Application

 Cambridge

 Newnham

 Classics

 1996

 offer made

Applicant

 A-levels

 pre-qualification

 N/A

 N/A

 Independent – selective

 yes (9 A*,2 A)

A-levels

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

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

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

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

Details about the offer

 conditional

A in Latin

AAB

yes

N/A

 offer met

Decisions about the application

Because they are they best universities

Cambridge has a broader Classics course, I like the town better and my brother was at Cambridge

Loved the atmosphere when I came to look round, really nice gardens, good kitchen facilities, right opposite the Classics faculty (and all arts Faculties), college strong in Classics

Preparation

no

Not much

Be able to talk about your A level set texts if doing A level Latin/Greek, read up something else in case you are asked what else interests you. Be prepared to engage in general intellectual debate. Remember that what they are looking for is your potential (both academically and as a whole) not what you know/do now.

Interview

no

yes

An essay, which I had to write specially, but I don’t think it was very important in the selection procedure.

no

I had three interviews, each with one person in their rooms. All the interviewers were polite and non-threatenting: it sounds odd but it was actually quite an enjoyable experience, although I was very nervous.

Everything from “Why do you want to do Classics” to whether childhood was an artificial construct. A mixture of Classics related and general questions.

Jacket and skirt, because I wanted to look as though I’d made an effort.

Impressions

Very civilised college, but not pretentious or stuffy, really friendly outgoing students,

Rooms in good condition, size variable but often big with quality furniture, excellent kitchens, clean bathrooms, beautiful grounds, all on one site including sports facilities.

Good

Special diets catered for.

Down to earth and approachable

Really friendly, people were there to show applicants round and they hosted coffee parties in the evening.

Final stage

I was very happy, because I’d got a place and the offer was AAB.

Looking back

Yes, because I’ve had a wonderful time in Cambridge.

Newnham’s a great college, and it doesn’t matter that it’s women only because it means that you socialise more outside of college and get to know a wider range of people.