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History of Art and Architecture (AS/A Level) at New College Swindon

Course description

Have you ever visited a town, city, or an art gallery, and felt an urge to find out more? Have you ever looked at a building and wondered how it was constructed? Have you ever you looked at an older building and wondered what each individual part is called? If you said yes to any of these questions then this is the perfect course for you! If you are the type of student who has an inquisitive mind and enjoys discovering information then this is a perfect subject for you.

History of Art and Architecture embraces an astonishingly broad range of topics, allowing you to familiarise with the social and historical context of different periods in the history of human civilisation through the means of painting, sculpture and architecture.

You do not need to have participated in any art subject at GCSE to study this subject. The course tests your ability to analyse a painting, a sculpture or a building and make an informed opinion on why it looks the way it does.

Course content

AS/A Level units are:

  • AS Level Unit 1; Visual Analysis and Interpretation. In the first part of the AS, you will learn new terminology to enable you to formally analyse painting, sculpture and architecture
  • AS Level Unit 2; Themes. Building on your analytical skills from unit 1 you will learn about significant art historical themes through studying specific pieces of art and architecture and discover their significance.
  • A Level Unit 3; Investigation of Art and Architecture from 19th Century Europe. 
  • A Level Unit 4; Investigation of Art and Architecture from Europe and the USA 1900-1945.

Entry requirements

You should have a grade C or above in GCSE English Language.


This course has no coursework. Students will sit two exams at the end of both AS and A2 courses.

Future opportunities

As an academic A level, this course is well respected by Universities. Many of our students have since attended prestigious Universities across the country to study the subject, and specifically architecture, further. These include; The Courtauld Institute in London, The University of Norwich, The University of Bristol, York University and Goldsmiths University. From HE you could progress on to the following professions….Teaching, Lecturer, Arts Administrator, Auctioneer, Arts Conservator, Art History Tour Lecturer, Freelance Art Historian, Archivist, Art Librarian, Image Librarian/Visual Resources Creator, Museums Communications Officer, Curator, Decorative Arts Curator, Commercial Gallery owner, Events Manager, and a Museum Registrar. 

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact New College Swindon directly.

Last updated date: 28 April 2016

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