The Tanner Research Project
We are delighted to launch a comprehensive research project on the Tanner Scheme history and invite Hertford alumni to participate by sharing their experiences of admissions and their time at Hertford.
The Tanner Project will research and publish the history of Hertford College’s successful scheme, which ran from the 1960s to the 1980s, to admit students to Oxford who would not otherwise have applied to the university. Devised by the college’s physics tutor, Dr. Neil Tanner, the scheme brought to the college young men and later women (after the college went mixed in the 1970s) from diverse educational and social backgrounds who would not have had the chance of an Oxford education without Tanner’s farsightedness and imagination, and the college’s flexibility. The scheme paved the way for changes in the way Oxford, as a whole, selected undergraduates: what Hertford pioneered in the 1960s became the norm in the 1980s. The project will use archival records, the testimony of tutors involved in the scheme, and the memories of students who came to Hertford by this unconventional route and whose lives were changed by it. In this way the project will contribute to the ongoing debate about application to Oxford: we hope that a notably successful experiment in the past will offer ideas and inspiration for undergraduate admissions now and in the future.
The research will be conducted by Professor Lawrence Goldman, Director of the Institute of Historical Research at the School of Advanced Study in the University of London, and a Senior Research Fellow at St Peter’s College, Oxford. Please click here to read Professor Goldman’s introductory letter to the project.
As part of the project, we ask alumni who came to Hertford through the Tanner Scheme to fill in a questionnaire about their interview experience and their time at Hertford. Please return the completed form by email to firstname.lastname@example.org or mail to Development Office, Hertford College, Catte Street, Oxford, OX1 3BW. We hope to collect the majority of responses by October 2018.