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The application process for mature students is the same as that for standard-age students. See the Applying section for details.

Application deadlines

The standard deadline for applications for 2017 entry (or deferred entry in 2018) to be received is 15 October 2016. All mature applicants making an open application or applying to a standard-age College must submit their application by the 15 October deadline.

Mature student second application round

The four mature Colleges (Hughes Hall, Lucy Cavendish, St Edmund's and Wolfson) consider mature and affiliate applications for some subjects as part of a second application round, the deadline for which is 1 March 2017.

The following subjects are excluded from the second round, and applications for these courses must be submitted by the 15 October deadline:

  • Architecture
  • History of Art
  • Medicine
  • Graduate Course in Medicine
  • Music
  • Philosophy
  • Veterinary Medicine

Please note that for Law, applications to St Edmund's College or Wolfson College must be submitted by the 15 October deadline. However, Hughes Hall and Lucy Cavendish College both consider applications for Law as part of the second application round, the deadline for which is 1 March.

You may apply to one of the mature Colleges for all other subjects in the second round, although you're encouraged to apply in the first round if possible. If you're considering applying in the second round (or for entry in future years), we recommend that you contact the admissions office at one of the mature Colleges for advice. The second application round is not open to candidates who applied in the first October round.

Application deadlines for mature and affiliate applicants
15 October 2016 Mature and affiliate applicants
  • applying to a standard-age College for any subject
  • applying to any College to study Architecture, History of Art, Medicine, Graduate Course in Medicine, Music, Philosophy or Veterinary Medicine
  • making an open application (mature applicants only)
  • applying in the first application round to Hughes Hall, Lucy Cavendish College, St Edmund’s College or Wolfson College
1 March 2017 Mature and affiliate applicants applying in the second application round to
  • Hughes Hall, Lucy Cavendish College, St Edmund’s College or Wolfson College to study any subject except Architecture, History of Art, Medicine, Graduate Course in Medicine, Music, Philosophy or Veterinary Medicine (see note above regarding Law)

Entrance requirements

We recommend that you get in touch with one or more Colleges well before you make your formal application to check their response to your academic preparation.

As a mature student at Cambridge, you’re expected to be of an equal academic standard to school leavers; and the nature and demands of Cambridge courses, and the requirement to produce independent work every week, means that some form of academic preparation is required. Therefore, you’re expected to demonstrate evidence of recent academic achievement (usually within two years of applying) at a high level, for example an Access to HE Diploma, A Level(s) or an Open University course (Level 2 or above). Such qualifications also develop essential study skills required for university courses (eg essay writing, autonomous study, examination technique).

Guidance on the level of qualifications needed for study here can be found in the main Entrance Requirements section of this website. In particular, you may be interested in the information relating to:

Please note that an Access to HE Diploma is not sufficient preparation for any of our Science courses nor for our Economics course.

Admission assessments

If you're a mature student (aged 21 or over) applying to a mature College for interview in Cambridge you aren't required to take any pre-interview assessments, except the Biomedical Admission Test (BMAT) which all Medicine and Veterinary Medicine applicants are required to take. For courses with a pre-interview assessment, you'll take a common format written assessment at interview in Cambridge (if interviewed) instead.

If you're a mature student applying to a mature College and wishing to be considered for interview overseas, or if you're a mature student applying to a standard age College, you must take any required pre-interview assessment on 2 November 2016 (please note that applicants must be registered in advance for pre-interview assessments). Applicants taking the pre-interview written assessments overseas must check the Admissions Testing Service website as the scheduled start times for international centres may vary. Please note that for some overseas interview locations, 'pre-interview' assessments may take place after your interview. In this situation, your written assessment will still be considered by your Cambridge College along with your overseas interview report.