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A Level Music at Wadebridge School

Course description

AS Level
Unit 1: Influences on Music (Listening)
Written paper, usually examined in May of Year 12. The exam consists of structured listening questions using a CD of musical excerpts. There are then two essay questions, one based on the set work from the compulsory Area of Study, The Western Classical Tradition, and one based on a second chosen Area of Study.
 
Unit 2: Creating Musical Ideas (Composing)
Externally assessed coursework completed in controlled time. Candidates compose one piece of music in response to a chosen brief.

Unit 3: Interpreting Musical Ideas (Performing)
Internally assessed coursework. Candidates offer two performances from a choice of six, including opportunities for solo, ensemble and/or technology-based performance.

A2 Level
Unit 4: Music in Context (Listening)
Written paper, usually examined in June of Year 13. The exam contains structured listening questions using a CD of musical excerpts. There are then two essay questions, one based on the chosen set work from the compulsory Area of Study (The Western Classical Tradition), and one based on a second chosen Area of Study.

Unit 5: Developing Musical Ideas (Composing)
Externally assessed coursework completed in controlled time. Candidates compose one piece of music in response to a chosen brief.

Unit 6: A Musical Performance (Performing)
Externally assessed. Candidates offer two (or more) contrasting pieces to form a short programme for either solo acoustic performance and/or performance via music technology.

Entry requirements

Students are required to reach the Wadebridge Sixth Form Level 3 entry criteria. In addition, you will need to be an active musician with instrumental skills, theoretical knowledge (including the ability to read musical notations) and also the ability to compose music. It would be most advantageous to have achieved a high grade at GCSE level. It is also worth noting that the standard of work and understanding required is a lot higher than GCSE level, therefore students should be prepared to work very hard to achieve this new level. 

Assessment

Listening to and appraising music
Learning theoretical and compositional concepts
Learning musical, historical and contextual information
Composing exercises and full pieces 
Performing individually and as part of a group

Future opportunities

Studying music at A level will prepare you either for further study in higher education, or to enjoy music more fully as a social and leisure activity. If you are looking towards a career in music, an A Level is a very useful qualification which recognises high level skills in different musical activities. Music is a major industry with a wide range of opportunities, employing an estimated 130,000 full-time in the UK alone. You may want to study music for the love of it, or to pursue a career as a singer, instrumentalist, or composer, but the possibilities don't stop there. Whatever level of skills you achieve, there are career paths open, whether you decide to leave school at sixteen or go on to university. Whatever your interest, there are jobs in teaching or music therapy, production, promotion, management, as well as performance.

Further information

Independent Study Time:

Students will support and develop musical skills both in the classroom and independently. Your regular independent study will include: 
Daily practise on your instrument(s)
Regular group music making 
Developing compositional ideas
Listening to set works and music in general in order to develop listening and appraising skills
Developing essay writing skills

How to apply

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

Last updated date: 20 April 2015

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