The English course at Oxford is exceptional, even if it is quite limiting for students. You can only choose one paper – the rest are compulsory, covering a particular time period, i.e. 1350-1550. However, while the set up encourages you to look at canonical texts, you are able to essentially write on any text or writer within the given time frame – so if you are willing to put in the effort to find interesting, oblique writers you are very much able to write on them. Only Shakespeare and Chaucer are compulsory as writers.
The teaching was generally very good, and the class sizes small. However, the work is hard and a lot is expected of you which can really take its toll.
Oxford is a great if small city, but it is very expensive to live in. Student life is vibrant but the circles can be quite small – however, I certainly managed to have fun.