Students in Physics class at Abbey College Cambridge

January 2021 Start Options

Abbey College Cambridge offers a range of high quality academic programmes, including GCSE, A Level and International Foundation Programme, for students looking to start their studies in January.

Pre-Sessional Programme

Abbey College Cambridge students in Academic English classOur Pre-Sessional Programme is designed to raise students’ ability in general and subject specific English to enable them to join our academic programmes.

Dependent on the level of language and academic abilities, our Pre-Sessional Programme can be taught for one, two or three terms. As well a strengthening English language skills, we will prepare students to learn in a typical British classroom environment. This includes skill development in areas such as pair work, project work, independent reading, discussion work and team building. Physical Education (PE) and Personal Health and Social Education (PHSE) also form part of our pre-sessional curriculum.



Abbey College Cambridge Physics classGeneral Certificates of Secondary Education (GCSE) represent the first stage on the path to study at a UK university. Many institutions will ask for at least 5 GCSE passes for entry.

In 2020 85% of GCSEs awarded to Abbey College Cambridge students achived grades 9-6 (A** – B).

January 2021 GCSE study options

Course Duration Subjects available Progress to
GCSE 18 Months

(Jan 2021 – July 2022)


  • Art & Design
  • Biology
  • Business Studies
  • Chemistry
  • Economics
  • English Language
  • Further Mathematics or History
  • Mathematics
  • Physics
 A Level

International Foundation Programme

Why study GCSEs?

Depending on the duration of studies, GCSE students will take between 6-8 subjects. GCSEs provide a great ‘grounding’, offering students a wide breadth of subjects. time to familiarise themselves with the UK education system and improve their English (English Language is a compulsory GCSE subject). GCSEs also provide a natural pathway to A Levels, and students who have taken then tend to perform better in higher level examination.

How are they taught?   

GCSE course content is broken up into units, each unit is taught in a linear structure, with an emphasis on understanding the connection between topics within the wider context of the subject.


GCSEs are assessed by an end of course exam. Some subjects will also by coursework or practical work.


A Level

Abbey College Cambridge Chemistry classAdvanced Level courses, commonly known as ‘A Levels’ are the most widely recognised qualification for entry to UK universities.

In 2020, 83% of A Levels awarded to Abbey College Cambridge students achieved grades A* – A.

January 2021 A Level study options

Course Duration Subjects available Progress to
A Level 18 Months

(Jan 2021 – July 2022)



  • Accounting
  • Art & Design
  • Biology
  • Business Studies
  • Chemistry
  • Economics
  • English Literature
  • Geography
  • Government & Politics
  • History
  • Mathematics & Further Mathematics
  • Physics
  • Psychology
Undergraduate course at university

Why study A Levels?

Most students will take 4or 3 A Level subjects over the duration of their studies. A Levels offer a good balance between subjects specialisation and choice, allowing students to focus on the subject that really interest them with the option of maintain breadth of subject choice. A Levels also offer progression the widest range of universities, and are the best options for students looking to join a top rated university.

 How are they taught?

Course content is divided into different sections, and students are encouraged to develop and understand the links between them. Learning is underpinned by the key concepts of the skills of the subject, with a strong focus on their practical real world application.


A Levels have a linear structure, which means that all exams take place at the end of the final year. Most A Level subjects are assessed by written examination unless the course has a large practical element (such as in Art of the sciences).


International Foundation Programme

Abbey College Cambridge Business Studies classOur International Foundation Programme (IFP) is an intensive year 13 academic programme that offers international students direct entry to a wide range of UK universities.

In 2020, Abbey College Cambridge students achieved an average overall score of 75% on our foundation programme.

January 2021 International Foundation Programme Study options

Course Duration Subjects available Progress to
International Foundation Programme 6 Months

(Jan 2021 – July 2021)



  • Business Management & Economics
  • Engineering
  • Humanities
  • Science
Undergraduate course at university

Why study International Foundation Programme?

Unlike many foundation programmes, our destinations are limited to a choice of one or two partner universities. This means students are free to progress to a wide range of UK universities, including many top-ranked Russell Group institutions.

How are they taught?

The programme offers a range of subject-related pathways, which give access to complementary subjects at university. Each pathway is made up of a number of modules, depending on which pathway you choose you might have a choice of modules, they may be all compulsory, or a mix of elective and compulsory modules.


Each module is assessed individually, with three assessment points through each term. Students will achieve an average score.


British Boarding School Experience

Abbey College Cambridge students relaxing in CambridgeSpend a term studying the British curriculum and improving your English whilst boarding in the heart of one of the UK’s most exciting cities.

Course benefits:

  • Improve your written and spoken English
  • Live and study in one of three beautiful, historic and vibrant British cities
  • Study the globally recognised and admired British curriculum
  • High quality accommodation and pastoral support included
  • Study and live with ambitious students from around the world

Whilst you study you will become a full member of our diverse student community, with access to our exciting extra-curricular programme of weekly clubs, sports and activities, evening lectures, and university preparation sessions.

Upon completion of your studies, you will receive a comprehensive academic report and completion certificate to take home. If you enjoy your time here, you can also choose to join the full GCSE, A Level or Foundation course and complete your university studies in the UK or at home.


Why choose Abbey College Cambridge?

Female students and teacher in Abbey College Cambridge Maths class

  • We are one of the UK’s top performing International Colleges
  • Our unique ‘Pre-Degree Diploma’ programme helps students prepare for competitive courses
  • We offer more than 60 weekly extra-curricular clubs and activities
  • Our students excel in national and international academic competitions
  • Our house system encourages competition, fosters pride and builds friendships

Since its foundation in 1994, Abbey College Cambridge has developed a reputation for academic excellence. As Cambridge’s leading international college, we are experts in teaching and supporting international students, and we do so in a community that is energised by the love of learning.

At Abbey College Cambridge students from around world feel at home, where they make friends from all over the world, share unforgettable experiences and go on to achieve amazing things together.

January start course fees

Course International Fee EU Fee
Pre-Sessional Programe (Jan 2021 – April 2021) £8,850 £7,020
18 Month GCSE(Jan 2021 – July 2021) £27,050 £20,280
I8 Month A Level (Jan 2021 – July 2021) £27,050 £20,280
6 Month International Foundation Programme(Jan 2021 – July 2021) £20,767* £16,293
British Boarding School Experience(Jan 2021 – April 2021) £13,390

Includes Boarding


Includes Boarding

*6 Month International Foundation Programme fee for students from countries in the following resgions is £13,833: Middle East, North Afica, Latin America and africa.

Join our January start Webinar

Thursday 26th November, 10am GMT.

Interested in starting you studies at Abbey College Cambridge this January? Then this webinar will be invaluable.

Our team will tell you about what you can expect in your first few weeks in the college, including welcome and induction, settling into college boarding and host family accomodation, covid health and safety around the college and in the city, and online and face to face learning.

Register here.


Our courses are for students between 14-18 years of age

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Join us in September 2021

Abbey College Cambridge Chemistry class

Abbey College Cambridge offers a range of high-quality A Level, GCSE, Foundation and

many more academic programs for students looking to start their studies in September.