Courses

Students during their studio arts summer course with Oxbridge

Courses

Students at The Oxford Tradition can choose from 28 academic and creative courses that are designed to make use Oxford and its extraordinary resources. All the courses are experiential. They involve daily field-trips to museums, eminent guest speakers, project-work, and more. Our most popular courses include Medical Science, Business Management, Politics, and Law and Society. Descriptions for courses are below, and you can follow the link to read more about all our courses.

Law in Society

Through classes, discussions, and group activities, students are introduced to the principles of law and its institutions. They explore a wide range of interdisciplinary topics, includging human rights law, intellectual property law, regime-change, and nation-building. They conclude with a series of moot courts and mock trials, judged and adjudicated by professional lawyers.

Medical Science

This hands-on course introduces students to key aspects of studying medicine and modern medical practice. Combining specialist lectures with experiments, dissections, and class discussions, students learn the main principles of human anatomy and physiology, the pathology of diseases, the main challenges that medical scientists faces today, and the range and changing nature of careers in medicine.

International Relations

This course addresses International Relations by focusing on key issues of today. Subjects covered include globalization and its political, economic, and social effects; the climate change emergency and the best ways to combat it; and the changing nature of war, peace, and security around the world today. The course culminates with a model UN summit held in the Oxford Union.

Creative Writing

Students work with a published writer to compose fiction and poetry. They experiment with all forms and styles of writing, and they take inspiration from Oxford’s unique surroundings and its rich literary history. Successful authors lead workshops on writing creatively and the creative process. Students Oalso explore the publishing industry and journalism. Students develop a portfolio of their best writing and collaborate to design and publish a literary magazine.

Business Management

How do business organizations start, grow, and thrive? What analytical, interpersonal, and technical skills are required to make sense of and address the problems facing companies of all sizes? This course answers these questions and more through visits to Oxford's Said Business School. Courses cover a diverse range of topics including economics, finance management, information technology, marketing, law, and purchasing. The course culminates in the design and creation of a business model.

Politics and Economics

Oxford’s famous undergraduate degree, Politics, Philosophy, and Economics (PPE), is adapted for our students. They examine the institutions and policies of modern Britain and contrast the British, American, European, and East Asian approaches to global problems. Students engage in practical exercises, such as a fantasy stock portfolio competition, and complete the month by participating in a mock Parliament.

Banking and Markets

Taught by experts, students discover how the economy really works. They cover the evolution of commerce and banking from its ancient origins to the present, including the development of investment banking and venture capital, the financialization of the economy, and high speed and algorithmic trading. They learn how money itself is evolving with the emergence of non-fiat cryptographic currencies like Bitcoin. Through visits to financial institutions ranging from local bank branches to the Bank of England and the trading floors in London’s Square Mile, students investigate how money moves and markets operate, as well as what makes a career in finance possible.

Anticipated Full Course List

Taught by experts, students discover how the economy really works. They cover the evolution of commerce and banking from its ancient origins to the present, including the development of investment banking and venture capital, the financialization of the economy, high speed and algorithmic trading. They learn how money itself is evolving with the emergence of non-fiat cryptographic currencies like Bitcoin. Through visits to financial institutions ranging from local bank branches to the Bank of England and the trading floors in London’s Square Mile, they investigate how money moves and markets operate, as well as what makes a career in finance.

This course explores some of the key moments in British history from Roman times to Brexit. Alongside carefully planned visits, students use primary, literary, archeological, and artistic evidence to analyze the contexts of epoch-defining events in British history.

Students compose fiction and poetry under the guidance of a published writer, with Oxford’s rich literary history as their inspiration. They explore their own potential by experimenting with new forms and styles of writing. Successful authors give workshops in which students learn about the creative process and the practicalities of publication. Students develop a portfolio of their best writing and collaborate to design, edit, and publish a literary magazine.

To what extent do people unconsciously take on ideas from the society in which they were raised? Are we all unwitting products of forces we did not choose? This course combines philosophy with critical theory to examine why the world is the way it is. Students call on a range of thinkers to analyze the political and societal trends that define the 21st century. They learn to interrogate information, discuss controversial topics sensitively, and construct persuasive arguments.

Taught by classically-trained actors and directors, and addressing areas as diverse as theory, technique, improvisation, voice, mime, movement, and script analysis, students master the nuances of Shakespearean verse and interpretation as they prepare for a full performance at the end of the program. From auditions and casting to the final curtain call, Major class students participate in a full-scale Shakespeare production in the same way as a professional repertory company. Production fee of $175 US for the Major.

 

Students learn the principles of engineering science. Both world-renowned and local examples are examined, and the findings applied to a variety of case studies to solve mechanical, structural, and architectural problems. They complete the course by designing a model engineering project of their own.

This course examines some of the great works of English literature from Chaucerto Zadie Smith amidst the evocative surroundings of Oxford. Students engage with a wealth of writers in the literary pantheon to improve their skills in close reading, textual criticism and clear, informed writing. Each student engages in a close study of a chosen text in the final week.

Students discover what drives entrepreneurs, the rules they follow, and the ones they defy. They learn how to identify demand, determine fixed and marginal costs, generate a business plan, canvas for support, calculate overheads, estimate break-even and future value, and manage debts and depreciation. For their final project students launch their own mini-businesses.

With instruction from professional screenwriters and directors, students work in small groups to brainstorm, conceive, write, and produce short films (fiction, non-fiction, documentary, or experimental), which they shoot with digital video cameras and edit with professional software. Students screen their films at the end of the program. Lab fee of $300 US for the Major; $150 US for the Minor.

This course addresses International Relations by focusing on key issues of the day. Subjects covered include globalization and its political, economic, and social effects; environmental challenges; new forms of war and peace; the changing nature of security challenges; peacekeeping operations; the regional complexities of areas like the Middle East, Africa, and South-East Asia; and the relationships and rivalries that define global order today.

Students examine the British and American legal systems and how they reflect the values and institutions of their respective societies. Emphasis is placed on legal history and modes of thought, precedent-setting cases, current controversies, and the kind of first-hand courtroom observation that brings them to life. Each course includes visits to a court and sessions with lawyers. Major courses culminate in a formal moot court competition.

This course examines the masterpieces of four Oxford authors: J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings, C.S. Lewis’s The Chronicles of Narnia, Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland, and Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials. Students examine their worlds, symbolic systems, and mythologies, as well as their influence on Harry Potter, through workshops, field trips, debates, and group readings. Prior knowledge of the stories is encouraged.

This hands-on course introduces students to key aspects of medicine and modern medical practice. Combining specialist lectures with experiments and class discussions, students learn the main principles of human anatomy and physiology, the pathology and significance of certain diseases, the main challenges that medical science faces today, and the variety and changing nature of careers in medicine.

This course focuses on recent advances in molecular medicine and genetics. After reviewing the molecular structure and mechanisms of DNA, students analyze the genetic factors underlying diseases such as cancer and Alzheimer’s. They examine how information gained at the molecular level translates into treatments and address issues such as genetic engineering, cloning, and gene therapy. Prerequisites: One year each of Biology and Chemistry.

Using cognitive, experimental, and clinical approaches, students explore the structure and function of the brain as it relates to cognitive process and behavior. Students address the principles of neuroscience, neurology, and psychiatry, learn select diagnostic techniques, and study brain injuries and mental disorders. Classroom experiments are complemented by visits to laboratories.

Students explore a host of topics drawn from major philosophical, literary, and religious texts. They consider fundamental questions through ancients like Plato and Aristotle; Oxford philosophers like Hobbes and Locke; idealists like Kant; iconoclasts like Nietzsche; and contemporary philosophers.

Photographers of all levels of expertise spend much of their time in the field, pursuing assignments designed to improve their landscape, portraiture, art, and fashion photography skills. Students exhibit their best work at the end of the program. They require their own DSLR camera with USB cable, charger, manual, and at least one 8 GB memory card. Lab fee of $100.

Oxford’s famous undergraduate degree, Politics, Philosophy, and Economics (PPE), is adapted for our students. They examine the institutions and policies of modern Britain and contrast the British, American, European, and East Asian approaches to global problems. Students engage in practical exercises such as a fantasy stock portfolio competition and complete the month by participating in a mock Parliament.

This syllabus is built from the type of course typically taught on MBAs. Students learn to organize their lives, to create realistic schedules, to manage time-tables, and to define priorities. They learn how to collect and manage information, how to take notes, and how to condense and file them. They learn how to build their profiles, not least how to leverage their growing experience and expertise as they take their first steps into the job and university markets.

This course focuses on behavior and development in a social context. Students are introduced to major themes, including stereotyping and prejudice, cross-cultural differences, the dynamics of cooperation and conflict, conformity and persuasion, attraction, and the role of the individual in the crowd. Through case studies and interactive experiments, participants gain an introduction to psychology and learn to analyze their own peer-group dynamics.

Students explore major debating styles and strategies, engage in daily speaking exercises, orations, and dialogues, and prepare and present regular debates. The culmination of the course is a formal debate in the historic debating chamber of the Oxford Union Society, founded in 1823 and one of the oldest university debating societies in the world.

Beginners and more advanced students receive instruction in a variety of media. They spend much of their time outside, sketching medieval towers, capturing pastoral landscapes, practicing their portrait skills, or discovering masterpieces in locations such as the Christ Church Picture Gallery. Students exhibit their best pieces at the end of the program. Materials fee of $250 US for the Major; $150 US for the Minor. 

HIV, malaria, and tuberculosis alone are thought to result in ten percent of all deaths every year. The ongoing search for new pathogens is being conducted against the backdrop of outbreaks of diseases such as Ebola, SARS, and Zika. This interdisciplinary medical course investigates the biology of disease. Topics include animal models of human disease; cancer; conventional therapy treatment strategies; the genetics of complex and simple traits; the interaction between environment and genetics; Karyotypic analysis; the molecular and cellular basis of genetic diseases; and the role of oncogenes in tumor initiation and treatment.

War has been one of the greatest forces for change in human history and continues to shape the world. Violence in the Middle East and Africa, guerilla conflicts in South America and the Far East, and the global ‘War on Terror’ are the most recent examples of mankind’s long history of conflict and combat. While covering military history, this course also examines war from other aspects: the political, economic, social, ethical, and psychological. It examines how and why wars are fought, what has changed, and what has remained the same, from conflicts in Ancient Greece to the war in Syria.