Art & Design - A Level at Heckmondwike Grammar School
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Practical Skills Foundation
At the start of your A level course, you will undergo an initial programme of tasks designed to develop your practical skills to give you the knowledge and understanding that you need for independent project work later on in the course.
The Study of Other Artists
Integrated within the practical skills will be the study of the work of relevant artists, depending upon the skill being explored at the time. This will involve both practical and written analysis to develop both your practical skills and conceptual understanding of the subject.
Later on in year 12 you will be asked to demonstrate what you have learnt through undertaking a themed project that covers all of the A level Assessment Objectives (AOs). This project is intended to prepare you for the demands of the ‘Personal Investigation’ module in Year 13.
This is a ‘self-set’, independent, personal investigation into an aspect of Art & Design, a technique, a common theme, ‘artist’ or group of artists. The investigation has its main base in developing your practical understanding but it must also be supported
by some accompanying extended writing of between 1000 and 3000 words. The quality of your writing is assessed alongside your practical work.
Externally Set Assignment
This is a project chosen from several titles provided on a question paper from the AQA and is a form of final examination for the A level. This begins in February in year 13 and has to be completed by May. You need to build a project around your chosen title that meets the requirements of all of the four AOs. Your project final outcome will be made under examination conditions and within a time limit of 15 hours.
Minimum requirements for admission to the Sixth Form*
- A grade 5 in Mathematics, with a 6 preferred.
- A grade 5 in English Language or English Literature, with a 6 preferred.
- Achieving at least 3 other GCSEs at grade 6 or above.
Subject specific requirement*
Grade 6 or Merit Art or portfolio of high-quality work
* May be studied at A level without prior study
There are four Assessment Objectives. All work falls into one or more of these objectives for assessment purposes.
AO1 Develop ideas through sustained and focussed investigations informed by contextual and other sources, demonstrating analytical and critical understanding.
AO2 Explore and select appropriate resources, media, materials, techniques and processes, reviewing and refining ideas as the work develops.
AO3 Record ideas, observations and insights relevant to intentions, reflecting critically on work and progress.
AO4 Present a personal and meaningful response that realises intentions and where appropriate, makes connections between visual and other elements.
Whether you’re designing ships as a naval architect or creating cutting edge art as a fine artist, the one thing that all jobs in this family have in common is creativity. Here are just some of the careers that the study of Art & Design can lead to – animator, architect, ceramic designer, costume designer, fashion designer, fine artist, footwear designer, glassmaker, video-games designer, graphic designer, illustrator, interior designer, jewellery designer, landscape architect, motor vehicle designer, photographer, set designer, web designer.
A level Art & Design is a practical-based course where you build up a portfolio of work as you develop your skills and vocabulary of techniques. Investigating the work of other artists leads you to develop your mastery of materials in year 12, providing a solid foundation on which to build your project work and externally set assignment in the second year of the course.
Exam Board: AQA
How to apply
If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Heckmondwike Grammar School directly.