The Young Learner

15-17 years : Pre-University

Pre-University - a challenging programme to help you prepare for future university and career choices.


Winchester Levels

Upper-intermediate to proficiency
(CEFR B2 - C2)


5 July - 2 August 2024 (2, 3 or 4 weeks)

22.5 hours*


Founded in 1382, Winchester College is one of Britain's leading independent schools with a reputation for academic excellence.

The peaceful, spacious campus offers a safe environment in magnificent grounds

Facilities include a theatre, performance spaces, sports hall, tennis and squash courts, and extensive grounds for a range of outdoor sports and games

College Grounds
Sports Hall
Porter's Lodge
Aerial View


  • Live and study in one of Europe's most beautiful, historic cities. An ideal, peaceful location for learning
  • A challenging programme to prepare more advanced students for future university and career choices
  • Free time in Winchester - discover the historic, vibrant city centre with your new international friends
  • Discuss university and career pathways with our staff
  • Deliver effective presentations in English with fluency and confidence.

Isabella, Germany

I heard about Discovery Summer from a friend and she said it was so good that I decided to come. The campus is really impressive, the facilities are great and I cannot believe how much my spoken English has improved - I feel much more confident when I speak now. I definitely want to come again. My favourite excursion was to Bath - it was such an interesting place and I loved learning a bit more about British history and culture.

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Javier, Spain

I came back because last year was so good and I wanted to repeat the experience. I took my IELTS exam yesterday and hope to have scored well. There was a really good mix of nationalities and I've made new friends from Italy and Turkey. I knew the English Student Hosts from last year. It was great to be with them again!.

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Kristina, Russia

It was my first time with Discovery Summer and I'm happy to say that I got a wonderful experience here. All majors and minors were dedicated to help us with one of the most important choices in our life: our choice of future career. I'm planning to study International Relations at university, that's why I decided to do correspoinding majors (International Relations and Economics & Business Studies) in Winchester. Without any doubts I can say, that these classes helped me and I became sure of my choice. It's also necessary to mention that minors (Philosophy, Creative Writing, Debating) gave me an opportunity to practice some general skills.

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Useful documents to download in PDF format

Lots of opportunities to
experience British culture
and speak English with our
English Student Hosts! Free airport transfers from Heathrow and Gatwick


  • 22.5 hours' tuition per week divided between Majors (13.5hrs), Minors (6hrs), Masterclasses (3hrs) and end-of-week presentation (1.5hrs)
  • Select one Major and one Minor per week
  • Classes are practical - you learn by doing
  • Maximum class size: 16 international students*
  • Optional Exam: IELTS exam (at extra cost, subject to availability)
  • Specialist teachers bring complex subjects to life
*In exceptional cases, in order to place students at their correct level, maximum class size may be exceeded.


You select 1 Major + 1 Minor per week from the following (click a heading below for more details):

Economics & Business

Winchester Economics & Business


Understand the world around you as you explore modern economic theory. Through interactive simulations, analyse key ideas linked to economic thought in the 21st century.

Designed by our experienced academic team, this challenging programme has been developed for 15-17 year old international students who already have some knowledge as well as those who are new to the subject area.

By the end of the programme, you will have a clear understanding of whether you should pursue further studies in Business & Economics at university.

Topics (each week you will study different topics)

  • Macroeconomics Explore the big picture of an entire economy, focusing on topics such as inflation, unemployment and economic growth. Understand how taxation, inflation rates and monetary policy influence the job market and standard of living.
  • Microeconomics Delve into key concepts e.g. market structures, supply and demand and consumer behaviour to understand how people make purchasing decisions. Learn to critically analyze complex economic and business problems, evaluate data, and draw meaningful conclusions
  • World Economics Explore contemporary complex ideas such as international trade and developmental economics. Understand the complex challenges related to poverty, inequality, education and governance to foster sustainable economic progress and debate your proposals
  • Economic Principles for Successful Business Understand how to develop business from the ground up, what makes a successful business and how to find investors for financing. Apply real-world skills e.g. how to develop and convincingly present a detailed business plan.

Skills & Outcomes

A challenging programme for the next generation of leaders and decision makers.

  • Understand new ways of analysing and making sound economic decisions
  • Discuss and express core economic principles effectively
  • Develop financial literacy; essential for managing personal finances and evaluating business performance
  • Develop proficiency in data analysis; crucial for evidence-based decision-making.

International Relations

Winchester International Relations


Understand the world around you as you explore the interdisciplinary nature and application of international relations while looking at some of the most pressing issues facing the world today - economic, social, political and environmental.

Designed by our experienced academic team, this challenging programme has been developed for 15-17 year old international students who already have some knowledge, as well as those who are new to to the subject area.

By the end of the programme, you will have a clear understanding of whether you should pursue further studies in International Relations at university.

Topics (each week you will study different topics)

Realism vs Liberalism

Explore the foundational debate between realist and liberal perspectives. Realism emphasizes power, self-interest, and the role of the state as the primary actor in international politics, while liberalism emphasizes cooperation, institutions, and the potential for global governance.

Conflict and Cooperation

Understand the causes of international conflicts and the mechanisms for resolving them. Research concepts like war and peace, diplomacy, international organizations, and how states interact on the global stage

Globalization and International Economy

Examine how economic factors, trade, finance, and multinational corporations influence international relations, as well as the role of international institutions like the World Trade Organization (WTO) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

Skills & Outcomes

A challenging programme for the next generation of leaders and decision makers. On this course, you will:

  • Refine your public speaking skills, become confident in defending your ideas
  • Learn how to mediate disputes, build consensus, and negotiate sensitively
  • Analyse modern media e.g. the news, blogs, reports and evaluate sources of news.

Film Making

Winchester Film Making


Produce high-quality, short films in multi-national groups. Develop film production skills - generate storyboards, edit scripts, perform in and shoot your film. Explore technical aspects , or take a leadership role as the director.

Designed by our experienced academic team, this creative arts programme has been designed for 15-17 year old international students who might be acting and film making for the first time, while also challenging those with previous experience.

By the end of this course, you will be equipped with the skills and knowledge to bring your cinematic visions to life.

Special effects

Learn how to create special effects Using a green screen. Create combat scenes, sci-fi sequences and enjoy bringing your creative ideas to life.

Composition/camera angles

Master the art of camera angles and shot composition. Create visually engaging sequences or capture cinematographic moments with the perfect camera angle.


Explore how to set up and control lighting equipment, create different moods through lighting, and use natural light to your advantage for various scenes.

Sound Recording

Acquire skills in recording quality audio using microphones, audio recorders, and boom poles

Skills & Outcomes

  • Explore film analysis, apply composition theory
  • Delegate tasks, give and receive constructive feedback, and solve creative challenges as a team
  • Present your work at the weekly premiere screening in front of students and guests

IELTS/Academic English

Winchester IELTS


Prepare for IELTS (International English Language Testing System), the most popular English language proficiency test for higher education.

Designed by our experienced academic team, this programme has been developed for 15-17 year old international students who may be applying to an English-speaking university programme in the future.

By the end of the programme, you will have a clear understanding of the skills and techniques needed to sit the exam with confidence.


Optional: IELTS exam may be taken on Thursday 18 July or Thursday 1 August 2024, subject to availability and at extra cost (approx. 250 GBP - including exam fees, payable to the exam centre and travel expenses).

Areas of study

Writing paper

Learn how answer writing papers effectively. Write clear thesis statements, develop coherent paragraphs and understand how to describe data and trends

Reading paper

Develop effective techniques such as skimming, scanning, and identifying keywords to navigate four texts under exam timings.

Listening paper

Through exposure to a range of audio materials, such as conversations, lectures, and discussions, understand and respond to information accurately.

Speaking paper

Broaden your range of language, fluently express your thoughts and effectively communicate ideas on various topics, showcasing your speaking proficiency in English.

Skills & Outcomes

  • Improve your English language skills, including grammar, vocabulary, pronunciation, and fluency, to effectively communicate in both written and spoken English
  • Sharpen your ability to understand spoken English by listening to a wide range of audio materials
  • Produce well-organised and well written persuasive written responses
  • Understand what examiners are looking for in an effective communicator. Enhance your ability to express your ideas clearly and coherently.

Advanced STEM

Winchester Advanced STEM


Understand the world around you as you explore the interdisciplinary nature and application of Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths. Work with our science teacher as you engage in hands-on experiments, problem-solving challenges, and interactive activities that will ignite your passion for discovery and innovation.

Designed by our experienced academic team, this challenging programme has been developed for 15-17 year old international students who already have a passion for STEM, as well as those interested in exploring it for the first time.

By the end of this course, you'll not only have a deeper understanding of the STEM disciplines but also be well-equipped to tackle the complex challenges of our increasingly technology-driven world.

Topics (each week you will study different topics)


Observe magnetic fields, investigate magnetic strength and record your findings. Create a simple galvanometer to measure current, construct electromagnets and design experiments to study them


Build marble tracks, explore kinetic energy and velocity. Follow scientific method to collect data, record results and draw conclusions

Camera Obscura

Construct a camera obscura, a precursor to modern cameras as you understand the fundamental principles of light and image projection

Renewable Energy Fair

Create interactive exhibits showcasing various forms of renewable energy, such as solar panels, wind turbines, and hydroelectric generators.

Skills & Outcomes

  • Develop your understanding of mathematical and scientific theories in English
  • Enhance analytical thinking strategies and apply theory to practice
  • Demonstrate to the school your evidence-based thinking process and share your conclusions in an interactive science fair

Technology & AI

Winchester Technology & AI


Understand the impact of AI on modern technology and become a thought leader of tomorrow. Explore the fundamentals of AI, its applications and ethical considerations. Through hands-on projects (no coding skills required), explore how AI will shape our future.

Designed by our experienced academic team, this challenging AI and Technology programme has been created for 15-17 year old international students who might already have some knowledge as well as those who are new to the subject area.

By the end of this course, you'll be able to confidently apply theoretical knowledge to real-world challenges; ready for future academic success in these fields.

Topics & Interactive Projects

Machine Learning

Understand AI concepts of machine learning by developing your own movie recommendation system.

Natural Language Processing

Use a no-code platform to design and train a chatbot to answer questions or engage in conversations on topics you're passionate about

Understand Deep Learning

Use pre-trained deep learning models to recognize and classify objects in images. Utilise AI image recognition apps or platforms to build a project that can identify objects, animals, or even plant species from photos you provide

Skills & Outcomes

  • Understand the basics of Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, and Deep Learning.
  • Explore the real-world applications of AI in various industries.
  • Analyze the ethical and societal implications of AI and technology.
  • Develop problem-solving and critical-thinking skills through hands-on projects.


Film Making
IELTS Speaking & Listening
Cultural English
Digital Photography
Politics / Model UN
Business Studies


Develop analytical thinking skills, engage in discussions at a pre-university level in e.g. advanced leadership skills, financial analysis, inspirational architecture

Business Masterclass

International Relations
Academic English


  • Afternoons: Wide choice of afternoon activities designed for older teens including sports, fitness and wellbeing, art & design, speech and drama
  • Evenings: Exciting range of entertainment including off campus team challenges, talent shows, relaxed nights in houses
  • Special events: Ceilidh (traditional dancing), archery and formal dinners. Weekly discos at the University of Winchester
  • Excursions: 2 excursions per week e.g. London, Oxford, Thorpe Park, Bristol, trips to the seaside
  • Free time in Winchester: Explore the sights, shops and cafes with your friends on 2-3 afternoons a week.
  • PLUS: Lots of opportunities to practise English with our English Student Hosts.


  • Boarding houses are situated a short walk from the main campus
  • Comfortable bedrooms with 1 - 6 beds and shared bathrooms. Winchester is an historic, traditional school so do not expect 5-star accommodation!
  • Supervision on campus, some free time as appropriate for this age group
  • Resident house parents look after you throughout your stay
  • 3 meals a day taken in New Hall. A healthy range of food to suit international students
  • Responsible students may go out in small groups on some afternoons to explore Winchester city centre
  • Restricted access to mobile phones. WiFi available.
  • Find out more about Welfare and Accommodation

College Hall


Course No. Arrival Date Departure Date Weeks Fees
20 Fri 5 July Fri 19 July 2 £3750
21 Fri 5 July Fri 26 July 3 £5625
22 Fri 5 July Fri 2 Aug 4 £7500
23 Fri 12 July Fri 2 Aug 3 £5625
24 Fri 19 July Fri 2 Aug 2 £3750

Room size: 1-6 | Hours' tuition/week: 22.5* | Max. class size: 16

Click here to make a booking.

Included in the fees

  • All tuition and teaching materials
  • Student folder, academic report, DS certificate and course photo
  • DS reusable water bottle
  • Participation of resident English Student Hosts
  • Full board residential accommodation
  • Transport and entry fees on all excursions
  • Varied daily programme to cater for all interests and abilities
  • Close supervision by our resident staff
  • Personal laundry for machine washable clothes
  • Medical and Travel Insurance (see Terms & Conditions)
  • Airport transfers on published arrival/departure days for flights scheduled to arrive/depart between 09.00-16.00 from/to: Heathrow or Gatwick
  • For transfers on specific dates/times from/to Eurostar St. Pancras, please contact us.

NOT included in the fees

  • Transfers for those arriving/departing outside our free scheduled times on arrival/departure dates at the airports specified above
  • Optional IELTS exam (approx. £250)
  • Courier fee (e.g. for visa invitation letter), if required, £50.


The Pre-University programme is designed for students who already have at least Upper-Intermediate (B2) level of English.

If you are unsure of your level, complete our quick online level check test.

Our Head Office team will then advise you if this course is suitable for you.


Any questions?

Our small dedicated Head Office team are here to help: