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Postgraduate Admissions


Changing your start date

You may only change the start date of your course if there is another possible start date within the same academic year. Because the academic year starts with the Michaelmas (October) Term, this means it is not possible to defer entry to start in October, from a start date earlier in the calendar year. The majority of MPhil courses begin with taught elements, and only start in October, so in these cases, changing the start date is not possible. Possible start dates for research degrees are October, January and April. However, please note that not every department accepts applicants for January or April entry.

How to change your start date if you have received an offer

If you no longer wish to start your course in the term for which you have received an offer, you may be able to defer your offer to another start date within the same academic year. If deferral for your course is possible, it will appear as an option to choose on your Self-Service page.

How to change your start date if your admission has been confirmed

If your admission has already been confirmed but you wish to request a deferral to another start date within the same academic year, you will need to email the Postgraduate Admissions Office to make the request, as 'deferral' will not appear as an option in your Self-Service page.

How to change your start date if you have not yet received an offer

If you have not yet received an offer but you wish to change the course start date, you will need to contact the department or faculty to make the request, as the deferral option is only available for applicants who have received an offer.

Approval of your deferral request

Your deferral will only be approved after agreement from each of the following: the department/faculty, degree committee, College and the Postgraduate Admissions Office.

If your deferral is approved, you will not normally have to resubmit any academic documents which you have already sent. Any scholarships which you have already been awarded will usually remain valid for the later start date, as long as you start you course before the end of April. However, you will need to consult your sponsor if you wish to defer your offer. You will not automatically be considered for any further scholarships. If your request to defer your admission is agreed, you will be required to submit a new financial undertaking form to show your new start date.

If your deferral request is rejected by the department/faculty, or degree committee, your place to study will be withdrawn. If your deferral request is rejected by the College, your application will automatically be sent to another College for consideration.

Deferral request deadline

Please note that there are deadlines in place for each term. If you wish to be considered for a deferral, your request must be submitted before the following dates:

Deferring from Michaelmas 2021 to Lent 2022: 7 October 2021

Deferring from Lent 2022 to Easter 2022: 14 January 2022

Applications for deferrals past these dates cannot be considered.

How to re-submit your application in the following academic year

If you have an offer and you are unable to arrive in Cambridge to start your programme you can re-submit your original application materials for consideration in the following academic year. You will be asked to explain your reason for re-submitting. Guidance on the re-submission process is available, please read all sections of this carefully. Note that re-submission does not guarantee a new offer and it may also require the resubmission of documents to meet offer conditions.