Course overview

Art and Design A Level City of Bristol College

Art A Level is an ideal stepping stone towards a career in the creative sector. You will learn to express yourself and develop your flair for art and design in a highly creative environment.

This course is an option within our Creative A Level.

  • Creative Pathway course code: ALCREATIVE

Find out more about our A Level pathways and how to apply

Additional information

Who is this course for?

The course enables you to work independently and to learn how to be experimental and develop a range of skills and techniques, but also to be able to problem solve and think outside of the box.

You are encouraged at all times to be creative with your thought process and ideas that you can respond to and develop.

This course is for 16-18 year olds with a genuine interest in Art, who may have studied Art previously, although this is not essential.

What you'll learn

You will learn a variety of Art disciplines as you develop a portfolio for your first assignment, and undertake preparatory research to create a body of preparatory work which will inform your final exam piece. You’ll learn how to work independently, sustain a project from the initial starting point to realisation, research and develop your ideas and link your work together in a thoughtful and meaningful way.

As part of the course, you’ll have the chance to go on at least two trips to London each year. There is also a foreign study trip with recent trips including Amsterdam and Vienna. At the end of the second year, you will take part in organising and exhibiting your own work in a gallery style environment for your friends and family.

Course entry requirements

A minimum of 5 GCSEs at Grade 4 or above, including both Maths and English.

Grade 4 in Art or another creative subject, plus a portfolio. 

You will provide a copy of your last school report and/or a reference from an employer or relevant professional other this will include attendance. This is to ensure that we can support you to be able to achieve well on the course.

Applicants with 85% or below attendance will have been deemed not to have met this criteria.

All applicants are given an opportunity to discuss any evidence-based mitigating circumstances that may have affected the reference/school report.

How is the course delivered and assessed?

The Art and Design A Level is assessed through a coursework component worth 60% of your mark, and an exam worth 40%.

The course begins with a theme, and you will build a body of work in your sketchbook based around a theme for the first eight weeks of the course. Then you will move your project into a more self-guided area of study as well as continuing to build a larger body of work and research.

For the second part of the course, the exam board releases an exam paper in February which consists of five or six different project themes. You will choose one of them and build another body of work in a sketchbook with research and development work resulting in a final outcome, which you will make under exam conditions in May.

Future career and study opportunities

After studying Art A Level, you could progress onto a foundation or bachelor’s degree in Art, a creative apprenticeship or a career in the creative sector.

Additional costs

This course is free to anyone aged 16-18. There is no formal list of additional costs. However, if you are on a limited income, you may be eligible to receive help with these costs from our Learner Support Funding Bursary.

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