Everything you need to know about applying to study BA Archaeology and Anthropology can be found on the main University admissions pages but if you can't find the right information please contact the Undergraduate Administrator directly.

To see which colleges offer this course click here.

We welcome applications from international students and equivalent requirements can be found here. Please note all non native English-speaking applicants (other than those who have educated in the medium of the English language during their two most recent years of study) must demonstrate that they are proficient in written and spoken English - click here for more information. 

The University and colleges view applications from students with disabilities on the same grounds as those from other candidates, which are assessed purely on academic merit and potential, according to the published selection criteria relevant to the course applied for. Click here to find out more.

Submission of written work

You will be required to submit two recent marked essays, each written (in English) as part of a school or college course within a two-week period or less, preferably in different subjects. You also have the option of submitting an additional piece of work composed over a longer period of time. 

You are also required to submit a short essay (written in English) of no more than 500 words in response to the following question: what can we learn about people, EITHER past OR present, from their material culture?

Note: if you have any difficulty about identifying suitable essay topics, or you would like to discuss submitting additional work please consult the relevant tutor at your chosen College well in advance of the submission deadline. If you have made an open application, then you should send your written work to the College to which you have been allocated. 

Interviews - what to expect

We are looking for how you think your way through problems, not for any specific knowledge and therefore no special preparation is required and there is no written test at interview.

Interviews will include the following components:

1. Discussion of a topic of your own choice connected with the degree (e.g. a book that you have read, an archaeological excavation in which you have participated).

2. You will be asked to read a short passage before the interview and will be asked questions on it during the interviews.

3. Discussion of artefacts, maps or written material which you will be asked to interpret.

Interviews are typically wide-ranging, giving us the opportunity to find out about you as a person, your interests and your potential and allowing you to ask us questions about the degree or Oxford life in general. Some of the qualities for which we are looking in selecting students are:

  • An ability to think independently
  • Potential
  • Motivation
  • Enthusiasm and interest
  • Commitment

If you are invited for interview you will normally be required to stay for around three days in early December. You will have at least one interview in your college of preference and at least one interview at another college.

Short-listing criteria

Tutors employ the following criteria: 1) A-level grades or equivalent (unless convincing extenuating circumstances can be demonstrated, AAA or 38-40 at IB is a minimum prediction/secured set of grades and candidates without this will not be summoned for interview); 2) submitted written work showing evidence of logical argument and analysis, as well as sufficient grasp of English to deal with the demands of an Oxford degree, the work being graded by Tutors from best to worst on a 5-1 scale; 3) a positive academic reference from someone acquainted with the candidate's academic background (this may be modified in the case of mature applicants); 4) a strong record of achievement, where relevant, in previous academic examinations, such as GCSE; 5) a personal statement that shows a convincing degree of enthusiasm and motivation for studying the subject. Candidates who meet these criteria are interviewed.