Human, Social And Political Science @ King's, Cambridge in 2019

Interview format

Arts-Humanities Admissions Assessment (AHAA); 1x interview.

Interview content

Interview: Discussion of preliminary reading and various social, political and anthropological topics.

Best preparation

Read and learn a lot around various topics you are interested in.

Final thoughts

Read around topics you mention in your application; practice talking about your thought process aloud.

Remember this advice isn't official. There is no guarantee it will reflect your experience because university applications can change between years. Check the official Cambridge and Oxford websites for more accurate information on this year's application format and the required tests.

Also, someone else's experience may not reflect your own. Most interviews are more like conversations than tests and like, any conversation, they are quite interactive.

Interview Format

Test taken: Arts-Humanities Admissions Assessment (AHAA)
Number of interviews: 1
Time between interviews: NA
Length of interviews: 30-40 minutes, and an hour preliminary reading
Online interview: No

What happened in your interview? How did you feel?

I only had one interview and we covered lots of different political, social and anthropological topics. We started with the topic in my preliminary reading which was the essay I had written in my entrance exam, on sexual inequalities. After this we covered a few other topics - one was the decrease in religion across the world and the other was the impact of the 2008 crash. The interviewers obviously don’t expect you to be experts in the topics, just that you have an awareness of the world around you and can decide on an argument and argue it. Throughout the interview my opinions were challenged, and thinking and defending myself was a main part of the interview.

How did you prepare for your interviews?

I read lots and lots. I also ripped apart my personal statement and the essays I had given Cambridge as part of my application. Realistically all the interviewers can use is what you have given them, so I knew my stuff. Any topic I had mentioned in my personal statement, I read around, gaining different viewpoints and a better understanding.

I also just read other articles and podcasts that interested me. Interviewers want to see that you genuinely love your subject and so if you have topics you know loads about and show an interest in, then you can make the interview how you want it. For example, if you’re asked about sexism but have a specific interest in abortion laws, bring that up. I read lots and was able to bring in loads of this knowledge into my interview.

If you took a test, how did you prepare?

Practice papers for AHAAas well as similar reading type past papers to get an idea of how to do the comprehension. For the essay section I read loads of news articles so I was up to date on current issues and practiced writing lots of essays

What advice would you give to future applicants?

Keep a copy of everything you provide Cambridge with so that you can read around the topics you have highlighted. This is likely to come up in your interview as it’s the only thing that Cambridge has of you.

Also just read and listen to topics that interest you. Interviewers aren’t going to expect you to know everything, they want to see an interest for a subject and so if you can show this it doesn’t matter if you’re not sure what the right answer is.

Finally, explain your answers, and practice talking about what you’re thinking.