Full name of specification
AQA A Level Fine Art or Art, Craft and Design
Exam board specification link
Why study this course?
This course prepares you for further study or work in the creative industry, one of the fastest-growing and desirable sectors in the UK. As it is based on portfolio-building and on your personal interests, it can be tailored to a career focus as well as your strengths and interests. Students may choose from two pathways within the course: Fine Art (more traditionally-focused media), and Art, Craft and Design (includes choice of design fields including art, graphics, photography, film, fashion design, interior design, concept art, textiles and ceramics, lens-based media, 3D design, and more).
What can you expect from this course?
The course structure is designed to imitate the format in which professional artists and designers work in, including planning, research, sketching ideas, experimenting with materials, and drafting versions. Students have a structure to work in, but within this structure they have a lot of freedom to choose projects and artists they are interested in. This means that each class has a wide range of outcomes, and that you can choose projects that are based on your strengths and interests. Year 12 is a slightly more experimental year, giving you opportunity to try new skills and build your portfolio. Year 13 is more focused on the personal investigation (60% of your grade) and your exam (40% of your grade).
How is it assessed?
This is assessed holistically, with 4 different assessment objectives, each weighted equally. As art is often subjective, we measure as objectively as we can: the thoroughness and relevance of research and development of ideas, documentation and recording (including drawing, photographs and reflection), media experimentation, and final outcome (and how it links to the developmental work). This means that your preparatory work is crucial to your success.
What are the entry requirements?
A level 6 in an art and design GCSE; portfolios also considered
What can I do after completing this qualification?
You can apply to a degree in creative subjects, art foundation, or creative sector careers that require a portfolio.
What will I study?
Year 12- Skills focus and portfolio-building: local trips and workshops to enhance skills, with additional projects that include a public art exhibition and the “Christmas challenge”
Year 13- Personal investigation portfolio (60% of grade) starting after Easter (in Y 12) and running until the end of January. In February, you will receive the exam paper from AQA and have 8 weeks to prepare an outcome, followed by a 15-
hour exam (40% of your grade).
Additional activities within this subject
Residential field trips to London, observational drawing opportunities, networking with local artists and designers, collaboration with Northern Lights artist studios.
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