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oxbridge gsce grades

99877777654 - oxford law?
Im studying english lit history and politics
Predicted 3A* + EPQ
Ive done a lot of super-curricular + legal work experience
Original post by Anonymous #1
99877777654 - oxford law?
Im studying english lit history and politics
Predicted 3A* + EPQ
Ive done a lot of super-curricular + legal work experience


I would recommend this eBook, which is free to download: Tell-Me-About-A-Banana-e-Book.pdf (storage.googleapis.com)

You might be a more competitive applicant with 3 A star grades achieved, so apply post A-Level. 😉

Are you also applying to any of the following: LSE, UCL, KCL, SOAS, QMUL, Durham, Bristol, York, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Leeds, Exeter, Nottingham and Manchester? 😧
(edited 1 month ago)
Oxford prefer mostly 8s and 9s but the rest of your application is very strong so you definitely still have a chance
Original post by Anonymous
99877777654 - oxford law?
Im studying english lit history and politics
Predicted 3A* + EPQ
Ive done a lot of super-curricular + legal work experience

i really want As in a level because I'm thinking of doing law which is an extremely competitive course as you know. I'm doing your exact subjects + spanish and I was wondering if it's manageable to get A*s in all of them as i've heard they're edxtemely difficult subjects ( esp english lit).
What gcse's grades did u get and which ones did u do?
and also do u go state or independent?
btw which legal experience/super-curriculars have u done? x tysm for everything i would rlly apprectiate it
Reply 4
I do not think oxford care that much about GCSEs. I think only the LNAT matters
Original post by os282b
I do not think oxford care that much about GCSEs. I think only the LNAT matters

Hi, I got an offer for Law at Oxford this year, so just wanted to add what I've learnt/heard about this during the process + some tips for OP:

They do care about them but it's a balancing act of sorts. For example, a candidate with an okay LNAT who also has okay GCSEs will not be as an attractive as a candidate with an okay LNAT but good/great GCSEs (by their standard). This is because weakness in one part of the application can be compensated for by strength in another part of the application, so pre-interview invite LNAT, references, personal statement and GCSEs will all be taken into consideration, and post interview they'll add the interview scores into that mix.

But might be helpful to know that Oxford only look at your top 6 or 7 GCSEs (usually top 6 I think), so for you that would read as 998777/ 9987777. I wouldn't worry too much about it based on that, however it would be worth doing as much LNAT practice as you can (I recommend Arbitio), and looking at the Oxford Law recommended reading list for Year 12.

Another thing I can't stress enough is essay competitions. The Peter Cane Legal reasoning prize has closed but John Locke (Very prestigious) is still open for registration and The Robert Walker Prize (Cambridge's law comp) may still be open, though I know the deadline is some time in April so it may be a tight deadline. This will really help to separate you from other candidates and give you an edge, and it looks really impressive in a personal statement.

One last final warning I would add is that you need to be able to show how you got your work experience. Big firms don't tend to offer work experience to non-state school students unless you have a connection, and they're not interested if it's obviously something you've only been able to access because of family links etc. If that is the case, either don't mention the name of the firm and just say what type of law they specialised in (e.g contract law, intellectual property), or make sure you can demonstrate how you personally got that work experience.

Hope this is helpful - let me know if you have any more questions!
Reply 6
Original post by sixthformstress
Hi, I got an offer for Law at Oxford this year, so just wanted to add what I've learnt/heard about this during the process + some tips for OP:
They do care about them but it's a balancing act of sorts. For example, a candidate with an okay LNAT who also has okay GCSEs will not be as an attractive as a candidate with an okay LNAT but good/great GCSEs (by their standard). This is because weakness in one part of the application can be compensated for by strength in another part of the application, so pre-interview invite LNAT, references, personal statement and GCSEs will all be taken into consideration, and post interview they'll add the interview scores into that mix.
But might be helpful to know that Oxford only look at your top 6 or 7 GCSEs (usually top 6 I think), so for you that would read as 998777/ 9987777. I wouldn't worry too much about it based on that, however it would be worth doing as much LNAT practice as you can (I recommend Arbitio), and looking at the Oxford Law recommended reading list for Year 12.
Another thing I can't stress enough is essay competitions. The Peter Cane Legal reasoning prize has closed but John Locke (Very prestigious) is still open for registration and The Robert Walker Prize (Cambridge's law comp) may still be open, though I know the deadline is some time in April so it may be a tight deadline. This will really help to separate you from other candidates and give you an edge, and it looks really impressive in a personal statement.
One last final warning I would add is that you need to be able to show how you got your work experience. Big firms don't tend to offer work experience to non-state school students unless you have a connection, and they're not interested if it's obviously something you've only been able to access because of family links etc. If that is the case, either don't mention the name of the firm and just say what type of law they specialised in (e.g contract law, intellectual property), or make sure you can demonstrate how you personally got that work experience.
Hope this is helpful - let me know if you have any more questions!

how do you know that they care? I also got an offer for law at oxford this year
Original post by os282b
how do you know that they care? I also got an offer for law at oxford this year

They mention it in their admissions booklet - you can probably find it on what do they know. They mention it on open days etc but it's also on the law faculty website I think (probably in some of their videos as well). They essentially say that during the shortlisting process it's something they give weight to and it can be a deciding factor in who gets an interview and who doesn't if they have a lot of similar candidates. The only thing worth noting is that they're contextualised so I guess that might make your situation easier/harder depending on the performance of your school.
Original post by os282b
how do you know that they care? I also got an offer for law at oxford this year

https://www.law.ox.ac.uk/admissions/undergraduate/undergraduate-selection-criteria

"Throughout the admissions process, tutors will be seeking to detect the candidate's future potential as a law student. Existing achievement (as revealed in official examinations, predicted examination results, and school reports), as well as performance in the written test and interview, is relied upon mainly as evidence of future potential."

This was just a quick search and there's definitely places where they go into it in more detail but "existing achievement" here is referring to GCSEs for home students.
Original post by sixthformstress
https://www.law.ox.ac.uk/admissions/undergraduate/undergraduate-selection-criteria
"Throughout the admissions process, tutors will be seeking to detect the candidate's future potential as a law student. Existing achievement (as revealed in official examinations, predicted examination results, and school reports), as well as performance in the written test and interview, is relied upon mainly as evidence of future potential."
This was just a quick search and there's definitely places where they go into it in more detail but "existing achievement" here is referring to GCSEs for home students.


As the passage you have quoted indicates, "existing achievement" is not limited to GCSE results. The tutors look at the whole picture.
Original post by os282b
how do you know that they care? I also got an offer for law at oxford this year

Please see what Oxford says on its website about the factors which considers admissions. To this I add that I have recently discussed the admissions process with four Oxford law tutors. They confirmed that they look at GCSE results, but they consider the complete academic picture presented by a candidate. The initial sift of candidates seeking to read law is done centrally by the Faculty. The surviving applications are sent to the colleges. The tutors use the interviews to assess how a candidate would cope with the tutorial system. An evidently outstanding candidate may survive a poor interview, because the tutors know that candidates are nervous. A good candidate on paper who waffles at interview will probably be rejected.

It is hard to obtain work experience at a big law firm or a leading set of barrister's chambers if you are still at school. Places are limited, and most places go to people who are at university.

Large firms and set of chambers have adopted fairer recruitment policies and have largely eliminated nepotistic routes, so having a connection at a firm or in chambers won't in many cases get a person a place.

Oxford tutors are aware that not everyone can obtain experience in a law firm or chambers. They don't hold this against people. These days, Oxford tutors tend to be academics who are not practitioners, and they are in any event assessing candidates for the academic study of law, not trying to guess which candidates will one day be leading barristers or solicitors. That's the job of the chambers and law firms at a later stage.
Original post by Stiffy Byng
As the passage you have quoted indicates, "existing achievement" is not limited to GCSE results. The tutors look at the whole picture.

Yeah that's why I was mentioning that it was a balancing act in the post beforehand. But looking at the quoted one that's on me haha - it probably wasn't clear enough but I'm not trying to imply that "existing achievement" is limited to GCSEs, just that it's a part of it. However it's worth mentioning that although "existing achievement" is not only GCSEs they do tend to place more emphasis on them than predicted grades because GCSEs are what you've actually achieved in exam conditions (like A-Levels) so are the best indicator of whether or not you're actually likely to get the predicted grades, and the grades of your offer by extension if your application is successful.
Congratulations on your offers. I hope that you both enjoy studying law at Oxford. My daughter will be in the same cohort as you.

I add that precision and clarity of expression are things much beloved of Oxford Dons (and of lawyers who were taught by Oxford Dons, although in my case they taught me history).

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