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What does the HSPS assessment at Newnham look like?

Hi all, I'm planning on applying to HSPS at Newnham college Cambridge for 2024. It seems I have to take an admissions assessment for it but I can't find any examples of what it might look like? I just want to know what format I should be expecting so I'm not flustered in the exam.
Reply 1
According to its website: Applicants for the 2024 admissions cycle are required to take a Cambridge College registered written assessment. Past essay questions for the HSPS Admissions Assessment at Newnham have been:
‘Race and social inequality run in tandem in many societies Discuss.’
‘Why is authoritarian populism on the rise?’

By the way, I'm an international applicant - do you know how to register for the test? Does it take place before or after you submit the preliminary materials?
Reply 2
Original post by mocktrials
According to its website: Applicants for the 2024 admissions cycle are required to take a Cambridge College registered written assessment. Past essay questions for the HSPS Admissions Assessment at Newnham have been:
‘Race and social inequality run in tandem in many societies Discuss.’
‘Why is authoritarian populism on the rise?’

By the way, I'm an international applicant - do you know how to register for the test? Does it take place before or after you submit the preliminary materials?

Hi there! Thanks for your reply, I did see that but I wanted more info so I’ve emailed the admissions people with hopes to find out.

As far as I know, you do not need to register for the HSPS test. If you apply to a college that requires one, it will let you know the details about when it is once you’ve applied. I think they send you the SAQ first and then review your application, then they will let you know whether or not you will be assessed. If you do well, you’ll be invited for interview.
Reply 3
Original post by Hah122
Hi there! Thanks for your reply, I did see that but I wanted more info so I’ve emailed the admissions people with hopes to find out.

As far as I know, you do not need to register for the HSPS test. If you apply to a college that requires one, it will let you know the details about when it is once you’ve applied. I think they send you the SAQ first and then review your application, then they will let you know whether or not you will be assessed. If you do well, you’ll be invited for interview.

Hi! Thanks for your reply. But hold up, what's the SAQ?
Reply 4
Original post by mocktrials
Hi! Thanks for your reply. But hold up, what's the SAQ?

The SAQ is the “supplementary application questionnaire” that Cambridge will send all applicants after you submit your UCAS. It’s mostly very obvious stuff like your address, etc. but they also give you a small space to write more about why you want to apply (200-300 words). It’s like a Cambridge-specific mini personal statement. Also, it is not required to fill this in (and plenty who get in don’t do it), so if you have nothing to say that’s okay. This is also where you hand in any written work they require I believe. There’s more detailed explanations on YouTube that are good as well!
Reply 5
Hi!! I've recently applied to HSPS at Newnham too!! I’ve found a few past papers on the university website that have been very helpful but was wondering if anyone had any advice or experience in writing section 2 (the essay). As passionate as I am about the subject, I have never formally studied it (I do History, RS and English Lit at a-level as my sixth form do not offer politics or any HSPS-esque subjects) and thus feel like I will be at a huge disadvantage. I try my best to keep up to date with current affair and contemporary news, but I am aware that this is nothing in comparison to say a politics a-level. Does anyone have access to a section 2 essay I could maybe read or know where I could find one to understand the structure/style. If not any tips or advice would be greatly appreciated!!
The exam last year was one hour with a choice out of four essay questions. It is college specific so only Newnham HSPS applicants do it.

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