Sixth Form Curriculum

A Typical Study Programme

For most Sixth Form students at St Chris, their study programme will comprise:

  • Three A-level courses (The opportunity to consider four A-level subjects will be offered to some particularly well-qualified applicants, however it is not necessary for university entrance)
  • An additional A-level Extended Project Qualification (EPQ)
  • Tutorial programme
  • Study periods for independent learning
  • PSHE, careers and higher education programme
  • Options programme, every Thursday afternoon

A-level Courses

Which subjects to study is an important decision and at St Chris, you will be fully supported through this process in Year 11, or during the admissions journey if you are new to the School. 

St Chris offers a wide and comprehensive range of A-levels, which includes all the facilitating subjects listed by the Russell Group of top universities:

  • Art
  • Art & Design (3D Design)
  • Biology
  • Business
  • Chemistry
  • Computer Science
  • Drama & Theatre
  • English Literature
  • Film Studies
  • French
  • Further Mathematics
  • Geography
  • History
  • Mathematics
  • Music
  • Photography
  • Physical Education
  • Physics
  • Psychology
  • Spanish

For further information and detailed information about each subject, download the Sixth Form Curriculum Information booklet below.

Extended Project Qualification

The Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) is part of the extended curriculum in the Sixth Form and is designed to complement the A-level programme by providing greater breadth and to help our students develop the skills they will draw upon later in their lives, such as research and independent study skills.

The EPQ is an excellent preparation for the types of skills needed at degree level and can give extra weight and value to a university application.

The EPQ involves the production of a project which can be presented as an extended essay, an investigation, an artefact, or a performance, plus the accompanying research, analysis and evaluation; it receives a grade (A*-E) like any other subject and is awarded more UCAS points than an AS level.

As well as being an excellent demonstration of a student’s study skills, intellectual capacity and perseverance the EPQ can also be a lot of fun, as there are wide parameters to what you can investigate!

Recent EPQ topics at St Chris have included: political art; science versus God; the causes of the Henrician Reformation; the migrant crisis and the definition of ‘good’; the reciprocal interaction between architecture and humans; and whether avant garde art is dead.

Study Periods for Independent Learning

Study periods are used at a pupil’s discretion to independently study for their A-levels. It is likely that pupils will need to undertake a minimum of three to four study hours per subject, outside of lessons, per week to meet the requirements of their course.

Pupils can use the Sixth Form Centre’s quiet study rooms and the library during these periods.

“Using your study periods to get homework done earlier in the day is a lot more effective than leaving it until you are at home when you are tired and most likely want to relax.  It’s a much better way of getting work done on time and to a higher quality.” Robert, Year 12

PSHE

Personal, social, and health education (PSHE) is delivered to both Year 12 and Year 13 students. The curriculum is delivered by personal tutors through tutor group sessions, and through a programme of visiting speakers, and covers issues as diverse as driving safety, mental wellbeing, criminal law and cooking skills for independent living.

Careers and higher education guidance also form an important part of the PSHE programme.

Careers and Higher Education Programme

St Chris provides comprehensive guidance and support to help students formulate their plans following Sixth Form through the PSHE curriculum. This includes study skills training and talks by visiting speakers, as well as our annual Higher Education Conference which takes place at St Chris each autumn.

Each pupil also has a programme of one-to-one meetings with a dedicated Higher Education Adviser, who provides dedicated higher education application guidance and support.

The above career and higher education guidance runs in conjunction with our bespoke Pathways Careers Programme which consists of four elements: work experience; five year tracking; careers fairs and apprenticeship opportunities.

For more information about our Pathways Careers Programme please click here.

Options programme

The Options programme at St Chris is an integral part of the curriculum which takes place on one afternoon a week for all students in Years 7 to 12.

The aim of Options is to give students an opportunity to expand their horizons, learn and develop new skills and discover new opportunities.

Sixth Form students participate in the Options programme for the first three Options blocks in the year and are able to select from a broad range of topics – creative, physical, community/social awareness and academic.

A list of recent Options includes:

  • Advanced Cookery
  • Amnesty International Group
  • Archery
  • Athletics
  • Bangs, Balloons, Bubbles and Science
  • Badminton
  • Be Green – Zen Garden
  • Card Games
  • Canoeing
  • Chess
  • Climbing
  • Cricket
  • Cross Fit
  • Cycle Maintenance
  • Debate
  • Drama Productions
  • Electronics
  • Enamelling & Jewellery Making
  • Film Making
  • Geocaching
  • Knitting
  • Origami and Tea Tasting
  • Mini Drones
  • Mock Trial
  • Mosaics
  • Mountain Biking
  • Poetry Writing
  • Recycled Fashion Show
  • Road Cycling
  • Robotics
  • Rounders
  • Rugby
  • Science of Food
  • Scuba Diving
  • Sculpture
  • Skateboarding
  • Spanish Films
  • Spinning
  • St Chris Radio
  • Table Tennis
  • Tennis
  • Wild Wood Walking

For further information about the co-curricular activities offered in the Sixth Form at St Chris please see our Sixth Form Activities page here.

Structure of the Day

The main St Chris school day runs from 8.30am to 3.55pm and is made up of five lessons.

8.30 to 9.10am           Registration or Morning Talk

9.10 to 10.10am          Period 1

10.10 to 10.30am        Break

10.30 to 11.30am        Period 2

11.40 to 12.40pm        Period 3

12.40 to 1.40pm          Lunch

1.40 to 1.45pm            Registration

1.45 to 2.45pm            Period 4

2.55 to 3.55pm           Period 5

Morning Talks

Morning Talks, the St Chris name for an Assembly, take place three times a week for Sixth Form. They are for the whole school on a Monday and Friday, with a dedicated Sixth Form Morning Talk each Thursday.

There is a rolling programme of visiting speakers and Morning Talks also provide an excellent opportunity for music and performance – both as a collective and in smaller groups. Morning Talks also include a period of silence, a tradition which has long been held at the School, which gives pupils and staff alike the time and space to think about what they have heard in the context of their own life and that of the wider community.

You will be asked to participate in Sixth Form Morning Talks and have input into the subjects covered.  In the past, students have delivered Morning Talks both in groups and individually – to the great benefit of all.