Hey! I’m Michał, a second-year Philosophy, Politics and Economics (PPE) student at Corpus from Cracow, Poland. I am a history, economics and politics enthusiast who loves to learn new things, read books and debate. I would also describe myself as an idealistic pragmatist who wants to change the world for the better.
I decided to apply to Oxford without the necessary knowledge of how to get into the best university in the world but with the belief that I would be able to make up for these shortcomings during the process. Thanks to this very daring approach, I have gained valuable knowledge that I want to share with an utmost willingness with future PPEists, especially with international students.
The PPE course is designed to start with an holistic understanding of all three subjects, grounded in the first year. From there, you can specialise more in the second year, with the option of doing just two, or all three, of the subjects, and choose your own modules within them. Having covered such a broad spread in the first year, you are well placed to know what areas really interest you and what you want to pursue further. No exams count towards your degree until your third year (the final year), so you have plenty of time to explore all these options and find where you belong within the course.
Corpus is the “small and friendly” college, which makes for such a cosy and welcoming environment where anyone can feel at home (especially because first-years usually all live in the same set of five buildings next door to one another). For PPEists, the size also means there is only a very small cohort of us: seven ‘corpuscles’ are doing PPE in my year. Being such a small group gives us a real sense of camaraderie. We are never made to compete with, or are we compared to, one another, so we all want to help each other and the college do as well as possible.
For those of you worried about the workload, I’ve usually had around nine lectures and two to three tutorials a week. Tutorials will each require an assignment, such as an essay or a worksheet, which you’ll then discuss with your tutor in a session, usually with one or two other PPEists. It may sound daunting at first, but as you get to know your tutors the tutorials are often genuinely enjoyable. See them as a conversation with people just as interested in the topics at hand as you and a chance to get advice and questions answered from an expert who’s there to help you.
There is, of course, plenty of time for you to get involved in clubs and societies all over Oxford, and they’re a great way to meet people from other colleges and other courses. As well as plenty of sports, hobbies, LGBTQ+ and other societies as you'd expect, there is naturally an abundance of political societies across the political spectrum: from the Labour Club to the Conservative Association and from ‘Champagne and Socialism’ to the Oxford Union. There are also more academic societies, which hold talks from guest speakers and experts. These societies are highly accessible and you can just turn up to whichever talks interest you, my personal favourites being the International Relations Society, the Economics Society, the PPE Society and the Polish Society.
Do email me if you have any questions or worries, and I’ll, of course, also be around for the Open Days1 and the interview period2. I hope to see you soon!
1 Please note that the Open Days on 30 June, 1 July and 17 September 2021 are virtual.
2 Please note that interviews will be held online in 2021.
Resources categorised by subject and by Key Stage, as well as materials for applying to Oxford and finding out more about Corpus, can be found here.