Full-Time Academic Courses

Padworth aims to provide a well-balanced and broad based curriculum with a strong academic core.  We provide a range of full-time academic courses for students aged 13-19 appropriate for their age and aptitude.  We will consider the applications of students aged 13+ into either our Pre-GCSE course or if sufficiently able, into the first year of the GCSE programme. Whilst the College embraces much of the National Curriculum, our independent status enables us to tailor the teaching and learning to the needs of the students and thereby significantly enrich the learning experience.

Our curriculum aims:

  • To contribute effectively to the intellectual, physical and personal development of our students, according to their age and ability range
  • To prepare students for the next stage of education, training or employment and to provide the skills needed for life-long learning
  • To provide continuity and progression
  • To provide equality of access and opportunity for all students
  • To meet the needs of those students for whom English is an additional language
  • To support students with an effective PSHE (Personal, Social, Health Education) programme
  • To prepare students for the world of work through effective Careers Advice

Assessment and Reporting

All students will be regularly assessed according to our internal scheme, which is outlined below.

Each half term, students will usually undertake three assessed pieces of work. Our aim is to use a wide range of assessment methods and make assessment an integral part of the learning process.  Tests are used but they are by no means the only form of assessment adopted.  Assessed presentations, oral and practical tasks, problem-solving tasks, structured essays and structured project assignments are all included in our programme, along with many other methods.

Each assessed task will be accompanied by a marking scheme that outlines how marks are awarded on the Padworth Scale.  This is a five point scale and the information about its use will be shared with students.

Students will receive interim Achievement grades at half term, representing an average of their assessment marks during that period.  They will also receive a half term Effort grade.  The Achievement and Effort grade criteria are made available to parents.

GCSE and A Level students are assessed in Mock Exams in the middle of the Spring Term.  These results are reported in percentage form in the End of Term Report to parents.

Further questions about the assessment and reporting process may be addressed to the Deputy Principal (deputy@padworth.com) at any time.

GCSE and IGCSE Courses

All students study the compulsory core subjects of English, Mathematics and Core Science with supporting courses and activities. Within this framework, students may choose up to five additional subjects from the following: Art & Design, Business and Communication Systems (BCS), Business Studies (1 yr) Information and Communications Technology (ICT), English Literature, Geography, History and Music.

Pre-A Level Courses

Pre-A level courses are designed to prepare international students for A level study and combine English language classes with Mathematics and a choice of GCSE subjects.  All students are assessed when they arrive and their programme and number of GCSE subjects which will reflect their level of English.

A/S & A Level Courses

The following subjects are currently on offer: Accountancy, Art (Fine Art, Graphic Design and Textiles), Biology, Business Studies, Chemistry, Economics, English Language & Literature, Geography, Government and Politics, Mathematics (Pure Mathematics, Mechanics and Statistics), Further Mathematics, Physics,  Psychology and Sociology.

Prospective students and parents may specifically request subjects that do not form part of our standard GCSE or A Level curriculum.  While it will not always be possible to meet such requests, some subjects can be offered as an optional extra.  Please ask for further details.

Business Foundation Course

A one year course for students aged 17+ who wish to study business related subjects at university.  This course is accepted by a number of partner universities who accept it as an alternative entry qualification to  A Levels.  The course content is tailored to the students’ needs and offers elements such as GCSE Mathematics, English Language support, IT and study skills in addition to Business, Law, Marketing and Finance.

International Students

Our Pre A Level courses are designed to help international students who need to improve their level of spoken and written English before starting an A Level or Business Foundation course.  The Pre A level course offers three options depending on age and level of English.  For full details of the programme options, please click here. Students are prepared for Cambridge English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) IELTS examinations and IGCSE in English as a Second Language (for non native speakers).  Subject to their level of English, International Students are accepted directly onto A Level and Business Foundation courses.

PSHE Education as a supporting course

PSHE education (Personal, Social, Health and Economic) is a planned, developmental programme of learning designed to help students to develop the knowledge, understanding and skills they need to manage their lives, now and in the future.  It deals with real life issues which affect young people, their families and their communities, and engages with the social and economic realities of their lives, experiences and attitudes.

At Padworth, the PSHE programme incorporates contributions from the College Nurse, outside speakers, teaching staff and the students themselves and is delivered during the weekly College assembly and in Tutor group time.  Each term, the programme covers a number of topics.

Extra Subjects

It may be possible to offer other subjects subject to demand. Additional fees may be charged if a subject is set up on this basis.

My first impression of the college was, ‘this is a place where I can excel and reach my full potential’; Both the teaching staff and students made it easy and comfortable to settle in quickly and so I steadily began the journey of what were the two most interesting years of my academic life so far.
Clare Fonderson, Former A level student