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Music A Level at QE Academy Trust

Course description

Anyone who has a keen interest in creating and listening to different styles of music and who wishes to broaden their experience and deepen their understanding of live and recorded music would be suitable for this course. A level Music develops the practical skills of performing and composing alongside listening and analysing a wide variety of musical genres. Whilst an artistic and practical subject, Music is recognised by universities as an academic A‐level and provides a good step towards degrees in a wide range of subject areas including Sciences, Mathematics, Languages, Humanities and Arts. It is a requirement to have passed A‐level music for most Higher Education music courses, but is also considered a valuable subject to take for entry other degree courses.

Course content

AS outline

The specification has been designed to enable AS and A‐level students to be co‐ taught. At AS Level, this specification focuses on the development of three musical disciplines. Performing, composing and listening and understanding. The use of Music Technology (computer sequencing, sampling and multi‐tracking) is encouraged throughout the course and may be particularly appropriate for composition and arranging.

A‐Level Outline

Completing the full A‐Level develops your skills, extending and applying knowledge gained in the first year of the course.  You must choose either Option A in both Components 1 and 2 or Option B in both Components 1 and 2. All learners must study Component 3. 

Entry requirements

Grade C at GCSE or a pass at Btec level 2 or above is helpful but not essential. Students are expected to participate in Music Department activities. Some understanding of the rudiments of Theory is recommended for this course.  

Assessment

AS Level Components

Component 1: Performing
Total duration of performances: 6‐8 minutes
30% qualification
Non‐exam assessment: externally assessed by a visiting examiner

A performance consisting of a minimum of two pieces either as a soloist or as part of an ensemble or a combination of both. One piece must reflect the musical characteristics of one area of study.

Component 2: Composing
Total duration of compositions: 4.5‐7 minutes
30% qualification
Non‐exam assessment: externally assessed by WJEC
Two compositions one of which will be in response to a brief set by WJEC. The second composition is a free composition.

Component 3: Appraising
Written examination: 1 hour and 30 minutes
40% qualification

Two areas of study:
- Area of study A: The Western Classical Tradition

 A choice of one area of study from:  
- Area of study B: Rock and Pop
- Area of study C: Musical Theatre
Area of study D: Jazz  
This component includes a listening examination.  
 

A‐Level Components

Component 1: Performing
Option A: Total duration of performance 10‐12 minutes
Option A: 35% of qualification
Option B: Total duration of performance 6‐8 minutes
Option B: 25% of qualification

Option A: Performing (35%) A performance consisting of a minimum of three pieces. At least one of these pieces must be as a soloist. The other pieces may be either as a soloist or as part of an ensemble or a combination of both  
Option B: Performing (25%) A performance consisting of a minimum of two pieces either as a soloist or as part of an ensemble or a combination of both.   Non‐exam assessment: externally assessed by a visiting examiner

Component 2: Composing
Option A: Total duration of compositions: 4‐6 minutes 25% qualification
Option B: Total duration of compositions: 8‐10 minutes 35% qualification Non‐exam assessment: externally assessed by WJEC

Option A: Two compositions one of which one of which will be in response to a brief set by WJEC. The second composition is a free composition.
Option B: Three compositions. One of which will be in response to a brief set by WJEC. The second composition will be related to the third component and the third will be a free composition.

Component 3: Appraising
Written examination: 2 hours and 15 minutes

40% of qualification

Three areas of study:
- Area of study A: The Western Classical Tradition
A choice of one area of study from:  
- Area of study B: Rock and Pop  
- Area of study C: Musical Theatre  
- Area of study D: Jazz

A choice of one area of study from:  
- Area of study E: Into the Twentieth Century 
- Area of study F: Into the Twenty‐first Century   They both contain contrasting set works, which will be analysed.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact QE Academy Trust directly.

Last updated date: 17 December 2015
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