Essay competitions at Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge
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Essay Competitions

Each year, Fitzwilliam College runs essay competitions in a variety of subjects, allowing talented pupils to explore their interests beyond the school curriculum.

The University of Cambridge seeks out students with a passion for their subject and who have investigated it outside the classroom. Our essay competitions provide students with an opportunity to engage with their interests in this way, allowing them to demonstrate their enthusiasm for their subject.

2021 Competitions

This year we will be running essay competitions in Ancient World and Classics, Archaeology, Land Economy, and Russian Studies. We will additionally be running an Architecture design competition. Further particulars and this year's questions can be found at the links below. Please read the competition rules and submission guidelines carefully before entering a competition.

Ancient World and Classics


Land Economy

Russian Studies

Architecture (entrants to the Architecture Design Competition may also want to study this document: Building Fitzwilliam College 1963-2013: An Architectural Journey), along with the College's site plan.

The deadline for the Ancient World and Classics, Archaeology, Russian Studies, and Architecture competitions is 10am on Friday 30 April. The deadline for the Land Economy competition is 10am on Friday 21 May.

Competition rules

These essay competitions are exclusively for students in their penultimate year of education (Year 12 in England and Wales, S5 in Scotland, Year 13 in Northern Ireland). They are open to students in any country but submissions must be written in English.

Submissions should strictly adhere to the word limit set out in the subject brief (2500 words for Ancient World, Archaeology and Land Economy; 500 words for the Architecture narrative), and contain a bibliography at the end. The word count should exclude the bibliography, but include any footnotes. Each page should be numbered and contain the applicant's full name.

Students are only permitted to enter one competition and may only submit one entry to that competition. There is a strict limit of five submissions per school for each competition. If more than five students from the same school enter the same competition, a teacher from that school will be contacted and asked to select the five entries; failure to do so will result in all submissions from the school to that competition being disqualified. When submitting an essay, the student will be asked to provide the name and email address of a teacher who may be contacted in order to verify the submission.

The submission must be entirely the individual student's work and must not be submitted or have been submitted to an exam board as part of any coursework or extended essay, either in part or in full.

Submission guidelines

Anyone who wishes to enter an essay competition must complete the online form here.

Submissions can be uploaded to the online form in a pdf format. If the file size is too big to upload to the form, please email your submission to We can also accept entries by post. Please address postal submissions to: Schools Liaison Officer, Fitzwilliam College, Storey's Way, Cambridge, CB3 0DG.

You should receive an email confirmation after submitting the form. If you do not receive confirmation, please contact us at the email address below.

Contact us

If you have any questions relating to the competitions please contact us on