(photo of 2017 participants)

Selwyn College Year 12 Summer School 2018

Selwyn College is excited to announce our 2018 Selwyn College Summer School for Year 12 students (or equivalent e.g. S5), which will take place from Monday 2nd July  – Thursday 5th July. Students will stay for 3 nights at Selwyn College where accommodation and all meals will be provided for the duration of their stay.

The Summer School has been designed to challenge students academically and participants will have the opportunity to choose from a range of different subjects on offer. All lectures will be delivered by academic staff at Cambridge and will be designed to give participants an insight into what it is like to study at Cambridge and other top universities. Many of the courses/degree subjects that the University of Cambridge offers will be represented and a full programme of events will be circulated nearer the time.

As well as academic content, museum workshops and other subject-based sessions, participants will also experience life as a Cambridge student through a variety of social activities and by meeting current undergraduates who will act as mentors. The Summer School serves as an excellent opportunity to gain an insight into studying at top universities, receive help and support on applying to competitive universities, and meet peers from all over the UK.

See our poster!

Requirements for applicants:

  • Currently in Year 12 (or equivalent e.g. S5)
  • Achieved at least 7s or As in at least 5 subjects at GCSEs (or equivalent e.g. National 5)
  • Considering applying to the University of Cambridge or other top universities (e.g. Oxford and other Russell Group universities)

There are 80 places available for this Summer School but we anticipate high demand so we encourage students to apply soon. Students who are interested should apply online using the following application form:


The application form should be filled in by the applicant and will need to be completed in one sitting. Please note as part of the application, the applicant will be asked to write three supporting paragraphs which they may wish to prepare on a word processor in advance (maximum: 200 words for each question):

  1. Why do you want to come on the Summer School?
  2. Why would you be a good candidate for this Summer School?
  3. What are your future aspirations?

Past Summer Schools have been very competitive so we will be selecting applicants based on the information provided, prioritising those we believe would stand to gain the most from this experience and those who have a realistic chance of attending a highly selective university in the future. Unsuccessful applicants will be placed on a waiting list.

Beyond the above criteria, priority will be given to students who meet one or more of the following criteria:

  • Have no parental history of attending higher education
  • Live in neighbourhoods with low overall progression rates to higher education
  • Have lived, or are currently living, in local authority care
  • Have been eligible for free school meals within the past five years
  •  Are from a group or community currently underrepresented at Cambridge
  • Have caring responsibilities for a family member 
  • Have a disability 

The deadline for applications is Friday 13th April. All applicants will be contacted after this date regarding whether they have been successful in gaining a place on the Summer School and further information will be sent out to successful applicants.

2017 Summer School

If you would like to get a feel for what our summer schools are like, one student filmed her experience last year:


Testimonials from 2017:

 “It’s a truly amazing experience. The opportunity to meet people from other students at Cambridge to admission tutors, really helps to dismiss the idea of Cambridge being a mysterious place. I'm more confident in making an Oxbridge application, as the admissions process was extremely well explained by everyone, and the advice given was consistent (e.g. by Michelle, the student helpers, tutors). Thank you!” Wing

“I think it has been incredibly beneficial in helping me gain a better understanding about life in university. It has allowed me to realise the possibilities and options that are available through the lectures I attended. It has given me so much information that I can utilise for my application to universities, not just Cambridge. It has given me the opportunity to meet people that are experience the same challenges I am.” Lei

“I feel that I have made very good friends who will become an encouraging prospective Cambridge hopefuls support network. Every moment was genuinely amazing and incredibly surreal at times to actually be in the Cambridge University. I feel more motivated and understanding of how to become a serious Cambridge candidate in the following months. It’s also been immensely reassuring to meet real Cambridge students and professors who are just lovely, normal intelligent people. I can’t thank you enough for this opportunity! It was academically invigorating but also socially fun. Even if I don’t get into Cambridge I’ll be very grateful for the confidence in my academic ability that this course gave me.” Ada


Please direct any enquiries to schools-liaison@sel.cam.ac.uk