A student in a lab coat squeezing liquid from a bottle into a test tube
A student in a lab coat squeezing liquid from a bottle into a test tube

HOME  >  STUDYING  >  Learning at Oxford                                                                                                                 Please fill in our feedback form about this prospectus to be entered in a prize draw. 

Learning at Oxford

Oxford is famous for offering one of the best educations in the world. One of the reasons for this is the distinct way subjects are taught. You’ll have individual access to world-class academic experts; this may be in tutorials, lectures, classes or laboratory work.

I think the teaching is outstanding. The quality of the lectures, tutorials, and practicals is incomparable to anywhere else. I have really benefited from the attention and challenges of small group tutorial learning which has driven me to work harder and learn more than I thought I could and still enjoy it.



Tutorials are central to teaching here. They are conversations, normally between two or three students and their tutor, and offer a rare level of personalised attention from academic experts. Tutorials are regular, rigorous academic discussions, and provide individual feedback on work.

Three students talking during a tutorial in a college office


As well as teaching in tutorials, many courses have seminars or practical sessions, such as fieldwork, each week. These might cover specific areas of your course, or concentrate on developing your language or other skills. These classes might also give you an opportunity to find out more about the current research being undertaken by academics in your subject department. You will also have some lectures to attend that will cover important topics relating to your course.

Two students wearing backpacks collecting quadrat data in a wooded area


Students at Oxford are expected to spend much of their time working independently. All our undergraduate courses are full-time, and on average students spend around 40 hours a week studying. Students are expected to do their own research and develop their own knowledge and understanding, usually by working through a reading list to complete a problem sheet or essay.

Many courses also involve give you the opportunity to follow your own in depth research for a dissertation or project. These pieces of independent research often take place towards the end of a degree, and allow you to focus on a subject that you've found particularly interesting and to develop excellent research skills. 

Three students writing while sat on the grass in Worcester College

Being able to have a chat with world-leading experts about the nuances of their studies was so much fun! I will really miss this, and would often leave tutorials still actively discussing the topic with other students.



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For further details on applying or on any aspect of student life at Oxford, please visit our undergraduate admissions website.

The best way to find out more is to visit our Open Days. Our Virtual Open Days will take place on 30 June, 1 July and 17 September.

A student setting up a practical experiment in a science lab
A student working in a lab.