Welcome to College Confidential!

The leading college-bound community on the web

Sign Up For Free

Join for FREE, and start talking with other members, weighing in on community discussions, and more.

Also, by registering and logging in you'll see fewer ads and pesky welcome messages (like this one!)

As a CC member, you can:

  • Reply to threads, and start your own.
  • Post reviews of your campus visits.
  • Find hundreds of pages of informative articles.
  • Search from over 3 million scholarships.
Please take a moment to read our updated TOS, Privacy Policy, and Forum Rules.
jukjukenatorjukjukenator Registered User Posts: 11 New Member
edited August 2010 in International Students
Hey guys!
I find Oxford University in UK really interesting, so I am trying to gather as much information about the application process as possible right now.

Is it true that Oxford does not look at your GPA and transcript when applying from the US? I heard they just look at my SAT I, SAT II, and AP scores...
I would like to study medicine, so I plan on taking several Science AP Tests.

Can anybody help me please?

Post edited by jukjukenator on

Replies to: Oxford

  • BegonerBegoner Registered User Posts: 330 Member
    Yes, standardized test scores are the single most important factor. However, the interview is critical to the admissions process (also, you should mention a few related ECs in your personal statement).
  • gagilordgagilord Registered User Posts: 58 Junior Member

    My post is in no way meant to discourage you from applying but getting into Oxford to study medicine is very very very very hard. You really need to be a bright student. I have gone through the application process myself and have been offered a place. Here are some useful tips:

    Unlike US unievrsities, Oxford tends to look for individuals who know their subject back to front. They are not so much interested in whether you are a rounded individual; their main criteria is to see if you are really passionate about the subject (e.g. read about the subject extensively outside school). They want to see that you are ready to dedicate the next four years of your life studying that.

    The interview is the single most important part of your application. During the interview you will basically be cross examined by a couple of professors who will ask you specific question about your subject.

    Hope this helps. Best of luck!
  • jukjukenatorjukjukenator Registered User Posts: 11 New Member
    So just my standardized test scoes and the interview matters?
    Am I going to have to send my GPA and transcript of my courses as well? I know they don't count, but do they still want them?
    I thought British kids have to do that, so why don't I, the American, have to do it?
  • lOngbOWmeNlOngbOWmeN - Posts: 276 Junior Member
    although passion is an impt consideration, what they're really looking for is potential i.e. your teachability, your ability to think independently and laterally

    for instance during one of the nat-sci interviews, they threw a question on a mouse successfully navigating a maze even though the side which the entrance was at changed, asking how was the mouse able to do this, what factors would you add in/vary to test your results or prove your conjecture etc.....what they're looking for would probably be your ability to apply the stuff u've learnt (conditioned reflex, acquired memory etc.) and whether you can apply them in an independent and creative manner to further your own learning
  • lellislellis Registered User Posts: 17 New Member
    i'm going to oxford next year, and here's my advice:
    -medicine is not great to apply into from the u.s., unless at your school you're somehow taking a ton of advanced science classes. it's definitely not impossible, but since they concentrate earlier on, unless you are set on being a doctor in england, it might be better to apply in something else science-y and come back to the u.s. to go to med school (that's what i am doing-- and there are a lot of possibilities, from bio to physiology, etc.)
    -they do care about standardized tests the most, so take three SAT IIs, the SAT (if you are good at science, maybe take the ACT as well), as as many APs as you can. Basically, they will want you to have over 700 in all the SAT areas and subject tests, just to give you an idea. there's a table on their website that talks about general ap exam scores that are kind of the minimum, go check that out
    - I took 6 ap exams junior year. try to take at least four, but they can accept you conditionally (as in dependent upon your results of next year's ap exams). i did not even take them in the subjects i was applying into, so don't stress about how there aren't enough sciences.
    -the interview: do some external reading, argue with your interviewer(s), don't be intimidated if you don't know the answer-- that's the point, giving you stuff you don't know and seeing how you do.
    -the application: stick to your interest in the subject, unless you have an EC that really really directly relates.
    ok so this all seemsy crazy intense (i know a year ago it did to me too) BUT stick it out, apply, try your best, and good luck! it will be worth it.
  • cupcakecupcake Registered User Posts: 1,703 Senior Member
    Again, not meant to discourage you butjust to emphasise how hard it is....

    To get for medicine you have to do an extra test called BMAT.

    Medicine has a quota of international students. They have to fill all the vacancies in the UK National health Service before any internationals can be offered places. That means there are usually 7 places at most per year for internationals. That is for students of every country outside the EU.

    I'm not studying medicine so i am in no way an expert. However, there have been previous threads on this board about how transferable a UK medicine degree is to the US, and it appears that you would have to do lots of tests again. It isn't directly transferrable (though you could work in any European or Commonwealth country no probs. Emgirating to Australia is in vogue here right now). This could be very time-consuming and expensive. look up those previous threads.

    You know medicine in the UK is a 6 year intensive undergraduate course, right? You can actually move to another school after the first 3 years at Oxford. Some people go to London or Cambridge just for a change.
  • jukjukenatorjukjukenator Registered User Posts: 11 New Member
    Thanks for all the advice guys!
    But do I still have to send in my transcript and my grades in or not?
    Because if they don't value them, why would I have to send them in?
    Do I have to send them or not?
  • b@r!umb@r!um Registered User Posts: 10,173 Senior Member
    If you want to attend Oxford, you should be smart enough to find the information you are looking for at their website...
  • Rister_ChutophsRister_Chutophs Registered User Posts: 1,373 Senior Member
    hahaha b@rium this cracks me up.

    I was thinking EXACTLY the same thing when I read the post about 1 hour ago. and i already wrote something but then i deleted it again, coz I remembered that you reprimanded me (very gently though) the last time I critisized someone on CC :) and i thought like, just let him ask his questions...not worth the risk of an upset b@rium =)
  • jukjukenatorjukjukenator Registered User Posts: 11 New Member
    Well, let's ignore these 2 "funny" guys and come back to the actual topic.

    I can't find the information right now on the Oxford homepage cuz the app forms are not available... it says they will put them back on soon... could anybody with experience help me?
    Oh, by the way: Do you guys think it will help that I attend Andover?

    Manchmal sollte man einfach nicht kommentieren... findest du nicht barium? ;)
  • Rister_ChutophsRister_Chutophs Registered User Posts: 1,373 Senior Member
    Entrance Requirements - University of Oxford
    Successful candidates would typically have an excellent High School record supplemented by SAT I scores of at least 1,400 in Critical Reading and Mathematics and preferably also 700 or more in the Writing Paper, giving a combined score of at least 2,100, or ACT with a score of at least 32 out of 36. We would also expect Grade 5 in two or more Advanced Placement tests in appropriate subjects or SAT II two or three appropriate subjects at 700 or better.

    It took me about 2 minutes to find this...
    And attending Andover won't help you per se. However Andover students probably tend to do very well on AP tests so that might be an adventage.

    P.S. Manchmal sollte man einfach genauer schauen höhö
  • b@r!umb@r!um Registered User Posts: 10,173 Senior Member
    Have you started your UCAS application yet? If so, you should know that they ask you to list and provide details for all formal "certifications" you have completed or will complete by the time you finish high school - this includes both your high school diploma (including your grades) and AP & SAT exams.

    I don't know if Oxford pays attention to your grades, but the UCAS application (which is forwarded to Oxford) definitely asks for them!
  • jukjukenatorjukjukenator Registered User Posts: 11 New Member
    THANK YOU b@r!um! That helped!
    I didn't start the UCAS app yet, and the information I tried to find was not available on the Ox and UCAS homepage...I think the only way I could have gotten that information would have been by paying 5 pounds for the app... i am too cheap for that... ;) i don't even need it right now cuz it's too early...

    Now I know that they want my grades, but does anybody know if they pay any attention to my grades? I think I read that they don't before, but I just want to make sure...
    cupcake...can you help me? ;)
  • b@r!umb@r!um Registered User Posts: 10,173 Senior Member
    Wanna guess how I found out? I registered for a UCAS account and started an application. (You don't have to pay until you actually submit the application.)

    But you are welcome :)
  • cupcakecupcake Registered User Posts: 1,703 Senior Member
    See web-site linked by Rister above. I think it is pretty clear.

    They say they want an "excellent high school record", which obviously means they want students who are doing really well. Oxford is all about grades so they will pay attention to them, but anything which is externally marked and can be more easily compared to others (eg APs and SATs) has more weight.

    Actually in the UK the US grading system is thought about as a bit weird because it's all relative. I mean if you high school teacher doesn't like you, they could give you low grades on a whim. Also, how you compared to the rest of your class is meaningless as you could be bottom of a class of geniuses or top of a class of idiots. A-levels (which UK students do age 16-18) consist of exams adn 'coursework' (work done in class) over two years which are marked anonymously by external examiners, not your teachers. So it is easy to compare to everyone else in the country and not biased by teachers.

    No-one is going to reassure you by saying grades don't matter. They do, if anything much MORE in the UK than in the US. It's the grades which get you the interview (and BMAT if you want to do medicine). At interview stage it's up to you.
This discussion has been closed.