English plus Academic Subjects

• A taste of university level subjects

• prepare for Cambridge English exam

• Improve your Academic literacies 

• Study alongside native English speakers

A stimulating alternative to the traditional English language course

This course combines English for Academic Purposes with university level subject classes. Ideal for high level students, those on a gap year or pre-master’s students preparing for further study.

Teaching is excellent and results in high levels of student engagement and motivation to learn  – ISI PFE March 2019


Key Facts: English plus Academic Subjects

Age: 16+
Level: From upper intermediate (CEF B2) to advanced (CEF C2)
Start date: 6 September 2020 and 10 January 2021
Course length: 14 weeks
Class size: Maximum 12 students
Lessons (hours): 19 (17.4) Monday to Friday
Lesson type: 10 of English for Academic Purposes and 9 of academic subjects per week. 
Fees: From £7896
Fees include: Tuition, self-catered residence or homestay, and travel insurance
Accommodation: College residence or homestay 
Sample timetable: English plus Academic Subjects  
Optional extras: Lunch available Monday to Friday – £46 per week
  One-to-one English language classes – £59 per lesson
  Excursions/Activities – £5 – £30
  Airport transfers from £120 – Depending on pick-up from Heathrow, Gatwick, Luton or Stansted airport
  Courier charge for visa support documents – approx £25

Entry requirements: 17 years of age or over. English language level from IELTS 5.5 (or equivalent = B2 European Common Framework)


Key benefits include:

  • – Small and interactive study groups
  • – Intellectually-engaging classes help you improve your English language competence
  •  External exam assessment (Cambridge/IELTS) provides focus
  • – Deepening your understanding of a subject you have already studied or
  • – Sampling a new subject for future further/higher education
  • – Excellent Careers and Higher Education guidance
  • Studying alongside native English speakers (on 14-week programme)
  • Mixing in an international community
  • Experiencing an Undergraduate Programme model of study
  • Improving your application to competitive universities
  • – ‘International Classroom’ criterion required by some European universities (eg Maastricht, Erasmus University Rotterdam) met by the course
  • Full programme of activities and excursions

Subject areas for the 14-week programme include:

Our Semester course includes a wide range of subjects including Business, Economics, Communications and Media, Psychology as well as Social Sciences. We also have a 5-week Compact course starting in May 2020. If you would like further details please click on tab below.

Progression options

If you are interested in enrolling for the full academic year, and have IELTS 5.5 (upper intermediate), you may take English plus Academic Subjects in the autumn semester and progress to the Undergraduate Programme in the spring semester.


Term Dates and Prices

International College – dates and prices 2019-2020
International College – dates and prices 2020-2021

Interested in studying much more than just English?

Semester Course

The Semester Course combines English Language and academic subjects:

English for Academic Purposes + Academic subjects
10 lessons per week   choose three academic subjects Two or three lessons per week for each subject choice


English for Academic Purposes Your lessons explore contemporary, cross-course themes through the medium of English and develop high-level English Language and study skills:

  • sample themes: Society & Responsibilities; Oxford & University Life; World Customs & Traditions
  • teaching stimuli include printed materials, study visits, online resources, television documentaries, DVDs and YouTube.
  • language study focuses on developing advanced level competence in areas such as register, collocation and idiomatic usage and academic study skills
  • internal assessment includes formal and informal writing activities, an extended essay based on your own research and an oral presentation
  • external assessment through externally validated Cambridge Exams (CAE or CPE) or IELTS, as available


Your three academic subjects will teach you to research, write essays, give presentations, debate and think critically – learning skills is as important for your future as learning course material. Your academic subject classes give you the opportunity to develop and apply your English in a different environment. All academic courses are open to beginners and will help you either deepen your understanding of a subject you may have studied before in your own language or try out something new. Your academic subject classes will help you understand what you would most like to study at university. It may be something new you discover with us here in Oxford.

You will study each subject for three hours a week, in small interactive classes of 6-12 students. Languages are taught in small tutorial groups of 1-2 students and meet for two hours each week. When submitting your application please select six courses, numbered in order of preference 1-6; we make every effort to give students their first three choices.

Course options

Subject Area Course
Art History Oxford Art and Architecture
Business and Economics International Business in the News
  Introduction to Economics
Communications and Media Film Studies
  Cross Cultural Communication
English Literature Introduction to English Literature
  Oxford and Fantasy Fiction
Language tutorials Available to EAS students
Mathematics College Algebra
Philosophy and Religion Introduction to Philosophy
  Comparative Religion
Social Sciences Introduction to Politics
  Introduction to Psychology
  Introduction to Sociology
  International Relations
  Introduction to British History
Studio Art Fundamentals of Drawing
Semester course: Art History - Communication and Media - English Literature - Studio Art

Art History

Oxford Art and Architecture

Oxford is famous for its architecture, museums and history, a “sweet city with her dreaming spires” in the words of the poet Matthew Arnold.  Learn a thousand years of art history by exploring the significant buildings and art collections in Oxford from the Anglo-Saxon, medieval and renaissance periods through the Victorian age to the present day. The course will also show how Oxford and English traditions connect to the bigger European picture as English culture and taste responded to developments in France and Italy. The course will be taught primarily through study excursions into Oxford, presentations, and class discussion. Students will have the opportunity to focus on a particular architect, artist, building, collection, or individual work of art for further independent study in greater depth.

Communications and Media

Film Studies

‘Cinema is truth twenty-four times a second’ (Jean-Luc Godard). The purpose of this course is to introduce students to the theory, history and criticism of film. We will be discussing different ways of interpreting film and applying some of these ideas to various selected texts. Some of the analytical models we will employ, such as semiotics or psychoanalysis, will explore the complex language of the medium (how film communicates); others, such as genre and auteur criticism, will examine the ideological relationship between cinema and society (what film communicates). Special emphasis will be placed on the multiple relationships between Hollywood cinema and the national cinemas of Europe, and between literature and film. There will be DVD screenings throughout the course, and excerpts from a diverse range of classic and contemporary films will be shown in class.

Cross Cultural Communication

What does it mean to be cross-cultural? We live in an age when culture is exchanged more easily, and communicated through more media, than at any time in history. This communications course seeks to understand how society, the arts and media combine to create and share culture. This interdisciplinary course combines elements of media studies, sociology, anthropology and literary studies to understand cross-cultural issues locally and internationally.  We will consider themes such as ‘Britishness and Empire’, The West and the ‘other’ and the U.S. and UK relationship.  Different forms of media will also be considered: the impact of television on cultural identity, the impact of popular music across borders and both news media and new digital media. This course will help students develop their own critical and communication skills as they learn to understand how they are shaped by and share culture.

English Literature

Introduction to English Literature

If you would like to refine your English by learning from the greatest English writers, then this course is for you. It is designed as a first course in English Literature for non-native speaker students, and will take you on a journey through literature from Shakespeare to the present day.  We will read significant works in their original literary and historical contexts, drawing on the history of Oxford as one of the most famous centres for the creation of English literature. Proceeding chronologically, students will engage in detail with different kinds of texts, including poems, plays, novels, and essays. Students will learn appropriate critical terms as they proceed and will develop skills they can apply to other forms of writing in English. Participants will be encouraged to reflect on the development of English literature while focusing on individual writers and their critical reputations.

Oxford and Fantasy Fiction

Oxford is the birthplace of modern fantasy literature, from Lewis Carroll’s ‘Wonderland’, through C.S. Lewis’s Narnia and J.R.R. Tolkien’s Middle-Earth to the imaginative world of Philip Pullman. This course will study this literary genre, its themes, critical approaches to fantasy and the authors’ lives and links with Oxford. We will consider the historical contexts, literary influences and political and religious ideas which helped shape fantasy. The course will also consider literary adaptation, film and the context in which we should understand the most successful recent fantasy world of J.K. Rowling, the film adaptations of which also drew upon Oxford for inspiration.

Studio Art

Fundamentals of Drawing

This course takes you drawing in Oxford’s many museums, galleries and iconic buildings and helps you develop practical skills and cultural understanding. The course will look at various aspects of drawing from charcoal sketching to print making, either working in the college’s award-winning art studio as we explore the beautiful city of Oxford. Students will increase their visual awareness of the world around them and be encouraged to develop independent and original creative projects and processes.


Can photography make the world a better place? How does it represent our experience? Why are some photographs better than others? These and other questions will guide a lively exploration of photography on both a practical and theoretical level. We will investigate simple ways to improve the quality of our pictures and make full use of Oxford’s galleries and uniquely photogenic environment. This will be consolidated by college-based lessons that use computer editing and older, darkroom techniques. The course will conclude with students making a portfolio of their best images and displaying them in a small exhibition for others to enjoy. 


Using watercolour, acrylic, collage and printmaking, students will explore Oxford through observation and their own imagination and creativity. They will develop a visual awareness of the world around them through sketching, researching and observing. There will be many field trips to the city’s museums, galleries, parks and rivers as well as work in college’s award-winning, purpose-built art studio.


Semester course: Business - Maths - Economics

Business, Mathematics and Economics

International Business in the News

The marketplace is becoming increasingly globalized; this affects every aspect of business. This course will provide insight into international business strategies in a globalised world. We will cover international trade and international business theory as well as government influence on the pattern of world trade. We will use case studies from current affairs to discuss the economics and politics of international trade.  Global business, finance and economic news will be reviewed and analysed as we learn to understand the impact of international and national economic policy on international business.

Introduction to Economics

John Maynard Keynes described economics as “a science of thinking in terms of models, joined to the art of choosing models which are relevant to the contemporary world”. This course is designed to offer first time economics students an introduction to the most important models, concepts and issues in economics. We will explore micro economic concepts such as market supply and demand, goods, costs and industrial organisation, as well as macroeconomic concepts such as: money, interest rates, inflation, unemployment and macroeconomic policy. We will also consider the role of government in the economy and learn different economic models from the command economy to capitalism and the free market. You will learn how economists understand and analyse both how society functions and how you behave.

College Algebra

College Algebra is intended for students who wish to improve their understanding of basic mathematics or who wish to attain the standard level of mathematics required for general courses in higher education. The course is designed to highlight the application of mathematics to everyday life problems and is particularly useful for students who intend to study social sciences, management, business or other courses that do not require the additional topics of Trigonometry and Calculus. 

If you plan to apply to Dutch universities with specific requirements in maths, and don’t have the required level equivalent to the Dutch VWO Mathematics B (Wiskunde B) option, you can prepare for the James Boswell and other Mathematics deficiency tests in a small class here at St. Clare’s. Courses with this requirement include International Business Administration at Erasmus University Rotterdam and Maastricht University. 

Semester course: History - Politics - Psychology - Sociology - International Relations

Social Sciences

Introduction to Politics

This course introduces students to the purpose, character and organisation of modern political life. We will consider political theory and how, practically, politics and different forms of government work. Students will analyse the most common forms of political systems, from presidential and parliamentary structures which engage with ideas of democracy to authoritarian forms of power. We will study key terms such as the constitution of a state, political parties, elections and political ideologies from Marxism and fascism to liberalism and anarchism.  Other themes include the relationship between faith and politics, the role of the media in political life, ethics and politics and how different social issues impact the political landscape. An introduction to politics will help you understand your place in the world around you in an age of political turmoil.

Introduction to Psychology

How do different psychological theories explain the way we perceive and think about the world? How did different psychological theories develop? Which methods are used and have been used to understand how people think? This course will introduce the discipline of psychology from key ideas to an understanding of research methods. We will consider how the human brain works, what we mean by terms like ‘mind’ or ‘self’ and how social influences change our behaviour and shape our understanding of who we are. We will also consider how children learn to think and develop an understanding of who they are. Through a series of research tasks students will understand how psychologists research, use data and present their findings.

Introduction to Sociology

What makes people behave the way they do? Are our actions determined by forces beyond our immediate control or are we able to choose and select their behaviour with an element of free choice? What is more important: feeling we have a separate individual identity or that we belong to a social group?  Sociology is the study of human social relationships and institutions and this introductory course attempts to answer these and other questions. Other topics include: social divisions and power, family and social life, globalisation and religion and how identity is shaped through the media. The course will also introduce sociological research methods and key figures in sociology: Karl Marx, Émile Durkheim and Max Weber. Sociology helps students build their critical skills and complements many other subject areas from Economics and Politics to Psychology.

International Relations

We live in a globalized world where international relations seem less stable than ever. This course is designed to introduce students to past and current issues in the field of international relations: the nature of war and conflict, the role of international bodies such as the UN, human rights and the threat of global terrorism.  We will also consider global economic development and the challenges of environmental change and mass-migration. The course will provide insight into international politics and the foreign policy and diplomacy practiced by the main world powers like the U.S.A., China and Russia. Do we still live in the age of the ‘superpowers’ or are we moving to a ‘multipolar’ world?  St Clare’s provides a stimulating, international and diverse environment in which to reflect upon and debate these issues and where you will learn to understand our changing world.

Introduction to British History

How did Britain become modern, democratic, and multicultural? Are these terms appropriate to describe Britain in the 21st century? This course examines the historical origins of contemporary debates over British domestic politics, foreign policy, and national identity that persist to this day. We will focus on specific themes, including: the transition from a powerful monarchy to a parliamentary democracy, the basis and functioning of empires and imperial power, and the political development of (and changing power relations between) the nations that comprise the British Isles. The course will be taught primarily through seminars, debates, presentations, primary source work, workshops, and field trips to museums and galleries in Oxford and London.

Semester course: Philosophy and Religion

Philosophy and Religion

Introduction to Philosophy

What can philosophy tell us about our-selves and our world? This introductory course examines some of the key thoughts and thinkers in the history of Western Philosophy, from Plato and Aristotle, through Descartes to Nietzsche and Sartre, among others. The course aims to equip the students with philosophical tools to aid their critical thinking. The course will not only question what we think we know and how we come to know it, but students will also identify the application of philosophical ideas and how they operate in the applied fields of religion, politics and morality. By engaging with a range of different perspectives in Western philosophy across 2,500 years, students will receive a broad based foundation to the subject. The history of philosophical thought relates to many other subject areas, from law and economics to psychology and politics, and so this course helps support many future academic paths.


Is ‘goodness’ a matter of fact or a matter of opinion?’ What is meant by ‘good’, ‘bad’, ‘right’ and ‘wrong’?  Ethics is an important area of philosophy with broad interdisciplinary applications. This course will examine and illuminate the nature of moral problems in everyday life both in theory and practice. Students will learn to appreciate what is at stake in moral debates, understand ethical issues and learn to engage with them from the perspective of different theoretical positions. Topics include human and animal rights, environmental ethics, war and genocide, euthanasia, justice and equality. This is an interdisciplinary course which will benefit those interested in law, politics, medicine, religion and the media.

Comparative Religion

What is the nature of belief? This introductory study of Comparative Religion aims to teach students about the phenomenon of religion from social, cultural and philosophical perspectives and will consider the nature and basis of belief. We will study what constitutes a religion and what its key features are; we will consider the similarities and differences of world religions in terms of both beliefs and practices. We will consider Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism among other religions. The key areas focused upon include the concept of God or divinity, sacred texts, festivals, ethics and life after death. The course will encourage interdisciplinary studies in the humanities and social sciences as we consider religion from a variety of perspectives including those of Hegel, Marx and Freud. This course will help students understand the impact religion has on the culture and politics of our globalized world.

Compact Course


Age: 16+
Level: From upper intermediate (CEF B2) to advanced (CEF C2)
Start date: 10 May 2020 and 9 May 2021
Course length: 5 weeks
Class size: Maximum 12 students
Lessons (hours): 19 (17.4) Monday to Friday
Lesson type: 10 of English for Academic Purposes and 9 of academic subjects per week
Tuition fees From £,2820
Accommodation: College residence or homestay 
Accommodation fees: from £246 per week
Sample timetable: English plus Academic Subjects  
Course content:  our teaching approach follows a Theme of the Week (details listed below)
Optional extras: Lunch available Monday to Friday – £46 per week
  One-to-one English language classes – £59 per lesson
  Excursions/Activities – £5 – £30
  Airport transfers from £120 – Depending on pick-up from Heathrow, Gatwick, Luton or Stansted airport
  Courier charge for visa support documents – approx £25

The course structure is:

  • 10 lessons per week English language
  • 9 lessons per week of 3 Academic Subjects e.g. Philosophy, Film Studies, Art and Architecture, etc


English Language Classes

  • High level academic English
  • Academic literacies for Higher Education
  • Preparation for Cambridge or IELTS exams
  • Culturally and intellectually stimulating themes

  The English Language component of the course includes culturally and intellectually stimulating themes

  • International identity and Global Citizenship
  • Generational divide: the haves and the have-nots
  • Cultural dominance, language decay and death
  • Environmental degradation
  • Legacy issues in the world today


Academic Subjects

We ask you to number the subject choices in order of preference from 1 to 6 (one being your first choice). You study three subjects from the list below.

      1. Film Adaptation: From the Page to the Screen

Explore how stories are transformed as they move from the printed page to the screen. What is lost, challenged or changed through this process of adaptation?  Each week the class will discuss the original literary text, and study the production, transmission and reception of the subsequent film.  Each week there will a screening of the film under review.

      1. Am I Free? – The Philosophy of Freedom

Are you free?  How do we understand the idea of individual and political freedom in philosophy?

      1. Oxford Art and Architecture

Learn about both the history of art and the history of architecture as you explore Oxford. This course uses Oxford as an open classroom as you explore the buildings and art collections of Oxford from the Middle Ages and Renaissance to the 20th century.

      1. Tribes: National Identity, Diversity and Tolerance

How do we define our identity in this globally connected world?  This course will examine how globalisation has changed and challenged national identity, multiculturalism and human rights. How has your ‘tribe’ changed?

      1. J. R.R. Tolkien: Understanding Middle-Earth and the Middle Ages

Oxford is the birthplace of fantasy fiction and Tolkien’s Middle-Earth. This course explores how Tolkien used the literature and history of the Middle Ages to create the most influential imaginative world in literature.

      1. Art and the Museum: Exploring Oxford Creatively through its Art

Develop your creative and artistic skills as you explore the landscape and art collections of Oxford and complete your work in our new art studio.

Contact us

Please fill in this form to submit an enquiry about our English plus Academic Subject course.

You may also wish to get in touch to arrange a campus tour or find out what it is like to live and study in the city of Oxford.


Contact Manuela on:
+44 1865 517706
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St Clare's, Oxford