How to get into Dulwich College

Aliya Mrochuk

July 27, 2016

What to expect from registration, admissions, examinations and more, for students wanting to get into Dulwich College.

Dulwich College

Type: Independent day and boarding school for boys, ages 11 - 18

Day Fees:
£6,305, per term
Registration fee: £100
Deposit (refunded upon student’s departure): £1,650

Boarding Fees:
Weekly Boarders: £12,339, per term
Full Boarders: £13,160, per term
Registration Fee: £100, per term
Deposit (refunded upon student’s departure): £1,650

Please note that for boarders, a deposit equivalent to one term’s fees (£13,160) is also required at the beginning of the term, which will be put towards your son’s first term fee. The fees also exclude the cost of public examinations and students’ lunch.

More information about fees, and how and where to pay them can be found here.

Current Head: Joe Spence, PhD.

About Dulwich College
Each year, Dulwich College welcomes over 1500 students to its 70 acre site on Dulwich Common, south London. As one of three Dulwich Schools of the Foundation, Dulwich College celebrates the spirituality, talent and fortune of their founder, Edward Alleyn.

The school’s mission is to “ensure that all pupils from a variety of backgrounds can feel secured and equally valued.”

Dulwich logo

Why is it so popular?
Dulwich College has had nearly 400 years to create a legacy in all aspects of student culture and academics. In 2015, nearly 86% of students earned A or A* at the GCSE, while several of their graduates were accepted into top-notch universities, including Oxford, Cambridge and York.  

How do I know if Dulwich College is right for me?
Dulwich invites parents and students alike to attend one of their Open Days, or to book a visit during a school tour, both of which are specific to your son’s entry level and which will allow you to experience Dulwich culture first hand.

The first Open Morning for 11+ is on 8th October 2016 from 9.30 a.m. to 12.00 noon, and does not require a booking. Senior staff members for Dulwich’s Middle School (13+) are more than happy to arrange an appointment to meet with parents and students privately, or you can book a tour beginning on 14th September 2016 at 2.15 p.m. Lastly, 16+ candidates are encouraged to request an individual appointment to tour the school and speak with Upper School staff.

Admissions Policy
Most students register for Dulwich College in September or November the year preceding their proposed entry, and include in their registration the relevant fee (see Fees), a passport size photograph, and any additional supporting papers (references, requests for special requirements, etc).   

Placement for 11+ and 13+ is offered on the basis of exam and interview performance, and a report from the student’s current school.  

Placement for 16+ is a more prolonged admissions process. Your son will sit entrance papers or interviews in the four A Level subjects that he intends to study at Dulwich. Offers are then based on your son’s performance in these exams, as well as his interview and, if applicable, GCSE results.

If your son is currently working toward GCSEs, Dulwich will award him 3 points per A*, 2 points per A and 1 point per  B grade. Students must receive at least 14 points to be considered for entry, and their scores must include studies in English, Mathematics, and an A* or A in the four subjects they wish to study at A Level.    

Dulwich inside (small)
What are Dulwich College exams and interviews like, and how can I do well?
All students who excel in their examinations will also sit for an interview, but the examinations themselves vary by entry level.

Boys entering at 11+ will sit papers in Verbal and Non-Verbal Reasoning, Mathematics and English, while boys entering at 13+ will write the same examinations in addition to Science and, upon acceptance, French or Spanish.

Boys entering at 16+ will sit entrance papers or interviews in the four A Level subjects that they intend to study at Dulwich. Subjects that rely heavily on oral or performative skills (e.g. Modern Languages, Theatre Studies, Physical Education, Classics, Art, and Design Technology) will be assessed by interview, rather than by paper. Interviews (both general and subject specific) will be primarily academic, but will also ask students to speak about their other interests, and how they might socially contribute to the school.

Dulwich’s interview and exam process can be difficult, and students are encouraged to read the specimen papers provided by Dulwich before they write their own exams. For the interview portion, it is helpful to read through Dulwich’s Welcome or Entry Procedures, and jot down a few ways you might prove yourself in line with Dulwich’s vision. For example, Dulwich cites “intellectual ability” and a “strong work ethic” as particularly admirable assets in their candidates. Preparing a few examples of how you embody these values will help you stand out in the crowd of applicants.   

Best of luck!

If you would like more advice on Dulwich College Admissions:

Go to Tutorfair and search through our fantastic selection of Admissions tutors. We also have experienced 11 plus tutors.

1. You can also scroll to the top of Tutorfair and enter "Dulwich College Admissions" and your postcode. Tutorfair will show you Dulwich College Admissions tutors in your area, with the top rated tutors at the top! (You can even search for subject specific tutors in your area.)

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