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    Hi all!
    I have a real dilemma on my hands that no amount of deliberation can solve. I got 9A* and 3A in my GCSE exams and (hopefully) achieved AAAA in my AS exams, which include history, maths, geography and literature. Now, I have always been interested in law and studying at Oxford, but despite my confidence I just do not feel I would be a competitive enough applicant to have a real chance at attaining a place - my personal statement, including work experience etc... is not 'outstanding', but 'good'. ~10% of applicants get an offer, making law one of the most competitive courses.
    I have an interest in all my different subjects, but in particular history. I am extremely well read in history (I like to think so ), and I thoroughly enjoy studying it. In law, it seems from what I have read that attaining a place at Oxford would be a major step up, as it is such a competitive industry. You can then, once graduating, do the GDL (which can be funded by large law firms) and then train to become a solicitor. Recently I spoke to a solicitor who came to visit my school, and she accentuated how important your university is when applying for jobs in law. She explained how her daughter had studied history at Cambridge (with the intention of converting after), and then had no trouble landing a job in London - she did state how this elitism is wrong, but it's the way it is. I know I would have a much, much higher chance of attaining a place to study history than I would law, it's fact really (~33% for history). I am interested in both subjects, so it's not like I'd be disappointed studying either. Furthermore, law is arguably one of the toughest degrees (lowest % of 1st I believe), and so the solicitor said doing the GDL is... not easier, as it's very intense, but doing another degree and then converting takes pressure off you. Attaining a higher class in history, I am led to believe, is easier.
    However, If i had to put it bluntly I would not be overly enthused about studying history elsewhere, I would much rather just study law. Therefore I wouldn't have to spend a year doing the GDL to be in the same position as I would be if I had done the law course. I know it seems that I am just trying to 'play the system' by trying to study history at Oxford for that 'university name', and perhaps I am - but I want every advantage I can get.
    So there's the issue, I am interested in two courses at various institutions, but unfortunately I can only have 1 personal statement... fantastic! I have considered saying for example how I have researched the Roman Empire, and then explaining how I was interested in the development of laws during this period. So in other words, in some parts of my statement mixing law and history. I fear, however, that this will water down a history and law applications, and I will get rejections everywhere. This is especially true as I intent to apply for Durham, Nottingham etc... I also have 2-3 weeks work experience in a solicitors.
    Would it be ridiculous to split my personal statement into 2, one for history and law. I do not think that's possible, and it sounds like a silly idea.
    I am not fussed about taking a year out If I fail to get into Oxford, but at the moment I feel a huge amount of pressure on me as I feel I'm in a real Oxford or bust situation. Any help?
    Also, I am sorry if I come across as arrogant or abrasive as I state how I wouldn't want to study history elsewhere. I'm spending £9000 a year and so I want it to be right for me, especially as I am going to have high predictions. I am not in anyway saying how history is a bad degree or how other universities are not worthy of me.
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    Why don't you email the admissions office asking if it would be possible to submit a separate personal statement as you're applying for two different degrees?


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    (Original post by Oddwatermelon)
    Hi all!
    I have a real dilemma on my hands that no amount of deliberation can solve. I got 9A* and 3A in my GCSE exams and (hopefully) achieved AAAA in my AS exams, which include history, maths, geography and literature. Now, I have always been interested in law and studying at Oxford, but despite my confidence I just do not feel I would be a competitive enough applicant to have a real chance at attaining a place - my personal statement, including work experience etc... is not 'outstanding', but 'good'. ~10% of applicants get an offer, making law one of the most competitive courses.
    I have an interest in all my different subjects, but in particular history. I am extremely well read in history (I like to think so ), and I thoroughly enjoy studying it. In law, it seems from what I have read that attaining a place at Oxford would be a major step up, as it is such a competitive industry. You can then, once graduating, do the GDL (which can be funded by large law firms) and then train to become a solicitor. Recently I spoke to a solicitor who came to visit my school, and she accentuated how important your university is when applying for jobs in law. She explained how her daughter had studied history at Cambridge (with the intention of converting after), and then had no trouble landing a job in London - she did state how this elitism is wrong, but it's the way it is. I know I would have a much, much higher chance of attaining a place to study history than I would law, it's fact really (~33% for history). I am interested in both subjects, so it's not like I'd be disappointed studying either. Furthermore, law is arguably one of the toughest degrees (lowest % of 1st I believe), and so the solicitor said doing the GDL is... not easier, as it's very intense, but doing another degree and then converting takes pressure off you. Attaining a higher class in history, I am led to believe, is easier.
    However, If i had to put it bluntly I would not be overly enthused about studying history elsewhere, I would much rather just study law. Therefore I wouldn't have to spend a year doing the GDL to be in the same position as I would be if I had done the law course. I know it seems that I am just trying to 'play the system' by trying to study history at Oxford for that 'university name', and perhaps I am - but I want every advantage I can get.
    So there's the issue, I am interested in two courses at various institutions, but unfortunately I can only have 1 personal statement... fantastic! I have considered saying for example how I have researched the Roman Empire, and then explaining how I was interested in the development of laws during this period. So in other words, in some parts of my statement mixing law and history. I fear, however, that this will water down a history and law applications, and I will get rejections everywhere. This is especially true as I intent to apply for Durham, Nottingham etc... I also have 2-3 weeks work experience in a solicitors.
    Would it be ridiculous to split my personal statement into 2, one for history and law. I do not think that's possible, and it sounds like a silly idea.
    I am not fussed about taking a year out If I fail to get into Oxford, but at the moment I feel a huge amount of pressure on me as I feel I'm in a real Oxford or bust situation. Any help?
    Also, I am sorry if I come across as arrogant or abrasive as I state how I wouldn't want to study history elsewhere. I'm spending £9000 a year and so I want it to be right for me, especially as I am going to have high predictions. I am not in anyway saying how history is a bad degree or how other universities are not worthy of me.
    Hi Oddwatermelon,

    You are quite right this is a bit of an awkward situation. I wouldn't recommend splitting your PS in 2 parts as it will look odd and not come together. You are at risk of people thinking that you are completely undecided on what you want to do and thus not motivated enough to achieve a good degree.
    However in your case you have 2 elected subjects that can link in together nicely. I think you should try and blend in the two so it is acceptable from either an history or law point of view.

    You might want to check this blog on Oxbridge PS.

    Hope this helps and if you have any questions don't hesitate to ask!

    UniAdmissions
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    (Original post by UniAdmissions)
    Hi Oddwatermelon,

    You are quite right this is a bit of an awkward situation. I wouldn't recommend splitting your PS in 2 parts as it will look odd and not come together. You are at risk of people thinking that you are completely undecided on what you want to do and thus not motivated enough to achieve a good degree.
    However in your case you have 2 elected subjects that can link in together nicely. I think you should try and blend in the two so it is acceptable from either an history or law point of view.

    You might want to check this blog on Oxbridge PS.

    Hope this helps and if you have any questions don't hesitate to ask!

    UniAdmissions
    Awesome, thank you very much for the advice! I am weary of trying to cater my PS to two courses, so I think I'm going to apply for history. However, that does depend on my AS results - I'll most probably end up not getting an A in history, in which case I'll apply for law elsewhere! Also, if I do get rejected I wouldn't be devastated about taking a year out, I think its a wise thing to do so you actually experience the 'real world' and build a bit of character outside of education.
    I do have another question though. I do not fully understand clearing. Is it possible that If my application for history at Oxford were to be rejected, on results day would I be able to apply for law through clearing at top universities? I am worried top universities won't offer places for clearing for such a competitive course. Do you have any knowledge about this?
    Thanks!
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    (Original post by Oddwatermelon)
    Awesome, thank you very much for the advice! I am weary of trying to cater my PS to two courses, so I think I'm going to apply for history. However, that does depend on my AS results - I'll most probably end up not getting an A in history, in which case I'll apply for law elsewhere! Also, if I do get rejected I wouldn't be devastated about taking a year out, I think its a wise thing to do so you actually experience the 'real world' and build a bit of character outside of education.
    I do have another question though. I do not fully understand clearing. Is it possible that If my application for history at Oxford were to be rejected, on results day would I be able to apply for law through clearing at top universities? I am worried top universities won't offer places for clearing for such a competitive course. Do you have any knowledge about this?
    Thanks!
    You are quite right in thinking that it is a bit of a gamble to apply to Law through Clearing...especially if you want a top university. It is most likely that all spaces will be already taken. I've had a quick look for past years and Durham and Nottingham don't appear in Clearing. The best thing for you to do is to wait and see what comes up. And Anyway you might get into Oxford straight away!
    Otherwise as you said a year out is never a bad thing. Lots have done it before and then got a place to their elected Uni. A year out can only add to your experience and maturity to undertake further studies.
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    (Original post by Oddwatermelon)
    Awesome, thank you very much for the advice! I am weary of trying to cater my PS to two courses, so I think I'm going to apply for history. However, that does depend on my AS results - I'll most probably end up not getting an A in history, in which case I'll apply for law elsewhere! Also, if I do get rejected I wouldn't be devastated about taking a year out, I think its a wise thing to do so you actually experience the 'real world' and build a bit of character outside of education.
    I do have another question though. I do not fully understand clearing. Is it possible that If my application for history at Oxford were to be rejected, on results day would I be able to apply for law through clearing at top universities? I am worried top universities won't offer places for clearing for such a competitive course. Do you have any knowledge about this?
    Thanks!
    What about applying for history at oxbridge, and the universities you'd be happy to do law in and then if you don't make oxbridge trying to swap your course at the other uni? Dunno if it's doable, but it's a thought...
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    (Original post by Oddwatermelon)
    Hi all!
    I have a real dilemma on my hands that no amount of deliberation can solve. I got 9A* and 3A in my GCSE exams and (hopefully) achieved AAAA in my AS exams, which include history, maths, geography and literature. Now, I have always been interested in law and studying at Oxford, but despite my confidence I just do not feel I would be a competitive enough applicant to have a real chance at attaining a place - my personal statement, including work experience etc... is not 'outstanding', but 'good'. ~10% of applicants get an offer, making law one of the most competitive courses.

    I have an interest in all my different subjects, but in particular history. I am extremely well read in history (I like to think so ), and I thoroughly enjoy studying it. In law, it seems from what I have read that attaining a place at Oxford would be a major step up, as it is such a competitive industry. You can then, once graduating, do the GDL (which can be funded by large law firms) and then train to become a solicitor. Recently I spoke to a solicitor who came to visit my school, and she accentuated how important your university is when applying for jobs in law. She explained how her daughter had studied history at Cambridge (with the intention of converting after), and then had no trouble landing a job in London - she did state how this elitism is wrong, but it's the way it is. I know I would have a much, much higher chance of attaining a place to study history than I would law, it's fact really (~33% for history). I am interested in both subjects, so it's not like I'd be disappointed studying either. Furthermore, law is arguably one of the toughest degrees (lowest % of 1st I believe), and so the solicitor said doing the GDL is... not easier, as it's very intense, but doing another degree and then converting takes pressure off you. Attaining a higher class in history, I am led to believe, is easier.

    However, If i had to put it bluntly I would not be overly enthused about studying history elsewhere, I would much rather just study law. Therefore I wouldn't have to spend a year doing the GDL to be in the same position as I would be if I had done the law course. I know it seems that I am just trying to 'play the system' by trying to study history at Oxford for that 'university name', and perhaps I am - but I want every advantage I can get.

    So there's the issue, I am interested in two courses at various institutions, but unfortunately I can only have 1 personal statement... fantastic! I have considered saying for example how I have researched the Roman Empire, and then explaining how I was interested in the development of laws during this period. So in other words, in some parts of my statement mixing law and history. I fear, however, that this will water down a history and law applications, and I will get rejections everywhere. This is especially true as I intent to apply for Durham, Nottingham etc... I also have 2-3 weeks work experience in a solicitors.

    Would it be ridiculous to split my personal statement into 2, one for history and law. I do not think that's possible, and it sounds like a silly idea.

    I am not fussed about taking a year out If I fail to get into Oxford, but at the moment I feel a huge amount of pressure on me as I feel I'm in a real Oxford or bust situation. Any help?

    Also, I am sorry if I come across as arrogant or abrasive as I state how I wouldn't want to study history elsewhere. I'm spending £9000 a year and so I want it to be right for me, especially as I am going to have high predictions. I am not in anyway saying how history is a bad degree or how other universities are not worthy of me.
    If you want to study Law then apply for Law. If you want to study History then apply for History. It isn't any more complicated than that. Forget about competition/Oxbridge/RG/reputation/careers and think which subject you want to study for 3 years. The course you're most likely to get into is the one you want to do most. It will also be the one you do best at. Simply wanting a legal career won't get you through 3 years if you're not excited about the course content (and of course plenty of History graduates go into legal careers).

    If you're stuck on this try writing a personal statement for both and see which is easier. Remember that for universities like Oxford and Cambridge a PS should be you sharing your academic interest, not trying to impress an Admissions Tutor with a list of lawyers you followed.
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    (Original post by Peterhouse Admissions)
    If you want to study Law then apply for Law. If you want to study History then apply for History. It isn't any more complicated than that. Forget about competition/Oxbridge/RG/reputation/careers and think which subject you want to study for 3 years. The course you're most likely to get into is the one you want to do most. It will also be the one you do best at. Simply wanting a legal career won't get you through 3 years if you're not excited about the course content (and of course plenty of History graduates go into legal careers).

    If you're stuck on this try writing a personal statement for both and see which is easier. Remember that for universities like Oxford and Cambridge a PS should be you sharing your academic interest, not trying to impress an Admissions Tutor with a list of lawyers you followed.
    Is a more accurate way to say this
 
 
 
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