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Three students on Oxford's UNIQ summer school smile for the camera.

University-Wide

Programmes

University Wide

Support and Access

As well as our own access programme and outreach events, Trinity supports a range of outreach schemes run by Oxford University.

Regional Teacher Conferences

Because the University recognises the key role that teachers and careers advisers play in encouraging students to consider their options and make informed decisions, we run regional teacher conferences.

During conferences, we welcome the chance to talk with teachers and advisers about supporting your students through all aspects of considering, and applying to, Oxford. Sign up to attend the next conference in your region or view a sample programme here.

Teacher summer schools

Oxford’s CPD accredited Teacher Summer School is a FREE two-day residential conference for teachers from state-funded schools and colleges in the UK. During the summer school, teachers receive detailed support and guidance about the Oxford admissions process, experience taster sessions for different academic subjects, and learn from mock interviews. It aims to support teachers to stretch and challenge their most able students, and equip them with the best possible advice and guidance on selective university admissions. Details of the summer school can be found here.

Oxbridge Student Conferences

These conferences are designed as Open Days on the road, our conferences bring experienced admissions staff, subject specialists and current students from the universities of Oxford and Cambridge to you and your students at venues around the UK. The events are aimed at Year 12 students (or equivalent) who are studying for their A Levels/IB (or equivalent) and are beginning to consider their options for study beyond sixth form. These full day events provide up to date information about our courses, clearly outline the admissions process and provide students with the opportunity to hear first-hand how our current undergraduate students find life at Oxford and Cambridge.

Our aim is for students to leave having explored the breadth of subjects on offer to them, gained a deeper insight in to what our courses involve and an understanding of how both universities assess applications. Find out more about the conferences here.

Competitions for your pupils

Several colleges and departments of the University of Oxford run competitions which are open to students from schools and colleges. Preparing an entry for one of these competitions is a valuable experience for academically motivated students so please do encourage your students to enter. There are also some exciting prizes to be won.

Further details can be found on the university's academic competitions for schools and colleges pages.

Oxplore: The home of Big Questions

Oxplore is an innovative digital outreach portal from the University of Oxford. As the ‘Home of Big Questions’ it aims to engage those from 11 to 18 years with debates and ideas that go beyond what is covered in the classroom. The big questions aim to tackle complex ideas across a wide range of subjects and draw on the latest research undertaken at Oxford. Oxplore aims to support the realisation of aspiration, promote deeper thinking and stimulate intellectual curiosity. This could be an effective tool that teachers may use to aid thinking and discussion skill development during lessons or super curriculum activity for their pupils. Pupils are also encouraged to access the platform independently.

Find out more about Oxplore here and explore some of the Big Questions here.

Targeted programmes of support for your pupils

Aim for Oxford

This is a new two-year-long sustained contact outreach scheme, from St Anne’s and Christ Church College, Oxford for young people in the North East. This scheme is for able students from less advantaged backgrounds who are entering Year 12 and who may be interested in making an application to Oxford in the future.

The programme will be offered completely free of charge, initially to a cohort of up to forty Year 12 students attending state schools in the North East of England. The programme will allow students to explore different subjects with university researchers, experience academic and social life at the University of Oxford, receive expert advice on how to apply and be supported throughout the process. Participants will attend academic enrichment, information and guidance sessions in Newcastle City Centre across four dates between January and April each year, followed by a four-night summer school at Oxford University. Participants who then go on to make applications to Oxford will progress to the Year 13 programme (September onwards).

All travel and other costs will be covered for participants for both regional and Oxford-based parts of the programme. Selection for the forty places will be based on a combination of achievement (majority of GCSEs at grades 7/8/9) and factors indicating disadvantage or low progression to higher education.

Applications for the scheme open in September and close on in October. More details about the programme, the eligibility criteria and the application form can be found on the St Anne’s College website here.

UNIQ residential spring or summer

YR12 students come to Oxford for five days, stay in a college, attend an academic programme during the day and take part in social activities in the evenings. Students will get first-hand experience of life at university, meet like-minded people and gain deeper understanding of a subject that interests them.

Academic Programme

During UNIQ students will be taught by Oxford academics, attend lectures and labs, and use departmental facilities – just like a real undergraduate! In addition to lectures students might be asked to prepare some independent work for a tutorial at the end of the week where they will go through the topic in detail, either individually with a tutor or in a small group.

The UNIQ academic programmes are demanding, but they are also fun and students get to look at their favourite subject in new and engaging ways. The UNIQ courses give students an insight into what studying at degree level, and at Oxford, is really like.

We run courses on over 30 subjects, so there’s plenty to choose from and almost certainly something to suit a variety of interests. Have a look at the courses page for more information.

Admissions advice

We understand that aiming high and applying to top universities like Oxford can seem a little daunting. There will be a range of dedicated sessions throughout the week providing information on every aspect of the application process.

Social Programme

It’s not all hard work! Outside of the academic timetable there will be free time or opportunities to take part in a range of social activities. In the past there have been stand-up comedy evenings, sports and games in the park, college tours, city-wide scavenger hunts and epic parties.

For more information on the selection criteria for UNIQ and to make an application visit the UNIQ website.

Target Oxbridge

Target Oxbridge is a free programme that aims to help black African and Caribbean students and students of mixed race with black African and Caribbean heritage increase their chances of getting into the Universities of Oxford or Cambridge (known collectively as Oxbridge). Since launching in 2012, Target Oxbridge has helped 81 students to secure Oxbridge offers. The programme is open to UK-based students in Year 12 (as well as, in certain circumstances Year 13).

The students accepted onto the programme will be high attainers – they will ideally have achieved, 5 grades at A*, 9, 8 or 7 at GCSE. In the case of students hoping to study Medicine, they will ideally have achieved 8 grades at A*, 9 or 8 at GCSE.

The various strands of the programme focus on intellectual, cultural and social development irrespective of personal or economic barriers. These strands include:

  • Regular contact with a black or minority ethnic Oxbridge graduate to pinpoint your strengths, discuss your aspirations and identify areas for development.

  • A tailored series of critical theory discussions, seminars, Oxbridge-style tutorials, visits to both universities and guest speaker events.

  • Advice on making the right degree subject, university and college selection.

  • Personalised advice on your personal statement, UCAS form, SAQ statement and other submitted materials including essays, statements of purpose and portfolios.

  • Structured Oxbridge interview practice, test preparation sessions with trained markers/assessors and revision workshops.

  • One-on-one mentoring.

More information about how to apply can be found on the Target Oxbridge website.

Universify Education

The vision of Universify is for all students to reach their potential in education by helping more students from non-traditional backgrounds to feel empowered and excited about fulfilling their potential at top universities.

Through their year-long programme the aim is to improve educational aspirations, school attainment and application prospects to highly selective universities.

Universify is aimed at Year 10 students unsure about whether university is for them. By taking part in the programme they will become a university student for a week in the summer, and gain a true experience of what it is like to study at a top university and how they can make it to a highly selective university, with the help of a Universify coach.

If you would like to know more about the programme you can Register your school’s interest on the Universify website.

Opportunity Oxford for applicants 

The University's new access programme, Opportunity Oxford, will have up to 60 places available across a range of subjects for UK students who might not have expected or realised that they might qualify for a place to study here. This number of places on Opportunity Oxford will continue to rise over the next couple of years up to 200. To be eligible, applicants will be on track to meet the academic requirements of their chosen Oxford course but will not have received lots of support with their studies and will come from a less advantaged background.

Opportunity Oxford aims to prepare academically-talented students for university - so that they can make the most of their abilities and enjoy their studies. All students have to do is apply to Oxford through UCAS in the normal way. If they are eligible, they will automatically be considered for a place on Opportunity Oxford. They will know if they are successful in receiving an offer from Oxford and a place on Opportunity Oxford in January, and at the same time as all our offers for undergraduate study are made every year. Find out more about this initiative here.

The LMH Foundation Year

The Foundation Year is a free and fully funded, year-long course designed to enable students from under represented backgrounds to reach their potential. Students on the Foundation Year live and study at Lady Margaret Hall, a college of the University of Oxford. Over the academic year, students receive tuition in their chosen subject and you will also take a 'Preparation for Undergraduate Study' course. All of this teaching is aimed at preparing Foundation Year students to go on an excel either at Oxford University or at any other highly-selective university.

Lowered grade requirements - we recognise that achievement at GCSE and A Level is not necessarily an indicator of academic potential, and so we accept students onto the Foundation Year with grades that are lower than the traditional Oxford offer (e.g. BBB instead of AAA). More information about this programme is available on the LMH website.

Foundation Oxford

Oxford is developing an exciting foundation year course, which will be offered to state school students from less advantaged areas and who have also experienced personal disadvantage or a severely disrupted education. Those offered places will take part in a yearlong, bespoke subject-specific course at Oxford. All participants will be based at Oxford colleges, living and studying alongside other students. Those who pass the course will then progress to undergraduate study at Oxford. Once up and running, it is anticipated that the programme will support up to 50 students every year across selected subjects. Find out more about Foundation Oxford here.