjects, pretty much exactly like ANU. Up to 5 points, just like ANU does. Commerce, which you cited, is a rare exception (alongside law and medicine). Again, similar to ANU which doesn't award extra points for its flagship programmes. In their own words, typically faculties at USyd will "consider students who have an ATAR up to 5 ATAR points below the published cut-off in that year". You can read about it here: http://sydney.edu.au/science/fstuden...flexible.shtml

    No, here is the Dep of Educations 2015 report on offer and acceptance trends. https://docs.education.gov.au/system...ces_2015_1.pdf
    On page 12 and 13, you can see the figures for interstate applications by state.

    On page 18, you can see interstate offer rates by state.

    Most students who move interstate rely on some sort of student allowance that requires you using your residential address so that you can prove you are paying rent in student accommodation. You cannot leave your residential address as your parents to claim any form of government loans/subsidies/wages.
    I'm not quite sure about the residency/Centrelink thing, but never mind that now – the DEET report is far more helpful, thanks!

    I've only had a super quick skim over it, though I really don't understand how you reach your conclusion about ANU. Unless I'm reading it incorrectly, that data for ACT/NSW is conflated in the table at pg. 18 which is the one about interstate offer rates. This alone should prevent us from drawing inferences specific to ACT unis, let alone in comparision with NSW.

    Furthermore, unless I'm misreading, it would seem that students from literally everywhere, not just the ACT, are more likely to get rejected in their interstate applications (due to the kind of degrees applicants tend to choose when applying outside of their home states). So you can't use that to support your claim that ANU is less selective, when the converse also holds for students elsewhere applying to the ACT. Look, I've only scratched the surface but I'm rather sceptical already...

    Nearly everything you said was wrong, or misinformed. Why are you defending ANU so much?
    I am not defending ANU per se. For example, I think Dichromate raised some fair criticism in his post and I openly acknowledged it (while, nonetheless, disagreeing on various points). In your case, I am addressing a claim that seems unfair and poorly backed up ("ANU is one of the worst when it comes to faking selectivity").

    The reason I care is that, when I was making the life-changing decision of which university go to, I relied a lot on this forum. Had I read and believed some of the nonsense you wrote, I probably would have avoided ANU altogether, whereas it actually turned out to be great choice for me. That's why.
    Last edited by xixander; 17 Oct 2016 at 7:28 PM.

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    Re: Reasons to re-think ANU.

    Quote Originally Posted by xixander View Post
    First of all, I realise you brought up Macquarie and UNSW in the context of a particular degree, but since it was to support a more general comparison about perceived selectivity and bonus points, I don't think I was wrong to single out the issue with the (mis)advertised ATARs at these institutions. I also don't see how my statements were misinformed, nor how the SMH article is factually inaccurate.

    Going back to law degrees, I think we need to distinguish between a few different claims:
    1. UNSW is more selective than ANU;
    2. UNSW's advertised cutoff is inflated;
    3. ANU's advertised cutoff isn't inflated.


    You seem to be focused on 1, which is absolutely not something I was trying to dispute. In fact, I agree that the LLB is more selective at UNSW. Perhaps I should have been more clear, so let me try again.

    I was talking about 2, and I stand by my words in light of those statistics from UNSW's website which you kindly pointed out. They show, for example, that the upper quartile for the LLB is 99.35. While it's a very respectable score – supporting claim 1 – more than twice as many people achieve it than the advertised ATAR – supporting claim 2. (Since reasoning in percentiles can be confusing, proportionally think of this as if the advertised ATAR were 70 but you were letting in people with a score of 35, and remember that it applies to at least 3/4 of the admittees.)

    What I said in defence of 3 is that we don't have any admission data for ANU so we can't draw strong conclusions either way, but all things being equal, I find the advertised ATAR at ANU to be the more believable and realistic figure of the two. Also, I fully agree with you that it's a shame ANU doesn't disclose this information.



    Regarding bonus points at USyd... err, yeah, they totally award those.

    They award bonus points for academic performance in certain subjects, pretty much exactly like ANU. Up to 5 points, just like ANU does. Commerce, which you cited, is a rare exception (alongside law and medicine). Again, similar to ANU which doesn't award extra points for its flagship programmes. In their own words, typically faculties at USyd will "consider students who have an ATAR up to 5 ATAR points below the published cut-off in that year". You can read about it here: http://sydney.edu.au/science/fstuden...flexible.shtml



    I'm not quite sure about the residency/Centrelink thing, but never mind that now – the DEET report is far more helpful, thanks!

    I've only had a super quick skim over it, though I really don't understand how you reach your conclusion about ANU. Unless I'm reading it incorrectly, that data for ACT/NSW is conflated in the table at pg. 18 which is the one about interstate offer rates. This alone should prevent us from drawing inferences specific to ACT unis, let alone in comparision with NSW.

    Furthermore, unless I'm misreading, it would seem that students from literally everywhere, not just the ACT, are more likely to get rejected in their interstate applications (due to the kind of degrees applicants tend to choose when applying outside of their home states). So you can't use that to support your claim that ANU is less selective, when the converse also holds for students elsewhere applying to the ACT. Look, I've only scratched the surface but I'm rather sceptical already...



    I am not defending ANU per se. For example, I think Dichromate raised some fair criticism in his post and I openly acknowledged it (while, nonetheless, disagreeing on various points). In your case, I am addressing a claim that seems unfair and poorly backed up ("ANU is one of the worst when it comes to faking selectivity").

    The reason I care is that, when I was making the life-changing decision of which university go to, I relied a lot on this forum. Had I read and believed some of the nonsense you wrote, I probably would have avoided ANU altogether, whereas it actually turned out to be great choice for me. That's why.
    Can confirm that posts like this do have a major influence. So please, be mindful.

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    Re: Reasons to re-think ANU.

    Quote Originally Posted by LC14199 View Post
    Can confirm that posts like this do have a major influence. So please, be mindful.
    You're absolutely right. I have been planning on studying at the ANU since year 10, but the 15min I spent reading these posts (not sure why OP even made this thread in the first place? What point are you trying to provie Dichromate? That ANU doesn't deserve its #1 rank?) have influenced me so much to the point I'm willing to give up my scholarship and goals. Can someone who actually studies at ANU give a better perspective?
    I can sit here and make a thread on the reasons to reconsider UNSW/USYD all I want but I know some people on this site endeavour to study at those institutions, so why be salty about it?

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    Re: Reasons to re-think ANU.

    Quote Originally Posted by xixander View Post
    I don't think I was wrong to single out the issue with the (mis)advertised ATARs at these institutions. I also don't see how my statements were misinformed, nor how the SMH article is factually inaccurate.
    It's misleading. The article is obviously extremely misleading. Nearly every university in the world admits students with bonus points or equivalents, which reduces the admission score below the standardized cutoff.

    ANU does this, UNSW does this, Usyd does this, Ivy Leagues in the US offer legacy points. It's a standard practice, saying "X% of people were admitted below the advertised cutoff" is a misleading claim that is designed to pander to anyone who doesn't understand how admissions work. Clickbait at best.

    You seem to be focused on 1, which is absolutely not something I was trying to dispute. In fact, I agree that the LLB is more selective at UNSW. Perhaps I should have been more clear, so let me try again.
    Except when you said this:

    UNSW and Macquarie for comparison, because they do stand out, at least amongst NSW unis, as being up there with "the worst when it comes it comes to faking selectivity."
    Because UNSW in comparison to tafe is totally faking their selectivity. Every university uses marketing, but when it comes to actual university selection standards, UNSW overpowers ANU by a mile - which you denied in the former part of that statement. If UNSW is "up here with the worst", then ANU is too. That's your statement.


    supporting claim 1 – more than twice as many people achieve it than the advertised ATAR – supporting claim 2. (Since reasoning in percentiles can be confusing, proportionally think of this as if the advertised ATAR were 70 but you were letting in people with a score of 35, and remember that it applies to at least 3/4 of the admittees.)
    In basic statistics, we are taught about Location using median, mode, and mean. We are also taught about Spread using ranges (interquartile and min/max) and variance/deviations.

    UNSW and Usyd both provide these statistics to be transparent about their admission, particularly range, which tells you the quantity for ranges, as well as the minimums and maximums of such ranges. It's not proportional (what are you talking about?), it's distribution, and UNSW is very clear to point out that the distribution of their LLB students is left skewed in the 99 range.

    Considering you are playing both sides of the argument, arguing for the justification of bonus points - but scolding universities that openly admit students below cutoffs using them (which is the reason they exist), here is the approximate LLB bell curves of Usyd and UNSW. I would be money that the bell curve for ANU is phase shifted 5 points to the left.



    Yes, half the students were below the cutoff - I would assume the same applies to literally every other university in Australia. Do you really think that the median for ANU LLB admissions is exactly above 97? If we're being realistic, it's probably lower - before EAS and EAP points, 5 bonus points were given to nearly any applicant. UNSW offers no bonus points for LLB apart from EAS and EAP. Obviously, lower cutoff, and less bonus points - will make it far more likely that ANU also admits many students below the advertised cutoff.

    But we will never know, because ANU wont release the data anyway.

    What I said in defence of 3 is that we don't have any admission data for ANU so we can't draw strong conclusions either way, but all things being equal, I find the advertised ATAR at ANU to be the more believable and realistic figure of the two. Also, I fully agree with you that it's a shame ANU doesn't disclose this information.
    I don't really a cutoff of 92 is realistic for the difficulty of LLB at a Go8. This year will be the first time ever that academic bonus points are being scrapped - and I can almost guarantee you it's because too many students were clawing their way in with inferior ATAR's.



    Regarding bonus points at USyd... err, yeah, they totally award those.

    They award bonus points for academic performance in certain subjects, pretty much exactly like ANU. Up to 5 points, just like ANU does. Commerce, which you cited, is a rare exception (alongside law and medicine).
    I didn't know about these, but I want to expand on this so you understand how bonus points between Usyd and USyd compare.

    ANU awards academic bonus points for all courses with a cutoff below 98 for all the following subjects:

    http://www.anu.edu.au/study/apply/bonus-points

    Basically, get a B in math and you get 5 points. Not particularly hard. These aren't up to 5 bonus points, you get 5 points for getting a B in english or math. You're not limited to degrees under the cutoff of 98, so it doesn't matter if you're going into something unrelated to mathematics, you'll still get those 5 points for doing well in math.

    Now for Usyd:
    http://sydney.edu.au/science/fstuden...flexible.shtml

    You can get *up to* 5 points for a Bsc. Bsc has a cutoff of 83. The highest cutoff course is BAdvMath, and you only get up to 5 bonus points without a specified number, in a flexible entry application.

    You need to get straight A's in 2U, 3U and 4U math (which is much harder than the hardest extension courses in ACT). From a math students perspective, saying it's hard is an understatement.

    These bonus points don't apply to the most popular degrees Usyd offers, such as Bcommerce, Becon, LLB, etc. These bonus points are for science dep students only.

    Again, similar to ANU which doesn't award extra points for its flagship programmes. In their own words, typically faculties at USyd will "consider students who have an ATAR up to 5 ATAR points below the published cut-off in that year".
    So obviously bonus points at ANU and USyd are not alike.

    I am not defending ANU per se. For example, I think Dichromate raised some fair criticism in his post and I openly acknowledged it (while, nonetheless, disagreeing on various points). In your case, I am addressing a claim that seems unfair and poorly backed up ("ANU is one of the worst when it comes to faking selectivity").
    I was wrong about one thing, which was Usyd's flexible entry program. You're yet to prove my original statements about the selectivity of ANU is untrue - you have only (and unsuccessfully) tried to claim UNSW/Usyd are in NSW standards worse (which you later upgraded from worse, to "just as bad").

    I think my argument is very simple. ANU has low cutoffs, it has easy bonus points, it's ranking is misleading, and ACT students don't want to stay in the ACT to study undergrad for a reason.

    The reason I care is that, when I was making the life-changing decision of which university go to, I relied a lot on this forum. Had I read and believed some of the nonsense you wrote, I probably would have avoided ANU altogether, whereas it actually turned out to be great choice for me. That's why.
    Let's be reasonable here, and present a hypothetical. You're wrong, and all your posts in response to mine end up misleading several students into studying at ANU when they had other options like USyd and UNSW available.

    Once you realize you're wrong, according to this statement here - you're morally responsible for being uninformed and misleading other students. Some students went on the internet, and based the future of their education on arguments they found on an unofficial web forum, but because you are morally responsible for their decisions, you are to blame for being wrong.

    You could easily be as likely to be as wrong as you think I am, don't pretend you're exempt from the moral liability you tried to inlay on me.

    Alternatively, as intelligent adults using the internet, we can present arguments and debate the quality of universities using available information and facts, future university students can read and filter that information and form an opinion on the the quality of those universities. In this example, it is the responsibility of said students to use their brain and critical thinking to process facts.
    Last edited by MikeLloyd; 22 Oct 2016 at 12:29 AM.

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    Re: Reasons to re-think ANU.

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeLloyd View Post
    It's misleading. The article is obviously extremely misleading. Nearly every university in the world admits students with bonus points or equivalents, which reduces the admission score below the standardized cutoff.

    ANU does this, UNSW does this, Usyd does this, Ivy Leagues in the US offer legacy points. It's a standard practice, saying "X% of people were admitted below the advertised cutoff" is a misleading claim that is designed to pander to anyone who doesn't understand how admissions work. Clickbait at best.



    Except when you said this:



    Because UNSW in comparison to tafe is totally faking their selectivity. Every university uses marketing, but when it comes to actual university selection standards, UNSW overpowers ANU by a mile - which you denied in the former part of that statement. If UNSW is "up here with the worst", then ANU is too. That's your statement.




    In basic statistics, we are taught about Location using median, mode, and mean. We are also taught about Spread using ranges (interquartile and min/max) and variance/deviations.

    UNSW and Usyd both provide these statistics to be transparent about their admission, particularly range, which tells you the quantity for ranges, as well as the minimums and maximums of such ranges. It's not proportional (what are you talking about?), it's distribution, and UNSW is very clear to point out that the distribution of their LLB students is left skewed in the 99 range.

    Yes, half the students were below the cutoff - I would assume the same applies to literally every other university in Australia. Do you really think that the median for ANU LLB admissions is exactly above 97? If we're being realistic, it's probably lower - before EAS and EAP points, 5 bonus points were given to nearly any applicant. UNSW offers no bonus points for LLB apart from EAS and EAP. Obviously, lower cutoff, and less bonus points - will make it far more likely that ANU also admits many students below the advertised cutoff.

    But we will never know, because ANU wont release the data anyway.



    I don't really a cutoff of 92 is realistic for the difficulty of LLB at a Go8. This year will be the first time ever that academic bonus points are being scrapped - and I can almost guarantee you it's because too many students were clawing their way in with inferior ATAR's.





    I didn't know about these, but I want to expand on this so you understand how bonus points between Usyd and USyd compare.

    ANU awards academic bonus points for all courses with a cutoff below 98 for all the following subjects:

    http://www.anu.edu.au/study/apply/bonus-points

    Basically, get a B in math and you get 5 points. Not particularly hard. These aren't up to 5 bonus points, you get 5 points for getting a B in english or math. You're not limited to degrees under the cutoff of 98, so it doesn't matter if you're going into something unrelated to mathematics, you'll still get those 5 points for doing well in math.

    Now for Usyd:
    http://sydney.edu.au/science/fstuden...flexible.shtml

    You can get *up to* 5 points for a Bsc. Bsc has a cutoff of 83. The highest cutoff course is BAdvMath, and you only get up to 5 bonus points without a specified number, in a flexible entry application.

    You need to get straight A's in 2U, 3U and 4U math (which is much harder than the hardest extension courses in ACT). From a math students perspective, saying it's hard is an understatement.

    These bonus points don't apply to the most popular degrees Usyd offers, such as Bcommerce, Becon, LLB, etc. These bonus points are for science dep students only.



    So obviously bonus points at ANU and USyd are not alike.



    I was wrong about one thing, which was Usyd's flexible entry program. You're yet to prove my original statements about the selectivity of ANU is untrue - you have only (and unsuccessfully) tried to claim UNSW/Usyd are in NSW standards worse (which you later upgraded from worse, to "just as bad").

    I think my argument is very simple. ANU has low cutoffs, it has easy bonus points, it's ranking is misleading, and ACT students don't want to stay in the ACT to study undergrad for a reason.



    Let's be reasonable here, and present a hypothetical. You're wrong, and all your posts in response to mine end up misleading several students into studying at ANU when they had other options like USyd and UNSW available.

    Once you realize you're wrong, according to this statement here - you're morally responsible for being uninformed and misleading other students. Some students went on the internet, and based the future of their education on arguments they found on an unofficial web forum, but because you are morally responsible for their decisions, you are to blame for being wrong.

    You could easily be as likely to be as wrong as you think I am, don't pretend you're exempt from the moral liability you tried to inlay on me.

    Alternatively, as intelligent adults using the internet, we can present arguments and debate the quality of universities using available information and facts, future university students can read and filter that information and form an opinion on the the quality of those universities. In this example, it is the responsibility of said students to use their brain and critical thinking to process facts.
    You reckon I should give up my scholarship and not go ANU?

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    Cadet MikeLloyd's Avatar
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    Re: Reasons to re-think ANU.

    Quote Originally Posted by Stewartanderson View Post
    You reckon I should give up my scholarship and not go ANU?
    Weigh out the costs and benefits. I have 0 context for this.

    I'm assuming you got the tuckwell?

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    Re: Reasons to re-think ANU.

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeLloyd View Post
    Weigh out the costs and benefits. I have 0 context for this.

    I'm assuming you got the tuckwell?
    Yes.
    What uni you reckon will get me into Harvard as a postgrad?
    2 of my cousins got into Harvard as postgrads and they graduated from ANU. Does that make a difference?

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    Re: Reasons to re-think ANU.

    Also, I'm going to move to America anyway. I've heard ANU and UMELB have better recognition and reputation over at the states. That's all I care about.

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    Cadet MikeLloyd's Avatar
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    Re: Reasons to re-think ANU.

    Quote Originally Posted by Stewartanderson View Post
    Yes.
    What uni you reckon will get me into Harvard as a postgrad?
    2 of my cousins got into Harvard as postgrads and they graduated from ANU. Does that make a difference?
    Congratulations on the tuckwell - I didn't make it past the interviews.

    Any university can get you into US leagues if you have high GPA / sound extracurriculars / good application / decent externals.

    If you're doing law, Usyd has harvard as an exchange partner, that's about the closest you can get to an advantage in ivy admissions. UNSW specializes in their business school, and they have Wharton as an exchange partner.

    Again, not enough context. For most students at ANU, if you have a 90 WAM and a polished application - you're probably fine.

    ANU has no ivy exchange partners, so you're not going to get any special treatment. Generally for undergraduate, because Australia's top 4 Go8's are largely undifferentiated it doesn't matter when you apply for postgraduate - however if you get an exchange in the US it can greatly improve your chances of acceptance (granted you also have excellent scores).

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    Re: Reasons to re-think ANU.

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeLloyd View Post
    Congratulations on the tuckwell - I didn't make it past the interviews.

    Any university can get you into US leagues if you have high GPA / sound extracurriculars / good application / decent externals.

    If you're doing law, Usyd has harvard as an exchange partner, that's about the closest you can get to an advantage in ivy admissions. UNSW specializes in their business school, and they have Wharton as an exchange partner.

    Again, not enough context. For most students at ANU, if you have a 90 WAM and a polished application - you're probably fine.

    ANU has no ivy exchange partners, so you're not going to get any special treatment. Generally for undergraduate, because Australia's top 4 Go8's are largely undifferentiated it doesn't matter when you apply for postgraduate - however if you get an exchange in the US it can greatly improve your chances of acceptance (granted you also have excellent scores).
    Wait a second, you haven't actually studied at ANU? So you're currently in year 12 as well? Lol, what makes you think you're qualified enough to criticise ANU? Why'd you apply for Tuckwell if you absolutely despise of the ANU anyway? And to think I was going to give up 100K based on YOUR opinion.

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    Re: Reasons to re-think ANU.

    Quote Originally Posted by Stewartanderson View Post
    Also, I'm going to move to America anyway. I've heard ANU and UMELB have better recognition and reputation over at the states. That's all I care about.
    Umelb - Yes, they have ivy exchange partners. (Upenn, Princeton, Cornell, Columbia)
    USyd - Yes, ivy exchange partners. (Upenn, Princeton, Cornell, Columbia, Harvard)
    UNSw - Yes, ivy exchange partners. (Upenn (Wharton), Princeton, Cornell, Columbia)
    ANU - No ivy partners.

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    Re: Reasons to re-think ANU.

    Quote Originally Posted by Stewartanderson View Post
    Wait a second, you haven't actually studied at ANU? So you're currently in year 12 as well? Lol, what makes you think you're qualified enough to criticise ANU? Why'd you apply for Tuckwell if you absolutely despise of the ANU anyway? And to think I was going to give up 100K based on YOUR opinion.
    Most people who are actually studying at ANU don't take the time to research the admissions process and quality of ANU. I'm from the US, sibling studying at Ivy as transfer from Au. I study some of my math at ANU.

    I don't despise ANU, I just posted some of my criticisms of the universities admission selection process. What makes anyone qualified to criticize other universities? The people who are probably the most qualified to comment on universities are prospective students who are putting 100+ hours into understanding the undergrad market. Do you really think someone who has a massive sunk cost as an ANU grad is more qualified?

    For all I know, I might even end up studying at ANU. That decision is 100% dependent on my scholarship offers / final results. I would much prefer ANU over the majority of universities, but in comparison to other top Go8's, criticism is due.

    You're the one who asked me. I didn't go out of my way to tell you anything, if you really gave up 100k based on something someone on the internet claimed - I would question whether or not you've done enough personal research into Australian universities.
    Last edited by MikeLloyd; 22 Oct 2016 at 12:51 AM.

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