Tier 4 Sponsorship
d’Overbroeck’s is licensed to sponsor students under the points based system for Tier 4 (Child) and Tier 4 (General) visas. You may find it helpful to read the UK Visas and Immigration policy guidance Tier 4 Policy Guidance to find out more about the points based system.
Applicants who wish to be sponsored must make this clear on their application form and must provide copies of their current Passport, including any UK visa or Biometric Residence Permit (BRP) in addition to their personal statement and school reports with their application.
For enrolled students who require Tier 4 student visas: We issue CASs (Confirmation of Acceptance Studies) in May/June preceding entry. Please note that for these students a full year’s tuition and boarding fee must be paid in advance.
English as an Additional Language (EAL)
We are a leading provider of EAL support to international students studying in an independent school. We have been pioneering in our approach and have always sought to ensure international students can integrate easily with UK students in and out of the classroom, can perform to the highest level in their studies and are able to choose exactly what they want to study and where they want to study without being constrained by their language skills. Rather than doing “just enough” or simply providing exam-focused tuition targeted at a particular language certificate, we aim to empower students to enjoy studying in a foreign language by enabling them to excel in all they do and feel able to express their ideas confidently. Our focus on EAL to support students in their studies and in their personal and social development is part of an approach that helps students set high goals for themselves and go beyond the minimum required to simply pass an exam.
International students joining us for Sixth Form will enjoy a five term EAL Enrichment Programme designed specifically to support their integration into a British school and to enhance their engagement with and performance in their academic subjects. Their EAL classes will be delivered by specialist teachers and focus on their academic needs within given subject areas.
For many years, international students at d’Overbroeck’s have been highly successful in gaining places at top UK universities and a key part of this preparation is achieving a high level of proficiency in English. As university studies require an even greater level of English than A levels do, a strong command of English is also key to success at university. Our EAL programme is designed to help our students achieve both of these objectives.
Do I need EAL support?
If your first language is not English, you will be assessed when you apply for a place and will be expected to attend our EAL Enrichment Programme.
All international students will join our EAL Enrichment Programme unless, under exceptional circumstances, they already hold a formal qualification in English at a standard which is sufficient to meet the academic entry of good UK universities and we judge them to be equivalent to native speakers in all language skills.
What is EAL at d’Overbroeck’s?
EAL provides skills, strategies and support for students with English as an Additional Language. As such, EAL at d’Overbroecks is far more than just an advanced course in Academic English. The primary aims of the EAL programme at d’Overbroeck’s are as follows:
- to provide our international students with the academic language, the communication skills and study strategies that are essential for academic success at A level and in their further studies at university
- to equip our students with a language qualification for entry into Higher Education (Trinity ISE iii and IELTS)
- to enable our students to cope with the language challenges they face in their daily life as an international student in the UK and enable them to fully participate in all aspects of school life. Too often at other schools, international students gain the skills to cope with the demands of their subjects, but struggle outside of that to integrate fully with their classmates. We want to make sure our international students feel at home and are a key part of activities, debates and lessons – strong language skills are essential to this.
We know you can speak, read and write English reasonably well, because you have met the entrance criteria for d’Overbroeck’s, but ask yourself the following questions:
- Do you have the academic language skills necessary to excel at university or in your chosen career?
- Do you know which grammatical structures most commonly occur in Geography / Economics / History?
- Did you know that ‘critical’, ’imperative’ and ‘paramount’ are synonyms for the word ‘important’? Did you know that ‘significant dilemma’ could be another way of saying ‘big problem’? Were you aware of the collocation ‘a seemingly insurmountable problem’?
- Are you confident enough in your communication skills to take an active part in life outside of the classroom in an English-speaking school?
These are the kinds of things you will be learning with us.
Which language exams will I prepare for?
All EAL students will take the Trinity Integrated Skills in English (ISE) examination, an internationally recognised English language qualification, at the end of their first year in the Sixth Form. We expect most of our students to achieve at least a pass grade at Level iii at this point (C1 on the Common European Framework of Reference).
Trinity ISE iii is an internationally recognised C1 level qualification. It is recognised by leading universities including Russell Group universities. Along with a growing number of universities, we believe that the Trinity ISE exam is a more effective way to prepare our students for academic life in the UK, both for A Level and university study. The links between the different components (listening and speaking, reading and writing) reflect authentic language use and, therefore, help students to develop the advanced language, communication skills and study strategies that they need to be successful in their studies.
This echoes our firm belief that effective EAL support is more than just preparing students for an exam.
After they have taken the Trinity ISE exam, students will also have the opportunity to take the IELTS exam at the end of their first year in the Sixth Form and will have directed lessons for the preparation for this exam.
How is EAL taught at d’Overbroeck’s?
International students joining us for Sixth Form will enjoy a five term EAL Enrichment Programme designed specifically to support their integration into a British school and to enhance their engagement with and performance in their academic subjects.
Their EAL classes will be delivered by specialist teachers and focus on their academic needs within given subject areas.
Students will have up to 4 lessons per week, which will include the following:
- Subject-focused language lessons to support particular areas of the curriculum, such as sciences, maths, social sciences, humanities etc.
- EPQ support
- Academic language development
- Examination preparation for Trinity ISE iii (to be taken in the summer term) and IELTS to support their university applications.
Terms 4 and 5
Students will have one lesson a week, building on the work covered in Year 12 and focusing on specific second year needs before their A levels begin. This will include the following:
- Subject-focused language development
- Academic language skills for university preparation
- Support with university applications
- EPQ support
Students who do not pass the Trinity ISE iii examination will be required to take additional EAL tuition which will focus on their language development and the exam papers which they did not pass. This could be in the form of small groups or 1:1 lessons and a personalised EAL study plan will be designed in liaison with the individual student. The Trinity papers will be retaken after Term 1 and some students may be entered for Level ii to ensure that they have a valid certificate for university entry by the end of the Upper Sixth.
Through links to the Trinity ISE III exam techniques and the use of real life A Level materials from your subject lessons, the EAL course will:
- Develop your awareness and command of the formal and informal language that you need for different audiences and subjects
- Provide you with strategies to improve your range of academic vocabulary and advanced grammatical structures and show you how to relate these to your A Level studies
- Improve the English language skills that you need to succeed in the classroom, such as making presentations, analysing different sources, writing a range of formal academic texts, etc.
- Develop your transferable study skills, such as critical thinking, collaboration, problem-solving, analysing data, summarising, note-taking, etc.
- Support you in all aspects of life as an international student in the UK and prepare you for the language demands of university life
- Prepare you for the Trinity ISE and IELTS exams including mock exams, intensive input on exam skills and strategy, extensive feedback on performance and taking students through exam applications.
What website are there to look at?
A very useful website on life in higher education and what you can expect
The main application site for British universities
A very useful website with information and practice materials for the Trinity ISE exam
An excellent free dictionary, thesaurus and idioms dictionary
Who will teach me?
All of our EAL teachers are qualified to postgraduate diploma level in English language teaching, either DELTA or DIPTEFLA, and are highly experienced in teaching EAL and preparing international students for the challenges of studying in the UK. We are all passionate about our subject and utterly determined to work towards your goals and your success. Ali Talbot is Head of EAL over all d’Overbroeck’s sites and works under the Head of the International School.
What might the subject lead onto?
Any university will expect you to have language skills that allow you to both excel in your subject and to fully participate in the life of the university, both academically and socially. Any global multinational company will conduct a huge amount of its business in English and will expect the vast majority of its employees to be able to both understand and communicate to an advanced level both in speaking and writing. Your grasp of the English language will remain your most precious skill, long after A levels and higher education have passed and, without a shadow of a doubt, you will continue to use it throughout your adult life. With an advanced level of English, the world is quite simply your oyster.