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Durham University

Colleges & wider student experience

Postgraduate allocation process

The college allocation process will begin from July time.



All our colleges are small, thriving communities with many fantastic opportunities to participate and engage with college and university life. Each of our colleges will give every new student member a warm and friendly welcome that will last a lifetime.

Our postgraduate college allocation process for full time students is designed to be open, fair and transparent. Colleges are multidisciplinary, international and scholarly environments and we ensure these diverse postgraduate communities are maintained when allocating for college membership with the use of an automated algorithm.

In the first instance the process will always look to maximise the number of applicants allocated to a college of their preference. The algorithm then uses college quotas for:

- Department
- Level (taught or research)
- Fee status (Home, EU, Islands and Overseas)

This ensures an inclusive process for all applicants with no exceptions.


The colleges offer consistent levels of development and support, and we aspire to create diverse communities that reflect our core value of inclusivity. We receive thousands of applications each year and our unique collegiate system is a core part of our student experience. We have one of the lowest drop-out rates of all UK universities and high levels of student satisfaction.