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Department of Computer Science and Technology


Information for students 2020-21

Welcome to the Computer Science Tripos

Full information about your courses is available at where you can find the timetables, individual course details and tick and project deadlines.

It may be helpful to read the lecturing guidance for lecturers, for information about what to expect from your lectures this term.

In you need to enter the Lab for any reason, please make sure you follow the building guidance.

Returning to Cambridge in January 2021

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, all teaching for Lent term will now be online. There will be some live sessions but these will be recorded. We will do our best to accommodate those of you in different time zones but it will be impossible to avoid some unsocial hours for some people. Course notes and slides are available online. We will try and post hard copies to students with a particular need although this is quite difficult in the current circumstances. Paper copies will be available next term for revision.

The Department will run a live-streamed briefing lecture with a Q and A session (which will also be recorded) for each year on Wednesday 20th January.  The times will be 10.30am IAs, 11am IBs and 11.30am Part IIs. These will be added to your timetables.


Course dates

Lent term

IB Group project presentations Live streamed on Wednesday 17th March.  Further details to follow.
Outstanding Michaelmas term ticks There are catch-up sessions at the start of term. Lookout for Moodle announcements or ask Student Admin. 
Part IA and Part IB Lent term tick deadlines See course websites for interim deadlines and HoD notices
Part II projects Project progress reviews are due in on 5th February (12 noon)
Applications for Part III Applications must be sent to Student Admin by 13 February (Division of Term) Further details  


Easter term

Part II dissertation submission 12 noon Friday 14th May. A PDF by electronic submission on Moodle
All years - Tripos written exams  7th - 10th June 2021
Publication of IB and Part II classlists  24 June 2021
Publication of IA classlist  7th July 2021 (TBC)


Workload and expectations

Term time

Each of years 1 to 3 of the Computer Science Tripos is organised in four strands and the amount of work in each strand ranges from 8 to 12 hours per week, meaning that, in the most intense periods of study, you would be expected to be working 48 hours a week.Typically, per strand, this might be 3 hours of lectures, 2 hours private preparation for lectures, 1 supervision, 3 hours of private preparation for supervision, and 3 hours of practical work, including preparation for the practical.


2.5 hours per weekday


84 hours of exam revision, 4 hours of exam supervisions, 12 hours of examinations.

Practical work

Details of practical ticks can be found in Head of Department notices. Further information can be found on individual course websites. Some practicals are run as drop-in sessions whilst others require attendance. Do read the course guidance carefully.

Exams advice

The main exams take place in June. You can find exam timetables and other information here, including the structure of the exam papers and formal notices about deadlines for practical work. Here's some useful information and tips on how to be successful in your exams.

Due to coronavirus pandemic, there will be special arrangements for the 2020-21 exams.

Lecture attendance

Part IA and IB students are expected to follow all lectures on video. In Part II you specialise and select your courses (see guidance below). All lectures, including those Part II lectures given live, will be recorded.

Student reps

The Computer Lab Staff and Student Consultative Forum (SSCOF) meets twice termly. Do contact your rep with any suggestions or problems. The Lab is always ready to listen. Find your rep’s contact details. There are also student reps on the CL Faculty Board.