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Frequently Asked Questions

These FAQs are intended to answer the majority of common queries about our website and Development and Alumni Relations at Balliol. If you can't find the answer you're looking for here, please contact the Development Office.

My details

How do I update my contact details?

You can easily check and update your details online by filling in our secure update form. Your information will be updated in our alumni database. Please note you will need to have an account for Oxford Alumni Online to access the form. If you don't currently have an account, you can register for one here. Alternatively, please email your new contact details to the Development Office.

What is my alumni number?

This is your unique identification number in the format *-********

If you have registered for our website, you can find your alumni number on the 'your account' page. You can also find your alumni number on your University Alumni Card. If you are unable to find your number, please let us know by emailing the Development Office.

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Oxford Alumni Online

What is Oxford Alumni Online?

This website is part of Oxford Alumni Online, a community of websites for alumni and friends of the University of Oxford and its Colleges and Departments. You can see the full list of Oxford Alumni Online websites here.

How do I register for Oxford Alumni Online?

You can sign up for a free account by filling in the registration form.

Help! I can't log in

Have you registered for the site? This website requires a different login to the previous Balliol Alumni Network. For your security we do not automatically register our Old Members for this website, so even if you have previously used the Alumni Network and regularly receive communications from us, you'll need to register again.

If you are unsure about whether you have registered for the site, or have registered but are unable to log in, please email the Development Office with your name, matriculation year, alumni number and details of any error message you are receiving.

I've registered but my account hasn't been verified

We aim to process all registrations as quickly as possible, but sometimes we may need a bit of extra time to verify the details provided against our database. Because of this, please allow up to three days for registrations to be processed. Once your registration has been verified you'll receive a 'Welcome' email - you might want to check the junk folder of your email if it isn't in your inbox.

If we are unable to process a registration we will contact you, but if you have been waiting for more than five days please email the Development Office including your name, matriculation, alumni number and the user name you entered at the point of registration.

I requested a password reminder but my email address is not recognised

Check which email address you are using. You may have provided a different address when you registered for an account. Password reminders can only be sent to the address connected to the account.

Have you registered for the site? This website requires a different login to the previous Balliol Alumni Network. For your security we do not automatically register our Old Members for this website, so even if you have previously used the Alumni Network and regularly receive communications from us, you'll need to register again.

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Why hasn't my invitation arrived?

Invitations to events are usually sent our around 2 months before the event. Some events are restricted to certain Old Members, for example Gaudies are events for specific year groups, while the Greville Smith Society Lunch is only for those Old Members who are members of the Society. If you are expecting an invitation, it may be that we don't have the correct contact details for you. You can check and update your details online (login required) or alternatively please contact the Development Office.

How do I find out if somebody I know is attending an event?

For the majority of our events we publish an attendee list online, which can be accessed by viewing the events pages. Some Old Members have asked not to be on this list, and some events don’t publish attendee lists. You can get in touch with other Old Members by contacting the Development Office.

Can I park in College?

There is limited parking available on the main College site for Disabled Blue Badge holders only. You will need to contact us with your car registration to arrange parking in College.

Oxford's Park and Ride services are the best way to travel to Balliol. Alternatively, there are several pay and display car parks in Oxford.

Where can I stay in Oxford?

Download an information sheet about hotels in Oxford. You may also like to try

Some events will offer accommodation at Balliol. As an Old Member you can see if there are available rooms for use at Balliol at other times.

Can I bring a guest to the event?

Some events are only open to Old Members of Balliol. Please check the specific details for the event for more information.

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Degrees and graduation

How do I get a copy of my degree certificate?

Degrees must be conferred at a graduation ceremony before you can get a copy of your degree certificate. You can either attend a ceremony in person, or graduate in absentia. Certificates either be handed out at the ceremony or will be sent out shortly after. Find out how to book your place on a graduation ceremony.

All students will automatically receive a degree certificate once their degrees have been conferred at a degree ceremony. Students who have passed their examinations but have not yet had their degrees conferred at a degree ceremony can request a degree confirmation letter free of charge. The letter will confirm successful completion of the course at the University of Oxford, the dates of attendance and the classification. More information is available here.

If you commenced your studies at Balliol prior to Michaelmas Term 2007, and you require either a transcript letter or a degree confirmation letter, please complete this online form.

Lost and replacement certificates can be ordered through the University Shop.

I want to graduate. What do I need to do?

You will need to book a place on a graduation ceremony. These are held on a number of days throughout the year, the majority in July and August. The University aims to provide sufficient places for every student to graduate at the end of their course, or as soon after as is practical. Any remaining places are allocated on a first come first served waiting list to Old Members. If you would like to join a waiting list for an upcoming graduation ceremony, please email

What happens at graduation at Balliol?

Typically there will be tea and coffee available for graduands and their guests at registration. Gowns and ceremony tickets will be collected by the graduands, before a briefing on the ceremony by the Dean of Degrees. The ceremony is typically an hour and a half long and is a historic ceremony spoken partly in Latin. After the ceremony Graduands and guests return to Balliol for a drinks reception and photographs. A professional photographer will be available to take formal photographs of the graduand.

How many guests can I bring to graduation?

All graduands are allocated two guest tickets to the ceremony, which will be given out at registration on the day. There are no additional tickets. Unused tickets will be allocated to other graduands via ballot during registration. The ceremony will be shown online for those who cannot travel to Oxford.

It may be possible to bring additional guests to the drinks reception for an additional charge. More details will be sent to you closer to the time of the ceremony.

Is there anything that can prevent me from graduating?

The conferral of your degree is conditional on the passing of all required examinations. If you have any debts or dues outstanding to Balliol or the University you may not be permitted to graduate. If you are a research student, you must also submit a library and an electronic copy of your thesis at least five days before the degree ceremony.
You may be refused admission to the degree ceremony if you are not properly dressed in the correct academic dress.

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Enquiries about Balliol alumni

Can you give me contact details for my Balliol friends?

We can't give out people's contact details without specific permission, but we are always happy to pass on messages to other Old Members, provided of course we are currently in touch with them ourselves. Email the Development Office with details of the person you'd like to contact along with your message and the best way for them to get in touch.

How do I verify for a job reference whether someone attended Balliol?

Employers, prospective employers, other educational institutions, funding bodies or recognised voluntary organisations may request information on a student's current and completed educational attainments from the University. The University can answer these questions, with the student's permission, which should be acquired prior to making any verification request.

Please see the University's verification page for more details.

How do I trace an ancestor who went to Balliol?

The Development Office holds information on Old Members who attended Balliol from around 1930 onwards, but for enquiries about older, deceased members of Balliol, the best port of call is the Balliol Archives. Visit the Archives website for guides to tracing Balliol members and how to send enquires to the archivist.

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Giving to Balliol

How can I make a gift to Balliol?

You can make a gift to Balliol online by visiting our secure donation page. If you would prefer to make your gift over the phone, please call us on +44 1865 277636. Printable donation forms may be downloaded here.

What is Gift Aid?

Gift Aid is a government programme that allows charities to claim back tax on donations. With Gift Aid, Balliol receives an additional 25 pence from the HM Revenue & Customs for every pound received through a donation. For example, through Gift Aid, your donation of £10 automatically becomes £12.50. To have your donation go further, tick the checkbox on the form to use Gift Aid. To qualify for Gift Aid, what you pay in income tax or capital gains tax must at least equal the amount we, and any other charities or CASCs (Community Amateur Sports Club) you donate to, will claim in the tax year.

I live outside the UK. How can I give to Balliol tax-efficiently?

If you are a resident of the USA, you can give to Balliol via Americans for Oxford, Inc. This is the University's primary charitable organisation in North America, and has been determined by the United States Internal Revenue Service to be a tax-exempt public charity with 501(c)(3) status. Visit the University of Oxford North American Office website for more details and to make your gift today.

All donations to Balliol College are tax deductible. The University of Oxford represents an educational institution specifically designated for charitable status under the Income Tax Act (Canada) and Regulations [Section 3503] thereto. For all donations to the College, a receipt for income tax purposes will be issued.

If you are a European resident, you may be able to maximise your gift through Transnational Giving Europe (TGE). This is a collaborative giving scheme offered by a partnership of European foundations. It enables donors (both corporations and individuals) resident in one of the participating countries to offer financial support to non-profit organisations in other member countries. Beneficiaries benefit directly from the tax advantages provided for in the legislation of their country of residence. Country-specific contact details for the scheme are available on the TGE website.

Residents of Germany can also make tax-efficient donations via the German Friends of Oxford University without incurring any fees.The German Friends of Oxford University is a registered charity run by Dr Jan Willisch. It is authorised to issue donation receipts to German donors, entitling them to offset charitable gifts from their taxable income in Germany. Legacies are treated in the same way as lifetime donations for the purposes of inheritance and gift tax in Germany, so you can also talk to Dr Willisch about leaving a gift in your will.

Contact: Dr Jan Willisch, lindenpartners, Friedrichstrasse 95 10117 Berlin
Tel +49 (0)30 755 424 00

China and Hong Kong
The University of Oxford China Office Limited is a registered charity under Section 88 of the Inland Revenue Ordinance. Gifts of more than HK$100 may be claimed for tax-deduction purposes. When your donation arrives, you are sent a receipt for Hong Kong tax purposes. Find out more about tax-efficient giving for Hong Kong donors.

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William Westerman Pathfinders Programme

I'm interested in hosting Pathfinders. Where can I find more information?

Our William Westerman Pathfinders pages provide information about hosting Pathfinders, the host application form and a history of the programme. There is also a comprehensive list of Pathfinders FAQs.

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