Colleges and Accommodation
Oxford is a collegiate university, in which every student of the University must be a member of a college.
As a graduate student, a college will typically provide you with subsidised accommodation and meals, library, a place of worship, computing facilities, sports equipment and a social centre, including a graduate common room and bar. Some colleges only take graduates, whilst others take a mixture of graduates and undergraduates. They tend to differ in terms of size, age, and location, although all are within a 10-minute cycle from the Department of Computer Science. The college to which you belong will become a really important part of your life. Even if you choose not to live in a college, you will be assigned a college place for your studies and social activities.
See the right-hand side box for a list of Colleges and Permanent Private Halls (similar to colleges but generally smaller and founded by particular Christian denominations) which routinely accept students applying for the full-time MSc and DPhil in Computer Science.
Further information about individual colleges can be found in the University Graduate Studies Prospectus.
On the graduate application form, you may choose to either:
- state a college preference. (You will not be able to amend your choice after submitting your application.)
- indicate that you have no college preference, in which case a college will be selected on your behalf.
Whether or not you state a college preference will not affect how we assess your application and ultimately whether or not we decide to make you an offer. But, if you do choose to state a college of preference, you may wish to consider the following factors in making your selection:
- Whether the accommodation is suitable for couples, families and/or students with disabilities, if needed.
- Funding opportunities.
- The location within Oxford.
- Whether it is specifically for graduates or if it also accepts undergraduate students.
You can find more detailed information about college choice on the College Guide section of the main University website.
If you are offered a place on the programme of graduate study to which you have applied, you will also be guaranteed a place at a college or permanent private hall. The college will contact you separately and make an offer of a place, subject to you satisfying any financial conditions required by it. The place offered will not necessarily be at the college you have specified on your application form. Some are heavily over-subscribed, and so not all applicants can be accepted at their specified college. Applicants in this position will be allocated a place elsewhere. The offer of a college place does not guarantee accommodation.
As a full-time graduate student at the University, you will be required to live within 25 miles of the Carfax tower, which marks the centre of the city of Oxford, during term time. This ensures that you have full and consistent access to the world-class academic resources and thriving college communities which underpin studying and researching at Oxford. There is a wide range of accommodation options available, both privately and within the University, to suit a variety of needs and living arrangements.
The Students Union publishes an Alternative Prospectus. It is aimed at undergraduates, but contains information on some colleges that may be of use to you.