University of Oxford

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Coordinates: 51 ° 45 ′ 40 "  N , 1 ° 15 ′ 12"  W.

University of Oxford
motto Dominus Illuminatio Mea
German: The Lord enlighten me (Psalm 27: 1)
founding circa 1096
Sponsorship state
place Oxford
country United KingdomUnited Kingdom United Kingdom
management Lord Chris Patten (Chancellor), Louise Richardson (Vice Chancellor)
Students 24,299 (as of December 2018)

Undergraduates : 11,930
Postgraduates : 11,813

Employee 14,478 (as of July 31, 2019)
Annual budget 2.45 billion. £ (Colleges only, 2018-2019)
Foundation assets 6.1 billion. £ (Including colleges as of July 31, 2019)
Networks IARU , LERU , Russell Group , EUA , Golden triangle , Universities UK

The University of Oxford (legally The Chancellor Masters and Scholars of the University of Oxford ) in Oxford ( England ) is one of the oldest and most prestigious universities in the world. The university is legally organized as a corporation.

It is the oldest university in the English-speaking world and has been documented to have existed since the 12th century. It is divided into 39 colleges and six permanent private halls. All colleges are self-governing institutions within the university which each control their own membership, internal structures and activities.

The university is ranked among the top universities by most international and UK rankings. Together with the University of Cambridge , Imperial College London , the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) and University College London (UCL), the University of Oxford forms the so-called super-elite group of G-5 universities in England, making it one of the top universities . She is a member of the Russell UK group of research universities.

Oxford has produced a handsome number of notable alumni, including 28 UK Prime Ministers and numerous international heads of state and government. As of November 2019, 55 Nobel Prize winners , 3 Fields Medalists and 6 Turing Prize winners have studied or worked at the university. University alumni have won 160 Olympic medals . Oxford is home to numerous scholarships, including the Rhodes Scholarship , one of the oldest international graduate scholarship programs.



Balliol College - one of the university's oldest inaugural colleges

The University of Oxford ( Latin : Universitas Oxoniensis ) has no known founding date. The oldest signs of teaching in Oxford are letters from a schoolmaster who began teaching there around 1096. The university expanded around 1167 when King Henry II banned the English from attending the University of Paris . With the University of Paris and the University of Bologna , Oxford is one of the oldest European universities. Historian Giraldus Cambrensis lectured at the university in 1188, and the first foreign scholar, Emo von Wittewierum , arrived in Oxford in 1190. The head of the university carries the title of Chancellor (German: Chancellor) since at least 1201. The University of Oxford received Royal Charter in 1248 during the reign of King Henry III .

Merton College Mob Quad - the oldest square in the university

One of the oldest documents on the university, moderated its revival after a falling out with the city, was drawn up by a legate of the Pope in 1214. The reason for this rift was an execution in 1208 or 1209, which is why some scholars fled to Cambridge and later founded the University of Cambridge . Since the establishment of the University of Cambridge, these two universities, collectively also known as Oxbridge , have shaped the intellectual life of Great Britain .

Students joined due to their geographical origin to two Nationes along which the North ( northerners or Boreales to which Englishmen were north of the river Trent and Scots) and the South ( southerners or Australes to which Englishmen south of the River Trent, Irish and Welsh were among ) represented. In later centuries, geographic origins continued to influence the affiliation of many students when membership in a college or hall at Oxford became common. In addition, members of many orders, including Dominicans , Franciscans , Carmelites, and Augustinians , settled in Oxford in the mid-13th century , and maintained accommodation or halls for students. Around the same time, private benefactors established colleges as independent teaching institutions. Among the earliest such benefactors were William of Durham, who founded University College in 1249 , and John Balliol , father of the future Scottish king and namesake of Balliol College . Walter of Merton , who later became Bishop of Rochester , developed a series of precepts for life at Merton College . This made it a model for such facilities in Oxford and at the University of Cambridge. After that, more and more students lived in colleges and not in halls and religious houses. In 1355, the most devastating conflict to date between students and citizens of the city occurred .

In 1333/1334 an attempt by some dissatisfied scholars to found a new university in Stamford, Lincolnshire was blocked by the universities of Oxford and Cambridge. Thereafter, no new universities were allowed to be founded in England until the 1820s. This gave Oxford and Cambridge a duopoly , which was unusual for large Western European countries.


In 1605, Oxford was still a walled city (the north is at the bottom of this map).
Divinity School - The university's oldest, remaining, purpose-built building

Renaissance values greatly influenced Oxford from the late 15th century onwards. Scholars of the time included William Grocyn , who helped revitalize Greek linguistics , and John Colet , an influential biblical scholar.

In the course of the English Reformation and its break with the Roman Catholic Church , some scholars from Oxford fled to continental Europe and settled there mainly at the University of Douai. Teaching at Oxford has been switched from the medieval, scholastic method to the methods of education of the Renaissance, although the university has suffered significant land and income losses. Oxford's reputation as a center of teaching declined in the Age of Enlightenment . Enrollments fell and classes were neglected. The Oxford, together with the University of Cambridge, enjoyed extensive freedoms and were elevated to a body by Elizabeth I in 1571 by the Oxford and Cambridge Act .

In 1636 William Laud , the University's Chancellor and Archbishop of Canterbury , codified the University's statutes. These were largely preserved until the middle of the 19th century. Laud was responsible for securing privileges for the University Press and made significant contributions to the Bodleian Library , the university's main library. From the formation of the Church of England through 1866, Church membership was a requirement for obtaining a bachelor's degree from the university. People of different faiths were only allowed to receive the Master of Arts in 1871.

The university was a royalist center during the English Civil War (1642–1649) , while the city supported the opposing parliamentarians . Charles I sought refuge in Christ Church and used the college as his residence during the Civil War. The loyalist rump parliament met in the dining hall of Christ Church . From the middle of the 18th century, however, the university hardly took part in political conflicts.

Founded in 1610, Wadham College was the college of Christopher Wren . Wren was part of a group of experimental scientists at Oxford, the Oxford Philosophical Club , which also included Robert Boyle and Robert Hooke in the 1650s . This group held regular meetings in Wadham under the direction of John Wilkins , and formed the nucleus that later formed the Royal Society .

Women and oxford

The first colleges for women
Lady Margaret Hall Talbot (cropped) .jpg
Somerville College (cropped) .jpg

Until 1878 women were banned from studying at Oxford colleges. The first women-only colleges were founded in 1878 with Lady Margaret Hall and in 1879 with Somerville College , ten years after the first women’s colleges were founded in Cambridge. Lady Margaret Hall and Somerville first opened their doors in 1879 to their first 21 students (12 from Somerville, 9 from Lady Margaret Hall) who had to attend lectures in rooms above an Oxford bakery. Another 25 students who lived at home or with friends founded the Society of Oxford Home Students , which developed into St Anne's College in 1952 .

At the end of the 19th century, St Hugh's College and St Hilda's College were founded . All of these colleges later became co-educational, beginning with Lady Margaret Hall and St. Anne's in 1979. As the last college for women only, St Hilda's has been accepting male applicants since 2008. At the beginning of the 20th century, Oxford and Cambridge were largely viewed as bastions of male privilege. The integration of women in Oxford was promoted during the First World War and women were accepted as equal medical students in 1916. In 1917 the university took over financial responsibility for exams taken by women.

It was not until October 7, 1920 that women were allowed to acquire the same academic degrees as their male fellow students. In 1927, the university's dons created a quota that limited the number of female students to a quarter of male students. This regulation was not lifted until 1957. Since at that time all Oxford colleges only accepted students of one gender, the number of female students was nevertheless limited by the capacity of the women's colleges. It was not until 1959 that the women's colleges were given the status of full university colleges. Several colleges were founded or helped shape by women, such as Balliol College and Wadham College .

In 1974, Brasenose , Hertford , Jesus , St Catherine’s and Wadham were the first men's colleges to allow women. The majority of men's colleges started their first female students in 1979. Christ Church followed in 1980 and Oriel was the last men's college to accept women in 1985. Most Oxford postgraduate colleges were established as co-educational institutions in the 20th century, with the exception of St. Antony's which was established as a men's college in 1950 and only began accepting women in 1962. The proportion of female students in Oxford was 51.2% in 2018. The proportion of women among professors was 19% in 2019.

In 1908 women were admitted to the Oxford Union . The first female president of the Oxford Union was Benazir Bhutto in 1977 , who studied at Lady Margaret Hall. On May 28, 2015, Louise Richardson was nominated as the university's next vice-chancellor. Subject to the approval of the Congregation, Richardson took office on January 1, 2016, to succeed Andrew Hamilton. This first nomination for a woman for this position is considered a milestone in the history of the university.

Academic profile


Percentage of students from public schools in Oxford and Cambridge

In 2018, out of 21,515 applicants, 3,840 applicants were admitted to undergraduate studies . With an admissions rate of 17.85%, Oxford University is one of the most selective in the UK. The total number of applications is growing annually and has increased by 15.8% since 2013. The courses with the most applicants per place between 2015 and 2018 were business and management (15.3 applicants per place), computer science (14.2 applicants per place) and medicine (10.7 applicants per place). In 2019, Germans formed the sixth largest group of applicants.

Students at Oxford are admitted from the individual colleges rather than the university itself. In the meantime, this system has changed for postgraduate students who are now admitted by the faculties. The university itself only performs administrative tasks.

The university's admissions process is considered to be one of the most demanding in the world. The preselection is based on achieved or expected exam results, school references and, in some subjects, on written admission tests or written work submitted by candidates. About 60% of applicants are shortlisted, although this varies depending on the degree program. If a large number of applicants for a course are shortlisted, students can be randomly assigned to another college that still has capacity for the selected course. The colleges then invite candidates to interviews, which take place for about three days in November or December. Most applicants are interviewed individually by college academics. Students outside Europe can conduct selection interviews online.

The results of the admissions process will be sent out by the colleges in early January. Every fourth successful candidate receives a place at a college to which they have not applied. For some courses, candidates can receive an "open offer" and are only assigned to a college in August.

The university is often criticized because it accepts a disproportionately large number of students from private schools . In 2016, Oxford University gave only 59% of its places to students in public schools, while around 93% of all UK students and 86% of UK senior high school students are taught in public schools. Oxford University spends over £ 6 million annually on programs to increase the number of applicants from under-represented populations.

In 2018, the university's annual admissions report found that eight colleges in Oxford have accepted fewer than three black applicants in the past three years.

Scholarships and financial support

Rhodes House - Home of the Rhodes Foundation, which awards the renowned Rhodes Scholarship

There are numerous options for students at Oxford to obtain financial assistance during their studies. Introduced in 2006, the Oxford Opportunity Bursaries is a university-wide, means-based scholarship that provides each UK student with up to £ 10.235 over three years. In addition, individual colleges offer scholarships to help their students. For postgraduate students, for example, the university offers the Rhodes Scholarship or the relatively new Weidenfeld Scholarship. Oxford also offers the Clarendon Scholarship , which is open to applicants of all nationalities. The Clarendon Scholarship is funded primarily by Oxford University Press in collaboration with a number of colleges and other partnerships. In 2016, Oxford University announced that it would offer its first free online course in partnership with a US online university network. The course is called "From Poverty to Prosperity: Understanding Economic Development" (German: "From poverty to prosperity: How can economic development be understood").


The Oxford University Press is the second oldest and currently the largest university press on the number of publications. More than 6,000 new books are published annually, including many reference, technical and academic works (such as the Oxford English Dictionary , the Concise Oxford English Dictionary, the Oxford World Classics, the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography and the Concise Dictionary of National Biography).


The focus of the undergraduate degree is on the tutorials , in which one to four students discuss their weekly work with an academic for an hour. Typically this is an essay (humanities, most social sciences, and some math, physical, and life sciences) or a problem (physics, mathematics, life sciences, and some social sciences). The university itself is responsible for conducting exams and awarding degrees. The undergraduate degree takes place over three eight-week academic trimesters: Michaelmas, Hilary and Trinity. Internally, the weeks in the trimesters begin on Sundays and are denoted numerically, with the first week being referred to as "first week" and the last week as "eight week". The total teaching time at Oxford is shorter than at most other UK universities and is less than half a year. However, students are also expected to do academic work during the three holiday periods (known as Christmas , Easter, and Long Vacations ).


Central administration

Wellington Square, the name of which has become synonymous with the university's central administration

The formal head of the university is the Chancellor , who is currently Chris Patten . As in most UK universities, the title of Chancellor is only symbolic and is not involved in the day-to-day running of the university. The Chancellor is elected by the members of the Convocation , a body made up of all university graduates, and remains in this office until his death.

The Vice Chancellor , currently Louise Richardson , is the de facto head of the university. Five Deputy Chancellors also have specific areas of responsibility: Education, Research, Planning and Resources, Development and External Relations, and Employees and Equal Opportunities. The University Council is the university's executive body, composed of the Vice Chancellor, Faculty Directors, student observers, and other members elected by the Congregation . The Congregation, also known as the "Parliament of the Dons ", consists of more than 3,700 members of the university's academic and administrative staff and is responsible for legislative matters: it discusses and promulgates the regulations proposed by the University Council.

Oxford University is a “public university” in the sense that it receives public funding, but it is also a “private university” in the sense that it is fully self-governing and could theoretically refuse public funding.

Colleges and Permanent Private Halls

The Great Hall of Christ Church - The dining rooms are a typical feature of Oxford colleges

To be a member of the university, all students and most academic staff must be members of a college. The University of Oxford consists of 39 colleges (including Reuben College, which will not accept students until 2021) and six Permanent Private Halls (PPHs), each of which controls their membership as well as internal structures and activities. Not all colleges offer all courses, but they usually cover a wide range of topics.

The list below shows the colleges:

The Permanent Private Halls were founded by various Christian denominations. One difference between a college and a PPH is that while the colleges are run by the college's scholars, the leadership of a PPH rests at least in part with the corresponding Christian denomination.

The "Permanent Private Halls" (PPH) are:


In 2017/18 the university had an income of £ 2,237 million ; The main sources were research grants (£ 579.1 million) and tuition fees (£ 332.5 million). The colleges had a total income of £ 492.9 million.

While the university has a larger annual income and operating budget, the colleges have a larger foundation capital: over £ 4.9 billion compared to the university’s £ 1.2 billion. The Central University's endowment assets , along with some colleges, are administered by the university's administrative office, Oxford University Endowment Management , established in 2007 . The university has made significant investments in fossil fuel companies and in 2014 began consultations on whether to follow the example of some US universities that have pledged to withdraw their investments in fossil fuel companies.

The college's total assets of £ 6.3 billion also exceed the university's total assets of £ 4.1 billion. The total of the colleges does not reflect all the assets of the colleges as they do not include the value of their historical buildings or cultural assets such as works of art and libraries.


Oxford is a member of the Russell Group of UK Research Universities , the G5, the League of European Research Universities and, since 2006, the International Alliance of Research Universities . It is also a core member of the Europaeum and part of the "golden triangle" (English: Golden Triangle ) research-intensive and elite UK universities.


Panorama of the University of Oxford (scrollable)

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main building

Sheldonian Theater - serves for concerts, lectures, matriculation and graduation parties

The university is a city ​​university and therefore does not have a main campus . Instead, colleges, faculties, student accommodation and other facilities are spread across the city center. The Oxford University Science Area , which is where most of the science faculties are located, looks most like a campus. The 4 hectares large Radcliffe Observatory Quarter in the northwest of the city is currently under construction.

The most iconic university buildings include the Radcliffe Camera , the Sheldonian Theater , which is used for music concerts, lectures and university ceremonies, and the Examination Schools , where exams and some lectures take place. The Church of St. Mary the Virgin was used for university ceremonies prior to the construction of the Sheldonian Theater. The Christ Church Cathedral is in a unique way both as a college chapel and a cathedral.

Between 2012 and 2013, the university built the controversial 4 to 5 story Castle Mill housing project overlooking Cripley Meadow and historic Port Meadow , which blocks the view of the towers of the city center. The construction project was called "Skyscraper next to Stonehenge ".


Botanical garden in autumn

The University Park are a 30-hectare parkland in the northeast of the city and is located near the Keble College , of Somerville College and Lady Margaret Hall . The park landscape is open to the public in daylight. The park not only offers gardens and exotic plants, but also numerous sports fields, which are used for official and unofficial tournaments, as well as the Genetic Garden, which is used to elucidate and investigate evolutionary processes.

The Botanic Gardens on the High Street are the oldest botanical gardens in Britain. On its 1.8 hectares there are over 8,000 different plant species. The garden is one of the most diverse and compact collections of plants in the world and includes specimens from over 90% of the higher plant families. The Harcourt Arboretum is a 53 hectare site which is 10 km south of the city and includes native trees and a 27 hectare meadow. The 4 km² Wytham Woods are owned by the university and used for climate change research and zoology .

Various parks open to the public are owned by the colleges, such as Bagley Wood or Christ Church Meadow .


Radcliffe Camera

The university maintains the largest university library system in the UK. With over 11 million volumes on 190 km shelves, the Bodleian Libraries Group, formerly Oxford University Library Service (OULS), is the second largest library in Great Britain after the British Library . The Bodleian is a legal deposit library , which means it is entitled to request a free copy of any book published in the UK. The Bodleian collection grows by five kilometers of shelves every year. The university's largest undergraduate college library is located at Somerville College .

The eponymous and best-known Bodleian Library , which is considered the most important research library of the university, was founded more than 400 years ago as the first public library in England. The Bodleian Library (internally called "the Bod") consists of the original Bodleian Library, which was founded in the Old Schools Quadrangle by Thomas Bodley in 1598 and opened in 1602, the Radcliffe Camera , the Clarendon Building and the Weston Library. A tunnel under Broad Street connects these buildings to Gladstone Link, which was opened to readers in 2011 and connects the Old Bodleian to the Radcliffe Camera.

The Bodleian Libraries Group, which was founded in 2000, consists of 28 libraries and combined the Bodleian Library with several specialist libraries. Some of these libraries were created by merging previously separate collections, including the Sackler Library , the Social Science Library, and the Radcliffe Science Library.

A new book depot opened in South Marston, Swindon in October 2010 . Recent construction projects include the renovation of the New Bodleian Building, which was renamed Weston Library when it reopened in 2015. The renovation was intended to provide better space for the library's numerous treasures (including a Shakespeare First Folio and a Gutenberg Bible ) as well as temporary exhibitions.

In 2004, the Bodleian participated in a mass digitization project with Google . One of the notable electronic resources of the Bodleian Group is the Electronic Enlightenment Project, which was awarded the 2010 Digital Prize by the British Society for Eighteenth-Century Studies.


Ashmolean Museum

Oxford has a number of museums and galleries that are open to the public free of charge. Founded in 1683, the Ashmolean Museum is the oldest museum in Britain and the oldest university museum in the world. It houses significant collections of art and archeology, including works by Michelangelo , Leonardo da Vinci , Turner and Picasso, as well as ancient treasures such as the Scorpion Macehead, the Parian Chronicle and the Alfred Jewel. It also contains a pristine Messiah Stradivarius violin , which is considered to be one of the best preserved examples.

The university's natural history museum houses the university's zoological , entomological and geological exhibits. It is located in a large neo-Gothic building on Parks Road in the university's science park. Its collection includes the skeletons of a Tyrannosaurus Rex and Triceratops , as well as the most complete remains of a dodo , which can be found worldwide. It also houses the "Simonyi Professorship for the Public Understanding of Science", which is currently held by Marcus du Sautoy .

Adjacent to the Natural History Museum is the Pitt Rivers Museum , founded in 1884 , in which the university's archaeological and anthropological exhibits are on display and currently comprises over 500,000 objects. As part of a donation from Augustus Pitt Rivers , the university set up a teaching position in anthropology, which is why the museum's staff have been involved in teaching anthropology at Oxford since its inception.

The History of Science Museum is located on Broad Street in the oldest remaining purpose-built museum building in the world. It contains 15,000 artifacts from ancient times to the 20th century, representing almost all aspects of the history of science. In the music faculty at St Aldate's is the Bate collection of musical instruments, which mainly consists of instruments from western classical music. The Christ Church Picture Gallery houses a collection of over 200 paintings by the old masters .

students life


A student in traditional subfusc

It is compulsory to wear academic clothing during exams, matriculation, disciplinary proceedings and visits by university officials. In Oxford this consists of a robe , the gown and subfusc , which is used to describe the formal clothing under the academic robe. Members of the British armed forces are allowed to wear their service uniform under their robes instead of the subfusc. In July 2012, the regulations on academic dress were changed to make it more inclusive for transgender people .

A referendum among the Oxford student body in 2015 found that 76% voted against voluntarily wearing academic attire during academic exams. The student body largely interpreted the referendum not as a vote for the voluntary wearing of academic clothing, but as a vote for its de facto abolition, since if only a minority were to take the exams without academic clothing, the rest would soon follow.

Other traditions and customs vary with each college. For example, some colleges have formal dinners up to six times a week, but others only occasionally. Most colleges require robes to be worn for formal dinners and grace to be said in Latin .

Commemoration Balls are balls held at colleges in the 9th week of the third trimester. These are held by different colleges each year, following a cycle in which each college holds a ball every three years. Tailcoat suits (English "white tie") or evening gowns are usually worn at the commemoration balls . Many other colleges hold smaller events during the year, known as summer balls or parties . These are usually held annually or irregularly and usually have a black dress code ("black tie").

Clubs and associations

Rowing in Oxford
Oxford Union Discussion Forum

Sports tournaments are played between college teams and are known as cupers (the term is also used for some non-athletic competitions). In addition, there are university-wide teams which play at a higher level. A special focus is on the annual tournaments against the University of Cambridge , whose famous Boat Race , an eighth race on the Thames since 1829, is seen by up to 15 million television viewers. This reflects the great importance of rowing for many at the university. Much attention is paid to the so-called intercollegial rowing regattas: the Christ Church Regatta , Torpids and Summer Eights . A “blue” is an award for those who compete in certain sports at the university level. In addition to traditional sports, there are also teams for activities like octopush and Quidditch .

There are two weekly student newspapers in Oxford: The Independent Cherwell and The Oxford Student. Other publications include Isis magazine, the satirical Oxymoron, and the Oxonian Review. The student radio station is Oxide Radio. Most colleges have chapel choirs. Music, theater, and other arts associations exist at both the college and university levels, such as the Oxford University Dramatic Society and Oxford Revue.

The Oxford Union (not to be confused with the Oxford University Student Union) hosts weekly debates and discussion forums with prominent speakers. The debating club, founded in 1823, is one of the oldest in the world.

Student councils

The Oxford University Student Union (OUSU) exists to represent students in university decisions and national higher education policy, as well as to provide them with services. The OUSU itself also reflects the college character of Oxford University and is both an association of more than 21,000 individual students of the university and the umbrella organization of the Common Rooms, which represent the individual colleges. The OUSU Executive Committee includes six full-time sabbatical officers, who usually work in the year after their final exams.

The importance of the colleges is so great that for many students the college JCR (Junior Common Room for Bachelor students) or the MCR (Middle Common Room for postgraduate students) is seen as more important than the OUSU. JCRs and MCRs each have a committee on which a president and other elected students represent their colleges. In addition, the Common Rooms organize events and have a budget that they can spend as they wish. The Common Rooms are funded by the colleges or, for example, student-run bars. Not all colleges use the JCR / MCR structure: for example, the entire student population of Wadham College is represented in a single common room.



Placements in international rankings
source 2021 2020 2019 2018 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 2007 2006 2005 2004 2003
QS World University Rankings 5 4th 5 6th 6th 6th 5 6th 5
Times Higher Education 1 1 1 1 2 3 2 2 4th 6th
Academic Ranking of World Universities 7th 7th 7th 7th 10 9 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 8th 9

Oxford University is considered one of the best in the world. In all three well-known British rankings, the university is in second place - behind the University of Cambridge, with individual subject groups at the top. The university is excellently placed in the leading international rankings. In the Times Higher Education Ranking, the university is number 1 worldwide in the QS World University Rankings and US News Best Global Universities is ranked 4th and 5th respectively. It is therefore the best European university in all three global rankings. In the Academic Ranking of World Universities, the university ranks 7th and is the second best university in Europe after Cambridge. In particular, the humanities and social sciences form the international top, ahead of the elite American universities.

Sexual harassment allegations

In 2015, six students filed a complaint against Oxford through sex law attorney and Oxford graduate Ann Olivarius, which The Times described as an "epidemic" of sexual misconduct. Oxford was also accused of confidentiality agreements to have used students reported the sexual harassment to silence. In 2020 it was reported that incidents of sexual violence and harassment increased 15-fold in Oxford.

Famous personalities

The university has produced a handsome number of celebrities. 28 British Prime Ministers have visited Oxford, including Margaret Thatcher , Tony Blair , David Cameron , Theresa May and Boris Johnson . Of all the post-war Prime Ministers, only Gordon Brown was educated at any university other than Oxford (the University of Edinburgh ), while James Callaghan and John Major never attended university. Over 100 Oxford alumni were elected to the House of Commons in 2010. This includes the current opposition leader Keir Starmer and numerous members of the cabinet and the shadow cabinet. In addition, over 140 Oxfords sit in the House of Lords .

At least 30 international heads of state have been trained at Oxford. Including numerous monarchs , five Australian Prime Ministers ( John Gorton , Malcolm Fraser , Bob Hawke , Tony Abbott and Malcolm Turnbull ), six Pakistani Prime Ministers ( Liaquat Ali Khan , Huseyn Shaheed Suhrawardy , Feroz Khan Noon , Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto , Benazir Bhutto and Imran Khan ) , two Canadian Prime Ministers ( Lester B. Pearson and John Turner ) and two Indian Prime Ministers ( Manmohan Singh and Indira Gandhi ). The former Federal President of the Federal Republic of Germany , Richard von Weizsäcker , is one of the German politicians who studied at Oxford . The former President of the German Bundestag , Norbert Lammert , spent a semester in Oxford.

The university also produced 55 Nobel Prize winners . These include eleven Nobel Prize winners in chemistry , five in physics and sixteen in medicine . In addition, the university has twelve saints (three are recognized only by the Catholic Church, but not by the Anglican Church), 86 archbishops and 19 cardinals among its alumni.


  • Oxford's patron saint is Saint Frideswida .
  • The Oxford soccer team have made three FA Cup finals . In 1874 the only “real” university team succeeded in winning the cup in this prestigious competition with a 2-0 win over the Royal Engineers.
  • The University of Oxford is used as " Hogwarts " for the Harry Potter series, but mostly for the inner part of "Hogwarts", as the fictional castle is made up of many castles across Great Britain. The main component is nevertheless the University of Oxford.
  • In 2005 the World Memory Championship took place at Oxford University.
  • The former University of Oxford ice hockey team won the Spengler Cup in Switzerland four times .
  • Oxford University is the place of work of the fictional archaeologist Indiana Jones from the film series of the same name.


  • Laurence WB Brockliss: The University of Oxford. A history . Oxford University Press, Oxford 2016, ISBN 978-0-19-924356-3 .
  • Peter Sager : Oxford and Cambridge. A cultural story . 1st edition. Schöffling, Frankfurt am Main 2004, ISBN 3-89561-671-0 .
  • Fabian Pregel: Oxford . Goldfinch, Hamburg 2007, ISBN 978-3-940258-04-5 .
  • Carl von Siemens: Little gentlemen. A German in Oxford . Scherz, Frankfurt am Main 2010, ISBN 978-3-502-15159-3 .
  • FE Robinson's 'College Histories Series' on the Internet Archive
  • Hastings Rashdall, Robert Sangster Rait: New College. Publisher FE Robinson & Co., London 1901 ( Text Archive - Internet Archive ).
  • The University of Oxford in: HE Salter and Mary D. Lobel (Eds.): A History of the County of Oxford: Volume 3: The University of Oxford (1954), pp. 1-38.
  • Chancellors of the University of Oxford in: HE Salter and Mary D. Lobel (Eds.): A History of the County of Oxford: Volume 3: The University of Oxford (1954) pp. 38-39.
  • Joseph Foster: Alumni Oxonienses; the members of the University of Oxford, [later Ser.] 1715-1886; their parentage, birthplace, and year of birth, with a record of their degrees; being the matriculation of the University. 4 volumes, Parker, Oxford 1888.

Web links

Commons : Oxford University  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  2. Overview of the students
  4. a b
  5. ^ The University as a charity | University of Oxford. Retrieved June 7, 2020 .
  6. ^ Colleges and Halls AZ (English) - List at the University of Oxford , April 14, 2009
  7. What are Oxford colleges? | University of Oxford. Retrieved June 7, 2020 .
  8. ^ World University Rankings. August 20, 2019, accessed June 7, 2020 .
  9. ARWU World University Rankings 2019. Accessed June 7, 2020 .
  10. QS World University Rankings 2020. June 5, 2019, accessed June 7, 2020 .
  12. ^ Russell Group | Our universities. Accessed June 7, 2020 (English).
  13. a b British Prime Ministers | University of Oxford. Retrieved June 7, 2020 .
  14. a b Famous Oxonians | University of Oxford. Retrieved June 7, 2020 .
  15. a b Award winners | University of Oxford. Retrieved June 7, 2020 .
  16. ^ Oxford at the Olympics | University of Oxford. Retrieved June 7, 2020 .
  17. ^ History of the Rhodes Trust - Rhodes Trust. Accessed June 7, 2020 (English).
  18. ^ Preface: Constitution and Statute-making Powers of the University. In: University of Oxford. Archived from the original on January 4, 2014 ; Retrieved June 10, 2020 (UK English).
  19. ^ The early Oxford Schools . In: The History of the University of Oxford . Volume I. Oxford University Press , 1984, ISBN 0-19-951011-3 , From Schools to University ( limited preview in Google Book Search).
  20. ^ Introduction and history. University of Oxford, archived from the original on October 20, 2014 ; Retrieved June 10, 2020 (UK English).
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