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The Oxford Semester Programme

Designed primarily for those preparing for higher education or professional advancement in the UK, the Oxford Semester Programme supplements the benefits of the Octorial Programme with a comprehensive introduction to a variety of specialised discussion topics each week. For those choosing to study for 6 weeks or longer, we also recommend adding exam preparation such as for the IELTS or Cambridge exams.

The Oxford Semester Programme incorporates an ambitious weekly programme of subjects including literature, philosophy, artistic and economic theory (one topic per week). The programme cultivates an instinct for discussion and a strong intellectual curiosity – learners leave the course with not only the fundamental skills, but the knowledge of content essential for them to prosper in their chosen field.

Oxford Semester Programme students also benefit from a 15 minute coaching session each week, allowing them to practise interview techniques, writing personal statements and CVs – fundamental strategies to prepare for a career change or academic study.

The Oxford Semester Programme starts every Monday of the year.

Oxford Semester Programme outcomes

Here are some of the skills you will achieve through the Oxford Semester Programme:

  • Proficiency in skills essential to a professional or academic setting: note-taking, speed reading, report writing, text analysis
  • In-depth knowledge of advanced cultural, social and political subjects
  • Ability to construct and convincingly defend opinions on a range of issues
  • Skills for independent study or work: critical thinking, research, editing, project management

Course content

10 hours per week of language skills lessons
12.5 hours per week of communications skills workshops
5 hours per week of Oxford Semester Programme sessions on specialist subjects
Weekly 15 minute coaching session on strategies for higher education or career change

Students enrolled on this programme are welcome to attend the cultural activities which take place twice a week and start at 16.30.

Sample timetable

08.45–09.00 Morning Plenary

09.00–10.00 Spoken Performance Workshop

10.00–10.15 Break

10.15–11.15 Grammar, logic and rhetoric

11.15–11.30 Break

11.30–12.30 Oxford Semester Programme session

12.30–13.00 Team Project

13.00–14.00 Lunch

14.00–15.00 Composition and text analysis

15.00–15.15 Break

15.15–16.15 Mentored Dissertation

16.15–16.30 Plenary session: consolidation