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A Level Music

Overview 

At both Advanced Subsidiary Levels (AS) and A2, students experience all three main musical disciplines of performing, composing and listening and understanding.

Skills

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.

Flexibility

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.

The anthology

The anthology remains the basis of historical and analytical study. Works are now grouped into three areas of study, Instrumental music, Vocal music and Applied music. It is hoped that in this specification teachers and students will enjoy working on different selections of work in each year of the course.

Course Outline

This is a two year A Level course which consists of 6 units. 3 at AS and 3 at A2

Assessment 

AS

Unit 1: Performing Music:

5-6 minute assessed recital recorded.

(30%of AS/15%of A2)

Unit 2: Composing:

Minimum 3 minute composition to one of four briefs and one hour “sleeve note” written task

(30%of AS/15%of A2)

Unit 3: Developing Musical Understanding:

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.

(40%of AS/20%of A2)

A2

Unit 4: Extended Performance:

5-6 minute assessed recital recorded.

(15%of A2)

Unit 5: Composition and Technical Study:

This unit has two sections: composition and technical study. The composition section

further develops students’ composition skills, leading to the creation of a final three-minute piece in response to a chosen brief. The technical study section builds on the knowledge and awareness of harmony gained in Unit 3 section C through the medium of pastiche studies. Students must complete two tasks in this unit choosing from either one composition and one technical study or two compositions or two technical studies.

(15%of A2)

Unit 6: Further Musical Understanding:

Assessment is through a 2 hour examination paper set and marked by Edexcel. There are three sections: Section A: Aural analysis, Section B: Music in context and Section C: Continuity and change in instrumental music. Section A requires students to listen to extract of music and one CD per examination centre will be provided by Edexcel. A skeleton score is provided for Section A. Students are given five minutes’ reading time at the start of the examination. Each student must have access to an unmarked copy of the anthology during the examination.

(20%of A2)

Examining Board 

Edexcel

Special Entry Requirements

C or above at GCSE music or other relevant experience (at the discretion of the Head of Music)

Teaching Methods

Lessons will be varied throughout the year from composition practical sessions to sessions of intense academic analysis of set works.

You will have two teachers each of which will work on different set works with you throughout the year. Teaching will be altered to your individual needs and teachers are happy to arrange extra sessions where they are needed.

Other information

To view the specification please click below

http://qualifications.pearson.com/content/dam/pdf/A%20Level/Music/2013/Specification%20and%20sample%20assessments/UA035245_GCE_Lin_Music_Issue_5.pdf

How is the course graded

How to succeed in GCSE Art

Successful students need be imaginative, creative and positive. Students must be organised and prepared to work hard in their own time. Patience and peristence are key virtues, as is the ability to take criticism positively. Successful students need to be open, expressive and committed.

Skill Requirements

GCSE students are encouraged to work over an extended period of time on the development of their projects. This process is broken down into easily understood targets by the Art teacher and requires a mature and independent approach from the student in order to be successful.

Students should always have a set of personal targets to complete – these targets are likely to be detailed on the student’s Progress Log and found on the task lists in their sketchbook.

How can you help?

Ask your son/daughter about their artwork and their ideas. Take them to galleries and to places where they can gather photographs for their work. Provide them with materials and tools, and try to sort out a space in the house for them to study. Finally, ask to see their Progress Logs – it’s all there!

Extra-curricular Support

The Art Department opens its doors daily to students to come and work at break, lunchtime and after school on Tuesdays & Thursdays. We regularly arrange Saturday Workshops, sometimes inviting specialist artists to deliver a master class. There are many other opportunities to be involved more in Art such as mural painting, Rock Challenge set design and Saatchi Online (www.saatchionline.com/shtc)