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Corpus Bridging Course

What is the Bridging Course, and why is Corpus doing this?

The bridging course is a central part of our continuing determination not only to  encourage applicants from a wide range of social and educational backgrounds, but also to give them the very best support right at the start of their studies. We recognise that there can be challenges surrounding access at selective universities such as Cambridge, and we are working hard with our colleagues to help resolve these. Having a diverse student body, with academically outstanding students from across all socio-economic backgrounds is an important goal for Corpus. We are immensely excited about this initiative, and proud to be the first Cambridge college to run a bridging course.

Corpus is creating 10 new places per year for students from under-represented backgrounds, starting with those applying in October 2019. These new places will be filled through the usual competitive admission process, and applicants will be selected in the usual way according to standard academic criteria. Successful applicants will be expected to meet the conditional offers made by the College. They will also be given the opportunity to attend a three-week bridging course at Corpus in September. The bridging course will offer a tailored and individualised programme of study, allowing students to consolidate core academic skills and get used to the supervision system.

The bridging course forms a key part of the College’s strategy: to ensure that, right from the beginning of their degree course, all students are given the opportunity to realise their full academic potential during their time in Cambridge. 

Who is eligible for the bridging course?

Applicants are eligible for one of these new places if they are UK home students from under-represented backgrounds: for example, coming from a lower-performing school, or living in an area of relative socio-economic deprivation, or having been in care (see Cambridge University’s contextual data system). Students from these backgrounds are a priority for our continuing commitment to widening access to a top-quality university education. Eligible students are drawn from those that apply to Corpus directly, as well as those who are taken from the intercollegiate admissions pool. Applicants to all subjects offered by Corpus are eligible for participation in the bridging course.

How do I apply for the bridging course?

There is no separate application process. Students simply apply to the College in the usual way, and will receive an invitation to enroll in the bridging course as part of their conditional offers.

What does the bridging course actually consist of?

The bridging course will focus on consolidating core academic skills necessary for success at university, for example essay writing, critical reading, or mathematical fluency. A significant number of hours are spent in one-on-one supervisions, covering skills directly relevant to the subject the student will be studying. Students will also be given the chance to visit libraries or practical labs. The course will run for three weeks from the beginning of September, finishing the week before the formal university term begins. Those on the course will have time to go back home for a short break before returning to Cambridge to start with their year group.

Will the bridging course cost any money?

No. All expenses such as food, travel and lodging will be covered by Corpus thanks to the generosity​ of the College's alumni and benefactors. Students will also receive a bursary to compensate for any losses in earnings over the month of September.