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Music AS/A2 Level at Huish Episcopi Science College

Course description

The Edexcel AS and A level is a challenging yet exciting and stimulating qualification, that aims to develop the three musical disciplines of performance, composition and listening and understanding. Although an academic qualification at its core, the course will suit any student with a passion for studying music of a range of styles and genres.

Course content

See assessment.

Entry requirements

5 GCSEs (or equivalent) grades A*-C. Ability to play an instrument to grade 5 standard or above. B or above in GCSE music is desirable but not essential. Ability to read music is desirable but again, not essential.


Unit 1: Performing Music (30%)
Students must prepare, rehearse and present a 5-6 minute recital on their chosen instrument.
Unit 2: Composing Music (30% of AS)
Students must produce one composition from a selection of four briefs. As part of this task, they will explore a range of compositional techniques and devices.
Unit 3: Developing Musical Understanding (40% of AS)
For this unit, students will study a number of set works ranging from Debussy's 'Prélude à l'après-midi d'un faune' to Van Morrison's 'Tupelo Honey'. This will involve detailed score analysis. In addition, students will be expected to develop their understanding of four-part harmony writing in the style of JS Bach.


Unit 4: Extended Performance (30% of A2)
Students extend their musical skills by preparing a 15 minute assessed instrumental performance of a balanced program of music.
Unit 5: Composition and Technical Study (30% of A2. Externally assessed.)
For this unit, student must extend their compositional skills and produce two compositions. One will be a response to a chosen brief. The other will be a timed technical exercise based on knowledge and awareness of four-part harmony writing.
Unit 6: Further Musical Understanding (40% of A2) For this unit, students will study a wider range of set works from an anthology, analysing them in terms of the elements of music.

Future opportunities

On completion of the AS and A2 Level music qualification, the next logical step would be a degree course. Students can choose to continue with the academic study of music at a University, or to specialise in instrumental performance or composition at a specialist Music College. For students not wishing to continue with music in higher education, AS and A Level music is a well recognised and respected qualification by both employers and higher education institutions.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Huish Episcopi Science College directly.

Last updated date: 24 June 2015

Key information

  • Start date: Next September
  • Duration: 1 - 2 Years