Ethnicity

This page sets out what is known about the ethnicity of UK-domiciled applicants to Oxford. 4.7% of UK-domiciled applicants (2,010 students between 2019 and 2021) choose not to declare their ethnicity in their UCAS application. It is therefore not possible to make any statements in relation to their ethnicity and admissions status, and for that reason they have not been included in the tables below.

UK-domiciled Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) students include those who indicate in their UCAS application that they identify as Black (including African, Caribbean and other Black background), Asian (including Bangladeshi, Indian, Pakistani, Chinese and other Asian background), Mixed Heritage (including White & Asian, White & Black African, White & Black Caribbean and other Mixed background), Arab or any other ethnicity except White.

Context

The following graphics provide context for Oxford’s figures, showing the BME share of the England and Wales population, the A-level achievement of BME students, and the proportion of BME students in different parts of the UK university sector.

Note: Figures for the 2019/20 academic year (2019 intake) are the most recent available from HESA and have therefore been used in these graphics. The most recent figures available for Oxford are for the 2021/22 academic year (2021 intake).

England and Wales population now aged 19 to 25*

England and Wales population now aged 19 to 25*, White 80.6 %, BME 19.4%

Breakdown of students achieving AAA or better at A-level by ethnicity (all UK universities, 2019 UK intake)**

Bar chart showing: White 75.8% 25,040 students,  BME 24.2% 8,000 students made up from Asian 14.6% 4,830 students, Other including Mixed 7.0% 2,325 students and Black 2.5% 840 students.

Breakdown of students at UK universities by ethnicity (2019 UK intake)**

Bar chart showing: All UK universities - White students 71.3% and BME students 28.7%. Russell Group - White students 74.6% and BME students 25.4%. Russell Group outside London - White students 79.7% and BME students 20.3%.

Oxford University (2021 UK intake)***

Bar chart showing: Oxford University - White students 75.4% and BME students 24.6%.

*2011 UK census. Source: Office for National Statistics. Ethnicity data from the 2021 census has not yet been published.
**Most recent available national data covers 2019 intake: defined as first-year, first-degree, UK-domiciled undergraduate students, academic year 2019/20. AAA+ pool includes equivalent Scottish qualifications. See note on HESA data for full citation.
***Excluding students whose ethnicity status is not declared.

University-level data

BME students

  • The number of UK-domiciled BME applicants to Oxford has increased since 2017, as have the numbers of students receiving offers and being admitted.
  • The proportion of UK-domiciled students admitted to Oxford who indicate in their UCAS application that they identify as BME has risen from 17.8% in 2017 to 24.6% in 2021.

UK-domiciled BME students: applications to Oxford, offers made and students admitted, 2017–2021

 BME StudentsWhite Students 
 ApplicationsOffersAdmittedApplicationsOffersAdmittedBME proportion of total
UK students admitted
11
20214,2546706489,4082,0491,98724.6%
20204,0247066849,5092,2932,21423.6%
20193,5966695589,5832,3061,97822.0%
20183,0975514579,0482,3052,04518.3%
20172,8995194468,9212,3242,05717.8%

11. Excluding students whose ethnicity status is not declared.

Asian students

  • Since 2017, applications from UK-domiciled Asian students have been increasing annually, as have offers received and students admitted.
  • The proportion of UK-domiciled students admitted to Oxford who indicate in their UCAS application that they identify as Asian has risen from 8.2% in 2017 to 11.2% in 2021.

UK-domiciled Asian students: applications to Oxford, offers made and students admitted, 2017–2021

 ApplicationsOffersAdmittedProportion of total
UK students admitted
11
20212,25830829511.2%
20202,1352892779.6%
20191,9012792439.6%
20181,6872492088.3%
20171,5392412068.2%

11. Excluding students whose ethnicity status is not declared. 

Bar chart showing: Breakdown of students achieving AAA or better at A-level (all UK universities, 2019 UK intake)* - 85.4% White/other BME and 14.6% Asian. Breakdown of students at non-London Russell Group universities (2019 UK intake)* - 89.7% White/othe

*Most recent available national data covers 2019 intake: defined as first-year, first-degree, UK-domiciled undergraduate students, academic year 2019/20. AAA+ pool includes equivalent Scottish qualifications. See note on HESA data for full citation.

Bangladeshi and Pakistani students

  • Since 2017, the numbers of UK-domiciled Bangladeshi and Pakistani students applying to Oxford, being made offers and being admitted have risen substantially.
  • The proportion of UK-domiciled students admitted to Oxford who indicate in their UCAS application that they identify as Bangladeshi or Pakistani has risen from 1.7% in 2017 to 2.8% in 2021.

Note: Within the British Asian group, Bangladeshi and Pakistani students are considered underrepresented at highly selective universities, hence their inclusion as a separate group at University level in this report.

UK-domiciled Bangladeshi and Pakistani students: applications to Oxford, offers made and students admitted, 2017–2021

 ApplicationsOffersAdmittedProportion of total
UK students admitted
11
202163082752.8%
202061866592.0%
201953267532.1%
201844352411.6%
201738455431.7%

11. Excluding students whose ethnicity status is not declared. 

Bar chart showing: Breakdown of students achieving AAA or better at A-level (all UK universities, 2019 UK intake)* - 96.0% White/other BME and 3.9% Bangladeshi/Pakistani. Breakdown of students at non-London Russell Group universities (2019 UK intake)* - 9

*Most recent available national data covers 2019 intake: defined as first-year, first-degree, UK-domiciled undergraduate students, academic year 2019/20. AAA+ pool includes equivalent Scottish qualifications. See note on HESA data for full citation.

Students with Black African or Black Caribbean heritage12

  • The numbers of UK-domiciled students with Black African or Black Caribbean heritage applying to Oxford, receiving offers and being admitted have increased from 2017 to 2021.
  • The proportion of UK-domiciled students admitted to Oxford who indicate in their UCAS application that they identify as Black has risen from 1.9% in 2017 to 3.5% in 2020.

UK-domiciled students with Black African or Black Caribbean heritage: applications to Oxford, offers made and students admitted, 2017–2021

 ApplicationsOffersAdmittedProportion of total
UK students admitted
11
202159795923.5%
20205641091063.7%
2019498107803.2%
201842486652.6%
201739665481.9%

11. Excluding students whose ethnicity status is not declared. 

Bar chart showing: Breakdown of students achieving AAA or better at A-level (all UK universities, 2019 UK intake)* - 97.5% White/other BME and 2.5% Black. Breakdown of students at non-London Russell Group universities (2019 UK intake)* - 96.5% White/other

*Most recent available national data covers 2019 intake: defined as first-year, first-degree, UK-domiciled undergraduate students, academic year 2019/20. AAA+ pool includes equivalent Scottish qualifications. See note on HESA data for full citation.

Mixed Heritage students

  • The number of UK-domiciled Mixed Heritage applicants to Oxford has risen since 2017, as have the numbers of students receiving offers and being admitted.
  • The proportion of UK-domiciled students admitted to Oxford who indicate in their UCAS application that they identify as Mixed Heritage rose from 6.6% in 2017 to 8.2% in 2021.

UK-domiciled Mixed Heritage students: applications to Oxford, offers made and students admitted, 2017–2021

 ApplicationsOffersAdmittedProportion of total
UK students admitted
11
20211,1262232178.2%
20201,0532622568.8%
20199692472068.1%
20188161911626.5%
20177681801646.6%

11. Excluding students whose ethnicity status is not declared. 

Bar chart showing: Breakdown of students achieving AAA or better at A-level (all UK universities, 2019 UK intake)* - 94.5% White/other BME and 5.4% Mixed. Breakdown of students at non-London Russell Group universities (2019 UK intake)* - 94.7% White/other

*Most recent available national data covers 2019 intake: defined as first-year, first-degree, UK-domiciled undergraduate students, academic year 2019/20. AAA+ pool includes equivalent Scottish qualifications. See note on HESA data for full citation.

**National data does not include Mixed ethnicity as a separate category; it only provides ‘other including Mixed’ where ‘other’ includes all ethnicities that do not fall into any subcategories of White, Asian or Black ethnic groups.

For further information on all Oxford's admissions statistics, including by course and by college, please read the Annual Admissions Statistical Report.

You may also be interested to see detailed statistics relating to ethnicity.

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