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The Basil Paterson Festival Course
Our unique festival course, which runs alongside the world famous International Edinburgh Festival and Fringe allows students to immerse themselves in the spirit of the world renowned arts festival whilst improving their English. With this specially designed course, you can study English with the world's largest arts festival right on your doorstep! August is one of the best times of year to be in Edinburgh as the city comes alive with music, street performers and theatre for all ages! 

The course has been specially designed with our commitment to academic excellence at the forefront of the course plan. The festival will be incorporated into the classes with students reviewing shows, making their own festival guides and creating their own performances. 

During August our Social & Cultural programme is festival orientated. There are activities every afternoon and evening of the week which include tickets different festival venues all across Edinburgh. Other activities include Scottish country dancing, ghost tours, sport, museum visits, pub evenings and Scottish whisky tasting! 

Festival Course Timetable

(25 hours per week)


  08.45 - 09.00 Opening Plenary
  09.00 – 10.00 Spoken Performance Workshop
  10.00 – 10.15 MORNING BREAK
  10.15 – 11.15 Language Focus
  11.15 – 11.30 MORNING BREAK
  11.30 – 12.30 Language  Practice
  12.30 – 13.30 LUNCH BREAK
  13.30 – 14.30 Skills Focus
  14.30 – 14.45 AFTERNOON BREAK
  14.45 – 15.45

 Festival Project Workshop      

  15.45 - 16.00 Closing Plenary

At a glance

  • The festival course will run from the 7 - 25th August
  • It is possible to start any Monday in August
  • Lessons are festival themed
  • 25 hours per week of intensive tuition
  • Fees include access to some social programme activities 
  • Activities are every afternoon and every evening with outings to all kinds of festival shows and performances
  • During August the population of Edinburgh swells to over 1 million making it temporarily the UK's second largest city

Festival Highlights 


Edinburgh Military Tattoo: Don't miss this year's Military Tattoo set against the stunning backdrop of Edinburgh Castle. This event sells out every year - luckily we buy our tickets early for Festival Course students!

Edinburgh Book Festival:  Just a 2 minute walk from the college, the Edinburgh International Book Festival is the largest in the world, with hundreds of events taking place during August. 

Princes Street Gardens: The famous gardens which sit below Edinburgh Castle are transformed in the summertime with workshops, stalls and musical performances. 

Edinburgh Festival Fireworks: The Edinburgh Festival goes out each year with literally many, very large bangs in its annual 45-minute Festival Fireworks concert!