University of Oxford

The University of Oxford is the oldest university in the English-speaking world, with over 900 years of history. Oxford’s deep roots are on display in its awe-inspiring architecture and traditions, and its focus on the future is evident in the university’s state-of-the-art facilities. In the city of Oxford, you’ll discover many contemporary restaurants, a traditional covered market, a bustling High Street with many shops, as well as some of the finest bookstores in the world. Oxford enrolls around 21,000 students, about 12,000 of whom are undergraduates.

The hallmark of the Oxford experience is the tutorial system. Tutorials are intense one-on-one Socratic lessons with a content expert. Each week, students will research, read, and critically analyze large amounts of material, culminating in the submission of an essay for critique and discussion with the tutor. Oxford tutors expect students to develop their own arguments and ideas. This type of instruction is challenging and is not for the faint of heart. Exceptional writing ability and time management skills are essential. It is this intense tutorial experience that makes Oxford one of the most rewarding places to study your chosen fields.

JMU students will be student affiliates at one of four Oxford colleges – New, St. Catherine’s, Christ Church, Jesus – and will enjoy all the college privileges of regular Oxford students, including access to libraries, social events, clubs and outings. See the college websites at:

Visit the Oxford Programme's website for more detailed information.

JMU Oxford Video

Studying at Oxford is a challenging academic experience. Participants should be intelligent, mature, hard-working students with a track record of academic excellence. Successful applicants possess the following qualifications and characteristics:

  • Minimum 3.4 cumulative GPA. 
  • Minimum 3.4 GPA within their major. Most participants have a major GPA well above 3.4. 
  • Ability to formulate original arguments based on critical reading and analysis.
  • Strong writing skills.
  • Interest in self-directed learning. 
  • Confidence, maturity, and strong time management skills.

The Oxford program is open to students in all majors who meet the above qualifications.


The ideal time to study abroad at Oxford is junior year or senior year. Advanced students could consider spring of sophomore year. JMU students can study at Oxford during the fall, spring, or summer semesters. There is no full-year option.

Courses and Credits

Students can study a wide range of subjects at Oxford. Because of the flexibility of the tutorial system, the Oxford program can accommodate almost any subject; however, courses in the traditional liberal arts and sciences (not including labs) are the easiest to accommodate.

A list of subjects taken by Oxford program students in the past can be found here; this list is not definitive and should be used as a starting point. Students will work with the program director to identify appropriate course selection and to arrange JMU credit.

The fall semester consists of the extended Michaelmas Term (September-December), which offers 15 credits. This includes a group tutorial (3 credits) during September and two one-on-one tutorials (12 credits) during Michaelmas term starting in October.

The spring semester includes two terms, Hilary (January-March) and Trinity (April-June), and offers 12 credits each term (24 credits total). Students take two one-on-one tutorials each term. 

The late Trinity (summer) term (May-June) offers 6 credits from one one-on-one tutorial course. 


The application for admission to Oxford has a number of parts, all of which must be received by the Center for Global Engagement (CGE) before your application can be processed. Please make certain that you have completed all steps in this application process.

A completed Oxford application consists of the following components as listed below:

  • JMU Study At Oxford Application.
  • "Statement of Purpose" essay indicating the reasons for choosing this program and how the choice of courses, program structure, city or country, relate to your past, present and future academic, career and personal goals (i.e., How do you think you will benefit from the experience?).
  • 2 Letters of Recommendation from current or former instructors or academic advisors.
  • 3 Passport sized photos as required for Oxford application.
  • JMU Oxford Program OPUS Application.

NOTE: Students are encouraged to contact Sara Hodges, the Study At Oxford, Cambridge and St. Andrews Program Director, for assistance with and prior to completing the OPUS Application.


Applications are collected throughout the academic year beginning on the first day of fall semester classes in August for the upcoming open terms. Your application will be processed after the following deadline:

  • January 1 for Summer.
  • March 1 for Fall.
  • April 15 for Spring prior to the year you intend to study abroad.

If the application deadline falls on a Saturday or Sunday, applications will be accepted until 5 p.m. on the next business day.

Applications received after these deadlines will be considered on a space-available basis.


The application is submitted online and prompts will guide you to complete all required items.

Financial Aid

JMU allows financial aid to be applied on Study At Oxford, Cambridge and St. Andrews Programs subject to the standard restrictions. For more information, please contact JMU's Financial Aid Office. 


Fall semester tuition and room is approximately $16,200. Estimate $1,600 for board.

Spring semester tuition and room is approximately $26,000. Estimate $2,500 for board.

Late Trinity term tuition and room is approximately $7,300. Estimate $630 for board.

For all terms an External Study Abroad fee will be required: $500 Fall/Spring and $250 Summer. 

All OPUS fees are dependent on exchange rates. Costs for room will vary by choice of accommodation.

JMU will bill students for tuition, room and External Program fee. Board, airfare, and ground travel costs are the responsibility of the student. 


Acceptance to the Oxford program is comprised of three stages:

  1. Admission is based on your general suitability for this program and will be considered based on a combination of factors:
    • Your most recent cumulative GPA (minimum 3.4 AND 3.4 GPA within your major).
    • Academic background in your proposed field of study.
    • Strength of faculty recommendations.
    • Essay and other application materials.
    • Class level or seniority.
  1. You will be informed of the admission decision by the posted notification dates. You will be notified by email of your acceptance status by an official letter from the Center for Global Engagement (CGE). Letters are posted in your online application. Please note that although you may receive informal communication from your program director regarding the status of your acceptance, your admission to the program is not official until you receive the acceptance notice from the CGE. Acceptance is contingent on maintaining the minimum GPA required for the program and on review of your record with Academic Affairs, Student Affairs and University Business Office.

  2. The Oxford Programme for Undergraduate Studies will process each application recommended by JMU. Notification from the host institution will be distributed to the CGE and shared with each candidate.

If you wish to participate, you will be required to electronically sign the Statement of Intent to Participate to accept the terms of the program and secure your place. This form must be completed by the deposit deadline stated in the official acceptance letter. The deposit payment receipt information must be received for the non-refundable deposit of $750. This deposit will be applied to the program fee charged by JMU.

If at any time you wish to withdraw from the program, you must inform the Center for Global Engagement (CGE), not the program faculty director. The CGE will not accept verbal cancellations in person or by phone; official notification of withdrawal should be made in writing or by email. Otherwise, you will continue to receive bills and be responsible for payment of the tuition and course fees and/or instructional fees and study abroad program expenses. Please note that we cannot refund your deposit if you choose to withdraw after accepting your place in the program. However, if your application is not approved by St. Andrews, Oxford or Cambridge, the deposit will be refunded as a credit on your student account.

If you have any additional questions or concerns, call CGE at 540-568-5209 or send an email to

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