Latest news and events | University of Oxford
Portent of Spring, cherry blossom in Oxford
Portent of Spring, cherry blossom in Oxford
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Latest news and events

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TEDxOxford 'think again' conference 2018


TEDxOxford is an independently organised TED conference put on by University of Oxford students.

The theme for 2018 is ‘think again’ where speakers will talk on diverse issues with a specific focus on mental health. The 2018 event will take place on Sunday 4 March 2018 at the New Theatre, George Street. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit the TedXOxford website.


Summer school in Hong Kong


Looking for an opportunity to make a difference and expand your experience?

Applications are now open for next year’s Association of Commonwealth Universities (ACU) Summer School, taking place at the Chinese University of Hong Kong from 1-9 July 2018. Themed around ‘designing and creating sustainable communities’, the School will feature a programme of lectures by local and international speakers, skills development, social events, group work, networking opportunities, and field trips to key Hong Kong sites. Discounted registration rates and bursaries are available for students from member universities. For more information and to apply by Sunday 14 January 2018, visit the ACU website.

Christmas bulbs on a tree

Find out what's going on in Oxford over Christmas


There is lots of useful information available to students who are staying in Oxford over the Christmas period.

University, department and college opening hours

Central University

The University Offices, Examination Schools and most other central offices are closed from 17:00, Thursday  21 December until 09:00, Wednesday 3 January 2018.

The submissions desk at Examination Schools will also be closed during this period. If you are intending to submit work during this period by post or deposit in the Examination Schools post box you will not obtain proof of submission.

Student Information will be closed during this period. Enquiries will be dealt with in January 2018.

Departments and faculties

Opening times for departments and faculties may vary but most will be closed for a similar period as the central University (17:00, 21 December until 09:00, 2nd January 2018). Check the website for any possible variations.


Most colleges will keep the lodge open for enquiries throughout the Christmas period but check with the individual college for detailed opening hours, and for details of available facilities.

Sports and other social activities

Oxford University Sport (gym and swimming pool), Iffley Road

Closed from Saturday 23rd December  - Tuesday 2nd January

Oxford United Football Club vs Wigan Athletic

15:00, Saturday 23rd December, Kassam Stadium

Oxford United Football Club vs MK Dons

15:00, Monday 1st January, Kassam Stadium

Shops, supermarkets, restaurants and pubs

Most shops and supermarkets will have reduced hours and nearly all shops will be closed on Christmas Day. For supermarkets open around Christmas please check individual store websites.

Some restaurants and pubs are open on Christmas day, but many require advance booking, or are only open for drinks. Restaurant and pub suggestions include:

Oxford Ice rink

Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day: closed A full timetable is available online.

Phoenix Picture House Cinema

Christmas Day: closed The cinema is also closed from New Year's Day for 1 week. More information can be found on the cinema website.

Odeon Cinema - George Street and Magdalen Street

Christmas Day: closed  For information on show times, visit the Odeon website.

Ultimate Picture Palace

The Ultimate Picture Palace closes a week before Christmas, then reopens on Tuesday 9th January.

New Theatre Oxford “War Horse”

Wednesday 13th December - Saturday 6th January. Tickets are available online.

Oxford Playhouse: Panto “Jack and the Beanstalk”

This Oxford Playhouse show is running from now until Sunday 7th January.

Volunteering in Oxford

Volunteer with older people and keep them company in December. Contact to find out more.

Join the team getting involved with community gardening at Oxgrow. Contact Emma at for further information.

Students can also visit the Oxford Hub website for more opportunities.

Health services

The NHS Choices website provides lots of useful health information and advice. A guide to local NHS services is also available online.

NHS out-of-hours medical and dental service  

Banbury road medical centre

Monday 25th December:  Closed

Tuesday 26th December:  Closed 

Monday 1st January:  Closed In an emergency call 999.

For non-emergency services call 111 or 01865 515731, open throughout the Christmas period. Your call will be answered by a call centre who will triage your enquiry, and you will be contacted by an on-call GP. More information on out-of-hours services in Oxfordshire can be found on the Oxford Health website.


Chemists will work on a rota during the holiday period and if the chemist is closed, it will display the opening times and location of the nearest alternative Chemist that is open.

Cowley Pharmacy, 258 Cowley Road

Sunday 24th December: 7am – 9pm

Monday 25th December: 10:00-18:00

Tuesday 26th December: 12:00-18:00 Monday  1st  January: 12:00-18:00

Woodstock Road Chemist, 59 Woodstock Road

Sunday 24th December: 09.00 – 18.30

Monday 25th December: closed Boxing Day

Tuesday 26th December: closed

Sunday 31st December: 09.00- 18.30

Monday 1st January: closed

Sexual health and contraception

Emergency contraception is available at chemists. For people aged under 21 it is free of charge, if you are over 21 it is £26.00.

Oxfordshire Sexual Health Service at the Churchill Hospital, Old Road, Headington

Saturday 23rd - Wednesday 27 December: closed

Saturday 30th December: closes at 15:15

Monday  1st January: closed

Rectory Road

Saturday 23rd - Wednesday 27 December: closed

Monday  1st January: closed

View opening hours for all clinics.

Advice and support

Oxford University Counselling Service

The Counselling Service will close at 13:00 on Thursday 21st December, and will reopen at 09:00 on Wednesday 3rd January.


Closed from Monday 11th December to Monday 8th January

Talking Space

Closed from Monday 25th December - Tuesday 26th December

Open from Wednesday 27th December - Friday 29th December: 08.00 – 17.00

Closed on Monday 1st  January 2018


Open 24 hours throughout Christmas and New Year. Call: 116123, or email If English is not your first language, the Samaritans also provide support for non-English speakers.

For further details of emergency and help service contacts, visit the Help page of the Oxford Students website

Places of worship

Attending a traditional Christmas church service or carols can be an interesting way to experience British traditions, but there are also many other religious places to worship in Oxford.

You can find information on individual college Christmas services on the Oxford Students website.

A selection of places of worship in Oxford:

Student uses laptop in lecture

Embargoes on digital thesis submissions


There is a new flexible model for embargoes on digital thesis submission as detailed at Oxford Lib Guides.

When depositing the thesis, you may choose from three options, unless determined otherwise by the terms of agreement with your funding body or sponsor e.g. 1 year for RCUK funded students:

  • Open access (no embargo/immediate file release)
  • 1 year embargo period
  • 3 year embargo period

At the point of deposit you are expected to discuss whether or not an embargo might be necessary (i.e. self-justification) with your supervisor. Should they agree, you should select the relevant embargo period when depositing. If you require a period

If you require a period longer than the maximum offered above you will need to apply for dispensation from consultation using form GSO.3c.

Crossing three stepping stones in a river

Build a more sustainable Oxford with the Student Switch Off


The annual Student Switch Off competition is underway, with colleges competing in a series of energy-saving themed challenges.

The winning college gets a trophy and £250 towards an end-of-year event; there are also individual prizes. There are a range of environmentally-themed challenges, including coming up with suggestions for environmentally-themed songs; the best entries will win an NUS National Union of Students (NUS) extra card that gives money off everything from groceries to music subscriptions. To find out more about the various challenges and to get involved, visit the Student Switch Off Facebook page.


Mock exam and exam orientation dates 2018


Dates for the Hilary term and Trinity term 2018 mock exam and exam orientation sessions are now available.

To view these, visit the mock examinations web page.

These sessions are a great opportunity to familiarise yourself with exam regulations, venues and alternative arrangement adjustments (if these are applicable to you). You must join the Mock Exam WebLearn site in order to register for the sessions. Registration will open in the New Year and those registered to the site will receive a notification when sessions are available to book.

Ashmolean Supersonic

Seven amazing collections to discover for free


Did you know that students receive free admission to the University’s Gardens, Libraries and Museums?

Explore Britain’s oldest botanic garden, located just off the High Street, or go on a journey through religion at the Ashmolean Museum’s Imagining the Divine exhibition. Just show your University Card to enjoy free admission to both. Visit the Mindgrowing website for more information or sign up for the termly newsletter by emailing

Catching up with friends in the Dining Hall

Applications for graduate study: deadlines


Applying for a graduate course starting in 2018/19?

Check your deadline on the Graduate Admissions website as it will be Monday 8 or Friday 19 January 2018. You must submit your application by the relevant January deadline to be considered for scholarships. Visit the Fees, Funding and Scholarship search tool for a tailored list of scholarship opportunities and the Application Guide for how to apply. Still have questions? Contact the Graduate Admissions Office or call 01865 270059.

Volunteering with the elderly

Volunteering with the elderly


Volunteering is a great way to boost your CV, get to know the local community and make a difference.

LinkAges offer flexible volunteering opportunities to engage with elderly people in Oxford and help with the issues that they face. You can help older people stay connected by teaching basic IT skills, volunteering in care homes or helping at our one-off events. For more information and to sign up, visit the Oxford Hub website.

Mock examinations

Book your degree ceremony for 2018/19


If you're due to complete your course in the current academic year, you will receive an invitation to book your degree ceremony.

You will receive this email from Tuesday 28 November 2017 using Student Self Service if you are an undergraduate or graduate taught student. You can amend your choice of booking date until Wednesday 31 January 2018, after which time you will be able to amend only your contact details and accessibility requirements.

If you are a research student or on a modular programme you will receive an invitation upon being granted leave to supplicate. You can amend your choice of date or your requirements up to 60 days before your chosen ceremony date.

For more information, visit the Oxford Students website.


Kick off the new year with smarter research skills


Are you using the smartest tools and strategies to get organised?

Sharpen up your research skills in the new year, with a free Research Skills Toolkit workshop for 1st and 2nd year research students. The teams from IT Services and the Bodleian Libraries bring you a hands-on encounter with a range of tools for your study and research.

Book your place on one of the 2-hour sessions in week 1 of Hilary term (15 - 19 January 2018). Details and booking information can be found on the Research Skills Toolkit website. You can also follow @OxfResearchSkill on Twitter for updates.


Apply now to become a Laidlaw Scholar


The Laidlaw Scholars Undergraduate Research and Leadership Programme gives you the opportunity to carry out research on a topic of your choice at any world-leading institution.

Scholars get a stipend of up to £9,500 to conduct research and will gain leadership training that can lead to a professional qualification. To apply by Monday 8 January, visit the Careers Service website.


Diverse portraits now on display


Portraits celebrating Oxford’s diverse staff and former students are now on show at the Weston Library.

The Full Picture: Oxford in Portraits features more than 20 newly commissioned paintings, drawings and photographs highlighting the broad range of people represented around the University. It includes BBC journalist Reeta Chakrabarti, astrophysicist Dame Jocelyn Bell Burnell, human rights activist Kumi Naidoo, and film and television director Ken Loach.

The free exhibition runs until Sunday 7 January, after which the portraits will be hung in the Examination Schools, High Street. Dr Rebecca Surender, Advocate and Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Equality and Diversity, said: ‘It is hugely important for students and staff to feel at home at Oxford, and to feel inspired by people they can relate to. This series of portraits will broaden the range of people represented around the University. All of those nominated and selected to take part have made enormous contributions to Oxford life and to society more widely.’ For more information, visit the Equality and Diversity website.


Examination Schools - Michaelmas term closure dates


The Examination Schools, High Street will be closed from 5pm on Thursday 21 December until 8.30am on Wednesday 3 January.

If you are intending to submit work during this period, the building will be closed for submissions delivered in person, by post or by courier. Submissions made via the Examination Schools post box will not obtain proof of submission.


Alumni Christmas events


Many of the Oxford alumni groups are holding festive events which current students are invited to attend.

These provide the opportunity to meet and socialise with other current and alumni students whilst you are home for the holidays and get involved with festive activities including Christmas dinners and carol singing.

There will be events in London, various European locations, and the US. To find and sign up for events near you, visit the Alumni website.

Teenagers can often get around the internet filters, suggests study.

Help to shape the University’s websites


Student volunteers are needed to help gather insights into how the University’s various websites could be structured and organised.

The research will take the form of an on-line ‘card-sorting’ activity, and will help to inform the future of future University websites (excluding college sites).
If you are a current student who regularly uses the University’s websites and would like to participate, go to the Optimalsort site and follow the instructions before Friday 1 December. The exercise should take no longer than 10 to 15 minutes to complete.

Crossing three stepping stones in a river

Go International: stand out campaign


Universities UK International is launching a three-year campaign to increase the number of UK students studying, working and volunteering abroad as part of their studies.

Currently, just 6.6% of UK students complete placements abroad, despite strong evidence that mobility can increase students’ academic achievements and job prospects.

Here at Oxford, we help over 300 students each year to engage in study or work experience across 30 different countries. For more information about the opportunities available to you, visit the Oxford Students website.

Student studying

Introducing Workplace Finder


Did you know that the University has over 150 places for you to study, from college and department libraries to common rooms and cafés?

Workplace Finder is a University of Oxford Innovation Challenge project which provides a simple but comprehensive directory of the University's workspaces. Using the site, you can browse a map and photographs of potential workplaces, consult opening hours and input search criteria to find somewhere which fits your needs. For example, you might need to find a quiet workplace where you can bring a hot drink and plug in a laptop, or perhaps you want somewhere which will be open from 9am, has a livelier atmosphere and plenty of light.

Integration with Single Sign-On allows the Finder to tailor the list according to which places you have access to. To use the Finder, visit the IT Challenge website.

Group counselling

Sexual violence: prevention and support


Sexual violence is any unwanted sexual act.

The Oxford Students website contains advice and supportive resources for victims of sexual violence, including guidance on what to do immediately after an attack. To view this information, access psychological support offered by the University Counselling Service and contact trained Independent Sexual Violence Advisors in Oxford, visit the Oxford Students website.

There are also a number of specially trained people at the University you can talk to if you have experienced sexual violence recently or in the past. Email the Director of Student Welfare and Support Services team at for a confidential discussion.

DAS Study support

Digital entertainment and copyright advice


Whilst in residence, you may want to catch up on films, TV shows and music around your busy studies.

Subscription services such as Netflix, Amazon and iTunes are welcome for use over the University network, however there are forms of software and digital entertainment services that are not permitted.

It is recommended that you disable any software, other than legitimate subscription services, used for downloading or sharing digital entertainment. In the UK most digital entertainment is protected under copyright and downloading or sharing these files is not allowed. When agencies run scans on University networks it can result in user accounts being suspended and even fines and disciplinary actions being taken against you.

To ensure this doesn’t happen, stick to legitimate subscription services and contact your local IT support for guidance if you are unsure whether a particular piece of software is ok.


For information relating to the Oxford Students website, contact Academic Administration Division Communications by calling 01865 284847 or emailing