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King's Scholarships

Eton College has up to 70 King’s Scholars (usually 14 each year) who board in College, the house of the scholars, under the care of their House Master, the Master-in-College, and his pastoral team. Every boy has his own study-bedroom, and apart from a few ceremonial differences, his life at Eton is very similar to that of boys in other houses.

Approximately fourteen scholarships are awarded annually, to which no statutory fee are attached. The scholarships are usually tenable for five years.

The examinations for potential scholars are held at Eton in late April and/or early May for entry in September. Candidates must either be aged 13 on Monday 1 September of the year of entry or have turned 14 during August that year, where Eton has previously agreed that the boy may defer his entry by a year due to an August birthday. Applications must be returned to Admissions by the date shown in the current Prospectus: a candidate does not need to be registered in order to apply.  The application form is relevant only for the current year of entry, as shown on the website.

Admissions offer some open afternoons for boys in Year 8 to give potential candidates and their parents the opportunity to learn about the College house environment and details of the King’s Scholarship examinations.

Since the King’s Scholarship examination is designed to find the most able candidates, it is intentionally very demanding. In most papers of the examination there is a wide range of questions, so that any clever boy has the opportunity to prove his capability; the examiners are keen to reward boys who show real ability, even if in only a limited field. Every candidate must take the four compulsory papers (English, mathematics A, science, and general I) and at least three of the optional papers (a tripartite paper with questions on history, geography and divinity; French; Latin; Greek; mathematics B; general II). The examiners assess a candidate on his performance in the four compulsory papers and his best three optional papers.

Boys already holding a conditional place who do not achieve a place in College may do well enough in the King’s Scholarship examination to be exempted from the Common Entrance examination as a final qualification for entry, but this is not automatic. A boy’s present Head Teacher is the key adviser on whether an attempt at a scholarship is appropriate as a means of entry, in preference to Common Entrance, on the basis of his abilities.

The scholarship prospectus and application documents may be downloaded here. Alternatively, an email request can be made to Admissions.

Copies of past King's Scholarship papers are available here.