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BIOLOGY
Asked by Minnie

I want to apply for Oxbridge to do biology or maybe biochemistry. What is the application and interview process like for a science and how can you stand out in order to get a place?

You send your personal statement before October 15 through ucas to be considered for a place in the following year. You then sit an entrance exam approximately two weeks after this and then get called for an interview. You generally stay overnight for a day or two. The length or amount of interviews you receive if they decide to interview you is no indication of whether you receive an offer or not so don't read into this too much. Look at the specific entrance test for your subject. Make sure you practice and get a high enough mark so that you are in the top percentile. Look at past papers on their website and research what marks most students achieved that received an offer/interview and aim for this. This is a main factor in determining whether you get an interview or not Your personal statement needs to show your interest in your subject, you evidence this by any reading you have done yourself outside of your compulsory curriculum or any activities/experience you have sought out yourself related to the subject. Write what you liked about your particular experience and mainly what you got out of it. Interview: know the content of your A-level/IB or current qualifications you are studying for, as some questions may rely on you having knowledge of the subject you are studying. Be calm and relaxed - treat the interview as if you are having a conversion with someone who is equally passionate about your chosen subject as you. The answers usually aren't as important as the reasoning behind your answers. Interviewers will want to see your thought process and how you deal with unknown problems they won't always expect you to know the answer. For this reason they may also ask something unrelated to your subject interviews can be one-to-one or 2/3 people interviewing you in a room. It is very likely you'll have more than one interview during your stay if you are selected for interviewing. you will sometimes be questioned on things you have written in your personal statement so make sure you prepare for any questions they could have. Research what people who were also interviewed by Oxford for your subject were asked. Finally keep up to date with the latest news connected to your subject i.e. New discoveries etc Also recommend reading scientific journals to display your interest and just genuinely having in interest in the field you would like to apply for. You will stand out if you have unique experiences related to your field and can succinctly explain what you gained from this and how it interests you. Only include things in your personal statement if you can relate them back to your chosen field. E.g. If studying A level English, you could say this will help logically structure your writing to better explain scientific theories with ease and accuracy... (Make sure you have the right qualifications to apply for your chosen subject/are on track to get them)

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Harleen Hothi
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