Oxford and Cambridge Mock Preparation Day

Partner: The Charter School, London (1)
Partner type: Maintained School
Project category: Academic

We welcomed students from The Charter School who were applying to Oxford and Cambridge to attend our Oxford and Cambridge Preparation Day. The students received mock interviews, advice on preparing for admissions tests and had the opportunity to attend talks on gap years and life at university. Scientists heard lectures from Dr Natalie Roberts from Médecins Sans Frontières and from Professor Jon Butterworth (Head of Physics at UCL).

Aims of the project

At Alleyn's School we have a great deal of experience in advising sixth formers on their applications to Oxford and Cambridge and are lucky to have a number of staff with the expertise and experience to offer insight into the challenges that students will face when they go for an interview.

Our aim is to offer talented students from selected local state schools the opportunity to receive a mock interview from someone they do not know, and to participate in group discussions, workshops and preparation sessions with sixth formers from other schools and other backgrounds.

The critical success factors are:

  • Availability of appropriately qualified and experienced teachers at Alleyn's
  • Identification of suitable sixth formers by the partnership school


  • Sixth formers feel more prepared for their Oxford/Cambridge interviews
  • Social interaction with sixth formers from another school.

Background and goals

This project has been established for seven years. The partnership came about via staff connections between the two schools, and regular communication in order to set the project up each year.


  • The project relies on the support and expertise of the teaching staff at Alleyn's
  • 25 teaching staff are involved in the running the day
  • Administrative staff are vital in setting up and co-ordinating the project
  • The MCT at Alleyn's theatre is used for lectures


The project outcomes are followed up by discussing with the partner school the interview outcomes and feedback for the specific students that attended the day

Pupil involvement

The project involves around 15 students from partnership schools as well as 100 students from our own (mixed) sixth form.

Frequency and duration

This activity lasts for a day in October and is repeated annually.