Pre-arrival information for students

Starting a graduate degree is exciting, and at times can be a little overwhelming. Below, we've listed some things you should do before you join us, as you arrive in Oxford, and during your first few weeks here. 

Important Dates for the 2023/24 academic year

  • You'll need to arrive in Oxford by Sunday 1st October 2023, although some courses may require early arrival.
  • Freshers' Week is Monday 2nd - Saturday 7th October, where a variety of induction events will happen in College and at your department.
  • Freshers Dinners will take place on Wednesday 4th October and Thursday 5th October, at the Museum of Natural History, where you'll have a chance to meet your College Advisor over a drinks reception and dinner (you will be told which dinner to attend).
  • Matriculation will be on Saturday 14th October and is a ceremony that all students new to Oxford must attend.

If you have any questions, please do not hestiate to get in touch by emailing

Check out the University's guidance for new studentsnew international students and information for students with families.  
Ensure you have returned your University Card form. Your department will send you the form once you have met your conditions. Your University Card will be sent to College where you will pick it up when you come for your enrolment, or when you arrive at Farndon Court. Please note that the cards are rarely printed more than two weeks in advance of your course start date. If you need access to College accommodation before then, please email
Once your card form is processed, you will receive your IT activation details by email. Make sure to familiarise yourself with University IT and what IT kit to bring (NB: Your department may advise additional requirements. Please check with your department).
Set-up your University wireless access. This is know as Eduroam. Most college and University buildings use this for their wireless access, meaning you'll be able to connect to wifi using the same network in College, at your Department, and across the city. If you have any problems, please contact
Start your University registration by logging in using your university Self-Service account. You will complete your enrolment when you register in person at college when you arrive.
Ensure that you have the necessary visa to enter the UK and check the entry procedures for entering England. If you need a student visa, your department will issue you with a CAS (Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies) number. You will need to collect your BRP (Biometric Residence Permit) from the Post Office.
Read the College student handbook and contract.
Make sure that you've signed up with a GP (General Practitioner), so you'll be able to access healthcare via the NHS if and when you need it. Find out what a GP does for you, register with a GP (this is essential) and ensure you are immunisations are up to date.
Set-up a UK bank account. Contact for proof of enrolment and accommodation. 
If you need it, familiarise yourself with the Disability Advisory Service. We recommend that you speak to them sooner rather than later if you think you'd benefit from their support! You can also find more information about the disability and welfare support Reuben can offer here.
Read the welcome letter from the 2022-23 Graduate President.
Read up on academic dress, which you will need for matriculation at the end of 1st Week. You will need an advanced students gown (also known as the Graduate gown), which is worn by those taking postgraduate taught or research degrees. This is a black gown made of cotton or synthetic material of the same style as the Commoners' gown, but reaches to the knees of the wearer.
Find out more about Oxford's Student Union - they'll be adding info about various Fresher's events closer to the time.
Spend some time reading up on this Oxford glossary. At the University, we use a range of unusual and quite antiquated vocabulary, and whilst you'll get used to it quickly, it's worth giving yourself a head start!


How to get to Oxford (2023 link to follow). If you are arriving at Heathrow or Gatwick, we recommend that you use the Airline Bus. You can find more detail on the University's International Students page.
Pick-up your BRP permit at the post-office if you are an international student.
Complete registration by meeting with a member of the Academic Office. Dates and times for registration sessions will be confirmed in the summer.
Upload a copy of your passport and visa/BRP permit onto the secure portal. Further details will be provided with registration instructions.

Find your way around Oxford Libraries, Colleges and Departments. You can find useful information about subject and research guides at the libraries here.

Bodleian Libraries: Getting started: Taught Course Students and Research postgraduates

Familiarise yourself with the locations of Linacre College, Farndon Court and South Lodge (Academic Office).
Familiarise yourself with the facilities at Linacre College, such as the dining hall, gym, music room, and library.  
Find out what support will be available to you while you are here at Reuben.  
Check out Blackwell's bookshop 
Once you have your Reuben email account, familiarise yourself with InkPath, our event booking tool. You'll be using InkPath to book onto a variety of College events. You can find a guide to creating an account on Inkpath here.
If you need furniture for your room, we recommend checking out local charity shops. In Cowley (via the 1, 5, or 10 buses from town), you can find the Oxfam Superstore and Emmaus, and up in Cowley (via the 8, 9, U1/400 or 280 buses from town), you can find Helen and Douglas House.


Make sure you're available for matriculation. Keep an eye out for emails on timings. All students are welcome to the celebratory events of the day, but only those eligible can attend the ceremony itself. 
Cycling is the quickest way to get around in Oxford.  Please refer to this travelling by bicycle page prepared by the university, and read this letter from the University's Travel Officer. There are many bicycle shops in Oxford, one on Walton Street, in Summertown and on Cowley Road. If you have not cycled recently or unfamiliar with cycling on roads with traffic, it is worth taking up the free training offered on the website.  
Arrange a one-to-one meeting with your College Advisor. You will be informed who your advisor is before the Fresher's dinner and will quite probably meet them there.
Look at the welfare structures available, including the Counselling services, Disability Advisory Servicepeer supporters, and within college, Welfare Dean.
Know who to contact if you need help.
If you are eligible, register to vote
Attend the Fresher's Fair to learn more about the various societies and sporting groups at Oxford, and find out about extracurricular opportunities. (There's usually free pizza, too!)

The organisation of graduate students’ Bodleian Libraries induction is carried out by each subject library in coordination with their relevant department/faculty. Incoming students at Reuben College should receive through their department/faculty details of their Bodleian Libraries induction. In the meantime, lots of useful information about the University central and subject libraries, particularly for students on taught courses, is available here.