Through Arcadia University you will be able to study in the Sciences, Social Sciences or Arts at one of six colleges: Hertford College, Lady Margaret Hall, Mansfield College, St Anne’s College, St Catherine's College, or St Edmund Hall. Find out more about each College on the Course page. Follow the navigation links on the side of the page.
At the core of an Oxford education is the tutorial system, where students meet one-on-one or in small groups with a subject tutor who will provide constructive guidance and feedback on your intellectual journey. In most cases, Oxford students focus on one particular subject (like biochemistry or modern history) without general or elective study in subjects outside their specialty. Students meet with tutors and attend lectures for eight weeks a term during three, ten-week terms a year. During the long breaks between teaching terms, students consolidate and extend their reading and work in a subject.
You and your principal tutor will decide on your major and minor tutorial concentrations for that term. For instance, a student in English may be directed to focus on Shakespeare's tragedies or 19th-century women's writing. Additionally, your principal tutor will appoint some of his or her colleagues to supervise your tutorials in each area. Generally, you will meet these tutors on a weekly or bi-weekly basis over the term but this may vary depending on the availability of your tutor and yourself.. You can expect your principal tutor to assign readings, lectures, practical laboratory work, and a topic for you to prepare and present, often in the form of a tutorial essay. These essays, based on extensive independent reading, are concentrated expressions of your analysis of each weekly topic. You can expect to prepare one or two essays per week, which your tutor will critique and help you develop.
Find out more about the tutorial system here.
In addition to your application, you must submit two letters of recommendation from instructors in your subject area and marked copies of two assessed pieces of written work. The marked copies of your two pieces of written work should include your professor's comments and grade. Depending on what is most appropriate, these may be essays, problem sets, or examinations. Your two required writing samples must be well presented and at an advanced level. The tutor who reviews these samples is looking to see if you have the intellectual depth needed for study at Oxford. Your writing samples must demonstrate that you've comprehensively researched your topic, yet can successfully present a succinct point of view and/or work through complex problems. If you're applying to study a combination of subjects, your writing samples should contain material that relates to both areas. Plus, you should ask the faculty members who recommend you to comment on the specific work you have submitted, as well as your ability for advanced work in the field.
We strongly urge you to consider full-year study at Oxford. Working with a tutor through a program of readings and research is an evolutionary process that takes time to master. If a year is not possible, Colleges may consider strong applicants for a fall term or two terms in the spring. However, more often than not, such places are limited. Additionally, the available tutorial topics and lecture series vary from term to term, so part-year applicants need to be flexible either about topic choice or which term they enter.
Early application is essential in order to discuss a specific program of tutorial topics and arrange for credit transfer with your home institution. It's important to keep in mind that not all Colleges offer places in every subject for visiting students. Your application will be directed to the College that best fits your academic interests and can make available the appropriate tutorials.
Colleges are small, close academic communities that admit 30-125 new undergraduates each year. Moreover, tutorial capacity in any one subject may only allow for 4-20 students. Because of these very limited openings, even exceptionally qualified candidates may not gain admission. Based on these limitations, we strongly encourage you to list a second choice university program other than Oxford on the general application.
To further enrich your academic experience, you'll become a member of the University of Oxford Student’s Union, which sponsors more than 300 clubs and societies including The Oxford Union, Rock Music Society and the Harry Potter Society, which have been popular with students in the past. In addition, you can contribute your talents to two student newspapers and/or a radio station. If you're athletically inclined, many of the Colleges at Oxford maintain sports grounds, squash courts, and boathouses. You are welcome to use the University's modern gym, all-weather track, and artificial hockey pitch.