“Cambridge’s great strength is the partnership between the University and the Colleges. This combination provides superb facilities, contact with the very best minds, and personal tuition and support to develop your academic interests.

A Cambridge education offers you the chance to engage with academics at the forefront of research in their, and your, discipline.

We also provide many opportunities to engage socially – in activities such as sports, performing and literary arts, and charity work – as well as to develop knowledge and transferable skills to prepare you for the future.

Here you will pursue your intellectual curiosity and acquire the habits of mind which will enhance your future experience of life, whatever turn it may take. Cambridge students are greatly sought after by employers and the University has one of the highest graduate employment rates in the country.

By offering generous financial support we are confident that the education we offer is truly accessible to all with the academic ability and potential to succeed here.

There is no ‘right background’ for Cambridge – no right school to have attended, no hidden test of social and economic circumstances.

Quite simply, if you have the ability, the enthusiasm and the motivation to study here, then we want to hear from you.”

A global community

Cambridge is a great place to be a student and has a truly diverse community. Just over 11 per cent of our undergraduates (around 1,300 students) are from overseas (outside the EU), representing more than 65 countries. Wherever you’re from, you’ll quickly start to make friends and feel at home, and with everything that’s on offer, you’ll soon wonder how you’re going to fit it all in.

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International applications

Application overview


All applicants to the University of Cambridge must submit a UCAS application online by the relevant deadline.

In addition to a UCAS application, applicants from outside the European Union (EU) must submit a Cambridge Online Preliminary Application (COPA). Please note that there is an overseas application fee of £30 associated with the COPA. See COPA fees for further details.

In both your UCAS application and COPA, you should indicate the Cambridge College to which you wish to apply.

  • It is essential that your choice of Cambridge College on your UCAS application and COPA match. If there is a discrepancy, your choice of College on your UCAS application will take precedence.
  • If you have no preference for a particular College, you can choose the ‘open’ application option in both your UCAS application and COPA, and your application will be allocated to a College by computer. Please note that there is no open application route for affiliated applicants and they must apply to a College.
  • Please note that it is not possible under any circumstances to change your choice of Cambridge College/open application once you have submitted your UCAS application and COPA.

If you would like to be considered for interview in one of the countries where we conduct overseas interviews, please refer to our application timetable.

Supplementary Application Questionnaire (SAQ)

Once you have submitted your UCAS application, you will receive an email from us directing you to submit the Supplementary Application Questionnaire (SAQ) by a specific deadline. You must log in to the SAQ and enter the COPA Reference Number you received when you submitted the COPA. Your application to the University will not be valid until you have submitted the SAQ as well.

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It can take up to 24 hours for your COPA Reference Number to come through and a while for your UCAS application to be processed so you will not receive details of the SAQ immediately. In both instances, check your email inbox and ‘junk’/’spam’ folder regularly.

Academic transcripts

You may be required to submit academic transcripts for your application to the University of Cambridge to be valid. To determine whether you are required to submit transcripts, please see our transcripts page.

Interviews and Admissions Tests

Everyone with a realistic chance of being offered a place is invited to attend an interview. A reasonable standard in spoken English is required at the time of interview. See English language requirements for details.

Information on why we interview, what to expect and how to prepare can be found on our main interviews pages.

The University also conducts a number of interviews overseas – see overseas interviews for details.

All applicants interviewed overseas are required to take an admissions test. This admissions test is administered by the overseas interview team (often prior to the interview itself) and forms a compulsory part of our assessment. Details of the admissions test are normally supplied to shortlisted applicants together with details of their interview.


We’ll advise you of our decision before the end of January. If you’re offered a place, you’ll be informed by the College and through UCAS – you must reply, observing UCAS requirements and deadlines.

EU & International qualifications

Country specific qualifications

Whichever system you’re being educated in, we require top grades in the highest level qualifications available for school/college students, and assess students not only on their achievements in these qualifications, but also on their ability and readiness to join in discussion of their subject.


Typical offer levels for a range of qualifications including the European Baccalaureate andInternational Baccalaureate can be found in the main entrance requirements section.

If you intend to make an application, it is important to check your country page to ensure the qualifications you are studying are considered suitable preparation for entry to the University of Cambridge.

If you are studying for a different qualification from those listed, it is a good idea to make early contact with the Cambridge Admissions Office to check that it provides an appropriate preparation for the course you wish to study

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