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Eton College

School rating 4 / 5 by

Eton Windsor Berkshire SL4 6DW United Kingdom
6th to 12th
Boys only


Eton College review by .

The British exam system is, for the most part, based on assessment objectives: tick the boxes and you're guaranteed a great result. At Eton, while you are taught to tick the boxes, this is merely a preliminary measure: the emphasis in on going beyond the exam and enjoying the subject in all its depth. In English Literature, to take just one example, this means students enjoy deep and wide-ranging discussions not normally seen until the final year of a University degree. With excellent examination results expected and a huge proportion of the student body moving on to Oxford and Cambridge, Eton is best-suited to the highest-achieving students. That said, every student cannot be expected to excel in every subject and provision for those struggling is just as excellent. Close scrutiny is given to personal academic development and to progress relative to peers, which housemasters and personal tutors follow through the school's electronic reporting system: teachers file feedback for every student every couple of weeks. There is also a system of merits for good work (a few times a year, the very best pieces of work are put into the school's College Library, alongside some of the world's rarest manuscripts) as well as for poor or lazy work, meaning appraisal is effectively given every step of the way. For the first two years, class sizes are generally around twenty students per class. However, this becomes between three and ten students per class when students specialize in the final two years. Workload can seem daunting for some at first: students will often find themselves with several hours' worth of work to do on their own each weekday evening (called "EWs" [extra work] rather than homework, for obvious reasons). The emphasis is on learning to do things for oneself, and getting students started on the EW system early puts them in fantastic stead for University.

College Counseling

For those wishing to move on to Oxford or Cambridge, the provision is second-to-none. ....

Sample insights on college counseling

  • They have contacts at most of the major universities and feel perfectly comfortable picking up the phone and advocating for a student to get accepted somewhere they feel is a good fit for that student. However, these counselors are certainly not magic bullets. They cannot guarantee that a student will get into an Ivy League university...
  • For those wishing to move on to Oxford or Cambridge, the provision is second-to-none. In the months running up to application and interview, every subject faculty offers classes (often run by former Oxbridge tutors) exploring further areas of their subject as well as offering advice on personal statements, interview technique and more...

Admissions - Getting Accepted

Almost every applicant takes a test at age 11 which decides whether or not he....

Sample insights on admissions

  • For the interview, dress conservatively. Try to be very clean and put together. Also, I was a tour guide for two years and at the end of every tour, we were asked to evaluate the candidate so if you think the tour is not apart of the process, you are very wrong. Ask questions and be interested. Also, tip for the parents: the kids speak on the tour. Do not ask their questions for them...
  • Most younger siblings have an easy time in the admissions process. I can only think of one case of a younger sibling not being admitted. About half of the students who entered with me had come from public schools. The remainder came from private K-6 schools, or had transferred from other New York private schools The Elizabeth Morrow School and St. Bernard were two of the larger feeder schools...

School Life

The school's faculties and 25 boarding houses are spread around a village campus which is not separated from the outside world, but nonetheless safe thanks to both a police presence and the school's own security team. Every boy gets their own room in their boarding house: at no stage do they have to share with other students. Each boarding house consists of 50 boys, a matron and a housemaster. Pastoral care rarely falls short. The boarding house system does not preclude students from making friends in the wider school - in class, sport, drama and art, students will form lasting....

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