Sixth Form Academic

The Sixth Form curriculum offers flexible options and different pathways of study allow specialisation for those who know exactly where they want to go but preserve diversity of choice and the opportunity for breadth for all students.


  • A Level Results 2023

    Tranby are proud to celebrate the achievements of our Upper Sixth. With a return to the historic standards of A Level examinations and having received GCSEs under the shadow of COVID, this cohort have dealt with unprecedented challenges across recent years. Nonetheless, we always have the highest of expectations for our students, and this year our leavers have performed incredibly well. With the most common grade achieved in our results being an A/A*, these students have set themselves up well for all that follows.

    As recent news had implied, schools had reason to worry about how the day might go, but at Tranby we are proud indeed that these results continue to build on our past performances, improving our top A*/A rate, pushing it even further above the national average, and securing for our Upper Sixth an enormous and diverse range of ambitious university places. With all aspirant medics securing their places for the course, 10% of the year group are on their way to becoming a doctor. Although every student in the year group has earned results to be proud of, with impressive and challenging futures now ahead of them, we wanted to draw attention to some particular successes from amongst the cohort:

    Mia achieved A*AA in Law, History and Mathematics, having already achieved an A in AS French last year. With a burgeoning interest in how society operates and in the intersection of morality and jurisprudence, she will be studying Law at Durham. This year, she has been active in the school’s extra-curricular Law activities, joining two competitions at Hull University, with her team winning one of them. Mia said: “Tranby’s teachers have been so supportive in my subjects and with my university application. Today I was able to learn for sure that all the work has paid off, and I will be studying at my chosen university. I cannot wait for September.”

    Jack has always been a leading light of the science classrooms and his passion for engineering has been clear throughout his time in senior school, including his senior role in the school’s rocketry club. With A*A*A in Physics, Chemistry and Mathematics, he will be taking up a place in Ship Science at the University of Southampton, a global leader in this particular field of marine engineering. Jack said: “I am ecstatic and relieved; I couldn’t see it going much better that it has today. My degree will bring together my interests in engineering and sailing, and I’ve been grateful for the excellent support I’ve received in applying for such a distinctive course.”

    Sheema has earned A*AA in Mathematics, Chemistry and Biology at A Level, and will study Medicine at King’s College, London. Having been awarded a suite of grade 9s at GCSE, Sheema has built on this success at A level, while also serving the school expertly as a Head Prefect. Always recognised by teachers for her capacity to extend her understanding far beyond the specifications, we know she will excel in the medical career that now lies ahead. Sheema said: “I am so relieved and happy with these results. I’ve relied on the application support here at Tranby and will miss the school greatly.”

    Connie received AAA in Film, Drama and Psychology and, having always been interested in the filmic arts, will be studying Filmmaking and Creative Technologies at the Liverpool Institute for the Performing Arts. Connie said: “I’m, feeling incredibly proud of myself and excited that I can now begin the next stage of my education studying something that I enjoy and interests me so much. I am so grateful to the school for helping me secure such a specialist course in my chosen field.”

    Will has always been a passionate student of the social sciences with a deep interest in global financial and economic affairs. He has leveraged this interest into securing AAB across Mathematics, Geography and Economics at A Level, and will be studying Economics at Newcastle University. Will said: “I am very happy with my results, and grateful for the support of my teachers throughout my A level studies and in my university application.”

    Evelyn has long mixed her attentive and dedicated work in the classroom with a tenacity and skillfulness on the hockey pitch. She has secured a full suite of Distinction*s for her BTEC in Sport, alongside an A in A Level Sociology and an A* in her EPQ, and will be studying Sociology at Durham University from September. Soon to be engaged with training for the Durham hockey team (against whom she scored a goal in a recent match while playing for her longstanding team, Wakefield), Evelyn cannot wait to make her mark. Evelyn said: “I am overjoyed to be joining my chosen university, and will be up there this week for pre-season training for the hockey team!”

    Maisie has earned AAB in Biology, Law and Chemistry at A Level, on top of the A she secured for her Extended Project on organ donation in Year 12 and will be studying Medicine at Newcastle University. Constantly recognised throughout her time in senior school for her academic abilities and her maturity and empathy, Maisie served as a Deputy Head Prefect through the last year and has been in all things a role model to her peers. Maisie said: “I am overwhelmed, excited and in disbelief … without Tranby’s teachers I would not be here. Their help behind the scenes is why I’ve achieved this today.”

    Head Mistress Alex Wilson said: “Today has been a wonderful moment for Tranby, seeing our Upper Sixth turn their dreams into reality. The resilience and fortitude of this year group has been an inspiration throughout the last few years. We wish all of our Upper Sixth the very best with their future, and look forward to seeing them again as they return to visit Tranby in the years ahead.”

  • Biology

    Examination Body: AQA 7402 

    A Level Biology is challenging, exciting, interesting and relevant; it is a popular subject in the Sixth Form. Biology is the study of life. It encompasses the study of organisms, from the smallest viruses through to human beings. A Level Biology provides an understanding of a variety of biological processes, from the large scale magnificent ecological relationships in a habitat to the function and structure of biological molecules, such as DNA.  

    The A Level Biology course aims to build on your understanding of the subject achieved at GCSE and to equip you with the skills and understanding required not only to succeed at A Level, but also to follow a scientific or medical degree at university. 

    Entry Requirements 

    There are no specific requirements to start A-level study in Biology. Your teachers will be more interested in your potential, commitment and genuine interest in Biology. You must accept that consistent hard work is essential for success. 

    Delivery and Assessment 

    The course offered is linear, so there are no modules and all examinations are taken at the end of the course. It is anticipated that most pupils will follow the full two-year course leading to the award of GCE Advanced Level Biology. 

  • BTEC Sport

    Examination body: Pearsons

    The BTEC course will suit students who enjoy and are keen on sport, not just those who excel in it. Students opting for this subject will participate in a mix of practical
    and theory lessons so a fundamental interest is a necessity. The BTEC in Sport allows students to learn by:

    • course leader and tutor input
    • experiencing and developing an interest in a variety of roles
    • increasing their understanding of the modern day developments in Sport

    Why Study BTEC Sport?

    Major universities are now offering widely recognised degrees in a range of sports related courses from the classic PE degree, to degrees in Sports Physiotherapy, Sports Psychology,
    Sports Science, Sports Marketing and Leisure & Tourism. BTEC qualifications are now nationally recognised and are used to support university applications.

    BTEC offers the perfect preparation for university with a mixture of research based assignments and units which are assessed via an external exam.

    A Distinction* in BTEC is the equivalent of an A* at A Level.

    Entry Requirements

    It is open to all pupils who are capable of achieving a nationally recognised qualification, it is not a requirement to have taken GCSE PE.

    Delivery and assessment

    The BTEC Level 3 is internally and externally assessed, with the units and specification being criterion referenced based on a series of learning outcomes.
    Learners can be awarded a Pass, Merit, Distinction or Distinction*.

  • Business

    Examination Body: AQA 

    Business at A Level covers a wide range of related topics including finance, marketing, operations, human resources, strategy and the external environment. It is a subject that will support progression to further study as it can be combined with any number of subjects at degree level. 

    Business is based on what happens in the real world around us and is, therefore, a very accessible subject. During the course students will develop important examination skills such as analysis and evaluation, which will aid them at degree level and in the world of work. 

    Entry Requirements 

    There are no requirements over and above those laid down for Sixth Form entry. However, an interest in current business affairs is advantageous as theory is related to current business examples in class discussions. A willingness and ability to write extended answers is also required as issues are analysed in depth and in detail in exam questions. 

    Delivery and Assessment 

    The AS and A Level qualifications are stand alone; students will only sit the AS if they are not going to study Business in Year 13. Questions in the exams are multiple choice, case study based and essays. 

  • Chemistry

    Examination Body: AQA Advanced Chemistry 7405 

    A Level Chemistry is a highly regarded subject and lends itself to many degree courses and pathways. A chemistry qualification opens doors to a wide range of careers. The food you eat, the clothes you wear and the technology you use all depend on chemistry.   

    The Royal Society of Chemistry writes: “In a complex and changing world, chemistry and the chemical sciences are essential. They are vital in our everyday lives and will be vital in helping the world respond to some of its biggest challenges.” 

    Entry Requirements 

    A minimum 6 in GCSE Chemistry or Double Award Science is required. If you only achieve the minimum standards you must accept that consistent hard work is essential for success. 

    Delivery and Assessment 

    The course is linear and consists of 9 topic areas. All students are entered in June of Year 13. 

    The work involves lectures and regular assessments. In addition, practical skills are assessed on numerous occasions, including 12 required activities which contribute to a Practical Endorsement. It is important that time should be spent outside the laboratory on productive reading and comprehensive study of the subject matter covered. The subject content is divided into three topic areas: Physical, Inorganic and Organic Chemistry, with the content of each examined by three written papers.  

  • Computer Science

    Examination Board: OCR 

    Computer Science is not just learning about computers, it is learning how to solve problems using computer systems. This course is for you if you enjoy the challenge of problem solving and developing working solutions. You should be comfortable with Mathematics, as there is a large element of Maths involved in the course.  

    Computer Science links to other areas of study including Mathematics and Languages and provides an excellent platform for studying Computer Science or Games Development at university. 

    Entry Requirements 

    You will need to have achieved level 5 or above in at least five GCSE Subjects and it is preferable if you achieved a Maths grade of level 6 or above. It is beneficial, but not compulsory, to have studied Computer Science at GCSE. 

    Delivery and Assessment 

    The course consists of three units which are outlined below: 

    Component 01: Computer Systems – Written exam 40%  

    In this unit you will learn about computer components and their uses, types of software and the different methodologies used to develop software, how data is exchanged between different systems, how data is represented and stored within different structures, different algorithms that can be applied to data structures and the laws and ethical issues around the use of computers. 

    Component 02: Algorithms & Programming – Written Exam 40% 

    In this unit you will learn what is meant by computational thinking, how computers can be used to solve problems, how programs can be written to solve problems, the use of standard algorithms and their use in describing problems.  

    Component 03: Programming Project – Coursework Project 20% 

    In this unit you will learn how to produce a coded, computing solution to a real-world problem, including analysis of the problem, design of the solution, development of the solution and evaluation of the finished project. 

  • Design Technology: Product Design

    Examination Body: Edexcel 

    Product Design is all around us. Everything we come into contact with, from our smart phones and our plastic milk bottles to a Ferrari F1 car and a child’s scooter, has been considered and designed by someone. There is a huge industry made up of many different roles that go into creating all our products that we take for granted. Concept artists, materials analysts, designers, modelling specialists… the list goes on. This is what makes Product Design such a varied and interesting course and career. The subject also leads into other roles such as Architect, Automotive engineer. Graphic designer. Materials engineer. Product manager. Production designer, theatre/television/film. Purchasing manager. 

    During the course you will work with a variety of materials and solve practical problems which will challenge your creativity and innovation. You will develop a detailed understanding of design and engineering both from a practical and theoretical prospective. You will be able to analyse any product for how it could be manufactured and what materials would be most suitable for its use. 

    Entry Requirements 

    Along with the normal Sixth Form entry requirements, you will need a 4 or above in both GCSE Maths and English.  

    Delivery and Assessment 

    In Year 12 you will undertake a number of practical projects to build your skill level and understanding of the subject. The theory aspect will be spit over the two years and is supported with its own textbook. Year 13 you will take a written examination and produce coursework. Your final practical piece will be a single, integrated design project using any material or combination of materials, which will contain certain aspects of industrial and commercial design. 

  • Drama and Theatre

    Examination body: Edexcel  

    The A Level Drama and Theatre qualification encourages creativity and critical thinking. The focus on practical work will allow you to develop your skills, which will support progression to further study of drama and a wide range of other subjects that require communication and presentation. 

    The two set texts will require you to articulate how you would perform in certain roles, and design for certain scenes, putting practical work at the heart of each specification. This course will encourage and give you opportunities to think ‘outside the box’. 

    Entry Requirements 

    There are no requirements over and above those laid down for Sixth Form entry. A Level Drama & Theatre is open to all students who are capable of achieving an A Level standard. 

    Delivery and Assessment 

    The A Level in Drama and Theatre is assessed through a combination of a 40% written exam and 60% Non-Examined Assessment (NEA).   The 60% practical aspect of the course includes a devised and a scripted performance and work on either a monologue or duologue. 

  • Economics

    Examination body: AQA 

    The basic economic problem is scarcity and Economics can be defined as the study of the allocation of scarce resources between competing uses; it is about the choices we have to make to get the goods and services we need and want. In Economics, we study how markets work, why they sometimes fail and how the government may step in to solve this failure. We also examine the structure of firms in markets and how this structure may help or hinder the allocation of resources. In addition, we look at how the national economy works and how we try to ensure it grows over time to improve economic welfare. 

    Entry Requirements 

    There are no requirements over and above those laid down for Sixth Form entry. However, you should acknowledge that Economics is a rigorous academic subject which requires the ability to think logically; a 6 in GCSE Maths can indicate the ability to do this. A willingness and ability to write extended answers is also required as issues are analysed in depth and in detail in exam questions. 

    Economics appeals to those who have an interest in the world around them, and those who can think logically within clearly defined parameters usually meet with success. 

    Delivery and Assessment 

    The AS examinations comprise two papers, which include multiple choice and data response questions. The A Level examinations comprise three papers, which include multiple choice, data response questions, essays and questions based on an economics case study. 

    Students will only sit the AS exams if they do not wish to continue studying Economics in Year 13. 

  • English Literature

    Examination Body: Edexcel 

    As a facilitating subject, English Literature is a prestigious subject that provides a gateway to a range of subjects at degree level. It will encourage you to develop a passion for English Literature and the literary heritage. Through reading widely, critically and independently, you will become an expert in literature across centuries, genre and theme. You will be challenged to develop personal responses to some of the most stimulating poetry, prose and drama in the world. 

    Entry Requirements 

    You should achieve at least a 6 in GCSE English Literature. 

    Assessment and Delivery 

    The Edexcel specification offers the opportunity to experience literature at its best, with a focus on analysis and development of personal responses. You will be able to take all examined texts into the examination.  

    Over the course of two years, you will explore modern drama and a Shakespeare play, a modern poetry anthology and a set poet as well as classic prose. A coursework unit allows you to explore texts that are of particular interest to you. 

  • Extended Project Qualification

    In the Sixth Form all pupils will be entered for the Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) in the Lower Sixth. This is a qualification recognised by a number of universities and will provide you with additional UMS marks. Undertaking the EPQ encourages wider learning, prepares you for writing dissertations whilst at university, and often creates a discussion point at university interviews. 

    The project provides students with an opportunity to carry out a study in depth, based on either personal interests or passions, the environment around them, organisations and activities they may be a part of, or even an aspect of a subject that they are studying. It takes the form of either a dissertation, or a number of other forms, which could include an investigation or field study, or an artefact, backed up with paperwork. 

    All projects must include a written report of between 1,000 and 5,000 words. The exact length of each written report will depend on the nature of the project, the subject area or topic chosen and the other form of evidence.   

    Evidence can include:  

    • an artefact, model or construction 
    • a media file of performances or activities 
    • an audio or multimedia presentation 
    • a PowerPoint presentation 
    • a photographic record of the project.  

    One lesson a week in Sixth Form will be spent researching for your EPQ under teacher supervision but you are also encouraged to do additional work outside this time. 

  • Film Studies

    Film is one of the main cultural innovations of the 20th century and a major art form of the last hundred years. Those who study it characteristically bring
    with them a high degree of enthusiasm and excitement for what is a powerful and culturally significant medium, inspiring a range of responses from the
    emotional to the reflective. Film Studies consequently makes an important contribution to the curriculum, offering the opportunity to investigate how
    film works both as a medium of representation and as an aesthetic medium.

    You will be introduced to a wide variety of films in order to broaden your knowledge and understanding of film and the range of responses films can generate. You will study mainstream American films from the past and the present as well as a range of recent and contemporary British films, American independent films and global films.

    Production work will allow you to demonstrate your own creativity by applying your knowledge of how films are constructed to your own film making and screen writing.The short film produced, functions as the A Level coursework unit.

    Entry Requirements

    You will need to have attained a grade 6 or higher in English Language.

    Delivery and Assessment

    This is a two-year linear course which is assessed through two equally weighted examinations in Year 13, as well as a 30% coursework unit based on the production of your own film.

  • Fine Art

    Examination body: AQA 

    The Fine Art A Level involves a combination of practical manipulation of art media and materials with the expression of ideas and concepts. It demands a high level of thinking, commitment and independent effort. You will spend time learning and improving your drawing, painting, printmaking and mixed media skills and applying them to set projects. Fine Art involves developing a practical and personal response to a subject and linking it to the work of other artists. Throughout the course you will be required to write annotations and evaluations to support the development of your practical artwork. 

    Entry Requirements 

    • Standard Sixth Form entry requirement  

    • Grade 5 in GCSE Art

    • Pupils without GCSE Art will be required to show a small portfolio of selected work which they have undertaken independently, or complete a summer project for submission post GCSE results. 

    Delivery and Assessment 

    This course is assessed by coursework and examined units which are both assessed and marked in school and externally moderated by a visiting examiner to the school.  

  • Food Science and Nutrition

    Examination body: WJEC/EDUQUAS 

    This qualification allows students to gain a wealth of knowledge about the Food and Nutrition industry. Students will have the opportunity to learn about the relationship between the human body and food as well as advanced practical skills for cooking and preparing food. There is a strong emphasis on practical work, making this an ideal choice for students who prefer to learn by doing. Students not wishing to continue studying the subject in Year 13 will be awarded a certificate on successful completion of Unit 1: Meeting the nutritional needs of specific groups. 

    Course title: Level 3 Certificate/Diploma in Food Science and Nutrition 

    Entry Requirements 

    A GCSE in Food Preparation and Nutrition would be advisable for entry onto this course, but this is not essential. A love of cooking, some scientific knowledge and enthusiasm would equally be acceptable. 

     Delivery and Assessment 

    Students will generally undergo one practical lesson each week which will entail preparing, cooking and presenting two to three dishes and accompaniments. The remaining lessons will cover the theory part of the course. 

    Both certificate and Diploma are assessed through a combination of written exams and externally set assignments. 

    Further information including UCAS weighting and progression is available from www.wjec.co.uk 

  • Geography

    Examination Body: Edexcel 

    A Level Geography is a well suited A Level choice for anyone who is interested in the present and future state of our planet and its inhabitants. You will build on the knowledge, understanding and expertise gained at GCSE and will investigate the challenges of the natural world and today’s modern society.  

    The course includes a balance between physical, human and environmental topics, with fieldwork and research skills being a key feature of the course, allowing you to complete an individual geographical investigation as part of your A level course in Year 13. You will develop your decision-making and analytical skills, both as an individual and working as part of a team.  

    In addition to classroom lessons you will plan and undertake fieldwork locally and take part in a residential field visit to Blencathra field study centre near Keswick in Cumbria.  

    Entry Requirements 

    You will need to have obtained a 6 or higher in Geography GCSE and have a good understanding of Maths. If you did not take Geography at GCSE it is still perfectly possible to be successful in Geography A Level, if you have achieved good GCSE results in other subjects, and have the interest and enthusiasm to improve your world knowledge.  

    Delivery and Assessment 

    In common with all A Levels this is a two-year linear course comprising units covering a broad range of topics in geography. Assessment is via three examinations in Year 13: 1 Physical Geography paper (30%), 1 Human Geography paper (30%) and a synoptic paper (20%) , as well as a 3000-word individual Geographical Investigation on your chosen topic or issue, worth 20 per cent of your final grade. 

  • History

    Examination body: Edexcel 

    If you like arguing, developing your own views and, above all, if you are intrigued about the past, then History is for you. You should also feel comfortable with analytical writing and independent research. 

    History provides links to many other areas of study including humanities, arts and sciences, so it combines well with other subjects. 

    Entry Requirements 

    You will need a 6 or above at GCSE History.  

    Delivery and assessment 

    At AS this consists of two papers, both of which are Modern History options and are externally examined at the end of Year 12. Students will study Germany and West Germany from 1918-89. This encompasses the creation and fall of the Weimar Republic, the establishment of the Nazi dictatorship and a return to democracy under the Federal Republic of Germany. Thematically, students will assess political change, opposition to the regimes, education and cultural diversity and attitudes towards women and ethnic minorities. 

    At A Level, in addition to the above, students will complete one piece of internally assessed coursework which is teacher-led, and a final paper on Rebellions and Disorder under the Tudors. This option enables students to explore the ways in which, despite a shaky start, the Tudors were able to establish their dynasty as one of the most powerful England has ever seen. students will learn about: the Pretender rebellions under Henry VII; the religiously motivated rebellions which Henry VIII so viciously put down; Kett’s agrarian rebellion against the boy king Edward VI; the rivalry of queen against queen under Elizabeth I. Students wishing to undertake a full History A Level must sit all three externally assessed papers at the end of Year 13 and complete the coursework component

  • Law

    Examination body: AQA

    With expert teaching and constant and successful engagement with law competitions at major local universities, Tranby's Law students are noted and celebrated scholars in our community. 

    Studying Law gives students an understanding of the role of Law in today's society and raises their awearness of the rights and responsibilities of individuals. By learning about legal rules and how and why they apply to real life, students also develop their anaytical ability, decision making, critical thinking and problem-solving skills. All these skills are highly sought after by higher education and employers. Topics with the A Level are: The nature of law and the English legal system, Criminal Law, Tort Law , and Contract Law.

    Teaching and assessment

    The course is assessed through three two hour exams. All papers include details on the nature of law and the English legal system. Paper 1 includes Criminal Law; Paper 2 includes Tort Law; Paper 3 includes Contract Law. All papers contain a conbination of multiple choice questions, short written answers, and extended essays.

  • Mathematics

    Examination body: Edexcel 

    A Level Mathematics could sensibly be studied in combination with any other subject. Therefore, whatever your main interest, if you are good at Maths, and enjoy it, you should take it at A Level. Past A Level Maths students have become lawyers, engineers and doctors. 

    If you are thinking of going into a broadly scientific area, Mathematics can only be a help and may be vital. If you are wondering how good you have to be, then there are no fixed rules. Broadly speaking, at A Level, your grade will not be better than your GCSE grade but what matters most is your attitude and willingness to work. 

    Obtaining a Maths A Level shows that you have the transferable skills of analysis, logic, and problem-solving, which will always come in handy. Some degree subjects such as Physics and Engineering ask for a Maths A Level as part of the entry requirements. Others, such as Medicine and Architecture, do not make it a necessity, but they still have a fair amount of mathematical content. 

    Entry Requirements 

    You will need a grade 7 at GCSE. We do occasionally accept students who obtain a grade 6 but you must be prepared to work very hard, and this normally only happens in exceptional circumstances. 

    Delivery and assessment 

    A Level Mathematics is made up of two sections: 

    Pure Maths - This is two-thirds of the course and extends the Algebra, Co-ordinate Geometry, Trigonometry and Sequences work from GCSE and introduces Calculus. 

    Applied Maths - This is one-third of the course and is made up of both Statistics and Mechanics. The Statistics is an extension of topics such as Histograms and Probability at GCSE, whereas the Mechanics involves new topics such as forces and momentum. 

  • Mathematics (Further)

    Examination body: Edexcel 

    Further Mathematics is just as you would expect. If you are applying to mathematically-related courses at one of the top universities (Engineering for example) you are certain to require Further Maths. Such advice is, perhaps, a bit superfluous because if you are considering such courses you MUST enjoy Mathematics. If you do enjoy Maths why not study it in more depth? At the very least it will give you an insight into the difficulties, challenges and beauty of advanced Mathematics. 

    If you are successful at Further Maths you will not be short of offers from either universities or employers. 

    Entry Requirements 

    The A Level course is only for students who love Mathematics, enjoy a challenge, are self-motivated, hardworking and have at least grade 8 at GCSE Maths and an A in GCSE Further Maths. This is why Further Mathematicians are highly sought after by universities and employers. 

    Recently, the examination boards made it possible to study for an AS Level in Further 

    Mathematics alongside the Mathematics AS Level by picking out topics which ‘stand-alone’. 

    Delivery and assessment 

    Further Pure Maths  is compulsory and involves new topics such as Matrices, Complex Numbers, Proof by Induction and introduces the Taylor and Maclaurin Series, Polar Equations and Differential Equations. 

    We cover the Decision Maths as the optional module, which involves Algorithms, Linear Programming and Critical Path Analysis. 

  • Modern Foreign Languages

    Examination body: AQA 

    A Modern Foreign Language qualification in French, German or Spanish carries a degree of prestige on university applications and is highly regarded by employers today. The communication and analytical skills developed through the course are much in demand in today’s increasingly global labour market. 

    There are many ways to combine study of a foreign language with another discipline in 

    Higher Education. It is not unusual these days to study a modern language at degree level together with Law, Economics, Marketing or the Sciences. In the job market you could use a foreign language as a primary skill in translating, interpreting or teaching work. 

    Entry Requirements 

    You should have at least a 6 at GCSE in order to cope with the demands of the A level course. You should also be interested in, and enjoy discussing, a range of current topics and issues which relate to life in, and the culture of, the appropriate target language country. 

    Delivery and assessment 

    You will listen to audio recordings of a range of native German/French/Spanish speakers in order to broaden your listening skills. You will also widen your vocabulary and understanding of written German/French/Spanish through reading a variety of texts, newspaper and magazine articles. Grammar tasks will help you to master the rules of the language and you should expect to speak German/French/Spanish regularly throughout the course. Assessment is via three terminal examinations: Paper 1 which is listening, reading and writing (including translation), Paper 2 which is writing (relating to a text and film), and Paper 3 which is speaking (role play card and discussion based on individual research project).  

  • Music

    Examination Body: AQA  

    A Level Music will suit students who are performers and composers as well as those who have a strong academic interest in the history and theory of music. The course blends practical activity with strong academic and historical discipline, as well as giving insight into the deeper theory of how and why human beings make music. 

    The course builds upon the foundation of GCSE although strong performers need not have studied music academically before. Students are expected to develop their performance and composition skills (including a detailed study of harmony), culminating in a portfolio of coursework which is worth up to 55% of the final mark.  

    In addition a variety of compulsory and optional topics, covering a wide range of classical and popular music, are analysed in great detail. Students study musical styles from several different historical periods (e.g. the Baroque solo concerto, the operas of Mozart) and the present day (e.g. Music Theatre) and evaluate how music has influenced, and been influenced by, society.  

    Entry Requirements 

    6 at GCSE Music or at least ABRSM Grade 6 on any instrument or voice. 

    Delivery and assessment 

    There are three main components: 

    • Analysis and Contextual Understanding: The areas of study provide a focus for students to develop listening skills and develop an in-depth knowledge and understanding of musical elements, musical contexts and musical language. 

    • Performing: Students are expected to give a recital including no less than 10 minutes of music in the second year of the course. This performance can be as a soloist on any instrument (or voice) and/or in an ensemble. 

    • Composition: Students will submit two compositions at the end of the two-year course. The first composition is usually a freely chosen project. The second is in response to a set brief and is usually an harmonic exercise in the style of J.S. Bach. The composition portfolio must be longer than four and a half minutes in total. 

  • Photography

    Examination body: AQA 

    Photography is a popular A Level choice, providing you with the opportunity to focus on a range of processes involved in the use of the digital medium. This is an art-based A level, and whilst you do not need to have taken Art at GCSE, you would be expected to have a small portfolio of your own work. You would be invited to come and have informal chat about the course and be prepared to talk about your work and photography, and also photographers who inspire you. Throughout the course you will be expected to have access to your own DSLR camera and to print your own work for your sketchbook. 

    At Hull Collegiate School you will have access to the Adobe CC suite and will be using Photoshop and Illustrator in combination with our Wacom Cintiq tablets. Other resources available to you includes digital cameras & lenses and studio lighting facilities. The department offers an open-door policy for Sixth Form pupils, which means that you can access the photography facilities at any time during the school week. 

    The course is enhanced by various opportunities to enter school competitions, undertake gallery visits both locally and nationally. You will be expected to contribute to regular displays within school and assist at events such as Prize Giving, where photography is required.  

    Entry Requirements 

    • Standard Sixth Form entry requirement  

    • 5 in GCSE Art 

    • Pupils without GCSE Art will be required to show a small portfolio of selected work which they have undertaken independently, or complete a summer project for submission post GCSE results. 

    Delivery and assessment 

    This course is assessed by coursework and examined units which are both assessed and marked in school and externally moderated by a visiting examiner to the school.  

  • Psychology

    Examination body: AQA 

    Psychology is the science of mind and behaviour. Psychologists study both how people act and the reasons behind their actions. It is an incredibly diverse subject with topics ranging from memory and neuroscience to child development and mental disorders. 

    Students who study Psychology find it interesting because it has relevance to the everyday decisions that we make. Through psychology you can explore questions such as: Why do people lie? Why do some obey authority and others disobey? Why do people develop phobias? And how do companies influence us to buy their products? 

    Psychology is primarily a science, but it also develops your writing and mathematical skills. Studying psychology shows universities that you are a well-rounded student able to write essays, plan experiments and handle data competently. An important part of psychology is critical evaluation, a transferable skill which is valued by universities and employers alike. 

    Entry Requirements 

    You need no prior knowledge of the subject but it will best suit students with an enquiring mind who are interested in people and why they do the things they do. 

    Delivery and assessment  

    There are 7 topics in Year 1 and 4 topics in Year 2. If taking the full A Level, there are three examinations at the end of Year 13.  

  • Physics

    Examination body: AQA 

    An A Level in Physics is always highly regarded and lends itself to many degree courses due to the problem-solving nature of the content and examination.   

    A spokesperson for the Institute of Physics says: 

    “Physicists are involved in finding solutions to many of our most pressing challenges – as well as studying atoms or making sense of the extra-terrestrial, physicists diagnose disease, model the climate, design computer games, predict markets and design hi-tech goods. Studying physics opens doors.” 

    At A Level, you will study a wide variety of new topics, including particles & radiation, mechanics, thermal physics and astrophysics. 

    Entry Requirements 

    A minimum 6 in GCSE Physics or Double Award Science is required. If you achieve the minimum standard, you must also accept that consistent hard work is essential for success. 

    Delivery and assessment  

    The course is linear and consists of 9 topic areas. All students are entered in June of Year 13. 

    The work involves different lesson styles, with a heavy emphasis on practical work. Assessments on recently covered course materials are frequent to monitor progress. In addition, practical skills are assessed on numerous occasions. It is important that time should be spent outside the laboratory on gainful reading and thorough study of the subject matter covered. 

    There are 12 required practicals which are undertaken throughout Year 12 and Year 13. This is in addition to the heavy practical weighting to most lessons, including the use of new and advanced apparatus. 

    The content is examined by three written papers.  

  • Religion, Philosophy and Ethics

    Examination body: OCR 

    "Who knows what is good for mortals while they live the few days of their futile life, which they pass like a shadow?" SOLOMON  (ECCLESIASTES 6:12). 

    Is it always wrong to steal? Is mortality universal? Is there a purpose to our lives? Are we all just a random biological accident? This subject addresses some of the ultimate questions of the meaning of life and purpose of our existence, as well as concepts of right and wrong. We will study ideas from some of the all-time great philosophers including Plato, Aristotle, Aquinas, Descartes and Bentham.  

    Religious Studies is a suitable A Level to lead to further study in Philosophy, Divinity, Theology, Biblical Studies and Ethics. It provides a good supporting subject to other arts subjects such as Law, Business Studies, History, Psychology, Geography, English and Politics. 

    Religion Studies can be useful for careers in education, law, social work, politics, youth work, the police, counselling, journalism or the media, as well as the more obvious religious careers, such as clergy. The ethical components of the course also are useful for those pursuing science subjects with a view to a medical or veterinary career. 

    Entry Requirements 

    There are no entry requirements above those required for entrance into the Sixth Form.  

    Delivery and assessment 

    The A level is a synoptic two year course assessed by three examinations at the end of Year 13. Each exam is two hours and worth 33.3% of the total A level.  

    The new specification includes a section on developments in religious thoughts as well as philosophy of religion and ethical systems. This is to give a more even balance between the three elements of Religious Studies. There is no coursework.  

  • Textiles

    Examination body: AQA 

    Textiles is an excellent choice of A level that compliments many of the A level disciplines we offer at HCS. Popular combinations include Design Technology, Art, Photography, Drama, Business Studies and MFL.  Textiles A Level will allow you to focus on a range of specialisms, working flexibly in fine art textiles, fashion garment making, fabric construction/manipulation, embellishment and print work. There is an expectation that you will have access to a camera and be responsible for the printing and purchase of materials for your independent work. 

    The department offers an open-door policy for Sixth Form pupils, which means that you can access the facilities at any time during the school week. 

    The course is enhanced by various opportunities to undertake gallery visits both locally and nationally. You will also be expected to contribute to regular displays.  

    Entry Requirements 

    • Standard Sixth Form entry requirement  

    • 5 in GCSE Art 

    • Pupils without GCSE Art will be required to show a small portfolio of selected work which they have undertaken independently, or complete a summer project for submission post GCSE results. 

    Delivery and assessment  

    This course is assessed by coursework and examined units which are both assessed and marked in school and externally moderated by a visiting examiner to the school.