The UK Education System

The UK Education system is divided into four main parts: primary education, secondary education, further education, and higher education.

Primary education begins at age 5 and finishes at age 11, secondary then runs from 11 to 16 and further education is from 16 to 18.

In the independent school sector, students face three major external exams before entering University: Common Entrance in Year 8, GCSEs in Year 11, and A-levels in Year 13.

The UK education system is designed to help students specialize as they get older, before focusing on one or two subjects when they attend university.

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The UK: What's so special?

  • World Famous Institutions

    The UK is home to some of the most prestigious academic institutions in the world: Oxford, Cambridge, Eton, Wycombe Abbey, Harrow – the list goes on.

  • Academic Excellence

    UK universities consistently feature among the top ten in the QS university rankings. For secondary education, UK independent schools consistently appear at the top of results tables for IGCSE and Pre-U, which are the most popular secondary exams globally.

  • Intellectual Curiosity

    UK education is rooted in the ethos of developing students’ intellectual curiosity. Independent schools in the UK are often described as “mini universities” and students are given the freedom to question ideas much earlier than in other systems.

  • Planning your study abroad

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