Art and Design is both a form of communication and a means of expression of ideas and feelings. It forms a language which complements those of the literary, mathematical, scientific and factually based subjects.
Art and Design, through the opportunities it provides for personal expression, encourages imagination, sensitivity, conceptual thinking, powers of observation and analytical and problem solving abilities. Study of the subject will lead to a fuller understanding of Art and Design and will widen cultural horizons and understanding. The A level is a demanding course and students need to be well organised and motivated to work with initiative and independence.
The course is suitable for:
- students who wish to undertake further studies in art, craft and design at a higher level;
- students who are looking to take up careers for which an art background is relevant; e.g. publishing, architecture, advertising, museum/gallery work;
students who have an interest and aptitude for the subject but who do not intend to pursue it beyond AS/A Level.
The entry requirement for AS/A Level Art are an aptitude for, and interest in, the subject, and a Grade B in GCSE Art.
A level Art and Design – AQA
Components for AS
Component 1 – Non-exam assessment. (60% AS)
Component 2 – Externally set assignment. (40% AS)
Components for A2:
Component 3 – Non-exam assessment.
Component 4 – Externally set assignment. (40% A)
AS results do not count towards A-level.
View our Survival Guide to Art created by our sixth form students below
The AS Components are:
Component 1: Portfolio.
The aim of this component is to lay the foundations for future developments. You will work from a theme and spend the first 6 weeks investigating it.
The work produced in this time will include: drawings in a variety of media and techniques; use of a digital camera and computer software to manipulate images; research.
You will spend the next 12 weeks developing your research into one or several finished outcomes using two or more media.
Your portfolio work will be the collection of work produced in this time and will include: initial drawings and photographs; critical and contextual material related to your theme; development of ideas; experiments with materials and techniques using at least 2 media and finished piece(s).
Component 2: Externally set assignment.
You will be given a choice of themes, set by the exam board, from which you will choose just one. You will need to demonstrate the knowledge and skills you have acquired during the projects in component 1 to create a personal and original outcome.
This component includes 5 hours of controlled assessment in which you will produce developmental work towards a final piece that is produced after controlled time.
The work you hand in should include: investigation of the theme; drawings and research; research into appropriate artists; development of ideas and a final piece.
The A2 Components are:
Component 3: Personal Investigation.
This component is in two parts:
(i) A practical project in which you are expected to develop a personal investigation based on a theme, idea, issue related to Art and Design which will result in a finished piece.
(ii) A Personal Study of approximately 2000 words which is linked to and supports your chosen focus of study.
The two parts are assessed as a whole. Your work will include: initial drawings and photographs; critical and contextual material related to your theme; development of ideas; experiments with materials and techniques; finished piece(s) using at least 2 media; a written study of approx. 2000 words.
Component 4: Externally Set Assignment
You will be given a choice of themes set by the exam board, from which you will choose just one. You will need to demonstrate
in-depth knowledge and a high level of technical skills and creativity when producing your personal and original outcome.
This component includes 15 hours of controlled assessment in which you produce your final piece for this component.
The work you hand in should include: experiments with materials and techniques; drawings and investigations relevant to your idea; understanding of the work of appropriate artists; development of ideas; a final piece.
We organise a gallery or stately home visit in the Autumn Term. It is also possible that additional visits will be arranged to appropriate exhibitions at local galleries. Students are encouraged to make independent visits to galleries and exhibitions, particularly locally and also in connection with the development of the Personal Investigation.
Careers and Higher Education
The range of Art and Design Degree Courses is extensive, covering the 4 main areas of Fine Art, Graphic Design, Textile and Fashion Design, and Three Dimensional Design, each of which subdivides into numerous more specialist areas of study.
Students who wish to pursue a career in Art and Design, or who wish to develop their interest further, would apply for entry to a Foundation Course in Nottingham after completing GCE Levels. Entry is dependent on interview and a folder of work completed during the A Level course. The purpose of the Foundation Course is to broaden experience so students are prepared for, and can make an informed choice of, a further course of specialist study.