niamhsrevision
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Hi guys,
So for about a year i've been set on doing history and italian at oxford, and i've prepared all my stuff for it, research, admissions tests, personal statement, etc. It's only been recently in the past couple of months that i've been having second thoughts about it. In reality, I'd actually rather do Japanese Studies, but have just pushed that thought away because i didn't want to redo all the work i'd already put in.

I've talked considerably about my love for Japan and Japanese history in my personal statement; do you think that if I go to interview there's a chance they would pool me for the Japanese course? Or should I mention it myself? I've heard of things like that happening before at other unis and Oxford too, but I can't remember where. Just wondered if anyone had any experience or knowledge of this. Thank you so much!!

ps: the issue being that my school's deadline for handing in our applications is tomorrow... so there's not really any hope of me suddenly whipping up a perfect PS when i've been writing my current one for months lol
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Plagioclase
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In short, no, this is not going to happen. Switching courses is sometimes possible but it is (1) very rare, (2) not straightforward and (3) has to be instigated by you. If you're serious about wanting to switch to oriental studies then, realistically, it's probably too late for this year if the deadline is tomorrow but you could possibly try and contact the college you've applied to, to see if they have any suggestions (in all likelihood they will ask you to reapply though).
Last edited by Plagioclase; 1 month ago
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niamhsrevision
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(Original post by Plagioclase)
In short, no, this is not going to happen. Switching courses is sometimes possible but it is (1) very rare, (2) not straightforward and (3) has to be instigated by you. If you're serious about wanting to switch to oriental studies then, realistically, it's probably too late for this year if the deadline is tomorrow but you could possibly try and contact the college you've applied to, to see if they have any suggestions (in all likelihood they will ask you to reapply though).
okay that's a shame, but i thought that would probably be the case. thank you for your help anyway
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becausethenight
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(Original post by niamhsrevision)
Hi guys,
So for about a year i've been set on doing history and italian at oxford, and i've prepared all my stuff for it, research, admissions tests, personal statement, etc. It's only been recently in the past couple of months that i've been having second thoughts about it. In reality, I'd actually rather do Japanese Studies, but have just pushed that thought away because i didn't want to redo all the work i'd already put in.

I've talked considerably about my love for Japan and Japanese history in my personal statement; do you think that if I go to interview there's a chance they would pool me for the Japanese course? Or should I mention it myself? I've heard of things like that happening before at other unis and Oxford too, but I can't remember where. Just wondered if anyone had any experience or knowledge of this. Thank you so much!!

ps: the issue being that my school's deadline for handing in our applications is tomorrow... so there's not really any hope of me suddenly whipping up a perfect PS when i've been writing my current one for months lol
Just to say - your school has artificially brought the deadline forward by just under month! If you speak to them and explain they should be able to give you some extra time to rewrite your PS, and then you can do some extra reading for Oriental Studies and prep for the OLAT. You can probably use the same written work as very few people will be studying something related at A level anyway and the written work is due in Nov 10th if you did want to change it.

Realistically a large amount of selection is likely on the OLAT and written work, as well as your PS, so you could still stand a good chance of getting interviewed and you'll do a lot better in the interview if you're applying for the subject you actually want. Oriental studies is probably less competitive than Joint Honours too.

If you know you want to do Oriental Studies, talk to your school ASAP and apply for the course you want to do. You will not be pooled between courses so this is the best way to study the subject you want - even if you did get an offer and then ask to switch they would likely ask you to complete the first year of History and Italian anyway.
Last edited by becausethenight; 1 month ago
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Mikos
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If your application is for the history and Italian course, it will end up on the desk of someone relevant to those departments and if they read your personal statement they will most likely reject you pre-interview. It’s not their responsibility to forward you to a subject you’d have been better off for but didn’t apply to.

If you want to do Japanese, apply for it. Tell your school you’ve had a change of heart.
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EOData
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You never know. I know someone who went to Oxford to read Maths. After a term they agreed he could re-start the following Autumn reading Philosophy and Italian if he did a crash course in Italian before he started (he had no MFL A levels)
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liverninthered
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(Original post by EOData)
You never know. I know someone who went to Oxford to read Maths. After a term they agreed he could re-start the following Autumn reading Philosophy and Italian if he did a crash course in Italian before he started (he had no MFL A levels)
Yes, it is possible to switch courses. It isn't that uncommon but depends on college.


OP, you will 100% not be "pooled" to another subject during the application process.

Just apply for Japanese if that's what you want to do.
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Muttley79
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(Original post by niamhsrevision)
okay that's a shame, but i thought that would probably be the case. thank you for your help anyway
I echo post #4 - I deal with UCAS and the school deadline is far too early. Talk to someone tomorrow and explain your change of heart

Good luck and let us know
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Oxford Mum
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I 100% agree with all the answers above. Apply for the subject you actually want to do.

Here is the Oxford Demystified chapter on Oriental Studies (Japanese). Hope this helps:

https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/sho...8#post88937748

There are lots of resources here you can look at. And as they say above, you will have to do the same admissions test as the Italian.
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niamhsrevision
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Hi everyone, OP here. Thank you so much for all your responses, I wasn't expecting so many, and they've been really helpful. Phew. There's a lot to think about I guess. I'm notoriously bad at making decisions so one this big might pose a bit of a problem lol, so I'll need some time to figure out what's next. It's difficult because I still love Italian, and it literally kept me sane over lockdown for months when GCSEs went out the window, and I've been telling everyone that's what I'm doing for ages so it feels like such a betrayal and also way too spontaneous to turn my back on it after all this time. But Japanese....... ugh. I've just had a look at Oxford's course options for the history part of the course and discovered there's very limited Japanese history and not a whole lot that interests me greatly. I'm going to dig around some other unis and have a long think and talk to a couple people. Well, anyway, I'll keep you updated on what I decide. Thank you all again, I'm really grateful.
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Oxford Mum
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(Original post by niamhsrevision)
Hi everyone, OP here. Thank you so much for all your responses, I wasn't expecting so many, and they've been really helpful. Phew. There's a lot to think about I guess. I'm notoriously bad at making decisions so one this big might pose a bit of a problem lol, so I'll need some time to figure out what's next. It's difficult because I still love Italian, and it literally kept me sane over lockdown for months when GCSEs went out the window, and I've been telling everyone that's what I'm doing for ages so it feels like such a betrayal and also way too spontaneous to turn my back on it after all this time. But Japanese....... ugh. I've just had a look at Oxford's course options for the history part of the course and discovered there's very limited Japanese history and not a whole lot that interests me greatly. I'm going to dig around some other unis and have a long think and talk to a couple people. Well, anyway, I'll keep you updated on what I decide. Thank you all again, I'm really grateful.
I am glad I was able to give you some insight into the Japanese course, then.
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Muttley79
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(Original post by niamhsrevision)
Hi everyone, OP here. Thank you so much for all your responses, I wasn't expecting so many, and they've been really helpful. Phew. There's a lot to think about I guess. I'm notoriously bad at making decisions so one this big might pose a bit of a problem lol, so I'll need some time to figure out what's next. It's difficult because I still love Italian, and it literally kept me sane over lockdown for months when GCSEs went out the window, and I've been telling everyone that's what I'm doing for ages so it feels like such a betrayal and also way too spontaneous to turn my back on it after all this time. But Japanese....... ugh. I've just had a look at Oxford's course options for the history part of the course and discovered there's very limited Japanese history and not a whole lot that interests me greatly. I'm going to dig around some other unis and have a long think and talk to a couple people. Well, anyway, I'll keep you updated on what I decide. Thank you all again, I'm really grateful.
https://www.sheffield.ac.uk/undergra...and-history-ba

I just googled to find this

You could also consider a joint degree or a flexible combined honours degree -
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ohope
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SOAS might be a good choice for you; you can apply for straight Japanese or Japanese and History (or another subject). https://www.soas.ac.uk/japankorea/programmes/bajapand/
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ohope
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A few places offer joint degrees in Italian and Japanese if you still hanker after Italian as well; a quick google offers Leeds and Cardiff.
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