Super-curricular activities

Super-curricular activities are basically things you do beyond your curriculum, rather than outside your curriculum like extra-curricular activities. Here are a few great things I’ve done and you can do too, to boost your application, get prepared for uni or explore your subjects further! I’ve specifically focused on history and classics but these can apply to everyone.

  • Extra reading

This is the most common super-curricular activity, and can take many forms. Of course read outside of your textbook with more academic books, but it doesn’t have to be boring! There are lots of magazines dedicated towards subjects, like National Geographic or History Today or The BMJ. For History and Classics, you can also read historical fiction to get a feel for your time period (be careful of its accuracy though!) – I have lots to recommend if you’re interested.

  • Podcasts

you're dead to m

Podcasts are really easy to incorporate into your daily routine and there are lots available. A few recommendations I have are:

In Our Time – this has a wide variety of topics from History to English to Science and is very academic with a number of experts invited each episode

You’re Dead to Me – a wide variety of history topics with Greg Jenner (writer of Horrible Histories), a historian and a comedian to keep it entertaining.

Global News Podcast and Today Explained – it’s good to keep up with the news for any subject, and especially for politics.

  • MOOCs

future learn

This stands for Massive Online Open Course and there’s thousands of courses available for any subject you’re interested in. My favourite sites are future learn and open learn, and I’ve completed a range of courses like the British Empire, studying techniques and royal fashion history!

  • Essay competitions

Sadly I missed most of the deadlines this year, but there are lots of competitions with different titles you can pick from, mostly hosted by Oxford and Cambridge. I’d encourage everyone going into Year 12 next year to have a look (most start after Christmas so you have a lot of time!). There is a list of Oxford and Cambridge competitions here. I know there are other competitions too, like the Chemistry Olympiad which you can ask your college to enter in.

One more thing I’d like to share is the Cambridge super-curricular suggestions, a very long list of activities specific to your subject.

Thanks for reading, I hope this helps! What super-curricular activities have you done?

—ella ❤


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