Application

 Oxford

 Trinity

 Economics and Management

 2008

 pooled, offer made (Queen’s)

Applicant

 A-levels

 pre-qualification

 home

 India

 Independent – selective

I attended a really poor state school for GCSE’s though.

 yes (5 A*,3 A,2 B)

A-levels

(A at AS (267 UMS); predicted A; gained NA at A2)

(A at AS (281 UMS); predicted A; gained NA at A2)

(A at AS (290 UMS); predicted A; gained NA at A2)

(A at AS (280 UMS); predicted A; gained NA at A2)

I am also doing a Perspectives on Science Extended Project. My topic is Game Theory related.

Details about the offer

 conditional

A in Economics, A in Mathematics

AAA

yes

Will do.

yes

N/A

I haven’t heard back from LSE, but even if I do receive an offer, I will still choose Oxford. This is primarily due to its outstanding worldwide reputation, and the fact that in terms of character Oxford wins every time. It really is incredibly beautiful, and I have already fallen in love with my college. Another thing i prefer about Oxford is the tutorial system, which I think will suit me. Just hope I make the grades! 🙂

 grades pending/unknown

Decisions about the application

Oxford is the best!

Oxford’s Economics and Management course is less mathematical than Cambridge’s straight Economics. Also the management aspect actually looks very interesting.

P.S – Oxford is better!

Um…. I wanted to do Economics, and I liked the way in which Management combines with Economics in the course. For me it makes it more interesting, and also results in it being less mathematical. I did not do Further Maths, so this is helpful. Besides, I’m not sure how badly I would have done in Cambridge’s STEP paper.

I actually chose Trinity over Queens with a coin flip before I sent my application in. So when I was pooled to Queen’s, it was pretty weird, but awesome. Having seen them both during the interviews, I actually preferred Queen’s. Much of my decision was based on aesthetic reasons, and the reason I dod not apply to Magdalen or Christ Church was because ChCh is too big for my liking, and Magdalen has a reputation of being one of the most academic colleges. Queen’s is just perfect, as it is really beautiful, old enough and in the top 10 academically.

Preparation

yes

We had a 30 min weekly discussion on a newspaper article. It was totally pointless. As long as you read the news and think about what they’re reporting, you will be fine with current affairs.

Read news.
Brush up on Maths.
Check if your school does POS Extended Projects, and do one on an Econ or Mgmt related topic. It shows real interest, and independent research and work. Perhaps choose a topic that you meet on the degree course.

Interview

yes

Had to sit the TSA, and am still awaiting the results. These were supposedly used to cut off 50% of applicants pre-interview, so are quite important. You can’t really revise too much for this, but try and look at some BMAT stuff, there’s more of that available than just the 2 past papers for TSA.

no

No

no

No

The management sections of both my interviews went well, but my economics in the first one was abysmal, which was why I was pooled i guess.

Through your work experience, and being Secretary of the Economics society, tell me what you have found the most important aspect of Management to be.

What do you think about debt relief to developing countries?

Long discussion about current affairs, after reading an article on the planned bail out of the US car industry.

I had to plan a tariff for a bus route, after being given some information and assumptions. It was basically a logic exercise. The assumptions were then changed, and I had to figure out how this would change the tariff structure.

You are a buyer and want to buy a car. There is a seller, with a used car worth 1000 and a new car worth 2000. These are worth 1100 and 2100 to you. How much are you willing to pay for each car. If you didn’t know what type of car it was, then how much would you be willing to pay? etc. Basically it was meant to be solved using basic probability and arithmetic. I messed this up though, as my mind went blank when it came to calculation.

I wore a suit, because I felt more comfortable dressing formally. Most of the other interviewees were dressed informally though. So wear whatever you feel like, as long as it’s sensible.

Impressions

Trinity was nice, but seemed a bit dull. The food was amazing there though, and apparently they won the prize for college with the best food this year.

Queen’s was really nice. The front quad is beautiful, and the library is mgnificent. It seemed much more alive than Trinity, and the tutors at Queen’s were much nicer/friendlier too.

My accomodation at Trinity was ok. The bedroom wsas tiny, but the study was quite large. The heating was very poor though. This was apparently one of the worst rooms in the college 🙁 lol. My friend’s room was great. It was basically about 40 foot by 12, with windows on three sides.

Trinity food is apparently the best, and was indeed very good, compared to school food anyway.

Trinity –
Victor Seidel (Management) – He was friendly, and seemed nice. He is American, and quite tall (just so you know what to expect). My interview with him went OK, and he generally made me feel relaxed.

Young woman tutor (Economics – trinity) – I have forgotten her name. She was much more aloof, and while she was still very polite and friendly, I did not do very well in her part of the interview, so…

Clare Leaver (Economics – Queen’s) – Seemed very nice. Friendly and polite. Put me at ease completely. She seemed almost too nice to be an Oxford tutor!

George Bowen (Mangagementt – Queen’s) – Again was very friendly and nice. His part of the interview ended up being more like an interesting chat than an interview. He was amazing.

Young male (economics – lecturer?)- I was too nervous when he told me his name to remember. He was much more aloof, while still being polite. I messed up his question horifically, and wasn’t exactly inspired by the expression on his face :-). I thought they were going to reject me because of this. Tbh I’m still a bit scared of him.

The tutors at Queens (the first 2) were much more expressive while I was giving my answers. They would nod their head whenever I said something that made sense, and this kind of calms your nerves, because you know you’re on the right lines.

Um… The people at Trinty – *shrugs*.

Final stage

I went through the whole range. I would be confident one minute, then despairing the next. I couldn’t put it out of my mind at all. Just replayed my interviews over and over again in my head. That’s one more reason to choose Oxford, they tell you much faster than Cambridge.

Actually my Housemaster at school left a message saying I had received a letter from Trinity saying I did not have a place there, but that they thought another college was likely to accept me. I jumped out of bed and shouted! Then it occured to me that I still didn’t have the offer even though I was 99% sure, so I spent the next 2 days trying to keep my feelings in check before I called up Queen’s. They emailed me the letter, and then I let myself go crazy!

Looking back

Of course.

Always apply. Even if you don’t get in, the application is an experience in itself, and if you get an interview, then you’ll spend a couple of days at Oxford, which is generally awesome. At the interview, just stay as calm as possible, and if you make stupid mistakes don’t worry about it. They understand that you’re nervous!