FAQs on the benefits of Foundations

Frequently asked questions for Oxford Summer Courses Foundations

  • What is Oxford Summer Courses Foundations?

    Foundations is a modular online course that gives you the skills needed to make the most out of your in-person course and beyond. After taking this course, students will be able to take ownership of their learning experience at Oxford Summer Courses and beyond, so they can confidently get ahead throughout their education.

  • Why should I sign up to Foundations?

    Foundations is an important part of your Oxford Summer Courses experience. Its aim is to prepare you for your in-person experience, via self-paced learning. By the end, you'll be able to take ownership of your learning experience at Oxford Summer Courses and beyond, so you can confidently get ahead throughout your education.

  • Will I be graded?

    No, you will not receive an overall grade for either the Oxford Summer Courses Foundations or in-person element of your Oxford Summer Courses programme.

  • Is there a certificate?

    Yes! Once you've completed all the lessons you'll be able to download a digital certificate to show you've completed Foundations. This is separate to the certificate you'll receive at your in-person graduation.

  • Can I have a look at Foundations before deciding to sign up?

    Yes, we are able to share information and example content. Please get in touch with Admissions or Student Services to find out more.

FAQs on accessing Foundations

  • How much is it?

    The Oxford Summer Courses Foundations programme is free, and is designed to greatly enhance your Oxford Summer Courses in-person experience. If you would like to know more about how to do this, please contact us.

  • Is there a minimum academic standard for students to join?

    Our course content can support students of all academic abilities. All we ask of you is to have a genuine passion for learning and a sufficient level of written and spoken English.

  • Do I need a visa to be allowed to access Foundations?

    No, you do not need a visa to study online.

  • What will happen once I've signed up?

    Once you decide to supplement your in-person experience with our Oxford Summer Courses Foundations, you will receive platform login details. Please use the details to sign up to the platform to start your student journey with us. After signing up, you will have access to a range of online preparatory content to be reviewed over the weeks and months before your in-person course. You'll be informed when more content is made available.

FAQs on links to the in-person programme

  • How is Foundations tailored to me and my in-person course?

    The content of these modules is tailored to the students attending in-person, based on feedback from past students and the expectations we set for each programme. Whilst Foundations is not tailored to individual students or subjects, it is specific to a students' age and choice of in-person course.

  • What if I'm signed up to more than one in-person course?

    If you are joining us in multiple locations, or for different programmes, your Foundations course will be tailored to reflect this.

  • Is there any point in signing up to Foundations long before my in-person course starts?

    Absolutely! We highly recommend you start the modules as soon as you can, even if it's many months before your course. Not only will they help you to prepare for your in-person experience, they'll also support your educational journey outside of Oxford Summer Courses. The sooner you start, the more opportunities you'll have to practice your skills and become a true independent learner. Don't worry if you run out of time though, you'll still have access during your in-person course.

  • Remind me, what will I get at the end of my in-person course?

    At the end of the entirety of your Oxford Summer Course programme, on completion of your last class and having submitted all of the required work, you will be issued your course certificate within 14 days. You will receive a personalised letter of recommendation from your tutor within 21 days. The letter of recommendation will include a summary of the course content, the work you have undertaken and completed, and your individual performance.

FAQs on the material

  • How many modules are there?

    There are five sections: 'Goals for the future', 'Learning together', 'Learning independently', 'Enjoying the atmosphere', and 'Reflecting and improving'. The exact number of modules depends on which in-person programme you'll be attending. If you'd like more details, contact our Admissions team for a full syllabus.

  • Who are the instructors?

    Oxford Summer Courses Foundations has been created by members of our in-house team who have extensive experience designing and delivering our in-person courses. They include alumni of the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge, PhDs, former teachers and experienced tutors. All content has been subjected to rigorous quality assurance measures by a qualified teacher and other educational experts.

  • What do you mean by self-paced learning?

    Self-paced learning allows you to access course materials at your speed, meaning that you can take the time to focus on areas that you find challenging, and breeze through subjects that you already know. It also helps you to learn independently - you can manage your education in a way which encourages independent thought and critical thinking.

  • What study materials will I need to get started?

    You don't need any specific study materials, other than making sure that you can take notes as you need. All the materials you need are provided through our online learning platform.

  • Will there be live sessions?

    Currently there are no live sessions as part of Foundations, but we will notify you if this changes. Instead, keep an eye out for invites to our webinar series.

  • Will there be subtitles?

    No, so please make sure you can focus on what is being said in the videos. You can pause and replay them as many times as you like. If you have an accessibility query meaning you require subtitles, please contact our Student Services team.

  • How much work will I need to submit?

    You will be working at your own pace with no compulsory requirements to submit pieces of work. To receive your certificate, you must work through each lesson and mark it as complete, then fill in our survey at the end.

  • What sort of feedback will I get?

    There are quizzes throughout Foundations that will allow you to test yourself and receive instant feedback. You can retake these quizzes as many times as you like. More detail on the feedback you will receive during your in-person course can be found in our in-person FAQs

FAQs on practicalities

  • How flexible are the timings?

    Foundations is designed for flexibility. You can work at your own pace before, during, and after your in-person course until 30th September. Once each module becomes available, you can work through the lessons in any order, and can review them as many times as you like.

  • How long is each lesson?

    The lessons vary in length from 5 to 20 mins. Each module is made up of different numbers of lessons and will vary depending on your in-person course. In total there will be around 8 to 14 hours of content to work through before you'll have completed the lessons and be able to access your certificate. This doesn't include time you may choose to spend working on goals, exploring reading lists and other resources or completing suggested reflections.

  • Where should I be when studying this course?

    In order to receive the full impact of the course, please access somewhere where you can listen, think and type without disturbing others. Videos are essential parts of the course, so choose somewhere where you can focus. Please make sure you are in an environment where you can participate fully. You may wish to use headphones.

  • What sort of device should I use to access the platform?

    Feel free to use any device you have, our platform works well on laptops, desktop computers, tablets and mobile phones. The online course is facilitated through a learning management system. It is the responsibility of the student to ensure that they have the proper hardware and software requirements, along with access to Wi-Fi, to be able to participate in the course.

  • What operating system is recommended?

    For desktop computers/laptops: Windows 7 and newer (users on Windows 10 need to download the Windows 10 Anniversary Update to submit assignments), Mac OSX 10.6 and newer, Linux. 3. The computer should be no older than 5 years (newer where possible), with 1GB of RAM, 2GHz processor.

  • What's the recommended broadband speed? And is there a specific browser I have to use?

    Along with compatibility and web standards, the platform can accommodate low bandwidth environments (minimum 512 kbps).

  • What support is there if I have a problem?

    We provide access to our technical support via our Student Services team. Simply get in touch at studentservices@oxfordsummercourses.com and we'll make sure any potential issues are resolved as soon as possible.

  • When do I need to turn up for the lessons?

    Self-paced learning means that once we release new modules, it's completely up to you. We'd recommend that you don't leave too long between lessons within each module, as they will build upon each other. However, you can go back and review completed lessons as many times as you like to refresh your memory.

FAQs for parents

  • How can I track and assess my child's progress?

    There will be a progress bar available within our online learning platform that will share the topics covered and the work completed. Please visit the Dashboard to track your progress and view pending lessons.

  • How do you safeguard children online?

    All of our staff, whether in the Head Office or tutors, have undergone Safeguarding Training, and have had an official background check as part of the UK Government's Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS). We also practice 'Safer Recruiting,' which follows UK Government best practices for ensuring that all our staff are hired with confidence and can work safely with young people. Our Safeguarding Policy is available through our website. Oxford Summer Courses Foundations has no live content. There is no messaging function on our platform.

Other frequently asked questions

  • What's included in the online modules available to me?

    Included in the online modules are: - all resources and learning materials accessible through our own learning platform - access to course resources up to 4 weeks after you have completed your programme - up to 9 hours of academic and preparatory content - key resources to download that will be vital for the in-person element of the course - content delivered via company experts in diverse and interactive ways.

  • How does the course work?

    The content in Oxford Summer Courses Foundations can be accessed at your own pace, whenever it suits you. Our expert team have crafted material that is specific to the educational experience at Oxford Summer Courses.

  • Will the course be shaped to my needs and preferences?

    We have over 10 years' experience educating international students, and we have a tutoring team from the best educational institutions in the world. The in-person element of our courses is designed by drawing on all of that expertise and experience.

  • Who do I talk to if I have questions about the content of Oxford Summer Courses Foundations?

    Your course overview can be found on the Oxford Summer Courses Foundations platform.

  • Will Oxford Summer Courses Foundations give advice on university access, or higher education in the UK?

    Oxford Summer Courses Foundations will focus explicitly on content aiming to prepare you for the in-person element of Oxford Summer Courses. Oxford Summer Courses Foundations content will not be specific to your chosen course subject. If you are interested, we offer an alternative package which is specifically designed to support students in understanding the routes into higher education in the UK.