For A-Level Art and Design there are 3 courses that can be followed – Fine Art, Graphic Communication, or Three Dimensional Design.
The Fine Art course involves experimental media, drawing, painting, print making or sculpture and the course is tailored to the strengths of each student. The Graphic communication course involves communication graphics, advertising and illustration focus and involves the use of Photoshop and text in the final presentation of work. The Three dimensional design course involves interior and architectural design, model making and presentation graphics (some CAD / Photoshop used in presentation of designs)
All students have their own studio space to enable them to develop their skills through independent study and both courses include visits to galleries and related workshops.
Students produce a portfolio of work which will includes sketch books, work books and journals along with an extended collection of work showing the students’ ability to research and develop ideas. The coursework component includes critical analysis, drawing, project development through sketchbooks, experimental studies and resolutions within the disciplines associated with the specialism chosen. An essay of 1000-3000 words is completed in the second year directly related to a ‘Personal investigation’ which is based on an issue or theme of personal interest. The work leading to, and developed from, the personal investigation is worth 60% of the overall grade. The final exam component, worth 40% of the overall grade, takes the form of an externally set project which includes a preparation period followed by a 15 hour controlled assessment.
An A-Level in Art and Design provides foundation skills for a wide range of careers that involve the visual arts, and for many other occupations. Students in the past have gone on to careers as animators, architects, art therapists, community arts workers, costume designers, design engineers, illustrators, and work related to television and film.