I have basically two questions about applying to Oxford. A bit of information first:
I will be a senior this fall at an American public high school. I have a strong interest in literature and have done much relevant reading outside of school. My SAT I superscore is a 2300 (I took it twice). I have only taken one SAT II (World History), on which I received a 700, and have gotten two 5’s on APs (AP US History and English Lang) and a 4 (World History again). (I understand that these tests are not necessarily relevant to my subject…?) Freshman through junior year I took French, my language of choice, and made all A’s, but I haven’t taken an AP or SAT II in the subject, and it’s too late now.
Even though extracurriculars play a smaller role in UK admissions than here, it is probably worth noting that in addition to a somewhat wide (for my age) reading of classic works, I have won a national writing award (Scholastic), have specialized in creative writing at my arts high school, and have interned as an editor and writer for a local magazine’s blog; I also play piano and have had original works performed, and I’ve volunteered many hours for my school’s literacy club and taught music at a special needs school with which I have an unusual connection.
Question #1: So, assuming I write a very strong personal statement conveying said interest/extracurriculars, do you think I have a chance at admission into English and Modern Languages, or should I play it safe and just apply for an English degree?
Question #2: I am also interested in philosophy. There is no official joint programme called English and Philosophy. Can I still take philosophy classes? (Similarly, I understand there is a language centre. Would it be worth it to major in English and simultaneously absorb outside language and philosophy classes?)
Thanks for reading all this!
P.S.: A 3-year degree is preferable to a 4-year one to my family for financial reasons, but it is not absolutely imperative. If you have any financial advice, it would be well-received!