Harvard vs Oxford Honest Review 2024 (Which University is Better?)

Deciding which university you need to study at is very hard. It becomes even harder if you are choosing between the top two prestigious universities – Harvard and Oxford. This was me a few years back. I know how much research I did at that time. Both of the universities are well renowned all over the world. Believe me, I was in the position, at which you are right now. Thus, I know how stressful it is to decide on the right institution. Well, to make your life easy, I have discussed a short comparison between Harvard vs Oxford University. Give it a read to make all your doubts vanish.

Harvard vs Oxford Honest Review (Which University is Better)

Harvard vs Oxford – Which University is Better?

Though while deciding which one to go for you will need to take care of various factors like the acceptance rate, types of programs offered, and the cost of getting into the university. Thus we have compared both universities depending on different aspects and decided which one is better for you.

Is it hard to get into Harvard?

Harvard is currently the most difficult school to get into, with a low admission rate of just 3.19%.  Harvard evaluates each student as a whole person, taking both character and academic potential into account when making admission decisions. The school is making a concerted effort to carefully review each application to fully understand students’ academic interests and backgrounds. Always remember that the admission heads will always look for the letters of recommendation, extracurricular activities, etc in your application while selected.

Is it hard to get into Oxford?

Oxford University is one of the most preferential and prestigious universities in the United Kingdom. Oxford’s acceptance rate is only 15.8%. With an acceptance rate of 15.8%, the university rejects more than 60% of applications. This acceptance rate is subject to UK students only. However, when it comes to international students, the acceptance rate is even lower. It is approximately 9% for them. However, half of Oxford’s students are international students. It is as tough as to get into Cambridge.

Harvard vs Oxford Honest Review (Which University is Better)

Is Oxford or Harvard harder to get into?

As we discussed above the acceptance rate of Harward is just 3.19% and for oxford is 15.8%. Though both the schools have a very less acceptance rate, it is clear from the figures that it is harder to get into Harward which is less than even 5%. One thing that you must remember is that this acceptance rate is the overall acceptance rate of both schools, which means that the acceptance rate of various departments may vary. Also, this shows how hard you need to work on your academics, working experience, etc to make it to get into one of both colleges.

What grades will you need to get into Oxford or Harvard?

As you already know that both universities have low acceptance rates. This means that you will need to have very high grades to enter this school. You will need to get AAA to A*A*A* in your A-levels to get into Oxford. However, if you get a B in any A-level, you may still enter the school depending on which subject you want to take. For example, if you are taking law as your subject and you get a B in any additional subject then it does not affect your application. You must also try to get good experience and at least two letters of recommendation for yourself to increase your chances of getting selected.

Whereas to get into Harvard,  you need to give a strong personal statement. Harvard is a school that not only looks for your grades but also focuses on who you are personally. This is an important thing to consider while applying to this university. However, on average you must have a score of 1580 on your SAT and 35 on your ACT.

You must also remember the SAT taken in the US is different from the SATs taken in the UK and it may take time to receive the SAT result. Thus when you saw awaiting fulfillment on the account, you must not worry. This means that your results are out and you will be able to see them in a few days. If you have scored less than what is required then you must try to get the best personal statement for yourself. 

What are the different degree programs offered in both schools?

Which school is better for you will be dependent upon which course you want to take up. This means that both universities have different types of courses and programs to offer. However, you must know that Harward is the school that will offer you more than the 37,000 courses out of which you can choose. On the other hand, Oxford only offers you 49 undergraduate programs that too in Geography, English, law, medicine, etc. This shows that Oxford can not compete with Harward in terms of the courses. 

What is the ranking of both colleges?

Various institutions have ranked both universities differently. According to U.S. News Harvard is ranked #1 in global universities and Oxford is #5 in global universities. However, talking about another website i.e Times Higher Education Website has mentioned Oxford as the #1 global university and Harvard as the #2 position.

However, it is important for you to know from the last 5 consecutive years they have kept Oxford at the #1 position. Times Higher Education Website determines their list based on teaching, Citations, Industry income, International outlook, and research. Although according to it, Harvard comes first if the universities are compared based on teaching.

How much cost does it take to get into both universities?

There is no doubt that to study at a good university, you need to spend a lot of money to get into it. Now think of how much you need to spend on the universities like Oxford or Harvard which are too prestigious. The tuition fees for Oxford are about £9,250 for domestic students. If you are an international student it can go up to £37,310 depending on your course. In addition to it, the cost of living can be a good expense to add on. The cost of living can go anywhere between £1,175 to £15,390. Although it might look expensive, the university is always there to help the students who are in need. 

On the contrary, if we talk about Harvard, studying a single course can cost you up to £57,751.87. However, the best part of this university is the financial aid services they offer. If you go to their official website and apply for grants or scholarships after meeting their requirements, you may not even need to spend a single amount on tuition fees. 


Harvard and Oxford are both universities that are best in their own ways. They have been ranked in the top 5 global institutions by different platforms which is in itself a big thing. Which university is best for you depends upon which course you want to do.

It is because Oxford is a university that does not offer many courses whereas Harvard is a university that offers a lot of courses for you to choose from. However, you must remember both universities have less than a 20% acceptance rate which shows both universities are difficult to get into. Also, the cost of living and the tuition fee is much higher for Harvard. Though both universities have financial aid for students who are in need. 

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