International students are not eligible for the foundation year courses.

International students can apply for direct entry to our undergraduate courses and there is extensive information on our website at ox.ac.uk/study about the university and the application process, which we hope will be helpful. For more information about courses available at the university please see A-Z of courses.

You can also find advice about applying as an international student at Guidance for international students including information about whether the university will accept your international qualifications and what grades you would be expected to achieve.

Category 2 of our eligibility criteria states that students should attend, normally for all secondary education, non-selective state-funded schools. Therefore applicants who have studied at an independent school/college at any point in their education (including those on scholarships) would not be eligible to apply. 

If you wish to apply to an undergraduate degree directly without a foundation year there is lots of information available on our undergraduate website about the entry requirements and application process.

Category 2 of our eligibility criteria states that students should attend, normally for all secondary education, non-selective state-funded schools. Therefore applicants from selective or grammar schools would not be eligible to apply unless they are care experienced and meet Category 4 of our eligibility criteria.  

If you wish to apply to an undergraduate degree directly without a foundation year there is lots of information available on our undergraduate website about the entry requirements and application process.

Oxford does sometimes accept applications from students who are currently studying at another university, however please bear in mind that this is a foundation year course pitched at a level of pre-university study. Your full academic record would be taken into account in your application, including your A-levels (or other equivalent qualifications) and study at university level, so we would need evidence of your performance on your university course. 

If you wish to apply to an undergraduate degree course directly without a foundation year, please note that you will need to complete the full application process, including submitting any written work and interviews, required for your chosen course. For full details, please see our apply pages. 

Please be aware that you would need to inform the other institution of this application and they would have to agree to “release” you. If possible, your reference should come from one of the academic staff at your current university.  
We suggest that you also look into the financial implications of this option as it would involve an extra year of undergraduate study.  
Another option might be to complete your current undergraduate degree and then consider applying to Oxford for a graduate course.

Mature applicants may be eligible to apply for the Astrophoria Foundation Year.

Competition for places at Oxford is very strong. For students who have followed the traditional A-level route we are normally looking for a level of attainment of at least grades BBB for entry into the foundation year courses. However, we do understand that people often develop their academic interests and skills later in life, and the advantage of the Oxford admissions process is that each individual application is scrutinised carefully by our academic teaching staff.  
However, in order to be competitive, it is necessary to demonstrate recent academic achievement, so you need to have been studying an academic course within the past three years. This might be A-levels, or it could be an Access to Higher Education qualification, Open University course, or similar. You can find the full details of what we accept on our Astrophoria Foundation Year webpages. 

Whatever course of study you pursue before Oxford, your application is made in exactly the same way as school leavers and assessed on the same academic criteria. For details of each of our courses and their entrance criteria please see our Astrophoria Foundation Year webpages. Some will require you to have studied particular subjects before (for example, Mathematics and Physics are required to study Engineering).  

Predicted grades for any qualifications not yet completed by any candidate applying as an individual, rather than through a UCAS-registered school or college, should be included in the academic reference on the UCAS application form. We also can’t consider an application without a reference, so you need to make sure that you ask someone who can comment on your academic ability and potential to write one for you. If you don’t have a reference, your application will be incomplete and we won’t be able to consider it. Normally your referee should be a teacher or tutor at your current or most recent place of education; it should not be a friend or family member. Do make sure to approach your referee in plenty of time – there is lots of guidance for them on how to write a reference for UCAS on our advice for teachers page.

An asylum seeker is considered to be someone who is in the process of seeking asylum, or the decision is still pending. Usually your fee status is classed as ‘overseas’* and you would not be eligible to apply for student finance. Therefore because asylum seekers would likely not be eligible for ‘home’* fees student finance support for an undergraduate degree at Oxford or other university they are not eligible to apply for a foundation year course.

If your status changes in advance of your application and you are defined as a refugee or are granted humanitarian protection you would meet the eligibility in section 3 of the eligibility criteria.

* Fee status is defined by UK government regulations. More information can be found on the UK Council for International Students' (UKCISA) website.

Please email the Foundation Year Team at admissions@foundationyear.ox.ac.uk with details of the qualification that you are taking.


We take a holistic view of the eligible applications we receive for the Astrophoria Foundation Year programme. Grades are just one part of an application we consider alongside the personal statement, academic reference, personal circumstances, performance at interviews (for those invited) and written exercises (where applicable).

The Astrophoria Foundation Year is for UK state school students who have experienced disadvantage or disruption during their education which means they are unlikely to achieve the grades required to make a competitive application for direct undergraduate entry into their chosen course at the University of Oxford.

If you meet the eligibility requirements for the Astrophoria Foundation Year, you may wish to apply for a foundation year course when the grades you are likely to achieve fall below the academic entry requirements for your chosen undergraduate course but they meet or exceed the academic entry requirements for your chosen foundation year course.

Find out more about the academic entry requirements for foundation year and undergraduate courses on the University of Oxford course pages.

No, it is not possible to apply for an undergraduate degree course at Oxford both with and without the foundation year in the same UCAS cycle. 

Please read the foundation year course page and the undergraduate course page to decide which would be the best course for you.

You can’t apply to Oxford and Cambridge in the same year, this applies to any combination of foundation year and undergraduate courses. Please see the foundation year course pages and the undergraduate course pages at each university to decide which would be the best course for you.

If the Astrophoria Foundation Year does not offer a course in your subject, you may like to look at the UCAS website for details of UK institutions that do offer foundation year courses in this subject.  

If you wish to apply for one of our undergraduate degrees directly without a foundation year, there is lots of information available on our course pages about the courses on offer, entry requirements and application process. 

Please visit the Astrophoria Foundation Year courses page for more information about the foundation year courses we offer.

You are not required to register to take admissions tests for entry to the foundation year. There may be a test as part of your interview process, but this does not require separate registration. 

Since you have applied for the foundation year, rather than direct undergraduate entry, you will enter the foundation year programme if you take up the offer from the University of Oxford.  During the application process you will have been selected because Oxford tutors believe you will benefit from taking the foundation year course.

The Astrophoria Foundation Year programme does not admit students for deferred entry. All applications received will be considered for admission at the next point of entry.

Astrophoria Foundation Year questions answered