Cambridge courses specialise in single subjects or subject areas, for which A Level examinations (or equivalent), covering three or four subjects in depth, are the usual preparation. We ask for the highest grades in these subjects, and assess students not only on their achievements in these exams, but also on their ability and readiness to join in discussion of their subject. This is one of the reasons for interviewing as many applicants as we can.
Just over 10 per cent of our undergraduates come from overseas (outside the UK and EU). (The proportion of postgraduate students from overseas is much higher, at around 40 per cent.) If you wish to apply for an undergraduate place here, you need to be in the top one or two per cent of your year group, and doing very well in the subject area you would like to study.
Typical offer levels for a range of qualifications can be found in the Entrance Requirements pages. If you're studying for a different education qualification, you should get in touch as soon as possible to discuss the appropriateness of your qualifications for study at Cambridge. In the first instance you should contact the Cambridge Admissions Office for advice, providing:
brief details of the qualifications that you have taken/are taking your achieved/expected grades the subject you're interested in applying for at the University You'll then be advised on course requirements, further information needed, and how you'll be assessed.
English language requirements
It is essential that your English language skills are good enough for you to undertake an intensive and challenging academic course that is taught and examined in English. Therefore, if your first language is not English, you may be asked to achieve one of the following formal qualifications as part of the conditions of your offer*:
IELTS - normally a minimum overall grade of 7.0, usually with 7.0 in each element EU students - a high grade in English taken as part of a leaving examination (eg the European/French Baccalaureate, Abitur etc) may be acceptable GCSE in English Language / IGCSE English Language (as a first language) - grade C or above Cambridge Certificate in Advanced English - grade A Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English - grade A or B
The University Language Centre runs an English for Academic Purposes (EAP) programme for students who aren't native English speakers. Designed to help improve English language and academic skills relevant to your course through workshops and individual supervisions, attendance on the programme may be included as a condition of entry to the University.
*Dispensation may be made if you don't have one of these formal qualifications but are currently being taught in English. Please contact one of the College admissions offices for advice.