Our programme includes awareness raising, individual Information Advice and Guidance on routes and pathways into Higher Education, Campus Visits, Study Skills support, college and university preparation and specialist support for pupils with an interest in art and design or Creative subject areas.

The Programme

Campus Experience Programme

Delivered since 2000, this involves two informative and engaging visits to a university or college campus. Pupils undertake unique and exciting learning challenges, which not only provide a good insight into life at university but also help to map out future career opportunities within the context of higher education and the world of work. The Campus Days team, along with trained student mentors, use challenge-based activities, incorporating practical problem-solving, time management and learning mindsets, in addition to all-important study skills techniques, as part of this experience.

S5/6 Top-Up Programme

This programme is designed for pupils in the Senior Phase who would like to progress after school directly to university study. Successful completion of Top-Up means that university offers can be adjusted by up to two grades at Higher. Highly-trained postgraduate students deliver a programme that introduces key skills needed for successful study at higher education level, including note-taking, decision-making, planning and essay-writing. This element develops critical, conceptual thinking and independent learning and supports S5/6 pupils throughout the UCAS application process.

S5/6 Routes For All

Aimed at S5/6, this element of FOCUS West is aimed at pupils who would like to progress after school to Higher Education but would be more likely to enter via a college-based HNC/D course. Routes for All is a programme that concentrates on study skills, and preparation for examinations, courses and careers. The teams provide advice on applications, personal statements and interview skills and help to focus pupils on the practical requirements for progression to Higher National courses.

S5/6 Portfolio Development

This specialist element provides guidance for pupils likely to progress to art and design/ creative industry courses in Art at a college, a higher education institution, or an art school. Tutors and existing students at the Glasgow School of Art assist pupils with art/design portfolios needed for admission.

HE Guidance

Development workers will come out to your school and provide tailored, impartial and specific guidance for pupils aiming for university or college at HNC/HND level.

The team undertake one-to-one sessions with pupils which last 20 minutes and are conducted with:

  • S6 pupils from August to December (helping pupils with personal statements and selection of course choices) and
  • S5 pupils from January to March (preparing pupils for their application year)

A group workshop is also available on request in the month of June for S4 pupils, to encourage early reflection on future applications. This also helps to focus young people as they transition to S5 and embark on study for their Highers.

Focuspoint web resource: www.focuspoint.org.uk

All pupils attending our funded schools are entitled to access our bespoke pupil-facing website, Focuspoint. Focuspoint provides information, support and signposting for pupils S1-6 and can be used to investigate different career options and relevant HN or degree courses. Login details can be provided by FOCUS West link teachers or feel free to contact us by emailing focuswest@strath.ac.uk.