First introduced in 2008, the Cambridge Pre-U is a popular alternative to A-level study that many schools around Britain are choosing for their sixth form students. The course differs from the modular A-level programme in that students take all of their examinations at the end of the two-year linear course. The advantages of this include students having a longer period of time in which to develop and refine their skills before being graded on their abilities, but students can also benefit from additional help and support, especially when it comes to the final stages of the course.
Staff at Oxford Tutorial College can help Pre-U candidates prepare for their all-important final examinations in a range of subjects, enabling them to make the most of their subject knowledge and of the critical skills that are central to the qualification. The linear structure of the Pre-U enables synoptic study throughout the course and students are encouraged to make important links between topic areas as part of their revision, taking an overview of subject areas explored throughout the course and building upon their existing skills.
|"Elisa achieved ABB. We are highly impressed by the level of care and attention paid during the course and have no doubt that the extra advice helped keep her on track towards her successful results."|
Revision is especially important for linear courses, as individual parts of the assessment cannot be retaken; staff at Oxford Tutorial College are able to offer specific subject advice and to help students hone their subject expertise because key concepts underpin the entirety of the course and important topic areas can be revisited with greater depth of understanding in the latter stages of the course. Staff will offer students guidance on how best to structure their revision and ways to maximise their potential and minimise the stress of the final examinations.
Confidence and familiarity with the form, rubric and expectations of the examinations are essential and students are given plenty of opportunity to hone and refine their examination technique during the course.
The course is based at Brasenose College, one of the constituent colleges of the University of Oxford, and at Oxford Tutorial College, where the excellent facilities include a library, computer room and student common room. The environment is an ideal one for thorough, intensive study, and students are invariably inspired by the tranquil surroundings. Both residential and non-residential places are available, accommodation being within the walls of Brasenose College, in the historic heart of Oxford.
Subjects Available at Pre-U:
|French||Literature in English|
Easter Course structure
The course takes place over six days and combines intensive subject teaching sessions, a timed assessment test, a final mock examination and seminars devoted to study skills, especially revision and examination technique.
Occasionally, in the case of less common subjects or options where a student is the only one enrolled for a particular specification, individual tutorials take place which allow the tutor to concentrate entirely on the student's unique needs. This may be the case, for example, with certain English Literature texts or History period options. In such instances, students follow a timetable divided between individual tutorials and directed study time consisting of ten hours teaching, with supervised preparation and revision timetabled at other times, in addition to the test and study skills schedules.
The marked mock script and a report, with comments on progress and performance during the week and advice on how to use the final weeks of exam preparation, are sent to each student at the conclusion of the course.
To apply for a place on the subject and stream of your choice, please fill in and submit the online registration form. We will then contact you again to confirm availability. You will be asked at this stage to remit the course fees to reserve your place on the course. You will be sent registration information and joining instructions by return of email.
Residential accommodation is at Brasenose College, one of the constituent colleges of the University of Oxford, located on Radcliffe Square, less than a 4 minute walk from Oxford Tutorial College. There has been an educational hall on this site since the thirteenth century, though Brasenose College can properly be said to date from 1509 when it was founded by Sir Richard Sutton, a lawyer, and William Smith, Bishop of Lincoln.
Each student has a single study bedroom within the college. The rooms are arranged on 'staircases' on one of the three 'quads', with shared bathroom facilities. Bedrooms are centrally heated and have their own desks and washbasins. Meals are taken in the dining hall: breakfast, lunch and dinner are provided. Where requested, arrangements are made for special dietary needs.
Careful supervision of the residential arrangements is provided by staff, living on-site, who ensure that students are comfortable in their accommodation and that domestic difficulties are speedily resolved. They encourage students to use their time sensibly; homework and preparation are set each evening and residential staff help create a positive environment conducive to study.
|“I achieved an A grade in Latin and Spanish, both of which I studied on the revision course. I am incredibly happy with these results. Thank you very much for helping me to achieve these grades.”|
Competence in study skills is crucial to success; lack of such competence is the most common, and most curable, cause of under-performance in public exams. The successful student needs to be able to organise study time, make good use of study materials, read texts with clear understanding, take effective summarised notes, revise and learn material efficiently, understand the focus of exam questions, write clearly-argued answers, respond well to stimulus material and organise exam time effectively. In addition to subject teaching, advice and encouragement are given to students in adopting effective study methods. Topics covered include:
Organisation and Use of Available Time
This includes the use of timetables and diaries, prioritising work, assessing work targets, developing study routines and creating a good study environment.
Reading and Note-taking Skills
This includes the importance of overview, reading strategies, the use of key words, concise note-taking, notes from memory and the use of diagrammatic notes.
This includes revision timetables, prioritising revision, memory training, the importance of review and methods of organising revision.
Essay Planning and Writing Technique
This includes the use of 'mind maps', brainstorming techniques, reading the question, the balance of argument and evidence, essay structure and timing.
This includes final preparation, question selection, timing and keeping a calm head in exams.