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Name of subject: Graphics

Examination board: AQA

Qualification: A Level

Entry requirements: Minimum of 5+ grade9-5 at GCSE in English and at least one Art based subject such as Graphics, Photography, Art or Textiles.

Description of the course (Overview):

The course comprises of 60% coursework with an externally set assignment in the second year consisting of an 8 week preparatory period followed by a three day exam which constitutes 40% of the final grade. Students are required to be independent and explore their own ideas inspired by the work of others. Visits to exhibitions and design agencies take place regularly during the both years of the course. At the end of each year students work is exhibited as part of our exciting and professionally organised KS5 exhibition.

What topics will students cover?

Year 12: Students will complete a variety of projects, all of which produce coursework evidence. At the start of the course students will complete experimental workshops exploring and developing the key design disciplines of typography, illustration, layout and digital media. This is followed by two projects for which themes change yearly in response to current design trends and exhibitions in and around London. Projects are engaging, relevant and current.

Year 13: Students develop their own individual ideas for both a practical and personal study, both of which are additional coursework components. The ideas for their work evolve from their Year 12 work and personal interests in the subject. Their development is monitored through 1:1 critiques with the course tutors. Students are expected to visit exhibitions and design agencies independently to support them in forming their own, personal and well developed opinions about their own and others graphic design and illustration work.

What skills will they particularly develop?

Students are encouraged and expected to be independent as well as keep up to date with design news and trends during the duration of the course. Students are integral to the curation of the exhibition each year as well as being responsible for organising the printing and presentation of their work. Through practical based projects students develop a detailed understanding of the design process and its applications through digital design using professional software.

Careers and progression: On completion of the course, students can progress onto a variety of Art Foundation or degree courses choosing to specialise in Graphics, Photography, Animation, Illustration and/or Media. During the course, students will have access to a range of career and further/higher education opportunities through which to support them in developing both their skills and routes for progression. Students are advised and supported in preparing their UCAS/College applications identifying appropriate routes and portfolio preparation.

Enrichment activities

Each student is expected to visit a minimum of 4 exhibitions/design agencies each year. The course tutor will lead some of these, and others will occur independently in students’ own time. Work seen in galleries or the workplace has a direct impact on students own work. Keeping up to date with design news and current trends within the industry is a necessary and integral part of the course. Excursions to and visits from working practitioners will also take place during various points of the year with the potential to organise or support students seeking work placements during Easter and Summer breaks.