How much does your school help with Oxbridge applications? Watch

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Lurker
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#1
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#1
My school are ok with UCAS applications in general, but don't treat Oxbridge applications any differently to others. They arrange trips to some universities, but not usually any outside Wales, certainly not Oxbridge. No practice interviews or anything. So I was just wondering how many people here get extra help when applying to Oxbridge.
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Linda
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#2
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Didn't get any help. Although my school did have some UCAS person coming over to talk to us in November, after the Oxbridge deadline.
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Brown Patrick Bateman
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(Original post by Lurker)
My school are ok with UCAS applications in general, but don't treat Oxbridge applications any differently to others. They arrange trips to some universities, but not usually any outside Wales, certainly not Oxbridge. No practice interviews or anything. So I was just wondering how many people here get extra help when applying to Oxbridge.
"Yeah your UCAS form's alright. Good luck".
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Nylex
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#4
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We didn't have much help. The mock interview I had didn't help at all and apart from that, we were only told some really obvious things to do.
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nero076
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#5
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This is the big advantage public school applicants have over state school applicants. In private schools the whole process is geared towards getting in to a posh uni (ie oxbridge) and it's structured towards getting in- the average state school is only going to have a few people go oxbridge each year, so its hardly worth them putting on lots of mock interviews etc. My college's priority seemed to be get as many people to have applied to any universty by 15 Jan or whenever deadline is as possible.
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Lucy
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#6
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I was given a mock interview which was nothing like what happened in the real thing. It was good in that it got me communicating in an 'uncomfortable' situation (the doctor who interviewed me was renowned for making previous students cry ). Other than that, a few medical students and myself who were applying to oxbridge had a few get togethers to discuss issues but that wasn't organised through the school, it was more our own incentive.
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Sazzle
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#7
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Last year I was still at school and we had a bit of help in the form of practise interviews (mine was with my current boss - which is kinda weird!) and 'Oxbridge classes' - these consisted of 1 period a week with the headmaster (who is ex Cambridge) doing old Oxbridge problems - quiz type things. The headmaster also guided us on college choice which was handy but I have to say the extra help was of little use. Out of 22 applicants that year only 1 person got in (and that was through the pool) compared to 15 applicants the year before with 10 getting in. As a result of our miserable failure the school organised a trip to Cambridge and more classes as well as getting all the info possible out of us on our interview experiences.

This year I had little help other than them providing a reference. My school has a preference for sending people to Cambridge so they had little interest in me. I think only about 10 people applied but I haven't yet heard how they got on.
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Lucy
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#8
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(Original post by Sazzle)
My school has a preference for sending people to Cambridge so they had little interest in me.
Exactly the same for me. I think I was the third person to apply in the history of the school to study medicine at Oxford. My school was more of a hindrance than a help - only about 4 weeks after I had handed in my form was it sent off because they lost both my UCAS form and signature slip.
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Alexander
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#9
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I go to an independent school where usually about a third of each year applies to Oxbridge, and I only got one mock interview and that was about it. Independent schools do not all have intensive Oxbridge coaching.
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Tek
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#10
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(Original post by Alexander)
I go to an independent school where usually about a third of each year applies to Oxbridge, and I only got one mock interview and that was about it. Independent schools do not all have intensive Oxbridge coaching.
A school with fewer Oxbridge candidates may be able to give more attention to them. A school with 50 odd applicants can hardly afford to spend a large amount fo time discussing each individual's application.
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crana
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#11
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I agree... my school had at least 50 applications in for med/vet/physio/oxbridge and it was all a huge rush.

I go to an independent girls' school in the midlands..

help I got.. very little with P.S. or forms as my tutors not very helpful... practice interview, which was ok, but completely unlike real thing. errm. extension classes for chem/bio - these arent specifically oxbridge, they're open to anyone who cares enough to come.. no help choosing college or anything like that.. couple of guest speakers on "Ucas", "interviews" etc who were all extremely crap
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Kalypso
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#12
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One of the main differences I have noticed (in Oxford) is that a lot of people with private school backgrounds are a lot more confident in talks and seminars etc... as their education has encouraged speaking and debating as a form of teaching, and this develops good presentational skills. This is a generalisation based on nothing more than my own experience, but having come from a school where the only chance of getting decent grades was to keep your head down, work and try not to be noticed, I would say that although not all private schools explicitly offer oxbridge coaching, to a large extent the entire educational ethos is good preparation for interviews that is just not present in a school anything like an inner city comp.
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jediknight007
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#13
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Well, they predict higher grades for the applicants. My friend was expecting to be predicted AABB and my college predicted him AAAA for Computing at Cambridge.
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fayzd
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#14
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well, my college was lovely.

I applied post A level, so really they had no responsibility. But my english teacher, who is extremely busy, also head of department, still found time to mark my essays, help with personal statement, and give me a 2 hour mock interview.

Bless.
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Perdurabo
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#15
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#15
My school was pretty crap. I had to keep badgering my year head to get the forms posted. Then i had a mock interview that couldn't have been further from what the real thing was really like!
If anything, my school sent me into the interview in a nervous state of mind when in reality the whole oxbridge experience wasn't at all that bad.
Then again, if i gat rejected this week it obviously did go bad!
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Lurker
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#16
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(Original post by fayzd)
well, my college was lovely.

I applied post A level, so really they had no responsibility. But my english teacher, who is extremely busy, also head of department, still found time to mark my essays, help with personal statement, and give me a 2 hour mock interview.

Bless.
Ooh! Yeah, I should've mentioned that - my school doesn't seem to mind if anybody gets to Oxbridge, but I did have a wonderful History teacher, also head of department, who took the time to mark my essays for me. I'm also post A level, so it was extra nice of her.

I wouldn't really expect my school to make any extra effort for me, (being post A level), I was just talking in general about Oxbridge applicants because several of my friends applied last year.
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akk713
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#17
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#17
I have a counsellor at school who gave me a lot of individual help on my PS, but I don't think it helped a lot to my cambridge application because they wouldn't bother anyway. I had two mock interviews which were incredibly unlike the real one (they asked me of any scientist i admired and what I thought about cloning =.=)
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manu
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#18
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i've applied post abitur (german a-levels) and had to explain to my english teacher why i needed a reference and what had to be in it. he wrote one but couldnt be bothered to translate it, which i ended up doing and he then signed it. he didnt know how the collegiate system works and all the lot, but thats completely normal in germany: we dont get any help in applying to unis, thats because there arent any interviews and the three things deciding which uni you get to are:

1. the marks you got (everybody applies post alevels)
2. if you live near the uni
3. how long you have been waiting four a place

my commander (hauptmann) at the bundeswehr first wouldnt let me go for the interview but after some arguing i got 1,5 days off which ment it was all pretty much fly over->interview->fly back...
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loftx
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#19
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#19
My school (state school) didn't give all that much help, but it was better than nothing. Bascially they just got all the Oxbridge people together and gave us the application forms and said how to fill them in. We also got practice interviews but anyone could have one regardless of where they were applying.
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claire1985
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#20
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I go to a state school where I think about 40/120 people in my year applied to Oxbridge. I pulled out last minute and I wish I'd stayed in because they are so much more interested in you if you apply there-they take notice of where you get offers from and if you get an offer from oxbridge no doubt you will be treated like a godess when we go back to school in Jan! hehe
xxx
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