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Music A Level at Wallingford School

Course description

Musicians tend to have three things in common; a good musical ear, an appreciation and understanding of some music in some of its forms and styles, and a technical proficiency in one or more instrumental or vocal areas. As a musician you will want to develop these basic skills more fully and will be beginning to think about a specialist for the future, such as composing, arranging, performing, accompanying, analysis and criticism, or music technology. The course not only provides a structured way of achieving high proficiency in the three basic skills but also allows students to start pursuing their individual specialisms.

Course content

Students must study Area of study 1: Western classical tradition 1650–1910 and choose two from:

1. Western classical tradition 1650–1910 (compulsory)
2. Pop music
3. Music for media
4. Music for theatre
5. Jazz
6. Contemporary traditional music
7. Art music since 1910.

Entry requirements

Students should have a GCSE grade B or 6 in the subject they are looking to study at Sixth Form. The exceptions are A levels that have not been taken at GCSE level (e.g. Psychology; Media Studies; Sociology). For these courses we will use the most appropriate GCSE qualification to make a decision. For example, GCSE Maths grade 6 to study Psychology and English Language grade 6 to study Media Studies and Sociology.


A level Music is split into three components:

Unit 1 - Listening
• Listening
• Analysis
• Contextual understanding

Exam paper with listening and written questions using excerpts of music. This
component is worth 40%

Unit 2 - Performance
Musical performance of at least Grade 5 standard.
Solo and/or ensemble performing as an instrumentalist and/or vocalist and/or music
production. This component is worth 35%

Unit 3 - Composing
• Composition 1: Composition to a brief
• Composition 2: Free composition
A minimum of four and a half minutes of music in total is required (no more than six minutes).
This component is worth 25%

How to apply

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

Last updated date: 13 December 2017

Key information