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Academic Division

Students and academic sitting on sofas chatting in a modern university building

Purpose: Attracting and supporting the admission of a diverse body of undergraduate and postgraduate students and equipping them with the skills and capacity to successfully transition into their chosen subject discipline. 


Widening Participation and NEACO 

The Widening Participation team run a wide range of outreach activities and programmes which aim to provide prospective applicants and their supporters, from a diverse range of underrepresented groups across the UK, with the insight and understanding to make informed and competitive university applications. A full list of outreach activity run by the team can be found on the Undergraduate Study website. The team also supports Colleges and departments of the University with training and development around widening participation and outreach. 

The Network for East Anglican Collaborative Outreach (neaco) is a collaborative project led by the Widening Participation team. It is part of a national initiative to support young people from underrepresented neighbourhoods to progress into higher education. All universities and Further Education colleges in East Anglia are partners in the initiative, working closely with dozens of schools and other organisations.

Student Fees and Funding 

The Student Funding and Fee Policy Team support a wide range of funding activities for the Collegiate University. This includes administering the Cambridge Bursary Scheme for undergraduate students and various Government Loans schemes (in particular UK and US) available to students at all levels of study.

The team provides guidance and quality assurance for Research Council studentships for postgraduate research students. The team disburses financial assistance funds and certain University Trust funds and prizes. We are proud to administer the prestigious Harding Distinguished Postgraduate Scholarship Programme and Mastercard Foundation Scholarship Programme. We are leading a project that will transform the postgraduate applicant experience of applying to Cambridge for funding.

Undergraduate Admissions and Data Services  

The Admissions and Data Services (ADS) team supports the Colleges with a range of undergraduate admissions processes, including the collation of data from applicants, provision (in partnership with UIS) of the key digital systems that Colleges use to assess applicants and make admissions decisions, the organisation of the Winter, Summer and August Reconsideration Pools, and receipt and processing of the public examination results upon which offers are based.  

ADS provides administrative and policy development support for the committees and working groups that coordinate undergraduate admissions policy and delivery. The team also has a Research Unit which currently focuses on admissions research, on-course research (e.g. attainment and completion), and evaluating and measuring the impact of our widening participation and outreach activities. 

Postgraduate Admissions Office

The Postgraduate Admissions Office oversees and co-ordinates the admission of postgraduate students to the University, receiving and processing nearly 30,000 postgraduate applications each year. This includes setting and communicating postgraduate admissions policy and practice; managing postgraduate admissions enquiries; providing support to all the faculties and departments of the University and Cambridge Colleges to ensure a consistent and quality postgraduate admissions service; maintaining supporting admissions systems; producing management information and statistics; ensuring quality admission data.

The office is responsible for ensuring minimum University standards are met when making the formal offer of admission, setting appropriate offer conditions, processing documents received to meet those conditions, confirming the admission, and ensuring admitted applicants are compliant with visa sponsorship requirements. It is governed by the Postgraduate Admissions Committee.   

Cambridge Foundation Year 

The Foundation Year team deliver the University of Cambridge Foundation Year programme. This a unique course intended to provide a stepping stone to Cambridge for students who have been prevented from realising their potential due to educational disadvantage or disruption. The team delivers all aspects of this programme, from coordinating admissions, designing and delivering the teaching and assessment, and supporting progression from the course to future study whether at Cambridge or elsewhere.

The team includes both administrative staff and teaching staff. We work closely with colleagues from across participating Colleges and Faculties/Departments, as well as other teams in Student Access and Admissions and other sections of Education Services.

Student Recruitment and Marketing 

The Student Recruitment and Marketing team lead on information, resources, events and activity for prospective undergraduate and postgraduate students and their supporters.

Working with students from all backgrounds both in the UK and internationally, the team give prospective students the information they need to make an informed choice about applying to Cambridge and to support them through the process. This includes developing the UG and PG Study websites and virtual tour, meeting students in the UK and internationally and delivering events in Cambridge, amongst a wide range of other activities. 

The team is split into three sub-teams; International, Marketing, and UK and Events.