Curriculum rationale

The British curriculum, highly valued by the best universities, allows students to specialise in three or four subjects.

Our intent and rationale for our curriculum approach is to provide a truly bespoke education, tailored to each student’s academic profile, aspirations and future career plans. At the heart of this, we want students to attain a range of rigorous British A-Level qualifications, and achieve well across these in order to successfully access the next steps in their international educational journey, as well as prepare them for life outside school. We have adopted International A-Levels (IALs) which provide our students with opportunities to embrace a modular examination strategy; breaking down the A-Level examinations into several modules. This strategy ensures that students are able to build on cumulative academic successes to reach beyond their potential. 

We adopt a holistic approach with focused mentoring guidance for each student, expert teaching in each subject by qualified teachers, and excellent pastoral care and careers advice. We aim to provide a curriculum which extends and stimulates students’ intellectual curiosity, within and beyond the classroom and the examination specifications.  

Furthermore, our educational provision includes extra opportunities for students to develop their confidence, leadership and collaborative working skills as these are transferable skills useful in preparing them for real life. The co-curricular options reflect pathways aligned with each student’s Roadmap and career plans, and as such enhances their preparedness for success beyond the gates of Virtus, ready to confidently take their place in the world. 

In summary, the alignment of student aims and needs with the breadth of our curriculum, embodied in our Gate-to-Gate Model, ensures an educational provision that not only is a catalyst for academic excellence, but also puts the challenges of the 21st and the future stages of the student’s life at the forefront of their experience at Virtus.

the International

At Virtus, we work with the International A-Levels (IALs), a variant of the conventional A-Level in which students are officially examined in January and May of Year 12 and Year 13, dividing the examination content into four series instead of one. In addition, each subject is divided into modules (separate components) that allow work around the syllabus in a more structured way.

Examination with the International A-Levels

Year 12

Year 13

Examination with other programmes

Year 12

Year 13

The advantages of International A-Levels compared to conventional A-Levels or the International Baccalaureate:

Same international recognition by universities: IALs are no exception, all universities in the world accept them and grant the same prestige.

Better results: separating the exam content into four different series increases the probability of achieving better results.

Credible and endorsed predicted grades: obtaining official grades in Year 12 means that the predicted grades are backed by an official grade, giving universities greater confidence in their offers.

Better management of pressure and stress: as there are four different examination series, students face the same content but in small doses, thus reducing stress. In addition, they gain more experience sitting official exams and learning to deal with pressure.

Better control of expectations: regular exams are the “acid test” for meeting expectations. Students are more efficiently tracked in four separate exam series.

Allows for second chances: as the International A-Level subjects are organised into separate modules, students who want to improve their grades can retake a particular module more than once.