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The key ingredient in what makes the John Locke summer schools special is not our distinguished faculty, and it's not our innovative, intensive teaching techniques: it's our students.

In order to bring together a diverse group of talented students, ready to challenge and inspire each other, we work very hard to attract the best quality applications from all over the world. Each year we receive around three applications per place. Our Director of Admissions then makes a decision based on the two components of the selection process, below:



You should submit a written application via our website. This gives you the opportunity to show us that you are bright, curious, open-minded and ambitious.


Your school grades should be included in your application. In recent years the median student admitted to our summer schools has earned, or is predicted to earn, the highest possible grades in nine or ten subjects at GCSE, or a GPA in the top decile of students.


Your academic record, though, is one of the least important things about your application, and every year we accept several students whose grades do not reflect their potential, so please use the written application to tell us about why you would be great for our course, and why our course would be great for you.


At least two-thirds of all candidates are then invited to interview with our Academic Director or one of our other senior faculty members. This interview normally takes place at your school or online, via Zoom, and should take 20 to 25 minutes. It is intended to test how you listen, how you think, and how you formulate and present arguments. A successful candidate will demonstrate precision of thought, intellectual flexibility, responsiveness to new information, and logical discipline. We hope you will find the interview exciting, as this is a good indication that you will enjoy our courses.


We will write to you with an admissions decision within two weeks of the interview. 

Regrettably, it is not possible to review admissions decisions, though unsuccessful candidates are encouraged to submit another application the following year.



Financial Aid

One in five students at the John Locke Institute summer schools will receive some form of financial support from a philanthropic trust created by the Institute.


If we encounter a student of unusually high ability, or a student who will significantly add to the intellectual, social or cultural diversity of our community, we will invite that student to submit an application for a merit-based scholarship. This will involve writing an essay of 1500 - 2000 words and sometimes an additional interview, this time with our Director. These scholarships are worth £600 or $800.

For scholarship recipients from low-income families, this award can be topped up by a means-tested bursary. Means-tested bursaries are awarded to candidates whose financial circumstances make it difficult or impossible to afford the full fees. A typical bursary is worth £1000 or $1250, but the exact value is determined at the sole discretion of the Financial Aid Committee, whose deliberations are confidential.


Before submitting a financial aid application, candidates must first be accepted to one of our courses. 



John Locke alumni (students who attended one or more of our courses in the past) and their brother and/or sister can apply for our summer school(s) at reduced fees. 

  • Alumni Grant: 20% 

  • Sibling Grant: 10% 

  • Ambassador Grant: 40% (which includes the alumni grant)

Our alumni-ambassadors help us to raise the profile of the Institute with their schools, their friends and the public, and our donors contribute funds to subsidise the fees for our ambassadors to attend future courses. 
If you become a John Locke ambassador you would receive a forty percent reduction in summer school fees. In order to be eligible for the ambassador grant we would ask you to meet some conditions. Please email to request further details. You are automatically eligible for the twenty percent alumni scholarship, of course, even if you don't become an ambassador. 

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From the Office of Admissions

I am honoured to contribute to the cultivation of intellectual curiosity and excellence in the next generation of thinkers and leaders by selecting the brightest students to join the John Locke Institute community.

The John Locke Institute is where exceptional students meet with world-class professors to develop listening and thinking skills, refine powers of expression, and enhance understanding of how the world works - and how it should work.

If you would like to join our community of like-minded students in Oxford, Princeton, Washington DC or Singapore, I kindly invite you to apply for one of our courses.

Our team is happy to address all your inquiries and guide you through the application process, helping you take the first step towards joining the Institute and an inspiring community that will not only expand your knowledge but also challenge your beliefs and propel you toward new achievements.

We look forward to welcoming you among our passionate learners and future leaders.

Best wishes,

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Victoria Kapeliushna

Director of Admissions

Princeton: +1 (609) 608-0543 . Oxford: +44 (0)1865 566166 .

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Q. How can I apply to your summer school(s)?

A. You can send an application form on our website, and we will contact you within seven days to schedule an interview.

Q. What is the word limit for my essay in the application form?

A. Your essay cannot be longer than 500 words.


Q. What should I mention in the “Reference Details” section of the application form?

A. Please provide the name and contact details of an academic referee who can answer questions about your suitability for a programme such as ours, in the event that our admissions team would like more information. 


Q. What if I made a mistake in the application form?

A. Email us at, and we will help you to update the form with the new details you would have provided. Please do not submit a new application.


Q. What should I do if I lost the link allowing me to submit my application at a later date?

A. To retrieve the link, email us at


Q. Can I change course after I submit my application?

A. Please notify us at the earliest opportunity if you would like to change your registration. You can email us at We cannot guarantee that we will be able to transfer your registration but we will certainly try!

Q. Can I attend more than one summer school? 

A. Yes. Please indicate which courses you would like to be considered for when you lodge your application. 


Q. Will I receive an acknowledgement that my application was submitted successfully?

A. You will be redirected to a Thank You page on our website as soon as you submit your application. If the window doesn't pop up, please email so we can confirm that we successfully received your application. 


Q. When will I receive an invitation to an interview?

A. If your application meets our requirements, you will normally be invited for an interview within one week of the submission date.


Q. How should I prepare for my interview?

A. After getting an invitation to interview, our Dean of Admissions will send you a short video, where she will tell you what you should do to prepare.


Q. When will I receive an admissions decision?

A. We typically send admissions decisions within two weeks of the interview.


Q. What if I haven’t received any emails from you? Does it mean that my application was unsuccessful?

A. We send admissions decisions to all the candidates, so if you didn’t receive any emails from us, please check your inbox, including the spam folder, again. If you can’t find any emails, please contact us at


Q. Who can I contact if I need help understanding which course would suit me best?

A. Please email us at, and one of our admissions officers will get back to you as soon as possible.


Q. Can I apply for a scholarship?

A. You can apply for a scholarship only after being  accepted onto a course. Once you receive an acceptance letter, you can email, asking to be considered for financial aid. 


Q. Can I apply to your summer school(s) if I have participated in a John Locke course in a previous year?

A. Yes! We love to see alumni coming back. Please submit an application form on our website. You will have the opportunity on the form to tell us if you have attended one of our courses in the past. 

If you have a question which is not included in the FAQs above, please email and we will do our best to help you. Please be aware that, at certain times of the year, it may take up to seven days to answer your message. If your question is urgent, please telephone us. 

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