The Oxford Summer Seminar

Grades 10-12
Session 1: July 30-August 6 2018
Session 2: August 6-13 2018
Single session: $2700
Double session: $4700

The Oxford Summer Seminar is one of our most flexible programs, offering a wide range of options for students whose summers are too busy to accommodate one of our longer, four-week events. Participants can stay for just one week, or for two, to undertake a “double major.” A rotating roster of Minor classes allows them to sample a different subject every afternoon with an array of academics and industry professionals. Held in Corpus Christi College during the height of summer, our students get all the learning and fun of one of our longer programs compressed into an intensive and immersive burst of fourteen days or fewer.


Students choose one major from 15 academic and creative courses, or two if they are doing the "double major." Our most popular courses include Critical Thinking, International Relations, and Medicine. Descriptions for these are below, and you can follow the link to read more about all our courses.

Critical Thinking

How might the rise of the “selfie stick” be related to the popularity of first-person video games? What does our obsession with professional sports say about us? And why exactly is Kim Kardashian famous? This course analyzes the strange phenomena that define contemporary society through radical postmodern philosophy. Students will be challenged to engage with writers from Jean Baudrillard to Slavoj Zizek as a means of critically reassessing the world around them.

International Relations

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.


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.

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Our teachers are academics and researchers drawn from the University, and established creative professionals. A few biographies are listed below, and you can follow the link to meet all our faculty.

Dr. Nafi Dilaver

BSc, M.Res, PhD St George's University of London 

Dr. Dilaver holds a PhD in reproductive physiology from St George's, University of London. He is currently completing a medical doctorate at Swansea University Medical School. He has extensive experience as a teacher at the University of London, where he has worked as a demonstrator, a problem-based learning tutor, and an international tutor. Dr. Dilaver is widely-published, and most recently contributed a co-authored chapter to Lubna Pal's book, Polycystic Ovary Syndrome: Current and Emerging Concepts.

Dr. Tristen Naylor 

BSocSci University of Ottowa, DPhil, MPhil University of Oxford 

Dr. Naylor is an International Relations Fellow at the London School of Economics. His work examines questions of status and group membership in international politics, and proposes new insights to improve the English School’s understanding of international society, its expansion, and its reproduction. Dr. Naylor was previously a Research Fellow within the Twenty-First Century Concert of Powers Research Group, the Lecturer in Diplomatic Studies and Politics at Christ Church, Oxford, and a Visiting Researcher at Sciences Po, Paris. 

Dr. Nicholas Pierpan

BA Bowdoin College, MA, PhD University of Oxford 

Dr. Pierpan is the Creative Writing Fellow at Wolfson College, Oxford. He attended Bowdoin College in Maine, and Lincoln College, Oxford, where he gained his doctorate. During his graduate education he began writing plays, and won Oxford University’s Cameron Mackintosh Award for New Writing. Since then, his plays have been performed internationally. He now writes for television, film, and radio. Dr. Pierpan won the 2013 Off West End Award for Most Promising New Playwright and was nominated for an Evening Standard Award the same year. Recently, he was commissioned to write an original television pilot for BBC drama. 

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Corpus Christi College is located in the ancient heart of Oxford and is home to The Oxford Seminar. Founded in 1517 by Richard Fox, then Bishop of Winchester, Corpus Christi College boasts an elaborate sundial, built in 1581, that still stands today. Early visitors included Catherine of Aragon and the great linguist and philosopher Erasmus of Rotterdam. The College President, John Rainolds, led the scholars who produced the King James Bible in 1611. More recent alumni include the philosopher Isaiah Berlin, writer Vikram Seth, and several British politicians in office today, including Ed Milliband, the former Leader of the Labour Party.


Our extracurricular program maintains a healthy balance between study and leisure time that allows students to relax and unwind. To that end, the Activities Directors organize daily social events and sports.  These typically include punting, dances, hikes, soccer, tennis, quidditch, cricket, running, chess tournaments and quiz nights, as well as plenty of time for fun, relaxation, sightseeing, and socializing with new friends. All of these activities provide our students with unparalleled exposure to Oxford’s many resources. In addition, they help students make friends and discover shared interests that settle them swiftly into their new surroundings. The certainty that they are in a secure and centrally located environment, as well as part of a supportive peer group, encourages our students to open their minds to the enriching personal and intellectual challenges that our programs present to them.

Useful Info for Parents


Every student is met personally at Heathrow or Gatwick airport upon arrival and escorted to Oxford. At the end of the program, they are accompanied back to the airport, where we oversee check-in and departure. A representative stays at the airport until every flight has departed.


Oriel is situated in a very safe neighborhood, with controlled access and twenty-four hour security. Day-to-day life is overseen by teams of Deans - professional educators drawn from leading schools in the US, Canada, and Australia. The College has a program office, in a central location, which is open and permanently staffed by Deans from before 8am until well past midnight. Every student checks in personally, twice, every evening, with the Deans on duty. The Program Director, Deans, residential staff, and some members of faculty live in the residences, ensuring round-the-clock care and supervision.

Student Safety, Rules, and Behavior

Program Blog

Every summer, students and teachers on The Oxford Summer Seminar maintain a blog, which provides unparalleled insight into daily life, classes, and activities.  Last summer’s blog is available here!  

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