Oxford is one of the oldest and most prestigious institutions of higher learning in the world. With its origins in the twelfth century, Oxford has been home to successive generations of prominent students and scholars. University College, in which students on the University of Virginia program will live and study, is among the oldest of the forty independent and self-governing colleges and halls that make up the University, having celebrated its 750th anniversary in 1999. In this setting, ideally suited to the life of the mind, students get first hand exposure to life in a British University and the surrounding community. While the University of Virginia summer program provides first and foremost an academic experience, students will benefit from a variety of social and cultural opportunities offered by the College, the University, and the City. These range from dining at High Table in University College, lunching in the College Beer Cellar and visiting the pubs in the neighborhood to attending concerts and theatrical performances.
1. This program will not run in Summer 2021; information for future years will be published when available.
All students who complete an application for the UVA in Oxford program will be considered for a scholarship based on need, as determined by Student Financial Services. There is no additional application required to be considered for this scholarship.
Oxford's location offers program participants the opportunity to travel widely in Britain during the weekends. London is an hour away by bus, train or car, and such sites and cities as the Cotswolds, Bath, Canterbury, the Lake District, Stratford-on-Avon, and Edinburgh are within easy traveling distance from Oxford. Students also may take advantage of the Eurostar for a weekend trip to the Continent; low cost airfares are available to other European destinations. Members of the program staff will assist students in making travel arrangements.
The summer program focuses on comparative culture and society in Britain, Europe and America with courses in literature, economics and commerce, history, politics, law and health care. Each class will accommodate between five and 12 students, with emphasis on group discussion and writing. An essay of at least 3000 words in length is due at the end of each course. All courses are taught by faculty members from the colleges of Oxford University or from other British universities.
Students may enroll in either session or both sessions, taking one three-credit course per session. Thus students who complete both sessions may earn a total of six credits. The curriculum is organized to enable students who enroll in both sessions to take two courses in a given discipline, e.g., 19th Century British and American Literary Encounters and 20th Century British and American Literary Encounters, or to mix disciplines, e.g., Crime and Punishment and Politics in Britain and America.
Classes will meet 15 hours per week, Monday through Thursday mornings during the first two weeks of each session, and Monday through Friday mornings during the third week. Participants in the program are required to attend class daily. Afternoons will be free for private study and recreation. Evenings will be free, with optional lectures, concerts, theatrical performances and the historic pubs of Oxford available to interested students. During leisure hours, students are encouraged to participate in such activities as cycling, punting, cricket, soccer and tennis. Organized extra-curricular activities are held to a minimum to enable students to pursue their own interests and inclinations while in Oxford.
Program participants have access to a variety of libraries in Oxford. They may purchase books in the many superb book shops in the vicinity of University College.
Oxford Course Information
IMPORTANT INFORMATION – SUMMER 2020
Some of the classes are now direct credit classes and some remain transfer credit. Please read the Course Descriptions linked above for more information.
Read the profile of the Oxford Program from President Sullivan's January 2014 Annual Report
Read what students had to say about the program:
Oxford Student Evaluations
Mark Thomas | firstname.lastname@example.org
Mark Thomas, Professor in the History Department at the University of Virginia, was an undergraduate at Oxford and also completed his D.Phil. there. Professor Thomas will be on-site throughout the program. He will be assisted by a senior student from Oxford, who will serve as social co-ordinator of the program.
Accommodation and Meals
Students at University College will stay in regular undergraduate rooms. These are single occupancy rooms, with bed, desk and lounge chair. Bathroom facilities are shared.
Meals will be taken in the University College dining hall. All meals will be family style with the exception of High Table, a semi-formal, multi-course dinner marking the opening and the completion of each session. The program fee covers the cost of daily breakfast and dinners on Monday-Thursday. On the assumption that most students will be traveling, the program does not include dinner on Friday-Sunday. However, for those students who do not leave Oxford on weekends, breakfast is available each day. Meals not covered by the program fee and not available in the dining hall are available in shops and pubs throughout Oxford.
The University of Virginia believes in providing reasonable accommodations for students with documented disabilities on an individual and flexible basis. If you believe that you would require adjustments in order to fully participate in this program, please contact the Student Disability Access Center at 434-243-5180 as early as possible in order to begin this dialogue.
Passport and Visa
All participants will need a valid passport in order to participate in the program. Students must ensure that their passport is valid at least six months past the program return date. All students must consult gov.uk for information about visa and other entry requirements. International students should meet with their International Student Advisor in the International Studies Office as part of the application process.
Health and Safety Information
All students considering Education Abroad should consult the Students Abroad section of the U.S. Department of State’s web-based travel resources and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Traveler’s Health web resources to research health, safety, and security conditions; visa requirements; immunization requirements; and recommendations on staying healthy and safe in their target destination(s). Students should also carefully review the UVA Education Abroad Health & Safety Abroad web page. Parents and guardians are strongly advised to review all of these resources, as well. UVA students and visiting students enrolled in UVA Education Abroad programs are subject to the University of Virginia’s Policy on Student International Travel.