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Please check the latest criteria before applying for 2017-18

1.  Criteria

Within equal opportunities principles and legislation, applications will be assessed in the light of a candidate’s ability to meet the following criteria:

2.  Academic ability

Proven and potential academic excellence.

Applicants are normally expected to be predicted or to have achieved a first-class or an upper second class undergraduate degree (or equivalent international qualifications[1]) in a scientific subject

For applicants with a degree from the USA, the minimum GPA we seek is 3.5 out of 4.0.

However, entrance is very competitive and most successful applicants have a first-class degree or international equivalent (e.g. a GPA of at least 3.7 out of 4.0).

Appropriate indicators will include:

Academic references/letters of recommendation which support intellectual ability, academic achievement, motivation, and ability to work in a group.

Personal statement This must be in English and be of no more than 1,000 words. It will be assessed for: your reasons for applying; evidence of motivation for and understanding of the proposed area of study; the ability to present a reasoned case in English; commitment to the subject beyond the requirements of the degree course; capacity for sustained and intense work; reasoning ability; ability to absorb new ideas, often presented abstractly, at a rapid pace.

Performance at interview

Candidates who are shortlisted are normally interviewed as part of the admissions process. There will be a minimum of 3 academics on the interview panel. Candidates will be selected for interview based on their submitted application. The interviews will be held on Thursday January 28th and Friday January 29th  2016. All interviews will be held in Oxford. The interview will last 30 minutes and will consist of a 10 minute oral presentation on a piece of independent research, followed by questions on that research by the panel of interviewers and more general questions on your interests in neuroscience.

3. Other qualifications and experience

Evidence of a prior interest in the area of research proposed is likely to advantage a candidate’s application.

4. Availability of supervision, teaching, facilities and places

The following factors will govern whether candidates can be offered places:

  • There are minimum and maximum limits to the numbers of students who may be admitted onto Oxford’s research and taught programmes.

5.  English language requirement

Applicants whose first language is not English are usually required to provide evidence of proficiency in English at the higher level required by the University.

6. Deadlines and required full set of application materials

Please refer to the Graduate Admissions website for information on the deadlines which must be met, and the full set of supporting materials required, in order for applications to be guaranteed to be considered.

7. Disability, health conditions and specific learning difficulties.

Students are selected for admission without regard to gender, marital or civil partnership status, disability, race, nationality, ethnic origin, religion or belief, sexual orientation, age or social background. Decisions on admission are based solely on the individual academic merits of each candidate and the application of the selection criteria appropriate to the programme of study. Further information on how these matters are supported during the admissions process is available here.

8. Other information

  • We encourage prospective applicants to communicate with us in order to refine their application, especially where scholarships are involved.

9. Assessors

All applications will be assessed by at least 3 members of academic staff with relevant experience and expertise. 

10. Course webpage See the link on the graduate admissions webpages


[1] If you hold non-British qualifications, you are advised to check with the National Recognition Information Centre for the United Kingdom (UK NARIC) how your qualifications match these requirements.