Application

 Oxford

 Mansfield

 English Language and Literature

 1999

 offer made

Applicant

 A-levels

 pre-qualification

 home

 N/A

 FE College

 yes (3 A,2 B,2 C)

A-levels

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

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

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

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

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

Advanced Extension Awards

(predicted Distinction; gained Merit)

English S level was the exam, not AEA… I presume Merit is eqivalent to Level 2 (Mod).

Details about the offer

 conditional

AAB

yes

yes

yes

Oxford 1st Choice on UCAS Form York 2nd Nottingham 3rd

 offer met

Decisions about the application

Thought it would be fun 🙂

Visited both cities and preferred Oxford

Visited Open Day. Liked it; thought it was small and friendly.

Preparation

yes

Had one mock interview with a college English tutor, who had attended Balliol about 30 years back.

The interview: Do as much reading around subject. Pick your favourite author, read 3/4 of his/her works, and bring them up in interview if asked about fav. authors/hobbies – you could also put this on your ‘special’ Oxford application form. (I did Thomas Hardy, for instance).

Interview

no

yes

Essay on Shakespeare’s ‘Merchant of Venice’ & Eng. Lit coursework on ‘1984’ and ‘Brave New World’. It was basically the only written work I had worth submitting; didn’t do many essays, you see.

no

Had 2 interviews; 1 formal & 1 informal. I thought they went very badly, but I got an offer anyway…they said they liked my responses.

Unseen poetry analysis. Questions on my sent-in written work. General questions about hobbies, interests, reading outside of my ‘A’ Level syllabus.

Jeans and jumper, plus warm coat, ‘cos it was cold!

Impressions

Very plush. My college is v. small – so the cosy atmosphere was v. apparent.

4m by 6m in size. En-suite bathroom. Phones in rooms in one block.

Good.

V. Friendly & helpful.

Ditto

Final stage

I was obviously very happy at this state of affairs, replied promptly, and got a bumf of stuff from college in the summer upon achieving my grades.

Looking back

Of course!

Just try to act ‘normal’, and, in the interview, think before answering a question.