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Subjects

A LEVEL COURSES

Art & Design

St Peter’s Art A Level provides exciting, diverse and challenging creative opportunities. It has established an outstanding reputation for student success, developed through experimental and forward-thinking teaching and learning. Gallery visits, artist workshops and residential fieldwork also form an important part of a rich and rewarding curriculum.

Content

  • Explore the work of a wide range of artists and designers.
  • Develop ‘transferable’ life skills including your ability to observe, to solve creative problems, to present your ideas, and to manage creative projects.
  • Have opportunities to take part in residential fieldwork and gallery visits. You will also have the opportunity to respond to live briefs and take part in community-based projects. 

Minimum Entry Requirements

Grade 5 or above GCSE Art, Photography, Textiles, or an alternative arts-based option. If you were unable to study Art at GCSE you will be considered following a discussion with the Subject Leader.

Combines well with...

English Literature, History, Product Design, Fashion & Textiles, Art Based Photography.

Opportunities

The course provides an excellent foundation for a career or further study in many creative industries. Future pathways might include Architecture, Web Design, Illustration, Textiles/Fashion Design, Animation or Filmmaking. The majority of successful Art students continue to an Art, Design or Lens based Degree or Foundation course.

Exam Board Pearson

Art has allowed me to develop deeper thinking skills and to express things that can’t be said through words alone.

Art Based Photography

This A Level is an arts-based option that will enable you to look, think, question, articulate and create with heightened sensitivity. It has established an exceptional reputation for experimental and forward-thinking teaching and learning. Gallery visits, artist workshops and residential fieldwork also form an important part of a rewarding pathway that is both highly practical and academically rich.

Content

  • Explore the work of a wide range of photographers and artists.
  • Develop ‘transferable’ life skills – including your ability to observe, to work with others, to solve creative problems, to present your ideas and to manage creative projects.
  • The opportunity to take part in residential fieldwork, gallery visits, respond to live briefs and take part in community-based projects. 

Minimum Entry Requirements

Grade 5 or above in GCSE Photography, Art, Textiles, or an alternative arts-based option. If you were unable to study an arts-based subject at GCSE you will be considered following a discussion with the Subject Leader.

Combines well with...

English Literature, History, Product Design, Fashion & Textiles, Art & Design. 

Opportunities

The course provides an excellent foundation for a career or further study in many creative industries. Future pathways might include photo journalism, advertising, media, design, fashion, animation or filmmaking. The majority of successful Photography students continue to a Lens based Degree or Foundation course.

Exam Board Pearson

Studying Photography has enabled me to see and think in a new way, and to make connections that most people overlook.

 

Summer Task

Biology

A Level Biology offers an opportunity to understand and relate to the living world around us. You will develop an understanding of how we maintain life both internally within our body and externally within our environment. You will study a subject that is constantly evolving from finding cures for diseases to advancements in genetic engineering that could change life forever. The course offers individual and group research, investigations and fieldwork that will develop independent learning as a Sixth Form student.

Content 

Over two years you will be discovering the wonders of Biology, studying topics ranging from human and animal physiology, to plant biochemistry, genetics and genetic engineering. You will develop your practical skills alongside your understanding of concepts and principles, through a range of investigations, presentations and fieldwork opportunities. Studying Biology teaches us to ask questions, make observations, evaluate evidence and solve problems. 

Minimum Entry Requirements

GCSE Biology Grade 6 or Combined Science (Trilogy) Grade 6-6 plus GCSE Mathematics Grade 6. If you are planning on studying more than one science at A Level, we recommend you have Grade 7 in these at GCSE.

Combines well with...

Chemistry, Mathematics, Psychology, Sociology, Physical Education, Geography and Health and Social Care.

Opportunities 

An A Level qualification in Biology can lead to careers in Medicine, Dentistry, Veterinary Science, Dietetics, Physiotherapy and other health-related areas as well as to a wide range of university courses including Ecology, Molecular Biology, Genetics, Biotechnology, and Biomedical Sciences. A Level Biology is a preferred entry requirement to many universities. It is highly regarded academically as it is a challenging and rewarding subject to study. A Biology qualification shows that you have an analytical mind, and can discuss current issues in the subject. 

Exam Board AQA

Biology is a challenging but fascinating subject. Really passionate teachers support you every step of the way. I particularly enjoyed the human biology aspect of the course including the heart dissection. 

 

Summer Task

Business

Business A Level is the course for you if you see yourself as an entrepreneur, running your own business, being a specialist in a large company or having great business ideas. It is relevant to whatever you do in the future – all opportunities have a link to what is learnt on this course.

Content 

Business will help you to develop a critical understanding of organisations, the internal workings and management of businesses and the process of decision making. At least one visit is included.

Minimum Entry Requirements

GCSE English Language or GCSE English Literature Grade 5, GCSE Mathematics Grade 6. It is not essential to have studied GCSE Business Studies.

Combines well with...

From Chemistry to Drama (and everything in between) fits with studying Business. 

Opportunities 

A Level Business enables you to follow most careers and is particularly useful for those considering law, accountancy, banking, insurance, marketing, human resources, but principally for those students considering starting their own business.

Exam Board Pearson

Although I didn’t study GCSE Business I find it challenging yet interesting. It also helps you develop life skills to assist in any career you want to follow.

 

Summer Task

Chemistry

From smart phones to satsumas, from the atmosphere to the atom, chemistry underpins every aspect of our existence. With the development of new nano-materials and expanding scientific fields such as astrochemistry and environmental chemistry, there has never been a better time to take chemistry to a higher and more exciting level. The A Level course will encourage you to question and consider the impact of chemical sciences in everyday life through independent laboratory practicals whilst being supported with a thorough grounding in theoretical study.

Content 

We all do Chemistry every day! It is the study of matter and the changes it undergoes at the atomic and molecular level, and will allow you to make sense of the world around you. The course has been designed to introduce you to chemistry by revising and building on the basics of the atom. This gives the foundation which enables the harder concepts to be understood much more quickly and easily. Practical chemistry is an essential feature of study at A Level and lots of new techniques will be encountered and perfected. If you enjoy making sense of abstract concepts you will find the study of chemistry stimulating. The real joy of chemistry is in applying your understanding of scientific models to lots of new situations. 

Minimum Entry Requirements

GCSE Chemistry Grade 6, or GCSE Combined Science (Trilogy) Grade 6-6. Plus GCSE Mathematics Grade 6. If you are planning on studying more than one Science at A Level, we recommend that you have Grade 7’s in these at GCSE.

Combines well with...

Biology, Physics, Mathematics and Further Mathematics. 

Opportunities 

Chemistry is essential if you wish to study medicine, dentistry, veterinary science and many other science vocations such as forensics, chiropractics and pharmacy. It is also a highly regarded academic subject for entry to a wide range of courses including architecture, law and engineering.

Exam Board AQA

No other subject allows you to learn about amazingly interesting processes in everyday life. Chemistry at St Peter’s will equip you with all the skills and knowledge for higher education. The teachers will support you through the course and constantly push you to fulfil your potential.

 

Summer Task

Dance

A Level Dance will enable you to think critically about Dance as an art form, to develop your knowledge of the study of Dance in higher education, experience performance and choreography through practice and prepare you to pursue further training in dance in a university or vocational context.

Content

  • Performing – solo and group
  • Choreography – group dance
  • Critical appreciation of Rooster by Christopher Bruce, Rambert Dance Company, Singing in the Rain by Gene Kelly and American Jazz Dance. 

Minimum Entry Requirements

GCSE Dance Grade 6 (or evidence of extensive dance training in the private sector). GCSE English Language or English Literature Grade 5.

Opportunities 

Performer, Choreographer, Teacher, Dance Science (Anatomy and Physiology), Arts Administration, Education Officer for a Dance Company, Dance Critic/Journalist, Dance or Movement Therapy, Fitness/Pilates/Yoga Instructor.

Combines well with...

Drama & Theatre Studies, Music, Physical Education, English Literature, BTEC Performing Arts.

Exam Board AQA

The course allows us to analyse and learn the dance styles and techniques of many interesting and inspirational choreographers.

 

Summer Task

Drama & Theatre Studies

A demanding and challenging Actor training. Responding as performers, directors and designers in both devising and scripted areas you will hone your performance skills as well as your theoretical underpinning of Theatre of the past and current industry practice, with opportunities to work with industry professionals. This course is both practically and academically challenging and will secure you the required skills to move to the next level of training or an abundance of other careers. You will experience professional level understanding of working in all disciplines involved in Theatre but with a specialised focus on the Actor at the centre of this. We provide the above in professional standard facilities with teaching and performing usually taking place in our purpose built 470 seat theatre.

Content

  • Devise a piece of theatre in light of a current working practitioner to explore themes and topics relevant to the world in which we live. Accompanied by a video or written portfolio documenting the process. Themes in the play will challenge you about the way in which we live our lives today. 
  • Performance of a monologue or a duologue from a scripted play and the performance of a group scripted play to an audience with full technical support. The two performances will be contrasting and will challenge students to push themselves as actors and develop skills in voice, movement and approaches to text and direction ready for further training.
  • Exam that asks you to respond as a Director, Designer, Actor and Audience member. Whilst theoretically challenging it offers the chance to be creative and work as if an industry professional. 

Minimum Entry Requirements

GCSE Drama Grade 6 or equivalent, GCSE English Language or GCSE English Literature Grade 5.

Combines well with...

BTEC Performing Arts, Dance, English Language, English Literature, Government & Politics, History, Music. 

Opportunities 

Conservatoire training in Acting or Musical Theatre, Recent graduates have gained places at RADA, Arts Ed and other leading conservatoires in actor training. Leading  University course to study Drama or Theatre Arts. University courses or vocational training in Acting, Producing, Directing and Designing for Theatre. Actor, Director, Designer – sound, light, stage management etc... plus a huge range of other industry jobs such as business, education, medicine and law. Arts subjects develop the attitudes and aptitudes required for employability. 

Exam Board Pearson

St Peter’s Drama and Theatre studies inspires you to find your confidence in your skills as an actor as well as developing new ones. It also gives you a passion for styles of theatre you had not considered before. It is an exciting and challenging course and opens doorways onto a variety of paths for wherever your talents take you.

 

Summer Task

Economics

Economics is about looking at the limited resources in the world and matching these with unlimited demands, giving you a greater interest, understanding and awareness of the world in which you live and the role that you play in it, both now and in the future. It’s real, it’s relevant and looks at topical issues. 

Content

As well as developing a wide range of skills such as debating and decision making, there is the opportunity to explore real issues such as “What will be the economic effects of the UK leaving the EU?”, “Does inflation really matter?” and “What are the costs of obesity to the NHS?”

Minimum Entry Requirements

GCSE English Language or English Literature Grade 5, GCSE Mathematics Grade 7. A genuine interest in current affairs is also essential.

Opportunities

Economics is a well-established, academic subject that is highly regarded by employers and universities in the UK and further afield. It can lead to a wide range of interesting careers, which include opportunities in both the public and private sectors.

Combines well with...

Economics will fit with any other subjects but, depending on where your future lies, it combines well with Mathematics, Government & Politics and Geography.

Exam Board Pearson

Economics pushes you to your full potential and is an eye opening subject that changes your perspective on everyday issues. It has changed the way I see the world, showing me the true reality.

 

Summer Task

English Language

Language is a fundamental aspect of our lives as human beings. This is your opportunity to explore the way people use both spoken and written language in all the diverse contexts and cultures that the 21st century offers. You will become an expert in the way written English is used to represent ideas and events, and explore the multiple influences that cause variations in the way English is spoken- both within the UK and around the globe. You will also have opportunities to develop your creative writing skills, and even undertake your own piece of original linguistic research.

Content

  • Creative writing
  • Grammar and morphology
  • Analysis of new types of texts such as tweets, comment threads, etc.
  • Analysis of historical texts
  • Study of Global English
  • Overview of the history of English 
  • Coursework: developing a piece of original linguistic research
  • Analysing texts and transcripts from a wide variety of contemporary contexts
  • Sociolinguistics: the study of the various factors that affect spoken language use, eg. gender, socio-economic group, culture, region, age, occupation, etc. 
  • Study of Child Language Development
  • Exploring attitudes to language change and language variation 

Minimum Entry Requirements

GCSE English combined total of at least 11, with a minimum of Grade 6 in English Language.

Combines well with...

History, Geography, Psychology, English Literature, Government & Politics, Sociology, Art & Design, Art Based Photography. 

Opportunities 

A Level Language is excellent preparation for any career involving the crafting and manipulation of English, especially public relations (PR); journalism (sports, fashion, politics, music, subediting, or any aspect of the magazine industry); website development; copywriting; law; any aspect of media such as television, film, or radio; and, of course, creative writing. The study of child language development is excellent preparation for a career in teaching, psychology and counselling, or working with children in any capacity.

Please note that universities’ admissions teams universally view English Language as having the same prestige and status as English Literature – we checked!

Exam Board AQA

English Language is not only presented in an engaging and intriguing way, but the content itself is fascinating, and has certainly widened my vocabulary, improved my self-expression and increased my understanding of how language is used.

 

Summer Task

English Literature

For voracious readers, word lovers, poets and theatre buffs English Literature is the perfect choice. Studying literature feeds the imagination. It allows you to travel back in time, share the experiences of others, take on new perspectives, explore ideas, beliefs and values, challenge or discover your own and learn the literary skills to express yourself in original and creative ways through dialogue, argument, prose and poetry. The analytical, interpretative and discursive skills you develop by studying literature will also prove excellent preparation for university. A Level English Literature is a highly regarded qualification by universities.

St Peter’s is an exciting and energising place to study English Literature. Students are lively, talented and enthusiastic and all teachers in the Literature team have a genuine passion for their subject. Many of the teachers have written works for publication and encourage their students to engage in the world of English Literature outside school. We offer many enrichment opportunities including theatre visits, trips to London and participation in A Level conferences at other academic establishments.

Content

  • Year 12: Contemporary poems from the Forward collection – Poems of the Decade, A Streetcar Named Desire – Tennessee Williams, Prose fiction – Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte and A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hossieni. You will also be writing your coursework extended essay on two texts of your choice.
  • Year 13: William Shakespeare’s Othello and Chaucer’s The Wife of Bath’s Prologue and Tale.    

Minimum Entry Requirements

GCSE English combined total of at least 11, with a minimum of Grade 6 in English Literature.

Combines well with...

History, Geography, Art & Design, Sociology, Psychology, Drama & Theatre Studies.

Opportunities 

English Literature is a highly regarded A Level that can take students onto almost any course of study. It is an obvious choice for English degree courses but is also an excellent option for those considering arts and humanities subjects, languages, business and law. English Literature graduates go on to pursue careers in publishing, journalism, education at all levels, arts, directing, lexicography and many other careers which demand analysis, original thought and the ability to communicate at a high level.

Exam Board Pearson

Studying English Literature allows you to develop as a reader; understanding subtle nuances through the study of context, craft and meaning makes the texts altogether more enjoyable.

 

Summer Task

Extended Project Qualification

The Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) is a Level 3 Qualification, worth the same as an AS Level. The EPQ is a research-based qualification that is highly valued by Universities and Employers. In essence, you choose a topic to research (something you are passionate about, or a subject specific choice) and begin your work whist being supported by a teacher each week.

Your finished product can take the form of: 

  • A research based written report
  • A production* (eg charity event, fashion show or sports event etc)
  • An artefact* (eg piece of art, a computer game or realised design). 

*A written report must accompany these options. 

Why should I choose EPQ?  

  • To gain access to top univerisites (Many top Universities now lower their entry requirements if you achieve well in your EPQ). 
  • To develop your professional and educational skillset.
  • To demonstrate an ability to think creatively, independent and resourcefully.  
  • It is an opportunity to be awarded a qualification for researching something you love! 

Fashion & Textiles

The Fashion world is a fast changing and exciting industry with more than 79,000 businesses employing over 340,000 people in the UK alone. Fashion & Textiles A Level will develop your knowledge and skills to enable you to design and produce exciting textile products around your personal interests. you will develop a well-rounded understanding of all aspects of the fashion industry; from decorative techniques, pattern cutting, the history of fashion, fashion designers, how fibres and fabrics are made and the ever changing world of smart and technical textiles. 

Content

  • Learn about the wide range of materials in use today.
  • Learn about industry standards, technologies and techniques.
  • Develop skills to create fashion and costumes as well as soft furnishings and decorative textiles.
  • Work for a client to produce a coursework (NEA) folder and finished product.  
  • Explore the work of great designers and influential design movements, by visiting exhibitions, when possible.
  • Develop an understanding of the diversity, environmental, social and ethical issues surrounding Textiles.

Minimum Entry Requirements

GCSE Textiles or Design and Technology Grade 6.If you were unable to study Textiles or Technology at GCSE you will be considered following discussion with the Subject Leader.

Combines well with...

Art & Design, Art Based Photography, Mathematics. 

Opportunities 

The course provides an excellent foundation for a career or further study in the fields of Fashion and Textiles. Future pathways might include costume design, fashion design, clothing technology, fashion buying, textiles design for printed, woven or knitted textiles, fashion buying, journalism and visual merchandising. Some students combine costume design with careers on the stage. Successful textiles students usually go on to a foundation course leading to a fashion, textiles or creative based degree course.

Exam Board AQA

I like being able to design my own creations and see them come to life.

 

Summer Task

French

A Level French builds on the knowledge, understanding and skills gained at GCSE. It fosters a range of transferable skills including communication, critical thinking, research skills and creativity, which are valuable to the individual and society. The course focuses on how French-speaking society has been shaped, socially and culturally, and how it continues to change. Using authentic spoken and written materials, aspects of the social context are studied, together with aspects of the artistic life of French-speaking countries.

Content

  • Social Issues and Trends
  • Political and artistic culture
  • Literary Texts and Films
  • Grammar 

Minimum Entry Requirements

GCSE French Grade 6.

Combines well with...

Languages really come into their own when set alongside expertise in another field. It is therefore reasonable to suggest that French will combine well with any other A Level subjects. 

Opportunities

Specialist language occupations include interpreting, translating and teaching. However, in an increasingly international environment, practically any job (whether based in the UK or abroad) can involve the use of languages. For those who go on to higher education, it is possible to study French alongside a wide range of other subjects.

Exam Board AQA

Studying French opens your eyes to the world of possibility; your knowledge will grow beyond just the language.

 

Summer Task

Further Mathematics

The Further Mathematics Linear A Level aims to provide a deeper insight into the vast and mesmerising world of mathematics. The course goes far beyond the need to know day to day basics. It is designed for those who have a real interest and excitement in mathematics and goes some way to introduce you to branches of mathematics that few ever witness let alone master. This said, interest and self-motivation remain the most necessary skills to possess in order to succeed here. Ability alone is not what we are looking for. This one year course follows the fast track one year Mathematics A Level course and offers suitable candidates the opportunity to arm themselves with two of the most prestigious A Levels on offer.

Content

Further Mathematics is where much of the rigorous Mathematics is fully appreciated. It will open your eyes to a world of numbers and areas of Mathematics that most people are simply unaware even exist. Studying Further Mathematics is to give your brain an opportunity to grasp what few can, and develop your mind as one based on logic and reasoning, skills that are hugely sought after in the world of employment.

Students taking Further Mathematics overwhelmingly find it to be an enjoyable, rewarding, stimulating and empowering experience. If you enjoy Mathematics, it provides a challenge and a chance to explore new and/or more sophisticated mathematical concepts. Students who take Further Mathematics find it makes the transition from Sixth Form to university courses which are mathematically rich that much easier.

Minimum Entry Requirements

GCSE Mathematics Grade 8. Further Mathematics A Level is a one year course in Year 13, taken by students who have already achieved the full Mathematics A Level in Year 12. This course must be taken in conjunction with A Level Mathematics. 

Combines well with...

Economics, Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry, Product Design.

Opportunities

Engineering, Sciences, Computing, Finance and Economics.

Exam Board OCR

With the help of remarkable teachers, you will step into one of the most rewarding A Levels with ease.

 

Summer Task

Geography 

Geography A Level is a well regarded contemporary academic subject with practical problem-solving skills developed as part of fieldwork opportunities. Geography is recognised as a facilitating subject by Russell Group Universities.  

Content

  • Human geography:  Changing places, Contemporary Urban environments & Global governance.
  • Physical geography: Hazards, Carbon & Water Cycle, Coasts.
  • An independent fieldwork project based on an area of personal interest.     

Minimum Entry Requirements

GCSE Geography Grade 6 or in another Humanities subject if you did not take GCSE Geography.

Combines well with...

Geography sits comfortably in between the arts & science subjects so ties in well with many other subject areas.

Opportunities

Geography is a really versatile subject. Recent students of Geography have gone on to do degrees at a range of universities, apprenticeships with national retail organisations, working for financial institutions, pilot, travel and of course teaching!

Exam Board AQA

You learn about the world we live in, in ways you’ve never experienced before.

 

Summer Task

Government & Politics

Government & Politics will enable you to understand the world around you. What is the impact of Brexit going to be? How powerful is Donald Trump? Could the political system be better? These are all questions that have competing answers. To be able to offer a response you must have the ability to attain in-depth knowledge and be able to evaluate evidence to reach substantiated judgments on a range of political issues. 

This academic skill-set is highly valued by both universities and employers; and will complement other academic A Level subjects.  

Content

  • British politics
  • Political ideologies
  • American politics

You will have the capacity to work both independently and collaboratively; but most importantly you will be open minded; prepared to read and listen to a range of viewpoints, as you consistently up-date your own in order to be able to answer theoretical political questions. 

Minimum Entry Requirements

GCSE English Literature or History Grade 6.

Combines well with...

History, Economics, Geography, English Language, English Literature.

Opportunities    

Journalism, civil service, political research, academia, education, business.

Exam Board Pearson

Studying Government & Politics has given me an insight in the world that I never knew existed, and at times had taken for granted.

 

Summer Task

History

History is a fascinating subject which will enrich you as a person and make you valuable to any university or employer in the future. In our world of ‘fake news’ and the endless availability of competing experts, it is more important than ever to be able to discern the true value of information. Historians are trained to think independently and critically. In A Level History you will develop and enhance vital transferable skills, as well as reaching a greater understanding of humanity and how modern societies have developed.

Content

  • Tudor England 1485-1603. You will gain an understanding of how a little known noble managed to gain the crown of England and establish the most iconic and well-known dynasty in British History. 
  • Development, key events and end of the Cold War from 1945-1991. You will be immersed in the ideological conflict which nearly brought the world to nuclear ruin and gain an appreciation of how and why the conflict developed and eventually ended. 
  • We run a summer trip to the most famous Tudor site, Hampton Court Palace in Year 12 to develop your understanding of the Tudor World.    

Minimum Entry Requirements

GCSE History Grade 6. Students with no GCSE History will require GCSE English Literature Grade 7.

Combines well with...    

Government & Politics, Economics, English Literature, Geography and Psychology.

Opportunities 

History is a highly respected and valued subject by Universities and employers. History is recognised as one of the key ’facilitating’ subjects recommended by Russell Group Universities due to its range of valuable transferable skills. 

The skills you develop in History will be useful in any job, though popular careers include: Historian, Lawyer, Police, Civil Service, Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Politics, Journalism, Researcher.

Exam Board AQA

History is the most engaging and fascinating subject I take and the History Department is fantastic.

 

Summer Task

Mathematics

Mathematics is a discipline, and a tool which is being increasingly used in industry to solve problems. Although not all of the subject content is always directly relevant to future employment, the fact that a student has succeeded at this subject shows that they have developed skills that are highly regarded. This subject is therefore the most versatile qualification for further education and employment. This A Level will take you from being competent at Mathematics for everyday needs to an awareness of techniques that enable people to develop new ideas for the benefit of mankind in the future.

Content

We offer a two year linear A Level qualification, combining the pure and applied elements of Mathematics, offering an insight into how the mechanics and statistical elements we have hinge around the purest of mathematical concepts. The course aims to deepen your mind and offers you an opportunity to ponder those curious questions and give you the rare skills to solve many complex problems that are relevant to the world today. This is an academic subject and will involve a large amount of teacher input. However, the style of teaching will be more informal than at GCSE and you are expected to take responsibility for your learning. There will always be support, but the more you put in the more you will achieve.

Minimum Entry Requirements

GCSE Mathematics Grade 7.

Combines well with...

Economics, Further Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry, Product Design.

Opportunities 

Mathematics will qualify you for many university courses; only a small number actually go on to specialise in it. For many science, engineering and medical courses Mathematics A Level is a requirement. Many non-mathematical courses have a statistical element and we frequently hear from past students who tell us that they benefitted from doing the A Level.

We also offer a combined Mathematics and Further Mathematics course where students achieve A Level Mathematics in Year 12 and A Level Further Mathematics in Year 13.

Exam Board OCR

This course is varied and rewarding. The material covered is useful in a wide variety of other A Level options, especially the sciences.

 

Summer Task

Music

Music A Level is designed to allow you to pursue your own musical interests. Practical skills as a musician are central to this course, to actively engage in the process of studying music. You will develop your critical ear, performance skills, ability to compose music and manipulate musical ideas. You will build up your aural and analytical skills by studying contrasting genres, styles and traditions, developing understanding of musical contexts and a coherent awareness of music chronology. 

Content

Music is a social subject, which promotes an engagement with music in order to promote personal, social, intellectual and cultural development. This course will broaden your awareness of music from different styles and cultures, improve your performance skills, and allow you to pursue your composition interests. You will develop your confidence in front of an audience and improve your planning and prioritisation skills.

Minimum Entry Requirements

GCSE Music Grade 6 or extensive evidence of current musical performance.

Combines well with...

Irrespective of whether you intend to study Music at Undergraduate level, Music A Level is highly sort after by top universities, due to the critical thinking and practical skills that are developed throughout the course. As such, Music combines well with all subjects, from other Performing Arts, to Mathematics, Sciences, Humanities and beyond.

Opportunities

Studying a Music degree at university or a diploma or college performance course. It can lead to careers in teaching, music production, music therapy or music management.

Exam Board Eduqas

A Level Music gives you so much more than just musical understanding. You become more creative, outgoing and confident.

 

Summer Task

Philosophy & Ethics

A Level Philosophy, Christianity & Ethics will encourage you to think expansively and will elevate your capacity to communicate. You will be questioning previously held notions of morality, God and religion. The development of the love of wisdom that this course offers is mind transforming.

Content

The basis for the course is sacred texts and the philosophical and ethical theories of famous philosophers such as Aristotle, Descartes and Jeremy Bentham as well famous theologians such as St Thomas Aquinas and Bernard Hoose. “I think therefore I am” by Rene Descartes and the Great Thinker are well known philosophical ideals which apply to everyone. A desire to read, write, listen and think with reason and balance will make this subject enjoyable and you successful. A Level Philosophy, Christianity & Ethics is not an extension of GCSE Religious Education. Nearly all the topics will be brand new to you and you will explore the great thinkers over time. There is also the opportunity to lead and participate in the Philosophy Club. 

Minimum Entry Requirements

GCSE Religious Studies Grade 6 plus Grade 6 in either GCSE English Language, English Literature or History.

Combines well with...

History, Government & Politics, English Language  and English Literature.

Opportunities

Literacy, reasoning and ethical evaluation is ideal for Politics, the Police force, Law, Journalism, research, writing of any genre and teaching. 

Exam Board Eduqas

Ethics has given me insight into the way in which society engages with controversial issues. Philosophy has allowed me to explore the arguments for the existence of God. My faith and moral standing has, to some extent, been dismantled and reshaped.

 

Summer Task

Physical Education

Physical Education is a really diverse subject. The course offers an excellent insight into all the scientific aspects of sporting performance. Whether you are looking to increase your understanding of exercise physiology and performance in competition, improve your mental approach to performance through sports psychology, or simply learn more about the socio-cultural issues affecting sports participation and elite performance, this course is for you. 

Content

  • The beneficial effects of a healthy lifestyle which includes subjects like the physiological effects of exercise and how people acquire sports skills.
  • The current issues influencing sport today and how elite athletes optimise their performance physically and psychologically.

Minimum Entry Requirements

GCSE Physical Education Grade 6 or BTEC Level 2 Diploma Distinction. Students must also play a sport outside of school.

Combines well with...

Biology, Health and Social care, Psychology.

Opportunities

The course is an ideal starting point if you wish to study a sports related degree at university, coaching, teaching or physiotherapy.

Exam Board AQA

I have really enjoyed the variety of disciplines studied within just one subject.

 

Summer Task

Physics

A Level Physics involves you attempting to understand the world around you. You will find out how 3D glasses work, why fluorescent materials look brighter, how we have our own wavelength, what superconductors are used for and the amazing way that forces work to keep us alive! You will learn to apply Physics concepts to practical problem solving. Theory is developed through a large variety of practical experiences and demonstrations. 

Content 

Over two years you will be exposed to a variety of fascinating Physics topics. These include wave-particle duality, collisions, explosions, cloud chambers, superconductors, nuclear radiation, manipulating waves and harnessing the power of stars for unlimited energy. Studying Physics allows you to ask big questions, make accurate observations, evaluate evidence and solve problems. A Level Physics is a challenge but ultimately very rewarding. 

Minimum Entry Requirements

GCSE Physics Grade 6 or Combined Science (Trilogy) Grade 6-6. Plus GCSE Mathematics Grade 6. If you are planning on studying more than one Science at A Level, we recommend that you have Grade 7’s in these at GCSE.

Combines well with...

Mathematics, Chemistry.

Opportunities    

An A Level qualification in Physics is the key that opens the door to a surprisingly large number of careers. These include aviation, engineering, computing, the medical profession, accounting and meteorology. 

A Level Physics is highly regarded academically and is a preferred entry requirement to many universities. A Level Physics shows that you have an analytical mind and can problem solve – which is key to many professions (not necessarily Physics related).

Exam Board AQA

Physics is very interesting and expands your mind. The technical aspects and the details involved are incredible. I enjoy the practical work and the teachers are very helpful.

 

Summer Task

Product Design

Global development is creating many challenges to the designer relating to environmental issues. On this course you will gain experience in designing for real world situations, analysing products on the market, and researching current global issues. This will involve developing visual communication skills and using computer aided design to visualise and model the products you create. You will be given the opportunity to manufacture two and three dimensional products to a high standard, aiming for quality at all levels. Product Design will provide the skills to design and manufacture products whilst developing your time and project management skills.

Content

  • You will produce designs and concept models of real world products using a range of materials and processes. 
  • The course also requires the design and development of both 2D and 3D products and to fulfil this you will have to communicate using a range of media, including computer aided design. 
  • In addition you will study industrial and material manufacturing techniques, communicating your ideas with a design folio and a written case study.
  • You will design and make a solution for a real world situation and you will produce a fully functional end product that can be tested against the specification that you developed. The products produced can be created in any resistant material or appropriate combinations of them. In addition, you will study industrial and material manufacturing techniques, communicating your ideas with a design folio and a written case study.

Minimum Entry Requirements

Grade 6 in a Technology subject. Students who were unable to study a Technology subject will be considered following discussion with the Subject Leader.

Combines well with...

Art & Design, Mathematics, Physics.

Opportunities

Past students have moved on to study a wide range of courses such as computer game design, materials science, animation, architectural modelling, industrial product design, vehicle design and marine engineering. Quite often work produced during this course has helped students at interview and in some cases led to unconditional offers being made.

Exam Board AQA

This is for you if you’re creative and enjoy practical work.

 

Summer Task

Psychology

Psychology provides an insightful and intriguing explanation of mind and behaviour. Have you ever wondered: how far people would go to obey an authority figure and why; why do riots occur; are the brains of murderers different to the brains of non-murderers? You will have the opportunity to learn in a variety of ways, through virtual learning, independent study and classroom teaching. Amongst many other learning styles, you will gain experience in role play, mind-mapping, debating and discussing, presenting work and conducting your own psychological research.

Content

Psychology will help you to better understand yourself and the people around you. You will explore a wide range of psychological research, including studies and theories by some famous psychologists. Areas such as prejudice, discrimination and obedience are investigated along with Criminological Psychology (forensic), which seeks to aid our understanding of why people turn to crime and Clinical Psychology which focusses on mental health disorders and how they can be diagnosed. You will be encouraged to achieve your individual potential and set your own targets for progression. Teacher expectations are high and you are expected to become an independent thinker and learner. You will develop transferable life skills such as evaluating and applying research and theories to real life, essay writing and understanding how to conduct your own psychological research, alongside opportunities to take part in a number of trips and visits.

Minimum Entry Requirements

GCSE English combined total of at least 11, plus GCSE Grade 6 in either Mathematics, Biology or Chemistry. 

Combines well with...

Biology, Chemistry, Health and Social Care, Mathematics, Physical Education, Sociology.

Opportunities

The course provides an excellent basis for a career or further study in many occupations. You may choose to specialise in a particular area of psychology, or utilise your qualification more broadly in other areas such as personnel, human resources, child care or the police force.

Exam Board Pearson

Psychology allows you to trace back to what triggers certain behaviours in people for a wider understanding of the condition.

 

Summer Task

Sociology

Sociology is the study of the origin, development, organisation and functioning of human society. It looks at the science of the fundamental laws of social relations and institutions such as the education system, the justice system and families. Sociology investigates a range of topics such as: gender, stereotyping, race and ethnicity, social inequality, racism, sexism, domestic violence, lone parents, marriage and divorce and childhood, just to name a few! These are all explored using theories and real-life examples that are written about, as well as debated.

Content 

Sociology will help you have a greater insight into communities and relationships. It will give you an insight into how humans interact with each other, both in this country and across the world. There is also a focus on Government statistics regarding what is happening here in the UK. 

Learn about Sociologists’ theories and research; apply analytical and evaluative skills to the topics covered; improve your essay writing skills; complete group work; independent work; and experience a variety of teaching methods in the classroom.

Minimum Entry Requirements

11 as a combined score for GCSE English Language and GCSE English Literature.

Combines well with...

Economics, English, Health and Social Care, History,  Philosophy & Ethics, Politics, Psychology.

Opportunities 

There are many opportunities that arise from gaining a sociology qualification, often students go onto further study or careers within the business or financial industry, or careers related to marketing or journalism. There are many public areas that benefit from an understanding of sociology, such as: working within prisons, education and the health service.

Exam Board AQA

It’s fascinating studying the way in which human beings are shaped by economics, gender, social inequality, environment, social norms and deviance — all things you cannot see.

 

Summer Task

Spanish

Globalisation of world markets and increasing opportunities for travel are creating an environment in which language skills can open more and more doors. Spanish A Level builds on the knowledge, understanding and skills gained at GCSE. The course focuses on how Spanish-speaking society has been shaped, socially and culturally, and how it continues to change. Using authentic spoken and written materials, aspects of the social context are studied, together with aspects of the artistic life of Spanish-speaking countries. It fosters a range of transferable skills including communication, critical thinking, research skills and creativity, which are valuable to the individual and society. 

Content

  • Political and artistic culture
  • Literary Texts and Films
  • Grammar

Minimum Entry Requirements 

GCSE Spanish Grade 6.

Combines well with...

Languages really come into their own when set alongside expertise in another field. It is therefore reasonable to suggest that Spanish combines well with all other A Levels.

Opportunities

Specialist language occupations include interpreting, translating and teaching. However, in an increasingly international environment, practically any job (whether based in the UK or abroad) can involve the use of languages. For those who go on to higher education, it is possible to study Spanish alongside a wide range of other subjects.

Exam Board AQA

Spanish is an interactive and exciting subject with interesting, expansive and relevant topics. Challenging and new ideas are covered such as the history of Spain and other Hispanic countries together with the film industry.

 

Summer Task

 

VOCATIONAL COURSES

BTEC DIPLOMA IN SPORT

BTEC Sport is an exciting diverse qualification suited to those who have a passion for sport and are considering a future career in this field.  

Content

The BTEC National Diploma in Sport is a vocational course that teaches students the knowledge required to pursue a career in sport. It is the equivalent of two A Levels. Students spend time in both the classroom and in practical lessons developing their knowledge and skills. Students learn in a positive and fun learning environment with opportunities to learn from professionals who work in the sports industry.

Students study four units in Year 12: Anatomy and physiology, Fitness training and programming, Professional development in the sports industry and Sports Leadership. Students study five units in Year 13: Business in sport, Skill acquisition, Fitness testing, Rules and regulations and Coaching for performance.

Minimum Entry Requirements 

GCSE Physical Education Grade 5 and Grade 5 in either English Language or English Literature.

Combines well with...

Biology, BTEC Business Marketing, Health & Social Care.

Opportunities 

You will gain a qualification that will enable you to study sports related degrees at university, such as Sports Management, Sports Therapy, PE Teaching, Sports Coaching, Analysis of Sport and Physiotherapy. This qualification is particularly appropriate for learners who are interested in progressing to a career in sport and physical activity development. 

Exam Board Pearson

I love the variety of units in BTEC Sport. If you work hard and enjoy sport this course is for you!

 

Summer Task

BTEC PERFORMING ARTS

BTEC Performing Arts is a double award that gives you the training needed for working in the Performing Arts Industry. This vocational course is underpinned with current industry practice and is a way to prepare robustly for further training in the Arts. This is a highly practical course which also gives you a strong university standard grounding in the theory behind the next level of study and an opportunity to work with industry professionals. We teach in professional standard facilities with a 470 seat theatre, dance studio and a range of drama studios.

Content 

You will cover eight units in all three disciplines allowing you to develop skills as a triple theatre performer. Units in Dance, Singing and Acting are covered focusing on the professional that the industry is currently looking for and we aim to tailor your training to suit current professional practice.

Minimum Entry Requirements 

GCSE Drama and GCSE Dance Grade 5 or equivalent experience or a Performing Arts Level 2 qualification at Merit or Distinction. Plus GCSE English Grade 5.

Combines well with...

Drama & Theatre Studies, Dance, Music, English and other BTEC qualifications such as BTEC Sport.

Opportunities

Professional training in Acting, Dance and Musical Theatre at the leading institutions. Recent graduates of this course have gone on to attend Urdang, Bird, Arts Ed, Italia Conti, Laine and other leading institutions in performance training. Other leading University courses in Performing Arts or production. Other university courses where communication and presentation skills are encouraged. Careers in Performing (actor, dancer, Musical Theatre). 

Creative Industries make up more than 5% of the UK economy which is more than the automotive, life science, aerospace, oil and gas sectors combined and accounts for 1 in 11 jobs across the UK. The industry is at low risk of automation compared to some others and therefore is a thriving career progression route.

Exam Board Pearson

Performing Arts introduces you to practitioners who are creating work now and are the future of performance, which forms an excellent step into the industry. 

 

Summer Task

HEALTH & SOCIAL CARE

Do you want to be a primary teacher? Nurse? Midwife? Social worker? Occupational therapist? Health and Social Care is a vocational Level 3 qualification for students considering careers in health and social care and education. There are two possible qualifications: the Extended Certificate route which is equivalent to one A Level and the Diploma route which is equivalent to two A Levels. 

Content

  • Topic areas relate directly to the work place. You will learn about laws, policies and care values which underpin professional practice and protect individuals. These include safeguarding, security and the promotion of diversity. 
  • You will apply your knowledge to real situations. The information needed for portfolio work cannot be found exclusively in textbooks and demands accessing real case studies; interviewing professionals and using placement experience. Placements are encouraged. 
  • You will produce portfolios, worth 40% of the course, using a range of resources with professional referencing. Health and Social Care promotes the skills of researching and drafting coursework. This is ideal preparation for dissertation work at university.
  • Moreover, portfolio work can be adapted to reflect career interests. You will explore how to build relationships in the health and social care setting of your choice. 
  • The mandatory Anatomy and Physiology unit introduces you to the basic structure and functions of the body systems involved in everyday activities and maintenance of health, including cardiovascular, respiratory and digestive systems.
  • You will understand the effects of malfunctions of these systems on individuals and what has to be done on a daily basis to enable them to lead as full and independent a life as possible. 

Minimum Entry Requirements 

GCSE English combined total of at least 10 and Distinction or GCSE Grade 5 in a subject which includes coursework.

Combines well with...

Psychology, Sociology, Art & Design, Biology.

Opportunities 

Nursing, Midwifery, Primary Teaching and other health and social care careers such as Occupational Therapy and Social Work. Past students reassure us that this Health and Social Care course provides excellent preparation for university courses.

Exam Board OCR

Health and Social Care has really improved all aspects of my learning from research and essay skills to communication. The teachers have a clear passion for the subject and support you every step of the way.

 

Summer Task

CAMBRIDGE TECHNICALS BUSINESS

The Cambridge Technicals Level 3 Business has been developed to meet the changing needs of the sector, and prepare you for the challenges you’ll face in Higher Education or employment. Designed in collaboration with experts spanning the breadth of the sector, the Cambridge Technicals in Business focuses on the skills, knowledge and understanding that today’s universities and employers demand.  

Content

You will learn how a business might evolve. From a small start-up business to a large multinational organisation, you will consider a range of different business types and gain an understanding of how the choice of business type might affect the objectives that are set. You will also look at the internal workings of businesses, including their internal structure and how different functional areas work together. Plus, by looking at the external constraints under which a business must operate, you will gain an understanding of the legal, financial and ethical factors that have an impact. You  will also explore ways in which businesses respond to changes in their economic, social and technological environment; and gain an appreciation of the influence different stakeholders can have upon a business.

Minimum Entry Requirements

Five GCSEs at Grade 4.

Combines well with...

Business, Art & Design, Economics, English Language, Sociology.

Opportunities 

Marketing Consultant/Executive, Business Development Executive, Fundraiser, Market Research Analyst, Sales Manager, Conference Co-Coordinator, Exhibition Organiser, Hospitality Manager and Event Organiser. Technical Level Qualifications are specifically designed to enable learners aged 16+ to progress into employment, join an apprenticeship or enter university.  

Exam Board OCR

Level 3 Business has given me the opportunity to become entrepreneurial and succinct in my work.

 

Summer Task

 

ENRICHMENT OPTIONS

EXTENDED PROJECT QUALIFICATION

The Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) is a Level 3 Qualification, worth the same as an AS Level. The EPQ is a research-based qualification that is highly valued by Universities and Employers. In essence, you choose a topic to research (something you are passionate about, or a subject specific choice) and begin your work whist being supported by a teacher each week.

Your finished product can take the form of: 

  • A research based written report
  • A production* (eg charity event, fashion show or sports event etc)
  • An artefact* (eg piece of art, a computer game or realised design). 

*A written report must accompany these options. 

Why should I choose EPQ?  

  • To gain access to top univerisites (Many top Universities now lower their entry requirements if you achieve well in your EPQ). 
  • To develop your professional and educational skillset.
  • To demonstrate an ability to think creatively, independent and resourcefully.  
  • It is an opportunity to be awarded a qualification for researching something you love!

SPORTS LEADERS

Sports Leaders (Level 3 Higher) HSL3 is a nationally recognised qualification that enables successful learners to independently lead purposeful and enjoyable sport/physical activity. 

This course is run over Year 12 and 13 within the enrichment time. Students will learn how to deliver fun and engaging physical activities with other students and within the community. Students will plan, lead and evaluate sports/physical activity sessions over a number of tutored hours and then demonstrate their leadership skills as part of their assessment. 

On completion of the course, students gain 16 UCAS points.  

I would never have pictured myself being able to lead a class of Year 3 students when I signed up for Sports Leaders a year ago. Now it is one of the highlights of my week and I get so much from working with younger children.