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Art and Design A Level at Tytherington School

Course description

AS and A Level Fine Art is ideal for individuals who enjoy being creative. The course is primarily practical in content and aims to extend each student’s skill base in a range of media, materials and processes. There is also a historical and contextual studies element that informs and supports each student to develop their ideas and practical work. Emphasis is placed on developing independent enquiry, so students are expected to contribute to and achieve individual targets. Opportunities exist for students to visit galleries and exhibitions as appropriate. AS and A Level students are encouraged to attend residential weekend courses which focus on drawing.

Year 12 students are also invited to apply for Cheshire’s Gifted and Talented course to study Art in Tuscany, including a visit to Florence.

Course content

The structure of the course focuses on the creation of one unit of coursework at AS and one at A Level, and a controlled test unit at both AS and A Level.

Each unit involves independent research starting with historical and contextual sources relating to practical studies. The practical elements of the course concentrate on extending drawing, painting, printing, sculpture and photography skills.

Students will also need to equip themselves with basic materials to supplement those available in the department and may be asked to make financial contributions for canvasses, etc.

At AS level the major unit of coursework is set via a brief, outlining the main focus and themes for exploration and research by the students. The examination unit (externally set task) is set by the AQA examination board and consists of several weeks of planning, preparation and production, including a 5 hour major piece completed under examination conditions.

Students completing the full A Level will pursue a broader based brief with guidance from their subject tutors. This will include a portfolio of practical work and a personal study containing a written essay of 1000 words. The final unit is set by the AQA examination board and much like AS Level, consists of several weeks of preparation in the build up to the examination. The examination is completed over two weeks and lasts 15 hours in total.

Entry requirements

Minimum C grade at GCSE if taken.


At AS and A Level

Coursework = 60%
Externally Set Task = 40%

All work is assessed by course tutors as part of a regular process of monitoring and evaluation. External AQA moderation for both AS and A Level takes place in June.

Future opportunities

Career prospects in Art and Design are very broad and challenging. Employment opportunities are also very favourable. To pursue a career in the field of Art and Design, students usually apply for a place on an Art Foundation course which a school department cannot offer. Students usually apply to Macclesfield, Mid-Cheshire College and Manchester Metropolitan University, but may look further afield for suitable courses. Each year a number of students are accepted onto Architecture Degree Courses. Any student considering applying to study Art at A level and beyond must be committed, enthusiastic and able to work independently.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Tytherington School directly.

Last updated date: 29 June 2015

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