The Art learning area is a relaxed and supportive environment. You will be guided to develop your own independence and encouraged to explore and experiment in response to different sources. As this is a small learning area, we can guarantee your support will be personal and tailored to your needs.
You will be required to work in one or more area of Fine Art although you may explore overlapping areas and combinations of areas, such as: drawing and painting; mixed-media; collage and assemblage; sculpture; ceramics; installation; printmaking (relief, intaglio, screen processes and lithography); moving image; and photography.
A London trip is offered each year to visit galleries and exhibitions.
This course directly supports progression to further and higher education, providing students with a rich platform to inspire a lifelong interest in art and design.
To study Fine Art you will require a grade 5 or higher at GCSE Art, or a portfolio of work will be considered.
Biology is the study of living things, how they work, how they interact and how they affect the world around us.
The A-Level course is very wide-ranging, from molecular biology to the study of ecosystems, and our teachers will make sure the course is interesting and inspiring. Biology is a subject that is relevant to everyone throughout their life and will train you to thinkscientifically, a skill which is useful in all careers.
You will be taught by highly qualified and experienced teachers who have a passion for Biology and will challenge you to make sure that you gain the highest possible grade at the end of the course. You will have the chance to enter for local and national Biology competitions and St Wilfrid’s has had great success in these competitions in recent years.
A large proportion of our students enjoy Biology so much that they go on to study Biology-based degrees at university, a true measure of our success.
To study Biology you will require a grade 6 or higher in GCSE Biology or GCSE Combined Science. You must also have a grade 6 in Maths.
The new business specification is intended to be robust and challenging to students. The content is designed to engage students through topics and issues that are relevant in today’s society – for example, you will study key contemporary developments such as digital technology, business ethics and globalisation.
You will study business in a variety of contexts (e.g. large/small, UK-focused/global, service/ manufacturing) and consider the importance of the context of business in relation to:
• Decision making;
• The interrelated nature of business activities and how they affect competitiveness;
• The influences on functional decisions and plans, including ethical and environmental issues;
• The factors which might determine whether a decision is successful e.g. the quality of data and the degree of uncertainty.
To study Business you will require a grade 6 or higher in GCSE Business. If you have not previously studied business, you will require a 6 in English Language and a 5 in Maths.
The business world places a high value on the ability to research, analyse and evaluate information in order to make considered decisions and you will have the opportunity to gain these vital skills.
Alongside this, you will develop practical employability skills, including the ability to communicate effectively with both internal and external stakeholders, and to manage your time effectively.
You will cover a range of key business topics including: • How businesses evolve from small start-ups to large multinational organisations;
• Different business types and how the choice of business type might affect the objectives that are set; • The internal workings of businesses, including their internal structure and how different functional areas work together;
• External constraints under which a business must operate, such as legal, financial and ethical factors.
To study Business (OCR Level 3) you will require a grade 5 or higher in GCSE English and a 4 in Maths.
Chemistry is the science which looks at how all matter is composed, what its properties are and how it reacts and interacts with other matter. It helps you to understand how reactions can be used to form new substances, how easily and quickly they can be made and how you can analyse and identify them.
Sometimes described as the ‘hidden science’, Chemistry is not always recognised but its influence is felt in every aspect of our lives, e.g. clothing; food; fuels; building materials; cosmetics (from simple cleaning materials to expensive perfume); plastics; recycling; medicines; new technologies - all of these have their development rooted in Chemistry.
We teach Chemistry with four aims of developing the student:
• Who wants a career in Chemistry;
• Whose career demands a high Chemistry grade (e.g. Doctor, Dentist, Pharmacist, Chemical Engineer etc.);
• Who wants to know more about how our world works; • Who just loves the subject and simply wants to know more.
To study Chemistry you will require a grade 6 or higher in GCSE Chemistry or GCSE Combined Science. You must also have a grade 6 in Maths.
Advances in computing are transforming the way we work. Technology is everywhere and all of it relies on software. This course covers the fundamentals of computer science and develops a high level of programming skills. You will study how computers work - from understanding hardware to the way data is stored and processed.
Almost half the course is practical. You will spend a lot of time learning how to program. By the end of Year 12, you will be writing complex programs to solve given problems. In Year 13 you will undertake a practical computer project in which you are encouraged to solve or investigate an area of your own interest.
The main programming language used will be Python but you will also study functional programming. Students studying A-Level Mathematics alongside Computer Science find the course more accessible than those who do not. In addition, if you wish to take Computer Science at university, most courses require an A-Level in Mathematics.
To study Computer Science you will require a grade 6 or higher in GCSE Maths and be confident with Algebra. Students will also require a grade 5 or higher in Computer Science or another ICT-related course.
We have a vibrant Drama learning area at St Wilfrid’s, which offers a rich and diverse programme. A comprehensive exploration of the works of theatre practitioners (Berkoff, Brecht, Stanislavski and Artaud) will encourage you to push boundaries with your performances and work creatively at an impressive standard.
Recent students have gone on to graduate from musical theatre courses at the prestigious Bird College in London. Some of ourDrama students are currently in shows such as ‘Thriller Live’ on the West End and ‘Bring It On’. Former St Wilfrid’s students often come back to run workshops.
Extra opportunities include: drama workshops by professional theatre companies; whole-Academy productions where the Sixth Form students generally take the lead roles; theatre trips around the North West; London trip to watch West End productions and take part in professional workshops; tour exam work to local schools; extra-curricular rehearsals after school and in the holidays to provide the time that is needed
to truly perfect a performance (consequently, you will receive a substantial amount of one-to-one time with your tutor). You will also be kept up-to-date with arts news including audition information.
Theatre or Film Directing
To study Drama you will require a grade 5 or higher at GCSE Drama. Those who have not participated in GCSE Drama should have experience of drama in a practical setting and be keen to perform. Students will be informally assessed on their practical ability at the beginning of the course.
English Language is a popular subject here and our students study a range of fascinating topics such as language and gender, regional variation, the language of social groups, and child language acquisition.
You will learn to analyse the ways in which language is used by different groups in the real world. We also explore a range of written and spoken texts, learning to understand the complicated process by which texts ‘work’ by considering not only the purpose, genre and audience but also the society in which a text was written and the linguistic features used.
Over recent years, the results students have achieved have been fantastic. This is down to the hard work and dedication from specialist staff and the passion and enthusiasm shown by students. We also make sure that the choice of topic for your languageinvestigation – which is your coursework – is up to you: we give you guidance but will encourage you to pursue the area of English Language which interests you the most.
To study English Language, you will require a grade 6 or higher in GCSE English Language.
Everything that has ever been written in poetry, prose or drama is a record of the thoughts and ideas which people have had through the ages. By taking English Literature, you will be studying the history of what people have thought and felt.
This subject considers how and why writers make the choices they do, so that readers respond to the messages in their texts; this involves analysing the structure and language but also involves thinking about the contexts surrounding the production of the texts.
During the two years you will study a range of texts, from Ian McEwan’s novel Atonement, to Shakespeare’s King Lear and Arthur Miller’s play Death of a Salesman. The exam components of the course are centred on genre: tragedy and crime writing. This means that we look at the texts through the lens of these genres as a means of exploring meaning and interpretation. The coursework component allows you the freedom to pursue your own interests, studying a novel of your choice alongside critical theory.
To study English Literature, you will require a grade 5 or higher in GCSE English Language and a grade 6 or higher in GCSE English Literature.
This course helps students to develop their understanding of spoken and written French. You will learn to communicate confidently, clearly and effectively using increasingly accurate language.
You will also be encouraged to develop your use of complex and varied language as well as your critical insights into society, culture and the way of life in France and French-speaking countries. A wide range of topics will be explored whilst improving reading, listening, speaking and writing competencies, therefore ensuring this well-rounded subject is of real interest to universities.
In order to prepare for your AS/A2 programme, you should aim to read as much as possible in French to extend your knowledge of vocabulary. Try to watch some French films and listen to some French music. You should also regularly revise your grammar. Take every opportunity to speak French and, if at all possible, visit France or another French-speaking country.
To study French you will require a grade 6 or higher in GCSE French and a grade 6 or higher in English Language.
Geography is a broad and well-rounded curriculum, highly regarded by Russell Group Universities. You will develop a range of transferable skills, working on your analytical, investigative, numerical and written skills, as well as incorporating new technologies. The content will inspire you to engage critically with real world issues and places, and apply your knowledge, theory and skills to the world around you. Students grow as independent thinkers and as informed and engaged citizens, who understand the role and importance of geography as one of the key disciplines relevant to understanding the world’s changing peoples, places and environments.
Fieldwork is an integral part of your work giving you an experience of both human and physical fieldwork (you will complete 4 days in total across Y12 and Y13). You will learn a variety of data collection skills and test core topic theories learnt in the classroom. From this you will complete an independent piece of coursework worth 20% of your A-Level.
There is also the opportunity to become a Geography ambassador to enhance your CV or as part of enrichment, by helping out in a KS3/KS4 lesson and providing support to learners. This in turn develops your geographical understanding.
To study Geography you will require a grade 6 or higher in GCSE Geography (If you achieve a 5 in Geography, you may be accepted with a 6 or higher in both English and Maths).
This is a two-year course, equivalent to one A-Level, comprising of two external examinations and two coursework based units that are internally assessed.
Throughout the course you will study: human development from birth to adulthood; the health services; health and social care professionals; meeting the needs of individuals; and what support the services can provide. The course will highlight the careeropportunities available within the Health and Social Care sector and how these roles can make a significant difference to people’s lives in a positive way. Voluntary placements are encouraged during enrichment time. Students can gain skills and experiencesthat can be transferred to other professions and job roles. Typical placements may include: early years setting; nursery school; care home; special school; hospital; hospice; mental health unit; adult learning centre; or health centre.
Skills that you will develop include: good communication (to work with clients and professionals); teamwork; showing initiative; good time management; compassion; empathy; the importance of following guidelines and procedures in a health and social caresetting; and recognising/reflecting on your own personal skills.
Our results are consistently outstanding and our students continue to achieve and exceed their target grades. Students often go directly into employment in the sector or onto university.
Early Years Educator
Care and Support Work
To study Health and Social Care you will require a grade 4 or higher in GCSE English Language/Literature and Maths.
History is a challenging and rewarding A-Level subject. Students that take History do not just learn facts; they develop skills in analysis, problem solving, independent learning and communication.
Students who study history have the opportunity to explore events that have shaped the world we live in. Our topics cover a wide chronological, geographic and thematic range; from late medieval times to the present day; from the United States, to Russia; from the English Reformation to the US Civil Rights campaigns of the 1960s.
Our students also develop a number of important academic skills; including the ability to critically evaluate source material, and produce written arguments that are well structured, coherently expressed and fully supported by the careful selection of evidence.
To study History you will require a grade 6 or higher in GCSE History (If you achieve a 5 in History, you may be accepted with a grade 6 or higher in an English).
Studying Law at A-Level will allow you to develop problem-solving skills through the application of legal rules. It also develops analytical ability and critical thinking skills.
If you decide to study A-Level Law, you will join a team which believes that your academic achievement should be our complete focus. You will be encouraged to undertake work experience in a legal setting during the Year 12 summer enrichment week.
In the first unit, you will develop your knowledge and understanding of the nature of law and the English legal system. Following this you will study substantive law which requires the simple application of both criminal and tort law. These techniques will then be developed further in order to explore criminal, tort and contract law in greater depth.
To study Law you will require a grade 5 or higher in GCSE English Language or Literature and a grade 5 or higher in a GCSE in which you need to write essays (e.g. History, Geography or RE).
Mathematics complements many other subjects and is good training for the mind, helping to develop logical thinking and problem-solving skills. You will study pure mathematics, statistics and mechanics and cover a wide range of topics that broaden the knowledge gained at GCSE.
The pure mathematics units focus on the algebra, geometry, trigonometry and calculus content of the course. Alongside this is the study of statistics which extends the work on data analysis and probability, looking at hypothesis testing and the normaldistribution. This will really support you alongside subjects such as Biology, Geography and Psychology. Mechanics introduces topics such as mathematical modelling, kinematics, statics and dynamics and fits well with the study of Physics.
Students with mathematical qualifications are numerate and highly employable in a wide variety of areas. An A-Level in mathematics is essential for many degree courses and employment prospects are excellent.
To study Mathematics you will require a grade 6 or higher in GCSE Maths.
The Core Mathematics course aims to build on the knowledge, understanding and skills established at GCSE. This is a linear qualification which is designed to be studied over two years, with a final exam taken at the end of the course.
The focus is to consolidate your mathematical understanding and build both confidence and competence in applying a range of mathematical techniques to solve a variety of problems. The course introduces new techniques and concepts which will prepare you for further study and future employment within a broad range of academic, professional and technical fields.
Mathematical Studies will support you with the mathematical demands of higher education and work, where there is a distinct mathematical element, but where the mathematical demands do not stretch to a requirement for A-Level Mathematics. The government has recognised the need for more students to continue with mathematics and this course allows this with a more practical approach to certain areas. This course will provide the extra study and develop key problem- solving skills which are required by all employers.
To study Core Mathematics you will require a grade 5 or higher in GCSE Maths.
The Further Mathematics course is a separate course which stands alongside the main A-Level course.
Further Mathematics allows you to explore a greater range of topics in the mathematical canon, with the standard of the topics at the same level as the main A-Level course. Further Mathematics is not just for those who wish to study mathematics at university but anyone who does want to study a mathematics related degree should consider the advantage of having an A-Level in Further Mathematics.
You will study a wide variety of different areas of mathematics, including pure mathematics, decision mathematics and statistics.
Further Mathematics will enable you to improve your mathematical understanding and improve your standards in the A-Level Mathematics course. It will also considerably develop your problem-solving skills helping you to make a smooth transition on to any degree or training programme containing mathematical elements.
In order to study Further Mathematics you will require a grade 8 or 9 in GCSE Maths and have chosen to do the A-Level Mathematics course.
Is this a Mickey Mouse subject?
Yes. With companies like Disney reaching every corner of the earth and making global profits in the billions, the power, influence and effects of the media are certainly worth studying. Taking Media requires an inquisitive mind and is suitable for anyone who asks questions about the world in which we live.
You will study the following:
• How various media products are constructed;
• Why media products are made and who they are made for;
• The effects media products have on society and culture;
• The power of the media and the people behind it.
Lessons will involve analysing media products from broadcast, print and e-media platforms. We learn how and why they are constructed, in order to make our own products and to evaluate the effects of this mass communication on the audience and society.
To study Media Studies you will require a grade 4 or higher in GCSE English Language.
This course is designed for students who wish to follow a more traditional and classical career in Music. If you have aspirations to study for a traditional Music degree, then this is the course for you. Students who have studied Music A-Level at St Wilfrid’s have gone on to study this course at a variety of universities and conservatoires.
A-Level musicians are taught and guided on how to become creative, thoughtful and informed composers. Using the latest music technology, you will be able to compose in a range of genres. Guided by enthusiastic and professional musicians, you will have the opportunity to perform on a regular basis in a variety of formal and informal contexts. In addition, you will be encouraged to become critical, independent and reflective listeners who embrace all musical traditions.
There are many opportunities for musicians to perform at St Wilfrid’s. We have a vibrant and exciting extra-curricular programme of choirs, bands and instrumental ensembles. We regularly perform at different venues in the local and wider community.
To study Music you will require a grade 6 or higher in GCSE Music or ABRSM Grade 5 theory.
Digital Photography will provide you with a rich platform to inspire a lifelong interest in Photography. It is a highly creative subject that will challenge you to respond to given briefs and themes by developing your own ideas. You will have the opportunity to go on location shoots as well as explore studio techniques and learn how to select and manipulate images to communicate your ideas.
We have a fully-equipped iMac suite as well as industry standard editing software available across the Academy. We also have DSLR cameras available for every student who chooses to study Digital Photography, although you may be inspired to buy your own.
Students are required to work within one or more area of photography, such as: portraiture; landscape photography (working from the urban, rural and/or coastal environment); still life photography (working from objects or from the natural world); documentary photography; photojournalism; experimental imagery; multimedia; moving image (video, film, animation).
Students can progress onto university to study degrees within a variety of fields, including: photography; art & design; fine art; illustration; animation; film; journalism; advertising; graphics; fashion; and marketing.
To study Digital Photography you will require a GCSE in Photography or Art at grade 5 or higher, or a portfolio of work.
This course combines the development of your Physical Education theory, whilst encouraging you to develop your practical skill set. We are proud of our performance in A-Level PE, with students often going on to study sports-related courses at undergraduate level.
You will study how modern day sport has emerged alongside contemporary issues such as drugs, the media and the Olympics. You will learn about anatomy and physiology, examining in detail how the body’s systems affect sporting performance. In the second year, we look at biomechanics, energy systems and injury prevention.
The course has a component relating to how we learn skills and sports psychology as well as a practical element where performance is measured in one sport along with an assessed speech.
Sports Development Officer
To study Physical Education you will require a grade 6 or higher in GCSE PE. If you achieve a grade 5 in PE, you may be accepted with a grade 6 or higher in English or Science. Regular participation in at least one competitive sport is essential.
Physics is the science which underpins all others. It is ultimately the study of how the universe works. It is a dynamic subject which is constantly developing and there are always new ideas to be explored. Physicists ask the really ‘big questions’, such as: “How did the universe begin?”, “How does the Sun keep on shining?” and “What are the basic building blocks of matter?”. If you’re fascinated by these questions, you will enjoy studying Physics at A-Level and beyond.
Studying Physics at St Wilfrid’s will allow you to explore the subject and develop your skills in a supportive environment where the focus is on your development. You will be supported by a team who are committed to ensuring all students achieve their potential. We have an ‘open door’ policy and provide targeted support to ensure you reach your goals. In addition, we are passionate about Physics and our aim is for you to feel the same! You will be encouraged to pursue a deeper understanding of the subject through wider reading and we often provide opportunities to experience what studying Physics at university or pursuing a related career is like, by running trips or inviting in guest speakers to talk to you.
To study Physics you will require a grade 6 or higher in GCSE Physics or Combined Science. You must also have a grade 6 or higher in GCSE Maths.
This creative and thought-provoking qualification gives you the practical skills, theoretical knowledge and confidence to succeed in a number of careers, especially those in creative industries.
You will investigate social, cultural, environmental and economic influences on design and technology, whilst enjoying opportunities to put learning in to practice by producing products of your choice.
The course will encourage you to take design risks, show innovation and enterprise whilst considering your role as a responsible designer and citizen. Developing knowledge and experiences of real-world contexts or design and technological activities will support informed decision-making when analysing and exploring design concepts.
There is a strong emphasis on gaining insights into the creative, engineering and manufacturing industries. You will develop and demonstrate high-level skills using a wide range of equipment safely and independently, ensuring design meets the needs, wants and values of the users.
To study Product Design you will require a grade 5 or higher in GCSE Design Technology.
Psychology is the study of the mind and behaviour. You will enjoy a range of exciting topics such as forensic psychology, biopsychology and relationships. Students are given full support and one-to-one sessions are available with teachers.
In addition, there are many opportunities within the Psychology learning area for extra study, for example carrying out experiments and observations. Students are also given the opportunity to attend external revision conferences.
If you decide to study A-Level Psychology at St Wilfrid’s, you will be joining a team which believes that your high personal achievement should be our complete focus. We work hard to make sure our lessons are engaging and enjoyable and this is reflected in the positive feedback we have received from past and present students. Our examination results are strong, with many of our students achieving or exceeding their predicted grades.
To study Psychology you will require a grade 5 or higher in GCSE English Language, Maths and a Science.
Religious Studies is the social study of religion and religious practices. It focuses on contemporary issues and will encourage you to engage with these critically.
Although it is a traditional subject, it carries much relevance to understanding the modern world and
will give you a valuable insight into the truly diverse and multicultural society in which we live. Choosing Religious Studies will help you develop a much better understanding of yourself and the society in which you live, whilst also helping you to become logical, open- minded and analytical in thought. You will study three modules at St Wilfrid’s which are Philosophy of Religion, Religion and Ethics and, New Testament Studies.
Religious Studies is a rigorous A-Level, akin to philosophy in its demands and degree of difficulty, and excellent preparation for a number of popular and demanding undergraduate courses. The skills learned by doing Religious Studies are highly valued in many occupations and useful for entry to many degrees.
To study Religious Studies you will require a grade 5 or higher in two essay-based GCSE subjects, preferably including full course RE, or a grade 7 in short course RE.
The Level 3 Cambridge Technical Extended Certificate in Applied Science offers students a science course primarily designed to lead directly into employment, although many students will continue on to further education.
The course covers a range of science content covering Chemistry, Biology and Physics, with a focus on how the science can be applied in a vocational setting and how the skills would be used in a relevant workplace. e.g. a laboratory technician or an environmental officer in field testing. It is assessed with both external exams (50%) and internally moderated coursework (50%).
If you have a strong interest in science matched with a good work ethic and an ability to work within coursework deadlines, then this course is ideal. It not only provides you with sound scientific knowledge but is an excellent entry point to working in a scientific environment.
To study Applied Science you will require a grade 5 or higher in a GCSE Science or GCSE Combined Science. You must also have a grade 5 in Maths.
Sociology is the study of human behaviour. It is concerned with humans in their collective aspect and encompasses all group activities, whether economic, social, political or religious.
You will study a wide range of interesting and exciting sociological topics such as community, deviant behaviour, family, social change and specific problems such as crime, educational failure and divorce.
Studying Sociology will help you understand our society and our own human social behaviour.
If you decide to study A-Level Sociology you will be joining a team which believes that your high personal achievement should be our complete focus.
To study Sociology you will require a grade 5 or higher in GCSE English Language and one other essay-based subject.
A-Level Design and Technology: Fashion and Textiles promotes and develops knowledge and understanding of how historical, social and technological factors influence design, manufacture, fashion and trends.
You will be encouraged and given opportunities to explore, challenge and develop your practical skills following the two core aspects of:
• Technical principles;
• Designing and making principles.
You will be given opportunities to work with a range of equipment, utilising a wide variety of different products, construction and decorative techniques and materials in order to create high quality products. You will learn how to make informed design decisions to support high-level prototyping. Testing and evaluation will help ensure that you create a product that meets your client’s needs.
The modern textile industry offers a broad range of career opportunities from raw material processing to the design and creation of soft furnishings and interior design and fashion. Fashion and Textiles is used across a broad spectrum of industries and you could become part of any one of these diverse sectors with this qualification as a platform.
To study Fashion and Textiles you will require a grade 5 or higher in GCSE Design Technology.
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