The Oxford Tutorial

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Date of Publication: 01 February 2016

Oxford is world-famous for its distinctive style of teaching: the tutorial. Rather than teaching students in large groups, the tutorial system provides students with a closely tailored intimate discussion with a world-expert in their field. It’s a winning formula for intellectual discovery, and for perfectly pitched teaching. If you’re struggling on a particular area, then a tutor can provide focussed advice to help you understand the thorniest of problems – but if you’re leaping ahead of your peers, then a tutor can stretch you and challenge you like never before.

Although we aren’t part of the university, Oxford is at the core of everything we do. That’s why, each week at Oxford Summer Courses, alongside your group seminars, if you are aged 16 and over you’ll have a tutorial with a current University researcher or academic – someone who has bags of experience teaching undergraduates and who can offer you the authentic Oxford tutorial experience.

The tutorial system recognises and reinforces the value of independent study. Each week, you’ll have an essay or a set of problem questions to take away from seminars, and to research and write up on your own. In the tutorial, you’ll discuss what you’ve written, and our tutors will give you their undivided attention, one on one. They’ll closely attend to your thinking and arguments – and force you to articulate and justify your arguments and conclusions. The tutorial is an exchange of knowledge and enthusiasm: our tutors will share their own approaches, honed throughout many years of intense study and reflection. They’re at the cutting edge of their respective fields, and will be able to include you in their thinking and passion for their subject.

Each year, our students tell us they love our tutors – it’s because we use the tutorial system that students at Oxford Summer Courses are able to make the most of their time with us, learning new ways to work, marshal evidence and communicate ideas with flexibility and flair.

Your tutorials, quite simply, will shape your thinking forever.

Learn more about our teaching methods here: Our Teaching

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