Education and Learning

Senior Tutor's Office

Welcome to the Senior Tutor's Office. The Senior Tutor's Office has the overall responsibility for the academic arrangements and welfare of all our students as well as the Senior Tutor's Department. It is also responsible for the development of the College's strategies and policies for the teaching, learning, and support of our students. We are committed to offering our students an educational environment that allows every one of them to perform at their full potential. We are located in F7-F9 Chapel Court and you can reach us by e-mail on The Postgraduate Office, located in F6 Chapel Court, deals with day-to-day administration of postgraduate affairs:


Dr Mark Nicholls, Senior Tutor

The Senior Tutor has overall responsibility for students' educational needs, as well as providing advice on welfare issues. The Senior Tutor, Mark Nicholls, has been a Fellow of the College since 1999 and a Tutor for most of that time. He served as President of St John's from 2007 to 2011. Mark's responsibilities also involve looking after the College's Information Services and Systems. He has been the College Librarian for more than twenty years, and also has oversight of the IT Department and Communications Office.

Mark's teaching and research interests lie in Tudor and Stuart government and politics. His publications include a study of the Gunpowder Plot, a history of the British Isles in the sixteenth century and a biography of Sir Walter Raleigh, written with Penry Williams. He is currently working on a history of Treason in England. Mark has also published several analyses of conspiracies and state trials, as well as studies of 'succession politics' at the death of Queen Elizabeth I.

Dr Mark Nicholls

Jenni Prior, Senior Tutor's Executive Assistant

Jenni joined the Director of Education & Senior Tutor's Office in 2012 from her previous position as a PA in the Department of Public Health and Primary Care at Addenbrooke's Hospital. She studied English Literature at Durham University before moving into various administration roles within Cambridge. Jenni’s role as the head of the Director of Education & Senior Tutor’s Office is to fully support and maintain the work of the Director of Education and Senior Tutor. She has two team members working for her, Emma and Katerina.

Emma Clark, Senior Tutor's Administrator

Emma joined the Director of Education & Senior Tutor’s office in September 2014 having previously worked at the University of Manchester as a Programme Administrator. With over ten years’ experience of university administration, Emma has worked in various roles at two different universities and has, over a period of time, been involved in Admissions, Programme Support, Examinations and Assessments all the way through to Graduation. Emma has a BSc (Hons) Psychology and an MSc Management.

Katerina Marmara, Scholarship Administrator

Katerina joined St John’s College as the Scholarship Administrator in September 2015. She has studied Computer Science and has experience in both software engineering and administration roles. Her last position before moving to St John’s was in the Finance Division of the University of Cambridge. Katerina is responsible for managing, running and developing the Undergraduate Scholarships Programme.


Tutors and Tutorial Times

Every student has a Tutor, a College Fellow who looks after the general welfare of their students.

Tutors maintain a close interest in their students' academic progress and welfare, offering advice and encouragement. Students meet with their Tutor twice each term, and weekly clinics (known as Tutorial Times) allow students to drop in to discuss any issues – so they are there if you ever have a problem.

Tutors always work in a different academic field to their students, allowing them to provide confidential advice on any problems students may be having with their studies.

Students get to know their Tutors well, and Tutors get to know their students and understand them as valued individuals.

Tutors also ensure students' integration into the College Community, by creating opportunities for them to meet other undergraduates and graduate students in their subject.

Please click on the name of your Tutor on the left to find out information about Tutorial Times. If you are unsure who the Tutor or Academic Administrator is then please refer to the table below.

Teaching and Directors of Studies

Directors of Studies

Every undergraduate student has a Director of Studies (DoS) in their subject area. They advise students on which lectures, seminars and supervisions to attend, and they can be approached regarding reading lists, essays, supervisions or any other subject-related topic or concern.

Directors of Studies are the first port of call for any academic concerns or advice, and they will always ensure that you get the best out of your degree. You may not be taught by your DoS every year, but they will always stay in contact with you to ensure that you are making good progress.

You can find our present Directors of Studies by looking at the Subject pages here.


External Directors of Studies

Most Directors of Studies are Fellows of the College. However, we also have some External Directors of Studies who are often affiliated to another College or University department or bring specific expertise to the subject area at St John's. Directors of Studies arrange supervisions for students in their subjects. They advise students in the subject on which lectures and seminars to attend, and they can be approached regarding reading lists, essays, supervisions or any other subject-related topic or concern. They are the first port of call for any academic concerns or advice.

Undergraduate Supervisions

Whereas lectures and seminars are run by University departments, supervisions are run by the College and provide additional academic support to our students. Directors of Studies can set students up with supervisors from outside College if they require a specialist in a certain field not covered in College.

In the last academic year St John's provided over 12,000 supervision sessions, with each undergraduate receiving an average of approximately 50 hours of additional academic support.

College Teaching Associates

College Teaching Associates supplement the Fellowship, assisting in the additional teaching and academic support the College provides to its students.

Academic Administrators

The Academic Administrators provide a collaborative, comprehensive, and high level subject-specific service for Directors of Studies, Tutors, and the wider teaching community. They provide a tailored service to Directors of Studies and teaching staff to assist in their College responsibilities and liaise with Tutors to support student welfare.

Student Services

If you're a student at St John's then Student Services is your main port of call for information and advice on a wide range of general enquiries.

Enquiries can include:

  • Examinations 
  • Documents and confirmation letters
  • Transcripts & references   
  • College bill enquiries and payments
  • Accommodation
  • Tutorial enquiries  
  • University cards
  • Information on grants, awards and prizes 
  • Points-based immigration


Student Services Online

Students can access a new online portal where forms can be completed, grants applied for, and letter requests submitted.


Past students and employers

If you are a past student looking to make a request for a reference, or an employer looking for a reference for a former student then please contact us using the details below.

Degree Certificates and Transcripts

Original certificates for degrees are issued without charge to all those proceeding to degrees. You will receive this on the day of the congregation (unless you are being conferred in absentia, in which case the College will post this out to you approximately two weeks after the ceremony).

A fee of £15 is charged for each copy of a degree certificate. The University offers an alternative design certificate bearing the arms of the University printed in colour. This is available to order at a charge of £40. Order forms are issued at graduation along with original certificates. For further details, contact the University Student Registry office.

All graduands receive a formal University transcript free of charge after graduation. This will list the papers per Tripos that were sat, the class mark awarded for that Tripos exam, individual marks by paper, rank and subject content where available. They will be sent out via the College, so please ensure that your contact details are kept up-to-date.

Contact and opening times

Telephone: 01223 746959 or 01223 337716

The Student Services team are currently working from home during the pandemic. We can continue to be contacted during normal office hours 08:30-18:00 (contact details above).
Student Services Team - Updated 2

Left to right: Jenny Hopkins, Fay Page, Audrey Hewson, Stephanie Kingsnorth