Examination Board: Edexcel

Course Title:  Music

Why should I choose to study music?

You will enjoy listening to and taking part in making music in a variety of different styles, either through making your own pieces and/or performing on an instrument using voice.  You are interested in how music has been created. Perhaps you are thinking of using music in your career, need to demonstrate that you have excellent group work skills, have confidence or creativity, want to organise events or take part in the recording process.  If you are you thinking of working in a creative environment, composing, performing, researching, working in education, the music industry, or want to take music at higher education then this is the course for you!

What will I learn?

You will study music from 1700 to the modern era, composing, performing and analysing a variety of different musical styles such as Classical, Rock and Jazz. You will study 8 main set works with wider listening taking place throughout the course.

What will be expected of me?

We expect you to be motivated, committed and have a passion for music. We expect you to be involved in the life of the music department by taking part in performances and events both in and out of school (either on or off stage!). We expect you to listen to a variety of different styles of music in order to broaden your horizons. We expect you to practise your instrument/voice regularly (if applicable) and meet all deadlines set. Teamwork is essential within the music industry and you will be expected to complete group tasks with a variety of different people, and do these professionally. You will also be required to work independently on short and long term projects.

What skills will I develop?

The three main skills that you will develop as a musician are your compositional, performance and analytical skills. You will learn to compose in two contrasting musical styles, whilst improving both your solo and ensemble performance skills. Students regularly use both Cubase Elements 8 and Sibelius 6 as part of the compositional process. You will be exposed to a wide variety of musical styles and learn to analyse the music in great depth.  

How will I be assessed?

Unit 1 (30%) is a performance unit where students are given the opportunity to perform as soloists and within ensembles.  

Unit 2 (30%) requires students to compose two pieces of music that can be based on, but are not limited to, pieces that we study.  

Unit 3 (40%) is taken at the end of Year 11 and students are examined on set pieces that we study over the course.  

Where will this qualification lead me?

Achievement at GCSE level will lay a suitable foundation for further study of music at A level, or a possible career in the music industry.

Beyond The Curriculum

The music department is committed to the growth of music within the school and has recently started some brand new exciting ensembles.

Vocalise (Tuesday after school)

Choir (Wednesday lunchtime)

Instrumental Ensemble (Thursday after school)

Jazz Band (Friday Lunchtime)

Many informal groups do develop during the year, depending on the types of events that are running.

We offer lessons on the following instruments: flute, clarinet, saxophone, drums, guitar(s), bass and piano.

The department holds two large scale concerts per year (at the end of term 2 and term 4) and contributes to the whole school Arts Festival that takes place every Summer. The department welcomes students at break and lunchtimes, as well as after school (by appointment).