Accessibility links

Photography AS/A-Level at Rickmansworth School

Course description

The course is both practical and theoretical. Students take, process, print and mount work to a very high standard. Written work covers historical, contextual and technical issues.

Photography has a unique cross-curriculum potential because of its nature and uses; Chemistry, Physics, Maths, History, English and Geography can all be explored through photography in a meaningful way. Our students select their own themes for their course work and tailor the work to suit their interests.

The students have access to a library of over 3000 photography books plus thousands of periodicals for research, and access to a wide range of photographic equipment (including large format cameras) that allows them to produce work to professional standards.

Course content

Practical work is based on silver based black and white photography for many reasons, some of which follow.

  • Cameras and Enlargers cost a fraction of the cost of digital equipment, produce higher quality images and are robust
  • Running costs are lower than either colour/digital photography
  • By concentrating on the purest form of photography students acquire in depth knowledge and skills
  • This form of photography that has the longest history allowing for a deeper understanding of photography’s development and its contextual issues
  • The skills acquired are fundamental to both colour and digital photography
  • Students using digital equipment tend to erase work they do not like - this destroys the record of how they have worked and they inevitably erase photographs that they do not recognise as good

Entry requirements

A Grade in Photography

Students without Photography at GCSE Level please consult with Subject Leader


AS LEVEL - comprised of a combination of coursework and a practical examination



A LEVEL - comprised of a combination of coursework and a practical examination

COMPONENT 1 - PRACTICAL COURSEWORK Personal investigation Supported by Written Essay 60% of A Level mark (1,000-3,000 words)

COMPONENT 2 - EXAM Externally Set Assignment 40% of A Level mark AS Level work submitted by students can not be resubmitted for A Level assessment.

Future opportunities

Most universities still start their photography courses teaching black and white traditional photography and value students who have an understanding of the historical development of photography and of photographic criticism. We take all of these aspects of photography very seriously so our students are well prepared for university courses.

How to apply

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

Last updated date: 21 September 2016
Provider logo

Key information

  • Start date: Next September
  • Duration: 1-2 Years