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Music A and AS Level *Fees Payable* at DLD College

Course description

The Music A Level course offers an excellent opportunity to develop your musical skills and knowledge. The course requires you to compose original compositions and also to perform on your main instrument or voice. The exam board allows you to focus either on composing or performing in more depth.

You will learn how to listen perceptively to a variety of styles of music choosing from the Western Classical Tradition, Rock and Pop, Musical Theatre and Jazz. The course is ideal for anyone wanting to deepen their appreciation of music as well as those wishing to make it their career.

Entry requirements

GCSE students will have had experience of composing but if you have not don’t worry: the tasks are clearly structured and the style is entirely up to you – you don’t have to compose in the style of Bach if you don’t want to.

The choice of performance pieces is also up to you, as long as they are approaching grade 5 (or equivalent) standard, then these will be at the right level for the course. Finally, you should be open to new styles of music from different periods and parts of the world because you will always learn something new and find new sources of inspiration.



To study A Levels, your current or pending exam results should be equivalent to or higher than GCSE (General Certificate of Secondary Education) in at least 5 subjects and a minimum level of English equivalent to IELTS 5.0.

At the start of each academic year of study, students following an A-Level course without a pass at grade C in GCSE or IGCSE English Language or with an Academic English score below 6.5 overall, must join an Academic English training course for the duration of the academic year which will be timetabled alongside A-Level lessons.

If your level of English is not sufficient to meet the entry criteria for the A-Level programme you will normally be offered a place on the Abbey DLD Colleges One Year Pre-sessional (Pre A-Level) in order to bring your English skills up to the required level.


AS level Music:

Component 1: Performing  (Examined by a visiting examiner)

Total duration of performances: 6-8 minutes    30% of qualification

Component 2: Composing  (Coursework)

Total duration of compositions: 4.5 -7 minutes     30% of qualification

Component 3: Appraising

Written examination: 1 hours 30 minutes  (Two Areas of Study)  40% of qualification


A level Music

Component 1: Performing  (Examined by a visiting examiner)

Option A: Total duration of performances: 10-12 minutes   35% of qualification


Option B: Total duration of performances: 6-8 minutes    25% of qualification


Component 2: Composing  (Coursework)

Option A: Total duration of compositions: 4-6 minutes     25% of qualification


Option B: Total duration of compositions: 8-10 minutes   35% of qualification


Component 3: Appraising

Written examination: 2 hours 15 minutes  (Three Areas of Study)  40% of qualification

Future opportunities

A good pass in A Level Music is usually needed in order to be able to study it at a higher level. For many courses you have to pass a performance test and/or offer a pass at a high level in the Associated Board grade examinations.

You can take a Music degree at university, where you will be studying alongside students in other disciplines, or at a Music college or Conservatoire, which caters only for music students. Two examples of the latter are the Royal College and the Royal Academy of Music. Past students have gone on to study for degrees in performance or even to train to become music teachers themselves.

Further information


Music is an arts subject and can be combined with any other subject which requires similar skills of critical analysis and formation of arguments with evidence support.

Other subjects could include English Literature, History of Art, Classical Civilisation, Drama and Theatre Studies or a Modern Language. If you are a singer, languages are particularly useful. However, if you are considering a course in Music Technology or Studio Music Mathematics, Physics, ICT or Music Technology should be seriously considered.

How to apply

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

Last updated date: 18 November 2016
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Key information


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    • DLD College London is situated in the heart of London, directly opposite Westminster and Big Ben. The campus is a few minutes walk from Westminster Underground or Waterloo Station.