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GCSE the first step towards University in the UK

Posted 06 November 2015
GCSE

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GCSEs are the foundation blocks upon which a British education is built. In the UK, students acquire their core learning through GCSE subjects, before moving on to A Level study, and then on to university.

GCSEs are the foundation blocks upon which a British education is built. In the UK, students acquire their core learning through GCSE subjects, before moving on to A Level study, and then on to university.

What is a GCSE?

General Certificate of Secondary Education (GCSE). It is an academically rigorous, internationally recognised qualification awarded in a specified subject. It is generally taken in a number of subjects by pupils in schools across England, Wales and Northern Ireland over two years, between the ages of 14 and 16.

GCSEs are different at Bellerbys

Bellerbys College has developed six different GCSE pathways that go above and beyond just the standard curriculum. Each pathway is designed to prepare students for difference academic and career paths, and each is teamed with a uniquely tailored enrichment programme that helps students to ‘learn around the subject’.

GCSE enrichment programmes

The enrichment programmes immerse the student in the subject and challenge their thinking. The breadth of the enrichment programmes stimulates lateral thinking for students and provides a number of opportunities for students to discover what really interests them. Enrichment activities across the GCSE pathways include:

Classes and workshops, such as:

● Film clubs
● Young Enterprise Scheme
● Art, design and photography workshops
● Creative writing
● Debating
● Model UN and Junior Parliament
● Young medics club

Guest speakers and lecturers, including:

● University professors, researchers and tutors
● Magistrates and solicitors
● Members of the medical professions 
● CEOs and business leaders
● Groups such as Amnesty International

Excursions and tours, such as visits to:

● Kew Gardens
● The Bank of England and London Stock Exchange
● The University of Cambridge and Cambridge Science Park
● Theatres, galleries and museums

GCSE Pathway options

Our GCSE Pathway programme offers younger students from 13 years upwards an early opportunity to nurture their passion for their chosen subjects. They learn with other international students from all over the world. They also study more than the curriculum in order to gain a broader understanding of a range of subjects.

Bellerbys College boarding school in Brighton welcomes students from the age of 13 for the three-year Pathway Discovery GCSE Programme and 14 for the two-year Academic Pathway GCSE Programme.

Pathway Discovery - Year 9 entry - three-year course

While some students are ready to make their pathway decision at an early stage, it’s also valuable for young students to step outside their comfort zone and try a number of subjects before making their decision. Year 9 offers a wide range of GCSE subjects to try before making a pathway selection in Year 10.

Academic Pathway - Year 10 entry - two-year course

Students have to choose one of the pathways on arrival into Year 10. Having missed the opportunity to trial modules in Year 9, regular reviews with tutors take place to make sure that the right pathway has been chosen by every student. Full support is provided if a change of pathways is necessary.

Our Six Pathways:

● Science and Engineering
● Business and Economics
● Creative Arts
● Humanities
● Global
● Young Oxbridge

After successful completion of the Pathway GCSE Programme, international students can continue by studying their A Levels with Bellerbys, and then on to successful university enrolment.

Students aged 15 and over can access our 1-Year GCSE programme, which is designed to provide a grounding in core subjects to enable progression to A Level.

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