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Part III of Mathematical Tripos vs Master's in University of Bonn


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Good day. 

So, I have been accepted at the University of Cambridge for Part III of Mathematical Tripos and the chances are rather high, that I'll also be accepted at the University of Bonn. I am applying for a scholarship for University of Cambridge in my country, but yesterday I found out I've been awarded the DAAD scholarship for master's in Germany. The master's at Cambridge is only 9 months long, while the master's degree in Bonn is 2-year-long. What are your thoughts, which programme should I choose, provided I have a choice between the two? I want to do a PhD in Algebraic Geometry by the way.

http://www.maths.cam.ac.uk/postgrad/mathiii/courseguide/2014-15/

 

http://www.mathematics.uni-bonn.de/files/master/ma_modulehandbook.pdf

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Congratulations! That is a very big achievement. Said that, I think you have to consider what do you want to do after finishing your MS. First, it is well known that Mathematics is not an easy field to find a good job (depending on the location), so you want to be in a country where you can have better job prospects. UK is not that place, and it has a terrible migratory system, which does not allow you to stay there after finishing. Germany is a country in expansion and is recruiting international students with good language skills, plus you already have a scholarship. I would say go for Germany. 

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Thanks for your reply. I intend to do a PhD later.

That does not change my post. Even after finishing your PhD, you will face that dilemma in the UK and their crappy immigration system. In Germany you might be able to collaborate with more researchers and might land a better academic position (or industry). Overall, Germany is better than the UK.

 

If your goal is to get an academic in your home country, you should consider the reputation of your university in your home country.

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You'll be in a much better position for PhDs if you come with a masters from Cambridge than from Bonn.   Part III is internationally renowned, while Bonn is less so.  I'm not sure what the other poster is getting at regarding difficulty getting an academic job.  You will have better PhD options *anywhere* in the world--certainly in the US, Canada, UK and other commonwealth countries, Europe--with a masters from Cambridge, and going to a prestigious PhD program is probably the best thing you can do to have a successful career in academia.

 

If you wish to continue to a PhD immediately after the masters, then at Cambridge you will have to apply during your first few months there.  Then, if your undergrad degree is less-than-stellar, there is an advantage to having a two year program rather than a one-year, because you will have marks to show for it and more developed relationships with your professors.  If you are willing to wait until the end of Part III to apply for PhDs, or if your undergrad degree is already excellent and you don't need to strengthen your application significantly, then it's a no-brainer to go to Cambridge.

Edited by frsp
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Unless money is an issue, just come along to Cambridge :) I applied to Bonn as well, but Cambridge is a much better pick if you want to stick to academia.

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  • 5 years later...
  • 8 months later...

Hello, I currently have the same dilemma and I was wondering what decision you have made. I had the same thought as frsp, Bonn offers a two year Master's program, hence I will spend at least one year there before applying for a PhD, while Cambridge is only 9 months, hence I will have to apply for a PhD after 2 months. 

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