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    (Original post by Peterhouse Admissions)
    Hmm interesting views. I would say that how people come across in interview isn't how they are in real life and often the seemingly grumpy, uncooperative or combative interviewer is actually the one giving the highest marks. The interview is no more and less important than any other part of the process.
    And there was me at the time believing the Cambridge "hype" that they were training the interviewers not to be "grumpy, uncooperative or combative". Your words not mine. As I say look outside of your box and let's level the playing field here. Good luck to all 2017 applicants especially those without privilege and the resources to practice interview technique. Cambridge ironically developed within me the ability to sense injustice and try to politely make my point. Thank you.
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    Hi there

    I am a Scottish student who would like to apply to read English literature, and to be entirely honest I don't think my subject choice is best suited for this course, to say the least... I take English, art & design, chemistry, biology, physics.
    Some college websites mention that people applying for English with science/maths subjects are at no disadvantage, how true is this? Is it rare for someone for be admitted with only English literature and no other related subjects like history or a language?
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    Hi is a personal statement where I talk about engineering examples and why I find them interesting and why I find it is important for engineering good enough or do you want academic/extra curricular instead of talking about engineering.


    This is for an engineering application
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    (Original post by metrize)
    Hi is a personal statement where I talk about engineering examples and why I find them interesting and why I find it is important for engineering good enough or do you want academic/extra curricular instead of talking about engineering.


    This is for an engineering application
    Hi. There. I remember spending weeks on mine this time last year so I do empathise. Trust me when I say not to worry too much about university applications, it all comes good in the end. In terms of your statement remember to write it to cover all five unis and not just Cambridge, that's important.
    I don't think there is "a one size fits all" here. I used two thirds describing my enthusiasm for engineering and one third extra curricular! I'm not sure how much Cambridge are interested in extra curricular but other unis definitely are. Don't lie about anything, you will be asked about something on it at interview. The main thing over the next twelve months is to focus on your studies whilst maintaining hobbies and interests. Don't stress it, if you get the grades you will end up with choice at university. The very best of luck 👍
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    (Original post by LouKayenta05)
    I'm hoping to apply for theology, religion, and philosophy of religion and will need to take the TAA on November 2nd. However, a school charity trip to Tanzania has been booked for over a year over this date, and I won't be able to sit the exam then. Is there any way to take it before/after my trip? Is anyone else in this situation?
    (Original post by Peterhouse Admissions)
    You're not the only person in this situation. The collegiate University (i.e. all the colleges acting together) hasn't yet decided what we'll do about such cases but we will do so soon.
    We have an answer - your question was very timely!

    If you are unable to find a test centre (there's one in Dar es Salaam) or make alternative arrangements with the Admissions Testing Service then it will be at your preference College's discretion (in liaison with the Director of Admisisons for the Colleges) whether to allow you to sit a special at-interview version of the TAA or whethr to reject your application as incomplete.
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    (Original post by ageshallnot)
    Though clearly not in this case. Given Peterhouse's reportedly less than stellar handling of more than one engineering candidate in 2015-16, including 210555, perhaps a gentle investigation might be in order.
    (Original post by 210555)
    Hmm hmm bless! Don't you just love the supposedly power of marketing! As I say to everyone, let's level the playing field here. Practice interview technique. And to all those embedded into the the Cambridge culture, look outside. One day a Cambridge cohort representative of the student population would truly be fab! I fear it is a long way off. I will not give up on giving realistic advice based upon recent actual experience and not just out of touch "spin". I do however thank you for your reply, we are allowed to to completely disagree. Nevertheless I thank you for your input.
    We do keep an eye on our interviewers, looking out for aberrant scores and the responses to our anonymous post-interview feedback questionnaire (which includes the subject). If candidates genuinely feel they have not been treated fairly then they can/should make a formal complaint with the College which can be escalted if necessary to be considered at a University level. In addition, candidates are welcome to request feedback on their interview performance if they wish (for the most quick and useful feedback, candidates should request it within one month but can request feedback up until the 1st September in the year after they interviewed when files for unsuccesful candidates are destroyed). Part of the job of the Admisisons Tutors and the Admissions Coordinators is to make sure that the proceedures are followed and no candidates are disadvantaged.

    I'd once again like to point out our official advice that interview preparation is neither expected nor particularly encouraged and extensive preparation can often work to the candidate's detriment. Interview performance is considered alongside all of the other information we have about a candidate and is no more and no less important than anything else; candidates are not accepted or rejected solely on the basis of their interview performance.
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    (Original post by Stanspam)
    I would love to apply for Cambridge medicine, but realistically I know I have no chance applying this year with my AS-level results. My stats for unreformed subjects are:
    Maths- 90, 100, 73
    Latin- 80, 78

    I'm planning on retaking the two maths modules and both of the latin papers (I'm not quite sure what kind of UMS I need in Latin for medicine- or if it's even worth resitting at all) and I'm hoping to increase my UMS to 95+ for both subjects and get A*s in both biology and chemistry and apply post A-level.

    I know I'll be retaking a lot of papers, but it has been difficult for me this year- a close family member passed away in February and I also ended up missing 2 weeks of school because of it and the situation at home wasn't too good either. My school is aware of why I missed school, but not about my home life. Would it be possible to mention these situations as extenuating circumstances? Is it even worth for me to consider applying?

    I also come from a very good school. Will this put me at even more of a disadvantage when taken into consideration?

    Sorry for the long message and thank you for taking the time to read it.
    Hi, thanks for asking.

    For Medicine, we won't be interested in your scores (good or bad) in Latin. You;d be better off focusing on your sciences. I'm sorry to hear of your problems, this is exactly the sort of thing that the Extenuating Circumstances Form is for. Our use of contextual information about candidates and their schools is to allow us to properly assess candidates who have suffered disadvantage, not to discriminate against those that haven't.
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    (Original post by Blancosdos)
    What if you moved from a school (from GCSE) (which has a low acceptance at Oxbridge,high percentage of free school meals ) to a school much better

    Will GCSE context still be taken into consideration.
    Good question, thanks for asking! Yes it will, we have information on both GCSE school and sixth form.
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    (Original post by Friendly Forever)
    Hi there

    I am a Scottish student who would like to apply to read English literature, and to be entirely honest I don't think my subject choice is best suited for this course, to say the least... I take English, art & design, chemistry, biology, physics.
    Some college websites mention that people applying for English with science/maths subjects are at no disadvantage, how true is this? Is it rare for someone for be admitted with only English literature and no other related subjects like history or a language?
    Hi,

    Your subject combination might seem a little unorthodox but is less so than you probably think. We could start a long debate about what is and isn't related to English but rest assured that there's nothing stopping you making a successful application.
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    (Original post by metrize)
    Hi is a personal statement where I talk about engineering examples and why I find them interesting and why I find it is important for engineering good enough or do you want academic/extra curricular instead of talking about engineering.


    This is for an engineering application
    I'm afraid there's no one way to write a personal statement so giving advice is tricky! Remember to thing of it like a love letter to your subject and then you might see that elements of all the things you've mentioned (provided the extra-curriculars are relevant) may be appropriate.
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    (Original post by Peterhouse Admissions)
    We do keep an eye on our interviewers, looking out for aberrant scores and the responses to our anonymous post-interview feedback questionnaire (which includes the subject). If candidates genuinely feel they have not been treated fairly then they can make a formal complaint with the College which can be escalted if necessary to be considered at a University level. In addition, candidates are welcome to request feedback on their interview performance if they wish (for the most quick and useful feedback, candidates should request it within one month but can request feedback up until the 1st September in the year after they interviewed when files for unsuccesful candidates are destroyed). Part of the job of the Admisisons Tutors and the Admissions Coordinators is to make sure that the proceedures are followed and no candidates are disadvantaged.

    I'd once again like to point out our official advice that interview preparation is neither expected nor particularly encouraged and extensive preparation can often work to the candidate's detriment. Interview performance is considered alongside all of the other information we have about a candidate and is no more and no less important than anything else; candidates are not accepted or rejected solely on the basis of their interview performance.
    Thank you for the response. I was seventeen and had spent months preparing my application alongside others I know. I believed what you post as a response and watched the Cambridge YouTube videos. My experience was not this at all in December 2015 and it would appear, in the case of engineering, I perhaps was not alone? This is just about the engineering application process, I must emphasise this. Realistically at 17, you come out shell shocked and I was not reflective enough or mature enough to complain. My honest feeling at the time was to get out of Cambridge pronto, it was horrible. In my view hostile and combative interviewers in no way get the best out of candidates. I was the minor and you were the ones in a position of power! I do not believe all interviews are like this but it happens and students should be aware of this. The responsibility lies with Cambridge to get it right and not a 17 year old to complain which realistically is never going to happen. I asked my parents why other interviewers didn't speak up and they just said "politics happens in the workplace." My posts are about honest advice to level the playing field and to help those with no real knowledge of Cambridge. I encourage anyone to apply and wish honest posts such as these were available this time last year.If it also checks future behaviour of individuals ( who I hope are in the minority) for this years applicants, then I have done something positive and in my opinion, that is a win win situation. Thank you and best of luck to ALL this years.applicants!
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    Hi looking to study history and politics. I
    got 3 A's and a C at AS level.

    A in History (95/100 raw marks)
    A in German (95% UMS)
    A in Maths (85% UMS)
    C in economics (A in one exam E in other exam)

    Do I have any chance of getting an interview or would I have to rely on a really good performance in the admissions test?


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    (Original post by Strimpy)
    Hi looking to study history and politics. I
    got 3 A's and a C at AS level.

    A in History (95/100 raw marks)
    A in German (95% UMS)
    A in Maths (85% UMS)
    C in economics (A in one exam E in other exam)

    Do I have any chance of getting an interview or would I have to rely on a really good performance in the admissions test?


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    We can't say much without seeing the full details but you'd have a good chance of interview.
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    (Original post by Peterhouse Admissions)
    We can't much without seeing the full details but you'd have a good chance of interview.
    Thanks so much for replying 😊 I guess this means you believe it would be worth me applying? I go to a state school where no one really goes to Oxbridge so not really sure about it.

    If it helps my modules are:

    History Unit 1 - 50/50 raw marks
    History Unit 2 - 45/50 raw marks
    German Speaking - 100% UMS
    German Writing - 91% UMS
    Maths C1 - 80% UMS
    Maths C2 - 80% UMS
    Maths S1 - 90% UMS
    Economics Unit 1 - 53/70 (A) raw marks
    Economics Unit 2 - 33/70 (E) raw marks






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    (Original post by Strimpy)
    Thanks so much for replying 😊 I guess this means you believe it would be worth me applying? I go to a state school where no one really goes to Oxbridge so not really sure about it.

    If it helps my modules are:

    History Unit 1 - 50/50 raw marks
    History Unit 2 - 45/50 raw marks
    German Speaking - 100% UMS
    German Writing - 91% UMS
    Maths C1 - 80% UMS
    Maths C2 - 80% UMS
    Maths S1 - 90% UMS
    Economics Unit 1 - 53/70 (A) raw marks
    Economics Unit 2 - 33/70 (E) raw marks

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    Certainly worth applying if you're interested - you'd be a realistic and competitive candidate. If you want a Schools Liaison Officer to visit your school and help younger years then you or your teachers can email [email protected].
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    I am considering making an application for a deferred place and wondered how much information should be in the personal statement about plans for my gap year. Obviously, at this stage the plans would be aspirational ie I want to work to earn enough money to do some archaeology volunteering on digs ( my interest is in ancient history). Do you think it would be better to wait until after my A level results to apply with more concrete plans in place? As well as wanting to use the year for archaeology, I also feel that I need to 'grow up' a bit more before university. Is that a poor reason for a gap year?

    Thank you.
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    (Original post by UGall)
    I am considering making an application for a deferred place and wondered how much information should be in the personal statement about plans for my gap year. Obviously, at this stage the plans would be aspirational ie I want to work to earn enough money to do some archaeology volunteering on digs ( my interest is in ancient history). Do you think it would be better to wait until after my A level results to apply with more concrete plans in place? As well as wanting to use the year for archaeology, I also feel that I need to 'grow up' a bit more before university. Is that a poor reason for a gap year?

    Thank you.
    Hi, another good question that's likely to be of interest to a lot of people. You aren't 'assesed' on your gap year plans in the same way we'd assess you on your A levels. We'd just want to see that you've thought about it a little and have some concrete ideas of what you want to do. We don't want you to have forgotten all your A levels but neither do we expect you to spend the whole year reading, as long as you keep in touch with your subject a bit. Your reasons for deferred entry seem reasonable.

    Your personal statement mgiht mention your plans a little, but we'd mostly like to hear about your academic interests in Archaeology. If you have a good paper application but we're curious about your gap year, we'd ask you about it at interview.
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    That's very helpful. Thank you for your time.
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    (Original post by Peterhouse Admissions)
    Certainly worth applying if you're interested - you'd be a realistic and competitive candidate. If you want a Schools Liaison Officer to visit your school and help younger years then you or your teachers can email [email protected].
    Ok thank you so much for your help ☺️


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    (Original post by Peterhouse Admissions)
    We have an answer - your question was very timely!

    If you are unable to find a test centre (there's one in Dar es Salaam) or make alternative arrangements with the Admissions Testing Service then it will be at your preference College's discretion (in liaison with the Director of Admisisons for the Colleges) whether to allow you to sit a special at-interview version of the TAA or whethr to reject your application as incomplete.
    Thank you so much for your response, it's much appreciated! I'll begin looking into my options.
 
 
 
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