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Undergraduate Study

What are my chances of getting in?

This is one of the most frequently asked questions about applying to Cambridge. 

On average across all subjects, we typically receive six applications per place, but naturally there is some variation between courses. 

College choice or making an open application does not affect your chance of being made an offer because we compare all applicants for each subject before selection decisions are finalised.

Directors of Studies in each subject meet to discuss the overall standard of applications so they can see how their own College’s applicants compare. Then, the best applicants who could not be accepted by their original College can be made an offer by another College through the ‘winter pool’. 

The pool results in many students (750 in the case of the 2022 cycle - about 18 per cent of all offers made) receiving an offer from a College other than the one they applied to. This means that success rates are very similar from College to College.

The University and Colleges are committed to offering admission to students of the highest academic ability and potential, and would rather admit a strong applicant from the pool than a weaker applicant who applied directly to them (or who was allocated through the open application system).

NB: 'Admissions cycle' refers to the UCAS cycle in which applications were considered. For example, the '2022 cycle' refers to applications made from September 2021 onwards, for courses starting in October 2022 or deferred entry in 2023.

    Applications statistics graph generator

    To view the graph, select from the options below and click 'Show graph'. 

    You can generate a graph showing undergraduate application and admissions statistics based on a variety of criteria, including College and course. Please note:

    • 'Acceptances through Summer Pool' includes applicants accepted via Adjustment, as well as offer-holders accepted via the Summer Pool by a College other than their offering College.
    • The source data for these graphs was last refreshed 20 June 2022.
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