Applying to Oxbridge for Master's in the field of IR

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AD_21
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Hi everyone! I just finished my second year at the University of Warwick, studying Politics and International Studies. Going into my last year, I have an average of 70% so I am hoping I will be able to maintain that and achieve a first when I graduate. I want to continue studying in the field of IR and world politics and plan on applying for the Oxford MSc in Global Governance and Diplomacy course and the Cambridge's MPhil in Politics and International Studies. Outside of my studies, I have had 2 years of experience as a vice-president for a society known as AIESEC. The organisation essentially works to develop leadership experience in young people, also facilitating internships and volunteering opportunities which tackle the UN's Sustainable Development Goals. I wanted to ask, with my current grades and this experience, do I stand to be in a good position to make a strong application? Any other advice as well to improve my chances in the application process would be greatly appreciated, thank you!
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megascream
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You will have a decent chance to get a offer from the Oxford MSc but the Cambridge Mphil will be harder. The Cambridge Mphil focuses more on academic experiences (even If it's not by research) and your mentioned experience doesn't contribute to that. Also, if my memory is correct, all Oxbridge politics & IR applicants require a first so your grade doesn't stand out. You will need a really strong personal statement and writing sample to get your offers.

I obtain a first, with publications and research experiences in IR, but was rejected by both unis for three times during my applications, so there is no guarantee of an offer especially in MPhil Politics and International Studies, a quiet formal and respected degree. The MSc is probably easier as it is more or less a derivative from the MPhil International Relations in Oxford, now a two-year degree.
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BigShaq11
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(Original post by megascream)
You will have a decent chance to get a offer from the Oxford MSc but the Cambridge Mphil will be harder. The Cambridge Mphil focuses more on academic experiences (even If it's not by research) and your mentioned experience doesn't contribute to that. Also, if my memory is correct, all Oxbridge politics & IR applicants require a first so your grade doesn't stand out. You will need a really strong personal statement and writing sample to get your offers.

I obtain a first, with publications and research experiences in IR, but was rejected by both unis for three times during my applications, so there is no guarantee of an offer especially in MPhil Politics and International Studies, a quiet formal and respected degree. The MSc is probably easier as it is more or less a derivative from the MPhil International Relations in Oxford, now a two-year degree.
Did they tell you why you were continuously rejected? Your academic resume stands out so I can't see the issue?
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megascream
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(Original post by BigShaq11)
Did they tell you why you were continuously rejected? Your academic resume stands out so I can't see the issue?
Probably because the degrees I applied are both research degrees (excl. undergrad of course) and those are highly linked with the department tradition. My potential Cambridge supervisor replied he is possible to supervise but it's overall unfit to the department. Oxford never reply so I have no idea. And honestly everyone I know in Oxbridge doing similar research degrees are as good or even better than me in academic records, so I don't regret the results xp.
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BigShaq11
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(Original post by megascream)
Probably because the degrees I applied are both research degrees (excl. undergrad of course) and those are highly linked with the department tradition. My potential Cambridge supervisor replied he is possible to supervise but it's overall unfit to the department. Oxford never reply so I have no idea. And honestly everyone I know in Oxbridge doing similar research degrees are as good or even better than me in academic records, so I don't regret the results xp.
I see. I would like to apply to both MPhils. What do you advise I do to improve my chances? Currently a 2nd year undergrad in History and Politics/IR
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threeportdrift
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(Original post by BigShaq11)
I see. I would like to apply to both MPhils. What do you advise I do to improve my chances? Currently a 2nd year undergrad in History and Politics/IR
Do a really strong dissertation, get a first or over 67% as a minimum, and apply with an interesting, well thought out research proposal.
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megascream
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(Original post by BigShaq11)
I see. I would like to apply to both MPhils. What do you advise I do to improve my chances? Currently a 2nd year undergrad in History and Politics/IR
Strong dissertation and relevant research proposal are the most important things. Even better, you can explore a highly related topic for both of them. So your potential supervisor and department can see something about your research.

Meanwhile, I recommend you to contact your potential supervisor as soon as possible, probably Aug/Sep of your application year so that you can know better about each other. Your supervisor may even offer you some inspirations on your proposal. The Oxford centre I intend to go doesn't recommend to do this, but I did and there's no harm. Meanwhile, Cambridge prof helped a lot. The supports are indeed useful to successfully applied other unis (Durham, St Andrews, UCL, etc).
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