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Chances for MA/Msc in History at Oxbridge/LSE/King's? Watch

    • Thread Starter

    So, I've got two bachelor degrees from the University of British Columbia in Canada.

    I have a Bachelor of Arts, Major History... received a Class I standing which is an A average of around 81% finished in '08

    Also a Bachelor of Education, also Class I. It was mostly pass/fail at UBC, but the few graded courses that I had clocked in at about an average of 91%. Also ended up winning three B.Ed graduating awards. It was a concentration in History. I graduated in August '10.

    I'm currently living in London teaching Secondary School, and well, academia is calling back to me. I want to do a PhD in history, so step one is a Master's in History.

    few questions:

    1) How likely am I to get into these schools' programs? Some very appealing ones... MSc in the History of International Relations at LSE looks stellar, as does the Modern History at both LSE and King's... I also like the look of Economic and Social at Oxford.

    Finding what the equivalences of my qualifications are in the UK hasn't exactly been too clear or straightforward. So any advice would be great.

    2) Will admissions care about my B.Ed? Or will they just be looking at my History degree? My references from my B.Ed will be glowing... but it's not as relevant?

    3) Will they take my work experience into account? I've been teaching history and doing very well... taking a very academic approach to my lessons and doing significant research in the process of planning. Will they even care?

    Having talked with admissions tutors at both LSE and Oxford, I know a little about this.

    I have gathered that it is equally hard to get into Oxford and LSE. Neither have many applications per place, with LSE having 4 and Oxford 3. However, they say that their applicants are of a very high standard because history master's are more serious options than business and IR masters where people tend to apply for the hell of it.

    At LSE they told me that for the MSc History of International Relations most successful applicants have either a first class degree or a high 2:1. They said they give the occasional offer to people with midish 2:1's if they show great potential and relevent work experience. Afterall, this is a masters in IR history not conventional history, so work experience helps in the policital field. They said the programme is competitive because it is the only one of its type in the world, for most history masters focus on a period or region, rather than IR - while US degrees are mostly PhD's.

    Oxford have a more clearly stated admissions criteria (compared to LSE's 'good degree' criteria). They say that you need at least a 67 (high 2:1) and many successful applicants have first class degrees. They have 3 applications per place.

    In short, your grades seem to match the criteria so i would apply to both and go for where you want to. The LSE degree is best if you want a career in politics, especially in diplomacy and IR research, for you focus mostly on political decision making. The Oxford masters is more specialised and people i know on the course studied economics or history - although im not sure what people go into afterwards. For PhD's, do the degree in the field you want to specialise in and choose the uni that has the best professors in your field.
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