Madras Christian College (MCC) began its life as a School founded in 1837 by Rev. John Anderson, a missionary from Scotland. The School became a College in 1865 during Dr William Miller’s dynamic stewardship of the institution. In 1937, a hundred years after founding, the College gave up its growingly strident and congested city centre establishment in Georgetown for a sprawling 365 acres spread in suburban Tambaram. It was in this felicitous campus that Dr A.J. Boyd and his team of professors evolved a new pattern of learning and living, which made ‘Tambaram’ a byword for a unique brand of education.
The college was one among the first institutions in the country to be granted Autonomy in 1978. Autonomy has helped to bring academic pursuits closer to the life of the student, teacher and the neighbourhood. Introduction of new courses, curricular innovations and examination reforms have made education here more significant and contemporary. Inducement to sustained industry, emphasis on work with a practical orientation, and methods of learning through oral and written presentations have enhanced competence and committment resulting in a more exhilarating study ethos and atmosphere.
A significant milestone in the 26th year of autonomy (2003-2004) was the ushering in of the restructured curriculum at the Postgraduate level of the Aided Stream and the Undergraduate and Postgraduate levels of the Self-Financed Stream (SFS) under the Choice Based Credit System (CBCS). The CBCS was introduced at the Undergraduate level of Aided Stream from the academic year 2004-2005. This facility strengthens the academic potential of the students as it provides flexibility in the choice of courses within the framework of the disciplines of study offered by the Departments. The introduction of the CBCS ensures compatibility with the academic norms practiced in similar institutions of excellence in India and abroad.
In 2012, the College was reaccredited with a grade A by the National Assessment and Accreditation Council (NAAC). This has been made possible due to the College’s achievement in the area of academic research and consultancy offered by the faculty, International programmes, service-learning, student governance, sports, cultural activities and partnerships. Currently, College enrolment is a mix of over 3500 men and 2500 women students including nearly 150 research scholars from different parts of India and from 18 countries abroad. The College has a highly distinguished faculty. Innovative academic programmes are designed and offered by the Departments. Madras Christian College has consistently been ranked among the top Arts and Science Colleges in the country.
The University Grants Commission (UGC) has awarded the College with Potential for Excellence (CPE) status for the period 2014 – 2019.
The college has plethora of co-curricular activities, organized and run by students. It includes cultural festivals and competitions in public speaking and debating, quiz and creative writing, painting and sculpturing, dramatics and theatre and other games of mental and verbal skills which contribute to the wholesome development of the student. The College is endowed with fine play fields and sports facilities. In athletics and other sports activities the College continues to keep old traditions of winning and sportspersonship alive. The salubrious sylvan campus comprising scrub and open field is a bird watcher’s paradise and a delight to walk, jog or merely indulge in flights of fantasy..