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English as an additional language

The English as an Additional Language (EAL) department aims to equip pupils for whom English is not their first language with the necessary skills and confidence in the use of English language to allow them to integrate successfully in the mainstream curriculum and achieve their full potential.

Prospective pupils who do not have English as their first language may apply for a place at the school in the usual manner. They sit an English as an Additional Language examination as part of the admissions process. They are also interviewed by the Head of EAL as part of the entrance procedure and / or on arrival. There is an induction programme for new EAL pupils prior to the start of the academic year organised by the Tutor for International Pupils and the EAL department.

Students in Upper College who do not have the prerequisite language qualifications for university entry are entered for the IELTS examination, usually in the Lower Sixth Form, and classes are held to prepare students for this exam. This examination is an internationally accepted university entrance qualification. It is designed to grade students’ level of English at a level of 1.0 – 9.0. The grade needed for university entry depends on the individual university but most require a minimum of 6.5 – 7.0. The Sixth Form IELTS syllabus focuses on developing the academic and linguistic skills required for the IELTS examination such as listening for detail, reading academic texts and writing academic essays with balance, justification of points made and successful structure. There is much exam practice offered ensuring that the pupils are adequately prepared for the examination.

In addition to IELTS preparation, the department offers EAL support to those Sixth Form students who require it and this takes the form of individual, shared and small group tailor made lessons. Lessons are also available for any student wishing to sit another EAL examination such as those offered by Cambridge ESOL.

We are dedicated to internationalism at Cheltenham College and want to do all that we can to ensure that each student achieves their full potential both academically and socially during their time at the college. It is our belief that the English language support offered at Cheltenham College will maximise the chance of this.

Miss Helen Davies, Head of English as an Additional Language