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University of Oxford Admission

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    I am a Canadian student and will apply to Oxford for PPE in the fall.

    Any suggestions as to what college I should apply. Is Balliol to place to go. Do I have a better chance applying to a less well known college.

    What is your experience. Will it be tough for a Canadian to adapt.
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    The chance is the same at any college. Pick whichever one looks nicest to you.
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    The chances are not the same at every college, but no applicant has any idea if applying to a particular college will give them a better chance or not.

    It's better just to pick a college that appeals to you in some way. I picked my college because I heard it had nice food (no joke).

    If you do apply to a college that is oversubscribed for that year and the tutors think that you are good enough for a place at Oxford but not at that particular college there is the possibility that you can be 'pooled' to a different college.
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    (Original post by Manslaw)
    If you do apply to a college that is oversubscribed for that year and the tutors think that you are good enough for a place at Oxford but not at that particular college there is the possibility that you can be 'pooled' to a different college.
    It's more than a possibility! Every year, over 800 people get offers from a college they didn't apply to.
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    (Original post by Torontoboy)
    I am a Canadian student and will apply to Oxford for PPE in the fall.

    Any suggestions as to what college I should apply. Is Balliol to place to go. Do I have a better chance applying to a less well known college.

    What is your experience. Will it be tough for a Canadian to adapt.
    St Edmunds is the "Empire College" as some say. It has a history of taking on alot of Aus/Canadian students.
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    (Original post by Torontoboy)
    ...
    Is Balliol to place to go? Only if the college appeals to you most, yes - don't base college choice on rumours.

    Do I have a better chance applying to a less well known college? No. A less "popular" college will most likely be smaller and hence have fewer places. Also, you will be interviewed by more than one college anyway.

    Will it be tough for a Canadian to adapt? How can we answer that? Depends on you!
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    (Original post by Lord of the Flies)
    Also, you will be interviewed by more than one college anyway.
    Not necessarily. Only some PPE candidates are given second interviews at other colleges.
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    (Original post by lordharvey)
    Not necessarily. Only some PPE candidates are given second interviews at other colleges.
    Oh, pardon me in that case. I thought the Oxford admissions procedure guaranteed a second interview in all subjects!
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    (Original post by Lord of the Flies)
    Oh, pardon me in that case. I thought the Oxford admissions procedure guaranteed a second interview in all subjects!
    No. I had only one academic interview at one college - the college that accepted me..
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    (Original post by AnimalSpirit)
    No. I had only one academic interview at one college - the college that accepted me..
    Wow! That's a lot of pressure on a single 20-minute discussion... Well done!
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    (Original post by Lord of the Flies)
    Wow! That's a lot of pressure on a single 20-minute discussion... Well done!
    I was like: "Is that it? We're done here?" :zomg:

    "Yup"

    One applicant was sent to another college for more interviews, though.. I don't know if he was offered a place..
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    If there are any differences in terms of the chance of success depending on the college, it would be minimal.

    The only piece of ideal college(s) to apply for evidence I have seen is on the durham chemistry department's website. They say a few colleges are oversubscribed in terms of chemistry applicants (because of their close proximity to the chemistry building!)

    So while I doubt it will have much effect, applying to a college that is not notably close to where your subject is taught may boost your chances very slightly.
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    (Original post by Halogenation)
    If there are any differences in terms of the chance of success depending on the college, it would be minimal.

    The only piece of ideal college(s) to apply for evidence I have seen is on the durham chemistry department's website. They say a few colleges are oversubscribed in terms of chemistry applicants (because of their close proximity to the chemistry building!)

    So while I doubt it will have much effect, applying to a college that is not notably close to where your subject is taught may boost your chances very slightly.
    And the Durham chemistry department website is relevant to Oxford admission because...?
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    (Original post by AnimalSpirit)
    And the Durham chemistry department website is relevant to Oxford admission because...?
    Because Durham is a collegiate university and I was just stating that the durham chemistry department is the only source of information that has indicated the potential existance of an affect on application success rate depending on choice of college.

    Stick that in your pipe and smoke it.
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    (Original post by Halogenation)
    Because Durham is a collegiate university and I was just stating that the durham chemistry department is the only source of information that has indicated the potential existance of an affect on application success rate depending on choice of college.

    Stick that in your pipe and smoke it.
    Except for every Oxford website on the matter that clearly states that college choice has no effect on success rate.. Of course there will be differences in chance, but none which can be speculated in whatsoever..
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    If you're worried that you will not be able to "adapt" then maybe you should reconsider applying to a university in England because it is far from Canada and realising that you're uncomfortable once you start term would just make things a bit awkward or difficult for you.

    You need to choose a college that appeals to you (all colleges have their differences and similarities) and offers your course. Just have a look at the different college websites. When it comes to the application process if a college has too many applicants per place but they still think you've got potential then they will "pool" you so that you may get interviews and offers from another college
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    (Original post by AnimalSpirit)
    I was like: "Is that it? We're done here?" :zomg:

    "Yup"

    One applicant was sent to another college for more interviews, though.. I don't know if he was offered a place..
    When I applied two years back, I had seven - some went well, some went bad... Didn't get an offer in the end, but I'm happy I didn't now because I was applying for a subject that I wasn't really into anyway!
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    OOPS FORGOT TO QUOTE BUT THIS IS IN ANSWER TO THE DURHAM GUY

    But that's not really relevant to Oxford colleges because if some college is oversubscribed for one subject by a notable amount (or undersubscribed), candidates are reassigned before interview to other colleges in order for the numbers to be evened up relative to the number of places each college has. Plus there's the process of some candidates having second interviews anyway.

    As far as I know Durham has no similar system - in part because although Durham is a collegiate university in terms of accommodation and so on, there's no teaching at college level whereas college tutorials are in many ways the crux of the Oxford system. They also don't interview for the majority of subjects, which is another reason why numbers need to be evened up. Durham applicants are accepted at department level, Oxford applicants at college level.

    Also although some applicants will look at department distance, there are so many other factors that most people take into account because of the importance the college plays in your Oxford life. And everyone will tell you 'a long way away' in Oxford terms, is nothing in some big cities' terms anyway!

    The point is OP - the differences are so minimal that you are far better choosing your college on other factors, and to not try and guess which are the most oversubscribed. If tutors think you are good enough, you will get an offer from a college regardless of where you first applied.
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    (Original post by Lord of the Flies)
    When I applied two years back, I had seven - some went well, some went bad... Didn't get an offer in the end, but I'm happy I didn't now because I was applying for a subject that I wasn't really into anyway!
    Seven?! :shock: Holy crap! What did you apply for back then?

    Actually I had two interview, but the first one was with the college principal (he interviews all the candidates) and wasn't academic or subject-specific. I think he just wanted to get a feel for the candidate and see if we could fit in at the college.. Or maybe he just wants to meet all the candidates.. I'll ask him once I get up there in October - apparently he invites all the freshers to a conversation too
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    I shall leave this thread with a video of an attractive university student who is surprisingly amusing.

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Updated: July 4, 2012
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