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6Advance Programme

We offer a programme of academic academies designed to support high achievement and advanced skills for career development.

Each of these choices will provide participating students with excellent activities and skills-building to help them go beyond the exam curriculum and apply their knowledge and skills in challenging contexts.  In so doing, they will discover more about about a general subject or job area and will build up a great portfolio for applying to highly selective university or higher apprenticeship programmes.

Entry to each of the 6Advance academies is selective and will be based on an application made early in the autumn term.  The academies then run for the rest of the year (with a break for the summer exams).

Students who gain entry to one of our 6Advance academies are not also required to take a 6Xtra (general enrichment, sports/leisure and personal development programme).

All the academies run after core college hours and so do not affect the students’ main subject studies.

Alongside the academies element of 6Advance, students will benefit from expert advice, guidance and preparation to apply to top universities and the most selective apprenticeship programmes.  Blackpool Sixth has an excellent track record of helping our students gain places on the most sought-after university courses and training programmes.  See our success pages for some details of our 2017 leavers.

For more information about 6Advance or indeed any aspect of our provision, please contact us on

Which academy to choose?

6Advance Academies 2017-18

  • Computer Programming Club
  • Sixth Sense magazine
  • Debating Academy
  • History Society
  • Politics Society
  • Maths Academy
  • STEP Up (Preparation for maths STEP papers)
  • Dance Academy
  • Music Academy (Big band)
  • Medical Society
  • Science Academy
  • Clinical Skills Academy
  • Visual Design Academy
  • Duke of Edinburgh
  • Volunteering Academy
  • Careers Academy
  • Sports Academies
  • Student Council
  • Oxbridge Preparation

Computer Programming Club

Throughout the year we will be looking at different aspects of programming and different languages that can be used to create programs. Some of these will include: Python, Ruby, HTML, CSS and more.

Students will also get the opportunity to use Raspberry Pi and the GPIO to program with electronics components. Program code to create music in Sonic Pi and Hack into Minecraft.


Sixth Sense magazine

Your opportunity to join Sixth Sense, our award-winning magazine published entirely by the students, for the students. What can you bring to take it to the next level? We’re looking for journalists with ideas and passion- maybe a sense of humour. Can you hunt down your own story? Capture the moment with eye catching pictures? Maybe create the edgy look today’s students are looking for with your flair for graphics?  Or help to fund the venture with your zest for advertising and marketing? Tell us why you want to be a part of Sixth Sense and what you can bring to our pages. Former members have gone on to become professional photographers and journalists- even winning the prestigious Telegraph Media Group Prize for Journalism.

Debating Academy

Do you have an interest in current affairs? Politics? Jeremy Kyle?

Debating teaches you skills which can help you develop the self- confidence and mental agility needed to make your points and win arguments- even if you don’t agree with them yourself! As well as engaging with ‘the big questions’ we enjoy games, fun debates and practice for inter- school competitions.  Many of our former team members have continued to Oxbridge and/or Russell Group Universities. Are church schools a force for good? Should the UK open its borders to everyone seeking refuge? Should tattoos be compulsory? Discuss.

History Society

Throughout the year we will be investigating various sites of local history.  Each month will have a new theme such as Lancaster Castle, Blackpool, Poulton, researching family history.  There will also be an opportunity to gain work experience with the new Blackpool Museum project.

Politics Society

For those interested in political debate and the history which underpins modern day politics.

Throughout the year students will run the politics twitter page, have the opportunity to attend the Model United Nations weekend and organise themselves events such as visits to college by local MPs. Members will also be able to present on issues that interest them.

Mathematics Academy

A session for students wanting to stretch themselves beyond A level mathematics, exploring problem solving within mathematics. Throughout the year students will work on a variety of challenges to broaden their mathematical knowledge and understanding. Ideal for anyone with a passion for mathematics. We will compete in various challenges such as UKMT, UKMT group challenge and the Mathsbombe competition.


A session designed to stretch those A2 students with a love of mathematics. These sessions build on the mathematics learnt in the first year of A level mathematics. Students are offered support in problem solving alongside the teaching of different techniques to tackle difficult problems.

Ideal for those students wanting to study mathematics at university. A must for those applying for a university which has entrance examinations. These session will allow you to be prepared for university interviews and to sit the MAT, TMUA and STEP entrance exams.

Dance Academy

An academy for gifted and talented dancers who may wish to pursue a career in dance. The academy will prepare students for future auditions and interviews. The dance academy aims to challenge dancers and push them to further their dance technique and performance skills. The dancers from dance academy will have the opportunity to perform in the college musical as well as other public performances, performing in various styles of dance.

Music Academy (Big Band)

An academy for students wanting to develop their musicianship in key instruments in a classic genre.

Medical Society

Students will explore all aspects of applying for a Medicine degree to become a doctor (NB not suitable for those interested in other healthcare professions e.g. nursing, midwifery, physiotherapy, radiology). Students will write a brief letter of application and we will also consider their GCSE profile, as many medical schools select on this basis. Those students selected will first consider the skills and characteristics of good doctors before drawing up an action plan in terms of their skill development and work experience, including hospital placements. There will be guest speakers from the hospital, universities and medical students. Students will be given support with obtaining their work experience placements and voluntary work, personal statement writing, medical school choices, the UKCAT and mock interviews. They will also explore some areas of Biology beyond the specification including an optional rat dissection to study mammalian anatomy and the physiology of the digestive, reproductive and urinary systems. There will also be opportunities to try problem-based learning by diagnosing some patient case studies and participate in multiple-mini mock interviews. Participation at this academy is essential for any student who is committed to a career in Medicine!

Science Academy

Science academy is an opportunity for you to go beyond the constraints of the syllabus and look at science in a new light. There will be chance to look at how science is used in real life, from polymers to slime, dyes and explosives, fuels for the future and the romance of valentine’s day, making bath bombs and perfumes. You will also be offered the opportunity to complete a British Science association CREST award and we hope there are several trips to enthuse and excite the mad scientists amongst us!

Clinical Skills Academy

Clinical skills is aimed at students who want to go into a career in health care. Clinical Skills offers students the opportunity to learn:

  • Hygiene and Infection Control Procedures
  • How to monitor and record blood pressure, O2 sats, pulse, temperature and respiration rate
  • How to interact effectively with patients
  • Current issues in healthcare
  • Clinical Skills offers students the opportunity to:
  • Visit universities to experience the simulated wards
  • Experience guest speakers from a variety of Health Care professions
  • Participate in additional courses eg Open University, First Aid

Visual Design Academy

This is aimed at students studying graphics, photography and/or fashion. Students will support the department with promotions and designs. They will become confident in future Visual Art careers and portfolio building for these careers. Tackling Live briefs, working with the community and going the creative extra mile is expected.

Visual Design Academy

This is aimed at students studying art, art combined studies and/or textiles. Students will support the department with promotions and designs. They will become confident in future Visual Art careers and portfolio building for these careers. Tackling Live briefs, working with the community and going the creative extra mile is expected.

Duke of Edinburgh

All students who participate with us embark straight into the Gold Award.  Student’s who have never before done DofE, are entered as ‘Direct Gold’ whereas those that have already achieved their Silver award will be entered as standard Gold.  The only difference is that ‘Direct Gold’ participants need to do an extra six months on one of their sections.

There are 5 sections to complete at Gold: Volunteering, Skill, Physical, Expedition and Residential.

More info:

Volunteering academy

The academy is for students who want to gain experience whilst helping others. There will be scheduled talks with providers, event planning, fund raising activities and the opportunity to mentor other students. Students will also be involved in organising and hosting volunteer week each June with a celebration to finish.  (student awards evening-tbc).

Careers Academy

This is aimed at students studying one or more subjects in the BSIT department, specifically students who want to gain knowledge and experience about future careers.

Students will be interviewed to gain a place on the programme. All successful students will be assigned a mentor and work with them to enhance their skills. Students will also take part in a variety of masterclasses and visits and complete internships within a field of their choice.

Oxbridge preparation