Art at A level is a very popular subject at the Langton. There are currently 60 students in the sixth form taking the subject, and approximately half this number are students new to Simon Langton Boys School. Any visitor to the school cannot help be impressed by the quality of the A level work on display, and year on year the A level grades reflect this. This summer nearly 40% of all students achieved an A grade and above in A level Art, and 85% achieved B or above. As in previous years, no students got below a C grade.
Students undertake a quick four week introduction course at the beginning of Year 12, giving them an opportunity to get to know their way round the department and get to know each other. The purpose-built designated sixth form art room is always a lively place to be in and the students undoubtedly benefit from the creative atmosphere that they all help create. Whether it’s down to the finished work on the walls, or unfinished work on easels, students quickly find the sixth form room a very inspiring place to study. There is also a purpose built gallery within the Art Block, giving students the opportunity to see their work exhibited and also giving some the opportunity to curate their own show. Sixth form artwork is uploaded daily onto the school’s art Instagram site, thelangtonart. Every year we take the sixth form artists to exhibitions in London, to see, and be inspired by works on show.
The Edexcel A level course consists of two components:
Component 1 (60% of the A level): A personal investigation coursework. This is a personal journey exploring the student’s own ideas both in and beyond their sketchbook. Students in the past have worked in traditional media, such as painting, drawing and sculpture, although many have also explored video, textiles and installations as part of their coursework submission. Students also submit a piece of continuous prose of a minimum of 1000 words, on a theme connected with their own work. The coursework component runs throughout Year 12 and right up until February of Year 13.
Component 2 (40% of the A level): An externally set assignment. This is a much shorter unit, starting in February of Year 13. This culminates in a 15-hour controlled assessment in the art room in May, in which students create a final response to the set theme. The piece of work which is produced during this fifteen hours, along with all their preparatory work, is then submitted.
Students put on an exhibition of their work at the end of the two years.
Grade 6 in GCSE Art or Textiles guarantees a place on this course.
Please note that applicants must also meet our overall entry requirements of scoring at least a total of 42 points (simply add up all your GCSE grades) and achieve a Grade 4 or higher in both English Language and Mathematics.
You could take this course to complement other advanced level courses such as History of Art or to prepare for the A2 part of an Advanced GCE in Art and Design, which could lead onto higher education in areas of art and design, photography, architecture or more general higher education courses. With further training, you could go into a job related to art and design such as an Architect, Interior Designer, Artist or fashion designer. You could also go straight into a job as the A GCE is a recognised qualification that will encourage you to explore your creative mind and help you develop the basic skills, understanding and knowledge that many employers across lots of industries are looking for.