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Sixth Form

The Sixth Form Scholarship Competition for 2019 entry will take place 16-17 November 2018. 

The closing date for applications is Monday 29 October 2018.

At Gordonstoun we take pride in our holistic approach to the education of our students.  All students are stretched by the combination of academic, outdoor, cultural and sporting challenges offered as a fully integrated programme.  Gordonstoun, therefore, welcomes applications for Sixth Form Scholarships from candidates with academic prowess and those with skills in the above areas. 

We operate a policy of equal and open access, committed to educating young people regardless of nationality, background or financial resources.  We encourage applications from any young person who is capable of benefiting from a Gordonstoun education and who is committed to enhancing the life of the community.

For further information on our distinctive brand of education please visit our website:

The Scholarship examination, which takes place at Gordonstoun, forms the foundation of the assessment process.  Initial selection of potential candidates will be made following the receipt of reports obtained from their current Head Teacher.  Each candidate will take written papers: English, Mathematics and Verbal reasoning.  Copies of past papers are not available.  This process will also include practical problem solving exercises to demonstrate a student’s ability to think outside the box and apply prior knowledge.  Candidates will also be interviewed by senior members of the Gordonstoun Staff.

Candidates will be expected to show suitability for a Gordonstoun education and to have both pronounced talent, and a high level of achievement, in one of the following fields: Art, Design Technology, Drama, Computing, Music or Sport.  Candidates will be expected to have the potential to make a major contribution to School life.  Interviews will take place at Gordonstoun and auditions for Drama and Music awards will also take place at that time.  

Academic Scholarships

Candidates will be expected to show evidence of their ability to embark upon a two-year Sixth Form course with the prospect of obtaining the highest grade passes at GCSE & A-Level.  

All-Round Scholarships

These are for candidates who demonstrate a high level of ability and potential in several areas.  It is possible to apply for consideration for an All Round Scholarship and an Academic Scholarship or one of those awarded for specialist skills.

All Round candidates should also provide a short summary of their interests and achievements, emphasising their potential to contribute to the broader Gordonstoun curriculum


Candidates should be following a course in Art or Art and Design to GCSE or Scottish National 5 and be predicted to achieve a top grade at this level.  Candidates will be asked either to send in advance, or to bring to interview, a small portfolio of recent work, including drawings, sketch books, paintings, textile, design work and prints.  Any 3-dimensional or very large work may be represented by photographs.  Portfolios should aim to demonstrate the range and development as well as the standard of the work. (Further details will be sent to registered candidates).

Design Technology

Candidates will be expected to be studying Design Technology at GCSE or Scottish National 5 level and be predicted to achieve a top grade at this level. Candidates will be expected to make a statement about their interest and motivation in the subject and to produce a portfolio or projects and, if appropriate, photographs as evidence of design, workshop or graphic skills.  Candidates will be expected to study this subject at A Level.


Candidates may have studied, or be studying, Drama as an examinable subject at either GCSE or Scottish National 5 level.  Candidates will be expected to study Drama at A level. The awards are also open to those of exceptional ability who do not come within this category.  Substantial experience of some aspects of practical theatre-work (such as technical expertise, taking part in high-level performances, speech exams - or a good combination of such features) is expected as is a broad interest in the performing arts. (Further details will be sent to registered candidates).


Candidates should normally be following an examinable course in GCSE Computing or Scottish National 5 Computing Studies and be predicted to achieve a top grade at this level.  Candidates will be expected to study this subject at A-Level.  Candidates will be expected to submit a portfolio of their work.  The portfolio should aim to demonstrate a wide range of skills and should include examples of programs written.  Work can be submitted in either electronic or printed format.  Any references to material available for viewing on the World Wide Web should be included, if applicable.


Candidates must be musicians of considerable ability, with enthusiasm and motivation in all areas of this subject.  Candidates should normally be following a course in music to GCSE or Scottish National 5, however other candidates of exceptional ability who are not pursuing music as an examinable subject will be considered.  It is expected students will follow music at A level. Candidates will perform to a high technical level and are expected to have a playing standard comparable to Grade VII and above in their first instrument.  We would normally expect applicants to offer two instruments, but this is not essential.  The Gordonstoun Music Department does accept singing as a second instrument.  Successful candidates are expected to take a full and active leading role in the life of the Music Department.  Interested applicants or their parents are advised to contact the School’s Director of Music, Dr Glynn Jenkins before submitting an entry form: or telephone: 01343 837894.  (Further details will be sent to registered candidates).


Candidates should be sportsmen or sportswomen of outstanding ability, having gained or being very close to gaining representative honours at County level in two sports or National level in one sport.  The candidates will be expected to take a leading role in the promotion of sports participation amongst their peers, also to contribute fully in internal School competitions as well as demonstrate passion and enthusiasm for their own sports performances representing school teams with effort and commitment. Strong leadership qualities and a proven track record are also highly advantageous.

Value of Awards

Each Scholarship has a value of 10% of the applicable fee and can be augmented by a means-tested bursary where needed.  In a few limited cases, the total award (Scholarship and bursary) can be 100% of the fees, although lower awards are more typical.  The Awards are for the duration of the Sixth Form and are subject to review each year in the light of progress in all aspects of School life.

Specific Funds

We have access to funds which provide financial assistance to successful scholarship candidates, subject to means testing, in the following categories:

Externally Funded Scholarships

The School has been fortunate in recent years to receive funding from an external Charitable Trust for Scholarships to be awarded at Sixth Form level to candidates who show outstanding qualities of Leadership.  Parents and candidates may not request consideration for these awards but Gordonstoun may wish to present particular candidates involved in the Scholarship competition, and who have taken the Scholarship papers, to the Charitable Foundation for consideration.  The exact value of each Scholarship will be determined by the Trust once it has examined financial statements made by the parents of the nominated and approved candidates. Any externally funded Scholarships can again be augmented in case of financial need by a bursary from the School.

Means-tested Awards

Parents or guardians who need to apply for a means-tested bursary should request the appropriate form from the Fees Administrator by emailing or by telephoning 01343 837914.  The deadline for returning means-testing forms is Monday 25 March 2019.  Later applications will not be considered.

Sixth Form Curriculum

Gordonstoun follows the English A-Level examination system.  A-Levels are two year courses and examinations are taken at the end of the second year.  It is normal for most students to take three A-Levels.

Strong Mathematicians will often take Further Mathematics and non-native speakers are encouraged to take their home language as an extra fourth A-Level.

The School also prepares suitable students for the Oxford and Cambridge entrance procedures and for SAT entrance to universities in the USA.


An application form may be obtained from:

The Admissions Registrar
IV30 5RF  

T: 01343 837829

or can be downloaded here in PDF format. (You will need Adobe Reader which can be downloaded from the Adobe website).

Entry at Sixth Form booklet
Sixth Form Scholarships information booklet
Information form
Application form 

The application and information forms should be returned as soon as possible and certainly by the final closing date of Monday 29 October 2018.  The Exams and Interviews at Gordonstoun will take place on Friday 16 and Saturday 17 November 2018. There is no entry fee for this competition.  Candidates or their parents should inform their present Head before proceeding with an application.


If any student wishes to be considered for a full fee-paying place in the Sixth Form, he/she should complete the online Enquiry Form.  The Admissions Department will then be in contact to arrange a mutually convenient time for interview.

Further information is available from: 

The Director of Admissions or the Admissions Registrar
Moray IV30 5RF

T: (01343) 837829                  
F: (01343) 837808                

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