Definition of bursar in English:



  • 1A person who manages the financial affairs of a college or university.

    • ‘In support of this contention, he quoted a memorandum dated 10 November, from the then bursar of the college which specified that a 50% council tax discount might be granted on houses owned elsewhere by members of the staff.’
    • ‘Traditionally, student loan checks are mailed to the university, and the student goes to the financial aid or bursar's office to endorse the check.’
    • ‘This coincided with the dismissal of the Vice-Chancellor, his deputy, and the bursar, who had misappropriated University funds.’
    • ‘The deputy bursar pointed out that the service was not just for women, as attacks on men were more frequent than most people thought, although attacks in general were not a regular occurrence.’
    • ‘Under such status, the school recruits its own staff, administers its own finances, employs its own bursar, and makes decisions through the governing body on many major matters.’
    • ‘Classroom assistants, bursars and caretakers are being joined by cover supervisors, to be followed soon by higher-level teaching assistants.’
    • ‘There will also be money for extra teaching assistants, administrative staff, bursars and training for teachers, heads and support staff.’
    • ‘The Government wants to train more bursars so that head teachers are free to concentrate on classroom matters.’
    • ‘The college bursar, Graham has a note on file on the day in question, based on information from Carol, gardener at the school.’
    • ‘Conspiracy theories have been fuelled by evidence that the committee of college bursars has commissioned a report into rent levels but has refused to make its findings public.’
    • ‘Oxford dons such as David Palfreyman, bursar of New College, see it as the best solution to the funding crisis afflicting Britain's universities.’
    • ‘He went to the school on a scholarship in 1902 and when he left in 1905 his first job was as an assistant to the bursar.’
    • ‘Soon she has landed a job as assistant bursar, displaying a winning way with investments, and manages to get Jake enrolled in the college by exaggerating his rowing prowess.’
    • ‘Earlier, colleagues at the university paid tribute to Mr Nicholson who worked as a bursar for three colleges over 24 years.’
    • ‘Most have their own board of governors and a bursar who is responsible for the school's finances.’
    • ‘Every person working in a school has their part to play in raising standards, whether they are a classroom assistant or a teacher, a bursar or a dinner lady.’
    • ‘Such a failure suggests that being divided individual JCRs are unable to conquer the ever more united efforts by college bursars to mount a uniform offensive on subsidisation.’
    • ‘Having determined future company labour needs, the bursars are selected to satisfy the predicted manpower requirements of the company.’
    • ‘Over the years he had held several appointments in the College, bursar since 1986, registrar since 1989 and vice president since.’
    • ‘Under this practice, the college bursar was compelled to hand out as much money as students might request at the beginning of the semester.’
    clerk, bank clerk, teller, bank teller, banker, treasurer, bursar, purser
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  • 2Scottish A student attending a college or university on a scholarship.

    • ‘The Bank awards £1,000 for each year of a bursar's degree programme.’
    • ‘All golf bursars are expected to represent the University in all appropriate University and national competitions.’
    • ‘The bursars will be chosen on the basis of the information provided to the University through those web pages, with financial need being the major determining factor.’
    • ‘That programme has supported 463 students over 5 years, with bursars achieving an 80 to 95 percent pass rate.’


Late Middle English: from French boursier or ( bursar) medieval Latin bursarius, from bursa bag, purse (see bursa).