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Music AS level at The Bushey Academy

Course description

At both Advanced Subsidiary Levels (AS) and A2, students experience all three main musical disciplines of performing, composing and listening and understanding. Students will develop performance skills (solo and/or ensemble), compose music and learn about harmony (the basics at AS and stylistic studies at A2). They will build up their aural and analytical skills by studying selections from the New Anthology of Music (Edited by J. Winterson, Peters, 2000) and wider listening.

Course content

The course content is made up of three units;

AS Unit 1: Performing Music *Unit code 6MU01 (30% of the total AS marks)

This unit gives students the opportunities to perform as soloists and/or as part of an ensemble. Teachers and students can choose music in any style. Any instrument(s) and/or voice(s) are acceptable as part of a five-six minute assessed performance.

AS Unit 2: Composing *Unit code 6MU02 (30% of the total AS marks)

This unit encourages students to develop their composition skills leading to the creation of a three-minute piece in response to a chosen brief. Students also write a CD sleeve note to describe aspects of their final composition and explain how other pieces of music have influenced it.

AS Unit 3: Developing Musical Understanding *Unit code 6MU03 (40% AS marks)

This unit focuses on listening to familiar music and understanding how it works. Set works from the anthology provide the focus for the first two sections, through listening and studying scores. It is recommended that students familiarise themselves with each work as a whole, before learning how to identify important musical features and social and historical context. In the third section, students use a score to identify harmonic and tonal features and then apply this knowledge in the completion of a short and simple passage for SATB.

Assessment

Unit 1 Assessment

The music performed is chosen and assessed by the centre and moderated by Edexcel.

Unit 2 Assessment

This unit encourages students to develop their composition skills leading to the creation of a three-minute piece in response to a chosen brief. Students also write a CD sleeve note to describe aspects of their final composition and explain how other pieces of music have influenced it.

Unit 3 Assessment

Assessment is through a 2-hour examination paper set and marked by Edexcel. There are three sections: Section A: Listening; Section B: Investigating musical styles, and Section C: Understanding Chords and lines. Section A requires students to listen to extracts of music: and one CD per examination centre will be provided by Edexcel. In Section C, students may use a keyboard with headphones. A skeleton score is provided for Section A. Students are given five minutes’ reading time at the start of the examination. Students will not have access to copy of the anthology during the examination nor to any musical software for Section C.

Future opportunities

If you enjoyed the AS GCE Music course then you can consider an: A2 in Music, Music Technology, and or Performing Arts. The full GCE course (AS plus A2) is excellent preparation for higher education courses in music, but is equally valuable for non-specialists as a second or third area of study. The AS units alone can offer a broad and satisfying experience for those who want to conclude their musical studies at this point.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact The Bushey Academy directly.

Last updated date: 19 September 2016
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Key information

  • Start date: Next September
  • Duration: 1 year

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