Changes to the running of admissions tests for 2021-entry | University of Oxford

Changes to the running of admissions tests for 2021-entry

Due to the ongoing uncertain situation due to COVID-19 and restrictions all over the world, we have had to make some limited changes to how some of our tests will run this year. 

Candidates are expected to register for tests and sit them in test centres as planned, except in the most exceptional circumstances. 

We are aware that many are being affected by new lockdown restrictions.  In particular, the new lockdown in England which begins on 5 November, and the Welsh firebreak.  However, schools and other educational institutions are expected to remain open and we have been assured that the admissions tests will go ahead in UK test centres as normal on 4 and 5 November.  Please contact us at  if you have any questions.

What if I can't take my subject's admissions test due to COVID-19 restrictions?

  • We expect almost all candidates to take tests at test centres as they usually would.
  • If you have not managed to register for your test, you have now missed the deadline.
  • If you have successfully registered for your test by the deadline, you should have received information on what action you need to take if your circumstances change in the days running up to test day. 
  • Candidates unable to attend a test centre who were eligible to take their test remotely have now been contacted and given full instructions.
When do the tests take place?
  • Please see our test timetable for start and finish times.
  • The BMAT, CAT, ELAT, MAT, MLAT, OLAT and Philosophy test will take place on Wednesday 4 November.
  • The test date for the HAT, TSA and PAT has been moved to Thursday 5 November to facilitate adherence to local social distancing measures. 
    • Students applying for the following courses will now sit these tests on 5 November:  
      - Economics and Management
      - Engineering Science
      - Experimental Psychology
      - History
      - History (Ancient and Modern)
      - History and Economics - both the HAT and TSA (Section 1) will be sat on Thursday 5 November
      - History and English 
      - History and Modern Languages - please note, the MLAT will take place on Wednesday 4 November, so you will be required to take the HAT and the MLAT on separate days
      - History and Politics
      - Human Sciences
      - Materials Science
      - Physics
      - Physics and Philosophy
      - PPE
      - PPL

Are there any changes to the tests required or to the format of tests?

  • The TSA will be a computer-based test this year. There is no other change to the format of the test. Details are available here

  • The BMAT will be a computer-based test this year. There is no other change to the format of the test. Details are available here. Note that candidates sitting the BMAT in Thailand or at the Lee Kong Chian School of Medicine in Singapore will take a paper-based test.

  • The Geography Admissions Test is suspended for 2021 entry. Candidates applying for Geography do not need to sit any admissions test. Their applications will be considered on the basis of the other information making up their application. See selection criteria.

What if there's a problem at my test centre or I fall ill on the day of the test?

  • Candidates who are affected by unexpected issues on the day of the tests, for example due to temporary injury/illness or problems with the administration of the test, should read the guidance about special consideration and, if this applies to you, submit the special consideration form within five working days of the test date.
  • If you are taking the test remotely (i.e. not at a test centre) and you are not taking the BMAT or TSA, please follow the advice provided in the guidance and FAQs you have been given.
Who can I contact about...?
  • Questions about your registration, taking the test on the day, centre availability or about TSA and BMAT should be directed to our partners who run these tests at Cambridge Assessment Admissions Testing using this support form (24 hours) or Mon-Fri 0830-1700 (BST) by phone +44 (0)1223 553366.

  • Questions about how Oxford will consider your application should be directed to Please include your UCAS ID number and, if possible, your candidate test entry number with your enquiry.