At Runshaw, we want all our students to reach their full potential. For our most able students, this means developing their passion for particular subjects, achieving A* grades at A Level, then gaining a place at a prestigious university, on a graduate apprenticeship or in a competitive career.

Find out how we can help you #GetAhead by browsing our academies and societies below.

 Advanced Manufacturing Academy
Maths and Science students are invited to the manufacturing workshops in a bid to develop their understanding of applied design and engineering concepts through to final solution. Students will be given the opportunity to increase the breadth of their practical manufacturing, design engineering skills in addition to teamwork and project management. Our STEM programme runs over the one year with the aim of developing students’ problem solving skills in a variety of contexts and potentially unfamiliar areas. We participate in various national competitions including the CREST awards. View our courses.

 

Architecture Academy
Our Architecture Academy encompasses a range of extra-curricular activities for prospective university undergraduates across all of the associated areas within engineering design. The Academy comprises of a range of visual representation, photography and practical manufacture using a range of architectural techniques and processes within our specialist MA3DE design centre. The applied nature of the academy will provide our students with outstanding opportunities to achieve places to study on these prestigious courses within higher education. As a member of these societies, students will be provided with an up to date curriculum created by our experienced staff, alongside regular feedback from university lecturers, ensuring the highest standard of experience. This has included guest lecturers from a broad range of areas and the opportunity to take part in residential trips to key architectural design shows and national museums, as well as more local events such as visits to Manchester and Liverpool. View our courses.
Art Academy
Our Art Academy provides outstanding support for our many gifted and talented students to achieve the highest grades in all A Level Visual Arts subjects (Fine Art, 3D Design, Textiles, Graphics and Photography). Students are taught a breadth of skills in a wide range of media techniques and processes, to expand on the knowledge and experience gained on the A Level Art courses. Work produced in the Academy sessions is linked to current project work and themes and is assessed in course lessons so that students can develop their coursework journals. As well as enabling students to have an extensive range of work in their journals, their Academy work also enhances students’ university applications, with work being presented as an impressive portfolio ready for interview. View our courses.
Aspiring Teachers Academy
We are very proud of our ‘Aspiring Teachers @ Runshaw’ society. ‘AT @ Runshaw’ has been especially designed for 1st Year students who are keen to pursue a career in teaching. Sessions are delivered by a dynamic team of highly experienced teachers who are all passionate about teaching. We want to inspire and enthuse the next generation of teaching professionals through an exciting 6 week programme of taught sessions and work placement guidance that will boost students’ preparation for a career in teaching.
Business Academy
There are several, excellent Academies in the School of Business, one for every course. Through our Academies, we stretch and challenge students with an increased depth of subject knowledge to develop the advanced level analytical and evaluative skills necessary to perform at the highest academic level. Students enhance the key employability skills sought by employers including problem solving, decision making, collaborative working and interpersonal skills; skills essential for university success and working life. Many of our Academy students are inspired to study our subjects at prestigious universities and to secure employment with highly reputable, globally renowned businesses. View our courses.

 

Computing & ICT Academy
The Future Coders Academy within the School of IT and Computing is available for any students who wish to build upon their existing programming skills or compliment their learning experience. As members of this Academy, students have the opportunity to create their own video game using an industry standard programming language as well as taking part in frequent algorithm based programming challenges throughout the year. These challenges not only put our students’ programming ability to the test, but also provide them with a valued code bank to call upon in their future studies. Future Coders gives students the chance to develop valuable employability skills such as: code reading, co-operation, project planning and working to a deadline; skills particularly essential for those wishing to pursue a career in software development. Developing these key skills gives our students the vital edge in university applications and employment in a highly competitive field.

iDEA Award

The Inspiring Digital Enterprise Award, known as iDEA, is an international award winning programme that helps you develop and demonstrate your digital, enterprise and employability skills for free.

iDEA badges are short interactive online modules, created in consultation with industry experts that you can access for free. The more badges you collect, the more points you earn towards Awards. View our courses.

Criminology Academy
This exciting, weekly programme is ideal for students with a specific desire to embark on a future degree in Criminology and/or Criminal Justice at university. Alternatively, students would also find Criminology Academy highly relevant and subject enhancing if they are studying A Level Law, Sociology, History or Psychology in particular. The Criminology Academy will substantially equip students with the required academic tools to excel in their studies and beyond through the examination, application, analysis and evaluation of criminological theories, counter measures, case studies, statistics and journal articles in the specific context of violent crime. The main subject areas will include: Criminal Extremism, Knife Crime, Domestic Abuse, Gang Violence and Serial Murder. As members of the Criminology Academy our students will be involved in the preparation and management of Runshaw’s Annual Public Services and Social Sciences Conference which takes place at Chorley Town Hall during the month of October. Previous guests have included Colin Parry OBE, former MI5 Intelligence Officer Annie Machon and James Bulger’s mother Denise Fergus. Additionally, our academy members will be furnished with contemporary curriculum knowledge and a detailed insight into the workings of the Criminal Justice System from both an academic and vocational standpoint. View our courses.
English Academy
The Academy supports the next steps on a student’s English journey in a variety of ways. Visiting speakers offer new insights into selected texts and topics, plus advice and guidance on university courses and English-related careers. We also visit a number of university English departments, facilitating a taster of degree level English and the opportunities on offer. There is also the chance to give others a helping hand: Academy students can apply to mentor those less confident with the subject, either at A Level or GCSE, and to be English Ambassadors at our partner high school events. The School of English also runs a magazine – Runshaw Insider – and a creative writing group, providing students with a forum to showcase their talents, be they literary, journalistic or editorial. View our courses.
Electronics Academy
The Electronics Society is open to students who are studying Physics A Level and want to apply their knowledge and learn new practical skills through a range of activities including building and soldering circuits, and programming robots. Students will learn about, or bring their knowledge from, computer programming too. The group work and independent research involved are also great transferable employability skills.
Healthcare Academy
The Health Care Academy aims to help students develop and the necessary skills and knowledge for applying Allied Health Care professions. Sessions combine a range of hands on practical work, case study based learning, guest speakers and trips to experience health care in action. Students gain an insight in to careers such as midwifery, paramedics, nursing, radiography, speech and language therapy, biomedical sciences, social work whilst also developing first aid skills, basic British Sign Language, problem solving and many more skills essential to succeeding in this field. View our courses.
Humanities Academy
The Humanities Academy sessions allow students to extend their learning beyond the classroom and learn about topics of interest which may not be directly covered in the A Level specifications. Students have the opportunity to listen to university lecturers from prestigious universities such as Lancaster, Manchester and York; and are invited to attend university style seminar sessions focused around extra reading and work on examination technique, in order to reach the top grades. In the lunchtime Academy sessions, gifted and talented students work together to improve both their academic performance and their employability and interpersonal skills. Our Academy students thrive in such an academically challenging environment, with many choosing to study Humanities courses at degree level at some of the most prestigious universities Electronics Society is open to students who are studying Physics A Level and want to apply their knowledge and learn new practical skills through a range of activities including building and soldering circuits, and programming robots. Students will learn about, or bring their knowledge from, computer programming too. The group work and independent research involved are also great transferable employability skills. View our courses.
Sports Academy
Runshaw College sport involves working with AoC Sport, an organisation responsible for holding the largest annual sporting competition to take place in the UK. Students compete in a broad range of sports from the major team sports to individual sports such as athletics, golf, racket sports and tennis. Runshaw frequently win at regional level, our athletes represent the North West in an Olympic style National final involving over 3500 competitors at one of the country’s leading sports universities. If you enjoy working with highly motivated coaches and enjoy the latest training techniques, look no further than Runshaw Sports Academy. View our courses.

Law Academy
Our vibrant Law Academy runs weekly for students across all subjects and provides a unique opportunity to practice advanced legal skills such as mooting, mock trialling and mentoring. Experience of these advanced skills definitely enhances a student’s university application, CV and employability, leading to Runshaw’s fantastic record of students studying Law at all prestigious universities including Oxbridge. Law Academy also provides targeted revision and examination preparation sessions for those aiming for an A* grade and provides an opportunity to examine contemporary legal issues in more depth. Our Academy students tell us that they thoroughly enjoy working with a wider group of like-minded people and often form enduring friendships. View our courses.

Maths Academy
Runshaw’s highly popular Mathematics Academy ensures that our students have a range of opportunities to be involved in many areas of academic challenge and enrichment beyond the regular curriculum and classroom environment. In addition, Maths Academy students have the chance to enhance key employability skills such as interpersonal, communication and time management skills through our peer mentoring programme; offering much valued support to less confident maths students within college. Peer mentoring is a rewarding experience which also further embeds the mentors’ understanding of A Level Mathematics. View our courses.

Maths Awards 2022

Medical Academy
Runshaw Medical Society is a prestigious group aimed at prospective medics, dentists and veterinarians. Medical Society is an application only course. Enrolment begins at the beginning of year 12, with students selected on the basis of their GCSE grades, a written statement detailing any experiences they may already have gained and their reasons for wanting to be in the Medical Society. All students in Medical Society are put onto the mentorship programme, Meant for All, which is co-ordinated by our course leader and one of our past students, Holly Egan. This enables our students to work with current medical, dental and veterinary students across the UK to support them further with their ambitions.
Modern Foreign Languages Academy
The best MFL Academy is beyond the classroom, in the world where languages live. The very best way, then, to broaden the horizon of your language learning and develop your confidence in the target language, is to visit countries where your chosen language is spoken. Trips to France, Germany and Spain are offered as the main focus of our MFL Academy, and we strongly advise keen linguists to participate in these trips. To help you make the most of your time overseas, you will be given language tasks to complete, such as making vlogs and conducting video interviews with native speakers – all in the target language, of course. In addition to actually taking you abroad, we provide guidance on other ways to go the extra mile (or kilometre) beyond set tasks and homework, suggesting a wide range of foreign language websites, podcasts, novels, films, music and news channels for you to engage with and enjoy. In short, the more you involve and push yourself, and the more you practice your chosen foreign language, the more competent and confident you will become! View our courses.
Music Academy
Our Music Academy consists of weekly activities including concert band, jazz ensembles, brass ensemble, choir, folk group, big band, piano club, acoustic guitar ensemble and music theory classes, looking at both traditional and popular music theory. Prestigious institutions, such as The Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts (LIPA) and the Royal Northern College of Music are asking for a high level of music theory, in addition to A Levels in Music and/or Music Technology, which the Academy helps students to achieve. This extra music theory tuition also supports students with the academic demands of the A Level curriculum. In addition to weekly activities the Academy runs trips through the year, enabling students to experience rehearsal of various ensembles and orchestral performances of the highest quality. There are trips to higher education establishments and to orchestral concerts helping to give students high aspirations, and we regularly arrange performance tours within and outside the UK. View our courses.

 

Performing Arts Academy
Recognising the importance of providing performance opportunities for students with a talent in the performing arts, we offer a range of activities that will stretch all students, regardless of ability. For those who are interested in dance, we offer Extension12 – the Runshaw Dance Academy elite group. Extension12 has an international reputation for excellence, having competed in the Barcelona World Dance Grand Prix winning the Jazz and Modern prizes in recent years. Alongside Extension12, the Dance Academy offers a wide range of students the opportunity to develop technique in a variety of styles through workshops, performances and specialist classes. View our courses.

Legally Blonde Edit 4

Police Academy
Our exciting Police Society runs weekly for students across all subjects. The Society is open to anyone that is interested in policing or wishing to join the police. The Society provides knowledge on key legislation with the opportunity to gain practical skills via role plays covering lawful stop and searches and carrying out lawful arrests. You will learn how to communicate via a police radio and conduct person and vehicle check. During your time in the Society you will investigate case studies to give you some background knowledge into the history of policing. You will learn about the recruitment process and what will be expected of you, with the opportunity to practice the fitness test that you are required to pass upon entry into the police. On occasion, there will be guest speakers from the police or those who have fallen victim to crime and other organisations that work alongside the police. View our courses.
Revit Academy
Begin your exciting journey of Revit Academy and get first hand theoretical and practical experience of industry standard architectural and engineering software. This academy will give you the chance to embark on a creative journey in civil/architectural technology and allow students to explore architectural design through simple modular housing schemes, small offices designs and school design. Students will learn to understand the material make up of a building and the fundamentals behind regulations and standards. This knowledge will then feed into students’ design work of plans, sections, elevations, details, walkthroughs and final renders for a potential client that will be displayed in professional architectural portfolios (ready to take to potential future interviews). Furthermore, students will gain exciting experiences in drone technology, drone missions and flight control in order to conduct building and ground surveys. View our courses.

 

Science Arts Academy
Our renowned Science Academy encompasses a range of extra-curricular activity for prospective scientists across all of the scientific areas. The Academy comprises of the college Medical Society, Science Society and Oxbridge classes, all of which provide our students with outstanding opportunities to achieve places to study upon these prestigious courses within higher education. The societies provide our science students with the opportunity to work effectively both in teams and within independent settings, giving them additional chances to enhance their subject knowledge and gain experiences that will enable them to shine in their future career and endlessly boost their employability. View our courses.
Social Science Arts Academy

Psychology Academy combines a wide range of stimulating activities which allow students to extend their knowledge and skills beyond those developed in lessons, assisting their progression to prestigious universities and honing key employability skills. We provide short courses focusing on topics not covered by the syllabus; including educational, abnormal and sport psychology. Our students benefit from guest lectures by professionals who use psychology in their fields of work, such as medical detection dog training and clinical psychology specialists. We also provide exam focused skills sessions to support students aiming to achieve A* grades at the end of the course.

In our Sociology Academy, students examine a range of contemporary issues reflecting the fast-changing nature of modern society. Academy sessions vary between lectures, debates, guest speakers, university visits, workshops and research activities, based on students’ interests and future career aspirations. Sociology Academy students regularly organise charity events to support most vulnerable groups in society, thus enhancing their employability skills. Sociology Academy students develop analytical and evaluative skills beyond the syllabus requirement, giving them the all important “edge” over other students when applying to prestigious universities to study Sociology or related degrees. Indeed, the stand-out quality of our Sociology Academy students’ UCAS personal statements has been noted in feedback from prestigious universities. View our courses.

  • Enhancement & the Prestigious Universities Programme

    We currently have over 50 ex-Runshaw students studying at Oxford and Cambridge universities. The Oxbridge selection process is unique, so special assistance is provided using the expertise which Runshaw staff have built up through their relationships with colleagues at these universities.

    Practical help with applications, personal statements, aptitude tests and interviews is also given. Runshaw is the only state sector school or college to have produced TWO presidents of the Cambridge Students’ Union: Pav Akhtar and Laura Walsh. Both have visited the college to give guidance and information to prospective Oxbridge applicants.

    They are a real inspiration and show just what can be achieved by Runshaw A-Level students.

    Extended Project Qualification (EPQ)

    Students with a passion to study a particular topic in great detail can apply to take the Extended Project Qualification alongside their A-Level studies. This is equivalent to an A Level qualification and involves researching a topic of interest, preparing a report and presenting findings to a small audience. Each participant is assigned a mentor to guide them through the process of title development, research and write-up.

    Debating

    Each year, a group of our students form a team to enter the ‘Debating Matters’ competition. This is a national competition for sixth form students designed to promote a study of current contentious issues and promote clear arguments and debate.

    Work Experience

    We have a dedicated Work Placement Unit, which offers opportunities for work experience for all students, taking into account their course commitments. (For A Level students, this is usually in the week after their end of term in July.) We also support students who find their own work experience placements in their free time.

    Prestigious Universities Programme

    The PUP includes guest lectures on the requirements of prestigious universities, talks from visiting academics, contact with former Runshaw students who have been successful at prestigious universities, and the chance to make a residential visit to Oxford or Cambridge.

    The programme is designed to demystify the application process and to clarify what prestigious universities are looking for. Above all, it provides huge encouragement to students who are considering making an application to one of these universities.