Harvard College will not accept transfer students for the next two academic years because of a shortage of student housing, university officials said.
In a statement posted on its website, the college said that dean David Pilbeam based his decision on a recent study of the college's residential housing, adding that it was the most thorough examination of housing needs in the institution's history.
The statement pointed out that the college was beginning the process of planning for a massive renovation of its residential facilities.
The college has a long tradition of housing most of its undergraduate students on campus and does not admit transfer students to a nonresidential status.
"In important respects, undergraduate education at Harvard College is residential in character," the statement said.
"Students learn a great deal from the residential experience and contact with one another, complementing the experience of classrooms and laboratories."
The moratorium is for the 2008-2009 and 2009-2010 academic years.
Harvard spokesman Robert Mitchell said the school wanted to focus on new students, rather than transfer students, because of the limited housing.