Oxbridge is the collective name given to the colleges that form the universities of Oxford and Cambridge, which are regarded as the oldest and most famous higher education institutions in the UK. They also appear highly in UK and international rankings of leading universities.
Oxford has 30 undergraduate colleges, while Cambridge has 29. Each college differs in size, population and location. Some are single-sex colleges and others are mixed.
The Oxford law and Cambridge law faculties are highly regarded across the legal profession. They consistently rank as the top universities for law across academic league tables worldwide. Employers across the legal sector view candidates from Oxford and Cambridge favourably because of their reputation for producing high calibre law graduates.
While most universities operate a lecture and seminar teaching system for law degrees, Oxford law and Cambridge law faculties adopt a tutorial system. The tutorial system means that, in addition to lectures and seminars, students are taught in much smaller ‘tutorial’ groups, meaning that the academic experience is much more personal.
The standards set by Oxford and Cambridge legal study programmes makes them an attractive place to study for law student hopefuls all over the world. Offering exceptional LLB and LLM courses in law and highly qualified lecturers, completing a law degree at Oxford or Cambridge will increase your potential for employment among top law firms.
>> If you want to know more about what it’s like to study at Oxford, read our expert insight: Studying at Oxford Law School.
>> If you’re considering Cambridge to study law, read our expert insight: Studying at Cambridge Law School.
Oxford and Cambridge offer a range of undergraduate and postgraduate law courses.
The Cambridge law undergraduate course offers the opportunity to participate in their Erasmus+ programme, which allows you to study law in France, Germany, the Netherlands or Spain for a year.
Oxford’s BA in Law with European Law course allows you to study law abroad at one of Oxford’s partner universities in France, Germany, Italy, Spain or the Netherlands.
While many UK universities may offer you a conditional offer based on specific skills, extracurricular talents or work experience, Oxford and Cambridge place a high emphasis on your academic ability.
To secure a conditional offer for an undergraduate law course at Oxford, you will need a minimum of three A grades at A-Level, or 38 (including core points) with 666 at Higher Level in the International Baccalaureate. You will also need to sit the LNAT exam. You can prepare for the LNAT by using our free, online LNAT Practice Test.
The entry requirements for an undergraduate law course at Cambridge include a minimum of one A* grade at A-Level and two additional A grades, or 40 – 42 points, with 776 at Higher Level in the International Baccalaureate.
In previous years, you would have had to sit the Cambridge Law Test as an additional entry requirement to study law. However, as of Cambridge University’s Autumn 2022 admissions cycle for 2023 entry, BA Law applicants will no longer be required to take the Cambridge Law Test. Instead, all applicants will be required to sit the LNAT.
To apply for an undergraduate law course at Oxbridge, you have to choose between studying at the University of Oxford or the University of Cambridge. You can’t apply to both in the same year.
You will need to submit your application through UCAS before the deadline, which is usually in October for both Oxford and Cambridge. To support your UCAS application, you will need to provide an attention grabbing personal statement to make yourself stand out in the eyes of admissions tutors.
If you are applying for a postgraduate course, the application process is different. Rather than applying through UCAS, you will need to apply directly to either Oxford or Cambridge, but be aware that application deadlines may vary between courses.
If you make it to the interview stage at Oxford or Cambridge, you will be invited to attend one, two or more interviews at your chosen college. This is your chance to shine and add strength to your UCAS application and personal statement by demonstrating your motivation and commitment to the legal profession in person, while also showing your skills and aptitude for law.
For law degree interviews, you don’t need to have prior legal knowledge, but your ability to think critically will be under observation. The purpose of the interview process at Oxbridge is to see how you approach problems, not to determine whether answers that you give are right or wrong. There are usually no right or wrong answers to the questions asked by interviewers.
Instead, your thinking process will be assessed. You can think aloud, and talk your interviewers through your considerations and conclusions.
As part of the process, you might be asked to sit a written exam on the day of your interview, which could be a theoretical legal essay or a problem solving question.
Using Oxford University’s interview process as an example, here’s a typical question that you could be asked as part of a written exam, taken from St Anne’s College:
Should it be illegal to run a red light in the middle of the night on an empty road?
What is your view and why?
Oxbridge interview questions tend to replicate the style of question asked in a tutorial. Oxford and Cambridge both adopt a tutorial teaching system, so interview questions are designed to assess whether you are suited to their tutorial system. Tutors want to know how you think and whether you would learn well in their educational environment.
Oxford University has a dedicated Student Support Fund available to assist UK students who may need financial support based on a range of circumstances. If you have a financial shortfall or you need to meet additional exceptional costs once you have started your law course, you can apply for non-repayable supplementary funding.
There are also a small number of centrally administered scholarships available for undergraduates, including:
You will need to check the University of Oxford website for eligibility criteria and deadlines to apply for funding.
Cambridge University has a dedicated, non-repayable Bursary Scheme for UK undergraduates. Bursaries of up to £3,500 are available to students with a household income of up to £62,215. Students with lower household incomes will receive more.
Funding is also available from:
You will need to check the University of Cambridge website for eligibility criteria and deadlines to apply for funding.
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