• I want to apply to Oxbridge…now what?

    If you are thinking about studying at Oxford or Cambridge (Oxbridge), it’s never too early to take a proper look at whether either of these universities is actually the right choice for you and what you’d need to do in order to have a chance of getting in.

    Click here to read more about how Holland Park can support and direct you on your Oxford or Cambridge application

    Johanna Roodt, one of Holland Park’s top Oxbridge consultants advises on how to start preparing for an application to the most competitive universities in the world.

    As a first step I would recommend you start thoroughly researching these universities online. If you can, I’d even recommend you make a trip to the cities to get a feel for them and whether you could imagine staying there for 3+ years. If that’s not feasible, then look at pictures and videos online and read about what other people say.

    Next, I would have a deep think about what you would like to study. Studying at either of these universities is highly demanding and it is therefore extremely important to be passionate about the course you choose. If you aren’t then a) they will probably notice it at the interview and b) you won’t have a good time at university at all.

    Think about your favourite subjects at school, what you love to do in your free time and what kind of job you might like to do. Perhaps take a course finder quiz online or have a chat with me!

    Once you have decided on one or a couple of courses that interest you, make sure to read about them in detail on the two universities’ websites. Just because a course is called the same, doesn’t mean it’s made up of the same modules. Also, some courses might include a year abroad and others might not. Know what you want and find out which university offers the course that fits you better. Remember, you can only apply to one of the two universities, not both.

    Find out what entry requirements there are and work towards meeting them. Take action now! It’s never too soon to do an internship, learn another language, hire a tutor, improve your grades… If anything is unclear to you regarding the entry/ application process, ask for help.

    Tell your teachers that you are thinking of applying so they may support you.

    Additionally, try to as much as possible increase your knowledge about your course of choice by reading around it and if applicable following the news/ recent developments about it. This will help you confirm for yourself whether or not you made the right choice and will help you write your personal statement, do well in the interview and even during your studies later on.

    I would also recommend that you try to get in touch with students who are currently studying your course or course alumni to get a real feel for what it will be like to study your chosen subject at your chosen university. I will be very happy to help you with this and with any of the above. Simply get in touch at any point. Again, the sooner the better so we can make a plan together.

    Lastly, believe in yourself! Always remember: “Believe that you can and you are halfway there!” (Theodore Roosevelt)

    About Johanna:

    In 2009 Johanna was accepted to Murray Edwards College of the University of Cambridge to study a BA and MA in East Asian Studies (Japanese language, Business and culture of Asia…). This cemented her understanding of what it means to apply to an elite university such as Cambridge. These days, Johanna sits on the board of her college and istherefore very up-to-date with the current situation at Cambridge colleges and at the university as a whole. She has since helped 35+ students successfully apply to and be accepted to Cambridge and Oxford. She helps with UCAS, course and college choice, motivational letter writing, interview and entrance exam prep and more.

    Please call us at 0207 034 0800 or email [email protected] for details on a bespoke Oxbridge preparation package tailored to suit your needs, written and managed by Johanna herself.



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