Here you can find resources for supporting pupils during the application process, as well as your own professional development.

Teaching resources

On our website Inspire Digital, we have provided a list of teaching resources from St John’s College as well as from across the University of Oxford more widely. Much of this material has been created for the St John’s Inspire Programme, but we have also included links to materials produced by other parts of the University to give you as wide an overview as possible as to what is available to you.

Click here to access these teaching resources.


Keep an eye on this page for further details, or subscribe to our mailing list for monthly updates.

UCAS Sessions

The College recently organised two sessions with teachers in our link regions of the London boroughs of Harrow and Ealing, on making UCAS personal statements and references as effective as possible.
The sessions, which were delivered by Causeway Education, are based on research by leading academics from multiple Russell Group universities, and aim to equip teachers with practical strategies to use in the classroom and with their colleagues, so that successive cohorts of pupils can benefit from their improved practice. 
All the teachers attending said they really benefited from an improved understanding of how to create high quality personal statements, the messages required in references and strategies for improving both personal statements and references with their colleagues.

  • ‘It changed my perspective on personal statements and references. It was great to include the research this was based on, so teachers know how you know it works.’
  • ‘Info on references and the structure of the personal statement – I’d never received any advice from my school on this!’
  • ‘I found this super clear and useful.’
  • ‘Really well delivered – very comprehensive and informative.’

Teachers' Residential Week, April 2018

The purpose of the Teachers’ Residential Programme is to allow teachers and education professionals working in UK state schools to gain an insight into life at the University of Oxford and to attend a series of presentations and workshops designed to provide helpful information on supporting prospective students throughout the application and admissions process. All teachers who attended had the opportunity to meet members of the Admissions team and, where possible, academics in the College working in the same subject area. A temporary University library card was issued to each attendee, providing reading access to the College library and the Bodleian Library, the University’s copyright library, allowing teachers to conduct their own research. You can see the programme for the residential week here.

2018-19 Teachers' Inspire Programme

The Programme for Teachers and Educational Professionals ran parallel to, yet separately from, the Year 12 Twilight Sessions throughout 2018-19. Sessions took place in schools and sixth form colleges in Ealing and Harrow and included 45-minute academic taster talks by scholars from Oxford, followed by 45 minutes of expert guidance on how to best help you, as teachers, to support your brightest pupils in making well-founded applications to highly-selective universities like Oxford.

The programme also included the opportunity to attend a residential Teachers’ Summer School at St John’s College, Oxford. The summer residential is designed specifically to provide an insight into life as a student at the College and University, and to provide teachers and pupils with the information, advice and guidance they need to best support their academically gifted pupils in making informed future choices. Furthermore, the summer residential also provides the opportunity for teachers to carry out their own work; to develop their own resources, to conduct research into provision for high achieving pupils and to use the University resources to supplement their own professional knowledge.