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Fine Art AS/A-Level at St Aloysius RC College

Course description

The course is for anyone who would like to continue to develop their art and design skills and knowledge as they move into A level study. You will follow a fine art course which is broad based and gives you the opportunity to work in a wide variety of media including collage and mixed media as well as more traditional painting and drawing media. You will be encouraged to develop your creativity based on solid basic skills such as observational drawing. During the course you will produce a Personal Study. This will be presented in both written and visual form and will be based on an art and design theme which is preferably related to the coursework. The theme of the study could be historical, philosophical, technical or psychological. In the A Level year of the course you will develop the skills you learned during your AS year. You will start to do longer projects which will allow you to develop your ideas more fully and produce more finished pieces. Your coursework will develop one aspect of your AS work in a more personal and creative way. Throughout the course the emphasis will be on developing your creativity and research skills and your appreciation of art and design.

Studies in art encourage a broad range of skills that can feed into other parts of your life. This is a demanding course that stimulates you to explore the work of other artists as well as your own ideas through practical and written work. You will build confidence in selecting and articulating your personal response to a given title; work on your decision making and project management, be able to form opinions and offer constructive advice to one another as to how a piece of art work could be developed.

In the 1st year -  AS course you are introduced to a broad range of materials and techniques. Practical, subject based projects throughout the 1st year are designed to bridge the gap between GCSE and A level. They are intended also to help build your versatility in art and to build your confidence and ability to plan and implement your project ideas in line with the subject criteria. You will be required to choose and study the work of several artists and then respond to what you have seen and read by producing your own practical response work.

The second year - A Level, is structured as follows: coursework, for which you have the option of choosing your own theme. This one project worth 60% of the overall grade and involves collecting research, experimenting with media, developing ideas and producing final pieces. The emphasis is on working to your strengths whilst keeping an open mind to alternative ways of working. Within this project you will also complete a personal study of around 3,000 words studying in depth the work of artists. This will link in with your chosen theme for your coursework. Finally there is a controlled assignment worth 40% of the final grade, a fifteen hour exam that takes place in the summer term, with an exam paper issued around ten weeks prior to the exam allowing plenty of time for research, experimentation and preparation.

Course content

This course encourages you to develop and express your own response to a wide range of art work, a skill that will remain with you whatever route you choose after A Levels. Many students use the portfolio of work they have built up during the course to apply for Art Foundation courses either locally or across the country. Foundation courses are usually a year long, after which students often specialise in a type of artistic expression and study this form at university for three years.

Entry requirements

GCSE Grade Cs in any 5 of the following subjects (inc. short GCSEs):

  • Business Studies
  • English Language
  • English Literature
  • Foreign Language
  • Maths
  • Computer Science
  • Humanities:
  • History
  • Geography
  • Religious Studies
  • Psychology
  • Science (double, triple or BTEC Merit)

If a student does not have a grade C in English Language or Maths it is a legal requirement to resit either a GCSE or Level 2 in Functional Skills whilst at the college.

Students must achieve a grade C in any GCSE which is directly related to their AS level choice.

Universities will require most applicants to be qualified at this level.

If ou feel you have the ability and determination to undertake this course but for some reason do not meet our entry requirements please contact us to discuss your position.



AS - Year 12 assessment is through a controlled assignment project and final piece (100%)

A2 - Year 13 Assessment is through a coursework portfolio (worth 60%) and a controlled assignment (worth 40%).

Future opportunities

There is always a need for creative artistic people in the world of work, especially now that both print and online content must be engaging and innovative in order to compete for consumer attention in our media saturated world. Careers such as:


Graphic Designer


Art director

Web Design

Publication Design (magazines)

Television Production



Public Relations


How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact St Aloysius RC College directly.

Last updated date: 05 December 2016
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