Thanks for the tag, @artful_lounger
I don't know much about the Experimental Psychology degree at Oxford and haven't kept in touch with anyone who did it to ask them! But I did find this information on the Oxford website:A typical week
Terms 1-3: about six lectures, two or three tutorials or one practical class.
Terms 4-9: usually six lectures, one-two tutorials and one practical class. You will also undertake independent research and be given the opportunity to write a dissertation.
Terms 10-12 (MSci): almost exclusive focus on an extended research or translational project with complementary advanced and critical skills training.
So in the first year, it looks like you could potentially have 2-3 tutorials a week (if you're not having a practical class). This is similar to the music degree that I did (where 3 tutorials a week was standard. I did have one horrendous week where I had 5 tutorials in one week though
). For tutorials you'll have to prepare some kinda work (either an essay or a problem sheet). How many words that essay would be, I can't say, but you're probs looking at at least 2000 word-essays (Theology seemed to ask for 3,000 which would have been the end of me, tbh. Though I can't imagine Experimental Psychology essays being as long as that!).
So if you have 2-3 tutorials a week some weeks/terms, you're looking at a new essay or problem sheet roughly every 2 days or so. This means you'll have to work hard and fast. It's a very steep learning curve, and no half-decent tutor will expect much of you the first term or two
They're there to help you learn to adapt, and you will learn to write well and fast quite quickly. It's a good skill to take with you into the world of work afterwards!
That said, if you struggled with GCSE exam period (I'm not sure if you're alluding to any mental health issues, or 'just' more generalised stress?), it's worth carefully considering whether this is the right environment for you. Most people do swim rather than sink but Oxford terms really don't wait around for anyone. And once you fall behind it can become hard to catch up
Finally, remember that applying during a gap year is fine and always an option, if trying to pull everything together for this Oct feels too much