Course Overview

They will experience a range of processes, media, materials and techniques. They will study a variety of areas including drawing, painting, sculpture, print-making and textiles. They will be expected to employ a range of skills, knowledge processes and techniques. They will explore and make connections with the work of artists at regular stages of their projects.

Full Specification is available here (PDF).


Students are briefed on the requirements of each project and the deadlines for completion. Time is also set aside to explain how the work fits with the mark scheme. This preparation will be done prior to each summative assessment to enable all students to prepare effectively.

All projects will address the four AQA assessment objects.

Students will:

  • AO1 Develop their ideas through investigations informed by contextual and other sources demonstrating analytical and cultural understanding.
  • AO2 Refine their ideas through experimenting and selecting appropriate resources, media, materials, techniques and processes.
  • AO3 Record ideas, observations and insights relevant to their intentions in visual and/or other forms.
  • AO4 Present a personal, informed and meaningful response demonstrating analytical and critical understanding, realising intentions and where appropriate, making connections between visual, written, oral or other elements.

Lesson time is allocated for students to view individual feedback and use the mark scheme to identify their strengths and weaknesses. A copy is of the feedback is kept by the teacher and used to inform subject reports and parent evening consultations.

Home Learning Policy

Homework is used to support the work produced in class. All KS4 groups should have the equivalent of two hours homework per week. Homework time could be used to complete unfinished work from class and to support, develop and enhance all aspects of the learning that has taken or will take place.

It is standard practice in the department to group these homework’s together over a period of two or three weeks. This is a way of ensuring that quality homework is produced. If homework is grouped over a number of weeks, staff will ensure that the appropriate numbers of homework reminders are given out in subsequent lessons.

As with all assessment in the department, homework will be assessed against the AQA objectives. Linking the homework to one of the objectives provides students with an opportunity to actively engage in critical and reflective thinking. This linkage will also provide the classroom teacher with additional assessment data.

A typical homework task set over a two week period: To produce development work showing an understanding of Kurt Jackson’s painting style.

Task: Explore a range of painting styles and techniques to help you work out the way you will paint onto your Kurt Jackson inspired canvas. For example; if your photograph has bushes or shrubs in the foreground – how could you paint them? You could produce a page of painted shrubs/bushes in your sketchbook, using different thicknesses of paint, brushwork, techniques, painting materials (cardboard/tissue/brush etc). You could then explain which were successful and which methods you will use on your main painting.

Year Plan

Year 10 Plan
Assessment date Topics to be assessed
September, October, November Kurt Jackson Project
December Kurt Jackson Canvas
February Architecture Project Begins
May, June Ian Murphy inspired Architectural drawings (mixed media)
July Completion and refinement of both landscape and architecture project
Year 11 Plan
Assessment date Topics to be assessed
November Mock Exam Controlled Piece
December Final Project
January – May External Set Task (Examination Period)


Unit 1:Controlled Assessment

  • 60% of total marks
  • Pupils will select (under advice from their teacher) and arrange a portfolio from work undertaken during the course. This must contain more than one completed project.

Pupils should produce practical outcomes informed by critical / contextual work in one or more area(s) including drawing and painting, mixed media, sculpture, installation, printmaking and photography.

Unit 2: Externally-Set Task

  • 40% of total mark
  • Question papers will be issued in January.
  • There will be a preparatory period followed by a 10 hour focused study in which pupils will respond to their chosen starting point