Going to Oxford or Cambridge
Oxbridge is the term used for both the University of Cambridge and the University of Oxford. They are two separate institutions and are two of the most recognised and respected universities in the world.
Should I go to Oxbridge?
You should not make a decision to go to a particular university just because someone else advised you to. The best chance you have to enjoy your time at higher education is to attend a university that you want to go to. Try to visit each institution so you can get a feel of what they have to offer.
Oxford or Cambridge?
Both universities have been around for centuries and boast a rich history. Even though Cambridge has a pretty river and previous prime ministers have studied at Oxford, it is best to weigh up some of the facts of each institution to determine if they are right for you.
If you are thinking about taking a joint degree, then Oxford is the option for you as Cambridge doesn’t offer this. Cambridge has a small town feel like almost a fifth of the population is taken up by students alone, and Oxford has more of a nightlife atmosphere. The best way to find out which one is right for you is to look at the courses they offer.
Why is applying to Oxbridge different?
When applying for Oxbridge, or any other highly respected university, you need to be prepared for the pace of studying at these institutions. The first thing you will need for your application is your grades or predicted grades, Oxbridge applicants from the previous two years have had an average of 400 UCAS points or A*A*A. You’ll need to calculate your points intake on a UCAS Points Calculator as well!
80% of Oxford subject areas require you to take a test before attending; this is to test your previous knowledge and enthusiasm of the area. The deadline for Oxbridge is the 15th October which is three months earlier than the majority of universities or courses not in or related to a Medicine degree.
My personal statement?
We advise broadening your knowledge on your subject area, so you are better informed when writing your personal statement. Oxbridge are interested in your academic ambitions and want to be sure their courses will provide the right path for you. Talk about your ambitions and show your passion by reading as much as you can on the subject.
What help will I need with the interview?
The interview is a chance for Oxbridge to explore your potential and to gain a better insight into your personality. This is your chance to show them who you are and how enthusiastic you are about studying. Read up on your subject area and what modules you will be taking on your chosen course to show the research you have done. Oxbridge make their decisions on an individual basis and dedicate their time to interviewing the majority of applicants. Use this time to shine and show how amazing you are!
Exams and tests?
The majority of Oxford subject areas require entry admissions tests. We advise taking a mock exam at least two months before to see where your weaknesses lie, ask your tutor or teachers for previous test examples. The prospectus will have all the information you need on the pre-tests for different courses.
The best interview tip we can give you is to show how passionate you are about your subject area. What Oxbridge are looking for is someone enthusiastic who will dedicate three to four years of their academic life to this area. Talk about anything and everything that relates you to this area, do not spend too much time talking about other subjects. It may be great that you were the captain of your college’s basketball team, but will that help you perform titrations in a Biology degree?