Academic Enrichment Programme

Summer2The Academic Enrichment Programme is an immersive five day residential that gives students an insight into the full university experience, including taster lectures on a range of academic subjects, living in accommodation and new social experiences.

This programme is only available to students who live inside the Greater West Midlands region and are currently in Year 12. Applications for the Academic Enrichment Programme 2021 will open in early 2021. Register your interest in the programme and we will email you to let you know when 2021 applications are open.

Register your interest now

About the Academic Enrichment Programme

Each student will experience first-hand what life studying and living at a research-led university is like by staying for five days and four nights in the University halls of residence and attending academic sessions in an area of their interest. During the evenings, students will be able to take part in social activities and will also have the opportunity to take a tour of Birmingham. Throughout the residential, there will be a team of current undergraduate student ambassadors on hand to support within a relevant academic stream to support and advice.  

In the autumn term, students will attend the first of two study support sessions, the date and content of which will be confirmed nearer the time. During Year 13, students will also be paired up with a current undergraduate from the University and will have further support through e-mentoring on a weekly basis.

There are four broad streams that students can choose from. The stream must be related to their current studies or relevant to the degree programme they wish to study. The academic streams will include some of the following areas, but these are all subject to availability of academic staff:

  • Humanities and Social Sciences – covering Geography, English, History, Law, Politics, Social Policy, Public Policy, Social Work, Sociology, Theology, Psychology
  • Business – Accounting, Economics, Business, International Studies
  • Physical Sciences – Engineering, Computer Science, Physics, Maths, Chemistry
  • Biological and Health Sciences – Physiotherapy, Medicine, Dentistry, Nursing, Biology, Biomedical Material Science

In addition to academic lectures and seminars, there are also contributions from external organisations.

Why take part?

Students who successfully complete the Academic Enrichment Programme and apply to the University of Birmingham will receive special consideration from admissions tutors. If their application is successful, they will receive two offers from the University of Birmingham, the standard offer and a Pathways to Birmingham offer. The Pathways to Birmingham offer is typically a two grade reduction (e.g. BBB rather than AAB). 

As well as the Pathways to Birmingham offer, students will also be eligible for financial support.

Students who are successful in gaining a place on this programme will benefit from the following:

  • First-hand experience of academic learning at a research-led institution
  • Support with raising students’ academic grades through two study skills sessions in Year 13
  • Experience of living in university accommodation and socialising with like-minded students
  • Support from current undergraduates via e-mentoring
  • Support with their decision making process
  • An invitation to attend a celebration event that recognises the hard work of all the participants on the programme

Eligibility criteria

The Academic Enrichment Programme is suitable for Year 12 students who have a strong commitment to study at the University of Birmingham and who are studying A Level, IB or a relevant BTEC course. Applications are open to students who meet the Pathways to Birmingham criteria. Check to see if you are eligible.

Students applying to the Academic Enrichment Programme must have achieved the minimum academic requirements for their chosen university course at GCSE - please check the University of Birmingham course pages for more information. Medicine and Dentistry applicants have separate academic criteria which you can view on our Pathways pages.

Due to the competitive nature of this programme, applications will be selected based not only on the socio-economic criteria as listed for the Pathways to Birmingham Programmes, but also on achieved grades at GCSE and predicted/target grades at post-16 level.

How much does it cost?

The costs of the Academic Enrichment Programme are completely covered by the University. This includes travel to and from the University, accommodation, all meals during the residential element, and all social activities.

The University of Birmingham would like to thank the Sir Josiah Mason Trust for their generous contribution in supporting the students on the Academic Enrichment Programme for the next three years. The support of the Sir Josiah Mason Trust has allowed more students to benefit from the programme and will help to realise their educational and career aspirations.

How to apply

Applications for the Academic Enrichment Programme 2021 will open in early 2021. 

Register your interest in the programme and we will email you to let you know when 2021 applications are open.

Register your interest now

Contact us

If you have any questions about the Academic Enrichment Programme, please email

Watch our video to learn more about the Academic Enrichment Programme

Students share their experience on the Academic Enrichment Programme