University Challenge is synonymous with a few things: Jeremy Paxman’s sass, near impossible questions and the University of Oxford winning. A lot.

Since it began in 1962, the show has become a staple on British television screens in the evening.

People try – and (very) often fail – to answer the hideously difficult questions correctly. (I once got SIX questions right in an episode, thank you very much).

It goes without saying that the show has some consistent big names who often make it to the finals; most notably Oxford, Cambridge and other Russell Group universities.

How many have the University of Oxford actually won and who has won the most overall? 

Who have been the winners over the years?

You can search our handy table below by university name or year to see who has won and who has been the runner-up. 

In 1963, University Challenge’s first ever winning team was from the University of Leicester, who beat out Balliol College, Oxford.

Oxford did not take that loss lying down and two Oxford colleges won consecutively in 1965 and 1966. In 1965, Oxford actually beat itself when New College triumphed over Worcester College.

Balliol College are currently the most recent representatives from Oxford to take the title, when they won in 2017.

The most recent winners, the University of Warwick, saw off Magdalene College, Cambridge in 2021.

Overall, teams representing the University of Oxford have been featured in an outstanding 32 finals. 

How many times has Oxford won?

There are only 11 universities across University Challenge’s illustrious history that have won more than once.

Currently, Magdalen College, Oxford is tied for the top spot with the University of Manchester who have each won the quiz show four times.

Keble College, Oxford and University College, Oxford have also won more than once, with both College’s tallying up two wins each.

These wins for the individual College’s give the University of Oxford an overall winning number of 8, unmatched by any other institution.

Who will take the top spot in 2022?

Well, you know who our fingers are crossed for…