Oriental Languages Aptitude Test (OLAT)

You need to take the OLAT if you are applying to study a Middle Eastern language - Arabic, Hebrew, Persian, or Turkish - as part of one of these undergraduate courses at the University of Oxford:

  • Oriental Studies
  • European and Middle Eastern Languages
  • Oriental Studies with Classics (T9Q8)
  • Theology and Oriental Studies (VT69)

If you are applying for a joint course, you may need to take a separate test in your other subject. You can confirm this at www.ox.ac.uk/tests.

The test is only one part of the overall application process.

What's in the test?

The OLAT is a 30-minute test of your ability to learn a new language quickly. It assesses your ability to analyse how languages work, in a way which doesn't depend on your knowledge of any particular language.

Click here to view a sample OLAT paper.

Further samples of the test are available via the Classics website where Part B of the CLAT, which constitutes the OLAT, may be consulted for practice. These papers may be accessed at the following URL: http://www.classics.ox.ac.uk/tests.html.

When do I register for the OLAT?

You need to register by the 15th of October, separately from your UCAS application. As late registrations are not accepted, you need to ask your centre to register you for the OLAT well before the registraion deadline.

When do I take the OLAT?

The test is generally taken in the first week of November each year.

Where do I take the test?

You can take the test at your own school or college, if it's registered as an authorised test centre. If you are not attending school/college, you can find a list of Admissions Testing Service authorised test centres around the world. Find your nearest test centre at: www.admissionstestingservice.org/find-a-centre.

What if my school is not an authorised test centre?

You can ask your school or college to apply to become an authorised test centre at: www.admissionstestingservice.org/become-a-centre.

First, they will need to register as an authorised test centre, then register you as a test candidate separately.

How much does the test cost?

You don't need to pay a test entry fee. However, if using an Admissions Testing Service authorised centre, you may need to pay your test centre an administrative fee, so it's always best to check with your school/college first if they can administer the test.

How do I prepare for the OLAT?

The best way to prepare for the OLAT is to do a practice test. You can find a specimen paper, along with more guidance, at: www.ox.ac.uk/tests.

Key dates for the OLAT

  • Registration opens: 1st September
  • Modified paper requests (e.g. braille, enlarged): by 30th September
  • Registration deadline: 15th October by 17:00 BST (this is the same as the UCAS application deadline)
  • Test date: first week in November

Where can I find out more?

The OLAT is developed and used by the University of Oxford's Faculty of Oriental Studies, and administered by the Admissions Testing Service.

University of Oxford

Admissions Information Centre

+44 (0)1865 288000



Admissions Testing Service

Admissions tests support: www.admissionstestingservice.org/help

About the OLAT: www.admissionstestingservice.org/olat

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