Monday 27 January 2014


Science Made Fun Exhibition at School of Physical and Mathematical Sciences, NTU

Lim Min's #LoveAtFirstSight submission has won her a $10 Starbucks Gift Card

Tuesday 14 January 2014

Oxford and Cambridge application for Singaporean students

For students who are applying to Oxbridge, read this blog post written by an RI alumnus. I find it very informative and objectively written.

It contains excellent information on Oxbridge admission processes,  US vs UK universities admissions,  Oxbridge vs other UK universities, admission rates etc.

Sunday 5 January 2014

QS World University Rankings by Subject - Top 10 in Mathematics


Trinity College tops the Cambridge's Tompkins Table

The Independent, by Richard Garner, 7 July 2013

A trinity for Trinity College as it again tops university league table for undergraduate degree results

Trinity College Cambridge has achieved a hat-trick by coming top of the university's league table for undergraduate degree results for the third year in succession.

For the second year running, too, the college achieved a record with the highest proportion of first degree passes ever achieved at 41.7 per cent.

It put the college eight percentage points clear of second-placed Pembroke College - which moved into the runner-up slot this year, replacing Emmanuel College - which slipped to fourth place.

The success story is revealed in the annual Tompkins Table, produced exclusively for The Independent by Peter Tompkins, himself a former Trinity alumnus who has been compiling the table for the past 30 years.

This year's results are a significant achievement for Trinity College - as it is the largest college at either Oxford or Cambridge. To score such a high percentage of first with such a large entry is a considerable achievement, argued Mr Tompkins.

"Small variations in results for small colleges can make a big difference to their rankings but for the largest college to come head and shoulders in front is statistically very significant," he added.

Elsewhere in the table, there was a significant improvement by Trinity Hall which climbed five places from eighth to third in the table, Queens' College, also up five places from 12th to seventh and Peterhouse, up from 18th to 10th. The biggest drop was recorded by Corpus Christi - third last year but 16th this.

Trinity was established way back in 1546 and boasts the highest number of Nobel prize winners of any Cambridge college - with more than one in four of all those gained by Cambridge alumni. Former graduates include Prince Charles, although he only gained a 2:2 in 1970. The college first started admitting female students in 1976.

It lowest position in the Tompkins Table has been eighth but this year is the fourth time it has finished top.

The college claims its success - which has been most noticeable in recent years - has been down to its decision not only to play to its traditional strengths in science and engineering but focus on achieving the best results possible in the arts and humanities as well. It has a diverse student population - drawn from all corners of the UK and around the world.

The table ranks colleges on a points system with five points for a first, three for a 2:1, two for a 2:2 and one for a third. Separately, the colleges are also ranked on the percentage of first degrees they achieve (final column).
1 (1) Trinity, 73.66%, 41.7%
2 (4) Pembroke, 70.85%, 33.7%
3 (8) Trinity Hall, 68.94%, 28.1%
4 (2) Emmanuel, 68.72%, 30.5%
5 (5) Churchill, 68.17%, 28.3%
6 (7) Jesus, 67.47%, 27.1%
7 (12) Queens', 66.89%, 26.3%
8 (9) Christ's, 66.76%, 24.7%
9 (10) St Catharine's, 66.51%, 26.9%
10 (18) Peterhouse, 66.41%, 27.8%
11 (11) Clare, 66.08%, 25.3%
12 (20) Downing, 66.05%, 23.0%
13 (14) St John's, 65.84%, 25.1%
14 (13) King's 65.49%, 25.9%
15 (15) Magdalene, 65.00%, 22.8%
16 (3) Corpus Christi, 64.94%, 23.9%
17 (16) Gonville & Caius, 64.85%, 21.1%
18 (6) Selwyn, 64.59%, 21.6%
19 (17) Sidney Sussex 64.37%, 19.8%
20 (19) Fitzwilliam, 64.16%, 21.4%
21 (22) Girton, 62.92%, 18.5%
22 (21) Robinson, 61.95%, 16.2%
23 (23) Newnham, 60.92%, 15.8%
24 (24) Murray Edwards, 60.74%, 13.9%
25 (25) Wolfson, 60.51%, 18.9%
26 (27) Homerton, 60.33%, 16.0%
27 (26) Hughes Hall 57.92%, 13.2%
28 (29) Lucy Cavendish, 57.43%, 13.4%
29 (28) St Edmund's, 56.35%, 13.4%


Tompkins Table Wikipedia with past rankings

In the 20th century, members of Trinity won 31 Nobel Prizes of the 89 won by members of Cambridge University, the highest number of any college. Five Fields Medals in Mathematics were won by members of the college (of the six awarded to members of British universities). Trinity alumni include six British prime ministers, physicists Isaac Newton and Niels Bohr, philosophers Ludwig Wittgenstein and Bertrand Russell. Our very own Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong is also a Trinity alumnus (heard he was a senior wrangler during his time).

Saturday 4 January 2014

Conditional Offer from Cambridge

Dear Jeck

I am very pleased to inform you that you have been made a conditional offer to study Mathematics at Trinity College. Many congratulations!

A formal offer letter from Dr Wingfield with the precise details was posted to you yesterday, Friday 3 January. A copy has also been sent to your referee. The decision should also shortly appear on UCAS Track (

I wish you well with your examinations.

Best wishes,
Ms Stacey Smith
Admissions Secretary
Trinity College
Cambridge CB2 1TQ

The above is from UCAS Track. Lim Jeck has already met the conditional offer requirement of GPA 4.2 :) He has no conditional requirement for Grade 1,1 in STEP (Sixth Term Exam Paper) II and STEP III, which I understand almost all Cambridge Math offers are subject to (refer to Cambridge Guide to Admissions in Mathematics.), and he had not sat any STEP before.

His entry date should be October 2016 instead of October 2015.