How Oxford Sample Interview Questions Help With Interview Preparation

Oxbridge Interviews are hard to prepare for! Fortunately, sample Oxford Interview questions can help you get started. Today we take you through how to use Oxford sample Interview questions to best prepare and practice for the Interview.

Author: Zayra Morales

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Oxbridge Interviews are hard to prepare for! Fortunately, sample Oxford Interview questions can help you get started.

In this article, we hope to focus on this process and help to explain how potential students can use Oxford sample Interview questions to best prepare and practice for the Interview. Here’s how to approach the whole process with some useful techniques under your belt.

Breaking it down and focusing on the key points

One of the first things to do, which can make a big difference to an applicant’s overall mindset for their application, is to think about the main qualities that you want to demonstrate to the interviewers or admissions tutors. The photo below shows what Oxford admissions tutors look for in their Medical School applicants

This is a different question to, “What do the interviewers want to see”. No one should try to change themselves to please the tutors. It is still good, however, to make as much impact as possible in a short space of time. It helps steady nerves and it helps to make the whole process more enjoyable overall.

Oxford sample Interview questions can then be used to try and practice articulating key points that a student wants to get across. For example, the key points to consider could include:

Applicants should think about the sorts of Interview questions that can come up and how they might be able to highlight their main points, such as the ones above.

For example, in the very commonly-asked “Why do you want to apply to Oxford?”, students can answer with their excitement about the tutorial system. Of course, applicants can’t always expect the question to be relevant to some of their points.

There are also questions that will just be an assessment of how students think. We will discuss these later on. However, it can still be very useful to keep the key points in mind and be ready to draw on them when it is relevant. As the Interview goes by very quickly, no one wants to leave having not been able to mention the most important things that they wanted to.

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Make it personal – using examples

One of the biggest pieces of advice we give to students about Oxford Interviews is to always include references and examples.

This is the best way to make an answer personal, to be more memorable to the interviewer, and also to bring in the preparation work that you have been doing to credit and show how well you would fit in at Oxford. Using Oxford sample Interview questions with that particular target in mind is, therefore, another useful exercise to do.

Take the list of questions for the subject you wish to study (Oxford itself gives a list on its own website, and there are also a few easily findable ones online or in books).

Go through them and ask the following:

This is also a good way to build on our first point, which we covered in the section above. Once the main points have been identified, it’s easy for an applicant to think it’s all well and good saying they’re “academically motivated”. But anyone can say that, how can someone stand out from the crowd?

An idea is to take each question, one by one from a list of sample Interview questions, and think “can I bring this back to myself, and if so, can I use an example to make it even stronger”. Again, this won’t apply to every single question, but it is a bit of a step-by-step process that will help with answering questions more smoothly and quickly in the real Interview.

Working through a problem

Many questions are simply designed to find out how you think. This is especially true for hard science subjects or Maths, where you are given entire problems to work through, but the same idea is true for all other courses as well.

An important part of academia is communicating your ideas to other people. Your Interview will be the beginning of that process which then continues in tutorials throughout your degree. For these types of questions, students don’t have to worry about the ‘right’ answer. Instead, you should try to focus on where to start answering the question.

Communications skills also include being able to explain your thought processes to the interviewer, especially if you find a question particularly difficult.

Oxford sample Interview questions shouldn’t be looked at as a prediction of what might come up. They also shouldn’t be used in order to draw conclusions of what is a “typical” Oxford question. Really, it’s best to use the Oxford sample Interview questions to make an unfamiliar process familiar.

This means whatever material or question actually comes up, you will be able to give it your best shot and explain your thinking step by step. Good luck!

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