Get to a Top University

We only accept ambitious students into the Twynham Sixth Form. This of course means that many of our Sixth Formers are keen to secure a place at a top university, such as Oxford, Cambridge, one of the London universities or the highly specialist arts colleges.

Twynham School has developed seminars and specialist material on how to secure that coveted place. We have significant support from specialists to give you every chance of success. If you are ambitious, you will find the 'Get to a Top Uni' brochure invaluable. It is full of interesting information and no-nonsense advice.

To help those students considering applying to Oxford or Cambridge, medicine and the top universities or specialist colleges for art, music, dance and drama we have put together some detailed, very specific advice booklets, which follow:

Oxford and Cambridge

We actively encourage our high achieving students to apply to these two elite universities, which regularly top international league tables. Oxford and Cambridge have their own rules and expectations, which we recognise might seem daunting. Their ‘rules’ are detailed here.

We are passionate about widening access and opportunities for our students, and so offer bespoke support with their applications to Oxbridge. We work closely with outreach and admissions tutors from Downing College, Cambridge and Merton College, Oxford as well as offering our own seminars on personal statement writing, showing the requisite passion for your subject, and interview technique.

We have a dedicated Oxbridge tutor (himself an Oxford graduate), who is on hand to encourage students to consider applying to these institutions, and to help and advise with the application process, including proofreading and advising on personal statements and offering practice interviews.

If students have the necessary self-motivation and love for their subject, then we will support them with every step of their application to Oxbridge. You can watch a short video of the visit of some of our students to former Twynham student Amy, at St Hugh’s College, Oxford here.


Applying for medicine, veterinary science or dentistry comes with some additional challenges when compared to other degree choices. At Twynham, your chemistry and biology teachers will be able to offer you specific support with the additional tests (BMAT or UKCAT) that must be sat.

There are also mock interviews which are organised with support from outside organisations and you will carry out sessions with staff looking at a range of topics specific to these courses including the world of medical ethics and social determinants of health.

Students need to understand the expectations and additional challenges of Medicine well in advance if they are going to be well placed to make a credible application. Whilst the title of this leaflet is ‘Medicine’, the advice also applies to dentistry and veterinary medicine.

Art, Dance, Drama and Music

Applying for arts subjects at university and conservatoires comes with some additional challenges when compared to other degree choices. At Twynham, your performing arts teachers will be able to offer you specific and tailored support. This ranges from audition techniques, aiding the creation of your audition pieces and supporting your rehearsals, to ensuring they are at the highest quality.

Teachers are always willing to spend additional time with students to allow them to rehearse and gain valuable feedback. They will also support applications with personal references where necessary and carry out mock interviews and auditions.

The leaflets which follow have been written to enable students to have a clear understanding of the pathway that they might wish to follow and give information about how they may ensure that they are able to be taken as a serious applicant. The leaflets can be found as follows: Art, Dance, Drama, Music.

Students wishing to study in the USA

Students wishing to study in the USA might find this article helpful.

Student Fees

With student fees of up to £9000 per year from 2012, students and parents may well be carefully considering whether university is actually worth it. Myths, panic and confusion about the 2012 English student finance changes are widespread. All the coverage, during the summer, focused on Commons' spats and riots in the street – with little information about the practical impact on students' pockets.

What is worrying is that the increase in university fees from 2012 and the level of misunderstanding around the new university loan structure could result in young people missing out on a university education which is so important if they are going to be able to compete in a globalised economy.

Martin Lewis dispels many of the myths surrounding the new student loans on his moneysaving expert website, which is worth reading.

A key aspect is how you approach the student loan – and if you think of it as a ‘graduate’ tax rather than a ‘loan’ then the whole nature of the debt changes. This is explained extremely well in Martin Lewis’ website as above.

I hope that this information if useful and helps to dispel many of the myths surrounding the new student fees and how the ‘loan’ operates. Going to university is such a valuable thing to do and if our students are going to be able to compete in our globalised world, then a degree is vital in addition to the fun and the experience of mixing with new people as part of their journey.