Your Study Programme
New College helps you to plan a complete study programme that meets your needs and future study or career aspirations. We also seek to help you progress to a level higher than that of your prior attainment, regardless of which level you are studying at.
A full-time study programme (540 hours for 16-18 year olds and 450 for 18-19s) generally consists of the following:
- Your main courses, either academic or vocational, or a mix of the two (this is known as your core learning aim)
- Study for a grade 4/C grade in Maths and/or English GCSEs if not already achieved
- Additional activity which includes:
- Development sessions covering life skills, plus one-to-one guidance and support
- Enrichment courses and “Upskill” small qualifications
- Employability initiatives and work experience.
Impact of recent changes to A Levels and GCSEs
The Government has reformed A Levels to ensure that they provide more academic rigour and properly equip students to study at university/higher education level. From September 2017, all A Levels changed to a linear format i.e. assessment of a student’s knowledge and understanding of the whole course takes place at the end of two years.
AS Level qualifications are still available, but are stand-alone qualifications, designed to offer breadth of curriculum. The marks from them do not contribute to an A Level grade.
Some universities have asked that students continue to be examined externally at the end of their first year, as they believe that grades achieved at this stage provide a better indicator of ability than actual GCSE grades or predicted A Level grades. With this in mind, New College policy is that students studying linear A Levels will also be taught and entered for the relevant AS level exam at the end of the first year. We believe that this approach will provide valuable exam practice, reinforce learning and aid revision, as well as providing students with a realistic idea of performance at the end of their first year. Students should note that if a ‘U’ grade is achieved in any AS Level exam, they will not be allowed to progress to the second year of the A Level. Where an ‘E’ grade is achieved, students will need to discuss progression with their subject tutors.
GCSEs – please note that we offer GCSEs taught across one year, rather than two.
These are vital subjects for further studies and employment. The Government legally requires all students without a GCSE grade 4/C or above in English and Maths, to continue to study these subjects and you will be expected to study them as part of your learning programme. We expect high levels of attendance as a condition of your study here.
We offer a variety of English and Maths qualifications including Functional Skills Awards and GCSE, with different delivery styles. We assess what is best for each individual to place you on a suitable course.
Students who enter New College with lower than a Grade 4/C in GCSE Maths and retake this subject here do very well. The Times Educational Supplement has placed us in the Top Four College for GCSE Maths nationally and our OFSTED inspection in November 2017 identified that our English and Maths results are above those of similar colleges. We are very proud of our results in academic year 16/17, which were as follows:-
- GCSE English pass rate at A*-C/9-4 = 56.1%
- GCSE Maths pass rate at A*-C/9-4 = 42.6%