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Gifted Student Programme

Course content

Course introduction

The Gifted Student Programme forms the core of the Honours Academy experience. All Honours Academy students will complete the Gifted Student Programme during Year 12. In addition they may select from the following to personalise their Honours Academy experience: • Debate Society • Advanced Mathematics • Any Career Academy In Year 13, Honours Academy students received a continued tailored support package as they make their applications and prepare for university interviews and admission tests. The application process is supported through one-to-one mentoring by experts in their field. There is also provision made for additional subject or skills workshops to equip students for entry examinations. Mock interview experiences complete this invaluable programme of preparation.

Who should follow the programme?

Students will be identified at the start of the academic year based on their GCSE achievements, or during the year by their subject teachers. It is likely that students who participate in the programme will:

  • Have a GCSE profile that is mainly 9s, 8s and some 7s.
  • Perform at AAA or above in assessment checks.
  • Be identified by subject teachers for outstanding achievement.

What activities can you expect to experience?

• The opportunity to attend diverse and inspiring presentations delivered by guest speakers, which include talks delivered by admission tutors from Oxford and Cambridge.

• One to one support and preparation for university interviews and admission tests such as the National Admissions Test for Law (LNAT).

• Attendance at regular seminars and extended reading to enhance skills such as critical thinking and public speaking.

• Comprehensive advice and guidance from external consultants on the application process for competitive courses such as Medicine, Dentistry, Veterinary Science and Law

Access to the HE+ Programme (Cambridge)

The HE+ Programme gives you the opportunity to participate in a prestigious programme organised through the University of Cambridge. The programme will encourage you to engage with new ideas and perspectives as you participate in a series of masterclasses across a range of core academic subjects. Participation in the programme will enable you to broaden and deepen your understanding of your chosen subject and develop key transferable skills such as independent learning and research skills. In the classes, you will meet students from other participating schools, giving you the opportunity to discuss different topics and explore your chosen subject more fully.

At the end of the programme, you will be able to visit the University of Cambridge, where you will be able to experience workshops, addressing such topics as university choices, making a competitive application and preparing for interview.  

Participation in the OxNET Programme (Oxford)

OxNET is a challenging programme run by the University of Oxford, covering the following topic areas:

• Philosophy and World Religions

• Languages

• English

• Science

• The City Through History

The programme will enable you to participate in academic seminars and lectures in your chosen subject, alongside a ‘Study Skills Day’ at Pembroke College, giving you an opportunity to gain a real insight and experience of what life might be like studying at the University of Oxford.

What about trips and visits?

Students that are part of the Honours Academy will have the opportunity to attend visits to top universities such as Oxford, Cambridge, Durham, Newcastle and Lancaster.

Nurturing rising talent

Our Elective Programme is designed to help you develop your gifts and interests as part of an enhanced level 3 programme. We will help you realise your potential by nurturing your talent and preparing you for study at the most prestigious universities or for progression to competitive higher-level apprenticeships. Your options range from our Honours Programme, which might include following a fourth A level, to specialist Futures Programmes that will support your career goals.

Level 2 entry requirements

If you’re not quite ready to start on a Level 3 Technical course (T Levels) or a Vocational Level 3 course (BTEC) but want to begin on the path to your chosen career, the Transition Programme could be for you.  

Transition Programmes are tailored to prepare students to move onto Technical or Vocational Level 3 study. They will give you the opportunity to improve your English and Maths, your work readiness skills and introduce you to the technical skills and concepts that you will need for future study and employment. 

As part of the Transition Programme you will study a BTEC Level 2 Award in your chosen subject area as well as the BTEC Level 2 Extended Award in Work Skills. You will also have the opportunity to resit GCSE English and/or Maths if you have not yet achieved a grade 4. 

Entry criteria for Transition Programmes is four grade 3s including grade 3s in English Language and Maths GCSE.

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