English Literature

From William Shakespeare to Jane Austen, this track is designed to provide exciting and varied courses about the UK’s most celebrated authors. Each course explores the history of various authors along with close textual analysis of authorial style. Moreover, delegates will be able to bring famous texts to life through interactive discussion and engagement in classes.


About This Programme

Length English Literature courses take place two sessions, with one course available each week.
Available Dates Summer Session 2: 21 July – 03 August 2019
Summer Session 3: 04 August – 17 August 2019
Lectures, Exams & Credits Delegates will participate in one course per week.

An assignment will be given during each course (one examination per week). Course examination results will be listed in your official academic transcript. Workload of Summer Institute at Oriel College Oxford is designed to be equivalent to:

– 6 ECTS (3 US credits) per two-week session
– 12 ECTS (6 US credits) per four-week session

Oriel College (University of Oxford, UK) will award for each delegate who successfully graduates from the programme with a Certificate of Attendance and Achievement and an Academic Transcript.

The Academic Transcript will also be presented and will contain the following information:

– Courses attended and chosen lecture track
– Results of the weekly examinations
– Workload of each course

Full Board Accommodation Single dormitory room with shared bathroom. Single ensuite room is available for additional 250 GBP each session.

The accommodation fee includes breakfast, lunch and dinner Monday to Friday. On weekends only breakfast will be served.

Fees Please see our fees & tuition.
Prerequisites This is an open enrolment course, we recommend applicants to have prior knowledge or strong interest in the subject/course they are enrolling in.
Additional Information In addition to lectures given, this course also includes various extra-curricular activities such as social events & leisure activities, and excursions to famous places and historical landmarks. Learn more about Programme Information.


Course Details

  • Course Timetable
  • Overview
  • Course Description
  • Faculty
* Academic Programme Particulars: Each session is comprised of two weeks of tuition.
* Delegates are welcome to participate in multiple sessions. Each week, students will participate in a course of their choice in their preferred track.
* Each track offers courses in one academic discipline.
* It is possible for delegates to choose a course that is not in their track.
* As the beginning of the programme nears, enrolled delegates will be asked to select their courses.
* Delegates will be assigned to courses, subject to availability. While we are able to allocate most students to their preferred courses, on some occasions students will be allocated their second choice.
* Delegates are welcome to extend their stay by participanting in multiple sessions either in Oxford or our sister-programme Cambridge Summer Institute at Magdalene College, Cambridge.

For a typical week at Summer Institute, please click here.

Below is a draft schedule for Summer Institute at Oriel College (click to enlarge)

*Disclaimer* Changes to the course description, topics, programme structure, and schedules may occur due to the availability of faculty members at the actual time of the programme.

The Academic Writing & English literature track gives students the great opportunity to study academic writing, literature, linguistics and creative writing in Oxford (UK). All lectures are held at Oriel College (University of Oxford, UK).

Our programme offers a unique blend of lectures from well-known professors, excursions to famous places and visits to successful organisations and institutions. You will benefit from a good feel of the British culture and from a better understanding of the British literature. The programme includes the following courses:

  • Shakespeare I
  • Shakespeare II
  • Queens of English Literature
  • Oxford as a Literary Ground
  • Critical Thinking
  • Intercultural Communication
  • Research Methodology and Academic Writing
  • Business and Legal Communication


1. Shakespeare I

Man of the Theatre, An Introduction: This course will offer delegates a strong foundation for understanding the various facets of English Literature across eras and genres, tempering historical and ideological depth with attention to textual details. Prose poetry, and drama will be considered in dynamic ways, inflected by engagement with various political, socio-economic, religious, philosophical, and cultural ideas. This course will cover three main genres of Shakespeare’s theatre: tragedies, histories and comedies. Delegates will discuss selected scenes from key plays, develop reading skills, translate Shakespeare’s English into modern-day English and analyse issues raised in Shakespeare’s work.

2. Shakespeare II

An Actor’s Approach to Shakespeare: This course focuses on the language and production history of Shakespeare’s plays, emphasising ‘practice as research’. Delegates will closely examine Shakespeare’s texts in order to answer the question; ‘what do actors make of these lines?’ and how does this differ from what scholars make of them?

3. Queens of English Literature

The course will give students an overview of the major works of Jane Austen and the Brontë sisters. Students will learn to:

  • Perform close textual analysis of the literary style of each of these authors;
  • Situate these texts in their historical, cultural, and literary contexts;
  • Explore the critical reception and afterlives of these works;
  • Conduct independent research on the connections between these texts;

This course will give delegates an overview of the major works of Jane Austen and the Brontë sisters. Delegates will examine how these texts are in conversation with one another. They will discover the use of literary devices through close textual analysis; learn how these texts engage with literary form and genre; explore how social, cultural, and literary contexts shaped these texts; and debate the views of critics. They will also gain experience of an independent research project, culminating in a group presentation.

Each session will comprise a 90-minute interactive lecture, which will incorporate short small-group exercises where delegates discuss the questions raised in the lecture. Delegates on this course are expected to be familiar with the primary texts, and be willing to read beyond these texts in the relevant secondary literature. Delegates should also be willing to conduct independent research as part of the course, culminating in the final assessment: a group presentation.

4. Oxford as a Literary Ground

This course will focus on fantasy literature composed in Oxford. We will explore literary works by Lewis Caroll (Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Through the Looking Glass), J.R.R. Tolkien (The Lord of the Rings), C.S. Lewis (The Chronicles of Narnia), and Philip Pullman (His Dark Materials, The Book of Dust). Students will be introduced to the historical and cultural significance of these texts, their literary themes, and the sources used for inspiration – particularly from medieval and biblical literatures. Students will also examine the effects of these literary works on later cultural expressions, including the Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling as well as the fantasy genre in film. The course will highlight numerous relevant landmarks around the city, with suggestions for field trips to various locations. Students are encouraged to experience their own Oxford fantasy.

5. Critical Thinking

Students will learn how to identify and critique implicit claims in academic and journalistic writing, what characterises weak arguments and how to formulate strong ones, as well as how to interrogate visual arguments in video or photographic media. Critical thinking is the ability to think clearly and rationally about what to do or what to believe. Common topics include: understanding the logical connections between ideas, solving problems systematically, evaluating arguments, identifying mistakes in and the relevance of reasoning. Critical thinking should not be confused with being argumentative or critical of other people. Critical thinking allows us to acquire knowledge, improve our theories, and strengthen arguments. This has great importance in the context of enhancing work processes and improving social institutions.

6. Intercultural Communication

This course will look at key academic and practical topics involved in intercultural communication. Drawing on the fields of literary studies, linguistics, anthropology, ethnography, and cultural studies, delegates will analyse topics including, ‘Communicating between cultures’, ‘Translation’, ‘Verbal and Non-verbal Communication’, and ‘Cultures and Concepts’.

7. Research Methodology and Academic Writing

Students will acquire practical skills, including how to interpret essay questions, how to structure and reference an academic essay, as well as how to write with clarity, brevity and maximum impact. Significantly, delegates will acquire academic guidance on how to productively conduct research for an academic or professional essay/thesis/dissertation/report.

8. Business and Legal Communication

This course is designed to develop an individual’s confidence and ability to use English within a professional environment. Covering topics such as negotiation, business presentations, client communication, and self-communication, this course is an excellent preparation for future experience in the business or legal sectors of an English-speaking environment both with clients and about focus on the reading, writing, and listening skills of the English language in a business context. By being able to understand and use the business language, participants will be able to further their career in both their work quality and building relationships among colleagues and clients. This course will provide delegates the ability to communicate on an international level using precise and correct legal language. Upon completion of the course, participants will improve their confidence in explaining points of law, enhance their drafting and editing skills, and ultimately represent their organisation in a more effective manner.


For details please see our Faculty page: https://oxfordsummerabroad.com/faculty/



Apply For This Programme

To apply for this programme, simply fill out our online application form. You can also download our PDF application form, fill it out, and email the completed form back to us.

Please send all completed application forms to apply@oxfordsummerabroad.com. If you have any questions regarding our application process, please feel free to contact us at anytime.

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