Computer Science at Cambridge

The Cambridge Advantage

We are proud to be a world-class research facility, consistently receiving top ratings in research and teaching assessments. We offer a learning environment that is creative, stimulating, modern and entrepreneurial. As such we attract many of the brightest students from all sorts of backgrounds joining us from all corners of the globe.

The Computer Laboratory

Cambridge’s links to Computing stretch back to the first part of the Twentieth Century, when the famous logician Alan Turing developed the theoretical foundations for computation. In 1937, the University of Cambridge established The Mathematical Laboratory, as it was known then, to further research in this field. That makes the department the oldest in the world, having just celebrated it's 75th anniversary in 2012.

What we think of as computers appeared shortly after World War II and the laboratory was renamed The Computer Laboratory in 1970 to reflect its growing focus on automatic computation. We’re proud to say that the Computer Lab has been at the forefront of research in Computer Science ever since its inception.

As a Computer Science student at Cambridge, you are taught by the pioneers and leading researchers in the field. But that’s not all: in 2002 the Computer Laboratory moved to a new, purpose-built building on the West Cambridge site that offers a fantastic environment for both study and relaxation. The new building looks out on green fields and is kitted out with sofas, a pool table, table football, a large library stocked with the latest CS publications, big (comfortable!) lecture theatres and a great café.

Be in Demand

We fully understand the pressures on today’s students: there’s pressure to get a degree that guarantees a good job but also involves doing something that interests you. Thankfully, getting a well paid, interesting job is not a problem many of our graduates have. The skills we teach are so far-reaching and transferable that employers are falling over themselves to employ them. In our anual recruitment fairs, 50 + companies pay for the privilege of meeting our graduates—more companies always want to attend (we have plenty more industrial supporters) but we have only finite space to accommodate them. Our graduates are spoilt for choice in the job market.

What is Computer Science (CS) Anyway?

Ever wondered what the best way to solve a Rubik’s cube or a sudoku puzzle is? Computer Scientists love puzzles logical thinking tasks like these-after all, the ultimate embodiment of logical thinking is the computer. So whilst the subject is called ‘Computer Science’, it involves much more than just computers or ‘IT’. (It’s a bit like calling English ‘writing science’: there’s so much more to English than writing.)

These days we think of CS as the study of information, and it’s now at the heart of modern society. Computer Science is everywhere: it ensures that your Facebook page is accessible; that road traffic flows optimally; that we can predict tomorrow’s weather reasonably confidently; that there’s a dial tone when you want to use your phone. Computer Science has dramatically changed the world we live in, and the world needs Computer Scientists to create the future.

And don’t be fooled into thinking CS is meant for geeks who want to sit at a computer, programming in a darkened room for the rest of their lives. CS at Cambridge is for people who want to understand how the modern world works, and who want to influence it in the future. The skills we teach are in such demand that our graduates are spoilt for choice when it comes to job offers from local and global industry. Starting salaries are high, opportunities in a range of industries are plentiful, and we have more than our fair share of entrepreneurs in our midst!