Image: Eleanor Thomson
Image: Eleanor Thomson

How we assess DPhil applications


Read the form we use to assess every DPhil application:

Assessment of Application for Graduate Study

Name of Applicant  
Course Applied For Doctor of Philosophy in Geography and the Environment
Assessor's name  

Please note Divisional guidelines for supervision is a maximum of 8 students for Statutory Chairs and Associate Professors without tutorial fellowships and 6 for those with.

Please tick relevant box :
Bachelor results Mid 2.1 or below  
High Upper Second (2:i) or equivalent  
Low First Class or equivalent  
Solid First Class or equivalent  
Outstanding First Class or equivalent  
Masters Low Pass or equivalent  
Merit or equivalent  
Distinction or equivalent  
Achieved:   Predicted:  
Written work Strong undergraduate-level work  
Demonstrates signs of postgraduate-level analytical and critical acumen  
Consistent postgraduate-level analytical and critical acumen  
Some signs of doctoral-level work  
Consistent signs of doctoral-level work  
References Significant reservations  
Lukewarm, noncommittal support  
Generally worded support, or suggesting strong rather than outstanding applicant  
Convincingly strong support with reference to relevant academic skills  
Preparedness Generally short on background knowledge and skills  
Serious lack of subject-specific or relevant training  
Gaps in background knowledge which could be remedied by judicious or guided reading  
Solid background, but applicant may require specific training  
Excellent background knowledge  
Has published work on the topic  
Has published peer-reviewed work  
Proposal General indication of interests only or badly conceived project/overworked subject  
Project requires honing and development but has clear potential and viability  
Well-conceived and viable project which also demonstrates the applicant's potential  
Promising and original project, seemingly matched by the applicant's strengths  
Academic Fit No or very little synergy with research conducted in the school, centre and/or by individual supervisor(s)  
Considerable synergies with research conducted in the school, centre and/or by individual supervisor(s)  
Very significant synergies with research conducted in the school and/or by individual supervisor(s)  
Assessment Comments
Please detail any contact you have had with this applicant
Please indicate if you are willing to supervise this applicant Yes / No
Overall Recommendation Please make use of full marking scale. Those assessing multiple applicants are asked to rank these via email to the Research Degrees Co-ordinator. Ranking should take account of all applications you have assessed in the November and January admissions rounds. Grade Tick relevant box
Reject 7  
Borderline 6  
Offer 5  
Offer 4  
Offer 3  
Offer - very strong applicant, likely in top 10% of applicant pool 2  
Offer - outstanding applicant, likely in top 5% of applicant pool 1  


If you have any questions about the University's application process you are strongly advised to contact the University of Oxford Graduate Admissions Office, tel: +44 (0)1865 270059, or by e-mail: taking particular care to follow the instructions in the automatic reply, in the first instance.

If you have any further questions that have not been answered by the information provided by the Graduate Admissions Office or our website then please contact the Research Degrees Coordinator at the School of Geography and the Environment.