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Durham University

Josephine Butler

Postgraduate Life

Every Durham University postgraduate student is a member of a college - a supportive, diverse community of students and staff from across the University.

Each college has its own distinctive character defined by its buildings, traditions and people and each offers an excellent range of facilities for study, sports, socialising and relaxing. As well as the practical facilities colleges provide, they offer opportunities to develop your personal effectiveness, explore alternative approaches and create a 'home' away from home. Whilst all your teaching will be delivered via your academic department, your college is a place where you can broaden your horizons through talks and other scholarly events. Whether you live in college, out in town or in your own home, you still benefit from the services and opportunities on offer in your college.

About Josephine Butler College

We are a modern yet mature college that provides you with the space and support to grow and develop at your own pace. We have excellent facilities including a large multi-purpose bar and study space, outdoor multi-use games area, gym, music room and post-graduate only lounge. We are also an environmentally conscious college, and we take care of our beautiful green grounds and wider environment. And we are also a local college, with strong connections to the local community through outreach and volunteering projects. You can find out more about Butler here.

Postgraduate Community

Postgraduates are a central part of the Butler community: we have a lively MCR community from across all disciplines; we have staff tasked with enhancing your scholarly life at the college and supporting you as a student and we foster an engaging intellectual and scholarly community through a range of events. In particular, we hold regular 'Scholars' Suppers' for our postgraduate community where we will invite you to dine together in a scholarly atmosphere to get to know each other, college officers and academics both from your department and across the wider university. Finally, because the pre-sessional students are in residence over the summer, we are a year-round college, holding a range of events and activities throughout the summer months.

Butler MCR

Our MCR (the Middle Common Room) is an organisation run by postgraduate students, for postgraduate students. It puts on events and organises gatherings of postgraduate students, some of which are social and others are designed to encourage reflection and discussion between students with different scholarly interests. Our MCR and JCR (Junior Common Room) work closely together and postgraduates are welcome at all college events, and are actively encouraged to join college-wide sports clubs, societies, community volunteering groups and charity fundraising schemes.

Applying to Butler

College membership and accommodation for postgraduates is coordinated through the central Accommodation and Allocations Office. Should you wish to be considered for membership and/or accommodation within College then it is necessary for you to accept the offer of a place at the University first. More information can be found on our FAQs page. If you would like to speak to a current Butler postgraduate student to find out more about what being a part of the College or living in Durham is like before applying, please contact and we will try to help you.