What are Sixth-form Colleges? (The Complete Guide)

Sixth-form and sixth-form colleges are both terms that are always used by teachers, parents, and exam-aged students in conversation. But what are they, what you will be learning, and why it is important, there are many questions that will be in your mind. Thus here we will help you to know more about what are sixth form colleges and help you to know each aspect of it.

Quick Takeaways

  •  Sixth-form colleges are the institutions in which you are taking up advanced-level education. This typical college is for those who are in years 12 and 13.
  • You will be studying your A-levels in this institution generally at the age of 16.
  • In addition to your A-level you may be also interested in studying BTECs and some sixth form also provides you with the option of them.
  • When you are studying A-levels from the same school where you take GCSEs, they are known as sixth forms but when you will be studying A-levels from different institutions that are specifically designed for them they are known as Sixth-form colleges.

However, you must read till the end so that you do not miss any crucial information related to sixth-form colleges.

What are Sixth-form Colleges? (The Complete Guide)

What are Sixth form Colleges?

Sixth form college is an institute in which students aged from 16 to 19 get admission for studying the advanced school levels qualification such as a levels business and Technology education council and the international baccalaureate diploma.

The college provides education to students who are in the years 12 and 13. Through this form of education, the student gains the qualification that is needed for them for the stages of their career. Sixth-form college is built in the way of British University in which the teaching is of a level as the students who have dropped out of school at the age of 16. Through sixth-form colleges, they have the chance to get an education. However, you can accept offers from more than a single sixth form, if you are ready to work harder.

What does a student get to learn at sixth-form college? 

The students who opt for the sixth form of college have three distinct types of qualifications such as.

  1. The first option is that students can take three or four A-level courses so that they are able to learn about the subject which is being taught during GCSEs. 
  2. There are some colleges that offer BTEC courses. These courses are the same as the education which is offered in universities.
  3. And the third option is not given to the student by many six-form colleges which is an international baccalaureate diploma program. For completing this program the student has to study 6 subjects and for each subject needs to give an exam. The student has to write a Research essay and presentation about society’s observance and knowledge.
What are Sixth-form Colleges? (The Complete Guide)

What is the difference between a sixth-form school and a sixth-form college?

In sixth-form college, the student has More freedom when compared to sixth-form schools. But the faculty make sure that you come to class and complete homework and finish a level with a good score. In 6 form colleges, the courses which are taken by the student are less well known when compared to school there are three subjects of a level course.

The education of the college is similar to the university teaching style as the classes are bigger and life in college is the same as at University. And the opportunity for extracurricular activities is less when compared to the sixth form schools as in this college there is no peer mentoring and leadership.

How to choose the right sixth-form college? 

The students should choose these sixth forms of college by following and noticing the following points so that they do need to miss the exam.

  • The student should check what is the range of subjects available in the college and the availability of each subject.
  • The student should make sure to check how many more subjects are available and should go to the college that has more subjects and should not waste the opportunity. 
  • The student should look at the courses available for example if the student has a passion for photography and the department of photography is not available so the student should not go to that college to search elsewhere.

How to approach the application to sixth-form college?

After finding a suitable college and you are happy with the courses available in the college then you should start the application process. You should always try to complete the form before the deadline. 

What information should a student include in the application? 

The application that you are sending to the sixth form of college should consist of your personal details such as name, address, personal statement, and the set of mock exams grades. To get good grades, you must not do some things during exam time so that you are not getting low grades. In a personal statement, the student has to write. About the personality, work ethic, and all the other good qualities that you have. The student can also write about the achievement of both Academy and extracurricular activities. The skill they have learned through the experience is of their life.

What are Sixth-form Colleges? (The Complete Guide)


Students who are 16 to 19 can apply for the sixth form of college. The college is similar to the university. Ask the student in the sixth form to study for 2 years. At present, there are many sixth-form colleges that are performing extremely well in the National examination league tables, as they provide the student with a broader range of courses at a low cost per student. 


Why is sixth form college called the sixth form? 

It is called the sixth form (a part of higher education) as the student who is below age, what we are calling years 12 and 13 there were grouped into five other sets of forms so a level student world is the sixth of this. 

The sixth form of college is equivalent to? 

This form of college is equivalent to a GCE A-level examination. 

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