Debate & Public Speaking Academy

The Debate & Public Speaking Academy brings the power of speech to life within the context of Politics, International Relations, Law and Economics.

 

I learnt eloquence in speech, debating skills and confidence. A fantastic experience.

Jacques Bouvery, France

Crowd

How did Churchill, Clinton and Luther King make such mesmerising speeches?

Speech

Is the content of a speech more or less important than the delivery?

Talk

Want to get expert coaching on how to communicate in a persuasive manner?

Obama
Abraham Lincoln

The Importance of Public Speaking

Discover some of the greatest speeches of all time including those by Abraham Lincoln and Martin Luther and what you can learn from them.

Houses of Parliament

British Parliamentary Debating

Discover the finer points of this format of debate as well as the opportunity to practise yourself.

Speaking

Schools Mace Debating

Contrast this format with the previous one and verbally battle with your opponents.

Presentation

Effective Critical Thinking

Learn the ability to logically defend your intellectual positions under pressure.

Rebuttal

The Art of Rebuttal

Master how to effectively deconstruct opposition arguments.

United Nations

Discover Politics & International Relations

Learn about how democracy works and major bodies such as the UN, EU and NATO in relation to significant conflicts such as 9/11 and Israel/Palestine.

Law

Understand Economics & Law

Explore the role of global trade organisations (IMF and WTO), the recent financial crisis and the ethics of human rights legislation.

Debating

Balloon Debate

Pit your wits against your classmates as you take on the role of a famous historical figure attempting to justify themselves.

Medical challenge

The International Diplomacy Challenge

Want to feel the heat of discussing significant international issues at a global platform? In this Challenge, armed with your newly refined debating skills and international relations knowledge, thrive in a simulation UN Security Council.
  • Feel the adrenaline rush of trying to get a favourable resolution for your country against the clock
  • Present and debate critical worldwide issues with other diplomats who have conflicting interests
  • Develop solutions that gain consensus despite an unexpected crisis situation

GRADUATION CERTIFICATES

Graduation
Graduation evening
Oxford Scholastica Academy graduation ceremony

On completion of the course, you’ll be awarded your Oxford Scholastica Academy Graduation Certificate at our Graduation Ceremony.

This is held on the final afternoon at the impressive Saïd Business School which we hire for the evening.

Parents are warmly welcome to attend, and the ceremony is followed by dinner.

Debate summer school tutor

Meet our Tutor

Simranjit Kamal, LLB Hons

Simran is a seasoned debater who completed her Law studies at the University of Birmingham, where she developed her public speaking skills and took part in many legal style debates (“moots”).

  • Simran was a member of the Oxfordshire Youth Parliament for four years
  • She has undergone mini-pupillages with a number of legal firms
  • In her classes students can expect interactive learning, whether this is through group work or through the use of educational games
Tom Corby

Meet our Hero

Tom Corby BA Hons (Oxon)

You’ll have the opportunity to meet our Hero, Tom, who works as a Lawyer where he regularly engages in debate and public speaking.

  • Tom studied Modern History at New College, Oxford University, where he was a Scholar
  • Tom is now a barrister practising at 20 Essex Street. He specialises in commercial law which includes shipping, international sale of goods, conflicts of law and banking
  • Tom has acted for and against a variety of parties, including the Kingdom of Spain, a major Eastern European drinks brand and an England cricketer

Oxford Scholastica tutor on BBC News!

Jo Cruse, our Debate & Public Speaking tutor on last year’s summer school, was interviewed on BBC World News.

She was asked to give her views on emotion in politics, particularly in reference to Obama’s delivery of the news of the new executive actions that will lead to stricter gun controls in the US.

Watch Jo in action in the video.

MASTERCLASSES

In addition to your Debate & Public Speaking classes, you’ll get to experience our interactive and fun Masterclasses. These sessions will broaden your knowledge and skills.

stress busting
Oxford Scholastica is all about inspiring you to think about your future at an earlier stage.

You'll soon be faced with a job application process, and we think it's important for you to understand how such a process works. We'll let you know about:

  • The kinds of things employers are looking for
  • How to demonstrate and fulfil your potential in an application form or CV
  • The key stages of putting together a successful job application
debating at the oxford union
Do you want to sharpen your wits and be able to defend your point of view against bright opponents? Our Debating Masterclass is a fun, fast paced and memorable session where you learn to master the fine art of persuading your audience to believe your case. Led by expert debaters, this Masterclass will be followed by a Debating Competition in the famous surroundings of the Oxford Union - you'll be following in the footsteps of Winston Churchill, Mother Teresa and Michael Jackson!

  • Develop your ability to think quickly on your feet to combat opposition points
  • Work collaboratively in teams to create and articulate solutions to the big problems
  • Improve your self-confidence, speaking and listening skills in this interactive session
Our Masterclass last year was led by Jo Cruse, who has recently been featured on BBC News talking about the use of emotion in public speaking:

Volunteering Masterclass You'll be helping to make the world a better place as we take you to spend an afternoon helping out a local charity build a children's garden.

Amongst other things, you'll learn about sustainability and how to make a difference in a practical way.

  • Gain experience of volunteering
  • Develop a personal connection to the Oxford community
  • Leave a legacy of your time in Oxford
Many thanks to our friends at the great charity Student Hubs for facilitating the session for us.
changemakers Want to change the world?

In this Masterclass you will explore examples of individuals affecting change in a global context, and then learn the tools needed to develop and enact a plan for changing the world yourself.

  • Learn some of the ways the world has been changed historically by audacious individuals and groups
  • Work with classmates to create an executable plan to create real impact in response to real issues
  • Develop real world skills and keep in contact with friends by continuing your cohort’s mission after the summer school ends

Presentation
What do Richard Branson, Charles Darwin, Elvis Presley and Michael Jordan have in common?

We see them as highly successful people, yet they all had a hard time achieving this success. In this masterclass, you will learn how to grow from failures and setbacks and use as a driving force and become smarter, stronger and better. 

  • Debunk the myths of overnight success and luck  
  • Reflect on why we are all so scared of failing
  • Learn how to use setbacks to create future success

OUR TIMETABLE

Hover your mouse over the timetable to see more information.

First week

8am‑9am 9am‑10am 10am‑11am 11am‑1pm 1pm‑2pm 2pm‑3pm 3pm‑4pm 4pm‑5pm 5pm‑6pm 6pm‑7pm Evening
Sunday ArrivalOur team will be ready to help you settle in at the accommodation. If you are coming from abroad we can happily help to arrange a transfer from the airport Dinner Icebreaker eveningAn evening of fun introductory games designed to get you to know your new friends and our staff team
Monday Breakfast Welcome Talk Introductory ClassYou'll get your first chance to meet your Tutors who will talk you through the course outline and answer any of your questions LunchYou'll have the opportunity to visit one of Oxford's many tasty, healthy cafes/restaurants for your lunch each day Private StudyEach day you'll be given some reading or work by your tutor to complete. Just like an Oxford student, you'll be trusted to work independently or in groups in your rooms Oxford TourWe'll be taking you around the most famous landmarks in Oxford, from the colleges which inspired Harry Potter to the historic city buildings Dinner Quiz NightTonight we'll be testing your general knowledge in our Oxford Scholastica Academy Quiz - with prizes for the winning team
Tuesday Breakfast ClassesOur small-group courses are conducted by our hand-picked tutors Lunch Private Study Success MasterclassLearn the secrets of successful people, as we explore the tips and tricks to become successful, and discover how experiences of failure have driven successful people to stellar achievements. Dinner Ice Cream tastingWe'll be visiting George & Danver's (G&D's), Oxford's iconic ice cream shop to taste some of their ice cream - something many Oxford students do regularly!
Wednesday Breakfast Classes Lunch Private Study Volunteering MasterclassVolunteer your talents to help the local community. We'll be helping to rebuild a children's garden in the south of Oxford, learning about sustainability in action. Dinner Shakespeare PlayWe'll be visiting the Saïd Business School's outdoor amphitheatre to watch an evening Shakespeare play as the sun sets
Thursday Breakfast London Day TripWe'll be visiting London today, spending the morning touring the trendy street art of East London. After lunch in the famous Spitalfields Market, where you'll have a chance to shop in their vintage shopping arcade, we'll be taking in a Shakespeare play at the Globe Theatre, a reconstruction of Shakespeare's original theatre on the banks of the River Thames. We'll conclude with a trip on the London Eye, a giant ferris wheel, where you'll see all the important sights of London Dinner London Trip
Friday Breakfast Classes Lunch Private Study Debating MasterclassOur experts will give you a hands-on introduction to debating. You'll learn the technical side to debating, as well as how to formulate an argument and defend it against opponents. For many students this, and the subsequent competition, is the highlight of the summer school Dinner Debating CompetitionThe world-famous Oxford Union will be the scene for our debating competition. You'll be putting into practice what you've learnt in the afternoon, in the setting of the Union which has seen speakers from Winston Churchill to Albert Einstein, Ronald Reagan to Mother Teresa, Michael Jackson to Dizzee Rascal!
Saturday Breakfast Classes Lunch The Oxford Scholastica Challenge Afternoon!This is the moment you've been waiting for, as you'll get the chance to apply the knowledge you've learnt so far. From designing and marketing an App (Enterprise and Computer Science) to a Mock Clinic (Young Doctors) to a Model United Nations (Leadership and Debate) to filming a play (English) to designing a Magazine (Creative Writing) to a mock trial (Law), your teamwork skills will be tested to the max in our afternoon of fun Challenges Dinner Oxford OlympicsThis evening we'll be hosting our very own Oxford Scholastica Olympic Games. There will be group and individual activities back at the house where we'll challenge you to see which teams can go Faster, Higher, Stronger!

Second week

8am‑9am 9am‑10am 10am‑11am 11am‑1pm 1pm‑2pm 2pm‑3pm 3pm‑4pm 4pm‑5pm 5pm‑6pm 6pm‑7pm Evening
Sunday Breakfast Private Study Lunch Sports CompetitionsThis afternoon you'll have the option to take part in our sporting competitions, including our Football Tournament on an Olympic quality astroturf Ashmolean Museum visit/Bicester Village Shopping Trip/free timeYou've earned a well-deserved afternoon off! Go shopping with our trip to the Bicester Village designer outlet, or alternatively visit the cinema, or just relax with your friends - the choice is yours. We'll also be holding an optional tour of the Ashmolean, the world's first university museum Dinner Evensong/Film NightEach Sunday evening Christ Church Cathedral hold a Sung Evensong sung by the famous Cathedral choir. This event is optional. After evensong there will be a film night back at the accommodation
Monday Breakfast Classes Lunch Private Study Punting IntroductionA punt is a flat-bottomed, square-ended boat which is powered by submerging a long pole onto the bank of the river and pushing the boat along - or as some people put it, pushing a boat with a stick! It is most commonly seen in Oxford and Cambridge, and is a favourite summer activity of students at Oxford. We'll teach you how to punt along the beautiful banks of North Oxford, passing Lady Margaret Hall and the University Parks, and this is one of our students' favourite events each year Dinner Riverside picnicAfter our punting afternoon we'll spend the evening having a picnic by the banks of the river in the Oxford University Parks, arguably the most beautiful park in Oxford
Tuesday Breakfast Classes Lunch Private Study You're Hired! Masterclass: Applying for JobsMany of you will be thinking about your future life after school. In this interactive afternoon, we'll guide you through the jobs applications process Dinner Treasure HuntWe'll be exploring Oxford tonight, with our Treasure Hunt around the city - with prizes for the winning teams!
Wednesday Breakfast Windsor Castle and Eton College Day TripWe're off to visit Windsor Castle today - the oldest and largest occupied castle in the world and the Official Residence of Her Majesty The Queen. We'll then visit Eton College, the most famous school in the world, founded by King Henry VI in 1440 Dinner Frisbee EveningWe'll be relaxing after our trip by playing frisbee in the local park, who will win our Frisbee Championship this year?
Thursday Breakfast Classes Lunch Private Study Change Makers MasterclassYou're going to go on to do some amazing things in your life. Learn more about how you can make the world a better place in our Change Makers Masterclass, where you'll discover practical ways to realise your dreams. Dinner Oxford's Got TalentTonight you'll get to show off your skills in our talent show. Which team will win this year's award?
Friday Breakfast Classes Lunch Graduation and Prize GivingWe'll be celebrating your achievements at our Graduation and Prize Giving Ceremony and dinner at the famous Saïd Business School, where you'll also receive our Summer School Review which you can get your friends to sign (the equivalent to a Yearbook). Parents and friends are very welcome to attend! Dinner Ceilidh DanceDress up and see out our final evening in style ceilidh. A ceilidh is a traditional Scottish Dance, and local band Swinging Molly will be present to play the summer school out
Saturday Breakfast Departures
Please note this timetable may be subject to change. For example, you may have your Classes in the afternoon and your Private Study in the morning.

Secure Your Place on the Debate & Public Speaking Academy

This course is perfect for anyone interested in:

  • Studying subjects such as Politics, Law, International Relations or History
  • Developing their ability to put forward persuasive and coherent arguments
  • A career involving public speaking and debate such as the Law, Politics or Media

Entrance Requirements:

  • You must be aged between 15 and 18 at the start of the course
  • You must be motivated and keen to learn
  • You must speak and understand English well. Please contact us if you want to discuss your English level

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