1. Oxbridge application process
  2. References and supporting documents
  3. Supporting documents for Oxbridge applications

Supporting Documents for Oxbridge Applications

Understanding the types of supporting documents required for an Oxbridge application and how to provide them effectively.

Supporting Documents for Oxbridge Applications

Applying to Oxford or Cambridge can be an intimidating process. It requires an in-depth understanding of the admissions process, a strong academic record, and a range of supporting documents to prove your worthiness as an applicant. In this article, we will explore the different types of supporting documents that are required for an Oxbridge application, and discuss how these documents can help your application stand out from the crowd. Oxbridge applications require a range of supporting documents, from personal statements and references to extra-curricular activities. In this article, we explain the types of documents that you need to provide, and how to make them as effective as possible.

Personal Statement: A personal statement is a key document in the Oxbridge application process. It should demonstrate your knowledge of the subject you are applying for and showcase your academic and personal qualities, interests and achievements. When writing your personal statement, make sure it is tailored towards your chosen course and university. Aim to include evidence of your research into the subject, any relevant work experience you have undertaken, as well as any extra-curricular activities or special interests.

Try to use specific examples to demonstrate why you are suitable for the course.


References are usually provided by teachers, employers or other professionals who can vouch for your skills and abilities. This is an important part of the application process, so make sure you pick referees who can speak highly about you and the work you have done. When selecting referees, consider who will be able to provide an accurate and comprehensive account of your skills and abilities.

Extra-Curricular Activities: While academic qualifications are important, it is also essential to demonstrate your extra-curricular activities. These can include anything from volunteering to taking part in a sport or musical activity. Include any relevant awards or achievements in this section, such as Duke of Edinburgh or sports team successes. Showing that you are actively involved in activities outside of school is a great way to demonstrate your passion and commitment.

CV/Resume: A CV or resume is typically requested by Oxbridge universities when applying for a course. This should include information about any previous education or experience relevant to the course you are applying for, as well as any other qualifications or awards achieved. Make sure that all information is up to date and accurate, and that the CV includes contact details for referees if applicable.

Academic Transcripts:

It is important to include academic transcripts with your application form, as this will provide evidence of your academic achievements.

This should include information about any qualifications achieved (such as GCSEs or A Levels) as well as grades achieved in exams and coursework.

Additional Criteria:

Some universities may require additional criteria for admission, such as an interview or aptitude test. Make sure you familiarise yourself with these criteria prior to submitting your application form. This will ensure that you are fully prepared for any additional requirements.

Additional Documents: Providing additional documents can be a great way to demonstrate your suitability for a course or university. For example, a portfolio of artwork or creative writing can help to show that you have the skills necessary for the course you are applying for. Additionally, any additional qualifications such as language certificates may be useful to provide in order to demonstrate your dedication and commitment to learning.

Personal Statement

Your personal statement is an important part of your Oxbridge application, and it's essential to make it as strong and compelling as possible. It should demonstrate your commitment to studying at a highly competitive university, as well as showcase your skills, knowledge, and experience. Your personal statement should include information about your academic background and achievements, as well as any extra-curricular activities and work experience that you have undertaken that are relevant to the course you are applying for.

It is also important to explain why you are particularly interested in the course, and why you feel that you would be a strong candidate for it. When crafting your personal statement, make sure to avoid clichés or overused phrases, such as “from a young age I have been fascinated by...”. Instead, focus on providing evidence for your statements and try to include specific examples of what you have achieved or experienced. Additionally, ensure that your statement is succinct and clear, and that it does not exceed the specified word limit.

Additional Documents

In addition to the documents outlined above, some Oxbridge applications may require additional supporting documents. This could include:Academic transcriptsAcademic transcripts are required for undergraduate and postgraduate applications.

These provide a detailed record of your academic performance and should include information about the modules you have taken and the grades you have achieved.

Letters of recommendation

Letters of recommendation are also highly recommended for Oxbridge applications. These provide an independent assessment of your academic and extra-curricular achievements, as well as your potential for success at Oxbridge. Recommendation letters should be written by someone who knows you well, such as a teacher, mentor or supervisor.


Your CV or resume should include information about your academic qualifications, professional experience, and any extra-curricular activities you’ve been involved in. It should also provide an overview of the key skills and attributes that you could bring to an Oxbridge course.


If you are applying for a course with an artistic or creative element, you may be asked to provide a portfolio of work.

This could include drawings, photographs or other pieces of artwork that demonstrate your creative flair.

Additional Criteria

In addition to the core requirements for Oxbridge applications, there are also additional criteria that may be taken into account. These may include extracurricular activities, awards, international experience, and any other evidence of a student’s interest in their chosen subject. It is important to make sure that all relevant information is included in the application, as it could make a significant difference to an applicant’s chances of success. Extracurricular activities are a great way to demonstrate a passion for a subject.

This could include anything from playing a musical instrument, to participating in a club or voluntary work. Any additional qualifications or awards can also be included, such as Duke of Edinburgh awards, or certificates from language courses. All of these activities will demonstrate an applicant’s commitment and dedication to their chosen subject. Having international experience can also be beneficial.

This could be in the form of travelling, studying abroad, or working in another country. This demonstrates an understanding of different cultures and values, as well as an openness to new experiences. It also shows an awareness of global issues and current affairs. Including any other evidence of a student’s interest in their chosen subject is also important.

This could be anything from reading books or journals related to the subject, attending lectures or seminars, or even taking part in online courses. These all show an applicant’s dedication and enthusiasm for their chosen subject.


References are an important part of the Oxbridge application process. References should be written by someone who knows you well and can provide evidence of your academic ability, potential, and character. It is important to select someone who can speak positively about your work ethic, attitude, and ability to contribute to the university environment. Typically, two references are required for Oxbridge applications.

It is important to select referees who have interacted with you in a professional capacity and can speak to your academic ability and potential. Some universities may require more than two references, so be sure to check the specific requirements of the university you are applying to. When writing references, it is important to include specific examples of how you have demonstrated certain qualities. This will help the admissions teams to get a better sense of you as a person and how you would fit into the university environment. Be sure to provide your referees with any relevant materials, such as coursework or essays, as this will help them to write a more comprehensive reference. It is also important to give your referees plenty of time to write your reference.

This should be done at least one month before the deadline for your application. It is also important to provide your referees with regular updates on the status of your applications. Submitting supporting documents is an essential part of the Oxbridge application process, and can be the difference between success and failure. Having a well-crafted personal statement, strong references, and a range of additional documents and criteria can help to make your application stand out. It’s important to start preparing early, as this will give you the best chance of success. We hope this article has provided you with a better understanding of what supporting documents are needed for an Oxbridge application.

Good luck!.

Joe Robbins
Joe Robbins

Joe Robbins is the esteemed Head of Consultancy at The Profs, an acclaimed education startup recognised for its innovative approach in the industry with several awards, including The Telegraph Trade Awards' Most Innovative SME Exporter 2018, and Education Investor’s Best Tutoring Company 2017. At The Profs, Robbins has been a pivotal figure, initially excelling in the Client Liaison team by generating over £1,000,000 in revenue. His remarkable contributions led to the establishment of The Profs Consultancy, a multiservice wing focusing on premium educational services such as admissions support to top-tier UK and US universities, educational mentoring, career application support, and tailored educational planning for discerning clients. Educationally, Robbins is a distinguished alumnus of King's College London, where he completed a Master of Science (MSc) in Security, Leadership, and Society, graduating with a Pass with Distinction. His academic achievements complement his professional expertise, making him a respected leader in the education sector. Joe Robbins continues to drive The Profs Consultancy with a commitment to excellence, shaping the future of education through innovative solutions and a deep understanding of the sector's evolving needs.

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