Oxford is one of the world's great centres for philosophy. More than one hundred and fifty professional philosophers work in the University and its colleges, between them covering a vast range of subjects within philosophy. Many are international leaders in their fields. The Faculty of Philosophy is one of the largest departments of philosophy in the world, and is widely recognized to be amongst the best.
Its reputation draws many distinguished visiting philosophers; each year around fifty philosophers from around the world give lectures or seminars in Oxford. Almost every major philosopher speaks in Oxford at some time.
Each year, more than five hundred undergraduates are admitted to study philosophy in Oxford, always in combination with another subject. The Faculty also has more than a hundred graduate students, who are either taking a taught graduate degree or working for a doctorate.
Oxford is a collegiate university, and every registered student becomes a member of one of the colleges. In this way, he or she has access, not only to the very extensive libraries and facilities of the University, but also to the varied and more intimate life of a college. Colleges offer their students excellent libraries and facilities of their own.
Teaching at Oxford is by lectures and seminars, and by tutorials or supervisions. Courses of lectures and seminars are offered on a very large range of topics, for both undergraduates and graduates. Tutorials are a special feature of Oxford; undergraduates receive regular and frequent tutorials either individually or in pairs from members of the Faculty. All graduate students also receive frequent individual supervisions.
Oxford University dates from the 12th Century or before. The first colleges were founded in the 13th Century. The ancient buildings remain, mingled with magnificent architecture from subsequent centuries, to make Oxford one of the most inspiring and beautiful cities in the world. Within this setting, Oxford remains at the forefront of philosophy.