Application

 Oxford

 NA (open application, allocated college)

 Engineering, Economics and Management

 1996

 offer made

Applicant

 Other qualifications

 pre-qualification

 EU

 N/A

 Comprehensive School

 yes

Other qualifications

National school examinations, predicted a percentage at around 5%, actually achieved a grade that resembles rather the top 2%. Also AP-Tests in Physics, Statistics and Govt/Politics.

Details about the offer

 conditional

Achieve exactly the grade I had predicted in my letter. Also some quite good grades in Maths and Physics.

yes

Accepting was an easy choice…

N/A

Had two other choices. One safe guard and one with a course like EEM. For both I would have had to apply about six months later.

 offer met

Decisions about the application

First ’cause I looked at the courses offered and found EEM to be exactly what I wanted. Then I looked around and found Oxford very exciting. Additionally I wanted to study internationaly and Oxford has top reputations.

There was also a part of me that wanted to see if I would manage.

Not really. I looked at Oxford’s sylabus and Cambridge’s but EEM was for me, while nothing at Cambridge really sparked my interest.

‘Cause it’s cool.

Because I think that it is quite necessary to have a profound knowledge of Engineering while also being able to understand some Management or Economics talk.

In a way I can also decide whether I want to go into research or get a job in the industry.

I didn’t know about the different colleges, so I made an open application. Ultimately I was much more impressed with the other college I had an interview at, and regretted my decision. On the other hand, the college I am in now is in other respects quite good. So I will be happy where I am.

Preparation

no

A teacher at a previous school used to teach at Oxford, so I called him up and asked some questions. He calmed me down enough.

I got notice only a week before the interviews. That was great because I couldn’t really prepare.

Since I assume, you are in a way interested in Engineering, keep on doing whatever you are doing in this regard. Also maybe read some “Economics” books like Tim Harford or Steven D. Levitt.

It is always good to know why you want to do what you applied to. Think of many questions and rehearse answers. (With rehearse I mean polish them till they shine.) Of course, these questions will not be asked. I was asked only one of those but one is enough. And preparation in this regard is helpful.
Also, you might be asked, whether you’d do only Engineering without the E&M part. I answered yes and I believe in a way that everyone should. Engineering is the most important part and if you are not willing to focus on it, the whole EEM might not be good for you. On the other hand, they could offer you a place to Engineering only as a result. And who would want that?

Interview

no

no

yes

Economics. Got a sheet with some information on it. Had to think about it and the questions supplied then answered them to the professor.
Engineering. Got some Maths and Physics problems during the interview. Had to answer those without preparation.

Very relaxed. Profs were nice and friendly and very understanding. They helped me with stuff I didn’t know. It was like we were in the same boat and they wanted me to succeed in the tasks.

I was very sad when my three interviews were over. They were interesting and I enjoyed them quite a lot although I was nervous before hand. You don’t have to.

It was purely academic. Not much about my resume.

That’s mostly confidential. Maths: Integrate/Derive showing that you know some of the rules. Draw a graph. Physics: A cool mechanical problem where you had to think outside the box. A tricky electrical problem where you couldn’t use intuition but had to tackle it very logicaly.

Wore blue jeans, shirt and black (suit-)jacket. I took a whole suit and also the jeans and then looked what other wore. So I decided to go this way. I think it was a okay. I felt comfortable in it. My interviewers wore mostly casual style.

Impressions

Nice. Friendly atmosphere. Was impressed by the other (more prestigous) college. It was much more formal and also boasted old buildings.

Room was very good. Modern and fairly sized. With very nice bathroom it was like a good hotel room. Also kitchens everywhere and everything in good shape. Quite splendid!

TOP!!! The advising students were embarassed because they only served two different meals. It was really tasty and I would go there (besides the academia) just for the food.

Very nice. I really look forward in being tutored by them.

Diverse. Some were geek like but most seemed to be down to earth like everyone else. With one difference. All were smart.

Final stage

Very hard to wait. I had an good impression from my interviews but then everybody else had, too.

Nothing. I was happy but that is more like a feeling not an action.

Looking back

Yes. Applying was fun. Interviews too, only waiting for results wasn’t. And working my butt off to meet the conditions of the offer was also not bad.

Go for it!