Walking through the Bodleian Quad into Radcliffe Square | Photograph by Sophia Rhee (MSc Environmental Change and Management)

“I am delighted to inform you…”

What happens after Oxford says ‘Yes’

It can be hard to imagine everything going your way when you submit your grad applications.

Once they get to Oxford, students often tell us that at first they struggled to believe that they would make it to the offer stage. Some weren’t even initially sure if they should apply, even though they met all Oxford’s requirements.

We’ve been following some of our students who wrote about their experience of getting an offer from Oxford before they started the course.

Read more about their individual stories below, from getting their offer letter to how they actually found studying at Oxford.

I’m coming for you, Oxford

Tina Shah, MBA

“Remember when I moved across the country a year ago? This September I’ll be leaving it entirely, just for a year. I’m not sure if I chose the nomadic life or the nomadic life chose me, but I’m happy to be living it…no rest for the wicked and all that. I’m coming for you, Saïd Business School!”

“It’s really easy to love this place…”

The day Oxford said ‘Yes’

Cláudia Coleoni, MSc in Water Science, Policy and Management

“The waiting period can be challenging. There was not a single day I wouldn’t think of my application to Oxford. Will I be accepted? When will the result be out? And so many other questions that crossed my mind.

But I learned to be patient and in ease with myself, knowing I had given the best of myself, within my own possibilities. ‘What’s yours is already reserved to you’, my close friends would always remind me. I dreamed big, but I had both of my feet on the ground.”

“Have you ever had that feeling of completely belonging to a place? That’s how I feel here at Oxford — simply at home!

There’s no way to put it down in words, but it feels like I knew every corner (and charm) of this place — even my friends here told me so! This is so beautiful and magical at the same time!”

It’s official — I’m going to Oxford

Ekaterina Shatalova, MSt in English

“I was captivated instantly within minutes of getting off the train from London, I knew I was somewhere special.

Ekaterine Shatalova: “Throwing a coin into the Christ Church Cloister fountain and wishing to return back”

Walking among the ancient colleges and visiting great libraries I was in absolute awe of all the knowledge concentrated there.

By the end of the day, I knew I had a deep affinity with this place, and at that point I had not even considered applying to English universities. This day was to change my life. ”

“Every time I walk past these buildings, my heart stops. And every time is like the first.”

Starting a PhD at Oxford

João Coelho, DPhil in Anthropology

“Last week I was delighted to get an offer letter from their School of Anthropology. My research will be in the area of Geospatial Paleoanthropology, meaning using remote sensing to discover potential hot spots of fossil human ancestors. Plus, I got an excellent supporting team as well!”

Arriving in Oxford

Stephen Douglas, EMBA

“Last July, a soldier at a checkpoint suddenly and irrevocably handed me a tiny kitten that had been wounded during the previous evening’s fighting. It was the same day that I heard that Oxford Saïd Business School had accepted me into its EMBA programme.”

“Running alongside Christ Church meadow and the Isis, as dawn broke across a red-streaked sky…I never thought I’d experience this feeling as an Oxford student.”


Matriculation | Photograph by Sophia Rhee (MSc Environmental Change and Management)

Every year, thousands of applicants will find an offer from Oxford waiting in their inbox

Decisions usually take around eight to ten weeks after the deadline you applied to. There’s only a few more weeks now for decisions from the big January deadlines.

We will be welcoming thousands of new students to the University here before the end of the year — and for some of you reading this, even though you might not believe it yet, it’ll be you.

Graduate Study at Oxford

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A perspective on masters’, DPhil (PhD) and other graduate courses from Graduate Admissions at the University of Oxford

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