Cambridge Essay Competitions

Essay competitions are brilliant for a number of reasons!

You can use them to:

- Explore a topic you’re fascinated about beyond the school curriculum
- Develop invaluable research and essay writing experience
- Show evidence of your genuine interest in your subject when writing your personal statement!

Here are some of the essay competitions currently open for submissions. Be sure to check any eligibility criteria, requirements and deadlines. This page will be updated when new competitions are announced, and when deadlines are passed, so check back regularly!

Fitzwilliam College Essay Competitions: various subjects πŸ”— 🌟 This year, Fitzwilliam College is running a variety of competitions in Ancient World and Classics, Archaeology, History, Land Economy, Medieval World, Architecture, and Economics (this last one is for state-school UK students only). All competitions are open to Year 12 students and are designed to encourage students to pursue their interests in subjects they might not be able to study in depth at school. The deadline has now passed, but make sure to check back in early 2024 for updates.

Newnham College Woolf Essay Prize πŸ”— 🌟 Currently open is the Woolf Essay Competition on women in literature, history, society and culture. There are also competitions for other subjects - more information these will be coming soon. Deadline for Woolf Prize: 12pm UK time on Friday 14th July.

Girton College Humanities Writing Competition πŸ”— An opportunity for students interested in pursuing any humanities subject to write creatively! Year 12 students may enter with an essay or piece of creative writing using an object from Girton College’s small antiquities museum, the Lawrence Room, as their prompt. The deadline has now passed, but check back next year!

Robinson College Essay Prize: various subjects πŸ”— Year 12 students may submit an essay of up to 2,000 words in response to one of the set questions, which cover a wide variety of academic subjects. The prize did not run in 2023, but may in 2024.

Trinity College Essay Prizes πŸ”— These competitions give entrants the opportunity to write an essay of up to 2,000 words in response to the set question/(s).

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