A Level Course Options

A Level Course Options

A broad and exciting range of subjects is offered at A Level. In addition to deepening your knowledge and understanding of the subjects you studied at GCSE, there are new subjects that you can also take.

When choosing your A Levels, it is best to focus on subjects you enjoy and in which you can do well. Competition for university places can be tough, and you should choose subjects in which you will achieve high grades. However, if you are aiming for a particular route, such as Medicine, you will need to select certain A Levels which universities expect. Ahead of starting the process, Mrs Harlock, the Head of Sixth Form, will meet with students to discuss career aspirations, subject choices and alternative routes.

 

A Level Courses

Biology Edexcel

Biological Science is one of the broadest and most important subjects in the world, today. It encompasses everything from the molecular study of life processes right up to the study of animal and plant communities. With its mixture of scientific method, problem-solving, practical skills and socially relevant content it offers students the opportunity to develop a wide range of transferable skills.

UNITS OF STUDY
The A Level Biology B course has 10 topics taught over the two-year period; four units in Year 12 and six units in Year 13. The practical endorsement aspect of the course is a compulsory requirement which is internally assessed by the teacher and externally monitored by the examination board.

ASSESSMENT
The Pearson Edexcel A Level Biology B course consists of three externally examined papers and the Science Practical Endorsement.

  • Paper 1: Advanced Biochemistry, Microbiology and Genetics (30%)
  • Paper 2: Advanced Physiology, Evolution and Ecology (30%)
  • Paper 3: General Practical Principles in Biology (40%)

Students who demonstrate the required standard across all the requirements of the common practical assessment criteria will receive a ‘pass’ grade. The practical endorsement does not contribute to the overall grade for A Level Biology, but the result will be recorded on the student’s certificate.

CHARGEABLE REQUIREMENTS
None

COURSE REQUIREMENTS
The minimum prerequisite for entry is a Grade 6 in GCSE Biology or Grade 7 and above for Combined Science.

Business Studies AQA

Business is front-page news. The way companies operate is under greater scrutiny than ever before, while TV programmes like ‘The Apprentice’ and ‘Dragons Den’ raise their profile. In today’s volatile world, it is important to understand the significant impact that decisions made by businesses have on individuals and organisations.

UNITS OF STUDY

  • What is a Business?
  • Managers and Leaders
  • Decision making to improve performance
    • Marketing
    • Operations
    • Finance
    • Human Resources
  • Analysing the current strategic position of the business
  • Choosing the strategic direction of the business
  • Managing strategic change

ASSESSMENT
The A Level is assessed by three 2-hour examinations carrying equal weight of 100 marks each.

  • Paper 1 – Multiple choice questions, short answer questions and two essays
  • Paper 2 – Three compulsory data response question
  • Paper 3 – One compulsory case study

CHARGEABLE MATERIALS
None

COURSE REQUIREMENTS
No previous knowledge is needed. Standard Saint Felix Sixth Form GCSE entry requirements.

Chemistry Edexcel

Students are encouraged to develop their interest in, and enthusiasm for, Chemistry including developing an interest in further study and careers in Chemistry. To appreciate how society makes decisions about scientific issues and how the sciences contribute to the success of the economy and society, whilst demonstrating a deeper appreciation of the skills, knowledge and understanding of How Science Works.

UNITS OF STUDY

  • Atomic Structure and the Periodic Table
  • Bonding and Structure
  • Redox
  • Inorganic Chemistry and the Periodic Table
  • Formulae, Equations and Amounts of Substance
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Modern Analytical Techniques
  • Energetics
  • Kinetics
  • Equilibrium
  • Acid-base Equilibria
  • Transition Metals

ASSESSMENT`

  • Paper 1 (30%)
  • Paper 2 (30%)
  • Paper 3 (40%)

The students also complete a number of core practical experiments, which lead to a Science practical endorsement.

CHARGEABLE MATERIAL
None

COURSE REQUIREMENTS
The minimum prerequisite for entry is a Grade 6 in GCSE Chemistry.

Chinese Edexcel

Chinese A Level offers students the opportunity to gain a greater understanding of the Chinese language and culture and prepares them to become confident communicators in a language spoken by over 1 billion people. The ability to speak Chinese is such a valued asset in today’s globalised world and the job market.

UNITS OF STUDY

  • Food, diet and health
  • Transport, travel and tourism
  • Education and employment
  • Leisure, youth interests and Chinese festivals
  • Environment (energy, pollution and environmental campaigns)

ASSESSMENT

  • AS Unit 1 Spoken Expression and Response in Chinese (15%)
  • AS Unit 2 Understanding and Written Response in Chinese (35%)
  • A2 Unit 3 Understanding, Written Response and Research in Chinese (50%)

CHARGEABLE MATERIALS
None

COURSE REQUIREMENTS
Students should be able to speak and write Chinese to GCSE grade 6 standard or be native speakers.

Classical Civilisation *New for 2024

Students will have the opportunity to learn about the culture, history and society of the ancient Greeks and Romans. Students will read two of the most famous and enduring epics from the time period; the Aeneid and the Odyssey, and study in depth the stories in their social and political context. As well as this, they will study the culture and art of Greek and Roman society, including visual art, drama, poetry, biographies and architecture, developing their skills in the interpretation of different forms of art as they learn about the social function of the pieces. The last module will use similar sources to explore the beliefs and ideas of people in the ancient world and the relationships they had with each other and with the world around them.

https://www.ocr.org.uk/images/315133-specification-accredited-a-level-classical-civilisation-h408.pdf

Criminology Level 3 Diploma *New for 2024

(The Diploma is the equivalent of an A level and students will achieve the same grades as A Levels (A* – E). However, unlike A levels this course is examined through a combination of coursework and formal examinations.)

 

The Diploma will give students the opportunity to develop an understanding of the different types of crime. From looking at reasons people have for not reporting crime through to how this provides an understanding of the complexity of behaviours and social implications of criminality. Students will explore the theories behind why people commit crimes and the difference between criminal behaviour and deviance. Moving on students will develop an understanding of the criminal justice system from the moment a crime has been identified to the verdict. Finally evaluating the effectiveness of social control to deliver a criminal justice policy.

https://www.eduqas.co.uk/media/yzqlsmq4/wjec-applied-diploma-in-criminology-spec-e-22-06-22-2.pdf

Design and Technology Edexcel

A Level Design Technology will equip students with problem solving and design skills enabling them to recognise design needs. They will use creativity and imagination when applying iterative design processes to develop and modify designs, and to design and make prototypes that solve real world problems, considering their own and others’ needs, wants, aspirations and values.

UNITS OF STUDY

  • Materials
  • Performance characteristics of materials
  • Processes and techniques
  • Digital technologies
  • Factors influencing the development of products
  • Effects of technological developments
  • Potential hazards and risk assessment
  • Features of manufacturing industries
  • Designing for maintenance and a cleaner environment
  • Current legislation
  • Information handling, Modelling and forward planning
  • Further processes and techniques

ASSESSMENT

  • Component 1 – Principles of Design and Technology 2hours 30 minutes (50%)
  • Component 2 – Independent Design and Make Project 40 sides A3 paper (50%)

CHARGEABLE MATERIALS
Contributions towards the independent design and make project may be required.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS
No previous knowledge is required but a previous qualification in Design Technology would be helpful. Standard Sixth Form entry applies.

Drama and Theatre Studies Pearson Edexcel

The A Level qualification in Drama and Theatre Studies encourages creativity, focusing on practical work that reflects twenty-first-century practice. Students will explore the performance, directorial and design roles that are central to the theatre-making process and have the opportunity to create and develop their own performance ideas.

UNITS OF STUDY

  • Component 1: Devising an original piece of theatre
  • Component 2: Text in Performance
  • Component 3: Theatre Makers in Practice

ASSESSMENT

  • Component 1 is internally assessed and externally moderated (40%)
  • Component 2 is externally assessed by a visiting examiner (20%)
  • Component 3 is a written exam externally marked (40%)

CHARGEABLE MATERIALS
Theatre visits and visiting practitioner workshops.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS

Standard Saint Felix Sixth Form GCSE entry requirements and GCSE Drama at Grade 5 and above is preferable though not essential.

EAL - IELTS British Council and Cambridge Assessment English

Students with English as an Additional Language are examined in IELTS (International English Language Testing System) if they want to study at universities where English is the medium of communication. EAL lessons prepare students for IELTS by developing their understanding of academic language and increasing the competency of their reading, writing, speaking and listening skills.

UNITS OF STUDY
Units of study are based around developing the four skills of reading, writing, speaking and listening through a broad range of topics, including health, food and diet, education, the environment, science and technology, town and country, work, social changes, crime and the law, global problems, the arts, business and the media.

ASSESSMENT
IELTS is assessed by 4 examinations:

  • Reading – a one-hour examination of three reading passages with a total of forty questions, including multiple-choice, sentence completion, short answer questions, and true/false/not given statements.
  • Writing – a one-hour examination of two writing tasks: a written summary of given data represented in the form of a graph, table, diagram or map; and an essay in response to a given point of view, argument or problem.
  • Speaking – a fifteen-minute oral interview between the student and the examiner.
  • Listening – a thirty-minute test of listening comprehension based on monologues and dialogues with a total of forty questions including multiple-choice, note completion, and diagram completion.

CHARGEABLE MATERIALS
None

COURSE REQUIREMENTS
Ideally, students should be starting the course with a minimum IELTS Band 5 or equivalent, however additional EAL lessons can be provided at an extra cost for those whose level of English is weaker.

Economics AQA

Economics considers how societies can make the best use of the limited resources available to them. It encourages you to think about many of the issues that society faces today. It will help you to understand, and answer many important questions such as:

How do societies use finite resources to provide the highest possible standard of living for their citizens?
Why do some people get paid much more than others?
What does the globalisation of world markets mean for consumers, businesses and governments?

UNITS OF STUDY

  • Basic Economic Ideas and Resource Allocation
  • The Price System and the Micro Economy
  • Individuals, firms, markets and market failure
  • The national and international economy
  • Government Microeconomic Intervention
  • The Macro Economy
  • Government Macro Intervention

ASSESSMENT

  • Paper 1 – Markets and Market Failure – 2 hour written paper
  • Paper 2 – National and International Economy – 2 hour written paper
  • Paper 3 – Economic Principles and Issues – 2 hour written paper

CHARGEABLE MATERIALS
None

COURSE REQUIREMENTS
No previous knowledge is required. Standard Sixth Form entry applies.

English Literature Edexcel

English Literature remains a highly regarded and popular subject for study at A Level and university. The skills developed – interpreting texts, developing coherent arguments, evaluating evidence, – are relevant across academic disciplines and help to qualify students for a number of potential careers including media, law and teaching. Beyond the utility of the subject, the study of English Literature gives students an insight into culture and society and an understanding of ways in which meaning and language is constructed. A key theme throughout the course is the representation of women in the texts studied.

UNITS OF STUDY

  • Year 1
    • Never Let Me Go, Frankenstein, Poetry of the Decade, A Streetcar Named Desire
  • Year 2
    • Othello, The Wife of Bath, two chosen coursework texts

ASSESSMENT
The A level is assessed internally (with external moderation) and externally.

  • Paper 1 (2 1/2 hours) – Poetry and Drama pre-1900 (40%)
  • Paper 2 (2 1/2 hours) – Comparative and Contextual Studies (40%)
  • Paper 3 – Coursework (Internal Assessment) – a close reading task of 1000 words and a comparative essay of 2000 words (20%)

CHARGEABLE MATERIALS
As students will normally annotate texts, they are required to purchase their own copies. Although critical commentaries and analyses are provided, students are again, encouraged to obtain their own copies.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS
To commence an A Level course in English Literature it is usual to have taken GCSE English Language and English Literature and achieved a Grade 5 or above. Equally important is a love of literature and the ability and desire to read widely around the set texts.

English Language

Please note that English Language will be offered subject to sufficient demand.

If you are interested in this option, please email: jharlock@stfelix.co.uk

Further details, course content and examination boards would be available on request

(Art and Design) Fine Art AQA

A practical subject based on key skills and areas of drawing, painting, printmaking, sculpture and multi-media, working in two and three dimensions. Offering opportunities to gain an understanding of the creative process, the ability to observe and think, to solve problems and to communicate in a visual way. It enables students to work independently and to make their own discoveries by exploring ideas, other artists’ work, and using different materials and techniques, giving students the skills and knowledge to create personal and imaginative work.

UNITS OF STUDY
Coursework

  • Introductory phase learning skills, techniques and processes in painting, printmaking and drawing.
  • Formal analysis of the work of key artists and introduction to different styles.
  • Planning and creating a Personal Investigation supported with an extended essay.

Externally Set Assignment – Supervised Time
An extended practical project – 15-hour period

ASSESSMENT

  • Component 1 – Personal Investigation (60%)
  • Component 2 – Externally set assignment & Supervised Time of 15 hours (40%)

CHARGEABLE MATERIALS
A workbox and equipment such as brushes, scissors, glue and a range of basic wet and dry media will be provided at a one-off charge of £40 and all sketchbooks are chargeable.

Framing and mounting of work for examination will be charged at cost price.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS
Art and Design at GCSE is desirable. Candidates without a prior qualification will be considered on merit.

(Modern Foreign Languages) French AQA

The A Level course builds on the knowledge, understanding and skills gained at GCSE. Throughout the two-year course, students will learn the language in the context of French-speaking countries and the issues and influences which have shaped them. They study technological and social change, looking at diversity and the benefits it brings. They will also study highlights of French-speaking artistic culture, including francophone music and cinema, and learn about political engagement in the French-speaking world. Students will have the opportunity to carry out independent research on an area of their choice.

Studying French A-Level will:

  • Improve your career options
  • Develop your comprehension of the world and your communication skills
  • Increase your education opportunities
  • Enhance your travel and cultural experiences

UNITS OF STUDY

  • Aspects of French-speaking society : current trends and current issues
  • Artistic culture in the French speaking world
  • Aspects of political life in the French speaking world
  • Literary texts and films
  • Individual research project

ASSESSMENT
The A Level is assessed by 3 examinations:

  • Paper 1: Listening, Reading and Writing 2 hours 30 minutes – 100 marks. 50% of A Level
  • Paper 2: Writing 2 hours 80 marks. 20% of A Level
  • Paper 3: Speaking 21–23 minutes (including 5 minutes preparation time) 60 marks. 30% of A Level

CHARGEABLE MATERIALS
No chargeable materials although AQA workbooks will be recommended. Approximate cost of £10.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS
This course is for students who wish to build upon the skills gained at GCSE level at grade 6 or above.

Further Mathematics Edexcel

It is a significant advantage to have studied at least some A Level Further Mathematics if you wish to pursue your study of Mathematics, or indeed any scientific-based subject such as Physics or Engineering, at university. With a variety of optional modules available one can tailor the A Level to suit strengths and preferences.

UNITS OF STUDY

  • Year 1 Core Pure Mathematics
  • Year 1 Further Mathematics Option (3A-3D)
  • Year 2 Core Pure Mathematics
  • Year 2 Further Mathematics Option (4A-4G)

ASSESSMENT
The A Level is assessed by four 1 hour 30-minute-long written examinations carrying equal weight of 75 marks each:

  • Paper 1 – Pure Mathematics (9FM0/01)
  • Paper 2 – Pure Mathematics (9FM0/02)
  • Paper 3 – Option 1 (9FM0/3A-3D)
  • Paper 4 – Option 2 (9FM0/4A-4G)

CHARGEABLE MATERIALS
None, although a calculator that has an iterative function and the ability to compute summary statistics and access probabilities from standard statistical distributions is essential: The Mathematics Department recommends the CASIO fx-991 EX and is the calculator used by our A Level teachers themselves.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS
To commence an A Level course in Further Mathematics it is usual to have taken GCSE Mathematics Higher Tier and achieved a Grade 7 or above and be expecting to achieve at least a grade B in A Level Mathematics. A good level of English is also required to access the content.

Geography

Geography is rarely out of the news. From hazards such as volcanoes and tsunamis to global warming, geopolitical trade blocs and globalisation, students are faced with challenges at all scales. Students will need to consider their perceptions of the world and the way they are able to use investigative and analytical skills to understand what is going on.

UNITS OF STUDY

  • Water and carbon cycles
  • Coastal systems and landscapes
  • Hazards
  • Global systems and global governance
  • Changing places
  • Contemporary urban environments

ASSESSMENT

  • Paper 1 – Multiple choice, short answer and extended prose (40%)
  • Paper 2 – Multiple choice, short answer and extended prose (40%)
  • Fieldwork investigation – (20%)

CHARGEABLE MATERIALS
None

COURSE REQUIREMENTS
No previous knowledge is needed, standard Saint Felix Sixth Form entry requirements

History Edexcel

History at post-16 teaches students to never to accept the written or spoken word at face value; to discriminate between fact and fiction and to understand that all human concerns are complex and should be judged with care, and without emotion. These are valuable skills to take into the workplace and life in general.

UNITS OF STUDY

  • England, 1509-1603: Authority, Nation and Religion. (Paper 1)
  • Luther and the German Reformation, c 1515-55. (Paper 2)
  • The witch craze in Britain, Europe and North America, c 1580-1750. (Paper 3)
  • Coursework: An internally assessed and externally moderated piece of work that allows students to select and investigate a historical controversy of their choice. An example might be: To what extent was German militarism responsible for the outbreak of the First World War?

ASSESSMENT
The A Level is assessed in three exams and a piece of coursework

  • Paper 1 (30%)
  • Paper 2- (20%)
  • Paper 3- (30%)
  • Unit 4- (20%)

CHARGEABLE MATERIALS
None

COURSE REQUIREMENTS
To have achieved at least

Latin OCR

Latin is widely accepted (and in many cases positively admired) for university entrance whether or not students continue studying the subject, due to the huge amount of transferable skills derived from learning the language and analysing the literature. The skills and disciplines needed to succeed in the subject are widely admired by a diverse range of potential employers.

UNITS OF STUDY

  • Language: Building on language knowledge from GCSE with a wider range of vocabulary and more complex grammar.
  • Prose: Study of two prose set texts in their historical and literary context.
  • Verse: Study of two verse set texts in their historical and literary context.

ASSESSMENT
A Level Latin is assessed by four examinations:

  • Unseen Translation – Translation of unseen prose and unseen verse into English. (33%)
  • Prose Composition OR Comprehension translation of English into Latin (prose composition) OR translation and comprehension questions on a passage of unseen Latin. (17%)
  • Prose Literature – Translation and critical analysis of two prose set texts. (25%)
  • Verse Literature – Translation and critical analysis of two verse set texts. (25%)

CHARGEABLE MATERIALS
None

COURSE REQUIREMENTS
Latin at GCSE grade 5 and standard Saint Felix Sixth Form GCSE entry requirements.

Mathematics Edexcel

It goes without saying that an A Level in Mathematics is, if not prescribed as essential, of at least enormous benefit as a preparation for Higher Education courses such as Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry and Engineering as well as broadening one’s experience of how the subject relates to the world in general. It is, simply, a very useful qualification to possess in any walk of life.

UNITS OF STUDY

  • Year 1 Pure Mathematics
  • Year 1 Statistics and Mechanics
  • Year 2 Pure Mathematics
  • Year 2 Statistics and Mechanics

ASSESSMENT
The A Level is assessed by three 2-hour written examinations carrying equal weight of 100 marks each.

  • Paper 1 – Pure Mathematics (9MA0/01)
  • Paper 2 – Pure Mathematics (9MA0/02)
  • Paper 3 – Statistics and Mechanics (marks split 50/50) (9MA0/03)

CHARGEABLE MATERIALS
None, although a calculator that has an iterative function and the ability to compute summary statistics and access probabilities from standard statistical distributions is essential: the Mathematics Department recommends the CASIO fx-991 EX and is the calculator used by our A Level teachers themselves.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS
To commence an A Level course in Mathematics it is usual to have taken GCSE Mathematics Higher Tier and achieved a grade 7 or above. Students with Grade 6 may find they will struggle with the more challenging content as well as the pace of learning, but students are considered on an individual basis. A good level of English is also required to access the content.

Music AQA

For many musicians, music is about performing or composing and both of these are at the heart of the A Level Music course. However, to become a well-rounded musician, an understanding of different genres and styles of music through time is essential and this is provided through an in-depth study of a wide range of pieces (from classical music to popular, jazz, music for theatre and media), which underpins the practical work. The course is an excellent preparation for further training at university, specialist music college or conservatoire, leading to a career in the music industry. It is also an excellent complement to A Levels in any other field and will give you a life-long enjoyment of music of all kinds, both as a listener and a performer.

UNITS OF STUDY
Appraising Music (listening, analysis, contextual understanding)
Students will study the baroque solo concerto, music from Mozart’s operas and romantic piano music of Chopin, Brahms and Grieg. They will also further their musical understanding of two of the following topics:

  • Pop music
  • Music for media
  • Music for theatre
  • Jazz
  • Contemporary traditional music
  • Art music since 1910.

Performance
A recital lasting between 10 and 12 minutes. This will be performed on a solo instrument with accompaniment, but it may also feature ensemble performances.

Composition
Students will compose 2 pieces, one in response to a brief set by the exam board and the other a free composition. The combined duration of the compositions will be a minimum of four and a half minutes.

ASSESSMENT

  • Component 1 – examination – 40%
  • Component 2 – externally assessed performance – 35%
  • Component 3 – externally assessed composition – 25%

CHARGEABLE MATERIALS
You will need to purchase the AQA Anthology of Music for A Level. You will also be expected to take individual instrumental or vocal lessons with a private teacher, in or out of school.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS
You should have at least Grade 5 or equivalent on your first instrument (or voice) and a knowledge of music theory of at least Grade 5 standard; if you have studied Music at GCSE, you should have achieved Grade 6 or above.

Art and Design AQA

Photography is about looking, exploring, selecting, learning, thinking and communicating ideas. It is one of the most ubiquitous art forms in the world today and everyone who has a mobile phone has greater access to photography than ever before. There are many genres of photography and as consumers we experience photographic images in many contexts. An understanding of these genres and contexts and the critical use of the visual language informs the picture- making process.

UNITS OF STUDY

Coursework

  • Diagnostic introduction to digital photography image-capture, key considerations when selecting and framing subject matter. Post-production – key editing techniques and processes use of editing software and; editing a shot.
  • Visual studies of the work of key photographers and introduction to different genres, subject specific vocabulary, and formal analysis techniques. Exhibition visits and write-ups.
  • Practical work, short tasks and extended projects based on specified starting points. Research skills.
  • Development of critical thinking through reviewing and refining ideas.
  • Planning and creating a Personal Investigation supported by an extended essay.

Externally set assignment – supervised time: An extended practical project based on a starting point set by the examination board, culminating in a 15-hour period of supervised independent work.

ASSESSMENT

  • Component 1 – Personal Investigation (60%)
  • Component 2 – Externally set assignment & Supervised Time of 15 hours (40%)

CHARGEABLE MATERIALS
Consumable materials are charged for on a pro-rata basis together with a termly contribution to the cost of ink. There will also be framing costs at the end of the course.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS
Students should have their own digital SLR camera by which their commitment to the subject is demonstrated and they are able to take full advantage of photo opportunities away from school. GCSE Photography or Art are of great benefit to successful study as are well-developed visual literacy skills and a genuine interest in the subject.

Physical Education OCR

Ever wondered why some people can run faster than others? How your personality affects your performance? How you could become an elite sports performer? Why people take drugs? How technology can help you? These are just a few of the questions studying Physical Education could help you answer.

UNITS OF STUDY

  • Physiological factors affecting performance applied anatomy & physiology, exercise physiology & biomechanics
  • Psychological factors affecting performance psychology and skills acquisition
  • Socio-cultural issues in physical education sport and society, technology & contemporary issues in physical activity
  • Performance in PE

ASSESSMENT
The A Level is assessed by three written examinations, practical performance and oral analysis of performance in one activity.

  • Paper one – multiple choice questions, short answer questions and one synoptic question (30%)
  • Paper two – multiple choice questions, short answer questions and a synoptic question (20%)
  • Paper three – multiple choice questions, short answer questions and a synoptic question (20%)
  • Practical performance – Performance or coaching in one activity (15%)
  • Analysis of performance – Oral (15%)

CHARGEABLE MATERIALS
N/A

COURSE REQUIREMENTS
Students should have achieved a Grade 5 or above in Science. It would be beneficial to have studied GCSE PE but NOT essential. You must play one sport (taken from an approved list provided by the examination board) on a regular and competitive basis or be coaching performers over the age of 13 on a regular basis in one sport.

Physics Edexcel

Physics is a creative subject – The concepts are man-made. This is just as creative as composing music or writing a novel. Physics gives you a new appreciation of the world around you. Viewing a rainbow, you can marvel at the interactions between photons and electrons occurring when light from the sun strikes water droplets in the sky. Physics is intellectually challenging, and it is rewarding when you succeed at something that is difficult.

UNITS OF STUDY

  • Unit 1: Physics on the Go – Rectilinear motion; forces; energy and power; fluid flow and viscosity; properties of materials and Young’s modulus.
  • Unit 2: Physics at Work – Waves; refraction; polarisation; diffraction; standing waves; Doppler effect; current electricity; photons; wave-particle duality.
  • Unit 3: Physics on the Move – Momentum; circular motion; electric and magnetic fields; capacitors and discharge; particle physics; Standard Model; de Broglie.
  • Unit 4: Physics from Creation to Collapse – Thermal energy; specific heat; ideal gas equation; Boltzmann constant; nuclear decay; oscillations; SHM; astrophysics; gravitational fields; cosmology; fusion.

ASSESSMENT

  • Paper 1 – 30%
  • Paper 2 – 30%
  • Paper 3 – 40%

In addition, there is an assessment of practical skills. This is partly assessed by the completion of Core Practical tasks, and partly by assessment of practical skills within the written papers.

CHARGEABLE MATERIALS
None

COURSE REQUIREMENTS
Ideally, students should have GCSE grade 7 in Physics and a grade 6 in Mathematics. If you are not a native English speaker, an IELTs score of 5.5 to 6 will enable you to access the course.

Psychology AQA

The A Level Psychology course introduces you to the many explanations psychologists offer for why people think, feel and behave the way they do. The course will equip students with the practical skills and research methods knowledge to enable them to undertake psychological research and realise the application of Psychology to the real world. It is a valuable A Level for anyone considering person-centred courses at university, including nursing, speech and language therapy, education, criminology and medicine, as well as pursuing Psychology at undergraduate level.

UNITS OF STUDY

  • Paper 1: Introductory Topics in Psychology: Social Influence, Memory, Attachment and Psychopathology
  • Paper 2: Psychology in Context: Research Methods, Approaches and Biopsychology.
  • Paper 3: Issues and Options in Psychology: Issues and Debates, Aggression, Cognitive Development and Schizophrenia.

ASSESSMENT
A Level Psychology is assessed by three, two-hour written examinations.
Each exam is worth 33% of the final A Level grade.

CHARGEABLE MATERIALS
None

COURSE REQUIREMENTS
Standard Saint Felix Sixth Form GCSE entry requirements.

Religious Education (Philosophy and Ethics) OCR *New for 2024

The OCR Religious Studies AS/A Level develops knowledge and understanding of religious beliefs and teachings, alongside modules on Philosophy and Ethics. By the end of the course, students will be able to make balanced and informed arguments in response to religious, philosophical and ethical issues.

UNITS OF STUDY
Paper 1: Philosophy of religion

  • Ancient philosophical influences of Plato and Aristotle
  • The nature of the soul, mind and body including the thinking of Plato and Aristotle
  • Arguments about the existence or non-existence of God, including the Teleological (design) argument, the Cosmological argument, the Ontological argument and challenges from observations.
  • The nature and impact of religious experience including conversion and mysticism
  • The challenge for religious belief of the problem of evil

Paper 2: Religion and Ethics

  • Normative ethical theories
  • The application of ethical theory to two contemporary issues of importance, including euthanasia and business ethics.

Paper 3: Developments in religious thought

  • Religious beliefs, values and teachings, their interconnections and how they vary historically and in the contemporary world
  • Sources of religious wisdom and authority
  • Practices which shape and express religious identity, and how these vary within a tradition in the context of Christianity

ASSESSMENT

The A Level is assessed by 3 written examinations.

CHARGEABLE MATERIALS
None.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS
Standard Saint Felix Sixth Form GCSE entry requirements.
You do not need to have studied GCSE Religious Education to choose to study the subject at A level.

Modern Foreign Languages - Spanish AQA

The A Level Spanish course aims to build upon the confidence and competence in the language gained at GCSE. Ideas and attitudes on a range of topics are developed. Students explore their own interests through the medium of Spanish and are offered insights into the culture ad civilisation of Spanish speaking countries as well as the nature of language itself.

The course concentrates on developing oral fluency and conversation skills in A Level speaking tests. It provides a range of stimulating and absorbing study topics with contemporary, literary and cultural content.

Students will gain:

  • Lasting appreciation of language learning.
  • Ability to comprehend Spanish in a wide range of context.
  • Ability to communicate readily in Spanish for a variety of purposes.
  • Useful knowledge of insights into Spanish cultures, both contemporary and historic.
  • Valuable skills for foreign travel, further education and employment with many of the world’s leading economies demanding employees who are Spanish speakers.

UNITS OF STUDY

  • Aspects of Hispanic society
  • Multiculturalism in Hispanic society
  • Artistic culture in the Hispanic world
  • Aspects of political life in the Hispanic world
  • Literary texts and films

ASSESSMENT
The A Level is assessed by 3 examinations:

  • Paper 1: Listening, Reading and Writing 2 hours 30 minutes. 100 marks. 50%
  • Paper 2: Writing 2 hours. 80 marks. 20%
  • Paper 3: Speaking 21–23 minutes (including 5 minutes preparation time) 60 marks. 30%

CHARGEABLE MATERIALS
None, although AQA workbooks will be recommended to aid revision. Could cost around £4.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS
This course is for students who wish to build upon the skills gained at GCSE level at grade 5 or above.

Textile Design AQA

Students will be introduced to a variety of experiences that explore a range of textile media, processes and techniques. Students will be working in one or more areas of textile design, such as fashion design, fashion textiles, costume design, digital textiles, printed/dyed textiles, constructed textiles and art textiles. Students will relate their work to relevant images, artefacts and resources and extend their understanding of different contexts, styles, genres and traditions.

UNITS OF STUDY
Coursework

  • Introductory phase learning skills, techniques and processes.
  • Formal analysis of the work to relevant images, artefacts and resources and introduction to different styles.
  • Planning and creating a Personal Investigation supported with an extended essay.

Externally Set Assignment – Supervised Time
An extended practical project – 15-hour period

ASSESSMENT

  • Component 1 – Personal investigation (60%)
  • Component 2 – Externally set assignment (40%)

CHARGEABLE MATERIALS
All sketchbooks are chargeable. On occasion, materials for independent work can be ordered through the department and placed on the school bill.

COURSE REQUIREMENTS
Art and Design at GCSE level is desirable. Candidates without a prior qualification will be considered on merit.

The Extended Project Qualification (EPQ)

What is the Extended Project Qualification?
The Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) is an independent research project which is worth the equivalent of half an A Level. Alongside your other A Level qualifications, you will have the opportunity to research an academic question that you construct yourself. From your research, you will then write a mini dissertation to summarise and evaluate your findings. You also have to be able to demonstrate that you have spent 120 hours of work on your EPQ. This will be through an activity log.

Your project can be centred around one of your A Level subjects, or you can investigate a topic outside of your academic studies that can extend your knowledge about an area of interest.

Examples of past EPQ questions include:

  • Should vaccinations be compulsory for all primary school children in the UK?
  • Can the study of biology and psychology help to explain why criminals commit crimes?
  • Are electric cars actually better for the environment?
  • To what extent do nuclear weapons have a role in contemporary international relations?

How is the EPQ examined?
There is no examination for the EPQ, but you are awarded marks for various academic activities:

  • Managing the project, including the project proposal and an activity log.
  • Finding and using resources, including using an academic referencing system.
  • Developing the final research project. This is the written dissertation.
  • Evaluation of your EPQ, including an oral presentation to summarise your project.

How will the EPQ be taught?
The EPQ is an independent project and you need to be able to plan and manage your own time. However, in the early stages of your project, you will have taught sessions which will help you develop the core academic skills that you need to be successful in you the EPQ. This includes accessing resources, referencing conventions and academic writing. You will also have regular individual tutorials to check your progress.

Why should I consider completing an EPQ?
The EPQ is an excellent opportunity to develop academic knowledge and skills that will support you in your A Level studies. Recent research has also concluded that completing EPQ also enhances academic achievement across other subjects.1 The EPQ also support you with the transition to university, and completing the EPQ is actively encouraged by universities including Cambridge, Oxford and Russell Group institutions.

How do I apply to do an EPQ?
Year 12 Students can apply to do an EPQ in the spring term. To be successful in securing a place on the EPQ course you need to be able to demonstrate a positive attitude to learning, excellent attendance, as well achieving consistently high grades in your main A Level subjects.

For more information, please contact Mrs Harlock, Head of Sixth Form: jharlock@stfelix.co.uk

You will be expected to maintain a disciplined level of independent study and be punctual with your work deadlines. There is an emphasis on learning outside the classroom and one of the challenges of your Sixth Form years is to maintain a sensible and healthy work-life balance. You may have a job outside school during this time and you will certainly make new friends and spend some time socialising; we are here to support you and ensure that you meet your targets set by the Head of Sixth Form.

 

Talk to us now about our Sixth Form and exciting course provision.