A quad and cloisters in St John's College
The Cloisters in Canterbury Quad, St John's College.
(Image credit: Greg Smolonski / Oxford University Images).

St John's College

About the college

St John’s College is proud of its reputation for academic excellence within a vibrant, supportive and socially diverse community.

It is an extremely popular college for graduates, who make up approximately 40% of the student community.

The college places a high value on the contributions made by graduate students. Interaction between graduates and full-time academics is warmly encouraged and the College Advisor system, independent of academic supervision, fosters close links with the Senior Common Room (SCR). The Fellow for Graduates hosts regular events throughout the year, including lecture suppers, subject dinners and drinks parties.

In addition to offering a generous number of scholarships in partnership with the University, St John’s provides financial support in the form of various grants and bursaries.

Please note that applications are not accepted for part-time study at St John's College.

College tour

College facilities

Library and IT services

In 2019 St John's opened a new library and study centre equipped with 90 study seats and multiple seminar rooms. There is also a specialised law library for law students.

Wireless networking is available across College and most of the external housing.  Almost all student rooms also have high speed wired network connections.

There are resource rooms within the college, including one which is for use by graduate students only, located in the MCR, which can be used for study. Most student rooms have network connections. College provides free mono printing (for academic purposes) and paid colour printing is also available. There is a printer just for graduate use in the MCR building. Many teaching and some study spaces have interactive displays which can be used as whiteboards or for showing presentations.

Sport, music and college facilities

Students at St John’s enjoy playing a diverse range of sports within College and for the University, and many of the College’s sports facilities are of a professional standard. The MCR run various teams and sports, specifically for graduates, in addition to those of the college. In College there are two fully equipped gyms, a table tennis room, two squash courts and a croquet lawn. A third specialised gym is used for training by rowers. The large College Sports Ground and Pavilion provides excellent playing, changing and socialising facilities, and on the River Thames the Boathouse is fully equipped for rowers.

St John’s students partake in a lively mix of music and drama events in college. The college hosts regular concerts, has a number of well-equipped music rooms, a joint orchestra with St Anne’s College and a chapel choir. 

The Oxford Alternative Orchestra is also based at St John's.

The College is active in promoting the visual arts, through commissions, exhibitions and a programme of Artists-in-Residence.

St John’s College Chapel welcomes all members of college, and all are encouraged to enjoy the possibility that the Chapel and its services offer for reflection. Members of every Christian denomination, as well as those with no Christian faith, are valued participants in all aspects of Chapel life.

Our Bainton Road Nursery was established in November 2016. It is primarily for the fellows, students, lecturers and staff of St Johns College. Early enquiries are encouraged as there is usually a waiting list. 

Facilities for disabled students

St John’s College is committed to being an open and inclusive community where everyone has access to the support they need to succeed. The college welcomes students with any kind of visible or invisible disabilities and works closely with them to ensure they can participate in college life as fully as possible. Many of the buildings are accessible to those with physical disabilities. There are several accessible bedrooms on the main College site, two of which have access to a kitchen which has been adapted to the needs of students with visual impairments.

Further information about building accessibility is available through the college website. Please contact the College Disability Co-ordinator about any specific accessibility requirements. 


The college has a very active Middle Common Room (MCR) committee who organise a wide range of social and intellectual activities for graduate students including guest night dinners, excursions, film nights and bops.

The MCR is located in a modern building which includes a resource room, television room, kitchen and a large function space where many events are held. The international nature of the graduate community and the organisational skills and enthusiasm of the MCR committee ensure that new members are made to feel immediately at home.

Accommodation and meals


Single room accommodation is offered to students for their first year of graduate study.  Most single rooms are on campus or in central locations which are just a short walk from the college and the city centre.

The college does offer couples and family accommodation; however, availability is limited, so early applications are recommended. Most of these flats are nearby to the college, around fifteen minutes' walk.

Rooms and Flats may also be available in subsequent years, via a ballot run by the MCR.


Students can eat breakfast, lunch and dinner in the beautiful Hall in College. The menu is varied and healthy.

During the day the spacious and modern Kendrew Café is open for hot, healthy meals and snacks and for socialising, while in the evening the lively College Bar is a popular venue.

Most students also have access to kitchen facilities if they wish to prepare their own food.


This college accepts graduate students for the following courses:

Please note that not all subjects areas or streams of a particular course may be offered by this college. Please see the college information on the relevant course page for further details. For a comprehensive list of all graduate courses available at the University of Oxford, please refer to our courses A-Z listing


The college is centrally located and very close to the Bodleian and Taylor Institution libraries and to the Science Area.

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