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Oxford MBA

Oxford MBA


How do I submit an application?

We only accept online applications through 'Apply Yourself', details of which can be found in the 'How To Apply' section of the website. Transcripts and other supporting documentation must be scanned and uploaded to the application form. Please note that the School’s form is different from the Graduate Application Form, used by the University of Oxford Graduate Admissions Office for other graduate-level courses.

When should I apply?

For the 2017 entry, there are six application stages and you can apply in any of these. However, you are advised to apply as early as possible. If your college choice and college accommodation is important to you, we recommend that you apply in the early stages (1-3).

I submitted my application before the deadline but I haven't received a confirmation. Does this mean you have not received it?

We receive most of the applications for each stage on, or just before, the deadline and, due to the volume, it may take five working days for us to notify you that we have received your application or to inform you of its status.

What does a typical MBA class look like at Oxford?

The diversity of nationalities, work experience and age range enhances the group dynamics and offers students a rich environment for learning from the course and each other. The 2016/17 MBA class comprises students from 58 countries. You can read our alumni profiles here.

Are there any age restrictions?

No. The average age of the current class is 28 and ranges from 21 to 40. Younger candidates need to be able to demonstrate a high level of maturity, combined with evidence of leadership ability. 

What is the structure of the MBA programme?

The programme lasts 12 months from September to September to the following year. It's divided in three terms plus a summer term. During the first term you will work on your core courses building the foundations of business. After this, you will be able to undertake project work combined with elective courses that will allow you to tailor your learning. Find out more about the programme structure.

What percentage of the class will be case study based?

The teaching on the MBA programme is split as follows: 40% lecture, 25% case study, 25% team project and 10% simulations.

I am studying for a Masters at another University. May I transfer to Saïd Business School for part of the year?

The MBA programme does not accept transfer, exchange or visitor students.

What GMAT score do you expect?

While we recommend that candidates apply with a GMAT score of 650 or above, we accept all scores. The average for the 2016/17 class is 692. A high score does not guarantee a place, nor does a low score disqualify you. It is important to remember that GMAT test scores are only one element of your application and you should not over-estimate their importance.

It is a mandatory requirement that all sections of the GMAT test is taken. We are unable to waive this admissions requirement in any circumstances.

Please ensure that the test scores are forwarded by GMAC to the Saïd Business School. GMAT scores will not be valid if they are more than five years old on the application deadline date.

If I retake the GMAT test, will you take the latest or the highest score?

We will accept the highest score that you have achieved on the test. If you wish to try and improve upon your existing score before you apply, you are more than welcome to do so. Please note that you cannot 'mix and match' scores from different sections on different tests.

Do you accept the GRE test for admission?

Yes, we accept both GRE and GMAT scores.

What GRE score do you expect?

While we recommend that candidates apply with a GRE verbal score of 160 and quantitative score of 161 or above, we accept all scores.  A high score does not guarantee a place, nor does a low score disqualify you. It is important to remember that GRE test scores are only one element of your application and you should not over-estimate their importance.

It is a mandatory requirement that all sections of the GRE test is taken. We are unable to waive this admissions requirement in any circumstances.

Please ensure that the test scores are forwarded by ETS to the Saïd Business School, our institution code is 0807. GRE scores will not be valid if they are more than five years old on the application deadline date.

What is the language requirement to enter the MBA programme?

If your first language is not English*, you must supply suitable evidence that you have reached the relevant level before submitting your application.

*List of majority English speaking countries as defined by the UK Visas and Immigration office.

Australia, New Zealand, USA, Canada, UK, Ireland, Antigua and Barbuda, The Bahamas, Barbados, Dominica, Grenada, Jamaica, St Kitts and Nevis, St Lucia, St Vincent and the Grenadines, Trinidad and Tobago, Belize, Guyana

Minimum score


Minimum required on each component:

Listening - 22
Reading - 24
Writing - 24
Speaking - 25


Minimum required on each component:


Waivers: The requirement to provide proof of English language proficiency may be waived, at the discretion of the University, in cases where you have successfully completed a full-time degree-level course of a minimum of nine months at a recognised institution where the medium of instruction and assessment is entirely in English.

If you wish to apply for a waiver to the English language requirement, you must select ”yes” when asked 'Have you completed or are you completing a full time qualification equivalent to a UK degree entirely taught and assessed in English?' in the English requirement section of the application form.

As evidence we will require either that the transcripts you submit with your application state that the sole language of instruction was English or an official letter from your university stating that the medium of instruction throughout your course was English. This letter must also be uploaded to the TOEFL/IELTS section of the application form.

Exchange programmes, distance learning and online courses cannot be considered for the waiver.

Please note that we reserve the right to request a test of English to be taken at any time.

What is the institution code for ordering official language scores?

The institution code for ordering your official TOEFL score sheet from ETS is 0807. There is no department code, this can be left blank.

If you choose to take the IELTS you need to sit the Academic test. If you sit the TOEFL it must be the general test.

TOEFL and IELTS scores will not be valid if they are more than two years old on the application deadline for the stage in which you are applying.

My TOEFL/IELTS language result is below the minimum score. Will you accept this for the programme?

No. You must achieve the minimum scores to be considered for the programme. This is a strict University requirement and we are unable to consider applicants whose TOEFL/ IELTS scores do not reach the indicated minimum criteria.

Is there a minimum degree/GPA level requirement?

We welcome candidates on the programme with a first or upper second class undergraduate degree or GPA of 3.5 (and above).  However, we have in certain cases accepted students with lower degrees where they have demonstrated strong work experience and GMAT scores. We can accept both three and four year degrees. 

Do I need any work experience?

It is advisable for applicants to have at least two years of previous full-time work experience. The current class average is 5.1 years. We want you to actively contribute to the MBA by sharing your views, experience and skills. 

I have followed a non-traditional career path. Will this have a negative impact on my application?

No. Previous students have come from the non-profit sector, the armed forces and fields including scientific research and academia. If you are interested in what we have to teach you and have a great story to tell about your life to date, we are interested in hearing from you.

What are the essay questions for the 2016/17 MBA application?

Mandatory essays:

  1. How do you fit with Oxford Saïd's mission? (Maximum 500 words)
  2. Is there anything not covered in the application form which you would like the Admissions Committee to know about you? (Maximum 250 words)

If you are applying under the 1+1 scheme you also need to submit the following essay:

  1.  Explain why you see this as particularly beneficial for you and how it fits with your careers and personal development aims (Maximum 250 words)

Re-applicants will need to complete the essays mentioned above and another essay on the topic:

  1. What improvements have you made in your candidacy since you last applied to the Oxford MBA? (Maximum 250 words)

When reviewing your essays the Admissions Committee will be looking for evidence of the following: Good communication skills, leadership potential, analytical skills, fit within the Oxford MBA community, among other characteristics.


How many references are required?

You will need to provide us with two references (professional or academic). We are happy to accept two professional references if you are unable to provide an academic one. An automated reference request will be sent to your referee once you have input their contact details into our online application system.  Please note that we only accept online references.

Are all applicants interviewed?

No. Applications are short-listed by the MBA Admissions Committee and only successful candidates are then invited for interview. 

How do you decide whether to interview an applicant?

We review the application in its entirety, and assess whether it satisfies all our requirements

Do I have to come to Oxford for an interview?

If you are selected for an interview, you will be invited to come to the School and have your interview here. You may wish to be interviewed on an open day or an interview day, which we offer in each application stage. We also offer interviews at key locations over the world. Applicants are strongly encouraged to attend an in-person interview whenever possible. However, if you are not able to attend in person we will arrange a Skype interview for you. This will not affect our final decision. For applicants based in the UK  a face-to-face interview at the School is required. 

Who will conduct my entry interview?

Your interview will be a one-to-one discussion with a member of the Admissions Team, Careers Department, Faculty or a sector consultant. Sector consultants are a select group of senior executives who have experience of working for leading firms across a broad range of sectors.

What are the fees for the 2017/18 programme?

The cost for the 2017/18 MBA programme is £52,000.  This includes college membership, tuition fees and a life long membership to the Oxford Union.

If I receive an offer, how do I secure my place on the programme?

Applicants who are offered and accept a place on the course are asked to pay a non-refundable deposit which will be offset against their course fee.

When should I provide you with my deposit?

The deposit payment is due within 30 days of receiving your offer on the programme.  Stage 6 applicants will only have 15 days within which to pay their deposit after receiving an offer.

I am applying for a scholarship. Do I need to pay the application processing fee?

Yes. All applicants must pay the application fee. Some scholarships may cover all fees for the MBA programme including the application fee. If you successfully secure a scholarship, you may be eligible for a refund.

If I am unsuccessful in my application, will you give me feedback about the decision?

It is the policy of the University of Oxford not to offer feedback regarding admission decisions. If you are unsuccessful in gaining a place on the programme, you are welcome to submit an application again for the following or subsequent years. To do this, a new application will have to be created. 

Can I re-apply in the future if I am not offered a place on the current year's MBA programme?

Yes, we encourage applicants who we were not totally suited to the MBA programme at the time of applying, to re-apply in the future. The Committee will look to see how you’ve progressed since the time of your previous application. 

What is a college?

As an Oxford student, you will belong to one of the University’s 38 colleges. College life will enrich your time at Oxford, offering you the chance to socialise with students and faculty from diverse academic backgrounds in situations ranging from high table dinners to college balls. Colleges are a focus for sporting and cultural activity: teams compete with each other in sports such as rowing, cricket, and rugby; plays and musicals are staged in college halls and gardens; and concerts take place in college chapels and quadrangles. Find out more about colleges here.

What is the relationship between the Saïd Business School, the Colleges and the University? How does the MBA fit into this?

The University of Oxford operates a collegiate system. This means that, in addition to being a member of a University Department (which, in the case of the MBA, is the Saïd Business School), MBA students are also members of one of Oxford's many colleges. The MBA course is taught centrally at the Saïd Business School and not the colleges, so choice of college does not affect your teaching. College membership bursts the business bubble and offers you the chance to interact with students from other disciplines and degrees. In addittion some colleges may provide you with accommodation too. 

What type of accommodation does the School offer?

Students coming to Oxford have the option of choosing either to rent privately or to apply for college accommodation. College housing is many students’ first choice, however they do have limited accommodation available, and are not able to guarantee this for every student. Colleges also have the advantage of offering printing and library facilities.

Should you be unable to secure a college room, rental property in Oxford is plentiful. The University's Accommodation Office offers advice on seeking privately rented accommodation, please email

I have submitted a 'Request for Information' form to the Admissions team. Why have I not heard anything?

We aim to answer your enquiries as quickly as possible. At busy periods the volume of queries and applications we receive means that it may take two working days for us to respond. 

Can I visit the School?

Yes, we welcome visits from prospective students. The best way to see the School and find out more about the MBA programme is to attend one of our Open Days. If you are not able to attend one of these, we ask that you contact us to arrange an appointment for a Drop-in Session at the School. To arrange a session at the School, please complete a ‘Request for Information’ form.

Do you accept candidates from the armed forces?

We welcome applicants from the armed forces. The experience gained during active military service, when combined with a good bachelors degree and a strong GMAT score contribute to the criteria required for a successful application.

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