I came to Godalming College from Rodborough School and decided to study subjects that I’ve always really loved: History, Art, and English Literature; as well as Art History, a completely new subject for me which I thought would link well with my other subjects. Throughout my two years here these subjects have become infinitely more exciting and fascinating to me due to the fantastic courses and independent, mature way we are encouraged to learn. Nothing is spoon-fed - we are taught the syllabus material but also the skills and techniques to think independently: how to interpret information, analyse it, evaluate it, construct arguments and articulate them; rather than being told what to think, we are taught how to think, and as a result I feel my own knowledge of the subjects is much more secure.
In Art I am constantly astounded by the amazing facilities and the freedom of the course, in which you are able to pursue your own ideas, creating projects that are original and personal, and with the guidance and ample materials available nothing is off-limits and your creativity has no bounds.
In English we are encouraged to generate individual ideas and produce evidenced personal responses to the texts we’ve studied. We are expertly guided and supported through the course, but it remains open-ended – we aren’t constricted to a certain belief about the texts, but rather led to consider different interpretations; our own ideas are respected and explored; and plenty of class discussion allows us to be inspired by each other’s thoughts. I feel like it’s a very engaging way to learn and has given me a much deeper understanding of the texts.
I also attended the Higher English sessions in my AS year, which was very inspiring. It introduced me to some difficult but incredibly interesting new literary concepts and gave me an impression of how writing has progressed through history, as well as more of an idea of what English may be like at university.
The constant support of the staff and their belief in their students to achieve their best helped me gain confidence in my own abilities. After I got good AS results, I was encouraged to apply for a place at Pembroke College, Cambridge, to study English - which is not something I had ever considered a real option for me. Due to the Aim High programme however, and my tutor who supported me through the complicated application process, as well as the support of the English department who prepared me with practice interviews, I actually received an offer from them which is really exciting!