jrodgers
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Hello everyone,

I've accepted an offer to read Classics at Oxford next fall, and I am greatly excited. In the midst of a gap year, I have found a new passion, computer programming, through online tutorials and DIY books. This does not mean that I am less enthused about the Classics; I think Computer Science and Classics together would be a great course. How does one go about petitioning to create a new course? Any advice or experience?

Thanks.

- JR
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username457532
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(Original post by jrodgers)
Hello everyone,

I've accepted an offer to read Classics at Oxford next fall, and I am greatly excited. In the midst of a gap year, I have found a new passion, computer programming, through online tutorials and DIY books. This does not mean that I am less enthused about the Classics; I think Computer Science and Classics together would be a great course. How does one go about petitioning to create a new course? Any advice or experience?

Thanks.

- JR
Why do you think they'd create a whole new course just for you? If you want to do a joint degree you need to apply to somewhere that allows you to do a joint degree in your chosen two subjects rather than expect a uni to jump to your every whim. Also, unis normally provide joint degrees where the two subjects complement each other in some way - not just any old random subjects.
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Dilzo999
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Classics and computing... A weird choice. In my uni they let me take "unusual" module options so they might allow you to do the same. As for creating a whole new course just for you, like above, dream on.
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KombatWombat
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You will definitely not be able to take computer science modules at oxford, nor will they make a new degree for you! Oxford only offer restricted choices of joint honours subjects and they rarely change. If you want to do computer science at oxford, you'd have to reapply.
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nexttime
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American?

The aim of almost all courses in the UK is to create an expert in a field capable of undertaking independent research. That aim is not fulfilled with classics and computing.

Even putting that aside, creating a new course, even just a composite of courses that already exist, is a huge logistical nightmare. It won't happen. (Bear in mind you haven't even been accepted for computer science in any way... would you even meet those course requirements?).

You can mention your interest to your tutors if you want but I think you need to acknowledge that studying both will not be possible and you'll have to do it either in your spare time or after graduation.
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cambio wechsel
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others are right in saying that there is precisely no way the university will allow you to design your own course as you might at some US colleges. But something from which you might take comfort is that the philosophy element of the Oxford classics course will allow you to choose - or choose from - several courses that would complement an interest in computer science, these including formal logic and the philosophy of cognitive science.
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gavinlowe
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As others have said: creating a new degree in Classics and Computer Science is just not going to happen.

The best I can suggest is that you look at the Computer Science & Philosophy degree
<http://www.cs.ox.ac.uk/ugadmissions/ugcourses/computer_science_and_philosophy. html>, which is the degree that comes closest to bridging your two interests. If that looks interesting to you, you can ask your college if they would consider letting you transfer. But being allowed to transfer is by no means certain: you would have to persuade tutors that you have the aptitude necessary for two new subjects; and the college might not even offer both subjects.

Gavin
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jrodgers
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(Original post by nexttime)
You can mention your interest to your tutors if you want but I think you need to acknowledge that studying both will not be possible and you'll have to do it either in your spare time or after graduation.
Would there be any way to pursue Computer Science in my spare time? Say by going to some Computer Science lectures or tutorials?
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KombatWombat
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(Original post by jrodgers)
Would there be any way to pursue Computer Science in my spare time? Say by going to some Computer Science lectures or tutorials?
I really doubt you'd convince your college to give you tutorials but you'd be welcome to go to any lectures you want and would have access to the Radcliffe Science Library.
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Doones
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You should have applied to the other place instead

The Tripos system does allow changing between subjects - although CompSci is very maths focussed (at both Oxford and Cambridge) so unless you have A-Level Maths, and ideally FM, you would struggle.
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nexttime
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(Original post by jrodgers)
Would there be any way to pursue Computer Science in my spare time?
Yes - the internet, books. Whatever you're doing now. That has the great advantage that you can choose what you learn. You could attend some lectures, though unless you're insanely high aptitude they'll be way above you. What maths qualifications do you have? Most computer scientists will have a-levels in maths and further maths i.e. 50% of their full time education in the last two years will have been maths, and even then the learning curve is steep. You can't attend tutorials.
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jrodgers
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I'm from Canada but have American qualifications, so for math a 5 on a Calculus BC AP, 800 on Math SAT II, and a 5 on the Physics B AP. That's somewhat equivalent to 3 A*s at A2 on Maths, Further Maths, and Physics.
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Doones
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(Original post by jrodgers)
I'm from Canada but have American qualifications, so for math a 5 on a Calculus BC AP, 800 on Math SAT II, and a 5 on the Physics B AP. That's somewhat equivalent to 3 A*s at A2 on Maths, Further Maths, and Physics.
So reject Oxford and reapply to Cambridge next year...

Actually the CompSci & Philosophy course at Oxford could be a good fit for you. I have no idea how flexible Oxford is if an offer holder wants to change course. I suspect you can't...

Posted from TSR Mobile
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BJack
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(Original post by jneill)
Actually the CompSci & Philosophy course at Oxford could be a good fit for you. I have no idea how flexible Oxford is if an offer holder wants to change course. I suspect you can't...
(Original post by jrodgers)
x
Yes, Comp Sci & Philosophy is probably the closest you'll get.

It's sometimes possible to change course before starting. More common is to switch after prelims (first year exams), which would probably mean doing first year again if you were to switch to a science course. In either case it would be up to your particular college / tutors to accept your transfer.
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