Welcome to Oxford in France PPE Summer School. Set in a Seventeenth Century manoir among the orchards and meadows of the Laize valley in rural Normandy, this ten-day residential course provides a unique introduction to university-level Philosophy, Politics and Economics (PPE). It is open to just ten bright, ambitious students, aged between sixteen and nineteen. Small group seminars and individual tutorials are taught by outstanding tutors from the University of Oxford and Yale University. This rigorous ten-day academic programme is tailor-made for students applying to PPE at Oxford, though it is an excellent preparation for any degree that includes philosophy, politics or economics, either at Oxford or at Cambridge, or in the US. Students in recent years have won places at Yale, Harvard, Stanford and Berkeley. Oxford in France is entirely independent and has no formal affiliation with any university.
In the beautiful countryside of Calvados, the Normandy département famous for its apple brandy, we provide an intensive, rewarding experience that will help ten exceptional students develop the intellectual skills characteristic of a successful Oxbridge candidate. Students will benefit from the close attention of leading academics – from Oxford and Yale – but the success of the course relies in large measure on each member of the small group of curious and intelligent students being willing to challenge and learn from each other. Together you will create a stimulating environment which will foster a spirit of exploration. For this reason the course is highly selective, but if you can contribute to this community we would love to hear from you. The process for application and selection is outlined here.
The primary focus is academic. You will cover several topics within the fields of philosophy, politics and economics, including ethics, political theory, political economy, microeconomics, macroeconomics and game theory. The mathematics of economics and finance is taught in small groups, streamed according to experience and ability. We encourage students to join in French lessons each morning, and use their French on visits to the market towns of Bayeux and St. Pierre-sur-Dives. There is a debating workshop led by the former captain of the Eton College team that won both the English schools and the international debating championships. For more details of the curriculum, and a specimen timetable, click here.
Yet there are abundant opportunities to relax and enjoy the numerous indoor and outdoor activities on offer throughout the course, including swimming, table tennis, badminton, tennis, canoeing and cycling; trips to local markets, the D-Day beaches and the picturesque Suisse Normande; and movie and games nights. The food, including regional specialities like coquilles-St-Jacques, trou normand, camembert and tarte Normande with Isigny cream, is too good to describe. We think the cultural experiences, the food, fun and friendships will make this one of the most memorable experiences you will ever have. To learn more about this, click here.