English at Robinson is thriving: students come here because they are passionate about literature. This passion shows itself not only in their rigorous approach to their academic work – our students consistently perform extremely well in the University Tripos examinations – but also in the various extra-curricular activities in which they are engaged, from dramatic production (Robinson boasts the best college auditorium in the university, as well as the only outdoor theatre) to poetry recitals.
We are committed to nurturing the academic development of our students – which is a far broader, far more important thing than mere examination tutoring. In addition to the university-wide lectures in English that are open to everyone from all colleges, our students are taught several times per week in groups of up to four people (with much work conducted in pairs, and all dissertation and portfolio work one-to-one). In this close ‘supervision’ system it is possible for teachers to be highly responsive to the particular needs of the individual. Students are encouraged not only in what they learn, but in how to learn. Detailed feedback on weekly essays helps students to write (and think) with greater clarity; the opportunity for discussion allows them to develop their ideas and to take intellectual risks in an environment where they feel comfortable and supported.
The College has funds in place for the present postholder for a limited period of time and is seeking additional donations in order to support the post of Director of Studies and Fellow in English in the long-term.