Chelsea Independent College

About| Course| Entry Requirments| University Destination


About the College


As one of the leading Sixth Form Colleges in London, Chelsea Independent College specializes in providing a wide range of A-level, GCSE and Foundation courses.


We have an excellent academic record with the majority of our students progressing to Russell Group or similar leading universities.


Every day, our highly experienced teachers inspire our students in an academic and yet informal environment, focusing on both what you need to know, and how to put it into practice for exams. Students study in state-of-the-art facilities and have the opportunity to live in our purpose built boarding accommodation.


We also offer specialist preparation for students seeking entry to Oxbridge and Medical Programmes.





High School


Would you like to develop your academic knowledge and language skills, as well as study at one of the most prestigious sixth form colleges in London?


The Chelsea Independent College High School Term programme offers international students the opportunity to join our student community for one, two or three terms to experience the best of the British education system and culture.


At Chelsea Independent College, we provide:


  • A highly structured learning environment
  • One-to-one sessions with a personal tutor
  • Average class size: 7 students
  • The opportunity to study alongside British and other international students preparing to study at world-class universities
  • Two comprehensive reports per term
  • Support with validation of studies in home country
  • The opportunity to extend their programme and continue to study at Chelsea Independent College on the A-level or GCSE programme
  • Weekly examination practice


Course Options - September and January starts*


Under 16 years Students follow the GCSE programme which includes: Maths, English and Science subjects (compulsory) with the option to study humanities and creative subjects.


  • 16 years or over - Students follow the A-level pathway and can study:
  • September start (1, 2 or 3 terms): 4 subjects plus a module in Academic English
  • January start (1 or 2 terms): 3 subjects plus a module in Academic English   

*Please check with your domestic education system to ensure that credits will be awarded for studies completed overseas.


Extra-curricular Activities


Extra-curricular activities include: Sport, Art, Textiles, Debating, Critical Thinking, Career Talks, Cultural Evening Events, Theatre Visits, Concert Trips.




  • Students under the age of 16 board at Princess Beatrice House.
  • Students over the age of 16 board at Fulham Palace Studios.



General Certificate of Secondary Education – GCSE


GCSE – Your first step to a university education.

These important qualifications provide you with the opportunity to explore and experiment a range of subject areas and inform your decisions on which subjects to study at A-Level and university. Assessment is by coursework and formal examination.

You will study 6-8 subjects plus Physical Education, PSHE, Exam Practice and Personal Tutor Sessions depending on the length of your course and your personal study plan.


One-Year Fast Track Programme

We offer an intensive course of study that enables you to study for 5 or 6 GCSEs in just one year, half the normal length of study


Two-Year Programme

You will study compulsory core subjects alongside a number of optional subjects for a total of 7-10 GCSEs. An ideal choice for exploring subjects you have not previously studied. Students can also transfer into the second year of the GCSE programme.


In addition to Mathematics and English you will be able to choose from a wide range of subjects to ensure you are well prepared for the next stage of your academic career.



Subjects Range


Art and Design (AQA)


ICT (Edexcel)


Biology (Edexcel)


Italian (Edexcel)


Business Studies (Edexcel)


Mathematics (Edexcel)

Chemistry (Edexcel)


Photography (AQA)


English Language (AQA)


Physics (Edexcel)


English Language & Literature (AQA)

Religious Studies (OCR)

French (Edexcel)


Physical Education (AQA)

Geography (Edexcel)


Spanish (Edexcel)


German (Edexcel)


Textile Design (AQA)

Graphics (AQA)


Three-Dimensional Design (AQA)

History (OCR)














Advanced Level (A Level)



A-Level – Internationally recognized, academically unmatched

A-Levels are the world’s gold standard of university entrance qualifications and are accepted globally. The UK’s elite universities recognize that A-Levels provide an unmatched depth of subject knowledge and the highest grades will provide the option to apply to the very best institutions. Assessment is by coursework and formal examination with students studying 3 or 4 subjects. Where appropriate, our students will be given the opportunity to sit AS Levels in their first year of study, providing external assessment of student performance and enabling students to take advantage of universities’ early acceptance opportunities.


Which A-level Subjects Are Right For You?

Our College offers various choice of subjects ranging from Accounting to Textiles, so the best advice is to come and talk to us before you decide. Our personal tutors are highly experienced in putting together tailor-made programmes that are designed to capitalize on our students’ strengths and interests whilst maximizing their university options.


A Level Subjects Choices

Art & Design (including graphics)



Government & Politics

Business Studies



History of Art

Computer Science




English Language

Media Studies

English Literature


Fine Art




Further Mathematics



Religious Studies




A-level Retake Courses

If you haven’t achieved the A-level results you’d hoped for, don’t panic! You are not alone, and with the dedicated Retake Courses available at Chelsea Independent College, help is at hand.

We don’t believe that you should have to accept a place at a university just to get onto a degree course which requires lower grades, when you know you are capable of higher achievement. If you are confident you can improve your results, then one of our Retake Courses might be the right choice for you.

With our rigorous schedule of intensive revision, weekly exam practice, small classes, and dedicated university guidance, we’re experts at placing students on some of the most coveted degree courses in the UK.


Option 1: One-Year Retake Course - September to June

This intensive option offers students the opportunity to thoroughly revise their subjects. It is best suited for students who need to dramatically improve their grades and covers the AS and A2 syllabi in their entirety. Certain A-level subjects, for example Psychology, Sociology and Politics, lend themselves to a one-year intensive course starting from scratch.


Option 2: Short Retake Course - January to June

Students studying this option have the opportunity to gain work experience or travel before embarking on the Retake Course. Students can apply for university in the Autumn Term and will receive dedicated UCAS advice from the College, as well as receiving individual or class tuition in their chosen subjects.




NCUK International Foundation Year


International Foundation Year

The International Foundation Year has been developed specifically to prepare international students for degree entry. You will follow a subject-specific pathway and study 3 related academic subjects plus Academic English. On successful completion of the International Foundation Year our students are guaranteed at least two offers and one place on a respected UK university degree.



NCUK have been working with international students since 1987 and work in partnership with their 11 founder Universities to help international students achieve a place on a UK degree programme.  They deliver pathway programmes that allow you to gain the skills and qualifications needed to enter a UK University.  NCUK are a unique organisation because they were founded by 11 leading UK universities and it’s because of this relationship that they can guarantee you entry into nearly 3,000 degree programmes in the UK.  You can choose the programme and university that are right for you.


Why study the International Foundation Year at Chelsea Independent College?

We prepare our students for entry into high-ranking universities through the delivery of world-class teaching in small classes. At Chelsea we specialize in providing high quality education tailored to the needs of each individual student – we will ensure that you reach your full potential and exceed your expectations.  We guarantee our IFY students smaller classes, better teachers and more teaching hours per week.

  • Small class sizes (maximum 12 in a subject class, 12-15 in EAP)
  • The highest quality teaching – IFY students will be taught by experienced and highly qualified A-level and Foundation teachers More contact hours (21 hours)
  • A Personal Tutor for every student
  • The opportunity to mix socially with our British students.


You can choose one of the following pathways:

  1. Engineering Pathway
  2. Science Pathway

Below is a brief outline of the course details, and which modules and subjects students can expect to find on the course:


Engineering International Foundation Year


Compulsory modules:

Maths- You will develop your skills and abilities in these areas: Logical Thinking; Reasoning; Theoretical and Applied Mathematics; Modelling; Interpreting Results.


Chemistry - Topics covered will include: Atomic Structure and Atomic Mass; Chemical Bonding; Empirical and Molecular Formulae; Oxidation and Reduction; Transition Elements; Organic Chemistry; Physical Chemistry.


Physics- Topics covered will include: Introduction to Physics; Mechanics; Electricity; Vibrations and waves; Thermal Physics; Nuclear Physics and Fields.


Science International Foundation Year


Compulsory modules:

Maths- You will develop your skills and abilities in these areas: Logical Thinking; Reasoning; Theoretical and Applied Mathematics; Modelling; Interpreting Results.


Chemistry - Topics covered will include: Atomic Structure and Atomic Mass; Chemical Bonding; Empirical and Molecular Formulae; Oxidation and Reduction; Transition Elements; Organic Chemistry; Physical Chemistry.


English for Academic Purposes - This module will help you develop the skills required for an undergraduate course at a UK university. You will develop your academic reading, writing, listening and speaking skills together with the skills required to interpret academic texts and write academic assignments.


Optional modules

Physics - Topics covered will include: Introduction to Physics; Mechanics; Electricity; Vibrations and waves; Thermal Physics; Nuclear Physics; and Fields.


Biology - Topics covered will include: Structure and Function of Biological Molecules; Organs, Tissues, Cellular Organization and Cell Structure; Energy from food; Plant structure and Photosynthesis; Cell Membrane Structure and Transport; Interpretation of scientific data; Molecular Genetics: DNA Replication and Protein Synthesis; Cellular reproduction; Physiological systems; Homeostasis; and Interpretation of scientific data.


*All NCUK programmes also include a specialist English for Academic Purposes (EAP) module designed to give you the language ability and study skills that will give you a head start on your undergraduate degree in the UK.



Medical Preparation

Chelsea Independent College is very excited to announce that we have teamed up with The Medics Portal for medical students. This term potential medical students at Chelsea took part in a workshop learning the do’s and don’ts of applying to medical schools.  Chelsea Independent College is looking forward to working closely with the medic portal over the coming year and introducing the system to all prospective AS and A2 students interested in studying Medicine.


Chelsea Independent College has an enviable track record of success in gaining students places at leading Medical Schools and degrees allied to the medical profession. The Medical Portal provides students with up-to-date information and help whilst tackling their applications to medical schools in the UK.


Key areas covered include:




Application guides

Interview preparation & practice

Courses and questions

Personal statement advice







Oxbridge Preparation

Oxford and Cambridge offer places to only the very best applicants. Their decisions are based on academic results and predicted grades, performance at interview, admission test results, submitted written work, personal statement and teachers’ references. Having good grades, then, does not guarantee you a place, but it is a requirement.

Oxford makes conditional offers to students studying for A levels ranging between A*A*A and AAA, and Cambridge usually requires A*A*A. Cambridge requires Further Maths for most Science subjects. You will also be expected to have performed exceptionally well in your GCSEs.

Students wishing to apply to Oxbridge at Chelsea Independent College can expect the following:

Students will be put into specialist personal tutor groups, and will meet twice weekly with their personal tutor who will be an Oxbridge graduate, together with meeting every half term with the Head of Sixth Form, to deal with all aspects of their application. They will be encouraged to extend their studies beyond the needs of the curriculum, and to prepare additional pieces of work and presentations to support both their knowledge and their confidence in their chosen areas. Oxbridge entry is a highly competitive process, and students will be given an honest appraisal of their chances of success. Whilst all students who wish to apply will be considered, it is important to appreciate that the application process is fiercely competitive, and hence students who do not meet the minimum entry criteria for Oxford or Cambridge will be discouraged from undertaking this programme.


Oxbridge candidates will receive:

  • Specialist help from their personal tutor, their subject tutors and the Head of Sixth Form choosing the university, course, and college that best suits their ambitions and capabilities
  • Guidance from their subject tutors with suitable further reading, and careful monitoring to ensure that they are completing all additional work
  • Advice and guidance from academic staff on ‘super-curricular’ activities to ensure that their application is as competitive as possible
  • Specialist help with interview practice, with tutors who have both been through the Oxbridge interview process themselves, and who have sat on interview panels at Oxbridge interviews
  • Guidance with entrance tests (where necessary), and help from tutors who are specialist in their chosen areas
  • Extra help with personal statement writing, from graduates who have been through the Oxbridge process
  • References written by tutors experienced in the Oxbridge process


In addition, students can expect:

  • A visit from an Oxford and a Cambridge admissions tutor, to give specialist advice on their application
  • An invitation to attend a joint Oxford and Cambridge information day where they can meet academics and current undergraduates
  • Invitation to the open day at the college(s) of their choice
  • Visits to the college from other top universities (Imperial, UCL, LSE etc.) to help students make informed decisions on their ‘insurance’ choices.
  • In addition, the Head of Sixth Form and other academic staff are available throughout the year for one to one consultations on all aspects of their application


Pre-Sessional English

This programme is designed for international students looking to progress onto GCSE, A level or International Foundation Year programmes at the Astrum group of Colleges.

The course provides comprehensive preparation for those students who need to improve their English language level before commencing their academic programme. It is designed to provide you with intensive preparation in general and academic English. We will introduce you to the subject focused terminology and vocabulary that you will need in order to be successful on you long term academic course. We will also introduce the study skills and techniques that will help you make the transition to the UK education system. The small class sizes will ensure that the programme is tailored to you needs and that you receive individual attention from our highly qualified tutors.

In addition to the development of your linguistic skills in the classroom, we will also improve your skills through other activities and excursions to places of interest in London, including world leading universities, such as LSE and UCL, as well as a range of cultural attractions and museums.



Academic English Programme

A high level of English is required for entry to university in the UK. Beyond this, a good grasp of the English language enables you to understand more, write better and achieve top exam results. It also allows you to enjoy more social activities, make friends and understand UK culture.

As an international student attending Chelsea Independent College alongside British students, we aim to develop your language ability to near native levels so that you have the opportunity to flourish in both an academic and social context.

You must be able to demonstrate a level of English appropriate to your academic programme in order to commence your studies. Before you begin your chosen academic course, you will sit an English language assessment (unless you already possess a recognized English language qualification at the appropriate level). If you require further support and development you will be guided to a suitable full-time English programme for 1, 2 or 3 terms with us before you begin your academic course.



Academic Preparation Programmes


Pre-GCSE - If you require further preparation before your GCSEs we offer a Pre-GCSE programme of intensive academic English and study skills with taster sessions in Maths and Science.


Pre A-level - If you require further preparation before your A-levels our Pre A-level programme offers intensive academic English with taster sessions in your chosen or related subjects depending on demand.



Academic Summer Programmes

The Academic Summer Courses at Chelsea Independent College offer you the opportunity to explore your favorite subjects in more depth, improve your English and gain an insight into your chosen career field. You will experience what it is like to study at one of the UK’s leading independent colleges, where our expert teachers will assess your potential and advise you on your options for the future.

You will be taught in small groups in a relaxed and collaborative environment, meet leading professionals and take part in interactive workshops and seminars. At the same time you will have fun exploring this great and most international of cities and visit some of London’s incredible cultural and commercial attractions with other students from around the world.




Entry Requirements


High School Terms



Key Notes:

Minimum Age: 14- 15 Years

English Language Requirement:IELTS 5.0GCSE| For A-Levels pathway - 5.5

Academic:Satisfactory previous school records.



General Certificate of Secondary Education – GCSE


Key Notes:

Minimum Age: 14 + Years

English Language Requirement:IELTS 4.5 – 5.0 band

Academic:Satisfactory previous school records.



Advanced Level (A Level)


Key Notes:

Minimum Age: 15+ Years

English Language Requirement:IELTS 5.5 Band or other equivalent

Academic:Satisfactory completion of GCSE with at least 3 C’s or equivalent other qualification.



NCUK International Foundation Year


Key Notes:

Minimum Age: 17+ Years

English Language Requirement:IELTS 5.5 or other equivalent

Academic:GCSE / O Levels –At least 3 C’s or equivalent qualification with at least passing marks at 60%




Medical Preparation

Perspective students must meet the academic and other criteria for the medical school they intend to seek admission. They must have conditional offers from the Medical School. For more information contact us.        



Oxbridge Preparation

The perspective must have previous excellent academic record with the conditional offers from University of Oxford or University of Cambridge.



Pre-sessional English

IELTS 4.5 band in all components. Please contact our advisor for further information.     



Academic English Programme

IELTS 4.5 band in all components. Please contact our advisor for further information.     

Satisfactory secondary school report with English language equivalent to IELTS 4.0 – 5.0



Academic Summer Programmes

 Satisfactory secondary school report.





University Destination


2015 was another fantastic year of academic success for our students. Not only do our students achieve outstanding examination results, they translate this in to places on the most competitive degrees at the most selective universities.


NCUK Universities

NCUK and Chelsea Independent College will work together to provide a supported application service to the NCUK universities listed below. Students wishing to apply to non-NCUK universities will receive full support from their personal tutors and other College staff.


Owner Universities

University of Bradford

The University of Huddersfield

University of Leeds

Leeds Metropolitan University

The University of Liverpool

Liverpool John Moores University

University of Manchester

Manchester Metropolitan University

University of Salford

University of Sheffield

Sheffield Hallam University



Partner Universities

Aston University

University of Birmingham