Application

 Oxford

 Corpus Christi

 Chemistry

 2003

 open offer made (allocated to NA in the end)

Applicant

 A-levels

 pre-qualification

 N/A

 N/A

 Comprehensive School

 yes (1 A*,7 A,4 B,1 C)

A-levels

(A at AS; predicted A; gained NA at A2)

(A at AS; predicted A; gained NA at A2)

(A at AS; predicted A; gained NA at A2)

(A at AS; predicted B; gained NA at A2)

Details about the offer

 conditional

A in Chemistry, A in Mathematics

AAAB

yes

yes

yes

Gonna work to meet my offer, although Bristol gave me a piss easy offer of BC.

 grades pending/unknown

Decisions about the application

It’s worth it just for the relevant oxbridge degree at the end.

Oxford is nearer to home (45 mins on the train)

It had one of the lowest applicants : places ratio. I have friends that went there and enjoyed it, looked round it on an open day, seemed a nice place. This year they received a lot more applicants because everyone had seen this low figure published on the Oxford website.
The average figure for the last three years was 5 applicants for the 4 places. There were 12 applicants this year.

Preparation

yes

They tried, but I was at another interview (in Bristol) whilst they held mock interviews. So, no.

Don’t worry, you cannot prepare yourself for it really. Say what you’re thinking. Read New Scientist and put it on your personal statement, it makes you look interested in science in general.

Interview

no

no

no

I had two interviews. The first went really badly, he was an inorganic tutor so he asked me about redox equilibria. I wasn’t nervous, I thought I did badly because the guy had to help me through a lot of the stuff he was asking.
The second interview was on rates of reaction, and a bit on the maths to do with it. It went a lot better and came out of the room beaming.
They pooled me in for interview at another college (Somerville) and they asked me on rates of reaction again (not knowing I had already been tested on it). I rinsed it again, because I had done my chemistry coursework on rates of reaction, and had read up on it a fair bit.

1) Why the value of E(cell) can vary 2) Drawing graphs of reversible reactions, Kc and all that malarky. 3) Kinetic theory of reaction and the Arrhenius equation/graphs. There were no questions on “why oxford?” or “why chem?”. The only thing asked about my personal statement was what I had read in New Scientist recently.

I was wearing smart casual. The interviewers were both wearing jeans, and everyone else was wearing suits. For my final interview I stayed in my normal clothes.

Impressions

Nice, bit small but couldn’t complain really. All the colleges are cool.

Didn’t really have much to compare it to, sorry. It was average I guess, then again I wasn’t really expecting much anyway.

Good.

Great, they made you feel right at home. I may aswell have just been chatting to my mate about chemistry. In my last interview I was laughing with the interviewers about how I had failed to notice their blatent hints to an answer they wanted me to give.

Helpful and friendly.

Final stage

I guess I was happy, then again I hadn’t really thought that I would get into Oxford so it was a bit of a boost. I found out 6 days after my interview (Dec 20th). They gave me the dodgy offer of a place at a college which will be allocated to me when the A-level results are published. Then again they could put me at Trinity or somewhere good, who’s to know.

Looking back

Chill.