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Art (A Level)

Why study Art at Tapton?

Excellent Examination Results
Our exam results are amazing and are sustained over time. We work hard to ensure that you get the best results you are capable of, and ensure you have a rigorous learning experience. 

Destinations and Career Prospects
Students regularly progress onto Fine Art, Architecture, Fashion and Design at the best universities and colleges in the country, including Russell Group universities and top design universities.

Art & Design offers many areas of employment, from Architecture to Fashion, Product Design or Interior Design, Textile Design, Theatre and Stage Design, Makeup, Advertising, Film - the list is growing!

Enrichment Opportunities
The Art department is open to students every evening after school, free classrooms are also available for Sixth Form students during the day.

We encourage all students to visit galleries, and offer trips to Derbyshire, London or Liverpool to visit Tate Britain and Tate Modern or Tate Liverpool; and a residential trip to Paris in Y12 where we visit 5 major galleries including the Louvre, the Pompidou Centre, the Musee D’Orsay, L’Orangerie; and also Monet’s legendary garden at Giverny. Students who took part in the Paris trip will develop this work to support Component 1.

You can also support learning in Lower School Art Classes, produce costume/props/sets for school productions and help at Art Club or support with competitions and The Big Draw. 

What are the Entry Requirements? 

5 in Art and Design or a visual portfolio demonstrating art work of a GCSE grade 5 standard.

What else is required?

You are enthusiastic, open-minded and willing to learn new skills and techniques. You are inquisitive and enjoy looking at Art work from all periods and styles. You enjoy working as part of a group, but can work independently. You are determined and will work to ensure you succeed. You understand the need for resilience and want to learn.

Exam Board


What will I study?
  • Fine Art: Drawing and painting using a range of techniques and styles. You will use a range of mediums, including oil, chalk pastel, charcoal, pencil, acrylics, mono-printing, etching, water colours. 
  • Textiles: Batik, screen-printing, felt-making, silk painting, weaving, free machine embroidery. 
  • Sculpture: Clay, card, wire construction, plaster. 
  • ICT: use of Adobe Photoshop, digital camera, projections, video installations.
  • Design: Aspects of design e.g. architecture, graphics, text, posters, packaging, related ICT. 
  • Research: As part of the programme of study, students must research and learn from investigations into the work of other artists, crafts persons and designers.
How will I be assessed?
  • Throughout the course students will take part in peer-group and self assessment in order to familiarise themselves with the Assessment Objectives, and become more objective in their skills of critique. 
  • Staff review work with students on a one-to-one basis regularly, giving support, feedback, and set targets for improvement and progression. 
  • Both units are internally assessed at the end of the course, and marks are moderated by a visiting assessor from AQA.


COMPONENT 1: Personal Investigation: 60% of marks This is a practical investigation supported by written material. Students are required to produce in depth investigations into an idea, issue, theme or concept of their choosing. This will be supported by a written response of 3000 words max of continuous prose.

COMPONENT 2: Externally set Examination: 40% of marks: Set by the board, a series of starting points distributed 1st February. A lead-in or preparation time, followed by a supervised exam of 15 hours where students work unaided to produce a finished outcome. Preparation work must stop at the beginning of the first session and be stored securely with the exam officer between exam sessions.

Students at Tapton invariably follow a very individual course of study, using the initial workshops to extend, develop skills and techniques, and support the development of idea. Contextual studies are at the core of our teaching in a very practical way.