Exam board: AQA

Students will learn to explore the power of photography to convey ideas and emotions, and in doing so, develop skills as independent learners. The photography department is well resourced with comprehensive digital resources, an extensive reference library and a traditional darkroom.

Course content:

Component 1 (60%), a self-set, in-depth, personal investigation building on the skills and cultural knowledge developed in the early weeks of the course and lasting for 4 terms, and Component 2 (40%), an assignment set (from a choice of topics) by the exam board. The emphasis is on the development of skills to enable the production of creative images in a personal style. Students will learn both digital and traditional techniques. They will also gain a thorough appreciation of the development of photography since its invention and knowledge of the great photographers, past and present. They will be encouraged to try as many genres as possible, such as portraiture, landscapes, still life and reportage.

Component 2 lasts for about 12 weeks in Year 13 and concludes with 15 hours of supervised, unaided work where students fully realize their intentions with high quality finished work.

Entry requirements:

Grade 6 at GCSE in a creative subject. Other students will be considered on an individual basis. Interview with presentation of examples of work.

Progression routes and careers:

It has been said that most new jobs created by the end of this decade with be in the creative sector. An A Level in photography can lead on to a photography degree or an art foundation course. The knowledge of photography and the high level of visual awareness that students will have developed could lead on to many careers in the creative sector, such as graphic design, advertising, new media, film-making, animation, architecture and, of course, professional photography.

Trips and Visits:

To stimulate and inspire the students both courses are supported by gallery trips, both regional and further afield. Students are encouraged to enter competitions as and when they occur. We endeavour to provide one opportunity for the students to experience an overseas residential trip in Europe during the two years of their A Level course.

Curriculum Map

Curriculum map KS5 current photo