Today we have a special feature with Raf about the law interview at Oxford.
Hi Raf, how many interviews did you have?
Normally for law you have two interviews. If you apply for law with law studies in Europe (French, Spanish or Italian) then you will also have an interview to test your competency in this language. Sometimes it's a test of reading comprehension, sometimes it's just a chat. Some people had extra interviews at other colleges but I'm sure the pooling system has been covered elsewhere!
What were the different interviews on?
They will cover controversial areas of law but you're not expected to know any of the law. One was put to me as a thought experiment (I didn't learn about the controversy it referred to until my second year). The other, I was given a judgment which we discussed.
Were you given any unseen material?
The judgment was unseen. We had about 30 minutes to read and prep before the interview. If there is material for the language interview, this is also unsighted - it can be news articles, extracts from books, etc.
Did the tutors push you outside of your comfort zone?
With law you will be immediately out of your comfort zone because of the informative asymmetry. In addition, they will throw up counter arguments and other points of view throughout the interview, as well as pressing you to explain the rationale behind what you're saying.
What advice would you give prospective applicants?
Be willing to change your mind if presented with evidence or arguments you had not considered. Explain why you think they're persuasive (or not, if that's the case). Ask for time to think, you'll need it!