skip to content

Postgraduate Study


For information on applying, please see How Do I Apply?

Q. How do I make an application to Cambridge?

Applications should be submitted via the applicant portal. 

Please note that this website deals with applications for postgraduate study only. If you have found this page from a search engine, and wish to apply for an undergraduate course at the University of Cambridge, see the Undergraduate Study website.

Q. Can I transfer to Cambridge from another institution?

If you have a begun a postgraduate course of study at another institution and wish to transfer to Cambridge you will need to submit an application for admission in the normal way, and your application will be subject the same academic assessment as other postgraduate applications. For information on how to apply see How do I apply section. In some circumstances, if you are transferring to Cambridge because your supervisor has taken up a post at the University of Cambridge, and you have received a formal offer of admission from the University after submitting an application, you may apply to be exempt from the University fee payment for up to 3 full-time or 5 part-time terms.

Q. What is the admissions process?

The application process is described in the How Do I Apply? section of the website.

After you have submitted your application with all the necessary supporting documents the admissions process begins.

Please read our pages on how the selection process works and who is involved, timescales for decisions and how offers are made and conditions need to be met.

Q. What is the word limit for answering questions on the Applicant Portal?

The Applicant Portal enforces limits on the number of characters, rather than words, which are allowed for your answers to the following questions:

Field in online form Character limit (including spaces)
Research Summary (Research)* 1,500
Research Experience (Research) 1,500
Career Goals (Other Information) 1,000
Additional information to support application (Other Information) 1,000
Funding opportunities identified (Funding Application) 1,000
Gates Cambridge Personal Statement (Funding Application) 3,000
Required adjustments (Adjustments) 1,000

* The research proposal field in the online form is separate from a more detailed research proposal supporting document you may be required to upload, the length of which will vary depending on the course.

Please note that character limits for responses to "Course Specific Questions", if applicable, may vary.

Q. Is there an application fee?

Some courses are subject to an application charge, generally these are the master level courses. Applications for doctoral courses (eg PhDs) do not have an application fee charge.

To find out whether your course carries an application charge, see the Application Fee page for more information.

Q. Can the application fee be waived in special cases?

If you require further information about our application fee waivers, please go to our application fee page.

For details on how to apply for a refund of the application fee see the terms and conditions.

Q. How should I fill in the Legal Name section of the application form?

We recognise that naming customs across the world vary. However, the University holds your names in a set format, which is the same as that used by UK Visas and Immigration.

Please note that the application form accepts only a limited character set, so accented characters and other diacritics must be converted.

To help you enter your names in the required format, listed below are a number of examples:

Example full name
Where and how to enter the names in the application form

First Name
Other Name
Last Name

Juan De la Cruz Gómez
De la Cruz Gomez

Thomas Ralph Edwin Scott
Ralph Edwin

Sārah Reza Ur Rahim
Reza Ur Rahim

Chia Benny Choon Ming
Choon Ming

Yeo Wei Ming
(Yang Wenbin)*

* The system does not allow you to enter alternative names (as in the last example.) Therefore, please do not try to enter these additional names here.

Q. Can I start an application one day and come back to it another day?

Yes. We recommend you begin your application as early as possible. Your unsubmitted application will only be deleted once the closing date for the course has passed.

Q. Can I obtain a copy of my application form?

It is only possible to download a copy of your application form before you submit it. You can do this from the dashboard of the Applicant Portal.

If you did not save your application form using the above method, and later find that you need to submit a copy when applying for funding, please use our contact form to request that we send you a copy. For College scholarships, we can forward a copy on your behalf.

Q. Will I have to travel to Cambridge for an interview?

Most departments or faculties will wish to interview you if your application is accepted to the next stage in the admissions process. Some studentships and scholarships will also invite shortlisted candidates for interviews.

However, most interviews will be conducted via video conferencing or telephone.

Q. My course will involve contact with vulnerable groups. What checks will be required?

The department responsible for your course will determine whether to a check from the Disclosure and Barring Service will be required as a condition of your offer. Please see the DBS Checks and DBS FAQs pages for details.