Anglo-Saxon, Norse, And Celtic @ Newnham, Cambridge in 2016

Interview format

2x interviews

Interview content

Interview 1: source-based discussion; Interview 2: source-based discussion

Best preparation


Advice in hindsight


Final thoughts

Listen closely to your interviewers; don't rush

Remember this advice isn't official. There is no guarantee it will reflect your experience because university applications can change between years. Check the official Cambridge and Oxford websites for more accurate information on this year's application format and the required tests.

Also, someone else's experience may not reflect your own. Most interviews are more like conversations than tests and like, any conversation, they are quite interactive.

Interview Format

Test taken: None

Number of interviews: 2

Skype interview: no

Time between interviews: They were on the same day

Length of first interview: 40 minutes; Length of second interview: 40 minutes

What happened in your interview? How did you feel?

In one of my interviews they were three interviewers, and in the other, only one. I was fairly nervous to begin with. The second one definitely went better probably because I'd calmed down a little.

Mostly we just discussed sources: they presented a source, then asked me what I knew about it. After we'd discussed that they taught me a few further things of interest about that source. Two of the sources were historical extracts, and one was an archaeological find. It was just a bit of back-and-forth, where they could see what it might be like to teach me.

How did you prepare?


What advice do you have for future applicants?

Looking back, what advice would you give to your past self?

For the interview, you don't need practiced quotes or answers. If anything, that will take you out of a more helpful mindset.

Really listen to your interviewers, don't rush. Just think about the interview as a moment in time where you can learn something, and let them teach you.

Also, be really clear in your own mind about why you want to do this course. Not just in general about how good it is, but why you specifically want to do it.