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oxbridgedreamer

Help with Oxbridge Masters Application!

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*re-posting here*

Hello! 

I'm an American student with a weird situation. I graduated from undergrad with a GPA below 3.0 (Second Lower Class in UK), waited 3 years and then went to a relatively prestigious law school and graduated in the top 5 of my class. I want to apply to Oxbridge (not for the BCL or an MPhil/LLM in law) for a masters, but I really don't know if I have a shot. To muddy the waters even further, I belong to one of the smallest minority groups at Oxbridge: African-American men. I'm not sure how this would factor, but I'm genuinely unsure of how I'd fare applying to these schools with my dismal undergraduate performance.

Any guidance at all would be greatly appreciated!! Thank you 

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On 3/25/2019 at 2:46 PM, oxbridgedreamer said:

*re-posting here*

Hello! 

I'm an American student with a weird situation. I graduated from undergrad with a GPA below 3.0 (Second Lower Class in UK), waited 3 years and then went to a relatively prestigious law school and graduated in the top 5 of my class. I want to apply to Oxbridge (not for the BCL or an MPhil/LLM in law) for a masters, but I really don't know if I have a shot. To muddy the waters even further, I belong to one of the smallest minority groups at Oxbridge: African-American men. I'm not sure how this would factor, but I'm genuinely unsure of how I'd fare applying to these schools with my dismal undergraduate performance.

Any guidance at all would be greatly appreciated!! Thank you 

I hope this reply is in time to be useful (since their application rounds run in the autumn, it should be).

There are some programmes at Oxford and Cambridge for which relevant professional experience and motivation might more than make up for a poor performance in an undergrad degree, especially given that that degree isn't even your most recent qualification. These tend to be slightly more vocational courses. In an application, you could point to your law school performance as proof that you can study effectively, and also as evidence that your academic performance has been on an upward trajectory. Your best bet, I think, would be to email the graduate admissions office who cover whichever programme you're interested in, and ask them. 

The UK government is increasingly pushing on access & diversity in British universities, and plenty of individual people and institutional facets within Oxford and Cambridge are concerned about minority access. However, at the moment that government action is very much focused on undergraduate admissions and, within undergraduate admissions, on applicants who are resident in the UK. Large-scale institutional thinking about access hasn't really reached international students or graduate students yet, though it probably should.

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On 4/12/2019 at 7:48 AM, QHF said:

I hope this reply is in time to be useful (since their application rounds run in the autumn, it should be).

There are some programmes at Oxford and Cambridge for which relevant professional experience and motivation might more than make up for a poor performance in an undergrad degree, especially given that that degree isn't even your most recent qualification. These tend to be slightly more vocational courses. In an application, you could point to your law school performance as proof that you can study effectively, and also as evidence that your academic performance has been on an upward trajectory. Your best bet, I think, would be to email the graduate admissions office who cover whichever programme you're interested in, and ask them. 

The UK government is increasingly pushing on access & diversity in British universities, and plenty of individual people and institutional facets within Oxford and Cambridge are concerned about minority access. However, at the moment that government action is very much focused on undergraduate admissions and, within undergraduate admissions, on applicants who are resident in the UK. Large-scale institutional thinking about access hasn't really reached international students or graduate students yet, though it probably should.

Thank you so much! This helps a lot as I think about going forward with the application. 

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