A-Level Retakes

Oxford Tutorial College offers students a motivating environment in which to take a fresh look at their work and boost their performance. Over 50 per cent of our teaching staff are Oxbridge graduates, and are highly skilled in the tutorial methods that build greater understanding and stronger exam performance.


The A-Level syllabus is carefully reviewed with an emphasis on key topic areas, and guidance is given with reference to previous exam questions. A set of revision materials is developed to replace or supplement existing notes and materials. Study techniques such as reading, note-taking and revision skills are also developed. Our purposeful yet informal teaching style puts students at ease, and tutors work closely with each student to iron out difficulties.

In order to fulfil the requirements of the A-Level exam, a student must not only possess clear and detailed syllabus knowledge, but also have mastered exam techniques such as selection, planning and timing. It is a combination of knowledge and technique that enables a student to do well, and our retake courses address both, ensuring that you have all the tools you require.

Our courses offer various forms of teaching to give you maximum benefit:

Seminar groups: Seminar groups encourage active learning with discussion of syllabus topics under the tutor’s guidance. Small group sizes allow for a high degree of personal attention. Each student may have one-to-one tuition either within the group framework or as a separate weekly slot. In less popular subjects, a course of entirely one-to-one tuition takes place. Typical teaching patterns are (variously): six group hours; four group hours plus a one-hour individual tutorial; or sometimes three hours of individual tuition.

One-to-one tuition: One-to-one tuition in A-Level retakes can help deal with specific difficulties encountered by the individual. This gives the retake courses a unique focus for each student, enabling them to put effort into the areas that need most attention. Students focus on their own needs with the tutor’s undivided attention. To be effective, this method demands that the student is well organised and motivated.

Practicals: Those who need to improve their grade in practical assessments in the sciences are normally expected to take additional laboratory sessions. A thorough grounding is provided in the essential knowledge, methods and techniques required to satisfy this part of the exam.


When applying for A-Level retakes, you will also need to consider how much time you require to improve before retaking your exams.

A retake course over a full academic year allows sufficient time to make the necessary improvements in both subject knowledge and exam technique to achieve the best grade. For those looking for a significant grade improvement in two or more subjects, a full-year course is recommended.

Students can also retake A-Levels over one or two terms, with the terminal examinations in May/June: this approach is ideal for the student who has narrowly missed their target grade and simply needs to hone their syllabus knowledge, revision and examination technique. The College offers A-Level retakes in the full range of subjects from January to June, with examinations in May/June: students attend group and individual tutorials throughout the spring, alongside the Easter Revision Course. In some cases it is possible to begin a retake course in February or early March; taking a combination of retake and first-time subjects is also possible. Please contact us for more advice and information.


Students who sit A-Level retakes normally wish to apply to a British university for the following year. It is worth being aware of universities’ attitudes towards those students who retake A-Levels to make sure that an application is not wasted. Most universities tend not to discriminate against retakers, although for the more competitive degree courses the requirement may be slightly higher than normal. However, the fact that a student is prepared to retake exams suggests commitment; the additional preparation involved in a revision course also tends to emphasise sound study habits, putting students in a good position to begin work at degree level.

Finally, A-Level retakes can offer a good student the chance fully to reassess his or her goals and learn how to study more effectively. Every year, students leave our A-Level retake courses, confident that not only have they improved their performance, but they have also grown in self-understanding and motivation.

Students are able to take retakes in any of the A-Level Subjects we offer.


Anthropology looks into why we function the way we do from biological, evolutionary, historical and social perspectives. Alongside this, it teaches students fundamental skills they need in the contemporary world and skills in critical analysis that can be carried forward to higher education.

This specification is a four-unit course from AQA. It is assessed based on written examinations for each unit which contribute to 25% of the final A-level grade.


The last exams for students taking this will be in the June 2018 series. This means that it can only be studied as an intensive one year A-Level at Oxford Tutorial College.

Students of A-level Communication and Culture investigate their own cultural environment and then consider forms of communication and interpretation within and between cultures. The specification has a strong contemporary orientation and is based on creative and stimulating case study work which gives students many opportunities to relate their own life experiences to contemporary academic debates.

The syllabus followed in AQA. The final assessment is based on two examinations and the creation of portfolios of material for AS and A2.


For more information about our A-Level courses, retakes, or how to apply, you can contact us on +44(0)1865 793333 or email us at info@oxfordtutorialcollege.com.