I'm wanting to find out what's the difference between mentor, tutor and professor in a University context in the UK?

Also would mentor be a one-to-one ratio with a student, or could it be one-to-many? Tutor I suppose would be a one-to-many ratio.

  • 2
    I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because expertise in English is irrelevant to answering, what's needed is expertise in the UK's scholastic model.
    – Dan Bron
    Jun 1, 2017 at 19:25
  • I voted to leave this question open because it appears to be of significant interest to a fairly large site visitors (4,921 page views over the years), asks about the meaning of English words in a particular context, and has already been open for more than five years without seeming to have harmed the site in any way.
    – Sven Yargs
    Jun 3, 2017 at 17:57

1 Answer 1


At Oxford and Cambridge, tutors teach students in small groups, sometimes individually. The system isn't quite the same elsewhere. Professors are heads of academic departments. Mentors are not formally appointed in British universities, as far as I know, but in other organizations they are people who look after those who have newly joined an organization or who are having difficulties within it.

  • 1
    The first sentence is only half correct. At Oxford, tutors teach students in small groups. At Cambridge, supervisors teach students in small groups and tutors are pastoral / non-academic advisors and people to whom the students can turn for help. Oct 15, 2011 at 21:43
  • Forgive an Oxonian's ignorance of what goes on in the fens of East Anglia. Oct 16, 2011 at 6:06

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