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Art A-Level at Lancaster Royal Grammar School

Course description

Why study Art?

Art exists for many different reasons and purposes. A-level students must not only seek to develop their own powers of perception and extend the ways in which they create visual works; they must also be prepared to engage fully with the study of Art as a form of cultural discourse. In essence, this means that the A-level course is as much concerned with Art History, Theory and Criticism as it is with the actual making of artworks. The A-level student must seek to cultivate an informed practice and so become more visually literate as well as more creatively adept.

What are lessons like?

Much of the learning at A-level takes place through individual tuition. Nevertheless, students will receive several art historical lectures throughout the year and students are required to word process the notes they take during these lectures. Students will be guided in practical techniques (eg different ways in which oil paint may be used) and are expected to continue working practically outside lesson time. Great importance is attached to seeing art at first hand in galleries and museums: where practicable, the Department will organise visits to UK galleries.

Course content

Lower Sixth (AS)

AS Coursework (50% of AS, 25% of the full A -level). Development of a coursework portfolio exemplifying practical and written work carried out during the AS course. At LRGS this course will bring together the following themes: Transcription (New Art from Old); An Introduction to Oil Painting; Manipulation of the Photographic Image: Paintshop Pro and Silk-Screen Printing. AS Exam (50% of AS, 25% of full A-level). Externally set, theme-based exam; choice of five questions (5 hrs).

Upper Sixth (A2)

A2 Coursework (50% of A2, 25% of the full Alevel). A personal investigation in which students develop a personalised body of informed practical work, supported by a written compoent of 1,000 – 3,000 words. A2 Exam (50% of A2, 25% of full A-level). Externally set, theme-based exam; choice of eight questions (15 hrs).

Entry requirements

The entry requirement for Year 12 (Lower Sixth) is at least seven Bs or better in the GCSE examinations, including a minimum of a B grade in any subject to be taken. An A grade is required for A-level Mathematics.  All applicants need a minimum of a C grade in both English and Mathematics, regardless of the subjects they wish to take.  

Please note that at the end of the Lower Sixth, at least three grades at D or above are normally required to ensure progression into the Upper Sixth (Year 13).

Overseas applicants

We will accept an equivalent level of performance in your country’s exams and will require verification of results by your school. A report supporting your application from your current school will also be very important.  Please note that we can only accept overseas students who are UK passport holders.


The AS exam is taken in March of the Lower Sixth; the A2 exam in May of the Upper Sixth. Lower Sixth students receive an AS result before entering the Upper Sixth, although this is not cashed in.

Future opportunities

A-level Art is an important subject for careers in architecture, fine art, photography, advertising, web design, graphic/product design, fashion, theatre, history of art and conservational/curatorial fields.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Lancaster Royal Grammar School directly.

Last updated date: 25 August 2016
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