Advanced Masterclass for Oxbridge Candidates

A sheep, a goat or a camel, which is best? The chances of being asked that in interview are next to zero but trying to predict any question that may come up is about as pointless as worrying too much about what you’d say to this one, although it is worth using sample questions to practise the skills. Despite their reputation for eccentricity, you can trust there to be a sensible academic reason behind every Oxbridge question and an opportunity to show intellectual sparkle. By taking the ceiling off your thinking and spotting the scope for interpretation, you can set the criteria for analytical debate.

The Edge is a one-day course open to all subject disciplines, full of hands-on tasks to improve higher-order thinking skills and interview technique. This course has been highly commended by many leading schools across the country.

Loading...
  • What is that extra something else they are looking for?
  • What kinds of questions will they ask me?
  • Why do they ask those kinds of questions?
  • How can I show originality in my answers?
  • What should I do if they disagree with me?
  • What should I do if I can’t think of an answer?
  • How can I use my personal statement to better my interview?
  • How can I best use my time between now and the interview?

An Oxbridge interview is not just a friendly chat about your favourite subject or your hobbies and interests. They will push you, challenge you and expect you to be able to hold your own as they throw tough questions your way. This is a conversation that could change the rest of your life so how do you use every minute of it to stand out?

Exploring situations likely to come up at interview, students gain new insight in a challenging, yet supportive environment. The day is packed with tips about interview technique and coping with intellectually rigorous conversation under pressure, all in the context of discussion and skills-based workshops.

Advanced Masterclass for Oxbridge Candidates

A sheep, a goat or a camel, which is best? The chances of being asked that in interview are next to zero but trying to predict any question that may come up is about as pointless as worrying too much about what you’d say to this one, although it is worth using sample questions to practise the skills. Despite their reputation for eccentricity, you can trust there to be a sensible academic reason behind every Oxbridge question and an opportunity to show intellectual sparkle. By taking the ceiling off your thinking and spotting the scope for interpretation, you can set the criteria for analytical debate.

The Edge is a one-day course open to all subject disciplines, full of hands-on tasks to improve higher-order thinking skills and interview technique. This course has been highly commended by many leading schools across the country.

Loading...
  • What is that extra something else they are looking for?
  • What kinds of questions will they ask me?
  • Why do they ask those kinds of questions?
  • How can I show originality in my answers?
  • What should I do if they disagree with me?
  • What should I do if I can’t think of an answer?
  • How can I use my personal statement to better my interview?
  • How can I best use my time between now and the interview?

An Oxbridge interview is not just a friendly chat about your favourite subject or your hobbies and interests. They will push you, challenge you and expect you to be able to hold your own as they throw tough questions your way. This is a conversation that could change the rest of your life so how do you use every minute of it to stand out?

Exploring situations likely to come up at interview, students gain new insight in a challenging, yet supportive environment. The day is packed with tips about interview technique and coping with intellectually rigorous conversation under pressure, all in the context of discussion and skills-based workshops.

If you’re sceptical about how we might keep a group of sparky teenagers engaged and focused for a whole day, don’t be. This course is delivered by Emily Wiser, the director and founder of Wiser Words, who has 14 years experience of running masterclasses specifically for Oxbridge candidates with consistently glowing feedback. Once they have received an offer, many successful students have reported The Edge to be the most helpful part of their preparation programme.

Emily has an in-depth understanding of what admissions tutors are looking for firstly from her own personal educational journey and then many years of working in the field professionally. As a facilitator, she is quickly able to create a friendly, supportive environment where students feel encouraged yet challenged. All activities are original so students won’t have done anything like them before. There are no lectures. Students learn by applying themselves and discovering just what they can do through the experience of having a go.

We don’t shy away from the fact that an Oxbridge interview is an intellectually demanding situation so, although it’s delivered with sensitivity, The Edge is an academically adventurous course.

Daring lateral thinking, structuring arguments, identifying objective criteria, spotting the scope for interpretation, deductive reasoning and steering the conversation to your advantage, all find their way into the day’s activities.

“Expertly delivered with great verve and intelligence”

“Really helpful (a little scary!) but good fun, worthwhile and motivating – it reminded me how much work I need to do!”

“Less cheesy, more original, stimulating, encouraging and personal. Leaders genuinely care and inspire.”

The goal for The Edge is simple – to help students get a place at a great university studying a subject they love. To achieve that, this course is the antithesis of spoon-feeding. Embedded in the content throughout the day is the message that they need to be proactive, switched on and inquisitive as the drivers of their own educational journey. So as you would expect, there are no ‘model answers’ and we don’t ‘tell’ them what to say!

After years in an education system that trains you in the habit of meeting marking criteria and asking, “is this relevant for the exam?” it can be quite an upheaval to let go of that approach and be more adventurous. People suggest you do some background reading but where do you start? In this Masterclass, we don’t just tell students about the something else that Oxbridge tutors are looking for; we give them a feel for it through experience, intellectual challenge and encouragement. With lots of tips about handling tough interview questions and insight into why they ask them, this course will show students how to make the most of every opportunity to show their academic potential.

We appreciate that our visit should compliment and fit in with the rest of your Oxbridge programme. We will therefore endeavour to learn as much as we can about this in our conversations with you on the phone and then tailor the course accordingly.  We’d also be glad to offer advice on the day for post-course follow up after we have spent a day getting to know your students.

The Edge is always very well received by our Oxbridge candidates. Under Emily’s careful guidance and charismatic leadership, the pupils become animated and articulate and start thinking in far more creative ways. She taps into their imagination and curiosity, inspires them to climb out of the exam-focused ruts they may have got into and carefully nudges them into challenging ideas, developing thoughts in new and interesting directions and collaborating with others to solve gritty problems. They all emerge from the day tired but exhilarated at having been taken a long way outside their comfort zone and pushed to take risks, stick their necks out and challenge themselves as well as others.”

Paul Crosfield, Director of Studies, The Leys, Cambridge

“All Oxbridge interviewees will have impressive academic track records and personal statements that show a real passion for their chosen subject. The hardest part of any interview is demonstrating the thinking and application skills that would be expected in an Oxbridge tutorial or supervision. The Edge does exactly what says on the tin: it gives students the edge by training them to think around a problem, form conclusions, apply their knowledge and articulate their thoughts in front of their peers. I would highly recommend the course to anyone who is likely to face an academically rigorous interview in any subject.”

Ray Peacock, Oxbridge Co-ordinator, The Grammar School at Leeds
“Much more useful than other courses I’ve been on.” “A must for Oxbridge candidates”
“It has vastly helped to make me more aware of how important it is to think about various topics and ideas.”
“Made me think more about how to answer questions more constructively to lead on to a more interesting conversation, and how to present my enthusiasm and ideas about my subject.”
“Helpful, amusing, good for confidence.”

Students from Plymouth College

“Instead of being a complete wreck when I think about the interview, I now feel like I have a base line to work from and it’s inspired me to find out more about my subject.”

Students from Ridgeway School

“Enriching, and I’m now more aware of the complexities of questions and the potential intellectual debate that could follow.”

Students from Eastbourne College
“Fantastic! I really enjoyed it and I definitely think that more days like this should be offered at our school!”
“It has shown me the need to be specific and give examples and not waffle!”
“Really helpful (a little scary!) but good fun, worthwhile and motivating – it reminded me how much work I need to do!”
“It has made me feel more confident and more motivated to research more about my subject.”
“It has taught me to answer a question in a better way and made me think more deeply.”

Students from Burford School
“I found the whole experience amazing. It was highly fascinating, mentally stimulating and really helpful for Oxbridge preparation.”
“It really opened my eyes to the interviewing process.”
“It’s made me realise how much more you can achieve by thinking outside the box and looking at things from completely different perspectives.”
“Definitely the most useful Oxbridge applications course I’ve been on.”
“I liked that there was a range of activities rather than just a lecture.”
“I would definitely recommend this course to others hoping to apply for Oxbridge. It was well worth the time and was lead by a very capable and suitable leader.”

Students from Thomas Telford School
“This was brilliant compared to all the other courses I’ve had in my 17 years. Truly inspirational, I have no higher praise.”
“It has shown me how to articulate my natural spark for my favoured subject. It was also very influential in building my confidence.”
“Less cheesy, more original, stimulating, encouraging and personal. Leaders genuinely care and inspire.”

Students from Warlingham Sixth Form College

“It’s made a huge impact. I feel much better about the interview, what to expect and how to react. Incredibly stimulating, with continuous return to how to apply skills in an Oxbridge interview situation.”

Student from Lady Eleanor Holles School
“I was constantly bombarded with questions that were very challenging. It made me develop the skill of being able to think quickly and sensibly.”
“I really really enjoyed it. I loved the discussion and the fact that you always had to think intellectually before saying something.”
“Taught me to think more objectively about questions interviewers might ask.”
“I enjoyed how mentally stimulated I was throughout the entire day. I felt I was constantly thinking around the subject.”
“I’ve learned to be more objective when formulating an argument to make it much stronger overall.”
“Excellent! Really makes you think twice about how to answer questions.”
“Taking the answers to a whole new dimension.”
“Everything was hard to some extent but that’s what I came for. Well worth it. I learnt A LOT!”
“All the exercises actually did help me find or develop something that would give me “The Edge”.”

Students from Heathland School
“I enjoyed the active way in which we explored ideas and stretched the way we think.”
“It made me excited to challenge myself more. Very well managed and structured leading to a brilliant course.”

Students from Farmors School
“I was constantly motivated and recharged with varying discussions and tasks.”
“Outstanding! Very stimulating and inspiring.”

Students from Gordons School
“It has made me think deeper into seemingly obvious questions and explore them.”
“A very worthwhile day.”
“It has shown me how I will need to think at an interview.”
“Excellent. Really helpful, worthwhile and fun.”

Students from Queen Elizabeth’s Grammar School
“The debates and questioning were most enjoyable because you could have a proper intellectual conversation without feeling embarrassed.”
“Much better than other courses. The content was stimulating, relevant and extremely challenging.”
“I enjoyed being pushed and challenged to my limit.”

Students from Parmiter’s School

They say…

“Now I can definitely win arguments against my brother! It has opened my eyes to a whole new world of possible answers.”

Student from St Swithun’s School

“This was brilliant compared to all the other courses I’ve had in my 17 years. Truly inspirational, I have no higher praise.”

Student from Warlingham College

“It made me excited to challenge myself more. Very well managed and structured leading to a brilliant course.”

Student from Farmors School

“I was constantly motivated and recharged with varying discussions and tasks.”

Student from Gordons School

“Enriching, and I’m now more aware of the complexities of questions and the intellectual debate that could follow.”

Student from Eastbourne College

“I found this day exciting, exhilarating and full of new ideas and things for me to enjoy.”

Student from Merchant Taylors’ School

“The puzzles were thrilling to solve but also very clever and challenging.”

Student from Newbold Community School

“We got to do everything ourselves and think for ourselves without being spoonfed.”

Student from Sibford School

“I enjoyed getting up to lead. I really didn’t think I’d be able to do it but I felt really good when I did.”

Student from Pocklington School

“Amazing and a huge learning curve for me and the whole of my year group. It really developed my communicating skills.”

Students from Blackheath High School

“It was just fantastic. I loved it! The best bit was seeing everyone’s amazing designs.”

Student from Oakham School

“100% the best course I’ve ever been on. A great experience and I would love to do it again. Every activity was amazing.”

Student from John Fisher Community College

Work with
other schools

Bringing students together from different schools is great for their communication skills, brings in a mix of fresh ideas and an element of healthy competition!
Read more

Advancing
education

We are specialists in education. The design of every course has a reason behind it relating to advanced teaching practice.
Read more

Numbers
don’t lie

96% of students who have attended other courses say that our courses are better!
Read more reviews