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The Abbey Cambridge Student Journey

At Abbey College Cambridge every step of your academic journey is personally designed to help you secure a place at your first choice university.
PRE-ADMISSION

During your application we are looking to see your passion for learning and your ambition to succeed.

Once accepted to study with us, you will join our ‘Abbey Advantage’ pre-admission reading programme. It’s tailored to suit your academic choices and English ability, gives you a real insight, and helps you to prepare for studying here.

INDUCTION

Begins one week before the start of term. You will meet your personal tutor, subject teachers, our Principal and Vice Principals. Induction helps you to familiarise yourself within the college and Cambridge. We will register you with a local doctor, organise your police registration (if required), and help you to set up a UK bank account. There will also be lots of fun activities to help you meet new friends and settle into college life.

BASELINE TESTS

Happen during induction week. We test to establish your existing subject knowledge and to plan the steps on your academic and personal path towards your target university course.

ACADEMIC ENGLISH SUPPORT

You will have five taught hours of Academic English every week, and this will continue until you achieve an IELTS score of 7.5. This is so you can get up to speed on the terminology used in your subjects, and to make sure that English is no barrier to your academic success. If you want to continue your English studies after you have achieved a score of 7.5 you can do so at no additional cost.

PERSONAL TUTORS

Your personal tutor will provide support throughout your studies. You will meet them daily as part of your tutor group, and then regularly throughout the term for in-depth personal guidance sessions. Your personal tutor will also provide your parents with regular updates on your academic and personal progress.

STAGE TESTS

We test regularly, both formally and informally, to facilitate learning and to encourage you to commit facts to memory and help you develop an effective examination technique. Tests are designed to re-inforce your learning, and allow us to closely monitor your academic progress, provide feedback, and any academic or personal support that you need to stay on track.

Stage tests are constructed from past examination papers and marked according to exam board criteria. All papers are marked and returned to you with feedback within 48 hours of completion. Results are also posted to your parents. Prior to public examinations you will also sit a full set of mock examinations.

With frequent practice of past papers under full examination conditions, you will quickly lose any fear of examinations that you might have. The results will be improvements in your confidence and preparedness.

SUBJECT SPECIFIC FEEDBACK

After each test you sit you will receive subject specific feedback from your tutors. This feedback will incorporate your test performance, but also includes things like your homework and in-class performance. Our Heads of Department follow the progress of all students and hold regular meetings with tutors and our college leadership team to consider and support the needs of every individual student.

EXTRA-CURRICULAR ACTIVITIES

Our ABC Extra-curricular Programme is designed to offer a range of fun, challenging activities outside of your studies. Alongside the skills and amazing experiences that you gain through the programme, upon graduation we will present you with a formal extra-curricular award, which can be used to support and strengthen your university application.

Find out more about our extra-curricular activities.

PRE-DEGREE DIPLOMA

During the first year of your studies you will join our Pre-Degree Diploma Programme. Based in a small class with like-minded students, and led by a subject expert tutor. You will be developing high level knowledge and skills to make you stand out from other university applicants.

Throughout the Pre-Degree Diploma Programme our tutors will provide you with support and guidance on the university application process. This includes advice on preparing your personal statement and help with your choice of institution and course.

Find out more about our Pre-Degree Diploma Programme.

SPECIALIST UNIVERSITY COURSE PREPARATION

In addition to our Pre-Degree Diploma Programme, we also offer specialist preparation in areas such as admissions to Oxbridge. Medicine or law courses, and for students looking to continue their studies at universities outside of the United Kingdom.

Oxbridge applicants

We encourage our most able and dedicated students to apply for admission to either the University of Oxford or the University of Cambridge. Each year we have around 25 – 30 students apply to Oxbridge colleges.

We recognise the difficulty in making such an application, not least because many more A grade students make an Oxbridge application than there are places available. Therefore, in addition to our standard UCAS programme we invite Oxbridge applicants to participate in a programme of further discussion and preparation.

Our Oxbridge programme includes:

  • Selection of college: identification of the most appropriate college in terms of course choice, personality and chance of success.
  • Technical guidance: ensuring that applicants have an outstanding awareness of current issues in their chosen discipline that extends beyond the A Level curriculum.
  • Interview technique: advice and practice concerning effective ways to deal with the demands of the admissions interview at an Oxbridge college.
  • Extra tuition: Guidance and teaching dedicated to the extended Oxbridge application requirements.
  • Our programme includes preparation for Advanced Extension Award and Sixth Term Examination Papers in Mathematics, the Thinking Skills Assessment test and the other admissions tests the applicants will meet at their interviews.

Medicine and Dentistry applicants
Each year we have 10 – 15 students who wish to study medicine or dentistry. We offer a specialist programme to support these students in their applications. This includes advice on the additional admissions tests set by medical schools as well as preparation for medical and dental school interviews.

Law applicants
In most years we have a number of students who wish to read Law. We offer a specialist programme to support these students in their application. This includes advice on the additional admissions test set by faculties of law, as well as preparation for law interviews.

Applications to study at universities outside of the UK
We offer a programme of preparation and support for students who seek entry to overseas universities. In recent years we have helped students gain entry to top universities in the following countries:

  • Australia
  • Belgium
  • Canada
  • Czech Republic
  • Hong Kong
  • Ireland
  • Malaysia
  • Netherlands
  • Singapore
  • United States of America
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