HAA and MLAA; 2x interviews
Interview 1: German; personal statement; Interview 2: History; pre-submitted essay
Practise papers and summarising ranodm articles in German
Use mentoring schemes if possible; know every component of your application inside out; focus on source analysis skills
Remember this advice isn't official. There is no guarantee it will reflect your experience because university applications can change between years. Check the official Cambridge and Oxford websites for more accurate information on this year's application format and the required tests.
Also, someone else's experience may not reflect your own. Most interviews are more like conversations than tests and like, any conversation, they are quite interactive.
Number of interviews: 2
Skype interview: No
Time between interviews: 1 hour 30 minutes
Length of first interview: 20 minutes; Length of second interview: 20 minutes
First Interview: This one was for German. I had one interviewer and a PhD student taking notes on me. The first question was about my personal statement as an easy introduction to the interview to cool my nerves. We then moved onto an extract in German that I had been given to read for about 10 minutes prior to the interview, and I was asked about who I thought the author was, their opinions and where they might be writing from. I then was asked some grammar questions; basic ones that tested my understanding of tenses, gender, cases and declension, and so on. We then spoke in German about the extract for about 5 minutes. I was then asked if I had any questions and it was over.
Second Interview: This was the history interview and it was in the same format. I had read extracts outside the room on a city in the 16th century from the opinion of three different people. In the interview I was asked in depth about these and asked to speculate on who the authors were, their position in society, the time it was written, and was also asked how I might investigate and substantiate my claims here: they want you to really be creative and pick apart the extract and speculate a lot on little things. We then spoke about my essay submission which was on the Korean War and I was asked in depth about my comments and arguments and asked about the differences between Russian and Chinese communism.
I used practice papers. For the
I applied for a place on the Oxbridge Mentoring Scheme run by Insight Outreach. I cannot stress enough how useful this was and recommend any student that is eligible to apply take this up. I received some
Looking back, I think all humanities applicants need to know 1) their A-Level course (or equivalent); 2) their essay submissions; and 3) any books or historical periods mentioned in their personal statement absolutely inside and out. On top of this, your source analysis skills are by far the