Corpus Christi College Oxford

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Chemistry

 

Fleur

chemistry.student@ccc.ox.ac.uk 

Hi! I'm Fleur and I'm coming towards the end of my first year of Chemistry at Corpus. I'm the Chemistry ambassador for this year and hopefully I can be a point of contact for any prospective students for any questions and queries you may have or advice that you may need!

Corpus is known for being small and friendly, and correctly so! Everyone is lovely here and since we have such a small community, you get to know people and make friends quickly. The JCR (Junior Common Room, what we call the Corpus undergrads as a whole (yes, it’s weird, don’t ask!) is friendly and you can always find someone to talk to if you need it.

Choosing a college can seem like an impossible task as they can all seem the same but yet so different at the same time, which can be a bit overwhelming. The best way to get a feel for the colleges is to go and visit them on Open Days (I will be in Corpus on the Open Days so feel free to come and say hi!). You'll really get a feel for the colleges in person, and I would suggest talking to as many current students as possible! If you can't make it, no worries, another great way to get to know the colleges is to check out the alternative prospectus written by the students.

Chemistry is known for being a demanding subject, and while it is true that we chemists have an intense workload, it is nothing to be scared about. In first year, there are two hours of lectures every morning on physical, organic and inorganic chemistry as well as maths for chemists. We also have two days of labs, along with the relevant prelabs and postlabs - this can seem very daunting at the start of the year, especially for those with less lab experience, but the practicals cover everything you need to know (including the basics) and there are demonstrators present to help with any problems you might have, so there’s nothing to worry about.

For Corpus students, there is one tutorial a week, on either physical, organic or inorganic chemistry, for which you will be set a problem sheet to complete. This should be the bulk of your weekly work, as this is where you do reading, make notes, and answer questions on the topic set. We also have one weekly maths class for which a problem sheet is set, and a physics class twice a term with its own problem sheet. This may seem like a lot but it really is manageable, and you quickly get into the swing of things. The advantage of having lots of contact time means that not only you have lots of access to professors, tutors and lab demonstrators that you can talk to if you need help, but you also have quite a structured week which makes the transition from school less harsh.

Outside of Chemistry, it’s important that you get involved in some extracurriculars as it’s nice to take a break from work sometimes. There are so many options available, from rowing and every other sport under the sun, to orchestras and language societies, to the more obscure, like Corpus’ very own Cheese Society, both at a college and university level. You will be able to find anything you can possibly think of at whatever difficulty level you want, and it’s a great way to make friends outside your college and subject friends. For a nice chat with snacks, go to the weekly JCR Welfare Tea, which is hosted by the Welfare Reps and can be a nice break from studying at the weekend. Apart from that, there’s still plenty of time to go out, whether that be for a walk round Christ Church meadows or out clubbing, so make sure you make the most out of the student social life, which you probably can’t get anywhere else!

For more information, feel free to sent me an email – I’ll be happy to answer any questions you have and give you any advice that you may need, and I’m happy to just have a chat if you’re stressed about anything! Otherwise, you could check out Chemistry department website, the Corpus Chemistry website, or the Corpus JCR website.

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