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Music A Level at The Judd School

Course description

Why choose this subject?

Music is constantly evolving; inspiring creativity and expression in a way that no other subject can. Studying Music at A-Level will give you the opportunity to study a wide range of musical genres. The course is made up of listening, performance and composition; it gives an opportunity to perform and compose in whichever style you desire. Every student has different learning styles and musical tastes; the course values all music styles, skills and instruments. Broaden your mind and foster a love of music with a qualification that students of all abilities and backgrounds will enjoy.

The course should appeal to students who wish to:

  1. Study Music at University or Music College
  2. Add variety to their Sixth Form studies, and have enjoyed GCSE Music and wish to continue their musical development.

Music will complement any other A Level course at Judd. Where the course allows for individual student choice, students may perform and compose in Classical or Contemporary styles, and use of technology is encouraged.

Why study it at The Judd School?

We have access to excellent facilities; the department enjoys exclusive use of a main Music block and a Music Technology Centre. There is a large performance space which is used for recitals and showcases throughout the year, and is fully equipped for orchestral, rock and jazz music, and has an adjoining Recording Studio.

There are ten practice rooms around the Department which are used for our peripatetic lessons and group work in the curriculum. The main Music Technology classroom has 17 newly bought computers which run Cubase and Sibelius music software and are used across all year groups. There are a further two Music Technology rooms that are reserved for KS4 and KS5 use, and run up to date versions of Cubase and Sibelius.

Extra-curricular Music clubs run every day in the department. Clubs that would be particularly suitable for sixth formers are:  School choir, Chamber choir, String Orchestra, Symphony Orchestra, Samba Band, Big Band, and Judd Winds. Students in the sixth form often form bands and there are opportunities for them to perform throughout the year.

There are a huge number of concerts each year: Winter concert, Pianists’ Tea concert, Two Carol Services, Jazz Café, Spring Concert, Battle of the Bands, House Music Competition and a Summer Concert. In 2017 we staged ‘Chess the Musical’, casting students for all performance roles including the band. We look forward to our next Musical which will be in 2019. This year we will be performing Parry’s ‘Blest Pair of Sirens’ in our Summer Concert.

Our slightly smaller set sizes mean that students will receive special attention and direction. Our excellent results of the last few years show the benefit of this. We believe that integrating the three units of performing, composing and listening enables our students to develop the skills and understanding necessary to achieve highly in all areas of the course.

Course content

What you will be learning (course outline):

Unit 1 (40%) - Exam Paper: Appraising Music

  1. Listening
  2. Analysis
  3. Essay
              1. Western Classical Music – Baroque Solo Concerto, The Opera of Mozart, The Piano music of Chopin, Brahms and Grieg.
              2. Popular Music - Stevie Wonder, Joni Mitchell, Muse, Beyonce, Daft Punk, Labrinth
              3. Music for Media (Film, Television and Gaming) - Herrman, Zimmer, Giacchino, Newman, Uematsu


Unit 2 (35%) - Coursework/Recital

Solo and/or ensemble performing as an instrumentalist and/or vocalist and/or music production.

10-12 Minutes of performance


Unit 3 (25%) - Coursework

  1. Composition to a brief
  2. Free Composition

4½ – 6 minutes in total

Entry requirements

Entry requirements:

  • at least grade A at GCSE Music (or Grade 4 on your chosen instrument)
  • a reasonable level of Aural Perception, Analytical, Composing and Performing skills, and willingness to cultivate these by regular practice, including rehearsals and participation in a range of school concerts
  • the potential to reach the minimum performing standard of Grade 5 by March of the examination year
  • fluency in music reading
  • an interest in a wide range of music, and willingness to develop an interest in different styles


How it will be assessed:

All work is externally assessed.

How to apply

You can apply for this course through UCAS Progress. Add this course to your favourites so you can start making an application.

Last updated date: 12 October 2017
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Key information

  • Start date: Next September
  • Duration: 2 years
  • Course code: AQA 7272