What Does Oxford University Specialise In
The Historic Radcliffe Camera building in Oxford, UK, which houses an ancient library.
The Historic Radcliffe Camera building in Oxford, UK, which houses an ancient library.

What Does Oxford University Specialise In?

Jasmyne Jeffery December 2, 2022

Everybody knows that Oxford University is more than just a good university. But is there a specific course that it encouraged more than others? We look at what does Oxford University specialise in and how many courses you can take there.

By attending Oxford University, you will already be getting one of the best educations in the world. The globally renowned university delivers courses in a vast range of areas. But are there degrees that the university is best at? Plenty of universities have specialisms and we find out if Oxford is one of them.

What Does Oxford University Specialise In?

Although Oxford University does not have a specific specialisation, it excels in many of the degrees it offers.

Oxford is split into four academic divisions: Humanities, Mathematical, Physical and Sciences (Life Sciences, Medical Sciences and Social Sciences).

In the Times Higher Education ranking of 2023, Oxford scored in the top 5 globally for social sciences, life sciences, business and economics, arts and humanities, law, and Engineering. Whereas, the QS World Ranking placed Oxford’s degrees in arts and humanities in first place globally. It also put engineering and technology, natural sciences, life sciences and medicine, and social sciences and management in the top 5.

According to Stoodnt, these are the top ten courses to study at Oxford University.

  1. Philosophy
  2. Modern Languages
  3. Geography
  4. English Language and Literature
  5. Mathematics
  6. Linguistics
  7. History
  8. Medicine
  9. Biomedical Science
  10. Natural Sciences

How Many Courses Can You Take In Oxford University?

A view over the north quad of All souls College, Oxford. Courtesy of getty

Unlike American universities, it is typical in the UK to only take one course at a time. You can of course go back and do more, or go on to do postgraduate degrees to further your learning.

However, Oxford University offers lots of joint courses so students can take 2 or 3 related subjects at a time. Here is what the university says about their joint courses:

“Oxford offers a wide range of joint courses which give students the chance to explore different subjects and examine the connections between them. This will often reveal insights not necessarily found by studying them individually. There tend to be fewer places on our joint courses but this is not always the case. A few subjects are only available as part of a joint course, for example, Philosophy or Economics.”

So, it is crucial to do your research into whether your preferred courses come as a pair or separately. There will be no time to study two very different courses at the same time and t is very unlikely that you will be allowed to study them part-time.

Is Oxford University Good For Medicine?

Although Oxford is known to be better than good across the board, you want to make sure that your degree is something that doesn’t fall below average. Therefore, if you are studying medicine then you will be pleased to know that Oxford University ranks very highly in medicine.

In fact, for the last nine years, the Times Higher Education has ranked Oxford’s Medical Sciences degree first place for clinical, pre-clinical and health sciences. Not only that, it is the only university outside of North America to be top-ranked by THE in any discipline. Now that’s a brag.

Here is a little bit about the actual course:

“The Medicine course at Oxford provides a thorough intellectual training with particular emphasis on the basic science research that underpins medicine. We have retained a distinct three-year pre-clinical stage that includes studying towards a BA Honours degree in Medical Sciences, followed by a three-year clinical stage.”

So, if you were thinking of studying medicine at Oxford University, then we hope this has sealed the deal for you. Although the university doesn’t have a specialisation, it seems that medicine would definitely be a contender if they were to choose one.

Have something to tell us about this article?
Let us know
Jasmyne Jeffery is a full-time Entertainment and News Writer on university-themed website Freshered and HITC, and joined the company having previously worked in a freelance role. She attended the University of South Wales where she was also a student blogger and graduated in 2022 with a first-class honours degree in English and Creative Writing. Now, she puts her creativity to use reviewing university bars, Love Island episodes and the latest apps any 18-25-year-old is using.