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General information

Contact details

Any specific questions concerning the MPhil in African Studies should be addressed in the first instance to:

Centre of African Studies
Alison Richard Building
7 West Road
Cambridge CB3 9DT
Telephone: +44 1223 334396

Student Registry, Academic Division

4 Mill Lane, Cambridge CB2 1RZ
Telephone: +44 (0)1223 766 302

Graduate Admissions Office, Academic Division
PO Box 338, Cambridge, CB2 1YP
Telephone: +44 (0) 1223 760 606

Services for disabled students

Students with disabilities or impairments should contact the University in advance of their arrival, so that the staff can work together to develop appropriate support arrangements. Colleges can provide assessments of dyslexia, dysgraphia or dyspraxia. The University’s Disability Resource Centre provides vital information, advice, equipment and assistance to disabled students and their supervisors. It is located at Keynes House, Trumpington Street, Cambridge, CB2 1QA; Website:, Telephone: (01223) 332301; E-mail: .

Dignity and study at Cambridge

The University’s core values encompass freedom of thought and expression, and freedom from discrimination. As a place of learning, teaching and research, the University provides an environment in which to exchange ideas, opinions and views. We are committed to maintaining a learning and working environment in which the rights and dignity of all members of our community are respected. We recognise that to work and study effectively, students need a climate of equal opportunity in which they are respected and valued for their contribution, irrespective of their sex, gender identity (including reassignment), marital, parental or partnership status, race, ethnic or national origin, colour, disability, sexuality, religion or belief, or age. The Centre of African Studies will not tolerate the harassment or bullying of any member of its community by another. If you experience difficulties of this kind, please contact your College Tutor or the MPhil Course Director without delay. Guidance is also available on the Dignity@Study website or from the Student Advice Service.

The University Centre and Cambridge Sports Centre

The University Centre, located at Granta Place (by the river, off Mill Lane), offers dining and leisure facilities, including a gym and a reading room. The University Centre is an especially useful haven for those unable to return to College for lunch. Computing facilities are also available. For more details see The University of Cambridge Sports Centre is located in West Cambridge, off Madingley Road. To find out more, visit

ARB reception and CAS office hours

The ARB reception is manned from 8.30am to 5pm Monday to Friday, Telephone: (01223) 761 000. CAS and the CAS Library are open from 9.30am to 5pm Monday to Friday in term time. Out of term, these hours may vary.  The CAS/MPhil administrator is Ms Victoria Jones, E-mail: ; Telephone (01223) 334396.

Building access

You will be given 24-hour access to the Centre and Library with your University Card. Please do not allow unauthorised people to access the Alison Richard Building, the Centre of African Studies, or the African Studies Library by holding open locked doors for them. Please do not prop open doors that have been locked, as this will trigger a forced door alert to the University Security Office.  All entries with a card are logged in the building security system, and 24 hour access can be revoked if deemed necessary.

Pigeon holes

Every MPhil student has an allocated pigeon-hole in the CAS meeting room. You can use it for storing papers and other items, but CAS does not take any responsibility for lost property, as the room is never locked. Please check your pigeon-hole regularly as important MPhil information is occasionally delivered there.


There is a large kitchen on the third floor of the ARB (by the green sofas) that  African Studies students share with the Centre of South Asian Studies. The Centre keeps the cupboards allocated to CAS stocked with tea and coffee, and you should let the CAS/MPhil Administrator know if either of these run out. You can also store dry foods in the allocated cupboards, and there is a shared refrigerator for your use. Please show consideration to other kitchen users by keeping the kitchen tidy and hygienic at all times.  We would ask that you do your washing up and return any crockery and cutlery to the cupboard promptly. Cleaning staff will not do your washing up or tidy up after you. The dishwasher is not for general use, it is only used after functions, so please do not place any dirty crockery in it. Uncovered food should not be stored in the refrigerator or on the kitchen surfaces.


The female toilets in the ARB are located on the ground, first and third floors; male toilets are located on the ground and second floor. Accessible toilets are located on all floors. Showers and changing facilities are available in the toilets on the ground floor.

Booking rooms, IT and AV equipment

Although availability can be extremely limited during term time, you may be able to book the CAS meeting room or any of the seminar rooms in the ARB. Contact the CAS/MPhil Administor if you wish to do so. The Centre of Latin American Studies AV Suite (used for the African Studies Film Club) is also sometimes available, contact the CLAS administration office for booking details. The Centre has a number of items such as laptops, a digital camera, and camcorder etc, which can be loaned for short periods of time. Contact the CAS/MPhil Administrator for a full list of equipment and to borrow items.

University security

For Fire Service, Ambulance or Police call 999
In case you need to call Security, use the following numbers:
Routine Calls: (01223) 331 818
Internal Emergency Calls: 101
External Emergency Calls: (01223) 767 444


Fire safety procedures, health and safety and first aid

In the event of the fire alarm sounding, students should leave CAS via the fire stairs in the African Studies Library and go to the fire evacuation point at the back of the Alison Richard Building. If the alarm sounds, proceed quickly and quietly to that area. The main staircase in the Alison Richard Building is closed off in the event of a fire. Do not return to the building until the fire wardens advise that it is safe to do so. For advice on health and safety visit: for information, the ARB first aider is: Jamie Brittain 351 212 (custodian).

Back of the ARB

Back of ARB, photo©Alan Williams

Photo©Alan Williams

Foyer of the ARB

ARB Foyer, photo©Alan Williams

Photo©Alan Williams

Study area

Photo©Alan Williams