English Literature and Maths Personal Statement

To achieve a greater understanding of life, I feel the study of English and Maths is a necessity; to understand mathematics is to understand the mechanics of the physical world. For example, using maths, we can predict the weather but because of the mechanics behind chaos theory, there's so much affecting it that we still can't be certain. This mirrors the study of literature; by reading and analysing literature and the linguistics used, we gain an insight into another psyche and the chance to observe the world from another view, giving us a greater understanding of humanity as a whole; however we have to take into account the personal bias of the author. The same creativity you use to solve an equation, you also use to analyse poetry. Both are puzzles, compressing something wild and mysterious into a format we can understand and apply to the understanding and solving of something else, linking us through time, immortalising Pythagoras and Shakespeare equally.

Through studying this course, I hope to continue that chain. I am particularly interested in both poetry, and the practical applications of maths. My keen interest in poetry began a few years ago. I stumbled across Ted Hughes' "Birthday Letters" and when I read "Red" it inspired me to look deeper at the world around me and the way you can connect with a piece of literature not only through reading but reaching a deeper level of understanding through analysis. When I began the university application process I wanted to study maths because it is the ultimate transferrable skill and there are countries in desperate need of teachers. Whilst I still aspire to travel and teach, I'd never before considered the full spectrum of research possibilities open to maths graduates. All research has an element of maths and would benefit from a specialist. I'm particularly interested in assisting environmental research. Through teaching I could improve the lives of hundreds of people; through research: billions.

In the year before my A levels, through drive and perseverance, I created an apprentice position for myself as a care assistant at a residential home which, whilst physically and emotionally draining, was extremely rewarding and helped me acquire not only greater drive but also increased resilience. Specific incidents regularly forced me to be flexible and adapt, using creative solutions to get everything done in a way acceptable to all. As staff we had to find ways to engage with people to combat feelings of isolation and I did so by asking them about the things surrounding them and gained listening skills and empathy by paying attention to what they liked to talk about and encouraging them without patronising or prying. These listening skills were helpful during my time mentoring GCSE maths students during my AS year. Because of the different learning styles of each student, I had to learn how to explain problems from a different perspective. These skills were used again in my Politics A level. Due to outside circumstances in the beginning of AS year, we have had to complete the course without a subject specific tutor which has severely impacted our grades. In response I personally organised and led extra revision sessions and study groups. Arranging this around the schedules of twenty people challenged my organisational skills and leading these sessions developed my communication skills which I used again as student representative this year.

Because of my hard work, my involvement in student life and my efforts to enable students to support each other academically, I completed my AS year having won academic achievement awards in all of my subjects and the AS student of the year award and was also selected this year to act as student representative. Despite facing challenges in both my personal life and in academia my dedication and focus has never wavered. My attitude to education remains devoted and I look forward to the challenges posed at degree level.

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Got conditional offers from the University of Glasgow, University of Dundee, University of Liverpool, University of Brighton, and the University of Derby.

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