School visits

Educational visits for students

We offer a range of opportunities for schools to engage with our outstanding collections of manuscripts, maps, rare books and archives. A visit to the Bodleian Libraries is a wonderful way to introduce students to working with primary sources, develop their visual and verbal literacy, and improve their research skills. 

Learning sessions based on the Bodleian's special collections materials, exhibitions and world-class research cover subjects including English, history, modern foreign languages and science. Sessions can be linked to the curriculum or designed to enrich learning beyond the classroom, introduce exciting new topics and allow students to experience an inspiring taste of University teaching. Our education programme is designed for students in KS3 to KS5 and we currently prioritise working with state secondary schools and colleges in Oxfordshire. 

Taught sessions include exhibition tours, ‘collections up close’ seminars, study days, lectures, and hands-on printing workshops. We also offer digital resources to support teaching, self-guided gallery visits and independent learning.

Our education programme is designed for students in KS3 to KS5. We also welcome groups visiting as part of Oxford University's widening access and participation initiatives for taster lectures, tours and workshops. 

As part of the University of Oxford Gardens, Libraries and Museums (GLAM), we can often arrange complementary sessions with other University collections for joint visits.

 

Opportunities for school-age students

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Group of children looking at the display

Exhibition visits

  Maximum group size: 30

The two exhibition galleries in the Weston Library showcase a selection of Bodleian treasures. Schools are welcome to book a visit to our regularly changing programme of exhibitions for a self-guided tour. We also offer taught learning sessions, activities, and guided tours for many exhibitions. 

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From an Ethiopic manuscript comprising the Four Gospels: David, MS Aeth. d. 19

Collections up close

  Maximum group size: 15

Smaller school groups with a particular subject interest can enjoy close encounters with rare books, archives or manuscripts. Get in touch to find out how we can plan a session for your students.

Get in touch

 

Historic letterpress printing workshop at the Bodleian Libraries

Printing workshops

  Maximum group size: 15

Hands-on workshops using our historic letterpress printing equipment allow students to experience the craft and labour involved in creating a printed book, and make a keepsake to print and take away.

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Students at the Bodleian Library

Study days

  Maximum group size: 100

In partnership with Oxford University's academic departments and museums, we host themed study days that give students an introduction to Oxford’s world-class collections and teaching through lectures and object-based workshops.

Recent study day topics have included Chaucer, Frankenstein, the English Civil War and parliamentary democracy in the UK.

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Bookshelves in a library

OxLibris: support with independent research

  Maximum group size: 15

OxLibris is a pilot project designed to support independent study for A-level coursework and the EPQ. With students often struggling to find high-quality research material, OxLibris offers advice on research skills and supervised access to Oxford University’s library resources to support Oxfordshire state school students in their progression towards university study.

Find out more about OxLibris.

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I thought the day was brilliantly organized, and we have all been left buzzing with enthusiasm both for the texts we are studying and the contextual material, which was so abundant on the day.

- Sixth form teacher-

 

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