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These are some of the questions we are often asked, but if you have a different question please do contact us.


What are the minimum entry requirements at Cambridge?

The typical conditional A Level offer will be A*AA or A*A*A, depending on the course. In countries where an A* grade at A Level is not available, three A grades would be acceptable. Other conditions may form part of your offer, such as STEP. Details of subject requirements can be found on our individual course pages. If you have a particular query, please contact a member of the admissions team on

Which subjects are available at Lucy Cavendish College?

Lucy Cavendish admits undergraduates in all subjects offered by the University of Cambridge, including the Cambridge Graduate Course in Medicine (A101) and Affiliated Medicine (A100).

Can I apply to both Oxford and Cambridge?

It is not possible to apply to both Oxford and Cambridge in the same year.

I will be under 18 at the time of entry in October 2021.  Can I still apply?

Yes!  However, applicants should be aware that Medicine students must be 18 by the start of their second term in order to be eligible to begin their professional training. 

Will my application be looked at negatively if I take a Gap Year?

Tell us if you are planning a Gap Year. Experience is useful, but not compulsory, for subjects like Engineering, Modern & Medieval Languages, Medicine, and Vet Medicine.

Do I stand a better chance of getting offered a place if I make an open application (i.e. do not select a College)?

You are no more, and no less, likely to be admitted if you apply as an open applicant. Open applications are allocated to a College by a computer algorithm.

How do international qualifications relate to A levels?

Information about A Level equivalents for international applicants can be read on the Cambridge website here

Do you have subject quotas?

The University caps the number of places that are offered in Architecture, History of Art, Music, and Philosophy, and there are quotas for Medicine and Vet Medicine.

Do you look at GCSEs?

GCSE results are looked at as an indicator of academic achievement, but within the context of the performance of the school/college where they were achieved. 

Can I transfer from another university?

Cambridge does not allow transfers onto any degree course.  However a false start elsewhere is unlikely to have a negative bearing on our assessment if an applicant provides an explanation as part of their application.  Applications from students who have failed at or have been excluded from another medical school will not normally be considered for entry to Medicine at Cambridge.

What if I have a disability?

Contact our Admissions Office early in your preparation to discuss the support available from the University and College.  The University's Disability Resource Centre website offers guidance about support and how to access it.

What is STEP?

Achievement in the Sixth Term Examination Papers (STEP) normally forms part of a conditional offer to read mathematics at Cambridge. The examinations are administered by the Admissions Testing Service and are taken in late June. 

You can find out more information about STEP here -

What weighting is given to the different parts of my application?

No particular weight is attached to any one piece of information; rather, all candidates are assessed individually and holistically using all available information. 

How is contextual data used?

We are committed to ensuring that we offer admission to students of the highest intellectual potential, irrespective of social, racial, religious or financial considerations. To achieve this, every applicant is considered individually in an holistic assessment using all the information available to us.  If anything has happened which caused you significant educational or home life disruption, it may be appropriate for the school/college referee or the applicant’s doctor or social worker to complete and submit an extenuating circumstances form.  Further information about this form can be found here:

How many applicants get offered an interview?

We aim to interview all applicants with a realistic chance of an offer - generally those who are on track to meet the typical conditional offers in the required subjects.  Around 75% of UK/EU Cambridge applicants are interviewed each year.

How should I prepare for interview?

You can find out more information about what to expect from interviews in our "How to Apply" section.


What is the Winter Pool?

The Winter Pool is designed to ensure that high performing applicants who cannot be offered a place due to the competition at their original choice of College have the chance of being offered places at other colleges. Colleges would rather admit a strong applicant from the pool than a weaker applicant who applied directly to them. Being placed in the Winter Pool depends on the quality of an application, performance at interview, and any written work supplied.  More information about the winter pool can be found on the University’s website

When will I likely hear about whether I have been offered a place?

Applicants who have been interviewed by Cambridge are normally contacted with the outcome of their application in January.

Can I appeal against an admissions decision?

Admissions decisions taken by Cambridge Colleges are not normally reviewed unless it appears after investigation that a serious procedural error has occurred, as detailed on the University website.

What happens if I miss my offer?

Your place is only guaranteed if you meet all the conditions of your offer by 31st August.  Missed offers are handled on a case-by-case basis.

Does the University of Cambridge take part in UCAS Adjustment?

Yes, the University of Cambridge currently takes part in Adjustment for some applicants who have been interviewed at Cambridge but not offered a place initially. 


Do I have to live in Cambridge?

Cambridge is a residential university and undergraduates are required to live within three miles of the centre of Cambridge during term.

Can I work during term time?

Undergraduates at Cambridge are not allowed to take paid employment during each eight week Full Term, but they can work during University vacations.



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