DCB Roadmap to University

Dulwich College Beijing

At DCB, our students always come first. Drawing upon 400 years of excellence and British heritage from Dulwich College in London, Dulwich College Beijing is an academically rigorous institution that encourages every child to embrace their uniqueness, offer numerous opportunities for creativity, and celebrate their diversity. From DUCKS to Senior School, our students are guided by our values to become well-rounded individuals who can Live Worldwise, emboldened to confidently pursue their passions and utilise their skills to make a positive difference in the world – qualities essential for their higher education and future careers, and life.

To help our families better understand the journey to university and beyond, we have the DCB Roadmap to University. 

DCB Roadmap to University DCB Roadmap to University

Crafted by our DCB University and Careers Counselling(UCC) department, this roadmap serves as our community’s visual guide of our students’ journey from preschool to university and our UCC’s role in it, ensuring that every student and parent understands the path ahead. 


Journey to Pre-university


From DUCKS to Year 9, we foster academic potential while nurturing a culture of learning through play, sparking a passion for discovery. We empower our students with the tools to thrive in their diverse interests, free from the constraints of the fear of failure, all while grounded in our Dulwich Values. Our vibrant community is a cornerstone of support for our students' endeavours – from teachers organising new events to cater to shared interests to others dedicating years to crafting courses that prepare our students for the future. Additionally, through initiatives like Parent Masterclass and partnerships facilitated by our dedicated parents, who generously volunteer their time and expertise, we unlock endless opportunities for our students' growth and development."

Then, from Year 10, our university counsellors start off the process by meeting the students as a year group, explaining their roles in guiding them towards their best-fit universities and becoming the bridges to their universities of choice, and then more frequent one-on-one sessions in the succeeding years. Our counsellors support our students in numerous ways, including:

  • offering students personalised guidance in mapping out their university journey and ensuring individual pathway development that’s the best fit for students and their families,
  • ensuring that students have a better understanding of the universities that they show interest in (an understanding that goes beyond university rankings),
  • finding opportunities for students to learn more about these universities through university fairs, on-campus university talks and even college visits,
  • explaining the do’s and don’ts during these important years (such as focusing on quality rather than quantity for extracurricular involvement),
  • helping them brainstorm their college essays
  • and more.

As part of a family of schools with schools around the world, our university counsellors can also tap into our shared resources and expertise found across our EiM family of schools and play a big role in being our students’ bridges to the universities around the world. This is in line with our promise to create opportunities that transcend geography and allow our students to find the institution that best fits them. 


Parent community

At DCB, parent involvement is crucial to the success of our students. Our three schools regularly conduct Parent Academies on a wide variety of subjects to support parents and help them better engage with their children’s learning and personal growth, and partnerships such as Tooled Up Education offer parents access to evidence-based advice.     

During a recent presentation to parents, Ms Flora Meng, one of our University and Careers Counsellors, emphasized the significance of helping their children but ‘without taking the steering wheel.’ “We need to support our students and let them take ownership of their own applications. As parents, let’s listen to the students with interest and curiosity and let them take the driver’s seat.”  

To help parents better see through the air of mystery that often clouds university applications, we hold related talks throughout the academic calendar for parents across all school groups. This allows parents to not only hear from the experts but also to ask their questions and help them understand the university application journey better. Some examples include:

Visits of two UCC counsellors from our network of schools during EiM UCC Counsellor Exchange Program



“When it comes to university applications, most students show strong academic results,” Dr Gavin Hornbuckle, our Head of University Counselling and Careers, explained. “The question is how do you stand out.” 

He also added how a student’s individuality is important for universities. “With so many applications, universities can only look at so many. So naturally they’ll seek students who can make meaningful contributions to their communities.”
Ms Stephanie Zhang, another University and Careers Counsellor, shared how being part of a family of schools offers an abundance of resources and support from the entire group of schools that span continents. “We want your children to take advantage of that and all the expertise our network offers.”

Ms. Meng also advises parents against constant reminders and suggests being a supportive listener instead. “Instead of persistent prodding, help them come up with a system that can help them stay organised.”


Live Worldwise

As Dr Hornbuckle shared in his interview, getting into university shouldn’t be a competition with the person you’ve known for years, but against yourself. “It's not about competing against the students sitting next to you here at DCB; it's about competing against yourself to be the best version of yourself that you can be… (Universities will also look at) how students develop those qualities in themselves as they go through their CVs and how they bring it out in their essays.” 

What is a successful university application, ‘best fit’, and how can parents support their children during this period? Dr Hornbuckle shares more in his interview.

As Anthony Coles, our Head of College, said to last year’s graduating batch, their goal should be to use their lives and talents as vehicles for the creation of a better world.

“You now have a Dulwich education under your belt. Our hope is you will use it to make a positive difference to people, society and the planet. Our collective wish for each of you is for you to be a good person, to care about others, and to carry yourself well. Continue to think of others, maintain friendships and make more.”