I decided I wanted to read English at Oxford, one because I enjoyed it but two because I felt I had the more to offer outside of the curriculum than my other subjects. My teachers told me I ought to apply for Politics or History, as I'd achieved full marks in my exams but I knew my knowledge was too limited to the classroom, so stuck to my gut feeling and applied for English.
So, what are the positives of English at Oxford?
Oxford has the most amazing libraries containing every book you could ever want. Every student gets a Bod card (library card) giving them access to 12 million books!
The Oxford English Faculty is the largest English department in Britain.
The tutors are experts in the field, you often spot your tutors' texts on your reading lists.
You are following in the footsteps of some pretty amazing literary predecessors; C.S Lewis, Tolkien and Lewis Carroll to name just a few.
Students are encouraged to come up with original ideas, not just rely on existing opinions.
There are lectures on all the time, on niche topics with highly acclaimed academics.
The course is all about reading, so if that's what you love to do, you'll be immersed in it.
You get some choice over areas to study for coursework.
You cover literature from Beowulf to the Moderns.
In second year you can choose to take Course 1 spanning 1350-1830 or Course 2 650-1800.
What are the negatives?
It can at times feel like a race. There are so many books to read that it can become difficult to properly enjoy them all.
The work load is intense, with long reading lists, multiple essays and several tutorials each week.
There is so much reading that it can become difficult to fit in lectures which seems kind of crazy!
Check out the Oxford website for more info on English: https://www.ox.ac.uk/admissions/undergraduate/courses-listing/english-language-and-literature?wssl=1