Will Oxford still consider my application with these GCSE grades?

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ilos
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Hi,
I got teacher assessed GCSE's last year. My grades were 8,8,8,7,7,7,7,7,5.
I believe these grades were not a true or accurate representation or forecast of what I could have got if I had sat the exams. I have read that Oxford only really seriously consider all 8s and 9s, for A Levels I am predicted A*AA. Will my GCSEs really undermine my potential as an applicant? (applying for PPE btw). Thanks.
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username4218074
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(Original post by ilos)
Hi,
I got teacher assessed GCSE's last year. My grades were 8,8,8,7,7,7,7,7,5.
I believe these grades were not a true or accurate representation or forecast of what I could have got if I had sat the exams. I have read that Oxford only really seriously consider all 8s and 9s, for A Levels I am predicted A*AA. Will my GCSEs really undermine my potential as an applicant? (applying for PPE btw). Thanks.
firstly, GCSEs are used differently for every course and not everyone has all 8/9s. Cambridge for example don't use GCSEs at all. However, Oxford care alot about GCSEs and A-level predictions for PPE specifically so unfortunately you're already behind all other applicants who will be competitive: https://www.ppe.ox.ac.uk/files/ppead...antsfinalv2pdf if you look at the graph you see that they also care about cGCSEs which is a measure of how you did compared to an average applicant in your school.
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Culver
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(Original post by ilos)
Hi,
I got teacher assessed GCSE's last year. My grades were 8,8,8,7,7,7,7,7,5.
I believe these grades were not a true or accurate representation or forecast of what I could have got if I had sat the exams. I have read that Oxford only really seriously consider all 8s and 9s, for A Levels I am predicted A*AA. Will my GCSEs really undermine my potential as an applicant? (applying for PPE btw). Thanks.
Hey! I don’t know a lot about PPE entry requirements but if it helps I got in for French with the same predicted A levels as you and GCSEs at 8897766655. I guess there’s a chance Oxford could be taking GCSEs into account even less for your cohort due to the fact that you didn’t actually get to sit exams so they may not be wholly accurate but I don’t know that for sure!

If Oxford is your dream then 100% go for it - it’s an amazing experience just applying. It’ll make you fall in love with your subject even more, get you to do some wider reading around your subjects outside of school, making you not only more knowledgable but more independent in your research, and most importantly, there’s nothing to lose from just applying. I can guarantee that the application process will make your life pretty exciting while it lasts!

I know French is a lot less competitive than PPE but in my eyes it’s worth a shot just from the experience. I didn’t apply with the belief that I’d actually get in, but I knew that applying would get my grades up even more and make me more passionate about my subject. If you feel like applying would benefit you, even if you don’t get in, then there’s absolutely nothing stopping you
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ilos
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(Original post by Levi.-)
firstly, GCSEs are used differently for every course and not everyone has all 8/9s. Cambridge for example don't use GCSEs at all. However, Oxford care alot about GCSEs and A-level predictions for PPE specifically so unfortunately you're already behind all other applicants who will be competitive: https://www.ppe.ox.ac.uk/files/ppead...antsfinalv2pdf if you look at the graph you see that they also care about cGCSEs which is a measure of how you did compared to an average applicant in your school.
Yes, I had seen those statistics I will still definitely apply as the experience you get from the process will be so valuable anyway! Thanks
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ilos
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(Original post by Culver)
Hey! I don’t know a lot about PPE entry requirements but if it helps I got in for French with the same predicted A levels as you and GCSEs at 8897766655. I guess there’s a chance Oxford could be taking GCSEs into account even less for your cohort due to the fact that you didn’t actually get to sit exams so they may not be wholly accurate but I don’t know that for sure!

If Oxford is your dream then 100% go for it - it’s an amazing experience just applying. It’ll make you fall in love with your subject even more, get you to do some wider reading around your subjects outside of school, making you not only more knowledgable but more independent in your research, and most importantly, there’s nothing to lose from just applying. I can guarantee that the application process will make your life pretty exciting while it lasts!

I know French is a lot less competitive than PPE but in my eyes it’s worth a shot just from the experience. I didn’t apply with the belief that I’d actually get in, but I knew that applying would get my grades up even more and make me more passionate about my subject. If you feel like applying would benefit you, even if you don’t get in, then there’s absolutely nothing stopping you
Thank you so much for the info! Your reply just restored all my hope after reading the first reply to this thread haha so I will definitely still be applying because as you said the experience itself is so useful and there is nothing to lose really from applying. Thanks again
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Culver
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(Original post by ilos)
Thank you so much for the info! Your reply just restored all my hope after reading the first reply to this thread haha so I will definitely still be applying because as you said the experience itself is so useful and there is nothing to lose really from applying. Thanks again
That’s awesome I’m so glad you’re applying!! I know the statistics can sometimes be off putting, but it’s always worth a try, especially if you do well in the admissions test. Let me know if you need help with anything like choosing a college to apply to or personal statement advice and feel free to join the Oxford 2022 applicants thread on here! I don’t have the link as I’m on the app but if you search for it it should come up.

(Also I got my GCSE grades wrong in my original message I got 888 not 889 - I didn’t get any 9s)
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username4218074
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(Original post by ilos)
Yes, I had seen those statistics I will still definitely apply as the experience you get from the process will be so valuable anyway! Thanks
yes/no. I honestly don't think there's much value in the process if you don't get to interview since that's genuinely an experience that can be learnt from - although one could argue the entire application is an experience but I wouldn't call it a valuable one unless you feel like preparing for an entrance exam is useful. The statistics themselves aren't important, correlation does not equal causation; I'd be worried about this:https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/reque..._passthrough=1
scroll down to page 22. You will see for PPE they explicitly have GCSE and A-level performance as high factors. I get that you surpass the entrance requirements but Oxford, unlike cambridge, don't view achieved A-levels differently to predictions and a prediction of A*A*A* looks much stronger than A*AA (as supported by the statistics). I would strongly urge you to check what your cohort's average gcse profile was like with your school since if you have strong contextual gcses you will stand a chance (assuming you do well on the TSA which is v hard in of itself)

You have 5 options so i doubt applying to oxford will be an issue as long as you aren't then applying to other really competitive ppe courses like LSE and UCL since the same issues would arise. Maybe look at similar courses or courses at cambridge like land economy or HSPS? Good luck with applying anyway if you choose to do so.
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A Rolling Stone
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(Original post by ilos)
Hi,
I got teacher assessed GCSE's last year. My grades were 8,8,8,7,7,7,7,7,5.
I believe these grades were not a true or accurate representation or forecast of what I could have got if I had sat the exams. I have read that Oxford only really seriously consider all 8s and 9s, for A Levels I am predicted A*AA. Will my GCSEs really undermine my potential as an applicant? (applying for PPE btw). Thanks.
i think they will consider you, but i don't think they will seriously consider you.
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ilos
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(Original post by Levi.-)
yes/no. I honestly don't think there's much value in the process if you don't get to interview since that's genuinely an experience that can be learnt from - although one could argue the entire application is an experience but I wouldn't call it a valuable one unless you feel like preparing for an entrance exam is useful. The statistics themselves aren't important, correlation does not equal causation; I'd be worried about this:https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/reque..._passthrough=1
scroll down to page 22. You will see for PPE they explicitly have GCSE and A-level performance as high factors. I get that you surpass the entrance requirements but Oxford, unlike cambridge, don't view achieved A-levels differently to predictions and a prediction of A*A*A* looks much stronger than A*AA (as supported by the statistics). I would strongly urge you to check what your cohort's average gcse profile was like with your school since if you have strong contextual gcses you will stand a chance (assuming you do well on the TSA which is v hard in of itself)

You have 5 options so i doubt applying to oxford will be an issue as long as you aren't then applying to other really competitive ppe courses like LSE and UCL since the same issues would arise. Maybe look at similar courses or courses at cambridge like land economy or HSPS? Good luck with applying anyway if you choose to do so.
Did you apply to Oxford ?
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username4218074
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(Original post by ilos)
Did you apply to Oxford ?
Nah Cambridge, though I didn't get in I can safely say it was an actual experience having 2 interviews (although this year and next year they will be virtual so not as cool as going down to cambridge for a day and sitting in a nice room and talking to the interviewers.) If you don't get to do this I'm unsure what aspects of applying to Oxford would be considered an experience since aside from going down there to do an interview and meet new people in the historic city there's not much else lol. Most of your application pre-interview is filling in forms like your grades, predictions, personal statement, ethnicity, country, fee status etc. The rest of the experience is just preparing for an exam :/ . Unless your cGCSE score is very good and you're confident you can get a TSA score in the top 10, maybe 15 percent, I'd encourage you to look at other courses at Cambridge since your GCSEs won't impact you at all and you will almost certainly get an interview. That being said the course itself is more important so if you like PPE as an academic study then by all means still apply to Oxford but I wouldn't call it an experience if it fits the above criteria. What exactly is it about PPE that you like? The career prospects aren't better than any other Oxbridge degree.
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ilos
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(Original post by Levi.-)
Nah Cambridge, though I didn't get in I can safely say it was an actual experience having 2 interviews (although this year and next year they will be virtual so not as cool as going down to cambridge for a day and sitting in a nice room and talking to the interviewers.) If you don't get to do this I'm unsure what aspects of applying to Oxford would be considered an experience since aside from going down there to do an interview and meet new people in the historic city there's not much else lol. Most of your application pre-interview is filling in forms like your grades, predictions, personal statement, ethnicity, country, fee status etc. The rest of the experience is just preparing for an exam :/ . Unless your cGCSE score is very good and you're confident you can get a TSA score in the top 10, maybe 15 percent, I'd encourage you to look at other courses at Cambridge since your GCSEs won't impact you at all and you will almost certainly get an interview. That being said the course itself is more important so if you like PPE as an academic study then by all means still apply to Oxford but I wouldn't call it an experience if it fits the above criteria. What exactly is it about PPE that you like? The career prospects aren't better than any other Oxbridge degree
Oh I see, thanks, what uni are you at now? or perhaps gap year?. I am really interested in all 3 aspects of the course to be honest and over time as I have done more reading, pretty much have grown to really love philosophy politics and economics. I had originally contemplated just a straight economics degree elsewhere but realised that I prefer the qualitative aspect of econ more. Although the economics at oxford is still very maths orientated I think I like the balance of that with the essay and critical thinking side of it.
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username4218074
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(Original post by ilos)
Oh I see, thanks, what uni are you at now? or perhaps gap year?. I am really interested in all 3 aspects of the course to be honest and over time as I have done more reading, pretty much have grown to really love philosophy politics and economics. I had originally contemplated just a straight economics degree elsewhere but realised that I prefer the qualitative aspect of econ more. Although the economics at oxford is still very maths orientated I think I like the balance of that with the essay and critical thinking side of it.
I mean there's no harm in applying tbh you have 5 choices and if you're hung up on PPE then not applying to Oxford could cause some regret and at the end of the day we don't know for certain what will happen. And I'm deferred going to UCL for Chemistry with Maths but my original offer was for medicine
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Muttley79
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(Original post by ilos)
Oh I see, thanks, what uni are you at now? or perhaps gap year?. I am really interested in all 3 aspects of the course to be honest and over time as I have done more reading, pretty much have grown to really love philosophy politics and economics. I had originally contemplated just a straight economics degree elsewhere but realised that I prefer the qualitative aspect of econ more. Although the economics at oxford is still very maths orientated I think I like the balance of that with the essay and critical thinking side of it.
Are your school supportive? What are they doing to help you?
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viennas
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(Original post by ilos)
Hi,
I got teacher assessed GCSE's last year. My grades were 8,8,8,7,7,7,7,7,5.
I believe these grades were not a true or accurate representation or forecast of what I could have got if I had sat the exams. I have read that Oxford only really seriously consider all 8s and 9s, for A Levels I am predicted A*AA. Will my GCSEs really undermine my potential as an applicant? (applying for PPE btw). Thanks.
Bit late but I got an offer for hispol at Oxford with 9,8,8,7,7,7,7,7,6,B. As someone else said, Oxford care quite a lot about GCSE results for determining who gets an interview. However, they measure these against everyone else at your school (contextualised GCSEs) to try and filter out academic advantage, etc. I wouldn't say that you would immediately be rejected due to those results, go for it. Keep in mind that the other key factor here is the TSA - if you do good at that, you'll be fine.
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username4218074
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(Original post by viennas)
Bit late but I got an offer for hispol at Oxford with 9,8,8,7,7,7,7,7,6,B. As someone else said, Oxford care quite a lot about GCSE results for determining who gets an interview. However, they measure these against everyone else at your school (contextualised GCSEs) to try and filter out academic advantage, etc. I wouldn't say that you would immediately be rejected due to those results, go for it. Keep in mind that the other key factor here is the TSA - if you do good at that, you'll be fine.
shortlisting criteria is different for each course but yeah a v strong TSA score would largely negate it tbh. Econ and management tends to have the higher GCSE reqs though. 9-10A* etc
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