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Varndean College

Address: Surrenden Rd, Brighton BN1 6WQ, UK

Description Varndean College

  • Founded: in 1880
  • Location: Brighton, United Kingdom
  • Students age: 16-18 years
  • Total number of students: 1450 people
  • Type of study: mixed
  • Accommodation type: host family (half board)
  • Language of instruction: English.

Located in Brighton, Varndean College (Varndean College) is considered one of the best in the country Sixth Form College, that is, specializes in preparing high school students for admission to universities. In total today almost 1,500 people aged 16 to 18 years are studying here - both British subjects and foreigners (the last approximately 70 people are representatives of more than 15 nationalities).

Varndean College was founded in 1880 and originally worked as a male high school. The current campus with a spectacular view of the sea school took since 1932, around the same time the school became a gymnasium. In 1970, girls were able to study here, and since 1976 the college specializes in teaching the Sixth Form.

All students and guests of the college celebrate the incredibly warm, friendly and comfortable atmosphere inside the institution, not at all like in traditional strict English boarding schools: teachers and students address each other by name, the uniqueness and personal point of view of each Personality.

Speaking of famous college graduates, you can name the following names:

  • Dave Greenfield (musician);
  • Governor of North Borneo;
  • Natasha Kaplinski (journalist and TV presenter);
  • Lucy Griffiths (actress);
  • the head of the Intelligence of the British Ministry of Defense;
  • Numerous Olympic champions;
  • Frank Bridge (composer and conductor);
  • editor of the Sunday Times newspaper;
  • Bobby Barry (musician);
  • Paul Scofield (actor);
  • the general manager of the famous British chain of stores Woolworths, etc.

Varndean College has a balanced and effective training program, which includes a huge number of possible academic subjects: for example, in the A-level course, the students have more than 40 options, the special BTEC program - more than 25. For foreigners, they offer supportive language courses, academic English : All this helps them to quickly adapt to the new academic Th environment and properly prepare for admission to the chosen institution. Much attention is paid to individual support of students: in college each student feels necessary, unique, valuable.

Each student is under the tutelage of the head of student progress and his personal mentors: meetings with them are held at least once a week. Mentors monitor the full adaptation of the child in school (academic and social), for his successes and achievements, in case of difficulties and problems, help with their decision, give recommendations on personal development and further education, help to choose a university.

A psychological counseling system is available for all schoolchildren - qualified, experienced psychologists are constantly on duty (4 times a week). In addition, with questions and difficulties the child can apply to the Mentoring Service: older students working there will help with any problem.

Social service at Varndean College helps to solve household and administrative issues (scholarships, grants and other means of financial assistance, accommodation and meals, travel and transfer). The students are also helped by the Professional Career Guidance and Career Center: here students are helped in choosing the future university, faculty, specialty and career; they tell about the peculiarities of different universities, the strictness of admission requirements, etc. If you plan to apply for a place in Cambridge, Oxford, a medical university after the graduation, the college organizes special preparatory programs, including helping to collect and send the necessary documents.

The college constantly cooperates with many local organizations and corporations - students can, if desired, undergo internships and receive valuable practical experience in a wide variety of fields: ambulance, education and teaching, engineering and manufacturing, media and media. .

Despite the fact that the cost of studying in the college is lower than in many other English private schools, the level of progress of graduates and students is not inferior to the famous educational citadels of England:

  • in 2015, students at the A-level received high scores from A * to C in 78% of cases, with the highest scores (A * -B) received by 52% of the students. Especially successfully passed examinations in the discipline "Visual Arts" (it was successfully passed by 90% of graduates);
  • According to the IB program in 2015, the average score was 35.5 - in the A-level program this can be considered equivalent to 3 exams awarded for a score A. In addition, 15 students received 40 points, and 4 students passed the final Exams for 44 points out of 45 possible!

Varndean College graduates are successfully enrolled in the best universities in the UK and the world:

  • University of Exeter;
  • University of Nottingham;
  • University of Manchester;
  • Oxford;
  • Cambridge;
  • University of Birmingham;
  • University of London (Queen Mary College);
  • University of Kent;
  • University of Sussex.

Programs, courses and tuition/boarding fees, prices in Varndean College

Program name
from 13 010 £ / year

Quick overview: The GCSE program is designed for 2 academic years and is offered to international students aged 14-16 who complete secondary education. Also, successful students can be offered a one-year accelerated course IGCSE (it is available for students whose academic performance in all subjects is not lower than B).

List of subjects to study:

  • English (level 1 and 2);
  • Mathematics (basic, advanced level);
  • Calculations and measurements;
  • Natural History;
  • Exact sciences;
  • Spanish;
  • Italian language;
  • Classical Latin.

The academic year is divided into 3 roughly equal terms:

  • Autumn: from September 1 to December 16 (vacation from October 24 to October 28);
  • Spring: January 3 - April 7 (holidays from February 13 to 17);
  • Summer: April 25 - July 14 (vacation from May 29 to June 2).
from 15 390 £ / year

Brief information: The course for high school students is 16-18 years old, completing the school education course and planning to enter the university. The program is designed for 2 years, it is considered difficult and academically in-depth: the A-level certificate is valued so highly that it entitles its holder to enter even the best universities in the world without additional entrance examinations and tests.

All subjects for the A-level pupil choose independently, focusing on personal academic interests and requirements of the future specialty. Usually this is 4-5 subjects for the first year of training (AS-level) and only 3-4 of those selected for the second year.

List of subjects to study:

  • Graphic design;
  • Anthropology;
  • Italian;
  • English literature;
  • Art;
  • Psychology;
  • The history of modern times;
  • Archeology;
  • 3D-design;
  • Classical civilizations (only A-level, second year);
  • German;
  • Philosophy;
  • Biology;
  • Social help;
  • Sociology;
  • Electronics (AS only);
  • Chemistry;
  • Theater and performing arts;
  • Photo art;
  • Health;
  • Business;
  • Latin language (AS only);
  • Mathematics;
  • Computer science;
  • Spanish;
  • Theory of mass communications;
  • Textile;
  • World progress;
  • Music technology;
  • Drama art;
  • Policy;
  • French;
  • Economics;
  • Physics;
  • Geography;
  • English;
  • Physical culture and sports;
  • Cinema Science;
  • Music art;
  • Basics of Right;
  • ICT (information and computer technologies).


from 13 010 £ / year

Quick overview: The BTEC program is a training course for gaining professional experience and a certificate, these are maximally practical courses that are highly valued by the admission committees of all universities. In college, students can be disaccustomed to the BTEC Extended Diploma program (equivalent to 3 A-level exams), BTEC Diploma (equivalent to two A-level exams), BTEC Subsidiary Diploma (counted for 1 A-level examination).

List of subjects available for study on the BTEC program:

  • Public services;
  • Theater and performing arts;
  • Creative digital media (OCR);
  • Art and design;
  • Development of computer games;
  • Tourism and travel;
  • Child game;
  • Creative digital media (OCR);
  • Environmental sustainability;
  • Drama art;
  • Biology;
  • Health and social assistance;
  • Education and development;
  • Sport;
  • Dance art;
  • Photo art;
  • Basics of Business;
  • Basics of Right.

The academic year is divided into 3 roughly equal terms:

  • Autumn: from September 1 to December 16 (vacation from October 24 to October 28);
  • Spring: January 3 - April 7 (holidays from February 13 to 17);
  • Summer: April 25 - July 14 (vacation from May 29 to June 2).


from 16 390 £ / year

Brief information: The IB program is available in college since 2008 - this is the only college in Brighton with this course, which was approved by the Ministry of Education in the UK.

About the educational program: The IB program is designed for 2 academic years and is intended for graduates, high school students from 16 to 18 years. The curriculum of each of them includes 6 self-selected disciplines - 3 are studied at the standard level of complexity, 3 lessons are conducted at increased complexity, in-depth. Additionally, all students attend the CAS (Creativity, Service, Activity) courses, the universal TOK program (general theory of knowledge) and write a detailed academic essay (the volume is from 4000 words, the topic is approved with the teacher).

For convenience of a choice and absence of duplication of programs all subjects are divided into thematic blocks - it is enough to choose on one priority discipline from each group:

  • Mathematics: mathematical research (basic level), mathematics (with the optional A-level option in mathematics);
  • Literature;
  • Art or an additional subject (visual art, chemistry, philosophy, German, Spanish, theater, film science and film making);
  • Foreign languages: French, Spanish, Spanish (basic course), German;
  • Natural sciences (biology, physics);
  • Personality and society (history, world politics, psychology).

The academic year is divided into 3 roughly equal terms:

  • Autumn: from September 1 to December 16 (vacation from October 24 to October 28);
  • Spring: January 3 - April 7 (holidays from February 13 to 17);
  • Summer: April 25 - July 14 (vacation from May 29 to June 2).
from 11 090 £ / year

Brief information: The English for academic studies program is a special intensive course for international students planning to enter long-term study programs at English schools, colleges and universities.

The duration of the course can be from 6 to 9 months: it depends on the requirements and capabilities of the student, his initial level of training and knowledge. The program includes the study of academic subjects (no more than 3, for an additional fee), intensive English lessons and preparation for IELTS testing.

Also this course has a version of the Study Abroad Program: it is a full-fledged educational and adaptation course that helps foreign students prepare for studying abroad. The duration of the Study Abroad Program is 3.6 or 9 months; The curriculum consists of an intensive English course and the study of 2-4 academic subjects.

The academic year is divided into 3 roughly equal terms:

  • Autumn: from September 1 to December 16 (vacation from October 24 to October 28);
  • Spring: January 3 - April 7 (holidays from February 13 to 17);
  • Summer: April 25 - July 14 (vacation from May 29 to June 2).
from 13 010 £ / year

Brief information: Effective one-year program for the preparation of international students (available for students 16-20 years) to enter English universities. The following subjects are studied:

  • English for Academic Purposes;
  • Meetings with a personal mentor (weekly);
  • Information and computer technologies;
  • General English;
  • English for business.

The duration of the program is up to 1 academic year (usually 20-35 weeks), you can start in January or September. Weekly workload is 19-21 hours.

The academic year is divided into 3 roughly equal terms:

  • Autumn: from September 1 to December 16 (vacation from October 24 to October 28);
  • Spring: January 3 - April 7 (holidays from February 13 to 17);
  • Summer: April 25 - July 14 (vacation from May 29 to June 2).

Accommodation, housing and food

Varndean College picks up host families to accommodate students: all of them live within transport accessibility from school (several minutes by bus), are constantly checked and monitored by college staff - many families have been cooperating for many years. Even before coming to school, the student can get acquainted with his future host family - the school organizes contacts via Skype, gives e-mail addresses.

Meals are served half board - students have breakfast and dinner with their families in their homes. In the school (directly on the territory) there is a cozy cafeteria where you can have lunch, drink tea or coffee, have a snack in between classes.

Subjects, specialties, faculties

Subjects list : 3d-design, ancient history, anthropology, archeology, art, Art and design, biology, business, business English, chemistry, Classical civilization, computation, computer games, computer science, Digital media, drama, ecology, economics, electronics, English, English literature, exact sciences, Film industry, French, geography, german language, global politics, Health & Fitness, history, Information Technology, Italian language, Latin language, law, mass communications, maths, modern languages, music, Music technology, Natural science, Performing arts, philosophy, physical Culture, Physical culture and sports sciences, physics, politics, psychology, social work, sociology, Spanish, textile, The art of dance, the photo, theater, tourism,  Modern history

Events Varndean College

Of the popular options for outdoor activities and sports, the following can be noted:

  • Netball;
  • Taekwondo;
  • Table tennis;
  • Badminton;
  • Soccer;
  • Zumba;
  • Basketball;
  • Rugby.

There is a huge number of clubs, sections and circles of interest - each student will be able to find an option for himself:

  • Music ensemble;
  • Politics;
  • Geography;
  • Training in Oxbridge;
  • Musical theory;
  • Digital illustration;
  • Literary creation;
  • Oratory;
  • Art and design;
  • History of visual art;
  • "The Voice of a Muslim";
  • Student Union;
  • Assistants to the director;
  • Drawing from a living nature;
  • Preparation for the BMAT tests;
  • Club on ecology;
  • Community on chemistry;
  • Club of young philosophers;
  • Club of lovers of mathematics;
  • Christian union;
  • Development of thinking;
  • "Young entrepreneurs";
  • Fighting for the Duke of Edinburgh Prize;
  • Journalism.

Equipment Varndean College

Today, the school campus is located just 10 minutes walk from the center of Brighton, one of the most famous and popular seaside resorts in Great Britain, located on the south coast of England (East Sussex). Getting to the major international airports of Gatwick and Heathrow can be reached in 45 and 90 minutes respectively.

Often Brighton is referred to as "London by the Sea": the city infrastructure is perfectly arranged here, there are no opportunities for entertainment, active and educational leisure, there are a lot of interesting places and sights. According to CNN Travel, the Brighton beach took the honorable 4th place among the world ranking of city beaches! The total number of tourists reaches 8.5 million a year. The population of Brighton is quite young - more than 40% of residents are aged 20-44 years, there are a lot of students, young teachers and specialists. In the city there are always interesting events and entertainments: for example, the Arts Festival, which celebrated its 50th anniversary in 2016! The main city pier covers 67,000 light bulbs in the evenings, and the Royal Pavilion of George IV invariably arouses the admiration of every tourist.

The school campus is deservedly considered to be one of the most beautiful in the south of England: it is constantly being modernized, updated, expanded - so, more recently, 9 new classrooms, an additional library and a large sports hall were built.

In the Varndean College libraries, students can find not only a huge number of printed and electronic sources (including a variety of periodicals), but also the necessary office equipment (copiers, scanners, printers, PCs with Internet connection and a local network). There is a rich fund of teaching materials, manuals, literature for extracurricular reading, there are a variety of video lessons and DVD programs, special databases available online.

There are 7 large computer classes on the territory of the educational building with the latest PCs (computer and IT disciplines are taught here); Students are also available digital cameras (photo and video), special programs for editing and processing information.

Saturated and sports infrastructure: there are several large sports and gyms, various fields and playgrounds for active recreation and games (both open and covered), track and field tracks and fields.

Term dates, timetable and extra fees

The academic year is divided into 3 roughly equal terms:

  • Autumn: from September 1 to December 16 (vacation from October 24 to October 28);
  • Spring: January 3 - April 7 (Vacation from 13 to 17 February);
  • Summer: 25 April - 14 July (vacations from 29 May to 2 June).

Tuition fee depends on the chosen educational program. Variants of educational programs:

  • GCSE;
  • A-level;
  • IB;
  • Study Abroad Program.

Some services are paid additionally to tuition fee:

  • Registration fee;
  • English lessons for international students (EFL);
  • Teaching aids, books and materials;
  • Accommodation (host family, half board);
  • Custody (registration with the agency + guardian services);
  • Round trip airfares;
  • Transfer in both side;
  • Personal pocket expenses;
  • Visa fees and services, translation and certification of documents;
  • Consular fee (paid at the Embassy).

Extra fees:

  • Registration fee (for a programme/course) 120 GBP

Entry requirements, assessment and extra fees, how to apply, what is required to enrol, conditions, entry tests and exams

All applicants must submit the following documents to the admissions office:

  • School-filled application;
  • Request for host family residence (the school provides a uniform template);
  • Table of assessments for the previous 2 years from the previous school.

Please note that all documents must be translated into English and notarized. After examining the documents of the applicant, a single internal exam (mathematics and English) is waiting, as well as a telephone interview (you can go through Skype). In case of a positive response from the selection committee, you can start the visa process by paying an educational deposit.

A student is exempt from an internal English language exam if he can provide IELTS or TOEFL certificates with the required scores:

  • Academic English; Preparation for IELTS = IELTS from 4.5;
  • Study Abroad Program = IELTS from 4.5;
  • International Foundation = IELTS 4.0-5.0 and above;
  • A-level or GCSE = IELTS from 5.5 And above;
  • IB (International Baccalaureate) = IELTS from 6.0 and above.

Map, location

Insurance, flights, residence permits, citizenship and other services

Varndean College reviews

Recommendations on when to apply

Language courses, schools and children's language camps Primary and secondary education - private schools Preparation programmes for entering universities - higher education Higher education (after completing accredited programs A-level, IB, High School) - Bachelor, Master, MBA
- we recommend to apply 6-9 months before the start of the course (some camps and schools offer discounts for early booking or for lengthy study programs)
- there are some very popular and high demand children's camps, where the applications need to be submitted 1 year in advance (in particular Switzerland , Great Britain , USA , Canada , Austria)
- we recommend to apply one year before the start of the training program,
- some schools have a specific time frame (September-November - please specify an individual school)
- some schools require tests in several stages (UKISET, internal tests of the school: English, mathematics, logics, subjects, interview, some require a personal visit)
- we recommend to apply one year before the start of the program,
- for Foundation and Pathway programs, IELTS and TOEFL certificates are usually required, respectively

- recommended submission one year before the start of the program,
- the deadline normally closes in January, for TOP HEIs and, as a rule, in March in other universities
- for a bachelor, a Foundation or Pathway preparatory program a completed A-level, IB, High School + IELTS / TOEFL are required
- for Masters you need a graduated higher education, in some cases you need a pre-Masters program
- MBA requires completed higher education, work experience preferably at least 2-3 years, etc.
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