Why you should start planning for Oxbridge Entry now!

Updated: Mar 1

Lucy Holland read Classics at Oxford before studying law at the College of Law in London. She worked as a solicitor in private practice and in government, and also has a Masters in Philosophy. Lucy is the Oxbridge Co-ordinator for Carfax Education and she serves as Schools Liaison on the Oxford and Cambridge Alumni Society UAE committee.

University of Oxford


Have you always dreamed of the ‘Dreaming Spires’? Of walking in the footsteps of Nobel laureates and industry leaders? The route to an undergraduate career at Oxford or Cambridge is by no means straightforward, but start preparing early with expert advisers, and you can stand a much greater chance of success.


As two of the most prestigious and highly sought after universities in the world, it is not surprising that the applications to both institutions number in the thousands. In 2019, 23,000 people applied for undergraduate study at Oxford for 3,300 places and 19,359 students applied to study at Cambridge for 3,528 places.


There is no denying it is a very competitive field – you will be competing with some of the brightest students around the globe. However, if you have what they are looking for then you have just as good a chance of getting is as anyone else!


Aside from top academic results, what both universities are really interested in is how intellectually curious you are and how passionate you are about your subject. They want to know if you can think outside of the box and how you think about challenges and solve problems.


Thinking of applying to Oxford or Cambridge? Contact our education consultancy team at enquiries.uae@carfax-education.com to find out more about how we support students to make competitive Oxbridge applications.


Whilst the application process, like other UK universities, is via UCAS there are some significant differences. Firstly, there is a tighter deadline, all Oxbridge applications have to be submitted by 15th October.


There are also several more steps involved with additional tests to take, supplementary work to submit and further questionnaires to fill out. The Personal Statement is of a different calibre and needs to have a particular focus and should highlight the kind of commitment to your subject revealed by the depth and breadth of your reading and interests.


Once all of this information has been evaluated, you may then be invited to interview. On average Oxford interviews approximately 30% of their applicants and Cambridge interviews closer to 60%. The interview process is not only designed to see how passionate you are about your subject but to see if you are ‘teachable’ in the unique one to one teaching style at Oxbridge.

University of Cambridge


The Carfax Oxbridge Preparation programme is designed to offer an in depth and thorough preparation for students who wish to make a competitive application. Guided by Oxbridge graduates who have been through the process themselves, you’ll be mentored as you draft your Personal Statement, and helped to make an informed decision on college choice. You will have a personalised programme to prepare you for pre-interview tests and a series of one to one Master Classes with subject specialist tutors. These classes will take you beyond the confines of the school curriculum, with an in depth introduction to specific areas of the course and a supervised independent research project, which you will present in an Oxbridge style tutorial.


This holistic approach will develop the key academic skills of independent research, critical thinking and intellectual curiosity that are essential for any potential Oxbridge student. In addition, you will have one to one interview preparation and then join our Oxbridge interview prep day where you will put these skills into practice.


Our Oxbridge Preparation programme is supervised and closely monitored by a senior Oxbridge co-ordinator, who will identify extension opportunities, additional courses and resources to help you develop and build a competitive profile. The Carfax team are there to demystify the entire process, and help you make your application, confident in the knowledge you are putting your best self forward!


To find out more about our University Preparation Services, please contact Shelly at enquiries.uae@carfax-education.com


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