Honours Academy & Russell Group Universities | Bridgwater & Taunton College

The Bridgwater & Taunton College Honours Academy is a unique opportunity for students to amplify their educational experience when wishing to go on to study at Russell Group universities. It provides additional tuition and skills development, creating a dynamic learning environment both inside and outside the classroom.

As our students strive for excellence, the Honours Academy supports their journey. The Academy focuses on enhancing key skills like public speaking, leadership, and social interaction, which are crucial components of the My BTC Advantage programme. By pushing students to excel academically and personally, the Honours Academy aligns with the My BTC Advantage’s goal of moulding confident, ambitious individuals with a plethora of knowledge and skills.

For those specifically targeting Oxford and Cambridge, an enhanced Pathway to Oxbridge is a part of our Honours Academy, available to both A Level and IB students.


Preparing for Top Universities and Sought-After Employment

In today’s competitive academic market, preparation is key. The Honours Academy is designed to ready students for prestigious universities and coveted job positions. It encourages them to aim high, promoting a drive for progression to the most demanding institutions. These skills not only enable a successful application; they also transfer directly into future career interview skills, especially for those demanding high-level companies and institutions.

The My BTC Advantage and the Honours Academy complement each other by emphasising ambition and the pursuit of excellence. They both advocate for maintaining outstanding attendance and nurturing the skills necessary for achieving academic and professional success. The My BTC Advantage’s focus on career goals aligns seamlessly with the Honours Academy’s mission to guide students toward top universities and employment opportunities.

For students aspiring to join prestigious universities like Oxford and Cambridge, admissions tests play a critical role in the selection process. These tests help these renowned institutions differentiate among the many highly qualified applicants. Admissions tests are part of the Oxbridge tradition and an integral component; applicants are encouraged to research, practice, and use available resources to excel in these tests. This is something the Pathway to Oxbridge element of the Honours Academy supports, as well as honing knowledge of the digital test platforms the tests are conducted on.


Mastering the Art of Effective Communication

One of the cornerstones of personal and professional growth is effective communication. The Honours Academy actively cultivates this skill, helping students communicate clearly, confidently, and diplomatically.

The importance of effective communication is highlighted in the My BTC Advantage, which recognises the value of being an efficient communicator. By participating in the Honours Academy, students put theory into practice. They engage in discussions, present their ideas, and improve their articulation. These experiences not only benefit academic pursuits but also equip students with a crucial skill set applicable to their future careers.

In an immediate sense, this supports their applications to Russell Group universities, many of which have a clear interview process that requires much preparation work. For Oxford University, for example, depending on what is relevant for the course they are applying for, applicants are often given a poem, a graph, or an object, and then asked to answer questions and comment on it. Our Honours Academy prepares our students for any obstacles they may face throughout this process.


Building a Local and Global Network

The Honours Academy offers more than just academic support; it connects students with a diverse range of people. This network includes visiting experts, former college students who have progressed to prestigious universities, and professionals from various fields.

For example, previous Master Classes have taken place, including admissions officers from Exeter and Oxford universities to advise on applications, and college collaborators from Next Steps South West. Key speakers have included Sir Peter Wall, former Chief of the General Staff, and John Dobai, a Holocaust survivor.

Students have also been invited to an Oxbridge Interview Preparation Day at Millfield School, and have taken part in a four-night, five-day residential course at Oxford.

The My BTC Advantage underscores the importance of building a global network. The connections students form during their time in the Honours Academy can be invaluable in their pursuit of international opportunities. In today’s interconnected world, a robust network can open doors to global career prospects and unique experiences. The Honours Academy is a significant contributor to expanding students’ horizons and connections, enriching their My BTC Advantage journey.


Experiencing International Opportunities

The Honours Academy also offers international experiences, such as collaborations with US universities. These opportunities provide students with a global perspective, preparing them for success on the international stage.

The Sutton Trust Programme exists to identify the UK’s most talented state school students, and seeks to provide them with the opportunity to experience US culture and higher education first-hand through a weeklong programme in the US. In 2023 alone, a student used this opportunity to secure a scholarship and study-place at the University of Indianapolis.

These experiences encourage them to become active global citizens, working towards meaningful change, whether in their future careers or personal lives.


In conclusion, the Honours Academy enriches students’ educational journeys by enhancing their academic, personal, and professional growth. As it closely aligns with the My BTC Advantage, students enjoy a holistic development experience. These two programmes work hand in hand to prepare students for successful futures at Russell Group universities and equips them with skills and experiences that will serve them well throughout their lives.

For more information please contact Information & Advice on 01278 441234 or by emailing info@btc.ac.uk, visit our website or come to one of our events.

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