A statement from Professor Graham Virgo, Senior Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Education), regarding the academic year 2020-21

The University and the Colleges will welcome as many students as possible to Cambridge for the start of the next academic year, guided always by advice from Public Health England. We are committed to continuing to deliver high quality education to all our students and to delivering a rich student experience, while ensuring that we respond effectively to the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Small group teaching – supervisions, seminars or individual tuition – is at the heart of our educational provision and will continue in person as much as possible. Given the likely need for continued social distancing, we have decided to suspend mass lectures in person for the next academic year. Lectures will be available online; this system is already in place in some University Departments. Lectures are only one part of the rich education that Cambridge offers and freeing space in lecture halls will allow us to concentrate on delivering small group teaching, lab work and practicals. 

Colleges are planning to offer a wide range of activities, and will work hard to build up community life, even in the midst of social distancing.

There remains a great deal of uncertainty about the likely course of the pandemic and its impact on universities. I regret that partial reporting of only one aspect of our plans may have compounded this uncertainty. We will keep our plans under regular review. Our objective is to restore the full teaching programme as soon as possible. If we are able to do this sooner than currently anticipated, we will.

Professor Graham Virgo

Senior Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Education)