Student ambassador with his arms outstretched
A Student Ambassador leading a college tour on an Open Day.

For students

On this page you’ll find opportunities which you can apply for directly as a prospective student.

Oxford for East England organise a wide range of events, activities and programmes every year, both in Oxford and in your region, offering you the chance to experience university life and receive expert advice on your future options.

Some other activities, such as those run in schools and the Oxbridge Student Conferences, need to be organised through your teacher – please ask them if they can organise a visit or know of any upcoming events you can attend.

There are also lots of resources available online, including information and advice about university as well as super-curricular activities to stretch and challenge you outside the classroom. Find out more on our Online Resources page.

Please note that in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, the University has suspended face-to-face outreach activities. As a result we have been developing digital outreach experiences, including our Springboard videosdigital resource hub and Virtual Open Days. The information below explains what we would usually offer for in-person programmes. For information on our digital outreach please see our Online Resources page.

Open Days | UNIQ Oxford | Balliol Subject Taster Days | Wadham Summer Schools: Biology & Human Sciences / Classics / Modern Foreign Languages | Floreat: Humanities Access Programme | Unsung Heroes of Science: video competition | Target Oxbridge | Target Schools | Independent visits | UCAS Exhibitions | Undergraduate Admissions and Outreach Newsletter

Open Days

Who for: Students (Y11-13), Teachers, Families  |  When: June/July and September  |  Where: Oxford & online

The University holds three Open Days, two in June or July and one in September, each year. All colleges and departments are open for prospective students to visit and there's plenty of opportunity to ask questions. While you do not need to apply to visit us on an Open Day, sessions in some academic departments will require you to register in advance.

Find out information about what the Oxford for East England colleges have to offer here: Balliol College, Hertford College, Wadham College

Open Day visitors mingling on a lawn.

UNIQ Oxford

Who for: Students (Y12)  |  When: Spring / Summer (applications earlier)  |  Where: Oxford & online

UNIQ is the largest University of Oxford residential access programme. It is for students in their first year of further education (Year 12 or equivalent) who are based at a UK state school or college. UNIQ has a record of helping students make successful applications to Oxford - in 2019 alone, 250 UNIQ students were made offers by the University.

Students apply to UNIQ between December and January and can be selected for either UNIQ Digital or the UNIQ residential. UNIQ Digital provides comprehensive information and guidance on the university admissions process, and aims to give a realistic view of Oxford student life through videos, activities and quizzes. The platform offers a range of forums where you can discuss both academic and social topics. 

UNIQ residentials take place in Spring and Summer and give students a taste of the Oxford student experience. Students live in an Oxford college for a week, attend lectures and seminars in your chosen subject area, and receive expert advice on the Oxford application and interview process.  UNIQ is free of charge and travel costs are also covered.

Due to Covid-19, in 2020 and 2021 alternative arrangements were set in place to deliver an online version of the UNIQ residential course, including a challenging academic programme.

UNIQ students with balloons

Balliol Subject Taster Days

Who for: Students (Y12)  |  When: Summer  |  Where: Oxford & online

These events organised by Balliol College are for Year 12s considering applying to Oxford and offer the opportunity to experience academic taster sessions and receive advice about interviews and the admissions process.

Balliol College logo

Next Steps Essex: Oxford & Cambridge webinars

Who for: Students (Y11-12)  |  When: October to May  |  Where: Online

Organised in collaboration with Emmanuel College, Cambridge, Next Steps Essex is a webinar series which equips Year 11 and 12 students from Essex with the tools to make a competitive application to Oxford and Cambridge.

Sign up on the Hertford College website.

Next Steps Essex on navy and teal background

Wadham Summer Schools: Biology & Human Sciences / Classics / Modern Foreign Languages

Who for: Students (Y12)  |  When: August (applications February-May)  |  Where: Oxford

Wadham College’s three Summer Schools give students realistic, first-hand insights into university life, providing intensive academic training in a chosen subject, and guidance on preparing strong university applications. Participants attend seminars, workshops / language classes, lectures, and participate in social activities with undergraduate mentors.

Wadham College logo

Floreat: Humanities Access Programme

Who for: Students (Y12) from Hertfordshire, Norfolk, Suffolk  |  When: February to August  |  Where: Oxford & Hertfordshire

Balliol College’s Floreat programme is offered to Year 12 students from state schools in the college’s link regions. The programme offers the opportunity to engage with Oxford-style humanities teaching through after-school academic seminars and a 3-day residential summer school in Oxford.

Balliol College logo

Unsung Heroes of Science: video competition

Who for: Students (Y11-13)  |  When: Spring  |  Where: Online

Hertford College’s Unsung Heroes of Science video competition challenges you to create a short video celebrating a scientist who deserves wider recognition. Shortlisted teams attend a celebration day in Oxford and get their creations highlighted on YouTube - previous entries have been viewed almost 100,000 times!

Unsung Heroes of Science logo

Target Oxbridge

Who for: Students (Y12) from African/Caribbean backgrounds  |  When: Year-round  |  Where: Online, Oxford & Cambridge

Target Oxbridge is a free programme that aims to help black African and Caribbean students and students of mixed heritage with black African and Caribbean heritage increase their chances of getting into the Universities of Oxford or Cambridge (known collectively as Oxbridge).

The programme includes a residential in Oxford, student mentoring by black or minority ethnic Oxbridge graduates as well as many tailored sessions throughout the year. Since launching in 2012, Target Oxbridge has helped 81 students to secure Oxbridge offers.

Target Oxbridge logo

Target Schools

Who for: Students (Y12)  |  When: Year-round  |  Where: Oxford & online

Target Schools is Oxford Student Union’s flagship access programme. Run by a student committee, they offer Year 12 students the chance to come to Oxford for a day and shadow an undergraduate student. This includes everything from attending lectures, having a tour around the city, to having lunch in one of the college dining halls.

This is completely free and Target Schools can also offer a limited number of travel grants to those who would otherwise be unable to afford the journey. These events run several times every Oxford term.

Target Schools logo

Independent visits

Who for: Students, Teachers, Families  |  When: Year-round  |  Where: Oxford & online

You’re welcome to visit Oxford independently at any time by going to see the colleges during their opening hours. When you arrive at a college entrance (known as a Porters’ Lodge) inform the people there that you are a prospective applicant and they should allow you to enter for free. Please check each college website for their visiting hours before your visit and feel free to email us in advance.

You can find advice for your visit here: Independent Visit Advice

If you’re unable to visit Oxford in person, there are plenty of online alternatives, including:

Please note that in-person visits are not currently possible due to Covid-19.

Tour group looking at window

UCAS Exhibitions

Who for: Students (Y10-13), Teachers, Families  |  When: Year-round  |  Where: Your region

Higher education exhibitions enable you to meet university representatives and industry professionals. These free events allow you to find out about a wide range universities and courses. You can also pick up copies of prospectuses and attend talks about student finance.

Find your nearest UCAS Exhibition and make sure to come and speak to us at the Oxford University stand.

Undergraduate Admissions and Outreach Newsletter

Who for: Students, Families

Keep up-to-date with all the latest news on undergraduate admissions, events and other opportunities from Oxford University. Sign up here: Undergraduate Admissions and Outreach Newsletter