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    well well,
    I do agree with some of the answers here, but I think I f***** up some questions, like the last one (got E), the tiles on (got 1:12), the holiday man one (got 35) and the rotating wheel (haha i was so dumb with that one) but whatever...
    i felt really good after the test but now as I realise some mistakes.. dunno

    And, because I did the test in South America (was the only one in the centre), I got different essay questions:
    4 alltogether, 1st one was: "Does science have limitations?" (the one I did), 2nd something like "Is it always good if the majority gets its way?" (almost did that one) and the other 2 I dont remember..

    good luck to everybody!
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    (Original post by Tommy Jay)
    Multiple choice is wayyy more important!

    If you have good multiple choice, but bad essay = interview

    if you have bad multiple choice, but good essay= no interview

    that is a huge generalisation, but there is no doubt a lot more weighting is given to the multi-choice
    this is bullsh*t. At Exeter College at least in last year's selection process for PPE, all decent essays got an interview - regardless of multiple choice performance.
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    Yeah, its good to see my answers are correlating with everyone elses, hopefully I'll be able to score between 42 and 45 like i did in the practise papers. My answers to some of the more troublesme questions were:

    1. Tree question : 4.8m
    2. Wheel : 1
    3. The zoo question: children learn a lot from zoos (wasnt the entire basis of the argument that zoos should be closed because they did not teach anyone).
    4. Granny holiday: I seem to remember the length of her holiday was only 4 days assuming she only stayed in each country for 1 day (although, I cant remember exactly, it might have been 5)
    5. The number of days off question was definately 25
    6. The last question: Originally wrote down C but then changed my answer to E (I think I managed to picture a situation where C worked but now im not so sure)
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    Good to see that everyone else thought it was bad as well. I messed up on the same questions as a lot of you (pyramid, hexagons, zoo, possibly granny + phone bill as well) and I couldn't for the life of me figure out how to do the plant + block of flats one.

    For the essay I did life expectancy, beginning by talking about how an increasing population of old people will lead to politicians trying to buy their votes, giving Medicare Part D in the US as a specific example, and how these policies will become normalised and therefore self-perpetuating because it would require a great deal of political courage to challenge them. I then went on to talk about how you would expect older people to have a greater deal of influence in the political process itself, but that this contradicted by the contrast between the increasing age of the population and the relative youth of political leaders (Cameron + Clegg, Blair + Brown in '97, Obama, Kennedy + Nixon in 1960/1952 respectively). I wanted to talk about non-political effects as well but wasted too much time at the beginning and so could only talk about how traditional forms of communication favoured by old people are losing ground in favour of things like the Internet. All in all, the multiple choice went relatively well (although I probably won't say that come January) and the essay was a train wreck.
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    On the "days off" question, was he given 25 days per month?
    I recall reasoning that it was as many days as he was given off that month since he had used 5 but had 5 carrying over.

    I did the essay about whether the majority's way is always right. I said something about defining right as in the best interest for the society, then went on to say that the literal majority was not always right but that those whom they elect are always right, since they have both the backing of the majority but (hopefully) more experience or education than the average member of the majority needed to make decisions...

    I was thinking in the lines of Hobbes or Locke but didn't get far enough along to write about what happens if the person they pick doesn't really have the society's best interests in mind!
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    I chose to do the qu on ' If humanitarian aid is good why shouldnt europe invade the US to prevent the death penalty' - I made a mistake of not planning enough, because what i found was as i was writing i came up with new points that really messed up the structure ... n the multiple choice paper.. there were more problem based qus than usual ...which meant that I was a bit tight for time.. I'm dissapointed with my performance
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    (Original post by Kneechuh)
    ****. I wrote like, the exact same thing (with Mill's speech on Capital Punishment in mind), along with deontology and transcendental ethics. I also mentioned stuff like the EU would be assuming infallibility in their moral creed, which I believe to be analytically subjective, etc, and also included Nozick's critique of utilitarianism. I concluded with the fact that both entities are inherently democratic, and hence laws etc. are decided through reasoned debate, and not force, stating something about Thrasymacus'/Plato's 'Might is Right' version of justice.

    I guess great minds think alike, eh? :rolleyes:
    Where was this speech by Mill? Did you read it or were you taught it? lol just wondering why i haven't read it =/
    I took quite a different view on the question, i guess i focused more on my structure than my actual content.
    I generally wrote this:
    - Intro, define HI, set out how statement will be dealt with ((1)is HI acceptable,(2) is it legit for europe to invade?) and gave line of argument
    - Para 1- Subjectivism, denial of real absolute HI or any kind of universal positive rights.
    -para 2- evaluation of that and advocation of opposite view, ie in favour of HI
    para 3- set out necessary limitations for HI, ie a synthesis between paras 1 and 2
    conc, kinda carried on from para 3; basically that i) nation states should only be allowed to provide political and economic pressure/sanctions, not invade, and ii) if invasion is necessary then must be carried out by an independent international body ie UN. Essentially the only reason for invasion by something like the UN coould be acts against human rights agreed by the nations.
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    also took the test in salem germany and especially liked the guy that was telling us our chances of getting in where 1:25 at highest

    i did the critical thinking first which were straightforward but was very slow with the problem solving ones so i had to guess on 7 of them

    for the essay i chose the einstein question which i thought to be really cool... wrote smth like how we use scientific thinking in everyday life when we touch a hot cup of tea and imply all cups are hot and that we first need to falsify that by touching an empty cup... i kinda transformed to models and tha we can only generalize what we either perceive with our senses or measure in experiments...

    i m, however, really worried of not getting invited to interview.... my grades in germany are pretty much perfect and i thought the statement and the reference to be good as well.. but what if i only got like 60 in the multiple choice... do they reject everyone that is under a specific score to reach the number they can interview or do they consider the complete application?
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    btw what u get on the question where it says therefore an international authority should be established.... wasnt the main conclusion of the argument that there should be a fair balance rather than the international authority since its only purpose was to enforce the balance???????????
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    (Original post by Merk that Sike of a Mike)
    Where was this speech by Mill? Did you read it or were you taught it? lol just wondering why i haven't read it =/
    I've got a version of Mill's Utilitarianism which includes his 1868 speech on Capital Punishment. You can find a (slightly longer) version of it here. In keeping with Mill's style, there's no paragraphs, so good luck reading it on a computer screen...
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    I see that most people have foudn the test ridiculously hard, and it's not just me.

    I hope they do lower the average for interviews. what are the chances ?
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    Did any one else do the essay question, "Does science have limitations?" ?
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    (Original post by calsbo)
    Did any one else do the essay question, "Does science have limitations?" ?
    yep here! what did you write?
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    I dont fully remember what I wrote...

    but I started by explaining that science uses the tools of perception, reason, language and existing knowledge to offer possible explanations for occurrences in the world (I wrote it better then...) and then I showed how perception can be misleading and biased, reason can be incorrect, existing knowledge (ie past expirements) can be inconclusive, and language (for hypotheses, and drawing conclusions) can be vague and each different language has different ways of expressing things that leads to differences. Then I said that science is fundamentally flawed in that it is looking to draw conclusions, and so it may connect events that are not connected

    then I offered the example of how up until around 20 years ago, cigarette companies advertised scientific experiments that proved cigarettes were safe, some even said they were good for you, and they quoted doctors in support. But then explained how today mostly everybody accepts that cigarettes are carcinogenic and many scientific experiments have collected evidence that they do cause lung cancer and concluded that a major limitation of science is that it gives the impression of being concrete while it is just as likely to be flawed as any other human subject.

    My conclusions reiterated some of my previous points (like scientists are human and therefore make mistakes like everyone else) but in the end I said how there comes a point, like with cigarettes today, where one must just accept a conclusion when masses evidence points to it. However, that science should not just be accepted and should be critically analysed like everything else.

    that was the basic idea of my essay, I think i'm forgetting some points though. I am a little nervous that I only had time to use one concrete example, but I think my essay was well organised and made good arguments... we'll find out soon.

    How did you approach the essay and which course are you applying for? Im for PPE... I think this was a philosophy question (?)
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    (Original post by calsbo)
    I dont fully remember what I wrote...

    but I started by explaining that science uses the tools of perception, reason, language and existing knowledge to offer possible explanations for occurrences in the world (I wrote it better then...) and then I showed how perception can be misleading and biased, reason can be incorrect, existing knowledge (ie past expirements) can be inconclusive, and language (for hypotheses, and drawing conclusions) can be vague and each different language has different ways of expressing things that leads to differences. Then I said that science is fundamentally flawed in that it is looking to draw conclusions, and so it may connect events that are not connected

    then I offered the example of how up until around 20 years ago, cigarette companies advertised scientific experiments that proved cigarettes were safe, some even said they were good for you, and they quoted doctors in support. But then explained how today mostly everybody accepts that cigarettes are carcinogenic and many scientific experiments have collected evidence that they do cause lung cancer and concluded that a major limitation of science is that it gives the impression of being concrete while it is just as likely to be flawed as any other human subject.

    My conclusions reiterated some of my previous points (like scientists are human and therefore make mistakes like everyone else) but in the end I said how there comes a point, like with cigarettes today, where one must just accept a conclusion when masses evidence points to it. However, that science should not just be accepted and should be critically analysed like everything else.

    that was the basic idea of my essay, I think i'm forgetting some points though. I am a little nervous that I only had time to use one concrete example, but I think my essay was well organised and made good arguments... we'll find out soon.

    How did you approach the essay and which course are you applying for? Im for PPE... I think this was a philosophy question (?)
    cool, I like your approach to the question! I answered it with something like this:

    1st I wrote that science is a result of the human intellect and that it has helped a huge deal in the development of our civilization and helped us to understand the world we live in better; but that it is also responsible for weapons, poisons and so on, which are destroying the world. Limitations to science should be imposed by us humans.

    Then I went on describing the characteristics of science, its reliance on empiristic methods and proofs, with examples of the "God-particle" or black holes, showing that valid theories aren't worth much without empiristic proof. The other characteristics are methodic abstraction and thematic reduction, which means that science only asks particular questions in their particular field, whereas, in comparison to philosophy, philosophy asks metaphysic questions: WHats the purpose of scientific results? SHould animal experiments be allowed? I stated that these are not questions of science but of philosophy, and there is the limitation of science, it never asks moral questions, its just the process.

    So, basically because I also thought it was a philosophic question, I simply compared science to philosophy and hereby showed the limitations of science... dunno hope its ok, what do you think?
    Don't worry about only bringing up one example, if its well structured, you don´t need more. I also like how you showed that science is very often flawed, and should always be critically analized.

    And, yes I'm also going for PPE, and I saw you're applying to ESPS at UCL, which I'm also doing. I see you´re from Boston, so did you apply to Harvard or other Ivy League Unis?!
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    (Original post by matija_v)
    ]
    Its interesting to see how you answered the same question in such a different way, yet still seem to have a good structure and good arguments. I like how you directly compared science and philosophy as they are extremely connected.

    I feel (hope) that in the essay the tutors want to see evidence of 'critical thinking' and the ability to formulate and express solid arguments, give evidence to back up claims, and be able to form this into an organised essay under pressure. Re-reading that it seems like a lot, but these are, from what I've understood, the skills necessary to be a successful PPE student, and what's the point of offering someone a place who is not going to be a successful student.

    Apparently some ESPS applicants have just gotten interview invitations but I haven't heard anything from UCL other than an acknowledgement.

    Boston is amazing but I've been here all my life and I've wanted to go to university in the UK since I was really little for various reasons. I actually wasn't planning on applying at all in the US.
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    (Original post by Merk that Sike of a Mike)
    i don't remember being one about the electoral system??
    nd i picked the question: "Since humanitarian intervention is acceptable, should Europe invade the USA because of its death penalty?"
    and i was relatively happy with it, took quite a different approach.
    Uh-oh. Looks like the TSA people are a little smarter than we first imagined.. If you didn't see my question... and I didn't see your question, cos if I had I would have answered it.....

    They set different papers for different centres/ time zones!!!
    At least, so I think...
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    (Original post by j1991)
    I see that most people have foudn the test ridiculously hard, and it's not just me.

    I hope they do lower the average for interviews. what are the chances ?
    everyone wishes. :p:
    But: if everyone did lower than average, then the average will fall, and therefore everyone would then have done averagely, and we'd be in the same position anyway...
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    (Original post by Oldspeak)
    was there one about the elctoral system or did i just not pay attention to the paper????

    I did the capital punishment one, it seems i'm the only one here to have done that!

    also, apparently colleges realease tsa results at different times so you're meant to call them up and ask.
    see? I swear, the papers were different!!
    My one had:

    1. something about science
    2. electoral systems
    3. whether the law was to make people good, or to stop people from being bad
    and 4. something I can't remember.

    Others have had the capital punishment/US-Europe one...
    I don't know... maybe you and Mike had the same paper??
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    I have no clue how you guys remember exactly what you put for a tonne of specific questions!

    For the essay I answered "What would happen if life expectancy increased?"

    My core argument was that it would essentially to be detrimental to any society/welfare state especially where potential overpopulation, rising birth rates immigration problems already existed.

    I said that possibly the demographic would alter, meaning that there would be more senior citizens than younger citizens and that from their longer life expectancies, we could infer that their health is better and therefore they are generally able to continue working for longer. I said this would increase the scarcity of jobs and whilst it can be argued that jobs are scarce anyway, it would dramatically increase to the point where wages would be kept very low; with hundreds of people fighting for one job, they are in more need than the employer and the employer then has the freedom to decrease the wages with little problem.

    I then discussed how this would affect the number of people claiming benefits and said that over time, claiming benefits and the seeming futility of trying to get a job would sap the morale of some people and out of frustration/inability to envision a better life for themselves, would lead some individuals to crime.

    Would've like to have gone into how this might have caused some people to scapegoat areas of society and possibly lead them to blame ethnic minorities/sway toward extremist support but I didn't have the time, so I just concluded what I said at the beginning, that generally, longer life expectancies aren't good for society, especially where population issues already exist, creating or exacerbating poverty.


    I have no idea whether that's a good or bad essay but I can only hope. I'm confused about the multiple choice, I can't tell if it went good or bad, it was difficult either way and I think the fact that we all found it challenging just shows that these things are designed to test us.

    Got my fingers crossed for everyone, especially for me
 
 
 
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