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Although certain schools and colleges will have specific requirements, there is a minimum requirement that would be relevant to most. Students need a minimum of 5 GCSEs at levels 4-9 to get admission to A-Levels. These should include English Language and Maths.

To get into Sixth Form you need to achieve a specific level in a certain amount of GCSEs. The Sixth Form is a direction of study that comes after GCSEs. It is the next step in following an academic path of study.

A-Levels / Sixth form entry is the next step in the path to a University education. It would therefore depend on what direction your child wants to pursue. There are a few alternatives to Sixth Form Entry, depending on your child’s interests and location. Sixth-formers are generally prepared for university admission via

  • A-Levels,
  • Highers (in Scotland),
  • International Baccalaureate (a well-established alternative to A levels that offers a broader range of study), or
  • Pre U (a school- leaving qualification alternative to the current A-Level qualification).
  • Some  school sixth forms now also offer the EPQ (Extended Project Qualification)

The EPQ is an additional qualification to support university admission and shows research and study skills beyond the curriculum.

Sixth Form Entry can therefore mean different forms of further study. Some Sixth Forms will offer students between 16 and 18 a wider variety of subjects and qualifications.  Some even offer the more technical BTech qualification.

Therefore, depending on the chosen career path for your child, Sixth Form might be the only way to go, or not necessary at all.