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University of Oxford, Oxford-Princeton Biochemistry Exchange
Oxford, England (Exchange Program) (Outgoing Program)
Program Terms:
Program Terms: Fall Semester
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This program is currently not accepting applications.
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Budget Sheets Fall Semester
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Dept Offering Program: Study Abroad OIP Program Type: Study Abroad (semester)
Language of Instruction: English Language Prerequisite: No
Program Features: Academic Study Degree Level: 4 - Junior
Time Away: Fall Semester Housing options: Dormitory
Program Group: Study Abroad OIP Program Adviser: Francesca Schenker
Program Description:
Program Description:


Oxford-Princeton Exchange in Biochemistry

The deadline for this program is February 15, 2019.
As part of the Oxford-Princeton Partnership, selected juniors in the Molecular Biology Department and related departments have the opportunity to exchange places with an Oxford student for a semester and undertake a laboratory-based research project in an area of their choosing.

Princeton students become members of an Oxford college and have full privileges as members of the college and as visiting students at the University. This exchange is the most integrated academic experience at Oxford that a short-term visiting student can have, and Princeton is pleased to have the opportunity to offer it to its students.

If you are interested in learning more about the Exchange, contact Professor Fred Hughson in MOL and a study abroad adviser in the OIP.

The University

The University of Oxford, established in the 12th century, is composed of 38 independent, self-governing colleges and six Permanent Private Halls. Of the 38 colleges, 30 admit students for undergraduate degrees. Each of these colleges and halls selects its own students, houses them for at least the first year, provides their meals, common rooms, libraries, sports and social facilities, and assumes responsibility, primarily through the tutorial system, for their academic studies. The University provides the laboratories, the central lecture halls, the libraries and museums, prescribes courses and syllabi, and is in charge of University examinations and awarding degrees. The current undergraduate enrollment is around 11,000.

The Setting

Oxford is a lively city with university buildings from many architectural periods scattered amidst commercial enterprises. With a population of 160,000, the city provides an array of cinemas, theaters, and concert halls as well as a variety of good, inexpensive restaurants. There are excellent transportation links with all parts of the United Kingdom and frequent and reasonably priced bus service to London.



Oxford’s Biochemistry Department is one of the largest in Europe—with an annual intake of about 100 undergraduates reading for a four-year M.Bioch. degree. In addition, about 150 graduate students are in residence at any one time, and the total staff (academic and non-academic) numbers some 500 people. Please see the department website for more details about the Department and its research activities.

The fall semester of junior year is the best time for molecular biology concentrators to study abroad. Students wishing to study abroad must complete the following courses by the end of sophomore year:
  • MOL 214/215 (or ISC 231-234)
  • CHM 304/304B
  • 1 of the four MOL core courses (MOL 342, MOL 345, MOL 348, MOL 350).
Study abroad with the Oxford-Princeton Exchange in Biochemistry can, with permission, normally substitute for MOL 350. None of the other core courses (MOL 342, MOL 345, MOL 348) can be completed abroad. The intensive research semester at Oxford counts as a full semester of credit.

While on the exchange, students need to complete the equivalent of the fall-semester junior paper. For Princeton students on the exchange,  the junior paper is organized for by Oxford with the input of Princeton faculty. The tutorials that students take abroad mirror the tutorials that students take at Princeton for the junior paper.

You can choose projects from a range of projects offered by the Biochemistry supervisors as arranged by the Oxford coordinator. In order to find projects that interest you, look at the Department of Biochemistry research page to choose researchers or professors you would like to work with. You will need to list three choices in order of preference (with your first choice being the person you would most like to have supervise you). All of the projects are in well-supported laboratories. In addition to researchers in the lab, you will have the support of your designated College’s biochemistry tutor, who is a member of the teaching staff in the Department.


For Princeton approval, participants must have at least a 3.0/ B average for the fall and spring semesters prior to the semester of study abroad.

Grading & Credits:

For information regarding credits, grading, and other academic policies, read the Academic Policies on the Study Abroad website.

Academic Calendar

Fall semester only: Mid September - Mid December 


As this program is an exchange program, Princeton students become a member of the college from which an outgoing Oxford student comes. Information on each of these colleges is available in the Oxford Prospectus, available in the Office of International Programs and on the Oxford University website.

Student Life

Princeton students have the same access to libraries, computing facilities, and health services as do regularly enrolled students. More than 200 clubs and societies are active at Oxford. At “Freshers’ Fair” in October, students can learn about the array of clubs, sports, music and drama societies, student newspapers, and the student-run radio station. The Oxford Union, founded in 1823, is famous for its debates and for attracting renowned speakers from around the world.

Each college’s Junior Common Room, open to all undergraduates, provides a place to relax with magazines and newspapers; it also functions much like the Undergraduate Student Government in representing students’ opinions and organizing a range of social events. Some colleges have their own dramatic and music groups as well as other organizations to accommodate students’ particular interests.

Money Matters

Students who receive financial aid at Princeton continue to receive Princeton financial aid for the approved costs of study abroad programs during the academic year. For detailed information about financial aid, program fees, and billing for study abroad, please visit the Money Matters section of the Study Abroad website.

For estimated program costs, please click on the Budget Sheet at the top of this brochure.

Passport and Visa

Students are responsible for ensuring that their passports are valid for their entire stay in the United Kingdom. For further information on renewing or obtaining a U.S. passport, please consult the U.S. State Department passport website.

If you are studying in the UK for six months or less and do not plan to intern/work/volunteer while you are there, then you can enter as a student visitor. Non-visa nationals (which include U.S. citizens) do not need to apply for student visitor clearance before arriving in the U.K. They do, however, need to bring specific documents to show the entry clearance officer upon arrival. If you are not a U.S. citizen, you should check to see if you need to apply for student visitor clearance ahead of time. If you enter as a student visitor, you must leave at the end of six months.

If you are studying in the UK for more than six months or want to have the option to intern/work/ volunteer while you are there, then you need to get a Tier 4 Student Visa. This visa is complicated, and you will need to start the process six-eight weeks before you plan to leave for the UK. If applying from the U.S., you should first complete the visa application form online, make your payment, and then use the online booking system to schedule a convenient location and time to submit your biometric data. You will visit one of the 129 U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Centers, where they will scan your fingertips and take a digital photo. Once you have submitted your biometric data, you will send in your passport and documents by mail.

Application Process

Eligibility: Eligibility: Students must have strong academic records and experience in laboratory research. In addition, they must complete the following courses by the end of sophomore year: MOL 214/215 (or ISC 231-234), CHM 304/304B, and one of the four MOL core courses (MOL 342, MOL 345, MOL 348, MOL 350).
Completed applications must be submitted to the Office of International Programs and consist of the following:
  • Completed application form
  • Resume
  • Essay with a focus on student’s research interests
  • Two letters of recommendation from Princeton faculty who have taught you
  • Official Princeton transcript (paper version sent directly to OIP)
Princeton will forward the most competitive applications to Oxford. Students who are admitted have two weeks to accept the offer. A non-refundable deposit of $1,000 will be required to secure a place. This deposit will be applied to tuition.

In addition to a program application, students must also complete the Princeton Course approval form. This form is reviewed by the Committee on Examinations and Standing, which grants final approval to participate in the program. Students who meet the university eligibility requirements to study abroad and who have the support of their department are normally approved by the Committee.


Start planning your study abroad experience!

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Dates / Deadlines:
This program is not currently accepting applications. Please consult the sponsoring department's website for application open dates.
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This program is currently not accepting applications.