Why Balliol?

Ten reasons to choose Balliol

Academic opportunity

Balliol’s top priority is the pursuit and sharing of knowledge through the highest standards of learning, scholarship and research. Our tutors are all leaders in their fields who are committed to helping you realise your full academic potential.

Read more academic reasons to choose Balliol here.

If you’re talented, you’ll fit in

We select students solely on their academic ability, as we have done since the 19th century, when Balliol led the way in turning Oxford into a place open to all on merit. If you’re hard working, passionate about your subject and ambitious to excel, you’ll find like-minded people here, whatever school or cultural background you come from.

Generous financial help

We are determined that no one should be prevented from studying here by financial worries and we help students as much we can with:

  • financial aid for any student in need: maintenance and hardship grants, bursaries, loans.
  • subsidies for food, support for societies, grants for academic projects and many other forms of support.

Guaranteed accommodation

Undergraduates are guaranteed accommodation in College for all three years of their course.

An illustrious history

Balliol is one of Oxford’s oldest colleges. If you come here, you will be part of a tradition that goes back more than 750 years and you will follow in the footsteps of many notable alumni

Right in the heart of Oxford

Centrally located on Broad Street, Balliol is close to laboratories, lecture theatres, libraries, and shops.

One of Oxford’s largest colleges

Balliol has 370 undergraduates and a nearly equal number of graduates. You’ll have the opportunity to meet people from many kinds of background, with all sorts of different interests.

A great community

Students and tutors here enjoy a stimulating intellectual life together, not just at tutorials but at academic events and in subject societies. Also on offer are a range of sports, the choir, concerts, an annual charity musical and many other ways in which students get to know each other and have fun. With a friendly atmosphere and people available to talk to if you need help, the community is close-knit and supportive too.

A unique JCR

The Balliol JCR has a reputation for being one of the liveliest and most active in Oxford, and it is unique in the level of input it makes to College life. The JCR Committee administers a substantial budget, liaises with the College about students’ needs and interests, and has a voice on key College committees. The JCR also runs its own Pantry and is responsible for the Lindsay Bar, largely run by students.

Our students love it here

There is no better testimony than the students’ own: read what some of our undergraduates say about being at Balliol.

Ethos is extremely healthy: aspiration is promoted, achievement is praised, and support is in place. It also happens to be filled with wonderfully interesting people, in my experience.’ Balliol undergraduate, BA Modern Languages, in the Student Barometer Survey 2016.

Undergraduate prospectus

For more information about the College, please explore this website. As well as the Undergraduate Admissions pages, you may be interested to read About Balliol and see the undergraduate courses we offer. For an overview of the College, see our undergraduate prospectus.

See a transcript of the video above.