The Senior School follows the National Curriculum with, as its goal, almost all Year 11 pupils taking 9 GCSE examinations and Sixth Formers taking 3 or 4 full Advanced level subjects.
Dover College has a long commitment to excellence and opportunity in education. The curriculum reflects this, providing a wide range of modern and traditional subjects from which to make their choices.
During the first three years in the Senior School, the emphasis is placed on sound preparation in basic academic skills and, during Year 9, thorough advice on appropriate GCSE options is provided.
In addition to the National Curriculum core subjects of English, Mathematics and Science, pupils in Years 7 -9 will also study subjects which they may choose as an option at GCSE.
A structured Personal and Social Education course is also delivered by school staff in Priory and the Houses. PSE introduces and discusses key moral, ethical and social issues at appropriate times in the pupils’ lives. It aims to foster a greater understanding of today’s society and to assist them in taking responsibilities for their own and their fellows’ well-being.
Enthusiastic commitment to sport, music and drama is also encouraged since all these subjects all build confidence and develop the team working skills so essential in life beyond school.
Years 7 to 9 are divided into 2 forms, with an average of 15 pupils all following the same syllabus in each subject. Students are placed in sets for some subjects, such as Mathematics and Modern Foreign Languages.
In Year 10 and 11 we aim to provide a demanding and flexible curriculum.
Preparation for GCSE takes two years: the examinations are not designed to be taken in less time, partly because of the content and the skills that have to be developed, and partly because a major element is coursework, i.e. the work done throughout the two years of study. For this reason everyone starting a course is advised that it is important to make the right choice, and that changing from one course to another is difficult, except at the very beginning.
Generally, AS level is studied in the Lower Sixth and A2 is studied in the Upper Sixth. The two combine to give a full A level. BTEC subjects are 6 or 12 unit courses at level 3.