Maths Admissions at Mansfield College, Oxford

See also

and also, for information about the Oxford University Maths course and a profile of a Mansfield student (Dan Harvey),

and for Maths and Philosophy: Maths and Philosophy information

and for Maths and Statistics: Maths and Statistics information links to the Oxford Maths Institute Website

Mansfield College

Mathematics and Philosophy
Mathematics and Statistics


Dr Janet Dyson, Fellow in Mathematics
Derek Goldrei, Lecturer in Mathematics
Dr Jonathan Marchini, Senior Research Fellow in Statistical Genomics

The College admits about six mathematicians per year.  Our students have a strong academic record and over the past decade they have done particularly well with around 43% getting firsts, 41% upper seconds and the remainder lower seconds.  Our students have been particularly successful over the past three years with 60% getting firsts.

Although most of our successful candidates have A grades in both Mathematics and Further Mathematics A-levels by the time they arrive in Oxford, about a quarter have a single A-level in Mathematics or other qualifications such as Scottish Highers, Irish Leaving Certificate or the International Baccalaureate.  Such candidates are very much encouraged to apply.  They have to work hard to catch up, but a number have gone on to get First Class Honours in Finals.  If you can work independently you will find this a great advantage at university and particularly those not doing Mathematics as a double subject at A-level should try to do some reading on their own.

We accept candidates from a wide variety of educational backgrounds and always make allowance, in the admissions process, for the amount of help candidates have received with their preparation. We are looking for candidates with academic potential and motivation, who have the necessary perseverance and are able to think for themselves.

There are three tutors in Mathematics: Janet Dyson, with interests chiefly in analysis and differential equations, Derek Goldrei whose interests are mainly in mathematical logic and algebra, and Jonathan Marchini who specialises in statistics.  Mansfield is situated within a few minutes walk of both the Mathematical Institute and the Radcliffe Science Library.

All candidates will be set a test. The form of the test may vary from year to year but for some specimen tests with sample solutions and a past test see:

Candidates generally have one interview at Mansfield, though occasionally there is a second interview. Candidates will also have an interview at another college. The majority of the interview will be spent talking about mathematics and you will be asked to work through two or three problems on a white board.  We expect to have to give some help with these and we want to see how quick you are to take a hint, how well you understand the material you have learnt at school or college, and whether you can think for yourself and absorb and use new ideas. We are looking for potential rather than a large mass of accumulated knowledge.

Those wishing to read Maths and Philosophy will also have an interview in Philosophy and those wishing to read Maths and Statistics will also have an interview in Statistics.

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