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# The Oxford TSA thread - 2015 applicants - 5th Nov 2014 Watch

1. (Original post by drewsalexia)
I've only decided that I'm applying to Oxford at the end of September and I haven't started practicing for the TSA! I have less than a month, do you think I'll still be able to fit in enough practice?
Yeah no worries
2. Is there any way of converting the score from the test into the scores they use (e.g. 40/50 would equal ?)

Thanks
3. (Original post by amyrah)
Question 5 and 6 2013 TSA.. help?!
Question 5)
because:
b) is not an implicit assumption it is stated as fact
c) is not suggested by the article
d) it is stated in the article that the authorities are responsible
e) not really commented on/suggested.

Question 6
This one is horrible, have no idea how you're supposed to tackle in an exam setting.
We know that 1974 was a year in which Aurthurs birthday had 8 digits and that the two remaining digits were his age.
There are 10 possible digits - 0,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9
Therefore there are the following possible combinations:
23|05/06/08|1974
25|03/06/08|1974
26|03/05/08|1974
28|03/05/06|1974
We also know that 1983 was a year in which Aurthurs birthday had 8 digits, therefore 8 and 3 must not be present in Aurthurs birthday.
This leaves us with:
25|06|1974
26|05|1974
In both cases the missing digits are 3 and 8 so Aurthur was 38 or 83 in 1974
25|06|1983
26|05|1983
In both cases the missing digits are 4 and 7 so Aurthur was 47 or 74 in 1983
Therefore Aurthur must have been 38 in 1974 and 47 in 1983.
Therefore Authur was born in 1936 so D is the answer.
4. (Original post by kashagupta)
Can anyone please explain the reasoning behind Questions 32, 37, 41 and 48 for the 2008 TSA paper?

Thanks!
32)
If 4 quater finals then 8 teams have reached the quarter finals
a) - Is wrong, for if there were only 8 teams no-one would have played against anyone in stage 1
b), c), d) are wrong because they do not divide by 8 and the groups must be equal
e) 72 - must be correct

37)
The easiest way is to draw this out
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
|_|_|_|_|_|_|_|_|
|_|_|_|_|_|_|_|_|

This is the most efficeint layout given the farmer needs access to all pens individually - therefore (8x3) + (9x2) = 42 so the answer is B

41)
The answer is B because if the average repair costs are only lower because most people don't have to pay anything for repairs then people taking out the extended warranty are simply insuring against risk - this undermines the argument that no-one should take such policies out.

48)
80kg - \$100
85kg - \$110 (\$10)
90kg - \$125 (\$15)
95kg - \$145 (\$20)
100kg - \$170 (\$25)
105kg - \$200 (\$30)
110kg - \$235 (\$35)

Therefore C, \$235 is the answer.
5. How the hell do you 2008 Q37????
6. what did people get in the 2011 TSA? I got 39/50, was pretty pleased but I know I can do better. T

The time limit is horrible, you have to guess the last few!! I think I just need to work on working quicker and more efficiently.
7. Does anybody have any example essays for part 2 of the TSA, as I'm struggling to get an idea of how to write it?
8. (Original post by jimpop)
Does anybody have any example essays for part 2 of the TSA, as I'm struggling to get an idea of how to write it?
Yeah, if anyone has any idea what's they're looking for in an essay pls feel free to share!

Posted from TSR Mobile
9. Can't seem to get the hang of it atm
10. (Original post by MrBowcat)
How the hell do you 2008 Q37????
It's in the post above you
11. (Original post by sellerofdreams)
Yeah, if anyone has any idea what's they're looking for in an essay pls feel free to share!

Posted from TSR Mobile
In an essay all they look for is whether you have an ability to consider both sides of an argument and come to an informed conclusion
12. Hi all,

Can anyone explain Q31 in the 2012 paper?
I've been staring at it for 15 minutes and I just can't make any sense of that graph.

Cheers.
13. For the essay my teacher recommended sticking to your point mainly, and having an interesting judgement which you can justify clearly, rather than trying to give a balanced view in 30 mins...What do y'all think?
14. (Original post by ventus)
Hi all,

Can anyone explain Q31 in the 2012 paper?
I've been staring at it for 15 minutes and I just can't make any sense of that graph.

Cheers.

So the people in the top left quadrant achieved A-C in their mocks and actual exams so the mock correctly predicted their result, the people in the bottom right quadrant achieved other grades in their mocks and actual exams so the mock correctly predicted their result.

Therefore: (90+60)/(90+25+25+60) = 150/200 = 75% - E
15. I'm struggling with a few questions on the specimen TSA. Can anyone explain the answers to 24, 48 and 50? I got 24B, 48E and 50B, when the right answers were A-C-D.
16. Does anyone know the cut off point for the TSA, or whether there exists a cut off point? I know Keble's last year was roughly 61 after conversion - is that consistent with the other colleges?
17. Hi, I would like to ask you all whether anyone can give me some tip where to find some nice essay questions similar to those that appear in this dreadful thing! I am aware of all of those past year question that are available on the Cambridge Assessment website, but I'm looking for more to get more practice. Thanks, mates!

(I'm an international prospective undergrad applying to Philosophy & Linguistics, Magdalen College)
18. (Original post by harveenjudge)
Does anyone know the cut off point for the TSA, or whether there exists a cut off point? I know Keble's last year was roughly 61 after conversion - is that consistent with the other colleges?
The cutoff depends on the course. However, I'm pretty sure the cutoff for each course is consistent throughout all the colleges because
whole 3 applicants for each place thing is uni-wide, and they will reallocate applicants to different colleges afterwards as necessary.
19. (Original post by Djangoo)
For the essay my teacher recommended sticking to your point mainly, and having an interesting judgement which you can justify clearly, rather than trying to give a balanced view in 30 mins...What do y'all think?
Noooooo!

This is the worst possible approach to any argument. It's the Nigel Farage approach to arguments! That completely defeats the purpose of the TSA.

The TSA is trying to assess whether you can deconstruct arguments, interpret the assumptions that people absent mindedly make when they make certain statements etc. If you were to approach the essay like a bull in a china shop then in my opinion a college would be less than impressed - even if your TSA score was stellar!

Think about it from a college tutor perspective. Do they want someone at Oxford who has one opinion that they defend to the death whilst refusing to consider other ideas? Or do they want someone who is reasoned - thinks about both sides, ACCEPTS that there are two sides to any argument and tries to work it out.

To put this in context, last year I think one of the essay questions was about legalising drugs.

Most people would automatically think "Drugs are bad" and assume there's no way they should be legal. So there's a one sided argument, as your teacher is suggesting.

But better candidates would say in their essay - look drugs are bad, and that's why they're illegal. They would argue this case and then say....

On the other hand...

Legalising drugs would mean the gov't could control the quality of what is produced
Legalising drugs would generate tax revenue to deal with the drug problem
Legalising drugs could give us a national register of heroin users so we can force them to get rehab instead of hiding for fear of prosecution
Legalising drugs would eliminate the black market trade of drugs so there would be less other crime related to drugs (murder/theft)

Just imagine a college tutor reading one piece which is a huge anti-drug tirade which says something simple and barely considered like "well...there could be tourism benefits" versus one which explores both arguments as much as possible given the time frame.

Who would you want at your college?
20. Hi guys,

Does anyone know if section 1 and 2 are separate? i.e will the invigilators give you 1hr30mins for the multiple choice questions then take away that answer sheet and then give you the essay questions?

Many thanks,
Josh

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