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A Guide to Apply to a UK School

Application Procedures

The most common entry ages for independent schools in the UK are 11, 13, and 16 years old. Most schools start accepting applications for the following year in September. However, some top schools like Tonbridge and Harrow may require students to apply up to 3 years in advance. Parents do, therefore, need to take careful note of the registration deadlines for their preferred schools. The progress of school applications in the UK is quite diverse and depends on the specific school and application procedures. However It can generally be divided into five major steps:

Step by Step Guide


School Research and Selection

First, parents and students need to choose the UK schools they are interested in applying to. You can find information about our partner schools on our website. 
You should research the school's ranking, programs, and geographical location. Students also need to understand the admission requirements of their chosen schools which may include academic grades, language requirements, and other specific criteria.

Academic Asia Screening Test

To help you quickly understand your child's ability, we offer a free test Academic Asia Screening Test for every students. The test is designed by our team who are extremely familiar with the UK education entry exam. It consists of a written examination and an oral interview. Once the tests are completed, our team will assess and grade them. This service is completely free of charge.

The test is designed by our team who are extremely familiar with the UK education entry exam. It consists of a written examination and an oral interview.
Our Consultants will then provide immediate feedback to you and your child and make comprehensive preparations for their UK school applications.



Submit Application / Admission

Students need to submit relevant application materials such as transcripts, recommendation letters, personal statements, etc. Officially translated documents are usually required. 
Some schools may need to conduct a pre-screening test before the Entry Exam.


School Pre-test, Exams and Interviews

Schools may require applicants to participate in interviews. These can be conducted through video interviews or face-to-face interviews to assess the students' abilities and suitability. Exams are mostly held between September and November. 

Exams usually include Verbal and Non-Verbal Reasoning which often pose challenges for students - the reason being that it involves visual recognition and logical thinking which is very different from the Hong Kong education system. 

Academic Asia provides interview and pre-test intensive courses for students to help them prepare for the exams and interviews. All courses are designed by our Head of Education, Mr. Giles Delaney, who was the Headmaster of St John's Beaumont Preparatory School in the UK for nearly 16 years. Find out more.


School assessments include : interview + entrance exam


  • Interview : face to face / online 
  • Entrance Exam for the Lower Forms may include: 
  • English, Mathematics, Reasoning (Verbal and Non-Verbal), Science 
  • Entrance Exam for the Sixth Form may include: English, Mathematics, Reasoning (Verbal and Non-Verbal) 
    together with subject papers - based on students' A level or IBDP subject choice

Receive Admission Notification & Confirm Offer

If the application is successful, students will receive an admission notification from the school, usually around the end of the year. 
Parents and students can review the offers received and then accept the offer from their preferred school. 
Usually, you will also need to pay a deposit to confirm your acceptance.


Pre-Departure Preparation

Academic Asia provides a Pre-Departure Briefing for all our students every year. During the event, we will provide all necessary information to our parents and students before they fly to the UK. We aim to provide parents with peace of mind and ensure that they have the necessary information and assistance to support their child's educational journey in the UK.


Students are requested to apply for a Student Visa. (*British Citizens and BNO visa holders do not require a Student Visa.) 
Parents should also arrange a Tuberculosis (TB) Screening Test for the student. After the test, the doctor will issue a Tuberculosis Test Certificate. 
After completing the online application, students are required to go to the Visa Application Centre in person to complete the procedure, they will be asked for a photo and fingerprint.


According to UK legislation and boarding schools, overseas students will be requested to arrange a guardian while they are in the UK. Parents may consider using guardianship agencies if they do not have relatives or friends who can act as their children’s guardian.


Parents should book flight tickets as soon as possible and also contact the school or guardianship company to arrange the airport pickup for the student in advance.

Talk to Our UK Education Consultant

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