Cambridge Human, Social and Political Sciences (HSPS) Students and Applicants

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    Hey, just wondering what everyone thought of the new human, social and political sciences course starting 2013. I just about had a mini heart attack when i read on the arch & anth page that they were replacing it, but having read this page: http://www.joh.cam.ac.uk/human-socia...tical-sciences I now think it seems a nice course, and very flexible!
    So, what do you all think?
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    It looks great. I also panicked when I read that they were replacing arch and anth as that's what I was going to apply for, but with HSPS there's more variety in the first year which is nice. One thing I am concerned about, though, is that it will be extremely competitive to get a place on the new course. Arch and anth was a relatively small subject, but it's basically merging with PPS which is one of the most popular courses. Surely that'll mean there will be an even larger number of students applying for more or less the same amount of places?
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    (Original post by Lumen)
    It looks great. I also panicked when I read that they were replacing arch and anth as that's what I was going to apply for, but with HSPS there's more variety in the first year which is nice. One thing I am concerned about, though, is that it will be extremely competitive to get a place on the new course. Arch and anth was a relatively small subject, but it's basically merging with PPS which is one of the most popular courses. Surely that'll mean there will be an even larger number of students applying for more or less the same amount of places?

    Yes, it does seem as if there might be less places, but they might just keep the same number since the courses weren't massive before? :confused: Also, I was worrying about personal statements, as in will we have to make our personal statements very generalised to cover most of the subjects or if we'll mainly be taking arch & anth modules can we just write it as if the course were only arch & anth? I emailed someone at Cambridge concerning the arch & anth open day too, just to check it was still happening if the course was being merged. He hasn't got back to me yet so I'm still not sure. The course does look very good though!
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    YAY!! I've found some other people interested in this course!! I've needed someone to discuss it with but most of my friends haven't got past the "so what's anthropology again?" phase!!
    HSPS looks brilliant as you can focus on what your main interest but mix and match with a bit of other subjects too
    I reckon it suits me better than the old arch and anth course because I can devote more time to social anth without having to do loads of archaelogy and biological anth. too which I'm not so bothered about.
    I hadn't actually realised that the whole PPS faculty has vanished and been merged into the arch and anth though....I swear politics is a ridiculously competitive subject so we'll be up against all of them too.
    Do you think they'll try and take a balance of people with interests in all of the 5 aspects of the course? Otherwise I feel we'll be rather eclipsed by all the hordes of politics applicants! :eek:
    Monday's open day is definitely going ahead by the way! I got a confirmation email last night from them
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    I love the course as well
    But I guess it will be really competitive, especially the IR and Psychology route

    And how on earth are we supposed to write a decent PS without ruining our chances at other unis which have don't have such broad courses?
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    (Original post by TardisGirl04)
    I swear politics is a ridiculously competitive subject so we'll be up against all of them too.
    Do you think they'll try and take a balance of people with interests in all of the 5 aspects of the course? Otherwise I feel we'll be rather eclipsed by all the hordes of politics applicants! :eek:

    (Original post by Welsh Lady)
    I love the course as well
    But I guess it will be really competitive, especially the IR and Psychology route

    And how on earth are we supposed to write a decent PS without ruining our chances at other unis which have don't have such broad courses?
    Yay! More people

    Yeah, I have pretty much the same concerns, but hopefully they'll at least try to balance it so they get a fair amount of people doing the different aspects? I was worrying about personal statements too, since most of the courses I apply too will be specifically arch/anth based, so it could be hard to still focus on that while also making it relevant to the other option i chooses.

    Oh well though, I'm sure they'll take all of that kin dof thing into consideration. Also, I'm so excited for the open day!
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    (Original post by JumbleJumble)
    Yay! More people

    Yeah, I have pretty much the same concerns, but hopefully they'll at least try to balance it so they get a fair amount of people doing the different aspects? I was worrying about personal statements too, since most of the courses I apply too will be specifically arch/anth based, so it could be hard to still focus on that while also making it relevant to the other option i chooses.

    Oh well though, I'm sure they'll take all of that kin dof thing into consideration. Also, I'm so excited for the open day!
    If you find out some relavant information at the open day, let us know, ok?
    When is the open day, anyway?
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    (Original post by Welsh Lady)
    If you find out some relavant information at the open day, let us know, ok?
    When is the open day, anyway?
    The open day is on Monday yeah, of course if there's anything useful I'll put it on here
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    (Original post by TardisGirl04)
    most of my friends haven't got past the "so what's anthropology again?" phase!!
    ^hahaa, this is exactly my problem!!

    I was initially quite concerned when I saw the course change :eek: but I quite like that it has been made slightly more flexible in terms of subject range.

    I'm also going to the arch+anth open day on monday so hopefully they will be able to shed some light on how this will effect the application and interview process. Personally, i'm just a little confused as to whether if we indicate from the beginning of the process that we are applying for the history/archaeology/anthropology modules, we are still expected to be prepared in politics/psychology etc? :confused:

    and yeah, writing personal statements to fit the other universities which still have arch+anth degrees is going to be interesting!
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    I believe this might be useful for you guys: http://www.trin.cam.ac.uk/index.php?pageid=86&subid=3
    Trinity College have already updated their website and say that "Students applying to the HSPS programme at Trinity will be asked to indicate their interests in some more detail on a questionnaire they will be sent".

    I guess it would make sense for all the colleges to do this, as it might solve the problem of writing a personal statement for such a broad course.
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    is this course new? i wondered why i had never noticed it before. it seems like a wonderful alternative to ppe at oxford, for those that are more interested in people and politics, and slightly less interested in economics, and more partial to cambridge!
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    (Original post by bíborcsiga)
    I believe this might be useful for you guys: http://www.trin.cam.ac.uk/index.php?pageid=86&subid=3
    Trinity College have already updated their website and say that "Students applying to the HSPS programme at Trinity will be asked to indicate their interests in some more detail on a questionnaire they will be sent".

    I guess it would make sense for all the colleges to do this, as it might solve the problem of writing a personal statement for such a broad course.
    This would be so much easier than writing to include everything!
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    I'm an Admission Tutor at a Cambridge College (and a Social Anthropologist) so am happy to help with any concerns prospective applicants have about this 'New' HSPS Tripos... Nothing has been 'cut' from the courses on offer - HSPS is just the new title that covers the more exciting way to study a combination of what is already on offer in 'Arch & Anth' and 'PPS'/International Relations. For a basic overview of what the course actually entails and the exciting range of options that can be studied, do look closely at the websites of St John's, Kings and Trinity that previous posts have mentioned. There is also very useful information on many other College websites.
    Meantime - if you are a keen student of politics and power, history, society, culture, people... the kind of person interested in those big questions about what it is to be human, culture and communication, the significance of relationships between past-present, nature-culture, or the world we live in and the one we are (re)creating... rest assured, Cambridge has even more on offer than it did last year... Of course I'm, obviously biased, but do check out what HSPS is before you go further with your UCAS choices... find out more - and apply if you find it interesting!
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    (Original post by Lilempress)
    ^hahaa, this is exactly my problem!!

    I was initially quite concerned when I saw the course change :eek: but I quite like that it has been made slightly more flexible in terms of subject range.

    I'm also going to the arch+anth open day on monday so hopefully they will be able to shed some light on how this will effect the application and interview process. Personally, i'm just a little confused as to whether if we indicate from the beginning of the process that we are applying for the history/archaeology/anthropology modules, we are still expected to be prepared in politics/psychology etc? :confused:

    and yeah, writing personal statements to fit the other universities which still have arch+anth degrees is going to be interesting!
    No, if its anything like PPS :P. Most people only really know much about two of the subjects; i.e. politics and sociology, and then pick two papers based on some very light reading after being accepted. This isn't really a problem though, most people tend to enjoy their choices- if you like sociology you will probably find the social anth paper interesting, or if you like psychology- you may also really enjoy bio anth or education.
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    This course looks UH-Mazing!

    Would I be OK applying for Politics at the four other universities .. but going down the Politics/IR/Sociology/Anthropology route at Cambridge?
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    Also, what AS levels are you all doing?

    I'm doing History, English Literature, Economics and Politics
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    (Original post by soindie)
    Also, what AS levels are you all doing?

    I'm doing History, English Literature, Economics and Politics
    I'm doing French, Spanish, History, English Literature and Critical thinking.


    There seemed to be a real mix of subjects among the people at the open day -quite a lot of people doing sciences but also loads of english lit/history.

    The open day was AMAZING course looks really good!!
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    Hi guys!

    I'm a student from Hong Kong and I'll be applying to universities coming October. I'm very keen on applying for subjects related to Politics/IR - LSE IR and UCL's ESPS courses are currently on top of my list.

    I've been scrolling through a few Oxbridge courses and the HSPS course from Cambridge seems to jump out the most. Cambridge is obviously commonly perceived to be less humanities-based - but rankings seem to suggest a more well-balanced view. Would anyone mind laying out what Politics at Cambridge is like, and (if possible) how it compares with other universities? I'm aware that HSPS is a new course, so this would be more applicable to PPS students?

    Thanks very much!
    James
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    This course looks amazing, I'm more interested in the biological/social anthropology side so am quite worried about competing with all the politics students with only 175 places..

    I'm taking Biology Chemistry History Maths and French at AS level
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    (Original post by iammichealjackson)
    If your interested in bio/soc anth you can also apply for Arch and Anth? The only difference seems to be that through arch and anth you can take the interdisciplinary paper... but you might be more interested in doing 4 completely different subjects anyway...
    I think you may have misunderstood? The HSPS course is replacing the arch/anth course, so it's not an eithe or option. I may have misunderstod you though :confused:

    You can do virtually exactly the same course within HSPS though, there's just the option of other things too.
 
 
 
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