Accessibility links

Photography A Level at Ferndown Upper School Sixth Form

Course description

Students will learn how to develop and extend their existing GCSE photographic skills and techniques in both dark room practice and in the use of Photoshop. They will be encouraged to become more experimental in their approach to practical photography, building upon their strengths to further extend and enhance their expertise. They will be encouraged to develop a more enquiring and personal approach to their interpretation of project briefs – whether leaning towards Fine Art Photography or towards the more commercial graphic production aspects of the medium. At this level originality, creativity and commitment are the keys to success

Entry requirements

If Photography has not been studied at GCSE, then students will be expected to familiarise themselves with the free 30 day trial of Adobe Photoshop over the summer holidays before starting the course. Students must have access to their own 35mm film camera and a digital camera throughout this course. (Smart phone cameras are not sufficient at this advanced level)


Component 1 - Personal Investigation - Weighting 60%, Extended coursework project. 75% practical work, 25% written research and analysis.
Content: Students will explore a set project theme. Developing practical, analytical and conceptual skills as they progress, culminating in a personal response to the theme in a range of materials.
Component 2 -Externally Set Assignment - Weighting 40%, Externally set project. 75% practical work, 25% written research and analysis.15 hour final practical exam.
Content: Personal interpretation of an externally set project brief covering the same elements as the coursework portfolio but in a shorter time span.

Future opportunities

A level Photography is beneficial for those who wish to follow a career in Photography. Students will also be well placed to progress to higher education in any visual arts field such as film making, animation, fine art, illustration, graphic design and web design. We have an excellent record of Photography students progressing onto a range on creative degree courses via our Btec Diploma in Foundation studies. Photography itself is a useful life skill that students will be able to draw upon throughout their lives, whether they are recording future memories or pursuing their interests as a creative pastime.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Ferndown Upper School Sixth Form directly.

Last updated date: 13 September 2016
Provider logo

Key information


  • More information
    • If you are looking to join an excellent Sixth Form where you will achieve good results and have a great time too, Ferndown Upper School is the place for you!

      At Ferndown Upper School we believe that all Sixth Formers are entitled to a full range of activities that include the opportunity to:

      • Participate in main school life and run their own Student Union which organises social events, parties, charity fundraising and improvements to the college block.
      • Enjoy music and sports.
      • Receive clear guidance on future work options and applications to university.

      Every student’s future is important to us, therefore we organise dedicated sessions to provide detailed information on all option choices after Sixth Form. Our Head of Year 13 is also the UCAS co-ordinator at FUS and arranges workshops for students to guide them through the application process to gain entry to university, apprenticeships or employment.

      Furthermore, to ensure that we are offering the best educational and pastoral support, each student is linked to a tutor who will guide them through Sixth Form and will monitor their progress through regular academic mentoring sessions. The tutor is the first contact for students and parents for information and guidance. Tutors can arrange career appointments in school, set in motion information requests to subjects to check academic progress and can organise meetings between students, subject staff and parents.

      The Sixth Form is very much a social community and relations between students and teachers are relaxed and friendly. No two experiences of the Sixth Form are the same, but everyone has much to gain and much to contribute.

      We welcome committed students with ambition. Our most gifted and talented students often progress to the country’s top universities and training establishments, and to promote this students are encouraged to take part in mock interviews with local dignitaries. Our emphasis on taking control and becoming independent learners and thinkers promotes personal growth in all our students. The student community that results is distinctly colourful and energetic.