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University of Cambridge

The University of Cambridge was founded in 1209; it has a global reputation for outstanding academic achievement and world-class original research.

City Centre
City Centre

In or close to the centre of a city

UCAS Code: C05

Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF)

TEF Gold is awarded to institutions that consistently deliver outstanding teaching, learning and outcomes for their students. Find out more about TEF.

Student Statistics

Student population

Small
<5,000
Medium
5–10,000
Large
10–25,000
Largest
>25,000

Level of study

  • Undergraduate 61%
  • Postgraduate 39%

Mode of study

  • Full Time 92%
  • Part Time 8%

Where students come from

  • UK 66%
  • EU 13%
  • Other 22%

Student gender

  • Male 53%
  • Female 47%

Student Services and Facilities

Libraries and Information Services

  • Each college library contains the standard texts needed for undergraduate courses, as well as other materials. The university provides extensive library facilities in every department.
  • The university library is a copyright library (entitled by law to receive a copy of every book published in Britain).

Student jobs

  • The university takes the view that its students should not work during term-time – an appropriate work:life balance is important to ensure students' well-being. A wide range of financial support is offered to undergraduates so they do not need to find paid work during term-time.

Careers advice

  • In addition to the support and guidance offered by the university’s Careers Service, many colleges and departments offer careers advice and services.

Health services

  • Students are advised to register with a GP on arrival at university. 
  • Most Cambridge colleges also have a nurse who can help with a variety of health and welfare needs – including assessments and support for minor illnesses and injuries.
  • Please refer to the university website for details.

Counselling and Mental Health Support

  • The university encourages students to take positive action to maintain their well-being.
  • The university Counselling Service provides free, specialist mental health interventions through a professionally staffed confidential service to students experiencing psychological distress. 
  • In addition, two Mental Health Advisers provide a range of support to students experiencing moderate to severe mental health difficulties, through referral from the student's college or university staff.

Disability support

  • The university's Disability Resource Centre (DRC) offers guidance, information and support to prospective and current students with a disability, specific learning difference, autism, and/or long-term health condition.
  • Transitional events run in September for students who have declared a disability and who are about to start their studies at the university.

Other services and facilities

  • Opening in 2019, a new Student Services Centre will bring under one roof a number of teams providing support to students. This includes the University Counselling Service, Disability Resource Centre, and the Careers Service.

Students' Union

  • The Cambridge University Students' Union (CUSU) represents the interests of all university students and provides a range of central services and support beyond that provided by the colleges.
  • Every college also has its own Students' Union, to which students are elected to represent students at a college level.

History

  • The earliest records for the University of Cambridge date from 1209, when scholars from Oxford arrived in the town.
  • A collegiate university, Peterhouse was the first college to be founded, in 1284; the university now comprises 31 colleges and 150 departments, faculties, schools and other institutions.
  • Historic figures associated with the university include Thomas Cranmer, first Archbishop of the Church of England after the Reformation; Isaac Newton, whose Principia Mathematica established the fundamental principles of modern physics; and literary giants Wordsworth, Coleridge and Byron.

Fascinating Fact

  • Researchers at the University of Cambridge have been developing a material that mimics spider silk, spun from a material that is 98% water. Using silica and cellulose, the fibres are both sustainable and low-energy to produce.

Notable Alumni and Famous Faces

  • David Attenborough – broadcaster and naturalist.
  • Dian Fossey – conservationist.
  • Thandie Newton – actress.
  • Sandi Toksvig – comedian and political activist.
  • Alan Turing – computer scientist.
  • A S Byatt – novelist, poet and Booker Prize winner.
  • David Mitchell – comedian, actor and writer.
  • Robert Webb – comedian, actor and writer.
  • Antony Gormley – sculptor.
  • John Sentamu – Anglican bishop.

Address

University of Cambridge, Cambridge Admissions Office, Fitzwilliam House, 32 Trumpington Street, Cambridge, CB2 1QY