UNIVERSITY OF OXFORD
University Offices, Wellington Square, Oxford OX1 2JD
04 February 2020
Reply to request for information under the Freedom of Information Act
Your email of 8 January 2020
Dear Fattema Altemimi,
I write in reply to your email of Wednesday 8 January, requesting the above information.
Please find the requested information in the attached spreadsheet.
Your request is for detailed individual level data for a single application cycle. We consider that
disclosure of this information in full/in the form requested might enable those with access to other
information or knowledge (e.g. those associated with individuals who are known to have applied) to
identify individuals and learn new information about those individuals. For this reason, we have taken
the following measures to reduce the risk of individuals being identified:
We have divided up the information between separate tabs;
We have sorted each tab independently of the others so that the rows are not standardised
across the tabs;
We have withheld shortlisting and offer data from the following tabs: ‘BMAT Scores’, ‘GCSE
Grades’ and ‘A Level & IB Predicted Grades’;
We have presented data on contextual flags (POLAR and ACORN) in an aggregated form.
In taking these measures, we are applying the exemption in section 40(2) of the Freedom of
Information Act (FOIA). Section 40(2) provides an exemption from disclosure for information that is
the personal data of an individual other than the requester, where disclosure would breach any of the
data protection principles in Article 5 of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). We consider
that disclosure of the information requested in the exact form requested would breach the first data
protection principle, which requires that personal data is processed lawfully, fairly and in a transparent
manner. Disclosure would be unfair to the individuals concerned, as it would be contrary to their
reasonable and legitimate expectations. They would not reasonably expect that information about their
qualifications or other information relating to their application to Oxford would be made public under
the FOIA without their consent.
For the disclosure of personal data to be lawful, it must have a lawful basis under Article 6 of the GDPR.
There are six possible lawful bases in Article 6; we do not consider that any of them would be satisfied
in respect of the disclosure.
The exemption in section 40(2) is an absolute exemption and is not subject to the public interest test
provided for in section 2(2)(b) of the FOIA. To the extent that the public interest is relevant in this
case, the University considers it is satisfied by the attached information. INTERNAL REVIEW
If you are dissatisfied with this reply, you may ask the University to review it, by writing to the Head of
Information Compliance at the following address:
Alternatively, you may request a review by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org
THE INFORMATION COMMISSIONER
If, after the internal review, you are still dissatisfied, you have the right under FOIA to apply to the
Information Commissioner for a decision as to whether your request has been dealt with in accordance
with the FOIA. The Information Commissioner’s address is:
Tel: 0303 123113
Further information for submitting complaints to the Information Commissioner is available at
According to the Freedom of Information Act, I am requesting a single spreadsheet on undergraduate
admissions statistics to the A100 Medicine course at Oxford Medical School for this admission cycle
I would like the spreadsheet to include:
1) The bmat results (per section as well as the mean percentage) for each applicant this year.
2) The predicted grades (IB and A level) for all applicants.
3) GCSE results (or equivalent) for all applicants.
4) whether they were contextual or non-contextual applicants.
5) whether they got shorlisted or not
It would be preferred for these statistics to be given in order from highest to lowest results. I would
also like for all this information to be given in one document instead of multiple documents per point,
so that one can look at the application in its entirety. Of course, by not including any names this can
be done without breaking confidentiality. I am looking forward to hearing from you soon.