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Army College

There are two college options for students looking to join the Army. For future Officers, there's Welbeck, the Defence Sixth Form College based in Leicestershire; and for Regular Soldiers, the Army Foundation College, Harrogate is an entry-level college for Junior Soldiers.

Hear from current students at Welbeck Defence Sixth Form College, and find out what it's really like to study as an Army student.

You can apply to join Welbeck from September 2015, to start in September 2016. You'll need to in line for at least an A and a B in maths and physics / dual award science at GSCE (or equivalent), plus a C or above in English language.

AFC Harrogate

On parade at Harrogate

AFC Harrogate trains young people to become Junior Soldiers. They learn the qualities of being a soldier, as well as fieldcraft and survival skills.

Welbeck DSFC

Relaxing during exercises

Welbeck is the services’ residential sixth form college for officer applicants who wish to join the Royal Navy, Army, Royal Air Force or MOD Civil Service.

As part of your education, you'll learn all the qualities of being a soldier, as well as field craft, survival skills and how to handle a weapon.
Plus you'll learn skills and gain civilian qualifications, have the chance to travel, play sports and get fit and make mates for life.

You need to be between 16 years and 17 years and 5 months when you start training.

Welbeck Defence Sixth Form

Welbeck, near Loughborough, is the MoD's very modern residential sixth form college that offers a two-year A level education combined with personal development and physical training. It's ranked amongst the top sixth-form colleges in the league tables. Students study three subjects; maths being compulsory, physics being highly recommended, the last chosen from 11 further subjects.
The Army is allocated 90 places a year. After Welbeck, most students are sponsored to one of eight universities on a technical bursary before joining Sandhurst to prepare for a career as a Regular Officer in one of the Army's technical corps.

How to apply

To apply to either Harrogate or Welbeck you will need to complete your application online.


  • You cannot apply for the Army until you are 15 years and 7 months.
  • Students must be aged between 16 years and 17 years and 5 months when they start training
  • This is Army Phase 1 training and you become a member of the Army from your arrival at the college. There isn’t an option to do the course and decide to ‘join the Army later’, however, if the Army isn't for you, you can leave the course at any point
  • There are two intakes a year to the college, March and September


  • To study for A Levels at Welbeck, you'll need to meet the entry criteria, which can be found on the Welbeck website
  • The College selects approximately 185 students each year. All of the students join us in the first year of their A-Level studies
  • To join the September 2016 intake, you will need to apply by 8 January 2016 


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