There is little distinction between the University of Oxford and the town of Oxford. The academic buildings are strewn throughout the historic town that teems with 25,000 students, most of them on bikes, when university is in session. It is also a bustling tourist destination and an easy 1.5 hour drive from London.
Getting there is easy, but getting accepted to the University of Oxford is no small feat: many apply (17,000), few succeed (3,500). Oxford offers a unique and legendary opportunity to study at the highest level of academia in large part thanks to the tutorial system that has been in place for hundreds of years. Students work individually or in pairs with their tutor each week, delving into the course of study in great detail through papers, assignments, and discussion. To succeed at Oxford a student has to be, as one tutor told me, “intellectually sparky”: have flexibility and curiosity, demonstrate passion for the subject, and be able to integrate and retain information. Students are assessed continually but are given few “marks” until the final year of study when the final exams determine a student’s standing for the degree.
Having recently participated in a two-day counsellors tour of the University of Oxford, we are now armed with some new information about the process of applying to Oxford and the experience of studying there. Any one of the university counsellors would be more than happy to share that information with you if you come by and see us.
You should also plan to attend a special presentation by Oxford University’s Kate Burn on Thursday, April 14. Kate will be here to give an overview to students and their parents about admissions to the UK generally and Oxford specifically. Her presentation starts at 6:30 pm in the Copeland Lecture Theatre.