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Faculty of Philosophy




Faculty of Philosophy – who we are

For lists of the Faculty's teaching and Research Staff, and Support Staff, please see the faculty website:

All postgraduate students belong to a College. The Colleges are responsible for the accommodation and welfare of postgraduate students, for their social, medical, legal and financial arrangements, and for presenting them for University Degrees. Colleges are not directly concerned with supervising or assessing postgraduate students’ work, but they are kept informed of their students’ progress and may, should the need arise, give help or advice, or make representations on students’ behalf to their supervisors, their Degree Committee or the Student Registry.

Student Registry

The Student Registry is formally responsible for seeing that the relevant regulations are observed, receiving and acting on reports and recommendations from supervisors, examiners and Degree Committees, and approving the award of some postgraduate Degrees.

The Student Registry is located at The Student Services Centre, New Museums Site, Cambridge, CB2 3PT. Postgraduate Students will normally deal directly with the Student Registry only when applying formally for something (e.g. to work away from Cambridge, to intermit your research, or to defer your submission date). Most of these requests can be processed via your Self-Service page on CamSIS, without actually visiting the Student Registry. (For this you will need your ‘Raven’ password, supplied to new postgraduate students by the Computing Service.) See the following web page: for further details on applying for changes in circumstances.

The Philosophy Degree Committee

The Degree Committee of the Philosophy Faculty is responsible to the Student Registry for organising and monitoring the work of postgraduate students in Philosophy, and is the University body with which Philosophy postgraduate students are most directly concerned. It comprises the Faculty’s Professors, Readers, and Lecturers, together with representatives of related subjects, and meets twice each term.  

Among other responsibilities, the Degree Committee appoints a Supervisor (PhD students) or Advisor (MPhil students) for each of the Faculty's postgraduate students. Supervisors and Advisors report on their students' progress to the Degree Committee and to the Student Registry, once a term. The Degree Committee reviews students’ progress in the light of these reports, and decides when and for what degrees they shall become – or continue to be – registered as candidates.  It also appoints examiners for the various essays, dissertations and theses that postgraduate students are required to submit, and makes recommendations to the Student Registry about award of degrees, on the basis of reports from those examiners.

Enquiries about Degree Committee business should be directed in the first instance to the Postgraduate Secretary. Official correspondence with the Committee should be addressed to the Secretary of the Degree Committee at the Philosophy Postgraduate Office.

 Faculty Board

Like other Faculties in the University, Philosophy is run by its Faculty Board, which meets twice a term (on the same day as the Degree Committee).  The membership largely overlaps with the Degree Committee, but also includes three student members (two undergraduates and one postgraduate), who are elected in the middle of each Michaelmas Term. The Faculty Board sets the regulations and syllabuses for the University’s postgraduate and undergraduate courses in Philosophy, arranges lectures and seminars accordingly, and organises the Philosophy Tripos (undergraduate) examinations.


The Postgraduate Representative on Faculty Board is elected from among the postgraduate students of the Faculty. All postgraduates are eligible for this post. The representative is your direct link to the official running of the Faculty, and is there to help and advise you. If you have any views or queries, please discuss them with your representative first. They can then decide whether to take the matter further to the Staff-Student Committee or to the Faculty Board itself. Your representative is also responsible for organising social events for postgraduates throughout the academic year. Further details on student representation within the Faculty are here:


Library Committee

Student Representatives are also invited to attend the annual Library Committee meeting, chaired by your Philosophy Librarian, to pass on student's feedback and suggestions. These meetings usually take place in Lent term and provide a forum for key stakeholders within the Faculty to help shape the ongoing development of Caismir Lewy Library's collections, services and spaces to meet evolving learning, teaching and research needs. 


 Staff/Student Committee

All philosophy students are automatically members of this Committee, which is a forum for discussing matters that affect both undergraduate and postgraduate students in the Faculty. The Committee is the route by which students are kept abreast of how the Faculty is run, and students are encouraged to participate in decision making.  There are three meetings a year, normally one per term, and they tend to fall between Faculty Board meetings, so that relevant matters from the Faculty Board can be discussed at the Student-Staff Committee and vice-versa. It is useful to have representatives from amongst the MPhil and the PhD students.

Working environment

The University is dedicated to creating and maintaining a safe, welcoming, inclusive and diverse community which nurtures a healthy environment and culture of mutual respect and consideration, allowing all members to thrive without fear of harassment, bullying, discrimination, sexual violence, abuse, coercive behaviours or related misconduct.  

All students and staff are expected to be aware of the University’s codes of practice regarding Dignity@Work, and bullying and harassment, which can be found on the following web pages:

The Office for Student Conduct, Complaints and Appeals has the following policy on student harassment & sexual misconduct:

Racial and sexual harassment

The University is committed to creating and maintaining a working environment free of all forms of unlawful discrimination, including racial and sexual harassment. The Faculty strongly endorses this position, and takes these matters very seriously. The Faculty's adviser on racial and sexual harassment is Professor Alexander Bird, and anyone with any concerns about harassment issues should consult him (, another member of the faculty, if they feel more comfortable approaching them, or any other of the sources of help mentioned in the Dignity @ Work Policy:  

Gender Champion

The Faculty's Gender Champion is Dr Sarah Fine. Anyone with any concerns about gender issues within the Faculty should contact Dr Fine.

Welfare for Students

The following Faculty webpage has more information and weblinks that should be helpful for students: