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    Hi all, I have a bit of a silly question...
    I'm just finishing off my personal statement (for a MSt in General Linguistics and Comparative Philology) but I'm a bit confused as to whether or not we're supposed to include lines such as 'Dear ...' and 'Yours sincerely, ...' in the beginning and ending resp.
    I'm applying from abroad and have read online that you should not add such things to your undergrad UCAS statement (don't know if that's correct) but I can't seem to find information on this for postgraduate studies.
    Also, say I do include these phrases, who exactly do I address in the beginning? Surely 'Dear Admissions Tutor' can't be what they look for?!

    Sorry if this is something everyone else finds obvious - I don't, and any help is much appreciated!
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    (Original post by maliese)
    Hi all, I have a bit of a silly question...
    I'm just finishing off my personal statement (for a MSt in General Linguistics and Comparative Philology) but I'm a bit confused as to whether or not we're supposed to include lines such as 'Dear ...' and 'Yours sincerely, ...' in the beginning and ending resp.
    I'm applying from abroad and have read online that you should not add such things to your undergrad UCAS statement (don't know if that's correct) but I can't seem to find information on this for postgraduate studies.
    Also, say I do include these phrases, who exactly do I address in the beginning? Surely 'Dear Admissions Tutor' can't be what they look for?!

    Sorry if this is something everyone else finds obvious - I don't, and any help is much appreciated!
    It's definitely not obvious, don't worry. I go along the lines of the fact this isn't a cover letter, but merely a statement. We're therefore not addressing it to anyone but quite literally /stating/ why we feel we should be accepted. So, no 'dear' or 'yours ____'. That's my opinion, and is what I've done for similar things in the past which read statement rather than cover letter, and they turned out fine .
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    (Original post by maliese)
    Hi all, I have a bit of a silly question...
    I'm just finishing off my personal statement (for a MSt in General Linguistics and Comparative Philology) but I'm a bit confused as to whether or not we're supposed to include lines such as 'Dear ...' and 'Yours sincerely, ...' in the beginning and ending resp.
    I'm applying from abroad and have read online that you should not add such things to your undergrad UCAS statement (don't know if that's correct) but I can't seem to find information on this for postgraduate studies.
    Also, say I do include these phrases, who exactly do I address in the beginning? Surely 'Dear Admissions Tutor' can't be what they look for?!

    Sorry if this is something everyone else finds obvious - I don't, and any help is much appreciated!
    Conventionally, personal statements, statements of purpose &c aren't letters and don't include courtesy phrases such as 'Dear...'.
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    (Original post by ViralRiver)
    It's definitely not obvious, don't worry. I go along the lines of the fact this isn't a cover letter, but merely a statement. We're therefore not addressing it to anyone but quite literally /stating/ why we feel we should be accepted. So, no 'dear' or 'yours ____'. That's my opinion, and is what I've done for similar things in the past which read statement rather than cover letter, and they turned out fine .
    (Original post by QHF)
    Conventionally, personal statements, statements of purpose &c aren't letters and don't include courtesy phrases such as 'Dear...'.
    Thanks guys, this was very helpful!


    Also, does anybody know how strict they are with the word count for the written work that's to be handed in?
    When they say 2,000 words per essay I suppose they really do mean 2,000 words per essay?! Do you think I can get away with about 2,200 and 2,100 (excluding bibliography)?
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    (Original post by maliese)
    When they say 2,000 words per essay I suppose they really do mean 2,000 words per essay?! Do you think I can get away with about 2,200 and 2,100 (excluding bibliography)?
    Well, when I tell a student to give me a 2,000 word essay I don't expect a 2,200 word essay. Fitting an appropriate number of ideas into a defined space is a useful skill.

    Do you want to risk it? What if you put in an application which is superb in every other respect but you get out-competed by other similarly good applicants because they could write to requirements? Even if the chance of that happening is low, my feeling is that it would be bad enough that it's not worth risking it.
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    (Original post by QHF)
    Well, when I tell a student to give me a 2,000 word essay I don't expect a 2,200 word essay. Fitting an appropriate number of ideas into a defined space is a useful skill.

    Do you want to risk it? What if you put in an application which is superb in every other respect but you get out-competed by other similarly good applicants because they could write to requirements? Even if the chance of that happening is low, my feeling is that it would be bad enough that it's not worth risking it.

    Yeah, I actually came to that conclusion, too, and have managed to cut my samples down Thanks for replying!
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    Hi! I'm currently in my third year of English and Creative Writing. I'm at a smaller uni right now, but I'd like to apply to a higher university for my postgrad. I'm thinking of doing Comparative Literature, and so far I'm really interested in the MSt Modern Languages at Oxford.I'd really love to give it a go, but I'm a bit scared that they won't accept me because my undergraduate degree isn't the degree they ask for in the admission criteria... However I contacted the admissions office and they said they do consider applications from other humanity degrees too... But I guess the other students would be preferred. I think I may stand a chance even though my degree isn't what they ask for because I'm multilingual and fluent in German and French and studied the language & literature of both of those languages depth over several years in secondary school. (I'm from Luxembourg, where both of those languages are amongst the official languages). Do you think I'd stand a chance?
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    (Original post by steffielina)
    Hi! I'm currently in my third year of English and Creative Writing. I'm at a smaller uni right now, but I'd like to apply to a higher university for my postgrad. I'm thinking of doing Comparative Literature, and so far I'm really interested in the MSt Modern Languages at Oxford.I'd really love to give it a go, but I'm a bit scared that they won't accept me because my undergraduate degree isn't the degree they ask for in the admission criteria... However I contacted the admissions office and they said they do consider applications from other humanity degrees too... But I guess the other students would be preferred. I think I may stand a chance even though my degree isn't what they ask for because I'm multilingual and fluent in German and French and studied the language & literature of both of those languages depth over several years in secondary school. (I'm from Luxembourg, where both of those languages are amongst the official languages). Do you think I'd stand a chance?
    You'd stand a chance. None of us can tell whether you'd stand a good chance, as that depends on far too many factors, many of which are unknowable. If you're fluent in German and French then you ought to tick the box for 'degree-level knowledge of at least one European language' that they require -- but note that degree study of languages usually involves the study of some older material, and they want 'proof of linguistic ability commensurate with advanced literary study'. So ask yourself whether you'd be prepared to tackle, say, sixteenth-century written French or German as well as twenty-first-century everyday speaking & writing.

    You'll need to make the point that you have French & German as well as English clearly and early on in your statement of purpose (and I'd suggest including a 'Languages' section on your CV where you list your fluency in them). It would also be wise to make sure that the samples of your work that you submit are comparative literature essays which deal with French and/or German. If your work samples demonstrate a degree-level ability to read, analyse and compare texts in a language other than English you'll prove your competence. If your current degree course is in English & CW, this may mean that you'll have to whip up a couple of extra essays—normally applicants have work from their existing degree which they can submit but presumably most/all of your current work is on English literature.
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    (Original post by QHF)
    You'd stand a chance. None of us can tell whether you'd stand a good chance, as that depends on far too many factors, many of which are unknowable. If you're fluent in German and French then you ought to tick the box for 'degree-level knowledge of at least one European language' that they require -- but note that degree study of languages usually involves the study of some older material, and they want 'proof of linguistic ability commensurate with advanced literary study'. So ask yourself whether you'd be prepared to tackle, say, sixteenth-century written French or German as well as twenty-first-century everyday speaking & writing.

    You'll need to make the point that you have French & German as well as English clearly and early on in your statement of purpose (and I'd suggest including a 'Languages' section on your CV where you list your fluency in them). It would also be wise to make sure that the samples of your work that you submit are comparative literature essays which deal with French and/or German. If your work samples demonstrate a degree-level ability to read, analyse and compare texts in a language other than English you'll prove your competence. If your current degree course is in English & CW, this may mean that you'll have to whip up a couple of extra essays—normally applicants have work from their existing degree which they can submit but presumably most/all of your current work is on English literature.
    Thanks a lot for your elaborate answer! The email I got from Oxford was already pretty informative, but this answers some more questions.
    Throughout my secondary education we've covered all literary periods in all three languages, so I guess I should highlight that in my personal statement (and give examples to some texts). Although I'd want to focus on Modern literature for the course itself.
    I started working on my CV and in the secondary school bit I indicated for how many years I've been studying each language. In my skills section I also included how well I speak each language, and in my work experience bit I mentioned some summer jobs I had in Luxembourg where I had to talk to customers in several languages, as well as my current job as an online language teacher.
    About the essays - I was thinking of submitting one of my highest marked literary essays, not sure which one yet. Your idea of writing an extra essay doesn't sound too bad, but should I write that essay in English or French/German then?
    Again, thanks a lot for your help!
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    (Original post by steffielina)
    Your idea of writing an extra essay doesn't sound too bad, but should I write that essay in English or French/German then?
    Again, thanks a lot for your help!
    I was imagining that you might write an essay in English, discussing texts which are in French or German, quoted and analysed in the original. But while I work in the humanities I don't work in MML, so I'm not giving you a definitive answer. You could always email the faculty again and ask whether they'd be interested in a piece of work in the language you're applying to study.
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    (Original post by ViralRiver)
    Hey everyone, applying for the MSc in computer science. My first degree is in aero engineering, strong 1st (80%), year abroad in singapore, and getting some good research experience in machine learning in Japan whilst on the Daiwa Scholarahip programme. Hopefully my application is strong enough, as I know there's only 51 spaces!!

    Good luck everyone!!
    I am also applying for this course! Sorting out my statement of purpose at the moment... Good luck with your application, have you sent it yet?
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    2017 Entry for MPhil Chinese Studies.

    Does anybody know where i can find examples for submitted Written Work? Anything in the Humanities/Social Sciences really. I've used the search function here but can't find anything.
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    (Original post by factor24)
    I am also applying for this course! Sorting out my statement of purpose at the moment... Good luck with your application, have you sent it yet?
    Thanks, you too! I've not sent yet, been procrastinating with a completed application for a month now. Will send it off tomorrow I think. How's yours going?
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    (Original post by Detherion)
    2017 Entry for MPhil Chinese Studies.

    Does anybody know where i can find examples for submitted Written Work? Anything in the Humanities/Social Sciences really. I've used the search function here but can't find anything.
    They will take anything that fits the parameters they state. They are used to receiving applications from all over the world, from every conceivable educational background, from every conceivable application convention and in second, third and fourth languages.
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    (Original post by ViralRiver)
    Thanks, you too! I've not sent yet, been procrastinating with a completed application for a month now. Will send it off tomorrow I think. How's yours going?
    Not bad yeah, almost finished statement and have my referees sorted. Where are you applying from and which course if you don't mind me asking?
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    So far, one of my professors has submitted his recommendation. I'm going through my personal statement for final edits.

    And..... I am submitting one 4,000-5,000 essay as a writing sample in lieu of two 2,000 word essays. It's one of the options for the MSt in US History.

    I will be happy when this is OVER and done with!
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    i have technically sent in my application, although the payment errored and so i'm stuck in some weird limbo whilst they check out whether they've already taken my money or not.

    BUT I'VE SPIRITUALLY & EMOTIONALLY SENT IN MY APPLICATION. i'm applying for MSt English - 1700-1830! now i wait in grim, stoic patience.
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    (Original post by factor24)
    Not bad yeah, almost finished statement and have my referees sorted. Where are you applying from and which course if you don't mind me asking?
    I graduated last year from Imperial (MEng Aeronautical Engineering). Currently working as a researcher in Japan at the Artificial Intelligence Research Center, so I'm hoping that boosts my application. What about you?
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    (Original post by ViralRiver)
    I graduated last year from Imperial (MEng Aeronautical Engineering). Currently working as a researcher in Japan at the Artificial Intelligence Research Center, so I'm hoping that boosts my application. What about you?
    Oh nice! That will put you in a really good position for applying I reckon. I graduated this year from UCL with a maths degree- fingers crossed my application is up to scratch!
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    (Original post by factor24)
    Oh nice! That will put you in a really good position for applying I reckon. I graduated this year from UCL with a maths degree- fingers crossed my application is up to scratch!
    Good luck! Which college are you applying to if you don't mind me asking? I'm finding it extremely difficult to choose between them, but also don't want to waste too much time on a choice that may not mean much in the long run.

    ----

    On a separate note, on the application it asks the following two questions:

    1) Do you intend to apply for accommodation owned by the college?

    2) Do you intend to apply for accommodation owned by the University?

    If I want to live in accommodation owned by college A, for example, does this require me to choose yes to the second? I.e. is 1) a subset of 2) ... ?
 
 
 
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