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Canon Slade School

Canon Slade School As a Church of England School, we seek to provide
an excellent education within a Christian environment
to fulfil individual potential and to prepare pupils
for life and service in a rapidly changing world. Ora et Labora
Pray and Work

Art and Design - A Level

What does the course aim to do?

The course Art and Design A Level course encourages a broad approach, which allows candidates to develop a sound grounding in a number of areas while still exploring the subject in depth. The specification builds on the skills, knowledge and understanding acquired through the GCSE Art course.

The aims of the course are to encourage candidates to:

  • develop intellectual, imaginative, creative and intuitive powers; investigative, analytical, experimental, technical and expressive skills, aesthetic understanding and critical judgement;
  • develop knowledge and understanding of the role and achievements of artists, craftspeople and designers in the past and in contemporary society.

What will I be studying?

You will work in two of the three areas offered at Canon Slade (Fine Art, 3D/ceramics and Textiles /Mixed Media). In the early stages of year 12 you will experiment with a wide range of media and techniques. You will propose your own project and work in partnership with Art staff to develop ideas and fulfil the assessment criteria. 

How will I be assessed?

 All units are assessed by the Art Department and moderated by an external examiner. Coursework accounts for 60% of the overall mark, Controlled Assignments account for 40%

Practical Portfolio

You produce coursework on a theme of your choosing in your two areas of study. There is no limit to the amount of work you can produce providing you have outcomes from both areas. Your work must include one short written component which relates to your theme (up to 3,000 words).

Externally Set Task

Responding to a theme set by OCR, you will produce coursework in both your areas of study and one outcome from either area. This outcome must be produced in 15 hours.

Where will it lead in the future?

An excellent qualification for College of Art & Design Foundation Courses which lead to an Honors Degree in a chosen area of study. Ex-pupils have gone on to study Architecture, Teaching, Marketing, Print Management, Interior Design, 3D Design, and various media and communications-related courses. Others are employed in the Graphics, Fashion, Textiles and Advertising industries. The A Level is accepted by most universities.

How will I study?

There will be taught courses in practice and theory. You will undertake practical work in the Art Studios by completion of projects in line with your own interests and the demands of the specification. Written preparation for the Personal Investigation is collated through notes, background reading and gallery visits to Manchester Whitworth and City Art galleries. Yorkshire sculpture park. Manchester museum and Manchester Museum of Science and Industry, to look at and study Artists work, take photographs and produce observation drawing. You will be expected to keep sketch books and to record visual information.

What will I need to do myself?

Practical homework assignments are flexible in time and can vary from one to six weeks. Essay writing and reading tasks are also set. You should keep strictly to homework deadlines if you aim to reach the highest level. Extra time spent in the Art Studios will be of benefit to all students the best students tend to spend at least three hours in addition to lesson time working on the subject.

Why should I come to Canon Slade to study Art & Design?

From very early in the course you will be encouraged to pursue your own ideas and interests through your work. In recent years students have explored topics as diverse as personal identity, battery farming, the ages of woman, detective films the bubonic plague, terrorism, science fiction, public transport, sport and fairy tales.

Staff are always there to offer advice, support and direction when needed. The department has strong links with other institutes of higher education, notably Pendleton College Art Foundation course and Blackburn college Art Foundation Course. Well over half the students who complete the course progress to study an aspect of art or design at University. This year a number of students are studying Architecture. Results are very good in recent years a number of students have been awarded 100% for the practical aspects of the exam. Finally, it's fun! Hard work, there is always plenty to do, but it is very rewarding.