In addition to providing careers advice to students throughout their time at WCGS, the School also has a well-developed programme of support for students planning to enter Higher Education. Our aim is to help students to find universities and courses that best match their talents, abilities and aspirations. The main body of support is in small group sessions and is tailored towards UK universities. Increasingly, however, the School is responding to interest in overseas university applications and so will be developing more tailored advice to address this.
In 2015, just over 71% of students who applied to study at university went to Russell Group universities. 18% went on to study at Oxford or Cambridge or to study Medicine or Dentistry.
Throughout the year we will host speakers from several UK universities as part of our Sixth Form Enrichment Programme or in stand alone evening events, which both students and parents are invited to attend. Various student-led clubs and societies will also host Higher Education preparation sessions throughout the year, often focussing on admissions testing prep or developing networks to help secure work-experience placements. In March of Year 12, the School hosts a UCAS Parent/Carers' Information Evening to introduce parent/carers' and students to the university applications process. At this point, students will embark on a comprehensive form time programme designed to support them in their choices of university and courses and to help them get a start on their Personal Statements. After Year 12 end of year exams in have taken place in June, students will attend a UCAS preparation day focussing on writing effective personal statements and registering with UCAS. They will then begin planning, researching and writing their Independent Research Projects, to be written up over summer and delivered to their peers in September of Year 13. During this time, many students will attend university Open Days, taster course and summer schools.
Support continues to be available throughout the Autumn Term of Year 13 from the Sixth Form pastoral team, form tutors, subject teachers and the Director of Co-curricular Learning. Oxbridge and Medicine and Dentistry preparation groups run alongside smaller, subject-based reading groups for those preparing for Oxbridge and Medicine/Dentistry/Veterinary Science applications in October. The School also provides support for students sitting admissions tests and, where applicable, with interview prep. As part of the UCAS process, each applicant will meet with their form tutors and with their assigned UCAS advisor (usually the Director of Sixth Form, Assistant Directors of Sixth Form or the Director of Co-curricular Learning) to finalise their UCAS References and to ensure the accuracy of their application forms. The School aims to have all applications sent to UCAS before Christmas of Year 13.
Once the application process is complete, our attention turns to supporting students in attaining their offer grades. By the end of May in Year 13 the vast majority of students will have received their offers and be in a position to settle on a Firm and Insurance choice. At this point, students will begin to think about applying for student loans and organising student accommodation. Many will also use their expertise to help students in Year 12 who are beginning the process themselves.
Higher Education support continues after exam results are published in August. UCAS advisors are available on and after A Level Results day to advise and assist students, contacting universities, assisting with Clearing or applications through UCAS Adjustment. Students who have taken a gap year can also rely on the School to continue to support their applications, through UCAS references, advice and support with admissions testing.
Please refer to our Student Guide to UCAS link below.
Student Guide to UCAS