Your Cambridge journey will begin with a series of orientation and freshers events to introduce you to the various parts of the University. Check the key dates below to find out when you need to arrive for your orientation sessions.
- Welcome from the President
"Starting a degree course in Cambridge can be daunting, but is also an incredibly exciting time. Be assured that there is a whole community to help you settle in here at Wolfson, to reach your goals and achieve your academic potential.
Something very special happens at Wolfson when we admit our new students, who are of all ages and come from all corners of the world. Bringing you together in one shared space, without divisions by level of study or academic status, creates opportunities for interactions that are immensely fruitful. Inspiration is all around you here, from casual conversations at the Coffee Bar to our wonderful Formal Hall dinners, as well as the vast range of events organised by our various hubs, clubs and societies.
Some of you will have a mere nine months here, some of you will have much longer. Be warned, though, time will fly! So I urge you to make the most of all that Cambridge and Wolfson offer; not just in your intellectual and educational endeavours, but embrace too the opportunities to expand your cultural, social, and sporting life. I look forward to meeting you all and welcoming you to our brilliant College community.
This is the start of an exciting new chapter, and I’m delighted that Wolfson will play a role in your academic journey. "
Professor Jane Clarke
- Orientation timetables
Orientation events for new Undergraduate and Foundation-Year students will take place in College from the evening of Tue 27 through Fri 30 September 2022.
Orientation events for new Postgraduate students will take place on Sunday, 02 October 2022, 10am until 6pm.
A photograph of the new undergraduate and postgraduate cohorts will be taken on Sunday 02 October from 12 noon. Whilst there is no strict dress code, we recommend wearing formal attire (business suits or equivalent) and a gown if you have one.
Download detailed orientation timetables below:
Matriculation is the process by which you formally become a student of the University and the College. There are two parts to your matriculation, a University Matriculation, which entails completing an online form, and a College ceremony, which you attend in person. For University Matriculation, all students will be sent a link to the online University Matriculation Form in early October so please look out for this email.
For the College Matriculation ceremony, the Tutorial Office will invite you by email to attend on one of the following dates: 03 October, 10 October, 11 October, 18 October.
Please keep all these dates free so that you are available to attend on your given ceremony date. The ceremony will be followed by a formal dinner in the dining hall. Students are expected to wear formal attire (business suits or equivalent) and a gown if they have one.
Matriculation for many part-time MSt and MAcc students will take place in September, at the beginning of the course. These students will be invited to their given ceremony and dinner by email.
- Start of term
The University term begins on Tuesday 04 October, with the first lectures and seminars at many Departments starting on Thursday 06 October. There are three terms in the Cambridge academic year, Michaelmas (October to December), Lent (January to March) and Easter (April to June).
One of the first things that new students need to do when they arrive is to register at the Tutorial Office. The steps you need to take to register, including collecting your University card, are detailed below.
- Tutorial Office opening times
The College Registration process is managed by Wolfson's Tutorial Office. Tutorial staff will be available in the Karen Spärck Jones room (KSJ) next to the Club Room from 9am-5pm, Monday to Friday, from Tuesday 27 September to Wednesday 05 October. From Thursday 06 October Tutorial staff will return to the Tutorial Office located on the first floor of Bredon House. The Tutorial Office is open for registration from 9.30am-12.30pm and 1.30pm-4.30pm, Monday to Friday.
New students are required to visit the Tutorial Office within the first week of term to complete their College registration. The identity documents required to complete registration are outlined in the next section.
- Registration documents
New students are required to bring the following identity documentation to the College Tutorial Office within the first week of term to complete their College registration. Copies or scans of identity documents are not accepted, you must bring the original version. Please see the list of required documentation by nationality below.
EITHER a valid passport OR a full birth/adoption certificate issued in the UK, Channel Islands, Isle of Man or Ireland; OR a current photo-card driving licence (full or provisional), issued in the UK or Ireland, and confirming the holder was born within the EEA; OR a Deed of change of name; OR a certificate of naturalisation or registration as a British Citizen
EEA or Swiss national
EITHER a valid passport, OR a current National Identity card issued by an EEA country, OR a Registration Certificate, Permanent Residence card OR other document certifying permanent residence issued by the UK Home Office
A valid passport and your Tier 4 Biometric Residence Permit (BRP). Your visa must be sponsored by the University of Cambridge for the particular course you are undertaking this year. More information is available in the international students section below.
If you used eGates to enter the UK at the border, you will also need to bring your e-ticket, boarding pass or email confirmation from the airline to show the College your date of entry into the UK.
This includes Tier 4/Student visa holders from Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea and the USA, who can enter the UK using eGates if they are open at your port of entry.
- University card
One of the most important items you will receive during your first few days is your University Card. Your card will have many functions during your time in Cambridge, including borrowing books from libraries, printing and photocopying, making payments in the College dining hall and bar, and accessing certain areas of the University.
You can collect your University Card from the Tutorial Office once you have completed College registration (see above).
- University email
When you complete your students registration, you will recieve an email from the University Student Registry to activate your Cambridge user ID ("CRSid") and Raven password. This login will allow you access to University systems such as your university email ("@cam"), as well as many other associated services.
The College and University will communicate with you via your "@cam" email address. We recommend checking this email regularly and advise adding it to your email app or bookmarks. If you will not be checking you @cam address regularly and have another preferred email address, please ensure that you update your contact information in CamSIS with your preferred email address (below) and set up your @cam account to forward emails to your preferred address.
- CamSIS registration (required)
New students must register their personal details, including term-time address and emergency contacts on CamSIS (Cambridge’s system for handling student information, records and transactions).
Please note that although you may have received your Raven ID and Password you will not be able to access your Self Service account until the start date of your first term. Around this date, all new students will receive an invitation by email to complete your student registration.
When you receive this email, please log in to your Self-Service account and complete the Student Registration process. You can update your CamSIS record by clicking on the ‘Personal’ tile and then ‘Personal Details’ in the left-hand menu. There is a PDF guide at the bottom of this page with detailed instructions. If you are having trouble registering after receiving your invitation email, please consult the frequently asked questions.
To complete your registration, please update CamSIS with your current UK phone number and full UK (Cambridge) residential address (including postcode and college room number, if applicable) as soon as possible.
- Please update CamSIS with your UK phone number in the international format (0044***********) if it is a mobile number, or including the area code (0**********) if it is a landline number.
- For your residential address, if it is not in College accommodation, as a minimum, please provide your house/flat number, road name and post code.
- Disability Resource Centre (DRC)
If you have a disability or particular accessibility requirements, you may choose to disclose this to the University via the Disability Resource Centre (DRC).
You can provide information relating to your requirements through the DRC student information form. Completing this form in as much detail as possible will assist your Disability Adviser to determine what support the University of Cambridge can offer.
Further information for incoming students can be found on the DRC website.
The sections below identify some of the key areas that international students must complete when coming to Cambridge. Comprehensive information can be found in the International Students Guide produced by the University of Cambridge.
- Visa documentation
If you are being sponsored to study full-time at Cambridge on a student visa, it is important to read the student visa responsibilities information on the University of Cambridge website, which is also available to download as a guidebook. These responsibilities apply if you are studying on a Tier 4 student visa or a visa granted under the student route after 05 October 2020.
Before you start your studies at Cambridge, you will need to provide us with evidence of your student immigration documentation for your student record, in accordance with UK Visa and Immigration (UKVI) requirements.
You will need to attend in person to have your documents checked and scanned. College Tutorial staff will be available in the Karen Spärck Jones room (KSJ) next to the Club Room from 9am-5pm, Monday to Friday, from Tuesday 27 September to Wednesday 05 October, to check and scan your documents.
Please download and read the Immigration Documentation Guidance so you are aware what you need to provide when you attend the in-person check. The information on the first page is for students who obtained their visa outside the UK, and the second page outlines information for students who are able to apply for their visa from inside the UK.
As outlined in the attached, depending on your circumstances, you may need to send us information in advance prior to attending the in-person check. If the guidance asks you to forward information by email, please send this to email@example.com.
- Biometric Residence Permit (BRP)
If you have applied for your visa from overseas and received a vignette (sticker) in your passport you will need to collect your Biometric Residence Permit (BRP) after arrival in the UK. The BRP is evidence of your student immigration permission in the UK. EEA and Swiss nationals who used the ID Check app for their visa application will receive a digital status only and do not need to collect a BRP after arriving in the UK. For further information, and to arrange the collection of your BRP, please follow the guidance on the International Students website.
The decision letter notifying you of your successful visa application will confirm where you should collect your BRP. This will either be at a designated Post Office or via the University, depending on which you selected on the visa application form.
If you selected for your BRP to be delivered to the University in your visa application rather than the Post Office, you will collect this from us (The Tutorial Office at Wolfson College) after your other documents have been checked and we have received it. It is not necessary to collect it within 10 days of your arrival. Please note the BRP is not available for collection at the delivery address (Student Services Centre).
- Bank account
Please consult the University Guide on opening a UK bank account. You may need a letter from the College confirming your student status to set up a bank account. If this is the case, please complete the following request for banking letter form.
*Please note that Barclays have changed their policy. An international student can now only use a letter issued by the College to open a student account if they have lived in the UK for 3 years. With these rules in place, it is impossible for us to produce a letter for this bank for International students.
- Travelling to Cambridge
Please consult the University Guide for guidance on finding your way to Cambridge.
Living in Cambridge
All full-time students are required to live in Cambridge for the duration of their studies, unless they have received special dispensation. You can find accommodation and travel information below, as well as tips for registering with a Doctor/GP.
- College accommodation
Full-time registered postgraduate students will be eligible for accommodation for at least one year during their studies, whilst those who proceed to doctoral studies will be eligible for a further two years during their PhD. Part-time registered postgraduate students are not able to live on site permanently, but are eligible to stay for their residential courses and study time where availability allows. New Undergraduate students are eligible for accommodation during the first three years of their studies.
Being eligible for accommodation is not a guarantee of an offer for accommodation. Eligible students can apply for a College room and input their room preference via our Accommodation Portal. Rooms are allocated to new students once their offers are accepted, so the priority for new students is to meet the conditions of their offer as soon as possible. If you anticipate a delay to meeting your offer conditions, please consider reviewing the information below on Accommodation outside College.
- Accommodation outside College
New students can register with the University Accommodation Service for help in accessing a wide range of accommodation provided by the University and private registered partners. There are also a range of online platforms for finding private accommodation, including SpareRoom, Zoopla, Rightmove and On the Market.
New students may also choose to join one or more of the Facebook groups for finding housing and flatshares in Cambridge. The largest of these groups are listed below:
- Cambridge UK accommodation and flatshare
- Cambridge UK Houses/ Flats/ Rooms - Lettings + Sales
- Rooms, Houses, Flats for Rent in CAMBRIDGE, UK
- Property, houses, flats and rooms for rent in Cambridgeshire
Please exercise caution when arranging private accommodation outside of an official provider, such as the University Accommodation Service or registered Estate Agent. You should always visit the property and see the rental contract before making any payments. This will help you to avoid falling for potential online renting scams.
- Registering with a Doctor/GP
College strongly recommends all students to register with a local Doctor/GP for the duration of their time in Cambridge. The closest Doctors to Wolfson College is Newnham Walk Surgery (Google maps), and you can register online.
If you live outside of College, please use this form to request a letter for proof of College residency, which is required as part of your registration.If you live in College accommodation, proof of College residency can simply be a copy of the email sent from Jo Fisher, Wolfson Accommodation Officer, on receipt of your signed licence agreement. This has been confirmed with both the Wolfson Accommodation Officer and Newnham Walk Surgery Office Manager.
- Proof of student status
You may need a letter from the College proving that your are a student for a variety of reasons, including setting up a bank account, applying for Council Tax Exemption, or other procedures that require Student Certification.
To apply for a College letter for one of these purposes, please use this form.
- Getting around Cambridge
The University departments and the Colleges are not grouped in a single campus, but are scattered around the city in a range of locations. The interactive University map shows precise details and locations of Faculties, Colleges and Departments.
Cambridge is a surprisingly compact city. This means it's easy to get around, especially on foot or by bicycle. It takes around 15 minutes to travel from the outskirts of the city to the centre by bicycle. There are many bike shops in Cambridge, as well as a Cycle Campaign to support new or less confident cyclists.
The Universal Bus network connects the railway station, the city centre and West Cambridge, and is subsidised for all University members. E-scooters and taxis are also available.
Settling into College
All new students are highly recommended to head over to our Current Students page for more details about the range of facilities and services available at Wolfson: including dining, laundry, WiFi, and paying University fees, as well as information about College life, events, sports clubs and societies.