Application

 Oxford

 St Hilda’s (open application, allocated college)

 Philosophy, Politics and Economics (PPE)

 2008

 rejected

Applicant

 A-levels

 pre-qualification

 home

 United Kingdom

 Comprehensive School

 yes (10 A*,4 A)

A-levels

(D at AS)

(A at AS (296 UMS); predicted A; gained NA at A2)

(A at AS (245 UMS); predicted A; gained NA at A2)

(A at AS (241 UMS); predicted A; gained NA at A2)

(B at AS (234 UMS); predicted A; gained NA at A2)

Did several other qualifications including 3 BTECs and a 30 CAT open university module.

Other universities

yes

no

Decisions about the application

Good university with a course I really liked and excellent method of teaching.

The course was better, I also preferred Oxford as a town

I really enjoy studying, thinking and reading around all the areas of PPE.

There is some logic I believe in making an Open application. This is because it is usually the better candidates who make direct applications so Open applicants are thus more likely to be pooled to colleges where the competition is not as great. Additionally, I wasn’t too fussed about the college I went to.

Preparation

yes

Many practice interviews, conferences, handouts and continuous advice.

Start preparing earlier, get good academic results and do really well in the admissions test.

Interview

yes

Despite a lot of preperation, I still found the test really difficult. Perhaps this was down to my lack of aptitude for PPE.

yes

yes

Impressions

I thought they were really nice.

outstanding

Yes

Variable. Some were quite arrogant and snobbish. Others were lovely and warm.

Really nice people.

Final stage

Nervous, kind of knew it though because of my test results. Though I still wish they had given me an interview.

It changed the inner workings of my body for some time but then I got over it over the following weeks.

Looking back

No

You need aptitude. Hard work is not enough and thus it is important that you have a flair for your subject(s). They are ruthless in this aspect.