The Brilliant Club for schools

Our Programme Team is made up of full-time employees who are either qualified teachers or PhD graduates. They work closely with our PhD tutors to develop programmes that embody the following key principles:

A core focus on academic development

Targeting pupils who will benefit the most

The Scholars Programme supports pupils to develop the knowledge, skills and ambition needed to progress to a highly-selective university. The programme focuses on academic development through university trips, in-school tutorials and challenging independent assignments.

We work with schools to ensure that all pupils who take part in our programmes have demonstrated the potential to secure a place at a highly-selective university and/or will gain significant benefit that would not otherwise have been available.

Early and sustained intervention

Age-appropriate support

We begin working with pupils at Key Stage 2 and continue to support their academic development throughout their school careers and path to university. New pupils are able to join our programmes at each key stage.

Our programmes combine academic development with information, advice and guidance to support university choices. This includes sessions delivered by our university partners and access to our online virtual learning environment.


Our programmes

The Scholars Programme

"Pupils are given a tour of a uni campus, meet with staff and attend a graduation ceremony"

The Scholars Programme is designed to emulate the learning that students experience at highly-selective universities. We recruit, train and place doctoral and postdoctoral researchers in schools to deliver programmes of university-style tutorials, which are supplemented by two university trips and a range of other opportunities.

  1. Programmes begin with a Launch Trip at one of our partner universities, where pupils meet their PhD tutor and take part in a carousel of learning activities, including the first tutorial.
  2. For the next four weeks, PhD tutors will spend half a day a week in school delivering two tutorials on each visit, working with two groups of six pupils. The length of tutorials and the size of groups vary depending on the key stage, but never exceed six pupils.
  3. Pupils are required to undertake weekly reading and writing assignments that lead to the completion of an extended assignment which the PhD tutors then mark thoroughly.
  4. The programme finishes with another university trip, where pupils are given a tour of the campus, meet with outreach staff, receive feedback on their assignments and then attend a graduation ceremony.

We are flexible to the needs of schools, but our programmes typically take place at the following times:

Key Stage 2 and Key Stage 3 Р October to January

Key Stage 4 – February to May

Key Stage 5 – June to September.

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Researchers in Schools

"An innovative teacher training programme that recruits PhD graduates to teach in state secondary schools"

The Researchers in Schools Programme offers a bespoke route for PhD graduates to enter the teaching profession as full-time classroom teachers. Working in partnership with other providers, we offer a programme of initial teacher training and on-going professional development that equips participants to utilise their academic expertise to the benefit of pupils, schools and universities. Read more about Researchers in Schools here.

Read our info for schools brochure

We work with state schools throughout the country and with pupils aged 10 to 18. Please take a look at our Information for schools brochure for more information about the Scholars Programme for your school.