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Universities and Careers

Universities and Careers

When a boy first arrives at Radley, the last thing on his mind will be 'what happens next', but to some extent the path he will take begins on day one.

The key thing through the lower school years is to put possibilities his way and we do this through a wide range of talks, lectures and experiences that will help him find his passion. Hopefully, when the time comes to choose his A levels he has an idea as to what sort of area he may be heading. From then on the advice becomes more specialised as he selects his university course and starts to build up the contacts and work experience that are so essential as he prepares for life beyond Radley.


The Director of University Entrance, working with experienced and committed colleagues, leads Common Room in offering a clear introduction to the world of Higher Education. A wealth of information and advice is available, but there is no substitute for careful research. The Universities Office (adjacent to the Coffee Shop) is perfectly situated to allow boys and visiting parents to call in and discuss any aspect of their HE application strategy.

Whilst some sixth-formers have definite plans, most need guidance. Our guiding principle is that each boy must decide for himself which courses and institutions are most suitable for him: our role is to help them to arm themselves with good quality information that is discovered through personal research.

In addition to providing comprehensive guidance through the process of applying to UK universities through UCAS, Radley also advises boys applying to overseas destinations. We have long-standing arrangements with outside consultants in this area, as well as significant in-house expertise. The variety of destinations is such that boys are supervised on a case-by-case basis and our successes in this area are outlined in the University Destinations document below.

Applying to university has become more and more competitive and even the best candidates may receive disappointments and rejections. It is, through careful preparation and groundwork that chances of success are raised. On this page are three short videos, the first explains the UCAS process, the second is from High Fliers Graduate Research about the job market and the third explains how Radley prepares Sixth Form boys for Oxbridge.  

UCAS - Update for 6.1 boys and parents - May 2020

High Fliers Graduate Research


Please follow the link below for information about higher education choices.

2019 to 2020 Leavers' Destinations | PDF (47KB)

Higher Education Guide

Covid Context for Universities

Please follow the video link below for information from former pupils about the Oxbridge application process and work culture at Radley.



The Careers Department aims to inspire students at Radley to think about their lives beyond A levels through a range of activities, opportunities and information. 

The Careers programme starts in the Shell year and continues to support boys after they have left Radley. In the Lower School, boys are introduced to business and carry out careers profiling with Futurewise. They are introduced to the CV in the Removes and are expected to think about their skills and achievements as well as their academic prowess. Many parents choose for their boys to undergo more detailed careers profiling in the Fifth year. These boys receive a comprehensive report and discuss their plans in the Fifth and 6.1 year with a professional adviser. It is expected that the Fifths will start work experience during their holidays and will carry out as much as possible during the Sixth form.

The Sixth form allows further careers exploration with talks at College, visits to companies and an annual careers conference held in the summer term. The boys receive the latest graduate employment trends and the majority choose to undergo interview practice.

The Medical Society nurtures our potential medics and vets through a comprehensive programme. An independent careers adviser is available for all boys on a Wednesday afternoon. The Careers Library stocks a number of books, magazines, and prospectuses on careers and gap year opportunities. There are also materials to help study skills, decision making, self-awareness, CV completion and interview techniques. Boys can also follow our Twitter feed or Facebook page to keep up-to-date with the latest information and opportunities.

Dan Pullen
Dan Pullen
Physics Teacher, Head of Careers
As well as being the Director of Careers, I also teach Physics. I studied Engineering at Durham University before embarking on a ten year stint in the Royal Engineers with tours to Bosnia, Falkland Islands and Northern Ireland. My last two years was spent conducting trials on mines and explosives for QinetiQ. I started teaching Physics at Cranleigh School in 2003, arriving at Radley in 2006. I enjoy sport and the outdoors; I coach rugby, hockey and tennis and am a member of the CCF and support D of E. I am married to Lil: we have three children, Amy, Ned and Jemima.
James Sheldrake
James Sheldrake
English Teacher, Director of University Entrance, C Social Sub-Tutor
After English degrees at Warwick and Oxford, I joined the London freelance scramble for a couple of years, mostly writing and broadcasting about Shakespeare. I then did a year of teaching at a London day school. I joined Radley in September 2016. Since then, I have thrown myself into as much of school life as possible. Whether teaching English, directing a play, supervising squash practice or simply turning up to events, boarding affords dons and boys unrivalled opportunities for fulfilling and productive relationships. I have also been the C Social Sub-Tutor since September 2017. Living in Social gives one a unique opportunity to find out what makes the boys and the school tick. Amy and I are joined in Social by our labradoodle Earnest. Radley has a superb Common Room and we have been enthusiastically welcomed to the community from Day One. As the Director of University Entrance, I lead dons in helping boys find destinations that build on the academic and personal development they have enjoyed here.