A semester abroad studying STEM at Oxford

SCIO is excited to announce that it is expanding its disciplinary offering to its Registered Visiting Students to include many STEM fields (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) drawing on the high calibre teaching and research of the University of Oxford.

Applications are managed through our BestSemester website: apply now.

As part of its Scholars’ Semester in Oxford (SSO) programme, from autumn 2018 SCIO will offer courses in the following areas:

  • Biological sciences (e.g. animal behaviour, ecology, disease, and cells and genes)
  • Chemistry (e.g. electrochemistry, quantum mechanics and spectroscopy, and soft condensed matter)
  • Mathematics (e.g. multivariate calculus and mathematical models, number theory, and logic and set theory)
  • Statistics (e.g. metric spaces and complex analysis, statistical machine learning, and applied probability)
  • Physics (e.g. classical mechanics and special relativity, quantum physics, and plasma physics)
  • Theoretical computer science (e.g. intelligent systems, machine learning, and computational game theory)
  • Earth sciences (e.g. palaeobiology, volcanology, and planetary chemistry)

During Oxford’s full term STEM students will take primary tutorials (6 credits for 8 weekly meetings) and secondary tutorials (3 credits for 4 weekly meetings). Either or both of these can be in STEM subjects. Students taking STEM tutorials will attend non lab-based lectures and classes offered by the University of Oxford during their study at SCIO. (In some areas, following University of Oxford practice, students may be taught in small groups, not individual tutorials.)

Please note that for practical reasons Registered Visiting Students are not able to do lab-based or other practical work, or internships or practices.

Megan Loumagne

In addition to the new tutorials offered, those majoring in the sciences and technology can choose to take part in a seminar on science and religion led by our Director of Studies in Science and Religion, Megan Loumagne (4 credits). They can also choose to specialise in the history of science for the British culture course (4 credits) on topics ranging from the intellectual and scientific contributions of Robert Boyle and Francis Bacon to the impact of Charles Darwin. Like all SSO students, STEM students can focus all their studies in a single discipline or combine two or more disciplines across their four courses (two tutorials, seminar, and British culture).

If you would like to study STEM subjects at Oxford email [email protected] to discuss your STEM tutorial requests. The examples above are illustrative only. Many other tutorials are available. Further guidance of the tutorials on offer is under preparation, and will be published once ready.  All students attending the SSO programme at Oxford require a GPA of 3.7 or higher.

A SCIO STEM student reflects on his time at Oxford

My experience at Oxford transformed me as a student and as a person. From essay-based tutorials, I learned to read texts more rapidly and critically, and my writing became more concise, punchy, and cogently argued. … I cannot overstate the impact of the SCIO program on my development as a young academic and scientist.

Wondering what studying STEM for a semester of Oxford would be like? Read the full interview with Luke Arend, a SCIO STEM alumni and now a neuroscience researcher at MIT’s Center for Brains, Minds and Machines, and find out.

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