Cambridge University Requirements for Engineering

Most schools require that applicants have a minimum GPA of 3.0. They will be more relaxed about those whose GPA doesn’t exceed the national or even state average. They might also check the average GPA accepted students have. I wonder about Cambridge University.

If so, then you need not worry any longer since the article below offers you the latest information on Cambridge university requirements for engineering, Cambridge university admission requirements for international students, Cambridge engineering entrance exam, engineering A level requirements, Cambridge university courses and Cambridge engineering modules. You will also find related articles on Cambridge university requirements for engineering in related articles on Collegelearners.

The only absolute requirements to study Engineering in Cambridge are Maths and Physics at A-Level (or equivalent in other systems). If you have a choice of topics within your Maths (and/or Further Maths) course, you will find mechanics and pure mathematics most immediately relevant to our Engineering course.

The university comprises 29 undergraduate colleges with about 25.7% of its undergraduate students coming from outside the U.K. Offering more than 65 subjects, there are a variety of undergraduate courses offered by the University of Cambridge. The most coveted programs are Engineering, Management, Medicine, Education, and Sciences.

Application Portal: UCAS Application Portal

Application Fees: 18.00 GBP (Single Course) and 24.00 GBP (Multiple Courses)

Application Deadline: October 15

Admission Process for University of Cambridge UG Courses

  • Submit a UCAS application. Following are the requirements for a successful submission: 
    • Write a personal statement explaining the subject interest
    • School reference provided a teacher/tutor/guidance counselor
  • Submit Cambridge Online Preliminary Application (COPA)
  • Complete the Supplementary Application Questionnaire (SAQ) sent by the University of Cambridge after submission of UCAS. 
  • Submit the academic transcripts, as per the course’s requirements.
  • Most applicants need to take a subject-specific written admission assessment, either pre-interview or at an interview.
  • A reasonable standard in spoken English is required at the time of the interview.

Quick Fact: SOP or Personal Statement for the UK differs a lot from other SOPs. These also differ from the subject you are applying for.

Admission Requirements for Indian Students

Students of Class 12 are considered qualified enough to apply for undergraduate programs at the University of Cambridge. The coursework is extremely demanding and you’re supposed to fulfil many requirements if you’re an Indian applicant:

  • A 4-years professional bachelor’s degree in professional subjects (For PG Courses)
  • The overall grade of 70% or CGPA of 7.3% and more from a recognized university 

Following are the minimum grades required in at least five relevant subjects in different boards:

  • CISCE and NIOS: 90%  
  • CBSE: A1
  • State Board: 95%

In addition to the completion of Class 12th with minimum grades, Indian students have to satisfy the following additional criteria depending upon the program to which they are applying for:

  • Chemical Engineering, Engineering, Natural Sciences (Physical): Rank above 2000 in IIT- JEE (Advanced)
  • Computer Science, Economics, Mathematics: STEP (minimum grade requirement varies with college)
  • All other programs: College Board Advanced Placement Test with grade 5 in more than five tests

Admission Requirements for Other Country Students

One of the following qualifications or their equivalent is considered for admission at the University of Cambridge: 

  • GCSE:- GCSE results are considered as a performance indicator of the candidate.
  • A-Levels: Applicants may be required to achieve A* in a particular subject(s), depending on individual circumstances.
  • International Baccalaureate Diploma (IB):- Typical offers are 40-42 points out of 45, with 776 in Higher Level subjects. Applicants may be required to achieve 7 in a particular subject(s), depending on individual circumstances.
  • Cambridge Pre-U Diploma:- Conditional offers are set on an individual basis but are likely to require the achievement of Distinction level grades (D2 or D3) in Principal Subjects.

English Proficiency Requirements for International Students

Since the medium of instruction is English at the University of Cambridge, non-native English speaker candidates must achieve any one of the formal qualifications given below:-

TestsMinimum Requirements
IELTS Academic7.5 overall, with each component minimum of 7.0
TOEFL (iBT)110, with each section 25 minimum
Cambridge English: C2 Proficiency200
Cambridge English: C1 Advanced193

Cambridge University Admission Requirements for International Students

University of Cambridge

The standard candidate at Cambridge is expected to achieve A*A*A or A*AA (subject dependent) or 40-42 in the International Baccalaureate, with 776 in Higher Level subjects. Applicants may be required to achieve 7 in a particular subject, depending on individual circumstances.

A-Level Requirements for Engineering at Cambridge

Admission to the Engineering course at Cambridge is highly competitive, both in terms of the numbers and quality of applicants. In considering applicants, Colleges look for evidence both of academic ability and of motivation towards Engineering. There are no absolute standards required of A-Level achievement, but it should be noted that the average entrant to the Department has three A* grades.

The standard minimum A Level offer for engineering is A*A*A but Colleges can and will make different offers, occasionally including offers on 4 A-Levels depending on an applicant’s individual circumstances.

Although academic requirements are expressed here in terms of A-Levels, equivalent qualifications in another school, national and international examinations are acceptable to all Colleges and offers of places are regularly made to applicants sitting such examinations. Some equivalences are given in the Other Examination Systems section below.

If you are taking examinations other than A-Levels or the ones detailed in the Other Examination Systems section below, you should check our Country-specific Information to establish whether the qualifications you are taking are acceptable. If you have further questions about the acceptability of your qualifications, contact the Cambridge Admissions Office.

There are three Colleges (Hughes Hall,  St Edmund’s and Wolfson) that admit only mature students (those over the age of 21). These Colleges tend to be more flexible about admissions requirements, so unconventional educational profiles are not necessarily discounted. They aim to make a careful assessment to ensure that the mathematical ability and vocational goals of their applicants give them the opportunity to do well in the Engineering Tripos. 


The only absolute requirements to study Engineering in Cambridge are Maths and Physics at A-Level (or equivalent in other systems). If you have a choice of topics within your Maths (and/or Further Maths) course, you will find mechanics and pure mathematics most immediately relevant to our Engineering course.

Taking STEP papers is not normally required to study Engineering in Cambridge, STEP I was previously routinely requested by Christ’s College and Peterhouse. With the recent end of the STEP I paper, Christ’s College no longer uses STEP in this way. Please see the Peterhouse subject web pages for up to date information on their approach to this change.

Chemistry is also required for admission to read Chemical Engineering via the Engineering route. (There is an alternative route to Chemical Engineering via Natural Sciences.)

Maths for Engineering: Notes for School Teachers gives the advice to help applicants choose a suitable A-Level Maths course and options within that course.

Third A Levels and Further Maths

All Colleges strongly prefer applicants for Engineering to be taking a third subject that is relevant to Engineering. If your school or college is able to offer Further Maths or you can access it through the Further Mathematics Support Programme, you are very strongly encouraged to study this. Other suitable subjects for your third A-Level include (in alphabetical order) Chemistry, Computing, Design Technology, and Electronics.

If you realise only at the end of Y12 that you would like to pursue Engineering at Cambridge we very strongly recommend that you take AS Further Maths in Y13 if possible.

Fourth A Levels

There is no requirement to offer more than three A-Levels, and it is recognised that not all schools are able to accommodate students taking four A Levels. Excelling in three A Levels relevant to Engineering is almost always preferable to performing well but not as high in more than three A Levels.

It is worth noting, however, that there is a high level of synergy between Maths, Further Maths and Physics. This means that, for students who are taking this combination, offering a fourth A Level allows an applicant to demonstrate both high achievement in Maths and the ability to cope with a demanding workload.

Vocational Qualifications 

T-Levels are not considered appropriate preparation for the Cambridge Engineering degree and are therefore not accepted for entry. Applicants with a mix of qualifications should contact a College admissions office for advice.

All Colleges, except Trinity College, welcome applications from students taking A Level Mathematics and a suitable vocational qualification, e.g. a BTEC Higher National Diploma, in an engineering discipline. Applicants are expected to achieve the highest possible grades in A Level Mathematics and vocational qualification. Those taking the Single Award Applied A Level in Engineering or the Principle Learning components of the Advanced Diploma in Engineering must also be taking A-Levels in Mathematics and Physics.

You are encouraged to discuss the suitability of your qualifications at an early stage with the admissions office of the College you intend to apply to.

Other Examinations Systems

For students studying in the Scottish system, Advanced Highers can be regarded as equivalent to A Levels and Highers as equivalent to AS Levels for the purposes of our academic requirements.

For students studying the International Baccalaureate, Higher Level subjects can be regarded as equivalent to A Levels and Standard Level subjects as equivalent to AS Levels for the purposes of our academic requirements. Consequently, IB students must offer Maths and Physics at Higher Level, and the Maths course should be Analysis and Approaches. The standard IB offer is 41-42 points overall with 7,7,7 or 7,7,6 at HL.

For students studying the Cambridge Pre-U, Principal Subjects can be regarded as equivalent to A Levels for the purposes of our academic requirements.

Information on typical offer levels in these and other examination systems can be found in the Entrance Requirements section of the University’s Undergraduate Study website.

Information on typical offer levels in international qualifications can be found in the Country-specific Information section of the University’s Undergraduate Study website.

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