We welcome you to the “city of dreaming spires” and a summer at Scholarship and Christianity in Oxford (SCIO). As a student in Oxford, you’ll discover what so many people across the world have found to be the most academically exhilarating experience of their life. Live in the heart of Oxford as an affiliate student of Wycliffe Hall and challenge your mind and heart.

Connect With SCIO

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Dear Prospective Scholars,

Thank you for looking at Scholarship and Christianity in Oxford’s (SCIO) offerings. Whether you are considering a summer, semester, or year-long programme, we have great opportunities awaiting you.

Oxford: the name that conjures up notions of a great medieval city full of dreaming spires and stunning architecture, idiosyncratic practices, renowned authors who have made their way into the canons and literary reading lists, great theological debates, and major politicians. The mythic abounds. But even more, the concrete reality of a world-class academic institution is omnipresent: world-class research; major scientific discoveries; scholars across the disciplines whose works inform most, if not all, academic libraries; students sitting in cafés debating perennial issues and newly breaking ideas alike; and a rich and vibrant student life including music, sport, drama, and the opportunity to participate in any one of more than 600 clubs and societies.

Come sit in a tutorial where you meet one-on-one with a tutor engaged in serious conversation, testing ideas and joining together as junior and senior scholar. This is a learning experience like no other: there is no hiding (for tutee or tutor!), and you probe and digest ideas, coming to your own conclusions with the requirement to demonstrate that your view is valid and solid, even where it diverges from the views of other scholars or your tutor. To accomplish that goal, you will have access to one of the world’s great library systems. The Bodleian library is the centerpiece of a group of more than 100 libraries with holdings in excess of 13 million items.

With a base in Wycliffe Hall, one of Oxford’s permanent private halls, join a rich community of scholars who share life together in a variety of forms: from the life of the mind; to cooking a meal together; to traveling on SCIO trips to interesting places like Bath and Hampton Court Palace; or making your own forays into London, up to Scotland, or over to the continent during the mid-term break. Join, too, a community of faith that is engaged in serious learning, affirming the ability to participate in scholarship as Christians dealing with difficult and profound issues.

SCIO offers you the way into Oxford to participate in a great academic experience, prepare for graduate studies (for those headed in that direction), and build your CV with a recognized educational experience that matters to academic institutions and employers alike. As you review the materials on the website, we hope you see the possibilities and consider joining us. With the CCCU GlobalEd staff, you will have a resource at hand to help you put your best foot forward as you apply.

Yours with every best wish,

Stan Rosenberg
Director

Stan Rosenberg, PhD

Stan Rosenberg, PhD

Executive Director
Elizabeth Baigent

Elizabeth Baigent, DPhil

Senior Tutor and Academic Director
Sarah Coogan, PhD

Sarah Coogan, PhD

Student Affairs and Programmes Coordinator
Simon Lancaster

Simon Lancaster, MSc

Associate Director
Jonathan Kirkpatrick, DPhil

Jonathan Kirkpatrick, DPhil

Lecturer and Director of Studies in Classics and the History of Art
Paulina King

Paulina King Bravo, MBA

Director of Finance & Operations
Kirsten Mackerras

Kirsten Mackerras, DPhil

Junior Dean, North Wing, Wycliffe Hall

Designed to uncover the relationship between Christianity and the British Isles in just one summer month, the Summer Programme at SCIO fuels intellectual minds at all levels of education: undergraduate, post-graduate, professorial, and beyond.

Required Courses Credits
3
3
Total Credits 6

Seminars & Tutorials

All students participate in two different seminars. Each seminar consists of three discussion classes, four gobbets classes, and two tutorials (gobbet is Oxford’s word for a small mouthful of text for close reading or translation and then discussion). Discussion classes (1 hour) and gobbets classes (45 minutes) are with the seminar leader and a small but varying number of participants. For each class, students read all or parts of assigned texts and then discuss them. Students are evaluated by seminar leaders on the basis of written work. Seminars can be taken for undergraduate or graduate credit. Student’s wishing to take seminars for graduate credit need contact the admissions team (admissions@cccu.org) prior to applying.

As part of their seminars students participate in individual tutorials during the second part of the programme. While meeting one-on-one with their seminar leader, students develop, discuss, and defend an essay related to the students’ seminar topic. Tutorials are individual meetings of one hour between the seminar leader and each of the seminar participants. In preparation for each tutorial, the student reads assigned texts and writes an essay of 2,000 words (3,000 words in the case of graduate students) in response to a question set by the seminar leader.

ALL OXFORD SUMMER PROGRAMME STUDENTS MUST COMPLETE their pre-programme reading before arriving at Oxford. Once your seminars have been confirmed, please ensure you make a prompt start with this reading or you will not be able to make the most of your discussion classes and tutorials.

Lecture Series

All students participate in the lecture series “The Christian tradition in the British Isles.” This course includes lectures and field trips to sites of major interest, providing the historical context for work undertaken in the seminars.

This course explores key moments in the development of Christianity in the British Isles, from the Celtic peoples of Britain to the Roman province of Britannia, to the Anglo-Saxons, the medieval Church, and the emergence of a variety of traditions in the Reformation and beyond. Through studying the Christian tradition, central to British culture until the last few decades, participants also get a glimpse into the development of British culture as a whole across time. The course includes field trips to sites of major interest.

The programme varies from year to year but past lecture topics have included:

  • Celtic Christianity
  • Anselm and his influence on medieval theology and literature
  • Field trip lecture: Stonehenge, Old Sarum, and Salisbury
  • Julian of Norwich and the late medieval English mystical tradition
  • Medieval drama
  • Reformation and Christianity
  • Field trip lecture: Bath and the development of consumer culture
  • Jane Austen and her literary antecedents
  • The theology of the metaphysical poets
  • The Oxford Movement
  • English social justice in the nineteenth century
  • Planet Narnia
  • The theological imagination of C.S. Lewis
  • Climate change, stewardship, and mission
  • Field trip lecture: Glastonbury and Wells
  • Field trip lecture: Coventry

Field trips are day-long excursions led by an expert guide to places such as Stonehenge, Salisbury, Glastonbury, Wells, Bath, and Coventry.

Your Oxford Summer Programme seminars give you the chance to explore your chosen subject in-depth with an expert member of faculty and a small group of committed students. On this page you will find detailed syllabuses and reading lists so that, once your seminar allocation has been confirmed, you will be able to start some preparatory reading.

All students participate in two different seminars. Each seminar consists of three discussion classes, four gobbets classes, and two tutorials (gobbet is Oxford’s word for a small mouthful of text for close reading or translation and then discussion). Discussion classes (1 hour) and gobbets classes (45 minutes) are with the seminar leader and a small but varying number of participants. For each class students read all or parts of assigned texts and then discuss them. Students are evaluated by seminar leaders on the basis of written work. Seminars can be taken for undergraduate or graduate credit.

All Oxford Summer Programme students must complete their pre-programme reading before arriving at Oxford. Once your seminars have been confirmed, please ensure you make a prompt start with this reading or you will not be able to make the most of your discussion classes and tutorials.

Study

Welcome to the home of some of history’s greatest thinkers. With discussion classes, lectures, one-on-one tutorials, and access to the world-renowned Bodleian Libraries, every student spends a lot of the time reading … and reading … and reading! If working at one of the best research establishments in the world excites you, then this is the programme for you! The only thing you will do as much as read, is write.

During each tutorial you answer a different question working with an extensive reading list. All students appreciate the chance to focus and specialize. It is exhilarating, head-spinning, and, sometimes, feels a little overwhelming, which is why the programme staff spend so much time making themselves available not only to support and encourage, but also to challenge you to push for new levels of academic achievement.

Housing

The Vines, a modest mansion on the crest of Headington Hill, is situated on 1.5 acres of garden with stunning views of Oxford’s spires. Running parallel to the path of C.S. Lewis’s former commute, The Vines is a 35-minute walk into Oxford city centre, a 10-minute cycle ride, or a 5-minute walk to the nearest bus stop (with buses passing by every 6–7 minutes). Equipped with a large kitchen, laundry facilities, and a well-appointed common room and bathrooms for every 2-3 rooms, The Vines will be your home away from home during the programme.

  • Laundry facilities
  • IT and study room with work stations and printing facilities
  • Large common room
  • Dining room
  • Large kitchen
  • Wheelchair access and disability accommodation
  • Prayer room
  • Wireless network 
SCIO Housing - The Vines

Libraries and Special Collections

Oxford Summer Programme students have access to one of the greatest libraries in the world. Make use of Bodleian libraries and its large and rapidly growing physical and digital resources.

Additionally, Oxford’s museums and collections are world renowned and provide an important resource for scholars around the world.

Museums and Special Collections

  • The Ashmolean Museum of Art and Archaeology houses the University’s extensive collections of art and antiquities. Established in 1683, it is the oldest museum in the U.K. and one of the oldest in the world. It also houses an exceptional collection of prints which can be viewed by any member of the public upon special arrangement.
  • The University Museum of Natural History houses the University’s scientific collections. With 4.5 million specimens it is the largest collection of its type outside the national collections.
  • The Pitt Rivers Museum holds one of the finest collections of anthropology and archaeology.
  • The Museum of the History of Science is housed in the world’s oldest surviving purpose-built museum building. It contains an excellent collection of historic scientific instruments from around the world.
  • The Bate Collection of Musical Instruments celebrates the development of musical instruments in the western classical tradition from the medieval period to the present. 
  • The University of Oxford Botanic Garden is the oldest botanic garden in Britain. It contains the most compact yet diverse collection of plants in the world.
  • The Harcourt Arboretum is an informal garden, where the public can enjoy walks and riding their bicycles. It is six miles south of Oxford and forms an integral part of the Botanic Garden’s plant collection.
  • The Christ Church Picture Gallery houses an important collection of Old Master paintings and almost 2,000 drawings in a gallery of considerable architectural interest.
  • Modern Art Oxford is the largest collection of modern and contemporary art in the Southeast region of Britain.

Spiritual Life

SCIO’s spiritual mission is first to demonstrate that personal faith in Christ can flourish within an academically rigorous environment; can operate in a public university; and interacts with scholarship but not necessarily in ways that are obvious and easily labelled. Second, to help students acquire the maturity, vision, confidence, and skills to study in a public research university and to encourage scholarly reflection in religious contexts and in a public, non-religious environment.

Learning to study alongside and under those of different religious beliefs (or, in many cases, none) is challenging. We encourage this by offering ourselves as mentors/examples, creating an atmosphere of independence in which students can develop such a vision and ability, and offering nurture by staff who are engaged and committed.

All students are encouraged to find a church home in Oxford. Apart from the spiritual nourishment that comes from remaining involved in regular worship, church is a great place to meet other students and residents of the town, and creates opportunities for you to get to know the people in your community. Many students on the programme make a point of attending a church whose style is markedly different from that which they usually attend at home, while other students find it a great comfort to attend a service whose style is more familiar, and all students should think about what might best suit them while they are here.

See, Experience, Explore

Alongside the field trips organized as part of the programme, a number of optional field trips are arranged by Oxford staff. These trips change from summer to summer. The costs associated with optional field trips are the responsibility of each student but every effort is made to ensure costs are minimal. In the past, these outings have proven to be a great break from studying, a chance to explore more of the British landscape, and an opportunity to share in the community life of SSO. You may also wish to follow an itinerary below on your own or with a friend!

Field Trips

Oxford

Oxford is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. With your University card you will have access to its 100+ libraries, and colleges that have been established for over 800 years, as well as its museums, bookshops, and ice cream parlours. Discover some of the amazing art available on view in Oxford with an art-walk: explore Christ Church Picture Gallery, see the Pre-Raphaelite murals in the Oxford Union, and visit the famous “Light of the World” by Edward Burne-Jones hidden away in the chapel at Keble College. Over your time at Oxford, various plays are put on in the evenings, which are fun to attend as a group.

Blenheim Palace

Spend the day wandering the grounds of Blenheim Palace: a world heritage site, home of the eleventh duke of Marlborough, and the birthplace of Sir Winston Churchill. The palace dates from 1705 and is set in a park designed by Capability Brown. Next to the grounds is the village of Bladon, where we visit Winston Churchill’s grave. Complete the afternoon with tea at the wonderful Bladon Tea Rooms in Woodstock.

Port Meadow

Enjoy a beautiful afternoon stroll (weather permitting) through Oxford’s Port Meadow—frequented by grazing horses—and end at the famous Trout Inn for a meal of fish and chips.

Bodleian Library Tour

As you start to get comfortable with the Bodleian library system, spend the afternoon on a behind-the-scenes tour learning about what really goes on when you “order up” a book from this world-famous collection.

Bath

Stroll through the Roman streets of Bath, taking in all of its architectural beauty. Visit the Roman Baths and the great Abbey, and follow in the footsteps of one of Bath’s most famous inhabitants, Jane Austen. End the day with tea at Sally Lunn’s tea-room in the oldest house in Bath.

C.S. Lewis’s Home

Enjoy an afternoon visit to The Kilns, C.S. Lewis’s home in Headington. After touring the house and grounds, visit his parish church, Holy Trinity, where he is buried and commemorated with beautifully etched Narnia windows.

Burford

Burford is a small historic village with one of the most prized parish churches the country, dating from the 1100s (although the site has been a place of Christian worship since the 600s). Walk through the countryside to visit the deserted medieval village of Widford, a once-thriving community that was wiped out by the plague during the 14th century and never recovered. The 12th-century church is all that remains, and is situated in the middle of a field without any access except by foot.

Dorchester

Once a major political and ecclesiastical centre, Dorchester is now a sleepy town with one of the most fascinating churches (once an abbey) in the country. Walk through the woods and up an Iron Age hill fort (dating from the 4th century BC) with some of the most spectacular views in Oxfordshire. Plus another f14th-century church to explore along the way! Cross the Little Wittenham Bridge, used for the official World Poohsticks Championships.

London

Over the semester many students find themselves drawn to sites and attractions in London, which is less than an hour by train, or 90 minutes by bus. In one day, students often manage to explore aristocratic London and the royal parks, and go past Buckingham Palace, Big Ben, Westminster, and Downing Street before stopping to spend some time in the National Gallery and the National Portrait Gallery at Trafalger Square. After lunch, you can walk around some of the older part of the City of London, including an optional climb up the Monument (a large Corinthian column with panoramic views over London from its top) and a walk past the Tower of London and Tower Bridge. Then go to St Paul’s Cathedral for evensong, where you can hear one of the finest all-boys choirs in the world. Don’t forget to have dinner before heading back home. Phew! And that is only a minute selection of the many opportunities there are to explore whatever might be your heart’s desire in this remarkable city. Some students have chosen to supplement their research by taking advantage of their free access to the holdings of the British Library in London and the National Archives at Kew, near London.

Weather

Summers in Oxford are typically cool and mild and compare to what you could experience in the Pacific Northwest of the U.S. You will enjoy plenty of moments full of sunshine, allowing you to read and study outside in the sleepy warm sun. You should also be prepared for some rain and misty days though, so be sure you have a rain jacket and trusty umbrella.

Tea (and Food)

Drinking tea is a vital element in the rhythm of the English person’s day, and all students are encouraged to discover this for themselves. Its popularity is perhaps explained in part by the cakes and biscuits that traditionally accompany this drink. Students will be invited to tea at regular times during the week, and it is an important time to relax, catch up with each other, and recharge for the rest of the day!

Apart from a few lunches and dinners organized as part of the programme, all students will need to prepare their own meals while in Oxford. This means shopping at one of the main supermarkets, going to the weekly fresh farmer’s market, or visiting the Covered Market, established in 1774. Many students form food groups that take turns to cook for each other and eat together at the end of each day. It is a great way to share with others what they have discovered that day, and also to hear what everyone else has been doing!

There are plenty of places to eat out in Oxford, ranging from the affordable to the expensive. The café in St Mary’s Church is a fun place to visit, as the café itself is in the Old Congregation House, and was the University’s first “official” building. It dates from the 14th century and was built a couple of hundred years after the colleges first started taking in students.

Alumni

When the semester is all said, done, debated, and graded, you’ll return home with a community of alumni that continually reconnect over the bond that Oxford so passionately unites. Learn more about what alumni are up to on the SCIO website.

The Oxford Summer Programme is an interdisciplinary programme that gives no preference to students in any particular field of study. However, a good academic record is necessary: generally a minimum GPA of 2.9 on a 4.0 scale is required, though in the case of non-traditional students this may be reviewed (note this GPA requirement differs from that of the Oxford Semester Programme), and OSP may accept any exceptional student it believes can meet the rigorous demands of the program.

Oxford Summer Programme is designed for rising college sophomores, juniors, and seniors; graduate and seminary students; non-traditional students; teachers; and those enrolled in continuing education programs.

How Do I Apply?

Simply complete an online application for the semester during which you plan to participate. Each campus makes its own policies regarding off-campus study, so you should consult your academic dean, off-campus study coordinator, and/or advising faculty member at your school to ensure completion of all campus requirements.

Before your application can be reviewed for admission, you must submit all of the following materials:

  • A completed online application form
  • $50 application fee (payable by check or credit card)
  • One faculty reference
  • One character reference
  • Official transcript(s) of all college course work
  • Certification Form

Summer 2022 Semester Dates:

Rolling Admissions

Application available until (or spots are filled) May 1
SCIO begins on arrival June 17
SCIO concludes July 18

AFTER ACCEPTANCE:

Once admitted into the programme, you will be required to confirm your intent to participate by submitting a non-refundable $500 confirmation fee, which will be applied toward your program tuition.

You will also be required to complete additional confirmation and pre-departure materials, including but not limited to: waiver and liability forms, a medical information form, a housing form, and proof of international medical insurance. But don’t worry! We will send you all the details and instructions on your acceptance.

HOW MUCH DO I PAY & WHAT’S INCLUDED?

Deposits:
Typically, the only expenses Oxford Summer Programme participants pay directly to the CCCU are the application fee ($50) and the non-refundable confirmation fee ($500, deducted from the total housing fee at invoicing).

Program Fees:
About six weeks before the term begins, the CCCU sends participation invoices to each home campus. For the 2020-21 school year, that bill will feature the below Oxford Summer Programme fees.

OXFORD SUMMER PROGRAMME FEES
Instructional Fees $4,960
Room $2,500
TOTAL SUMMER FEES $7,460
Confirmation Deposit ($500)
BALANCE OF SUMMER FEES $6,960

Keep in mind the total programme costs billed to you through your school may differ, depending on your campus’s policies.

Note: Schools or individuals who pay with a credit card will also be charged a credit card service fee.

Expenses Covered by Oxford Summer Programme Fees:

  • Tuition for recommended 6 hours of credit, including one-on-one tutorials, seminar classes, and a lecture series
  • Room and partial meals
  • All necessary expenses for official field trips
  • Use of programme computers, unlimited wireless internet access, and printing facilities
  • Free on-site laundry facilities (must provide own detergent, etc.)
  • Social events including afternoon teas with staff and other funded student events
  • Optional bike rental for Vines’ residents

Additional Anticipated Expenses*:

  • Travel between home and Oxford (estimated $800-1,200 from U.S.)
  • Books
  • International medical insurance (can be purchased through CCCU GlobalEd) valid in the U.K. for length of stay/programme dates. This is required for participation in CCCU GlobalEd’s international programs. Note: Some campuses will provide this for students studying abroad; check with your study abroad office to see if this is provided by your home campus.
  • Personal medical expenses, if incurred, including preparatory vaccinations
  • Local transportation, if not class-related
  • Personal discretionary expenditures
  • Partial meals
  • Cost of passport, if you don’t already have one

International Travel

Participants are responsible for arranging travel to and from Oxford. Student housing check-in time is between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. on arrival day; departure is before 11 a.m. on checkout day. Student accommodations are closed outside of official programme dates/times. Travel information from London’s major airports to Oxford Summer Programme housing is provided in a pre-departure packet.

HOW DOES BILLING WORK FOR OXFORD SUMMER PROGRAMME PARTICIPATION?

The Oxford Summer Programme is an extension campus of each member institution of the Council for Christian Colleges & Universities (CCCU); each school grants the academic credit for program participation.

The CCCU invoices campuses for the cost of participation in Oxford Summer Programme and in turn campuses bill their students following the campus’s established policies and procedures. (For example, some schools charge the exact fees of the off-campus program, other schools charge the campus tuition price, while others charge full on-campus fees plus an additional off-campus study fee. And there’s every variation in between!)

Since each school determines their own policies regarding off-campus study costs and the applicability of institutional scholarships and other aid, you should confirm your school’s policies with the Off-Campus Study Coordinator on your campus. As summer billing often differs from semester billing, it’s possible your home campus will require that CCCU GlobalEd bill you directly. In direct-bill situations, please refer to our General Policies for payment deadlines.

*Anticipated expenses are estimates, which will be updated should local costs shift significantly. You may spend more/less depending on your personal spending habits.

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For the latest updates on our response to the COVID-19 pandemic, please visit our COVID-19 Response page.

Health Services

Students have access to professional medical, surgical, and psychiatric services at their own cost. General pastoral care and support is provided by SCIO staff, who can also assist in helping students get connected to the specialized care they need.

You will be required to cover any medical expenses you incur while a student at SCIO. We will require you to show proof of international medical coverage before your arrival in Oxford. We partner with Cultural Insurance Service International (CISI) to provide discounted international medical coverage. You can view the current schedule of benefits for our customized coverage through CISI here.

Safety

Oxford is generally a safe place in which to study and explore; nevertheless, you should minimize any risks by remaining alert and taking precautions. Read more on the University of Oxford website: Personal Safety. You can also familiarize yourself with any current travel or health advisories for the United Kingdom by visiting the U.S. State Department and Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) websites.

Many of the faculty and staff have lived in Oxfordshire for years. During orientation, we will discuss basic guidelines to follow to help you feel confident and safe during your time here. If you have any questions prior to departure, please contact your admissions advisor.

Know Before You Go…

Studying off campus can be an exciting time filled with adventure and personal growth. Prepare yourself in advance for challenges you might face on the programme. Students at SCIO should anticipate: 

  • Walking in and around the city may include uneven terrain, such as cobblestone walkways, in unpredictable weather and frequent rain.  
  • Living in a residence of multiple occupancy with shared bathrooms, kitchens, and communal spaces. Living (and other) spaces are not air-conditioned, though this is very rarely problematic in the cool British summers. Living and other spaces are heated in winter. 
  • The Vines is located on a hill from which Oxford city centre is accessible via a 35-minute walk, a 15-minute cycle ride, or a 20-minute bus ride accessed via 5-minute walk to the nearest bus stop (with buses passing by every 6–7 minutes). The Vines has a bathroom for use by students in wheelchairs and generally with limited mobility and can offer ground floor accommodation. 
  • Students are responsible for purchase and preparation of their own food, transportation, and chapel/church requirements.  
  • Traffic drives on the left side of the road. 
  • Students may be unused to cycling or to cycling in traffic. Full cycle orientation is given. 
  • Historic buildings can present difficulties to students with mobility challenges but professional staff help with such challenges. 
  • Living away from family, friends, and other support networks. 
  • Managing and following a demanding study schedule with substantial independence, and attending lectures, one-on-one tutorials, and day-long field trips. 
  • Experiencing potentially challenging personal, religious, and cultural learning, lectures, field trips, and assignments. 

PROGRAMME LOCATION

You’ve probably heard a great deal about the U.K., but what makes Oxford stand out? Read the FAQ below to find out.

Where does the programme take place?

“Oxford still remains the most beautiful thing in England, and nowhere else are life and art so exquisitely blended, so perfectly made one.” —Oscar Wilde

The programme is in the heart of the academic community at Oxford, one of the oldest and most prestigious universities in the world. You will study at Wycliffe Hall and enjoy all the benefits of the great city of Oxford.

Oxford is located 60 to 90 minutes from the centre of London by train or bus.

What is the climate like?

Weather in Oxford is much like weather in the Pacific Northwest of the U.S. Mild, cool summers, with rain and misty days are not infrequent.

What is the geography like?

The area surrounding Oxford is rural with farmland, but Oxford itself is a city with a small-town feel. Bordering the academic castles are cobbled streets with small shops; bicyclists weave in and out of traffic. The libraries contain so many volumes that the stacks must be housed below ground—so as you walk, you walk over books. It is flat enough that you can bike everywhere and small enough that you can walk nearly anywhere in Oxford in around 30-45 minutes!

Will I get to travel throughout the summer?

Day trips to local historical sites are a part of your program. On staff-led field trips, you will explore the city of Oxford as well as places outside Oxford like Salisbury, Stonehenge, Glastonbury, Bath, or Coventry. You may also wish to travel in your free time to London, a short bus or train ride away, or any number of other local destinations.

ACADEMICS

The most eye-opening feature of the Oxford Summer Programme is often not the traveling, nor even the cultural immersion, but the intensive, world-renowned studies. Read this FAQ series to find out more about the programme’s academics.

How many credits will I receive?

You will receive six credits for your coursework in Oxford. During your five weeks you will attend two seminars, with associated tutorials, for three credits each.

Where will I be taking classes?

Your seminars will take place in Wycliffe Hall, and your tutorials may take place anywhere within Oxford. The specific location is dependent upon the office of your tutor and the Oxford school with which he or she is affiliated. Much of your free time will be spent in the Bodleian Library, one of the oldest, most extensive, and most prized library collections in the world. Very few people ever gain access to the exclusive volumes within this library system; but as affiliate students of Wycliffe Hall during your time at Oxford Summer Programme, you will find these doors open. Prepare yourself to see, smell, touch, and learn from books whose wisdom has withstood the test of time.

What will I be studying?

A complete list of Oxford Summer Programme seminar topics can be found in the Seminars section. Topics range from “Faith and Reason in the British Enlightenment” to “Creative Writing” to “C.S. Lewis” and his classic literature.

You will participate in seminar discussions during the first three weeks of your time in Oxford. Following your seminar sessions, you will meet with your seminar tutor for two one-on-one sessions to develop, defend, and discuss an essay on a topic of your choosing related to your seminar. The tutorial system at Oxford is the most distinct element of Oxford’s teaching. As an Oxford Summer Programme student, you will have unparalleled access to the mind and mentorship of an Oxford faculty member who will help you hone your writing and critical thinking skills, preparing your for graduate studies or professional work.

The lecture series, The Christian Tradition in the British Isles, explores the development of Christianity across the nation’s landscape, covering the Celtic people of Britain to the Roman province of Britannia. These lectures, along with three field trips to historic places throughout England, provide the historical context of your academic work and experience in Oxford.

Who will be teaching my classes?

You will be taught by University faculty, including staff of Scholarship and Christianity in Oxford.” These are scholars of the highest order: well-regarded and well-published. Your tutorials will be taught by tutors from Wycliffe Hall and other colleges in the University.

Who will be in my classes: local or CCCU GlobalEd students?

Your seminar groups will be comprised of students of the Oxford Summer Programme, who will be from a variety of institutions, primarily North American and Australian universities. Your tutorials will be one-on-one discussions with your tutor.

TRAVEL

What do you need to know before you step on that plane? Read the FAQ below to find out!

How will I get to and from the program?

If you are accepted, we’ll send you more details on how to find your way to your new home. You are responsible for booking your own travel to Oxford. If you fly from the East Coast of the U.S. to London, it’s about a seven-hour flight, and from London’s Heathrow airport to Oxford city centre, it’s a 90-minute bus ride.

Will I need a passport?

Yes! Make sure to check the expiration date. You will need a passport that does not expire within six months of your return from the programme. Start your immigration stamp collection now!

Will I need a visa?

Well, that depends on your nationality and how long you will be studying in the U.K. Usually, U.S. and Canadian citizens coming to study in the U.K. for less than six months do not need to apply in advance for a visa. There is a helpful checklist on the U.K. government website. Staff at the CCCU and in Oxford will be able to help you through the process and guide you to further information if required. 

DAILY LIFE

Your day-to-day to life in Oxford will look quite different than your current one—but how so? In this FAQ series, we will answer some common questions about daily life at the Oxford Summer Programme.

Where will I live?

You will live in The Vines, a modest mansion on the crest of Headington Hill, situated on 1.5 acres of garden with stunning views of Oxford’s spires. Running parallel to the path of C.S. Lewis’s former commute, The Vines is a 35-minute walk into Oxford city centre, a 10-minute cycle ride, or a 5-minute walk to the nearest bus stop (with buses passing by every 6–7 minutes). It has a large kitchen, laundry facilities, a well-appointed common room, and bathrooms for every 2-3 rooms.

What will I eat?

The Oxford Summer Programme provides eight lunches over the course of the term; all other meals will need to be provided by the students.

You are free to prepare your meals in the kitchens of the Vines, and, of course, there are myriad cafés and pubs in Oxford—including the famous Queen’s Lane Coffee House (reputedly the oldest café in Europe) and The Eagle and Child, where Tolkien and Lewis met with other Inklings.

And then, of course, there is tea. In Oxford you will become accustomed to (if not dependent upon) the tea culture. Be prepared to sit, sip, and share with your friends and Oxford Summer Programme staff several times a day. Many students acquire such a taste for tea, and for the social rejuvenation of these respites, that they bring the custom home with them at the programme’s end.

How will I get around?

Bikes and your own feet. Start breaking in your shoes now! Oxford is city of bicyclists and pedestrians. Buses are also easily accessible, but many students prefer the freedom and pace of foot travel. If you live in The Vines, you’ll have the option to use a bike (without cost) for the semester for easy access to Wycliffe Hall and Oxford city centre. For students in the North Wing, you’ll have the option to rent a bike to access city centre even more quickly.

Can I attend church?

Absolutely. We encourage you to find a church home in one of the many local cathedrals, house churches, or other diverse places of worship. Not only will these communities support you spiritually, but they will connect you to other students, faculty, and families from colleges throughout the University.

What is the program community like?

Your new community will be made up of 30 to 40 other students from various schools throughout the world. As expats, you’ll form quick bonds within a British culture that seems familiar upon first glance but soon reveals fascinating differences in custom, humor, faith, and more.

Will I be interacting with local people?

On a daily basis! While your lectures will be with other North American or Australian college students, you’ll be studying in the library with, purchasing coffee from, walking/biking alongside, and attending church among local people.

Communication

How can you get in touch with new classmates and local friends, and how can you keep in touch with your old ones? In the FAQ below we discuss common questions related to communication and technology.

Will my family and friends be able to visit me during the semester?

Because your time at Oxford is relatively short, we do not recommend that you invite friends or family to visit you. However, as Oxford and the British Isles in general are a wonderful destination for short visits from North America, we do encourage you to share Oxford with friends and family before or after your term at Oxford Summer Programme!

Will my cell phone work in England?

Many students find it refreshing to be without a cell phone for a semester. However, if you would like to bring your own, make sure to talk to your service provider about your options. If your phone is unlocked and compatible with overseas SIM cards, you can purchase this card upon arrival. More information on this is given during orientation.

Contact Us

Have questions or want more information about Scholarship and Christianity in Oxford?
Please call us at 202-548-5201 or fill out the form below, and one of our team members will contact you soon!

Stan Rosenberg

BA (Colorado State University), MA, PhD (Catholic University of America), FISSR

Stan Rosenberg is the founding director of Scholarship and Christianity in Oxford (SCIO), the U.K. subsidiary of the CCCU. He is also an academic member of Wycliffe Hall, on the faculty of theology and religion at the University of Oxford, and a fellow of the International Society of Science & Religion. He has published on Augustine’s thought, early Christianity and Greco-Roman science, and ancient preaching and popular religion. Rosenberg is on the editorial board of the journal Religions, and on advisory councils for BioLogos and the Museum of the Bible. He has overseen numerous science and religion projects for faculty, funded by major granting bodies, and directs the Logos program on biblical manuscripts, texts, and reception. Recently, he co-organized a funded project that led to his edited book, Finding Ourselves after Darwin: Conversations on the Image of God, Original Sin, and the Problem of Evil

Elizabeth Baigent

MA (Oxon), DPhil (Oxon), PGDipLATHE (Oxon), FSA, FRHistS, FRGS, FHEA

Dr Baigent is the university reader in the history of geography.  She was educated at the universities of Oxford and Münster.  She has held research fellowships at the universities of Oxford and Stockholm and a visiting professorship at Johns Hopkins University, with funding from bodies such as the British Academy and the Fulbright Commission.  From 1993 to 2003 she was research director of the Oxford dictionary of national biography, and research lecturer in the history faculty.  She has 550 scholarly publications, including a (co-authored) book which won an international prize.  She is fellow of the Society of Antiquaries, the Royal Historical Society, the Royal Geographical Society, and the Higher Education Academy. 

Sarah Coogan

BA (Wheaton), MA (Wheaton, IL), PhD (Notre Dame)

Dr Coogan graduated BA in English and philosophy from Wheaton, IL and MA and PhD in English from the University of Notre Dame. Her research explores global Modernist poetry, focusing on twentieth-century responses to the cultural past. She has published in Religion and Literature (2017), New Hibernia Review (2017), and in David Jones: A Christian Modernist? ed. Erik Tonning et al. (2017). She is Advising Editor of Religion and Literature.

Simon Lancaster

BMus (Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts) GradDipMus. (ANU Canberra), Cert Christian Counselling (CWR), MSc (Oxon)

Simon has worked as a historical researcher and contributor for some of the most prestigious presses in the world, and was an academic member of the modern history faculty at Oxford University, working as the chief bibliographic editor for the Oxford dictionary of national biography. He is one of the authors for the New Hart’s rules, Oxford University Press’s official style guide, and probably knows as much about style and bibliography as anyone in Oxford. His MSc dissertation in English Local History was awarded the Critchley prize by Kellogg College in Oxford, and he is now working towards his DPhil. He has been a member of the Christian Counselling Association and is trained as a professional Christian counsellor.

Jonathan Kirkpatrick

BA (Oxon), MSt (Oxon), DPhil (Oxon)

Dr Kirkpatrick graduated BA in classics, MSt in oriental studies, and DPhil in classics from Oxford, and his research interests currently centre on pagan religious cults in Roman Palestine. From 2004 to 2006 he was departmental lecturer in Jewish Studies at the University. He is writing a book on C.S. Lewis’s connection with the classics, and co-ordinates SCIO’s activities with the Green Scholars’ Initiative.

Paulina King

BA (Universidad San Francisco de Quito), MBA (INCAE), CGMA

Paulina studied business and administration at the Universidad San Francisco de Quito in Ecuador and completed her MBA in economics and sustainable development at INCAE in Costa Rica, in connection with which she was an exchange student in Leipzig, Germany. After having lived and worked in different countries in Latin America, she moved to England where she has been involved with sustainability projects, volunteering for MNDA, and teaching vocational qualifications at an independent college in Oxford. She is an Associate Member of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants and honorary treasurer of her son’s primary school.

Kirsten MacKerras

BTh (Brisbane School of Theology), MA (Macquarie University)

Following her undergraduate degree in biblical studies, Kirsten read for a master’s in ancient history, with a thesis on Irenaeus. Her studies have focused on the interaction between religion and politics in the ancient world, and the context and content of early Christianity. Kirsten is currently completing a DPhil in patristics in Oxford’s Faculty of Theology and Religion, where she is exploring how the church father Lactantius uses Roman ethical ideas to argue against the persecution of Christians.

Seminar & Tutorial A

Credits: 3

Each seminar consists of three discussion classes, four gobbets classes, and two tutorials (gobbet is Oxford’s word for a small mouthful of text for close reading or translation and then discussion). Tutorials are one-on-one meetings of one hour between the seminar leader and a student. Each student prepares one essay per tutorial. Learn more and find seminar descriptions on the Seminars page

Seminar & Tutorial B

Credits: 3

Each seminar consists of three discussion classes, four gobbets classes, and two tutorials (gobbet is Oxford’s word for a small mouthful of text for close reading or translation and then discussion). Tutorials are one-on-one meetings of one hour between the seminar leader and a student. Each student prepares one essay per tutorial. Learn more and find seminar descriptions on the Seminars page