6x 30 min interviews, each half a day to a day apart
Warm-up questions, maths questions
MAT and other questions, talking through solutions aloud to self
Be persevering with hard problems.
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: 6
Skype interview: No
Time between each interview: half a day to a day
Length of interviews: about 30 minutes each
Both of my interviews at my first college began with a general warm-up question, one about my general feelings on the subject personally and one about something I’d mentioned on my personal statement. One of my other interviews began with the
The bulk of all interviews consisted of the tutor giving me (difficult) questions, me taking a stab at them, and them directing me in particular directions by asking questions that led me to certain approaches. My comfort level varied - in my first college’s interviews, I was nervous but able to quickly relax and enjoy solving the problems. This was also true for my second college’s interviews. By my third college’s interviews, I was tired and so felt less sharp and more insecure. It didn’t help that one of these interviews had questions that were very heavily based on theoretical calculus (it was the only one with this type of question), so I felt more intimidated. The tutors were all fairly cordial, just very no-nonsense.
I took practice papers from the official
I mostly prepared for the interviews by reviewing old math notes and MAT tests and making sure I knew all the material well. I also practiced walking through these problems out loud (by myself) to get used to explaining my thought process. I also mentally prepared myself to be called out for mistakes and corrected or redirected. I don’t think I would do anything differently - this mix of preparation techniques made sure I understood the material but also the nature of the interviews and how they were not about being correct but about being adaptable and able to take constructive criticism.
I think one of the big things the