Admissions Guidance - UK
V.P., Cardiff Offer in Medicine
I think that the entire preparation experience has given me so much more knowledge and insight into university applications since my parents nor I have had experience in applying for university overseas. As I have been guided through the process by many experienced people I was much less worried and was able to better focus on the task at hand as well as my school work which was an added benefit. I think that the best part was polishing my personal statement and additional information for Cambridge because I was introduced to many intriguing subjects that was further developed during the interview practice sessions.
T.C., Nottingham Offer in Economics
It was overall an extremely helpful experience. I found the preparation for my personal statement particularly useful, as I was introduced to numerous new ideas and extra readings that extended my knowledge. I thoroughly enjoyed the interview preparations too, as tutors constantly challenged me with questions I had never thought about. It helped me understand how vital it is to structure my thinking in order for others to come across my approach as being logical and concise. TSA test preparations also encouraged me to face my weakness and reassured me that I could actually tackle the problem. The tutors are well-experienced and have inspired me to become more passionate towards Economics. Thank you Arch for all the personal and thoughtful advice, encouraging me to step out of my comfort zone to achieve my goals.
R.C., UCL Offer in Medicine
I think the entire experience was good, and gave me more confidence for my whole application process. The personal statement and interview sessions were particularly useful. It was good to have my personal statement checked off, and the interview sessions certainly prepared my mindset on how to answer questions.
N.C., Oxford Offer in Law
I would say the preparation lessons from ARCH were really helpful. I think they definitely gave me confidence that I would otherwise probably not have because I had at least a vague idea of what was ahead of me. The scenario-based questions were extremely helpful because that was the format that Lincoln was after.
I feel like the interview preparation was definitely what I thought was most valuable, more so than for the LNAT and extended project, and rightly so. Having said so, I need to give credit to the whole package as it was very holistic to the application.
I.G., UCL Offer in Architecture
I think the preparation motivated me to independently research about Architecture, so I could discuss with the tutors. The interview preparation also ensured that I was more relaxed and comfortable in the interview environment and helped me to think on my feet and make the most out of my pre-existing knowledge. The preparation not only improved my interviewing skills, but also enhanced the way I present myself, and my self-initiative for finding new information and reading around architecture. I also learnt how to create a portfolio that showcases your work.
F.T., Imperial College Offer in Medicine
I am very satisfied with ARCH’s support throughout the whole process. The personal statement tutoring helped immensely, and I am very pleased with the final product. I felt that the interview prep benefitted me most, as interview was one of my weakest areas to begin with. I now feel much more prepared for the upcoming interviews and am sure I will be able to do well. Thank you!
F.C., LSE Offer Holder in Law
I enjoyed the preparation progress as I become more familiar with my subject and the manner in which the interviews would be conducted. Given I seldom had the chance to discuss my subject in school, I valued the opportunity I had to talk about the law with my tutors. The Oxbridge backgrounds of my tutors also helped in terms of choosing the college and in knowing the background of my interviewers.
E.T., Durham offer holder in Law
Overall, the entire preparation was very useful. It not only prepared me for university interviews and aptitude test, but gave me a lot of invaluable skills. What I thought was the most useful was the interview preparation sessions as they taught me how I should analyze scenarios and structure my answers in a way that would be easy to follow. Overall, the entire preparation experience was very good and it could not have been better.
D.L., Cambridge offer holder in Human, Social and Political Sciences
The preparation has been very helpful. in general, the interview prep has been an amazing learning experience. Thank you!
A.L., University of Cambridge
Thank you so much for your help over the past few months! I could not have received a conditional offer from Cambridge without all your guidance and I am honestly so shocked that I received an offer at all because I never thought I was capable enough to reach this part of the process.
T. & Y. M. , Yale School of Management
My fiancé and I came to ARCH with high ambitions, but not a lot of potential for top MBA admissions. ARCH showed us how to advance our case through both short- and long-term planning and refined our school choices to maximize chances of dual admission for me and my fiancé. Today, we are heading to Yale School of Management together – a Yale couple!
Parent of S.C., Cornell University
My daughter got into her first choice program at her dream college and that is due, in large measure, to ARCH’s mentorship and skillful guidance. As a bonus, she had the opportunity of observing first-hand the culture of commitment and professionalism that the ARCH team has demonstrated throughout 2.5 years. I am one grateful parent!
S.L., Acceptance from Choate, Kent, Lawrenceville, St. Paul’s & Taft
ARCH helped me identify my strengths, interests and hobbies and encouraged me to develop them into solid extracurricular activities. ARCH provided a lot of guidance, especially helped me understand the interview mentality which encouraged me to self-reflect on my experiences, achievements and how I wanted to present myself.
J.L., Cambridge Judge Business School, Master of Finance offer holder
I know my profile was not half as competitive as it should be when I came to ARCH for help. ARCH highlighted my strengths and gave me suggestions to bolster my profile. The help with application essay was beyond expectation.
K.C., Offer from Cheltenham Ladies' College
I find ARCH extrmely helpful in terms of exam preparation and admissions to top UK boarding schools. I got offers from all the boarding schools I applied to. I have learnt so much from my tutors as they are very well-informed about the UK curriculum and are able to deliver the lessons in a very concise and structured manner.
J.C., Cambridge offer holder in Psychological and Biological Sciences
ARCH is simply fantastic. Not only did they help me with my personal statement, they also provided me with stimulating reading materials. Despite not having studied Psychology before, I have acquired a lot of relevant knowledge in a short span of four months. The preparations for the interview are helpful and effective. They enhanced my ability to think and react on the spot. The practices, in conjunction with the tutor’s valuable feedback, allow me to be more confident during the interview.
J.C., Cambridge offer holder in Economics
I have seen many personal statements of the others, including my schoolmates, my summer course friends etc. Most of them do not reach ARCH standard. ARCH Tutor suggests a lot of books and reading materials and her ideas for personal statement are brilliant indeed. Her assistance is definitely helpful and is sharply focused. I felt that the Cambridge interviewers deeply appreciated my personal statement. I was able to use ideas covered in preparation in my interview! The tutor’s help has positive externalities and has definitely pushed my Economics from a middle 7 to a high 7 in IB! Thank you so much!!!
C.W., Cambridge offer holder in Natural Sciences with Scholarship; Cornell University offer holder
It’s no exaggeration to say that I’m forever indebted to Arch. They introduced me to the summer programme at Pembroke, Oxford, which led me to seriously consider courses in the Natural Sciences at an undergraduate level. Later on, their Oxbridge interview prep helped me develop critical and lateral thinking skills, while improving my subject knowledge. Their guidance to US schools was also top-notch; they provided fantastic insights into the “personalities” of different institutes, which allowed me to find the right tone for my essays. Thank you Arch; it’s been an amazing two years with you guys!
Hanson, Middlesex School offer holder
One year ago, I joined ARCH and it turned out to be one of the best decisions I have ever made in the last 13 years of my life…They really helped me make use of my full potential. Through consultation, I am able to plan, set goals and prepare for my dream to study in the US in the future. Concerning application process, my encouraging counselor has helped me throughout my application process to US boarding schools and gave me a lot of valuable guidance. Together we set many goals and this has pushed me to work harder, as it made me realize my full potential and has motivated me to focus on doing my best in my applications. From my experience, joining ARCH has surely helped prepared me in different ways for my future school and life transitions.
T.C., Oxford offer holder in Law
Merton said YES!!! :D Thank you so much for making my dream come true; I wouldn't have achieved it without you all. Thank you with all my heart! OJ was very helpful and gave me a lot of insight into the issues I wanted to include in my personal statement; and assisted greatly in enhancing my knowledge. My consultants gave me advice on how to balance my university choices, then how to pick a college in Oxford. The mock interviews were quite similar to the actual interview I had in Oxford, involving critical and lateral thinking. The tutors are very stimulating, super committed, helpful and encouraging. I am very grateful for all the consultants that helped me through the process regardless of the outcome.
Helena, University of San Francisco offer holder
Good news - USF has offered me Honours admission and has automatically granted me a merit award scholarship (amount still has to be confirmed)! Thank you for everything you have done which has contributed so much in getting this great result!! If it were not for your assistance I think I would just end up in community colleges. And I could never imagine getting a scholarship! I just don't know how to thank you enough.
S.C., Cambridge offer holder in Architecture
Your team is really the best! The tutors at ARCH gave me the confidence to believe in my ideas and to be proud of my unique experiences despite my relatively weaker grades. Previously, I was presented the idea that the university application was entirely grade driven for the UK. Arch had a completely different approach. They valued me as individual and taught me how to highlight my personal qualities and passion in my essays - I am proud of my personal statement because it truly reflects my passion and personality. During the interview preparation stage, I improved so much. ARCH taught me how to organise my thoughts, prepared me for all possible scenarios and most importantly they were so encouraging and made me feel calm and confident for my interview. Couldn't have done it without the Arch team!! Thank you so so much for all your support, I really wouldn't have been able to endure this uni process without your help and support. Sarah, you gave me so much confidence and encouragement, you really have no idea. Jen, Tilly, your UCAS help with all the brainstorming, turning my ENTIRE story around, and interview prep...the change was unthinkable.
Parent of Ilya, Northfield Mount Hermon School offer holder
Last October we had doubts as to whether our daughter would get into any school. After ARCH's thorough preparation, she was admitted to eight out of thirteen schools -- who would have believed it! There is no way she'd have been able to achieve as much as she did without the partnership of Jennifer Yu and Marybeth Hodson. We are thrilled with the outcome, it has been a real case of value for the money spent, and would gladly recommend ARCH's services to anyone.
J.L., LSE unconditional offer from Government & Politics with Sir Edward Youde Scholarship
Arch has not simply assisted me in developing a comprehensive academic profile: they have improved me as a person, and brought me unparalleled work opportunities. Their support went far beyond practical advice – it was really their constant encouragement and guidance that kept me going throughout this stressful process! Through referrals from Arch’s excellent consultants, I became an election advisor to a top Hong Kong politician, a unique edge over other Politics applicants across the UK. With intensive discussions and editing, we also produced a concise personal statement reflective of my interests. For my dream school LSE, Arch consultants even delivered a personalized recommendation, which undoubtedly contributed to my offer with a full scholarship. Arch is professional, knowledgeable and most of all, caring – A big, warm, Thank You.
Parent of Gordon, Northfield Mount Hermon School offer holder
Applying to study abroad in the United States is a lengthy and complicated process. Thanks to ARCH, my son Gordon’s application was completed smoothly and efficiently. During Jennifer Yu’s first encounter with Gordon, she pointed out his shortcomings and the difficulties he might encounter throughout the application process. Over the period, Jennifer has provided Gordon valuable advice and clear guidance on tackling the SSAT exams, applying for boarding schools, acing the interviews and encouraged him to participate in extra-curricular activities. Jennifer’s attentive coaching has exerted positive influence over Gordon which we cannot appreciate more.
Tinny, Oxford offer holder in Law
I have always aspired to study law. I find it very interesting and I want to study the relations between law and society. Prior to all this I joined the Pembroke Summer program, which really confirmed my interest in law, so when I learned that ARCH is happy to offer help on Oxbridge admissions, I just took a chance.
ARCH helped me with my personal statement. They helped me to organize my ideas and they encouraged me to read around the subject really widely before I wrote anything. So I felt like it was a much more comprehensive personal statement; it was also very structured. Besides, they also helped with college choices, and introduced me to different Oxford colleges so I could make a very informed decision on what college I actually wanted to go to. After submitting my UCAS form, they also helped with my LNAT prep – there were a lot of MCs as well as an essay section. We did a lot of mock exams and after each mock, the tutor would explain to me what I did wrong and give me advice and guidance on how I could improve my writing or how I could think more logically and organize my arguments. As for interview prep, we tried to expand on my personal statement and again we read around the subject even more widely. The tutors also encouraged me to keep up with current issues and legal news, and that also proved to be very helpful in my actual interview. Apart from normal talking and exchanging ideas, we had several mock interviews and that really gave me a taste of what Oxbridge interviews would be like so I was a lot less nervous at my actual interview.
Colman, Cambridge offer holder in Maths
I was thinking about Mathematics or Medicine, and my consultant solved this dilemma for me by simply analysing my portfolio and figuring out where my strengths lay. She gave me a really good opinion on which subject to choose, and finally I chose Mathematics. I can’t really write at all, and my personal statement was a pain. Thanks to ARCH for helping me and guiding me through the structure and what content I should put in. The interview questions they designed for me in the interview exercise were pretty useful because they were actually quite similar to the style [in which] Cambridge interviewed me, which gave me preparation before having an actual interview. How to differentiate yourself – that’s what ARCH helped me to do, and trying to make myself stand out more.
Joshua, Cambridge offer holder in Economics
ARCH provided dual-academic consultants for me, one looked at my profile at a microscopic scale, while the other gave me subject-specific academic guidance. ARCH aligned an academic consultant who studies Economics in Cambridge for me, which was exactly my [goal]. The consultants gave me a lot of help in my personal statement. I got 5 conditional offers from the 5 universities I applied to via UCAS. ARCH also helped me build up my confidence and imparted a lot of necessary academic knowledge that has proven to be very useful in my interview. Before this I didn’t think I was capable of getting into these competitive universities. ARCH helped me achieve my goal.
Wharton, Oxford Bio-chem and Yale offers holder
I choose ARCH because they gave me the right preparation for both the UK and US application. Each counselling session is tailor made and suited to your own needs.
For Oxbridge, the question I had in mind was “what could interviews be like” and that was the biggest question. How ARCH helped me was that they provided me with different question types that could possibly appear in the interview, and guided through the academic reading that I should go through to prepare for this interview.
Mrs Loo, mother of E.L., Westminster School offer holder
ARCH inputs are extremely useful and we appreciate that you have had time for our last minute brush up in interview. Both my husband and I could tell that our son was finally confronted with someone who excels his intelligence in philosophy or religious knowledge. We are very pleased with the result and would definitely refer any potential students to ARCH in the future.
N.C., HKU and CU offers holder in Medicine
ARCH offered tremendous help in preparing me for interviews by the Medical Faculty of both the University of Hong Kong and the Chinese University of Hong Kong in 2011. Not only did ARCH provide me with a broad spectrum of medical knowledge apt for a prospective medical student, they also offered me ample inspiration and a holistic outlook into the medical career. Throughout the sessions I had with ARCH , the medic tutor was patient, understanding and encouraging. It was without a doubt that I had acquired a lot of solid advice from her which had stood me in good stead for the interviews. Thank you very much ARCH and Dr Caryn!!
N.B., Cambridge offer holder in Engineering
I would like to take this opportunity to thank you very much for all the kind effort you have put into helping me with my Cambridge application!! I would not have achieved an offer without your inputs and Skype interview preparation sessions, often at a moment's notice.
L.C., Cambridge offer holder in Economics
ARCH mock interview questions were challenging but provided very good practice for tackling problems I was unfamiliar with. Skills and concepts they taught were also very useful. This helped a lot with applying abstract concepts to real-life situations and also gave useful information on the current economic climate. Thank you very much for all your help!!!!
J.C., Cambridge offer holder in Law
I’d like to say a big thank you to Arch for all the time and effort they put into my application process! My dream of getting an offer from Cambridge wouldn't have come true without the help from arch. Thank you so much for helping me in coming up with a personal statement – the end product was both insightful and academic. Also, thanks for arranging my interview lessons with the excellent tutors; who pushed me to think outside the box, and prepared me well for the challenging interviews. They were extremely friendly and helpful and never failed to answer my questions beyond the lessons. Also, she has given me really good advice on how to tackle a problem question which I found very useful during my law test. It has been great working with ARCH! The training for the Cambridge law test, in particular, was very useful because the tutors gave me very good advice on how to tackle it, which helped a lot in the actual test as I found it very manageable. Thank you once again for all the efforts and time ARCH has put into my application!
R.V., Medicine applicant
I think I expected the best possible all-round preparation by ARCH, and needless to say, I got exactly (if not more) than what I expected. I think the preparation—from the UKCAT all the way to the interviews is splendid and indeed most thought-provoking and allows me to develop a working knowledge of what to do in an interview or the next time I write a Personal Statement. ARCH not only delivers, it genuinely cares about its students, which is a real pleasure as it allows an exchange of ideas between tutor and tutee. I believe it is easy to build up a good working relationship with the friendly and receptive tutors and staff, which all the more adds to the experience and accentuates the growth one can achieve as a part of ARCH.
I didn't feel directed or made to do something, but educated.
M.L., LSE offer holder in Management
My counselor guided me through every step of my personal statement, from brainstorming ideas for my first draft to completing it. She has also given me recommendation on reading list to line in with my personal statement. She even provided me with suggestions on synonyms to avoid a word being used twice in a paragraph!
I received offers from all universities! Thank you for the great guidance in the past!
Leo, University of California, Berkeley / Johns Hopkins / Carnegie Mellon University offers holder
2 years ago in the summer, I got in touch with my teachers and I told her I wanted to apply to the States but I don’t have much clue because I was studying in the UK. My teachers recommended me to ARCH.
Firstly, in sixth form I was choosing between doing the A-levels or the IB, which are two different sixth form courses. ARCH recommended me to do A-levels over the IB, which really helped me later on to have a more balanced lifestyle – doing the IB would have really stressed me out a lot, I realize that.
ARCH gave me a lot of advice on choosing different curricula and which would suit me the best, and that really helped me later on to manage my time and balance my lifestyle. I’m really sporty and when applying to the States, they gave me a lot of advice on how I can contact the coaches and go on trial for soccer there, and that really helped.
ARCH helped me by having a team of expert staff who specialized in different SAT areas such as the critical reading and writing – they really helped me to increase my scores in the final SAT. More importantly, in the essay writing, they have a team of experts who helped me to strategize and gave me advice and helped me to structure my essays for the US universities.
In writing the essays for the US universities, ARCH helped me reflect on myself and at the end I [understood] myself much better compared to before all the advice about what my strengths are. I also learnt to emphasize on my strengths.
I would definitely recommend ARCH to people like me two years ago: people who really wanted to do well but did not have much of a clue how to do so. I think ARCH is the best guidance out there to help people who want to achieve their goals.
T.T., Oxford offer holder in Mathematics with Jardine's Scholarship
ARCH has really helped me a lot in getting into Oxford to study Mathematics. I was one of the students with the least time of preparation. While many started early with at least half a year to prepare, I reached Arch just a few weeks before the deadline of the UCAS submission of Oxbridge.
Arch gave me wonderful advice regarding the college choice and more importantly, my personal statement. With their help, I became very clear as to how I present my academic interest and ability in my personal statement. Even though I regard myself as a strong candidate with good portfolio, without Arch guidance on personal statement I would never be able to get into Oxford. Their help was simply crucial to the ultimate success.
The interview sessions were very enriching and challenging and kept myself at ease at presenting my mathematical thoughts. Sam, my tutor, is an absolutely knowledgeable person who gives me strong training in my integration and analysis.
Finally, Jennifer Ma is such a nice person who is always willing to help me and provide me guidance on how to attempt different scholarships. Getting the Jardine Scholarship in the end is definitely one of the most surrealistic moments of my life!
J.L., Cambridge offer holder in Veterinary Science
The preparation offered by the tutor helped a lot, because the questions she asked me in the mock interviews were really similar to the real one. Specifically, she asked me to read up on [topic] and it did come up. I was put under a situation where I had to think on my feet, and although it was through Skype, I was still slightly nervous so it’s good practice. The feedback she provided was really informative, as there are things I didn’t notice formerly which also helped me improve on my speaking and thinking skills. It was an excellent experience.
R.H., Bristol offer holder in Economics
My consultant has been very helpful and gives me lots of advice in the selection of universities for my UCAS application. She has also been a great help with the application of universities in Hong Kong.The Discipline Specific Tutor helped me form the shape of my personal statement by going through my CV and spoke to me in depth. Through the detailed discussions, she helped me realize what can be put into the personal statement but also how I can portray my academic studies, learning experience and interest in a coherent manner and how they link to the subject I apply for at universities. The tutor coached me to further develop idea and areas which are beyond the scope of the AS studies. This did not only enrich my knowledge but also enabled me to enrich the content of my personal statement.I am most grateful for the guidance on my personal statement and very pleased with my final draft.The interview preparation was very good and useful and it makes me thing what questions may be put forward to me and how I should organize myself in the reply. What help me most what I learnt on how I should structure and phrase my thoughts.
Mrs Chong, Parent of an applicant for Medicine and Bio-medical Sciences
As a parent of a graduate from an International School in Hong Kong, my daughter and I consulted Jennifer Ma, ARCH Education for applying to universities in the UK. Jennifer possesses excellent skills and knowledge of advising and helping students in gaining university acceptance. She used a systematic approach in understanding my daughter's capabilities and needs before planning and following up targeted improvements (e.g. both academic and extra-curricular, interviewing skills etc). I was very impressed with the way Jennifer guided us, from analyzing the situation to providing expert advice and support throughout the university application and selection processes. As a consultant, Jennifer maintains extremely high standards in her work. She is resourceful, efficient and organized in accomplishing results.
I would recommend ARCH Education to other students without hesitation. Jennifer's strong background is unique and will benefit students in pursuit of further education.
S.W., Cambridge offer holder in Law
Sam has made critically significant contribution to my application process - by helping with the edits of several essays, scheduling an array of sessions, and monitoring my progress regularly. Whenever I meet difficulties during the application process, he has always been helpful to give assistance and guidance, such as dealing with the administration and preparation on tests. His immediate response to my queries impressed me much, which contributed much to my progress.
The entire preparation experience was immensely comprehensive and useful, which equipped me with a variety of skills. With the comments and edits of the tutor, I came up with a decent and strong personal statement. The aptitude test preparation provided me a great deal of chance to practice and gain hands-on experience on the writing part. What impressed me most was the interview preparation – the tutors were professional and nice. Both the general and academic interview preparation bolstered my logical thinking, organization skills and the reactions to the challenging questions. I felt more confident and comfortable during the actual interview, as the mock practice contributed much to the process.
Z.Z., University of Southern California offer holder
After lots of deliberation, I finally chose USC! Thank you both so much for helping me perfect my applications to numerous schools over the past few months. It was stressful at times but thank you for motivating me and pushing me to get everything done. I'm extremely thankful for your encouragement and support and I definitely would not have gotten in to as many schools as I did without your help.
Once again, thank you so much!
M.S., Oxford offer holder in Law
My counselor was very helpful, especially in facilitating communication between my tutor and I, as well as monitoring my progress throughout different sessions. She was also eager to answer any questions I had during the preparation process which was most useful.
My discipline specific tutor exposed me to open-ended, passage-based and scenario questions.I was challenged during the mock interviews, particularly when my tutor asked spontaneous follow-up questions that countered my viewpoint or exposed philosophical ideas underlying the debate. My tutor would give me feedback immediately after each exercise and asked me to improve on specific skills in the next exercise so that it was clear to me what I should improve on. I was given several case study exercises and extra notes which related to what I wrote in the personal statement. It was very helpful as part of the debate was touched on in my actual interviews and the case study exercises were very similar to the actual format of the interviews. I felt that my tutor was professional and very eager to help with regards to any questions I had during the admissions process, which made the preparation process worthwhile.
K.G., Offers from 9 universities, including KCL for Business Management; and U of Toronto
My counselor helped me with an excellent and perfect idea for my personal statement and we worked together for the structures and content of the essay. She also provided suggestions for my university choices. ARCH Consultants have a good understanding of my future goals and career. They even read my textbook from summer school course to get a general knowledge of my summer course content! For Interview Preparation, my tutor asked me several questions both self-related and society-related. These questions seemed to be easy to answer, however, in order to give a good answer I realised that I should answer it from different prospective with the viewpoints that are different from others. This is what makes me to be the applicant that stands out.
Stephen, University of Michigan offer holder
[My counselors] helped me prepare for my US university application – selecting schools, reviewing essays and preparing for interviews. They guided me on initiating a project in my IB department, setting SAT and IB target scores. They provided detailed suggestions on how to improve my essay and gave insights on universities that I could never find from books and websites…Overall, my counselors’ in-depth analysis of different schools, understanding of the culture and tradition and background of schools, and insightful comments on how to best portray my personal qualities through my essays have enhanced my application.
K.T., Cambridge offer holder in Architecture
The preparation experience was thoroughly helpful and really helped to clarify my interests in architecture. I found both the personal statement and interview preparation sessions very enlightening as I learned a great deal throughout, especially through discussion and reading.
Parent of Student, Washington University (St. Louis) offer holder
Many thanks to the ARCH team for taking Ivan through his education journey. Not only he enjoyed his time in ARCH, he was also inspired by the effort and dedication offered by the team!
S.B., Cambridge offer holder in Natural Sciences
5 out of 5!!
ARCH helped me with restructuring and improving my personal statement to an acceptable Cambridge standard. My counselor regrouped my relevant activities and asked thought-provoking questions to help me add personal opinions. She suggested language should be made much more compact. I’m pleased with my final draft.
ARCH discipline specific tutor practiced Cambridge interview questions with me. The mock interviews stretched my thinking – Many of them required proposition of ideas that require original, logical thinking instead of fishing knowledge from the AS/A2 syllabus.
As there are many rumours regarding Oxbridge interviews, the experience was helpful with knowing what type of questions to expect and the fact that it is okay to get impossible questions wrong as long as the thinking process is shown.
A.K., Law applicant
Apart from the help for my personal statement, my counsellor also followed me through with my application in my school. She also gave me advice as to which university I would choose. She was able to see straight away the connections in my past experiences that I had overlooked before. The entire preparation was great. It was satisfying to see my final draft of the personal statement. It was obviously better than what I had written in first place.
L.H.L., Cambridge offer holder in Law
I am very pleased with the SAQ draft Jen edited, which succinctly included things I did not have room to put into my UCAS PS as well as why coming from HK, studying law is particular. I think the entire experience really prepared me well for the rigorous admissions process. And it got me an offer from Trinity Hall, what more can I ask for!
P.Z., accepted by Kent School
[The] whole process was much tougher than what I had expected. I just want to show my deepest gratitude for all the help you’ve given us…I have learnt something valuable [and] have a clearer picture of myself, which I think will be critical to my future development. Last of all, thanks again for everything you’ve done for us, I truly appreciate it!
M.R., Durham offer holder in Geography
ARCH made it clear what I needed to do in order to give myself the best chance. No matter what the outcome of my application is, I would recommend using Arch to anyone thinking of applying to Oxbridge. ARCH is not for the faint hearted but [they] definitely deliver results!
I definitely feel like the preparation helped me immensely – I literally wrote a completely new personal statement and felt more confident than I otherwise would have done going into the interview. I feel like I actually gained a much higher level understanding of geography which will aid me wherever I end up studying.
J.H., UCL offer holder in Anthropology
My initial personal statement showed little insight to the subject I am applying. It was merely a summary of my qualifications and abilities. It could be applicable to any subjects. After the sessions, I felt that my personal statement had improved tremendously. It illustrates not only some factual qualifications and experiences of myself, but also my own insight to social anthropology. I think my consultants have successfully presented the best side of myself in my personal statement. As a second language speaker, the English language has always been a barrier to me because it hinders me from communicating effectively. Without my consultants’ close editing, I do not think my expression in my PS would be as effective. I feel that now my personal statement is more relevant to my subject choice and it contains my own voice in it, which I believe sets me apart from others.
K.W., Cambridge offer holder in Law
I found the overall preparation spectacularly useful and effective. I am thrilled to receive an offer from Cambridge and would like to express my gratitude once again. There were a few areas that I found particularly helpful.
Personal Statement Preparation - I think the final mark up by Jennifer really did lift the quality of my personal statement. The personal statement is also trimmed down into the words limit as required without cutting down anything that is important. (This also applies to the SAQ). In addition, the initial planning stage also helped me to brainstorm things that I could mention in the personal statement.
Interview Preparation - Very useful in general. Tutors are quite experienced and provided me with many opportunities to practice my interview skills.
D.Y., The Taft School offer holder
I can’t thank you enough for what you have done for me throughout the past three years. Your support has been greatly appreciated throughout the application process. I must admit the process was difficult and, without your assistance, I would not have made it this far!
K.Y., Oxford offer holder in Biochemistry
ARCH’s discipline specific tutor practiced biochemistry questions with me in preparation for my Oxford interview. In mock interview scenarios, I was asked a range of biology and chemistry questions. I genuinely felt like I was stretched by the challenging questions, and I benefitted from practicing how to think aloud as I answered them, and also learnt useful strategies for approaching technical and scenario-based questions. The tutor even taught me some topics which I hadn’t covered at school yet, which allowed me to further extend my knowledge!
A.C., UCL offer holder in Psychology
I found the entire preparation experience very informative and rewarding. The preparation helped me in two ways. Firstly, the suggested reading helped me to further consolidate my understanding about the subject of psychology. Secondly, the whole preparation enabled me to be both relaxed and confident in the interview.
J.T., Cambridge offer holder in Economics
ARCH provided all-rounded guidance in every element of the application process. Both my academic and presentation ability was greatly enhanced through tailor-made sessions, and the intensiveness and effectiveness of all work were impressive. The tutors, Oxbridge alumni or students, truly understood my needs and shared with me their invaluable experiences. All these made my application a really fruitful process with a successful outcome. I am so grateful that ARCH encouraged me to start this journey and offered the most appropriate support.
Parent of J.C., New York University offer holder
Thank you guys, my husband is very pleased and I’m over excited that my son got into his first choice school NYU. Thank you so much for working with his essays. That was one of main factors that got him in, and all the strategic advices.
J.Y., Cambridge offer holder in Land Economy
My discipline specific tutor prepared me for the interview stage of my application to Cambridge. This experience was valuable as it helped me get used to thinking out loud quickly and in front of a stranger. I was given a variety of questions as part of the practice, some general and some subject specific.
J.F., UCL offer holder in Psychology
My counselor was very helpful in terms of keeping me on track with everything and giving me advice. My discipline specific tutor suggested that I could read a bit more around the subject that I’m interested in and she suggested a specific book, which was very enjoyable. For my Personal Statement, she encouraged me to leave some ‘hooks’ that the interviewers could ask about in the interviews. For interview preparation I was given mostly [certain type of] questions because I was not very confident with those. A lot of the questions required me to think further and stretched my abilities. A lot of technical questions were also asked. To begin with, I often found myself contradicting myself when answering challenging questions, which required me to stop and reorganize my thoughts. At first I found myself waffling and repeating my points a lot, but towards the end I felt more comfortable when exposed to unfamiliar questions.
H.L., Cambridge offer holder in Law
The Oxbridge Insiders was very useful. I tried to find more practices on scenario based questions and comprehension questions online but couldn’t find any. The practices provided by the tutors thus help me prepare for the interview better and I am more familiar with the question style.
M.N., Brown University offer holder
Having applied to US, UK and HK universities, I found ARCH to be a great help in preparing for all these competitive yet very different university admission processes. They have a strong team of tutors who were experienced and supportive, identifying schools that fitted my character and interests. By the end of the process, I have received offers from top schools in all of these locations. Having little to no experience with the American education system, the tutors gave me much valuable advice for the SATs and application writing skills. I am delighted to be looking back at the wonderful work of these devoted admission counsellors while enjoying my freshman year at Brown!
V.M., Cambridge offer holder in Economics
I am very pleased with the final draft of my personal statement. ARCH tutor provided an introduction to theories featured at the undergraduate level, which I then further researched on. She also offered alternative angles for issues I wrote about in my personal statement. She often checked whether I understood the relevant concepts I wrote about, and asked me to summarise the idea and offer examples.
The preparation experience is very useful because my school offers very limited support on interview. In particular, I enjoyed the wide-ranging types of questions that my tutor prepared for me, and how ARCH tutor offered theories/concepts for me to look into, which further enhanced the quality of my answers in general.
M.S., Economics applicant
The preparation experience was excellent and this really helped a lot. In particular, my discipline specific tutor provided me with many past questions which really helped me to prepare for my interview! Everything is great… I would definitely recommend ARCH to my friends!
C.C., Cambridge offer holder in Law
I think the preparation helped in my personal statement and interview prep most as it directed me in a clearer direction as to how to ap-proach legal questions and to be more focused legally on issues. It also helped me develop my interest fur-ther as through engaging in legal conversations and thinking more about legal topics, it made me feel more engaged with the subject and more ready for university in the long term.
C.Z., Cornell University
Thank you for your guidance and support - whether it is offering strategies on applying to schools, giving me insights into each school, boosting my profile with ECAs, or keeping track of my application. I cannot feel more comfortable working with any other people than with ARCH!
S.C., LSE offer holder in International Relations & Cornell University offer in Hotel Management
The ARCH consultants helped me to enhance my Personal Statement and profile greatly. As a candidate, I am certain that I was presented in the best light possible with the help of my tutors. My application before and after their counseling, l would not even have been comparable. I am particular grateful for their help with my Personal Statement - through providing me with background reading and assigning me excellent tutors. I was exposed to the topic of International Relations like I had never been before.
N.L. , Offers from 5 universities (including RVC), Veterinary Science
I felt that the Interview Preparation was necessary, provided that I did not have any previous experience beforehand. The lessons prepared me mentally on what I should expect from the interview and I believe that I wouldn’t have done so well without it. The preparation helped me broaden my thinking to be well-equipped before the actual interview.
C.G., Oxford offer holder in Law
In all the preparation experience was extremely helpful - I am certain that it would have gone a lot worse if I hadn’t been helped by Emma and Jennifer.
The two most impactful parts were probably the Personal statement preparation with Emma and Dr Slinn, and the mock interview with Jennifer. Emma helped me add a lot of external reading to the personal statement, gave it greater cohesiveness than I could ever hope to achieve and helped me tweak the language to a tone more suitable for a personal statement. Dr Slinn was also a great help in providing me with insight as to what the admission tutors would be looking for, and further tweaking the terminology.
The mock interview session with Jennifer was particularly helpful because it provided me with much more concrete feedback that I could actually use. Jennifer was able to provide tips as to how I could actually deal with my flaws, and taught me a more regimented thought process to come up with a well thought out and structured response on the fly.
J.N., Cambridge offer holder in Law
I'm extremely pleased to tell you that I have been offered a place at Christ's! I'm immensely grateful for the guidance and invaluable feedback both you and Jennifer have given me over the course of this application cycle.
J.C., LSE offer holder in Law
The whole preparation process was a very valuable experience. It helped me grow as a student and enhanced my plain and incomprehensive understanding of the law.
Techniques I’ve learnt were very useful not only for the actual interview but also in my academic studies. The whole process encouraged me to read widely and pay attention to current affairs. Overall, the mock interviews were most useful in helping me gain confidence and give smart and intellectual answers.
Doing mock interviews with my tutor helped me to think laterally and construct my answers more succinctly. A lot of emphasis was put in learning to go “step by step” when going through a legislation. I also learned to look carefully at legal documents and analyse those documents in the most concise and personal way possible. I learned how to compare scenarios. Many skills and techniques were learned and I felt very confident through my tutor’s guidance.
I really enjoyed the experience and I think it was really helpful in all areas of my studies.
C.Y., Durham offer holder in Law
My counselor helped me a lot in the whole process, which I appreciate it so much. She responded promptly when I needed help and gave useful advice for me. My discipline specific tutor did a great job in helping me in my personal statement. She gave lots of insights for me for the entire picture of the statement. For the LNAT my skills in time-management enhanced a lot after the mock examinations I had some heated debates with my tutor which served as examples for me for the LNAT essay. Besides, I learnt a lot about the way of thinking. For both personal statement and LNAT preparation, ARCH helped me a lot that enables me to perform my very best in the UCAS application. I am wholeheartedly feeling blessed to seek help from ARCH.
C.W., Cambridge offer holder in Classics
The preparation was definitely helpful and made me more confident about approaching the interview, which to me was always the scariest part! Although the outcome may not be what I had hoped, the preparation made me feel more prepared, and hence allowed me to enjoy the interviews a lot. Thank you Arch for the ongoing guidance over the past year to keep me on track!
C.L., Cambridge offer holder in History
Arch definitely pushed me, even if I hadn’t gotten an offer from my first choice I definitely feel like I have come out of the experience with a different approach to my subject. The tutors challenged me to think really outside of the box and to make myself really self-aware of what I was saying and how I could improve myself. The experience was professional, and I had plenty of contact time with tutors and my assigned counselor who kept me updated and made sure I was on track and so I felt very sure about all the steps I was taking. Thank you to Arch for all the help and especially thank you to Jonathan for all the intellectual discussion and general advice- it was genuinely a really fulfilling experience.
T.C., LSE offer holder in Law
Ultimately, I was incredibly satisfied with the entire preparation experience as I found myself in a much more confident position when submitting my university applications as well as entering the interview. In particular, I was really grateful with the help on my personal statement and my interview sessions. Before consulting with my tutors, I had no idea what to expect at my Oxford interview and how I should respond to each question. Therefore, having been through a large number of mock sessions, I really felt quite calm and confident in my actual interviews.
B.C., Cambridge Law applicant
I was very impressed with both my tutors. I felt that the preparation was much more helpful than I could have imagined. I learnt a lot in every single lesson. Even outside of Cambridge Prep, the lessons went as far as teaching me a whole new way to think – more structured and quicker thinking was one of the key things I took away from the sessions.
C.T., Cambridge offer holder in Economics
The overall preparation experience was really helpful; I particularly enjoyed learning the more advanced economic theories when given open ended questions. Another part that was extremely useful was my session with Jennifer Ma - I think that going through the fundamental questions is really really important and also her advice on considering the economic, political and social aspects when answering a question was super useful.
F.Y., Cambridge Law & University of Pennsylvania acceptance
The excellent comments and thorough guidance I obtained made the application process much less daunting. I would definitely not have been able to obtain an offer from my dream college without ARCH's help!
A.I., HKU Fast Track offer holder in Medicine
For my Personal Statement preparation, the consultant told me to brainstorm a list of achievements and ECAs which I could put in my personal statement. Extra reading was suggested. Eg. Books from Oxbridge reading list and on medicinal chemistry (COX receptors). The consultant introduced more interesting sentence structures and information into my personal statement. I am very pleased with the final draft. I think it is one of the main reasons why I got interviews at my chosen universities.
A.C., Durham offer holder in Psychology
I naturally felt very nervous and stretched about the interviews and interview preparations, but I think that the mock interviews allowed me to practice and pulled me out of my comfort zone. This helped a lot with improving my confidence when answering questions.
R.M., Cambridge offer holder in Medicine
I just heard from Cambridge! I can’t believe it but I received an offer! My counsellor guided me throughout the whole admissions process and I’d like to express my sincere thanks – he really gave me a lot of support and confidence! I’m absolutely delighted.
Dominic, MMBS Programme at University of Hong Kong offer holder
I would like to express my heartfelt thanks on your effort on helping me with both the personal statement preparation, and as well as the interview preparation. I was successfully admitted to the MBBS programme at the university of Hong Kong and just started learning in the programme. I am enjoying my university study at the university and I promise that I will put my best effort in completing the programme.
E.Y., UCL offer holder in Psychology
The entire experience has been wonderful, unforgettable and perhaps life-changing. It taught me to learn more about what I am passionate about and it helped me identify my goal, learning a lot from students who are now studying in Oxbridge. Four months before, I had never imagined discussing with students from Oxbridge, let alone professors from Cambridge during the interview. This experience certainly opened my eyes. Before the interview, I only thought about why I wanted to study psychology, but now I will think “If I can get into the field, how can I contribute to the field?” The interview preparation part was perfect. I am sure this preparation experience will be beneficial for my other interviews in the future and my studies.
Parent of Sophie, Cornell University and Offer from London School of Economics
I engaged ARCH for its US consulting services in Year 11 (Grade 10) for my daughter who is studying at a local international school. The global team with counselors based in the US gave insightful college-specific advice, always keeping an international perspective. There was ongoing consultation with the ARCH team throughout, including regular routine updates and ad hoc enquiries. Response time is fast and never beyond a day.
At the end of Year 12 (Grade 11), I engaged ARCH to provide UK college consultancy. The holistic and interactive nature of ARCH’s cross-border advice ensured the best possible college outcome for my daughter; it also proved to be time and effort-efficient. My daughter received the highest quality advice from both consultants (US and UK) in their respective countries of specialisation.
ARCH’s consulting advice was specially invaluable in Year 13 (Grade 12): choice of teachers for recommendation and the drafting of self-profile to supplement teachers’ understanding, discussions regarding the merits of having other recommendations. The important task of brainstorming and editing the numerous personal statements and supplements was conducted with skill and sensitivity, a timeline was set well in advance and deadlines were met with prompting and reminders.
The college application process is grueling for the student and the parents. I have entrusted the advisory role to a team that is far more patient and knowledgeable than I can ever hope to be. My daughter got into her first choice program at her dream college and that is due, in large measure, to ARCH’s mentorship and skilful guidance. As a bonus, she has the opportunity of observing first-hand the culture of commitment and professionalism that the ARCH team has demonstrated throughout the 2.5 years. I am one grateful parent!
V.C., Oxford offer holder in Natural Science
The entire preparation experience was excellent, particularly the subject-specific interview preparation. The sessions helped me in understanding the format of the real interview so as to enhance my confidence.
J.T., University of California, Berkeley offer holder
I just wanted to say THANK YOU SO MUCH for your help for the past year. I wouldn't know where I would be now without your help.
Mother of C.M., UK applicant
Thank you for seeing Clarence, truly appreciate your timely assistance and in giving him the relevant guidance when it's most needed. As always, I'm so impressed with your creativity, ideas and knowledge base on these matters. Thank you once again.
C.M., Columbia Law School
Thank you so much for all the support and help you have given me throughout this roller coaster of an experience. I can safely say that I would not have gotten to this stage without you guys. Thanks so much again for helping me realize this dream!
D.C., Oxford offer holder in Engineering
The ARCH tutors helped me to realize that there are so many different paths which you could take to solve these sorts of questions. During interview prep sessions, I found the questions very hard at times but really I think this is the best type of preparation. I think what the tutors are looking for in the real interview is how you approach tricky problems. It is also not about how well you can solve it by yourself but how well can you solve it by latching onto the hints the tutors keep providing you as you do the problem. ARCH certainly did help – I got in!
C.C., Cambridge offer holder in Engineering
The preparation experience was amazing.
From making my subject choice, choosing college, to writing my Personal Statement and research essay, I got a lot of advice from ARCH. I found the interview prep particularly useful (because I am really bad at talking). I was exposed to questions on all areas of engineering which definitely expanded my mind, developed my out of the box thinking skills and the ability to relate the unrelated. The general interview prep prepared me so well for the real one as my interview was 'so general’ and I was able impress my interviewer.
It's still so unbelievable that I got an offer, I was so clueless about everything back in June and I’m so lucky to have ARCH’s help, and especially on the interview prep! I don't think I could even speak normally in front of my interviewers if Jennifer hadn't prepared me for that. I was mostly asked about topics that you prepped with me and it made me feel so confident selling myself. I had never in my life enjoyed an interview this much!
C.F., LSE offer holder in Law
I enjoyed the whole preparation experience and I greatly appreciate the support from ARCH!
I am pleased with my final Personal Statement draft because it truly reflects my passion and ideas. It is very original and personal, and I want to thank the consultants who have proofread my draft so patiently for me. My tutor stimulated me to think about how a summer law course influenced my decision to take law as a subject at university. She also furthered my knowledge on the rule of law. Talking to the consultant made me realize that certain areas can be expanded and that my main ideas can be discussed in greater depth. She also gave me concrete suggestions on how to cut down the words and include essential points.
Another tutor gave me advice on the LNAT which helped me become familiarized with the test format. I improved in working under time constraints, especially in the essay section because precision and efficiency in writing is so important. My counselor gave me comments on my essays that helped me expand my scope of thinking. Brain storming exercises also made me realize the variety of perspectives and aspects I can mention in essays. I also improved a lot in the MC session with her help. We discussed questions that were particularly tricky so that I can grasp essential skills in answering the MCs. I feel more confident when doing the test after the LNAT sessions.
The LNAT sessions helped me gain confidence because I was initially intimidated by the MCs, which seemed quite daunting. I also became more familiar with the essay types. Furthermore, the interview preparations were a lot of fun, since I get to learn more about legal issues and the mock interviews stimulated my thinking. All in all I'm really satisfied with the entire experience.
W.C., Yale and Oxford offer holder
ARCH’s admissions counseling services are not just like any other services. It is tailor made to each and every individual, assessing the needs and augmenting the strengths. The services I received were unique - it combined expert guidance for both UK/US admissions. Beyond personal statements, the UK counseling strength lies in preparation for interview. Given the interview myth that surrounds Oxbridge interviews, ARCH gives one an idea of interviews, and more importantly guidelines for preparation. On the other hand, the US counseling services is of a completely different nature. Firstly, the speed and versatility provided by the US team is of extreme efficiency. Next, I have to applaud how the US counselors tailor each application to the applicant's nature. Another rewarding aspect is perhaps information that cannot be easily obtained by surfing the web - the strengths and atmosphere of each US college/university, the status quo and how an applicant would fit in.
A.T., Cambridge applicant
Sam was very helpful and thoughtful throughout the process. Sam gave me important advices in different stages of my application. Sam was also very quick in replying and addressing my concerns, which definitely smoothened my application process a lot. The entire experience is invaluable. Not only has it equipped me with necessary skills and knowledge to prepare for the admissions test, it has also benefited me on my studies as it stretched my dimensions and trained my thinking skills.
N.G., Cambridge offer holder in Economics
The whole preparation experience was actually quite intense, I felt like I always had to get to the next stage right after completing the previous stage. Nonetheless it’s very rewarding indeed.
The help on personal statement is sharply focused and highly effective, I couldn’t imagine producing one that is half as good as this one without any help from ARCH. I learnt a lot during the skype sessions with my Economics tutor, such as the methods to evaluate economic data and to approach a question through different directions to carry out an in-depth and substantive discussion on economic issues and theories.
It’s been a great pleasure to have ARCH as my partner throughout my application to Cambridge and other top UK universities.
M.C., Imperial offer holder in Biomedical Sciences
Thank you so much, ARCH, for making my UK application so smooth and easy. I would definitely recommend ARCH to my friends and relatives!
From the very beginning, ARCH helped me to choose my 5 university choices by introducing me the variety of difference courses and institutions, allowing me to make an informed decision on which universities to go for. Even though I applied for 3 separate yet related courses, my counselor helped me to incorporate elements of all three! He also encouraged me to read widely around the subjects, and suggested books which I could look at! During our personal statement sessions, I was prompted to organize my ideas which helped to make experiences sound more reflective and impressive than in my initial drafts. I was guided through the structure as well as flow of the essay, and was supported by my counselor throughout the process.
Chloe, Columbia University offer holder
Thank you so much for everything! Without you, I would not have gotten in.
C.C., Cambridge applicant
The preparation experience was extremely beneficial in particular putting emphasis on the academic knowledge in Biology and Chemistry. Additionally it was reinforced that I had to explicitly lay out my thought process to illustrate my understanding of the proposed question.