Exam Board: AQA
The A level Graphic Communication course comprises of two parts; a Personal investigation (which includes 2 projects and is worth 60% of their final mark) and an Externally Set assignment (Which is worth 40% of the final marks). In year 12 students will complete project 1 and start project 2, they will complete this project at the start of year 13. There will be continual assessment throughout course using the exam boards’ assessment objectives. Students will also be expected to investigate galleries independently in their free time to further their projects and gain better understanding of artists work.
In year 12 students will undertake The Personal Investigation, this takes the form of two major projects. Students are allowed to decide on these projects. This allows for personal choices with the emphasis on independent learning. Students must design their own briefs focusing on a project that allows them to explore a range of graphical outcomes that is thoughtfully discussed with the teaching staff. After designing a brief, students must develop and explore their themes creating a range of outcomes in a professional manner. During this time students will use the skills and knowledge they have acquired from year 7 and further refine and develop these skills to confidently realise their intentions.
Students further refine how they develop ideas; this includes an ability to research a range of artists work, analysing their processes and using the knowledge gained to influence and inspire their own work. Students develop their ability to experiment with a range of ideas and materials that are appropriate to their starting points, reviewing and refining their work purposefully. Students further refine their ability to record their ideas and reflect critically on their work and progress. Finally, they must have the ability to create a personal and imaginative final realisation that makes connections between their work and others. Student’s practical outcomes can take the form of a range of final realisations that can include 2-D paintings, printmaking, photography, textiles, multimedia pieces and digital work packaging, posters, magazine covers. Students will be expected to produce high quantity quality work during the course
The practical aspect of the course is complimented written analysis of artists and their work focusing on the wider issues they explore. The students also show a high level of critical analysis when discussing their own work explaining their themes in a mature and creative manner.
In the 2nd project alongside their practical responses’ students will also tackle a 3000-word essay that explores the students chosen practical themes from an analytical viewpoint. Students will be expected to devise a title for the essay based on their second project. From this point, they must complete in-depth research on their topic and then write an essay that shows their understanding of the artists and the themes from their research.
At the start of year 13 students will complete their Personal investigation by completing their second project, and then spending a Month in January reviewing and refining both projects to the highest standard ready to hand in their completed projects on at the end of January. In February they will be handed their Externally Set Assignment which is worth 40% of their final grade and is set by the exam board
Externally Set Assignment
The Externally Set Assignment is a response to topics given by the Examining Board. The papers are issued in early February and students have until mid- May to finalise their responses. During this preparatory period students are to complete a range of investigations and developments including experimentations with ideas and materials, exploration into artist and contextual studies, good quality recording from observation and critical analyse of their own work. This should allow students to produce a high quantity of preparatory work while at the same time developing the quality of their work. These studies should help the students devise a range of final pieces for the exam.
Students must then complete a 15 hours examination final piece under examination conditions. At the end of the exam all work must be submitted for final assessment.