Here are some Oxford specific terms you may encounter at some point of your stay here.
Your account in College – covering food, drinks, stash, and, for those living in, rent.
The part of College facing onto The High.
An award earned for competing in Varsity sports (usually against Cambridge) at the highest level. Half-Blues are awarded for sports where the level of attainment is not deemed to be of national standard.
The Bodleian, Oxford’s main research library, between Broad Street and Radcliffe Square.
A college social, usually involving dancing and booze.
A tributary of the Isis, popular for punting. Also a student newspaper.
‘The Parliament of Dons’, comprised of all academic members of the University.
All those with an Oxford degree of some kind, or who are members of Congregation. Elects the Chancellor and Professor of Poetry.
Inter-collegiate sporting events.
The senior fellow responsible for discipline in College.
Fellow or tutor in the University.
Also known as Summer Eights, this is Oxford’s main intercollegiate rowing competition held at the end of Trinity term. Also a popular time for non-rowers to spend some time boozing by the river before finals.
Past Wolfson Hall, Emden contains accommodation, a games room, and the JCR.
The ceremony at the end of Trinity, awarding honourary doctoral degrees.
Member of a College’s Governing Body, usually an academic.
The three eight-week periods that make up the Oxford year. Each is preceded by noughth week, -1, and so on, and followed by ninth and tenth week.
Leaving Oxford, either at the end of term or at the completion of a degree.
Arriving at Oxford, at the start of a term or beginning of a degree.
Someone involved in student politics, most often in the Union or OUSU. Notorious for schmoozing, nefarious machinations etc, ‘hack’ is both a derogatory term and, for some, a badge of honour.
Dining in College. Formal Hall (with gowns) takes place once a week in Teddy Hall. Confusingly, the College as a whole is sometime known at The Hall.
Colloquial name for the High Street, running between Carfax and Magdalen.
Where Fellows dine during formal hall; postgraduates may join them for a small extra charge. Superior wine.
The second term of the academic year.
The part of the Thames that runs through Oxford, and also the name of the College accommodation on Iffley Road. Also a student magazine.
The Junior Common Room, primarily for undergraduates. The room itself is between Wolfson and Emden; it’s pretty grim, but does have the biggest telly in College.
Responsible for working with the Dean with regard to discipline and welfare issues.
The building beside Wolfson Hall.
Entrance to Teddy Hall from The High – the only way to get into, or out of, College after midnight.
Renting College accommodation.
Finding accommodation outside the University (in digs).
The summer vacation between Trinity and Michaelmas. For many postgraduates, not much of a holiday.
The ceremony in which you formally register as a member of the University.
The Middle Common Room, composed of postgraduates and fourth-year undergraduates. The room itself is on the North face of Front Quad, and is the focus of postgraduate life in College.
The first term of the academic year.
Norham Gardens (NSE)
College accommodation in North Oxford.
The Old Dining Hall, on the West face of Front Quad. One of Teddy Hall’s grander rooms.
Oxford University Student Union, responsible for representing student views in the University.
Because terms are so short, yuletide festivities in Oxford have to be brought forward; hence Oxmas, and mince pies and carolling at the end of November.
Your Pigeonhole, where post arrives. Located beside the Porter’s Lodge.
The intercollegiate postal service, organised by the Porters.
Primarily responsible for security, but also for the smooth running of College life more generally.
Found at the main entrance to College on Queen’s Lane, and home to our friendly Porters. Sometimes known at the Plodge.
Head of the College. Known as Master, Provost and various other titles at other colleges.
Senior officer responsible for enforcing discipline at a University, rather than College, level. They conduct examinations, and serve as the Fun Police during trashings.
Short for quadrangle, these are the grassy spaces many colleges are organised around. Teddy Hall only has one, known as Front Quad. You can’t walk on it.
The Radcliffe Camera, a landmark library on Radcliffe Square.
Temporary suspension from a degree, either for academic or disciplinary reasons; in earlier times, you’d be sent back to you country home as a result, hence rustication.
Examination Schools on the High, where exams take place and theses are submitted.
Cleaners, both within Teddy Hall and in College accommodation.
The Senior Common Room, for Fellows of the College and others with associated rights. The room itself is next to Wolfson Hall, and filled with expensive paintings.
St. Edmund Hall, obvs.
Permanent expulsion from Oxford, either for academic or disciplinary reasons. Postgraduates not exempt!
University or College attire, ranging from the laddiest rugby shirt to the most demure Chess Club hoody.
The Teddy Hall social secretary, responsible for arranging fun times for all.
The classic Oxford get-up of gown and mortar board. Not worn much these days, except for matriculation and exams.
A member of Cambridge University. “You’d rather be a leper than a tab”. Often referred to as being filthy.
The intercollegiate rowing competition in Hilary term, so called because it tends to be slower than Summer Eights (See Eights Week).
Sombre ceremony for those finishing final exams, usually involving covering people in silly string, champagne, flour etc.
The third term of the academic year.
The Oxford Union, a jumped-up debating club on Cornmarket.
The Uni Club
University sports club and bar located on Mansfield Road (not the same as the uni gym which is located on Iffley Rd)
The divisions of a term. See Full Term.
Accommodation block, on the right once you leave Front Quad.
William R. Miller
The College accommodation on Dawson Street.
The College dining hall, also known as “Ming”. Not to be confused with Wolfson College.