Welcome to our 2022 digital prospectus
 
Navigate the grey bars below to find out all about our college, our results, our extracurricular options and much more.
 
Scroll down further to the blue bars to check out our large selection of A level subjects and read what our students think about our courses and our college.
 
When you are ready to apply just head to the main pages of our website and fill in the online application form. 
 

Our Principal

 
 
SUGRA ALIBHAI
Principal 
 
“Our aim is for all our students to leave after two fantastic years as confident young people, able to stand on their own two feet, independent learners but also socially self-assured”
 
ABOUT ME
 
"I am a new principal at Woodhouse, having only joined in April 2021. I’ve been really struck by how special the College is. I love that there is a high level of intellectual rigour, a geekiness and joy for learning. It has a great ethos of preparing students for university and providing that safe steppingstone. But alongside that there is space for the students to grow and express themselves, to become young adults and have agency.
 
Agency is a massive part of my educational philosophy. There’s the freedom that academic success gives you in terms of doors being opened but true agency comes from being able to make decisions for yourself and live a happy and fulfilled life. I think what Woodhouse does incredibly well is give students the space to make those decisions. A space where they can grow and learn from mistakes. When they go on to university, they are really well prepared because they’ve had those opportunities to make decisions about how they learn, what they prioritise and what they are really passionate about.
 
I also like the commitment the college has to educating the whole person in the widest possible sense. Extracurricular enrichments have always been very important to me. I am so excited about Woodhouse being able to provide those opportunities again post pandemic. To provide an environment where young people can start living and having a bit of fun in their day-to-day existence.
 
I grew up in north west London and really value my education. My parents didn’t have the same opportunities that I had. My mum grew up in Uganda and she had to leave school at a young age to work. Her wages supported my aunts and uncle to be educated to a really high standard. I have therefore always been keenly aware of the lottery of life. Some people have the privilege of a great education and some people don’t. I see the power of education to change lives and having that perspective is why I got into teaching.
 
The underlying philosophies and values of Woodhouse College really resonate with me. Our mission statement talks about a transformational education experience for the community. That opportunity for young people here is not about to change. My predecessor John Rubinstein has left a wonderful legacy. There is a high level of pastoral care here, our staff know their students well and there is a strong sense of community. All of those things will stay."
 
 
Sugra joins us from Isaac Newton Academy, an Ofsted rated ‘outstanding’ all-through school for students aged 4-18 in Ilford. She had been there since its early days of inception in 2013. As well as teaching maths, she was Vice Principal and Head of Sixth Form. She has been teaching for 16 years since earning her master’s degree in Economics from the University of Edinburgh. 

Our College

 
 
Based in North Finchley and drawing students from over 180 surrounding schools, Woodhouse College is one of the leading places to study A levels in London. Our consistently high performance in exam results backs this up. The government recognises us as one of a small number of colleges with both Beacon status and Ofsted Outstanding status. Our current A*–B pass rate makes us the top sixth form college in London and the third highest achieving nationally.
 
Our combination of expert teaching staff and an ambitious, supportive approach has proved very successful in achieving excellent academic results. We believe that sixth form college should be a stepping stone between school and university, a place where you can start to become an independent learner, and where you are supported to become the person you want to be.
 
We provide a happy, trusting and caring environment where you can challenge yourself and explore a whole range of opportunities. Woodhouse is as much about personal growth as it is about exam success.
 
Woodhouse College boasts some of the best facilities in the area and promotes an extensive recreational and academic enrichment programme. At our heart is an impressive pastoral care system, and our tutorial, guidance and support systems will help you steer a safe course through your A levels and beyond.
 
Our students are ambitious: they embrace the challenge to be the best they can be, both inside and outside the classroom.

Our ethos and values

The College is committed to being the best it can be, to providing education of the highest quality, to teaching and learning that meets the needs of every individual. The College puts students and their needs first. We seek to empower our young people in their transition to adulthood, to take advantage of opportunities and to create their own. We hold each individual to be of the utmost significance in our community. In order to provide this level of opportunity to students, we strive to encourage improvement, reflection and ‘growth’ among students and our staff. Training, giving and receiving feedback, coaching and mentoring all have roles to play.
 
We try at all times to be open and self-critical, to avoid being defensive. We encourage feedback and the identification of areas of poor performance from students, parents, staff, governors and members of the public; and we seek to use these as an opportunity to engage in dialogue and to improve quality. We believe in the values of honesty, integrity and community; and that working hard can and should be its own reward.
 
The College is committed to equality and diversity. We are a secular college, based on liberal British values such as intellectual enquiry, scepticism, and respect for those with different beliefs. As such, the College values the rich diversity of its community. Regarding equality, we place a priority on awareness raising in relation to ethnicity, gender and sexual identity, because racism, misogyny and homophobia are pervasive in contemporary culture. We aim to equip our young people so that they can overcome barriers and challenge prejudice and discrimination when they encounter them.

Our results

 
A LEVEL RESULTS 2021
 
Overall pass rate - 99.6% 
A*- B  - 79%
 
50 students achieved 3 or more A*s
225 students achieved 3 or more A/A*s (around 30% of the year group)
 
SubjectEntryA*ABC DE% A*-B% A*-E
          
Accounting23 2 6 8 3 3 0 72.7 100
Art & design50 14 20 14 1 0 0 98 100
Biology231 38 67 66 45 9 3 74.7 99.6
Business23 2 11 5 2 1 0 85.7 100
Chemistry233 22 63 77 47 16 2 71.4 100
Classical civilisation23 4 7 10 2 0 0 91.3 100
Computer science27 4 2 8 7 4 1 51.9 96.3
Drama & theatre25 4 11 9 0 0 0 96 100
Economics146 21 38 46 21 134 73.4 100
English language34 8 9 12 5 0 0 85.3 100
English literature153 44 48 51 7 0 0 95.3 100
Extended project84 23 19 14 16 5 4 66.7 100
French37 5 15 7 5 2 1 77.1 100
Further mathematics47 24 14 3 4 0 0 89.1 97.8
Geography62 10 21 197 21 82 98.4
German10 2 5 3 0 0 0 100 100
History147 17 58 41 25 2 1 80.6 100
Law46 8 20 14 3 0 0 93.3 100
Mathematics371 108 76 71 54 35 0 70.1 98.9
Music8 2 1 1 4 0 0 50 100
Music technology9 1 2 4 1 1 0 77.8 100
Philosophy45 6 16 11 8 1 0 78.6 100
Physics136 23 32 42 16 9 7 74 98.5
Politics94 19 32 22 14 3 3 78.5 100
Psychology184 22 79 53 18 9 0 85.1 100
Religious studies21 4 7 7 2 0 1 85.7 100
Sociology88 22 40 14 7 1 0 90.5 100
Spanish35 10 11 10 2 1 0 91.2 100
 

Student destinations

Typically, 95% of our students got straight to university or a foundation course.
 
We provide extensive help with applications and consider ourselves UCAS specialists. We also run Oxbridge, medicine and law academies where students get mentoring, interview practice and support. We also have a dedicated careers department that not only helps students decide on the right university course for them, but also provides advice on career paths and apprenticeships.
 
In 2021, our students went on to study at 88 different university across England, Scotland and Wales, with some of them accepting scholarships abroad.
 
359 students went to Russell Group universities.
 
21 students went to Oxford or Cambridge.
 
27 students went on to study medicine courses.
 
 
TOP 10 DESTINATIONS 2021
 
Queen Mary University of London
King's College London, University of London
University of Nottingham
UCL (University College London)
University of Manchester
University of Leeds
University of Exeter
University of Warwick
University of Sussex
Royal Holloway, University of London
 
TOP 10 COURSES 2021
 
Law
Psychology
Economics
Medicine
Biomedical
Science
History
Pharmacy
Mathematics
Computer Science

Supporting you in your academic journey

Starting your A levels is an exciting time for you. We will help you settle quickly into college life and support you to become an independent learner who takes responsibility for your own learning. We have excellent systems in place to ensure you make as much academic progress as possible and achieve your potential. Here are some of the teams we have in place to ensure you are supported all the way through your studies:
 
PERSONAL TUTORS
 
Your personal tutor will be your first point of contact. They will have a clear overview of your academic and personal development and will support you on your way to success.
 
HEADS OF YEAR
 
Your head of year liaises with your personal tutor, teachers and other members of the student services team to help you overcome any barriers to learning that may impact on your progress.
 
STUDENT PROGRESS MANAGERS
 
Progress Managers help students with organisation, study skills and motivation to help you achieve your goals
 
ADDITIONAL LEARNING SUPPORT
 
Our ALS team can provide support for students who have learning difficulties, disabilities or medical conditions.We offer 1:1 or small group support and/or exam access arrangements where appropriate. We also have a range of assistive technology resources to support study skills and academic learning.
 
CAREERS SERVICE
 
Our careers adviser will provide you with 1–1 information, advice and guidance about applying to university or other destinations, as well as helping with work experience applications and gap year options.
 
ATTENDANCE OFFICERS
 
We take attendance seriously and the attendance team must be notified of all absences.
 
HEALTH AND WELFARE
 
We strongly believe in promoting health and welfare at Woodhouse. We have a safeguarding team to support students which makes referrals to our confidential counselling service and external agencies.

Woodhouse Plus

Woodhouse Plus is our extensive and diverse extracurricular programme, offering a wide range of additional courses you can take alongside your A levels. You can build your skills, build your career or build your qualifications.
 
WOODHOUSE PLUS + SKILLS
 
These courses are designed to develop skills you can use in a range of situations. Employers always seek people who can do things well, whether it is teamwork, solving problems, listening or organising.
 
Types of courses offered in recent years have included:
 
Hunting for Planets Use your computer skills to hunt for planets.
Debating / mock trials Learn how to debate, build strong arguments and spot how people try to persuade you.
Part-time work Register your part-time work and use this time to develop your employability skills.
Musical theatre Contribute to a musical production and learn performance, management and team skills.
Creative courses Creative writing, gardening and wellbeing, air dry clay, drawing academy, Online publication workshop.
Choir/Orchestra Be part of the woodhouse choir/orchestra
MS Office Skills Improve your MS Excel and word skills
Student Investors Students work in teams to invest a virtual amount of money in a share portfolio of FTSE companies
Maths Mentoring Share your expertise by mentoring GCSE students who are learning maths.
UK Linguistics Olympiad Be coached in all things linguistic so that you can enter this prestigious competition.
Event Organisation Work together to organise the Woodhouse Talent Show
 
WOODHOUSE PLUS + CAREERS
 
This is for you if you already know the direction you want to head in after Woodhouse. It includes courses designed to make your career choice more accessible to you. You will learn about the area you are interested in, the range of possible careers and how to access top degree courses.
 
Medicine Academy Learn how to get onto medicine courses and become a doctor.
Art / Architecture Academy Develop the portfolio you need to access art or architecture courses for a creative career.
Chemistry Academy Learn how scientists think by devising and carrying out experiments.
Maths Academy Develop your maths or physics problem solving at the highest levels so you can compete with the best.
Oxbridge Academy Build your intellect and capacity to apply successfully for the most demanding university courses.
Law Academy Develop your understanding of legal career possibilities and equip yourself to apply for them as well as law degrees.
History Academy Develop your skills as a critical historian by immersing yourself in some of the past’s deepest questions.
Career Ready (business) Follow a programme supported by employers which includes visits, mentoring, workshops and an internship.
Biology Olympiad Challenges and stimulates students with an interest in biology to expand and extend their talents.
 
WOODHOUSE PLUS + QUALIFICATIONS
 
These are additional courses that you can study alongside your A levels. Maybe you want to learn about something very individual so might consider the EPQ. Maybe you would like to take a high level online course, or challenge yourself by doing the Duke of Edinburgh Award.
 
EPQ (Extended Project Qualification) Design and research a project on more or less anything that is interesting and that takes you into ‘new territory’.
MOOC Take a Massive Open Online Course. There are thousands to choose from.
Duke of Edinburgh (Silver or Gold) Develop in a rounded way through volunteering, physical activity and the famous expedition.
A fourth A level If you are already taking four subjects, this counts for Woodhouse Plus and you would not be expected to do more… but you can.
Improve your grade at GCSE Maths Maths may not be your first love, but this is chance to get expert tuition and try to improve on your GCSE grade to strengthen future applications.

Oxbridge Academy

 
 
Our principal personally oversees a support system that includes a dedicated Oxbridge coordinator. We call it Oxbridge Academy.
 
Our programme starts a year before applications take place. We encourage students to start the process of engaging with their subject beyond the A level syllabus. This includes joining study groups to discuss texts and articles or solve problems that go beyond the demands of normal classwork. We organise and oversee trips, visiting speakers and summer schools as part of a comprehensive programme that mostly focuses on specific subject areas. We also benefit from lots of ex-students currently at Oxford and Cambridge coming back to give talks and offer advice.
 
We bring in admissions tutors from Oxford and Cambridge and invite students and parents to come and find out more about the whole process and ask questions.
 
Many subjects have special entry examinations in early November of Year 13, so we offer specialist subject support for these . We also assist those students who have to take a thinking skills test. Additional support is available for those taking the Cambridge maths STEP paper, which is taken after the A level exams.
 
The principal checks and gives feedback on all Oxbridge personal statements, as do our subject specialists.
 
We have close links with Oxford and Cambridge, and we use these to give support for students preparing for interview. Our links with two independent schools (Harrow and Highgate) are also very useful for interview practice. We also hold a special Oxbridge preparation school in October half term, as well as a number of other workshops and mock interviews run by our teachers and a range of external experts.
 
Our track record from offer to exam success and then acceptance is very high, but obviously not all students get an offer. Our application-to-offer conversion rate compares well nationally and we strive each year to forge further Oxbridge links for our students.
 
In 2021, 27 of our students received an Oxbridge offer and 21 qualified and took up their place.

Medicine Academy

The Woodhouse Medicine Academy is made up of students who demonstrate excellent potential to be successful in the medical schools application process. Academy meetings involve preparation, mentoring and support.
 
This total immersion in the culture of medicine is paying off and Woodhouse offers for medicine-related degrees are increasing year-on-year.
 
In 2021, 27 students in our Medicine Academy managed to secure multiple offers and progress to various medical schools.
 
INTERNAL PROGRAMMES
 
  • Discussion of medical ethics with case scenarios.
  • Studying the structure of the NHS, it’s history and limitations.
  • Discussion of topical and current issues related to the medicine and science field as well as book reviews.
  • Students are kept informed of opportunities for work experience and references are written to various institutions to support their applications.
  • Extensive support is given to the students with writing their personal statements.
  • Interview support.
  • Students get the opportunity to listen to external speakers both at Woodhouse and other institutions.
  • Workshops that enhance surgical/clinical skills are hosted at Woodhouse & other venues.
  • Preparation for medical schools’ entrance exams: BMAT & UKCAT.

EXTERNAL PROGRAMMES 
 
These schemes are very competitive but, despite this, our students have managed to secure places at the following:
 
  • University College London (UCL) target medicine programme, which also includes work experience.
  • King’s College K+ mentoring programme. Queen Mary mentoring programme – SAMDA. E-mentoring at Imperial College.
  • Cambridge University master classes in medicine.
  • King’s College Med-View summer course for medicine and dentistry, which includes placements at hospitals and GP practices.
  • The Nuffield Foundation summer placements at the National Institute for Medical Research.
  • A variety of medicine and medicine-related taster courses and summer schools at various universities, notably Imperial College, St. George’s and UCL.

Sports and Wellbeing

 
‘Healthy body, healthy mind’ is a mantra we take to heart here, and ensure that our students do too. Our dedicated Wellbeing and Activities Coordinator leads our Woodhouse Active programme, connecting students with a diverse range of sports and fitness activities such as badminton, martial arts, basketball, football, trampolining and fitness classes.
 
With a state-of-the-art floodlit 3G football pitch, our teams can be proud of their home turf. And our sprung-floored gymnasium with basketball court is fully equipped for badminton, trampolining, volleyball, parkour... you name it. Add to that our purpose-built dance studios and we’ve got fitness covered.

Overseas trips

 Students in Valencia in February 2020
  
It was once written that ‘an ounce of experience is worth a pound of science’. Whilst we wouldn’t wish to denigrate the hard work of our science students, we do still believe that trips often enhance and accelerate a student’s understanding of the world. That is why we actively encourage staff to organise visits and overseas trips to as many far-flung destinations as possible. Obviously, Covid has curtailed all trips for the past year but as Europe opens up again we plan to develop a brand new itinerary of destinations.
 
Recent international activities have included our annual trips to the Large Hadron Collider at CERN in Geneva for physics students, a combined geography and biology trip to Iceland, as well as a snowboarding trip to Italy. Classics students visited Rome, while our linguists went to France, Spain and Germany. 2019 also saw our very first trip to South Africa.

Applications FAQs

Who can apply?

The college is for 16-18 year olds. Almost all of our students are 16 when they start the academic year, and they come to us straight from Year 11. We only offer full-time A level courses. We consider ourselves to be a sixth form college for north London and its environs, and we do not prioritise applicants who live in particular boroughs. However, we prefer to offer places to those who live within a reasonable travelling distance.

What qualifications do I need to apply?

We specify particular GCSE grades in specific subjects; at least a 5 in English language and 5 in mathematics, and an average score across the best 8 GCSE subjects (including English language and mathematics) as follows:
 
3 A levels: 6.0
 
4 A levels: 7.5
 
Note that these are the minimum average GCSE scores required.

How many subjects do I pick?

3 or 4 A levels. Around 90% of our students are likely to study 3 A levels. The other 10% will study 4 A level courses. In order to be allowed to do this however, you have to achieve a higher threshold of grades than you do for the 3 A level programme.

How many places are available?

We enrol over 700 students from schools in and around north London.
 
We prioritise applicants from our partner schools, The Archer Academy and Friern Barnet School, but they still have to meet the same entry requirements as everyone else. We also prioritise looked-after children and care-leavers.
 
We know that not all students offered a place will actually come: some fail to get the grades, others choose to stay at their own school sixth form or go elsewhere. So we offer more places than we actually have.

What criteria are used for offering places?

The criteria include your academic potential, journey to college, school report, combination of subjects, as well as your contribution to your current school and participation in extra-curricular activity.
 
Please be aware that in recent years the college has been heavily oversubscribed in some subjects and so, we cannot guarantee to offer a place to all applicants who meet our minimum criteria.

When will I hear whether I have a conditional place or not?

We aim to let everyone know the outcome of their application before the end of April.

Can I change subjects after I have submitted my application?

If you would like to change subjects, please email admissions@woodhouse.ac.uk informing us which subjects you wish to change as soon as possible.

Can I change subjects after I have been offered a place?

We will do our best to accommodate you but cannot guarantee this since other subjects may be full. We would also need to consider your (predicted) grade profile. Likewise, if you wish to change courses following the publication of GCSE results we will do what we can to facilitate your request.

What happens if I do not reach the offer conditions?

You may lose your place, but in some cases students who narrowly miss the offer grades are accepted if we can fit them in. Sometimes we have to renegotiate the course(s).
 
Note that all students are expected to have passed GCSE English language and mathematics at grade 5 or above.

What happens if I decide not to take up my place?

You would need to email admissions@woodhouse.ac.uk at any time during the admissions and registration process.

If I get a waiting list place what are my chances?

This varies from year to year and often depends on which subjects have been requested. It is not possible to put any sort of figure on this. The more flexible you are about your subject choices, the more likely it is that we can fit you in. If you are keen to have a place, let us know after the GCSE results are published.

Are applications processed in date order?

No, applications received before the deadline are all treated equally. However, we cannot process your application until we have received the report from your school.

Can I apply after I receive my GCSE results in August?

Yes, by filling a ‘New Application’ form which can be downloaded from our website. You then need to scan and email the completed form and a copy of your statement of results to admissions@woodhouse.ac.uk. You must still have met our minimum entry criteria, and we would need to see a school reference or report. We consider students from our waiting list before new applications.

Can I see my school reference?

No, we have asked for a confidential school report so we will not let you see this. Should you have any concerns about your reference, you would need to discuss this with your school.

Do we operate any quotas when selecting students?

No, each applicant is judged on their merits and we operate no quotas of any sort.

If I change my mind about a course once I have started can I change?

This may be possible but any changes must be requested quickly and will depend on space availability and your grade profile. Your personal tutor and other staff will support you in this.

What happens if a subject is cancelled?

This happens very rarely. If we have to withdraw a subject we would do our utmost to provide you with a suitable alternative.

I currently live overseas, can I apply?

If you are returning to the UK by August 2022 and will be living with a parent who has the right to remain in the UK for the full duration of your course, then we can consider your application. If you are not studying GCSE/IGCSE, then you will need to get a ‘statement of compatibility’ from UK ENIC (formally known as UK NARIC - National Recognition Information Centre for the UK)..

I wish to come to the UK just to study, can I apply?

We do not hold Tier 4 sponsorship with the UK Border Agency and therefore are unable to consider students in this category.

Are there any fees?

The college is funded directly by the government and is free to UK citizens.
 
EU, EEA, and Swiss citizens will still be able to benefit from free education as long as they have confirmation of Settled Status or Pre-Settled Status granted by the Home Office.
 
We do require a text book deposit of £50. This allows us to issue students with free textbooks and to lend out library books and laptops. The deposit is returnable at the end of the course, on condition that all outstanding text books are returned.

General FAQs

How many hours of teaching will I get?

You will get 5 hours of class teaching per subject, per week.
 
15 hours a week if you take 3 A levels
20 hours a week if you take 4 A levels.

How much homework will there be?

You will be set about 5 hours of additional work for each subject, so 15 hours of homework per week.

How big are your classes?

On average our classes are about 20 students and in many subjects, classes are even smaller. Our largest ever is 24. Smaller, on average, than many other sixth forms.

Is it true that I can do any subject in any combination?

Yes. In most schools, your options are limited by the timetable. Two subjects might be taught at the same time, and so you can’t do both. But at Woodhouse, there are no clashes, we’ll make your subject choices fit into a timetable that is tailor made for you.

Do I need to be an independent learner?

Our students don’t all start out as independent learners, but we aim to equip them with the necessary skills and experiences so that by the time they leave us, they are ready and able to succeed at university.
 
We’ll help you grow and mature by encouraging you to push yourself, to try new things – to step up your game, be aspirational and forward thinking. We’ll teach you how to be independent.

How many students go on to Russell Group universities?

The Russell Group is a catch-all term for a group of universities with a shared focus on research and a reputation for academic achievement.
 
On average, around 55-60% of our students advance to these universities. Many of our students go to other equally high achieving universities and overall 95% of our students go to university in the uk and abroad in places like Canada and the USA.
 
Main Building
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Home to languages and classics, as well as our reception and administrative offices. Click on a subject below to find out more...
English Language English Literature French German Spanish Classical Civilisation Canteen 360° View
Hockman Building
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Home to most of our humanities subjects and indoor sports facilities.
History Psychology Sociology Politics Philosophy Law Religious Studies Sports Hall 360° View Dance Studios 360° View
The Finches
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Our music space and home of the Barnet Education Arts Trust (BEAT).
Music Music Technology
Millennium Building
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Home to all of our sciences as well as our large library and silent study zone.
Chemistry Biology Physics
Phillips Building
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Our dedicated maths environment, purpose built just five years ago with nine maths classrooms and a large breakout study area.
Mathematics Further Mathematics Computer Science
North Wing
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Home to our creative arts and social sciences, as well as our student services division.
Art & Design Geography Economics Business Learning Zone 360° View
The Hub
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The hub is the social centre of the college where students meet and hang out, eat lunch, work, and sometimes perform lunchtime concerts.
Drama & Theatre The Hub 360° View
3g Sports Pitch
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Our full-size, floodlit, 3G pitch was built in 2016 with help from the FA and the Football Foundation.
3g Sports Pitch 360° View
Main Building Hockman Building The Finches Millennium Building Phillips Building North Wing The Hub 3G Sports Pitch Main Building Hockman Building The Finches Millennium Building Phillips Building North Wing The Hub 3G Sports Pitch