Colleges of the University of Cambridge
This is a list of the colleges within the University of Cambridge. These colleges provide most of the accommodation for undergraduates and graduates at the University, and at the undergraduate level they have responsibility for admitting students to the University and organising their tuition. They also provide funding, accommodation, or both, for some of the senior research posts in the University. They are self-governed charities in their own right, with their own endowments and possessions. Until the mid-19th century, both Cambridge and Oxford comprised a group of colleges with a small central university administration, rather than universities in the common sense.
"Old" and "new" colleges
The University of Cambridge has 31 colleges, founded between the 13th and 20th centuries. No colleges were founded between 1596 (Sidney Sussex College) and 1800 (Downing College), which allows the colleges to be distinguished into two groups according to foundation date:
- the 16 'old' colleges, founded between 1284 and 1596, and
- the 15 'new' colleges, founded between 1800 and 1977.
The oldest college is Peterhouse, founded in 1284, and the newest is Robinson, founded in 1977. Homerton, which was first founded in the eighteenth century as a dissenting academy (and later teacher training college), attained full college status in 2010.
Restrictions on entry
All 16 of the "old" colleges and 8 of the 15 "new" ones admit both male and female students as both undergraduates and postgraduates, without any age restrictions. Seven colleges restrict entry by sex, or by age of undergraduates, or admit only postgraduates:
- three admit only women (Murray Edwards, Newnham and Lucy Cavendish);
- of these, one admits only women who are either mature students, i.e. aged 21 or older, or postgraduates (Lucy Cavendish);
- two admit only postgraduates (Clare Hall and Darwin);
- three admit both male and female students, but only those who are either mature students or postgraduates (Hughes Hall, St Edmund’s and Wolfson).
No colleges are all-male, although most originally were. Darwin, founded in 1964, was the first mixed college, while in 1972 Churchill, Clare and King's colleges were the first previously all-male colleges to admit women. The last all-male college to become mixed was Magdalene, in 1988.
Lucy Cavendish also places restrictions on the admission of staff members, allowing only females to become fellows of the college. The same is true of Newnham, but not Murray Edwards.
Key: U–undergraduates, P–postgraduates, Abb-Official abbreviation used in the Reporter.
|Scarf colours||College||Founded||U||P||Male %||Female %||Total||Fixed assets (£)
||Clare Hall||1966||0||155||47||53||155||10,579,203||||CLH||Graduate students only.|
||Darwin||1964||0||674||54||46||674||33,160,032||||DAR||Graduate students only.|
||Girton||1869||531||146||53||47||677||64,000,000||||G||Formerly women's only; became mixed in 1976|
||Gonville and Caius||1348||546||173||60||40||719||120,459,000||||CAI|
||Hughes Hall||1885 (1949)||85||334||61||39||419||18,483,546||||HH||Mature undergrad, and grad students only. Became mixed in 1973.|
||Lucy Cavendish||1965||110||110||0||100||220||13,757,000||||LC||Mature female undergrad, and female grad students only.|
||Murray Edwards||1954||387||55||0||100||442||53,960,995||||MUR||Female only. Formerly New Hall.|
||Newnham||1871||412||112||0||100||524||90,287,969||||N||Female students only.|
||St Edmund's||1896||126||205||69||31||331||15,421,967||||ED||Mature undergrad, and grad students only.|
||Wolfson||1965||119||385||64||36||504||17,088,000||||W||Mature undergrad, and grad students only.|
|Totals||11,824||6,002||17,826||c. 3,407,053,395||Total Endowment of University, c. £4.1 billion|
There are also several theological colleges in Cambridge (for example Ridley Hall, Wesley House, Westcott House and Westminster College) that are affiliated with the university through the Cambridge Theological Federation. These colleges, while not officially part of the University of Cambridge, operate programmes that are either validated by or are taught on behalf either of the University or of Anglia Ruskin or Durham Universities.
Heads of Colleges
Most colleges are led by a Master, even when the Master is female. However, there are some exceptions. Girton College has always had a Mistress, even though male candidates have been able to run for the office since 1976.
- Mistress: Girton College
- President: Clare Hall, Hughes Hall, Lucy Cavendish College, Murray Edwards College, Queens' College, Wolfson College
- Principal: Homerton College, Newnham College
- Provost: King's College
- Warden: Robinson College
The above list does not include several former colleges that no longer exist. These include:
- Ayerst Hostel, founded in the 1880s. The hostel eventually failed and was occupied by St Edmund's House (renamed St Edmund's College, Cambridge).
- Buckingham College, founded in 1428 as a Benedictine hall, refounded as Magdalene in 1542.
- Bull College, a college for US GIs, existing from 1945 to 1946.
- Cavendish College, founded in 1873, a failed attempt to allow poorer students to sit the Tripos examinations, whose buildings were bought by Homerton in 1895.
- "Clare Hall" was the name of Clare College between 1338 and 1856. Clare College founded a new college named Clare Hall in 1966.
- Gonville Hall, founded in 1348, and re-founded in 1557 as Gonville and Caius College.
- God's House, founded in 1437, and re-founded in 1505 as Christ's College.
- King's Hall, founded in 1317, and combined with Michaelhouse to form Trinity College in 1546.
- Michaelhouse, founded in 1324, and combined with King's Hall to form Trinity College in 1546.
- New Hall, founded 1954, and re-founded in 2008 as Murray Edwards College
- Physwick Hostel, Cambridge - was a predecessor of Gonville and Caius College
- University College, founded 1965, and re-founded in 1972 as Wolfson College
- University Hall, founded 1326, refounded as Clare Hall in 1338, renamed as Clare College in 1856.
- List of Oxbridge sister colleges
- List of fictional Cambridge colleges
- Colleges of the University of Oxford
- Colleges of Durham University
- Colleges of the University of York
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