Link to OFSTED Report
Music Edexcel GCE Advanced

A Level Music tends to be studied by girls with a passion for the subject. Some take the subject to further enhance their own musical interests, though many go on to either read Music at university, or study performing at a conservatoire. All are welcome.evel Music tends to be studied by girls with a passion for the subject. Some take the subject to further enhance their own musical interests, though many go on to either read Music at university, or study performing at a conservatoire. All are welcome.

Whilst it is not essential to have studied Music at GCSE, it is becoming increasingly useful and, ideally, pupils who do not possess a GCSE in Music should have passed grade 5 theory. Of far more importance however, is that all girls taking this subject should be committed to it, and to the school music-making programme.

The course content is split between the disciplines of listening and analysis, performing, and composing. There is a slightly greater emphasis on the listening and analysis components. The performing component requires pupils to perform one or more pieces as a public recital. The total time across all pieces must be a minimum of 8 minutes and, ideally, the performance should be of at least grade 7 standard. Performances can be either solo or ensemble.

It is expected that pupils opting for A Level Music at TWGGS join in wholeheartedly with all of the extra-curricular activities provided by the department. The composing component takes on board the skills of composition acquired at GCSE and further develops them with more detailed and technical study. Pupils will learn how to compose in specific idioms and specifically to write harmony in four parts and to understand how to compose 2 part counterpoint.

The listening and analysis component also builds on GCSE work. Pupils will develop a firm understanding of the styles and conventions of different periods of classical music as well as the wider fields of Popular Music and Jazz, Film, and Fusions. A detailed study of selected areas published in an anthology by the board provides a focus for this.

A LEVEL EXAMINATION

COMPONENT   WEIGHTING
1 Performing (solo and/or ensemble)
A public performance of one or more pieces with a total running time of at least 8 minutes. A minimum standard of Grade 7 is desirable.
30%
2 Composing
A total of two compositions, one to a brief set by Pearson (Bach Harmony) and one either free composition or also to a brief.
Total time across both submissions is a minimum of 6 minutes.
30%
3 Appraising
One written paper of 2 hours duration comprised of 2 sections.
Section A: Areas of Study and Dictation.
  • Three questions related to the set works
  • One short melody/rhythm completion exercise
Section B: Extended Response comprised of two essay questions.
  • Essay one asks pupils to draw links from their study of the set works to the music heard as an unfamiliar extract.
  • Essay two gives the choice of three questions based on the musical elements of one set work.
40%

Music is highly regarded by universities; the range and variety of skills developed through studying Music creates well-rounded, adaptable individuals who can employ both analytical and creative approaches to any situation. Music also encourages teamwork and self-motivation, lifelong skills that are invaluable in today’s workplace. Studying Music provides access to university and conservatoire Music courses as well as other more general higher education courses including Medicine and Dentistry.

Career Opportunities include: Performance, Composition, Conducting, Teaching, Music Production, Arts Administration, Artist Management, Events Management, and careers within the Armed Forces amongst others. However, it is important to recognise the value of Music in developing transferable skills vital for the competitive job market.





Also see related pages: Curriculum and Prospectus