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Key Stage 4 Art

Year 9 GCSE Options Choices

In Year 8 students will get the choice as to whether they want to continue with Art or Design Technology in Year 9.  We currently offer the following courses: GCSE Art & Design and GCSE Art Textiles.


GCSE Art & Design

The GCSE Art & Design exam board is Edexcel and the course is made up of two units; Unit 1 is coursework and worth 60% of the overall grade and Unit 2 is the external assignment, worth 40%.  In Year 9 students explore the theme 'The City' and create 4 mini outcomes using different materials and techniques including monoprinting onto collage, clay sculpture, lino printing and painting.  Throughout the year students will also be working in a sketchbook developing ideas, analysing artists practicing techniques, demonstrating drawing and designing.  At the end of the year students will create one of the outcomes during a 10 hour exam period spread across two days.

At the end of Year 10 students begin a new project, still part of their coursework unit based on the theme 'Natural World'.  They will have the choice of working in two different mediums; clay or dry-point engraving.  Sketchbooks are used to show workings but are now A3 sized to encourage larger-scale work.  Students will create their outcome during a 10 hour exam period spread across two days.  In February students are given the external assignment, a theme which is set by the exam board. Students have 10 school weeks to prepare for the 10 hour external exam.  Students will choose the direction of the assignment and medium they wish to use.  Sketchbooks are still important and evidence their ability to develop ideas, analyse artists, experiment with materials, demonstrate drawing ability and design their exam piece.


GCSE Art Textiles

The GCSE Art Textiles exam board is AQA which is made up of two units, Unit 1 is coursework which is worth 60% of the overall grade and Unit 2 is an externally set project worth 40%.  Unit 1 comprises of two projects exploring the themes of ‘Urban Surroundings’ and ‘Nature’.  Students begin all investigations through drawing, collage and painting; this aids their ideas and is the basis from which they produce practical samples.  ‘Urban Surroundings’ is explored through stitch techniques such as hand embroidery, applique and sewing machine work including free hand embroidery stitch.  Print and mark making is the focus within the ‘Nature’ project experimenting with poly-block, lino, dry-point engraving, stencil, collagraph and batik.  Students explore various contemporary and traditional artists and crafts people and demonstrate their understanding through analysis and practical outcomes.  Students produce a final piece for each project completed under exam conditions within ten hours.  The externally set project is distributed in February in the final year of the GCSE; the theme and process is set by the exam board.  Students have ten school weeks to prepare for the ten hour external exam, where they complete preparatory work with the support and guidance of the teacher. 


The National Art & Design Saturday Drawing School Programme

We also offer the opportunity to apply for an extra-curricular programme called The National Art & Design Saturday Drawing School for those studying any of our Art or design related courses.  The course is a fantastic free programme that gives students the opportunity to visit universities, meet the lecturers and work with successful artists working in the creative industries.  If students successfully complete the 17 week programme they will also gain a Level 2 Drawing qualification. The course not only benefits their skills but gives them a rare exciting glimpse of where their future career might end up.