Application

 Oxford

 Worcester

 Philosophy and Theology

 2007

 offer made

Applicant

 A-levels

 post-qualification

 home

 United Kingdom

 Independent – selective

 yes (4 A*,6 A)

A-levels

(B at AS)

(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

 unconditional

yes

no

 offer met

Decisions about the application

Wanted a challenging undergraduate experience – something that is fairly rare, and certainly unguaranteed, at most other universities, for my subject. Also…who doesn’t want to go to Oxford?

Oxford had the option of joint course. Also the philosophy option has less emphasis on analytic philosophy, and enables one to study the more human aspects (e.g. existentialism)

I’m good at it, and I like the way it encorporates the key aspects of many other subjects (history, literature, anthropology, science, art, and so on).

I chose the most beautiful college. Lincoln and Teddy Hall were right up there with Worcester…but Worcester was the only one that offered my course. Easy decision. Also Worcester has a lake.

Preparation

no

There’s no real point in preparing a lot. I spent a whole year reading like mad (literally 200 books…), and in the end I got to mention maybe one in the interview. It’s more about the way in which you think that what you’ve already done.

Interview

no

yes

Two pieces of written work. One on Science and Religion, and one on the nature of morality.

yes

One hour philosophy exam. Totally unlike any practice papers I’d ever seen. It was hard.

I had 3 – two theology, one philosophy. I felt my second theology one was really good…the other two were pretty ambiguous.

Is moral objectivity possible?
Is religion reconcilable with science?
Loads of stuff on logical positivism, loads of wittgenstein (whom I knew nothing about…).
Had a logic puzzle in the philosophy interview.
Had to prepare a topic for the second theology, and present an article given to me, and then discuss it critically.

Just standard jumper+collar combo, with some nice dark trousers. Smart but not formal.

Impressions

Most Oxford colleges are really nice. But worcester has amazing grounds, brilliant food, lovely rooms, its really beautiful..

room was huge (and warm at night!). my accommodation block had a bath but no showers (!). it was lovely.

yes.

really nice.

they were cool. as were the other applicants. spent a lot of time in the JCR chatting and watching movies.

Final stage

was pretty anxious. to be honest, i was more worried before the interview, to the point where i couldn’t sleep, but then on the morning of the interview all that went away. i was pretty calm after that point.

my parents called me at work to tell me i got in…was kind of an anticlimax…rather sadistically, i like to stand around holding the envelope fretting before i actually open it in situations like this…

Looking back

yeah. but i’m not at oxford yet, so who knows if its a mistake or not…

just chill out, try and enjoy it!