Sixth Form Curriculum

Sixth Form Curriculum

Pupils are introduced to methods of independent study in preparation for A Levels and university. Academic progress is tracked throughout the two years so that we can offer bespoke advice - stretching and challenging all students to reach their potential.

We offer a diverse range of A Level options in addition to A Levels, we also offer the following vocational courses, which are all equivalent to one A-level:

  • Food Science and Nutrition (Level 3 Diploma)
  • Marketing (BTEC)
  • Outdoor Adventure (BTEC)
  • Sport (BTEC)

We also encourage students to broaden their skills and knowledge beyond the traditional curriculum, preparing them for the challenges of university and the workplace by offering a range of activities including:

  • The Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) – A freestanding, independent research qualification that contributes to UCAS points.
  • International English Language Testing System (IELTS) lessons for international students.
  • A pastoral programme – covering physical, emotional and social well-being, financial management, interview and presentation skills, preparation for life after school.
  • Leadership opportunities – student mentors and prefects, Duke of Edinburgh Awards scheme, Model United Nations.
  • Co-curricular opportunities- a range of sports played at a competitive or recreational level, performing arts and a variety of clubs ranging from ceramics to debating. 

A Level

Art and Design

A Level

Art and Design

Creativity is becoming one of the most important skills in today’s society. The future is constantly changing to adapt to developing technology and a pupil’s ability to think creatively and innovatively is increasingly important.

A University course in a creative subject will require the creation of a portfolio. Taking 1 or more of our A Level subjects will prepare them for this stage, and we will support them with this.

Ensuring each individual has a range of skills and the ability to experiment with ideas and techniques is very important to us.

Why take A Levels in Art and Design?

Course Overview PDF

The Drama and Art building at Queen’s College offers some of the best facilities in the South West. The spacious, superbly lit studios offer specialist teaching facilities for fine art, printmaking, photography, textiles and ceramics. There are also well-equipped rooms for GCSE pupils whilst each A Level pupil has their own exhibition and working space.

Head of Department, Rebecca Cade, Teachers of Art, Laura Burgoyne and Sandra Spall, and the Art Technician, Alison Luisi, have specialisms in textiles, painting, printing, ceramics and mixed media, and are all practising artists.

Each member of staff is extremely experienced and enthusiastic, encouraging the pupils to be innovative, creative and experimental in a wide range of media. Termly story-boards for each year group are created by every member of staff with visual representation, creative ideas and material suggestions so that every pupil is clear as to what they will achieve within set time frames.

The pupils’ artwork is displayed all around the campus, and if you visit Queen’s College you will see many examples of stunning and adventurous projects and exhibitions. There are excursions to art galleries such as the Saatchi Gallery, Royal Academy, Tate Modern and Tate Britain. We have also visited sculpture parks and National Trust properties as well as residential trips to St Ives, Venice, New York, Barcelona and Paris, which helped inspire the pupils in their work. In addition, we arrange workshops with practising artists, working in a variety of disciplines to help inspire the pupils to explore new techniques.

There is also an annual exhibition, featuring work from senior year groups held during the Summer Term, however visitors to the Art department coming at any time of year are extremely welcome and will see a vast array of creative work displayed in a variety of mediums.

Topic list / key areas of study: 

Our topic lists change every year; this enables us to keep our ideas fresh and to keep us up to date with what is going on in the world around us.

Assessment: 

Exam board: EDEXCEL

Course outline:

60% coursework

40% Exam

The exam is a practical 15 hour timed test.

 

 

 

A Level

Biology

A Level

Biology

Biology A-Level will give you the skills to make connections and associations with all living things around you. Biology literally means the study of life and if that’s not important, what is?

Why take Biology A Level?

Course Overview PDF

Being such a broad topic, you’re bound to find a specific area of interest, plus it opens the door to a fantastic range of interesting careers.

Salters-Nuffield Advanced Biology (SNAB) looks at Biology through up-to-date real-life contexts and makes innovative use of ICT. We use traditional teaching methods, practicals and the resources and teaching animations from the SNAB online website to cover the course content in an exciting and novel way.

The SNAB course uses real-life scenarios as a context for each chapter. This enables pupils to see the importance of each topic to everyday life as well as to understand how the subject matter inter-relates. These topics include the ever increasing problem of cardiovascular disease, the ethics behind genetic testing and why extinction is on the rise.

Course information:

First year:

  • Lifestyle and health
  • Genes and proteins
  • DNA and development
  • Biodiversity and natural resources

Second year:

  • Ecology, conservation and evolution
  • Infection, immunity and forensics
  • Physiology and energy
  • Nervous and hormonal control, learning and the brain

Full use is made of the excellent Biology facilities with a strong emphasis placed on practical work.  We also value learning outside of the classroom, with trips to the Natural History museum to see classification in action, a lab day on forensic science with At-Bristol and a neuroscience and Psychology day with a real brain dissection.

Practicals:

Biology, like all sciences, is a practical subject. Throughout the course you will carry out practical activities including:

  • Using microscopes to see cell division
  • Dissection of animal and plant systems
  • Aseptic technique to study microbial growth
  • Investigating activity within cells
  • Investigating animal behaviours
  • Investigating distributions of species in the environment

These practicals will give you the skills and confidence needed to investigate the way living things behave and work. It will also ensure that if you choose to study a Biology-based subject at university, you’ll have the practical skills needed to carry out successful experiments in your degree.

Assessment:

There are three 2 hr exams all taken at the end of year 13. The exams cover content from year 12 and 13 and include a comprehension based element using a pre-release article on a biological concept.

Students must also complete a number of core practicals where they will be assessed on collecting evidence, making conclusions and technique and skill whilst conducting the experiments. The practical component is marked as a pass or fail.

Careers progression:

The range of possible careers that use biology are far too numerous to list. However they include:

Medicine, nursing, physiotherapy, biotechnologist, marine biologist, microbiologist, conservation officer, pharmacologist, research scientist, teacher, technician, researcher, pathologist, forensic scientist, dentist, dental hygienist, genetic counsellor, neuroscientist, orthotist, optician, Vet, Veterinary nurse, Zoologist, environmental health officer, Ecologist, pharmacist, botanist and science journalist.

Useful Links:

www.qualifications.pearson.com/en/qualifications/edexcel-a-levels/biology-a-2015.html

www.hoddereducation.co.uk/biologicalsciencesreview

www.nature.com

Team Bio:

Lisa Henden – Head of Biology and Head of Science. I graduated in 1995 from Bath University with a BSc in Biology. I have taught A’ level and GCSE students at Queen’s for 25 years and have been a day house and a boarding house parent. My favourite subject areas are anatomy and physiology, cell biochemistry and immunity.

Claire Harrison – I studied zoology at Aberystwyth University graduating in 2001 before completing my PGCE at UEA in Science.I have worked at Queen’s for 19 years in the Biology dept teaching throughout the age ranges. I am Head of PSHME and currently Year lead for year 11. My favourite topics to teach include genetics and the nervous system.

Jon Shepherd – Graduated from Loughborough University in 1990 after which spent a couple of years teaching in a Japanese High School. Joined Queen’s in September 2007 having previously taught in schools in Somerset and Hampshire since 1992. Having stepped down from the Houseparent role in School House in 2020, I now focus on my academic science teaching and remain involved in coaching rugby and cricket teams.

Andrew Williams – I graduated with a BSc in Environmental Sciences from the University of Southampton and have thirty years of experience teaching Science and Biology in a range of schools. I am a very keen photographer and I am passionate about natural history and learning languages.

 

A Level

Business

A Level

Business

The A Level in Business Studies is a great qualification for students interested in studying Business nationally and internationally. Taught by specialist teachers using a wide range of teaching methods and interactive resources including trips, competitions and speakers.

Housed in the historic core of Queen’s College, the department, known as ‘The Covers,’ comprises purpose-designed classrooms fully equipped with the latest technology.

Why take Business A Level: 

Course Overview PDF

Understanding business is fundamental to most careers these days and many of our students who undertake the A Level course go on to business courses at Higher Education.

Although you will consider a variety of business questions supported by theory, the emphasis is on your ability to analyse business problems and evaluate your own solutions to these problems.

You are required to take an interest in current business affairs through the watching of relevant television programmes, reading quality newspapers and magazines and using the internet.

Course information: 

In Year 12, you study Themes 1 and 2 and, in Year 13, Themes 3 and 4

Theme 1: Marketing and People

Students will develop an understanding of:

  • meeting customer needs
  • the market
  • marketing mix and strategy
  • managing people
  • entrepreneurs and leaders

Theme 2: Managing Business Activities

Students will develop an understanding of:

  • raising finance
  • financial planning
  • managing finance
  • resource management
  • external influences

Theme 3 Business Decisions and Strategies

This theme develops the concepts introduced in Theme 2. Students will develop an understanding of:

  • business objectives and strategy
  • business growth
  • decision-making techniques
  • influences on business decisions
  • assessing competitiveness
  • managing change

Theme 4 Global Business

This theme develops the concepts introduced in Theme 1. Students will develop an understanding of:

  • globalisation
  • global markets and business
  • expansion
  • global marketing
  • global industries and companies

(multinational corporations).

How will I be taught?

Students are taught by subject specialists, including the Head of Department.

We use a wide range of approaches including:

  • Case studies
  • TV/Video clips
  • Examination skill development through essay writing and practice exam questions
  • Visits, conferences and outside speakers
  • Extensive resources and support materials on our own Google Classroom
  • Reading study texts and note-taking
  • Seminar style group work
  • Interactive quizzes and competitions using tools such as Kahoot!

Assessment: 

There are three examination papers at the end of the course, each paper is two hours long.

Paper 1: Short-answer, data response and essay questions from Themes 1 and 4

Paper 2: Short-answer, data response and essay questions from Themes 2 and 3

Paper 3: The questions in the exam – data response and essay questions – cover concepts and theory from the whole course and students study a pre-release context prior to the examination.

Careers Progression: 

Careers for Business Studies graduates are far reaching and include progression into jobs in accountancy, human resources, personnel and management as well as banking. 67% of business graduates find a job within six months of leaving university – ahead of other general subjects.

 

 

A Level

Chemistry

A Level

Chemistry

Chemistry at Queen’s is a vibrant mix of ‘hands on’ experiments, state-of-the-art technology and experienced and enthusiastic teaching. All the dedicated staff in the department work hard to make Chemistry exciting and rewarding by using a great variety of stimulating activities in teaching and learning.

Why take Chemistry?

Course Overview PDF

As a Chemistry student, you will undertake significant experimental work. Test tubes and Bunsen burners, colours, smells, bangs and bubbles are part of Chemistry as much now as ever. These activities are enhanced by regular use of specialist computer software, both in the lab and in the computer room, data-logging equipment, LCD projectors, an interactive whiteboard, and molecular models.

The Chemistry Department is housed on the ground floor of the Callard Laboratories. There are three spacious and well-equipped ‘state-of-the-art’ teaching labs, all connected to a central preparation room. Also on the ground floor alongside the laboratories is a computer room linked to the school network with 24 workstations.

Many pupils find Chemistry fascinating beyond the lessons themselves and we aim to stretch our students beyond the curriculum. As a Year 12 student, you can take part in the Chemistry Olympiad, the Cambridge Chemistry Challenge, master-classes and make aspirin. You will not be bound to the labs but take trips to Bristol University and attend Sixth Form lecture days.

Course information: 

You will follow the AQA Chemistry course and do a lot of experimental work that gets you thinking. The emphasis is on being able to handle concepts and problem solving rather than remembering lots of facts. Although you will not need to be A Level Mathematicians to cope, you will need to be able to think logically and carefully. Some Chemists are surprised by the amount of calculations you have to do which typically relate to practical contexts and involve rearranging equations, using ratios and keeping track of units and significant figures.

The teaching style promotes independent learning and the development of study skills which provides an excellent platform from which to go on to University.

Assessment: 

Three papers taken in the final terms of year 13 each lasting for 2 hours.

Career Progression: 

Each year several of the A grade Chemists gain places at Oxbridge and many read Medicine or Veterinary Science there and elsewhere. Degree courses chosen can be as diverse as Law, Languages and Archaeology as well as those that expect A grade Chemistry such as Medicine, Chemical Engineering or Biochemistry; a comprehensive careers support programme is in place for students wishing to move into medical fields.

Team Bio: 

Department member, Tim Jolliff, is the author of the Royal Society of Chemistry book Chemistry for the Gifted and Talented written when he was the RSC School Teacher Fellow.

 

 

A Level

Computer Science

A Level

Computer Science

COMPUTER SCIENCE A Level 

ICT – both desktop and mobile – is becoming totally integrated within education at Queen’s College and is embedded across all subjects in the curriculum. Every department has integrated computer modules and apps into their schemes of work and the School’s wireless network is extensive. There are 330 connected computers on site giving instant access to the Internet, e-mail and other resources. The majority of the computers are Intel based PCs and laptops however pupils are increasingly using mobile devices and tablets such as iPads and Netbooks and even mobile phone technology both in and out of the classroom.

Why study Computer Science? 

Course Overview PDF

This specification has been designed for students who wish to go on to higher education courses or employment where knowledge of Computing would be beneficial. 

This course, with its emphasis on abstract thinking, general problem solving, algorithmic and mathematical reasoning, scientific and engineering-based thinking, is a good foundation for further study.

Students following this specification do not need to have any prior knowledge of Computing or ICT, but due to the high mathematical content of this course a high pass grade in GCSE mathematics is a prerequisite. There is a clear distinction between this specification and the GCE ICT and GCE Applied ICT specifications. It has been written to avoid any overlap of subject content.

The course is not about learning to use tools or just training in a programming language. Instead the emphasis is on computational thinking. Computational thinking is a kind of reasoning used by both humans and machines. Thinking computationally is an important life skill. Thinking computationally means using abstraction and decomposition. The study of computation is about what can be computed and how to compute it. Computer Science involves questions that have the potential to change how we view the world.

Computing / Computer Science is about designing new algorithms to solve new problems. In this sense Computer Science is no more about computers than astronomy is about telescopes. Many great challenges lie in the future for Computer Scientists to solve.

Course Information: 

Year 1

  • Fundamentals of programming, data structures, data representation and computer organisation
  • Theory of computation and systematic approach to problem solving
  • Fundamentals of communication and networking

Year 2

In addition to year 1 subjects you will also study:

  • Fundamentals of databases and functional programming
  • Computing practical project

Assessment: 

Paper 1

What’s assessed: this paper tests a student’s ability to program, as well as their theoretical knowledge of Computer Science.

Assessed

  • On-screen exam: 2 hours 30 minutes
  • 40% of A-level
Questions

Students answer a series of short questions and write/adapt/extend programs in an Electronic Answer Document provided by the exam board.

The exam board release the Preliminary Material, a Skeleton Program and, where appropriate, test data, for use in the exam.

 Paper 2

What’s assessed: this paper tests a student’s ability to answer questions from the following subject content

  • Fundamentals of data representation
  • Fundamentals of computer systems
  • Fundamentals of computer organisation and architecture
  • Consequences of uses of computing
  • Fundamentals of communication and networking
  • Fundamentals of databases
  • Big Data
  • Fundamentals of functional programming
  • Systematic approach to problem solving.
Assessed

  • Written exam: 2 hours 30 minutes
  • 40% of A-level
Questions

Compulsory short-answer and extended-answer questions.

Non exam assessment

What’s assessed: the non-exam assessment assesses a student’s ability to use the knowledge and skills gained through the course to solve or investigate a practical problem. Students will be expected to follow a systematic approach to problem solving, as shown in section 22 above.
Assessed

  • 75 marks
  • 20% of A-level

Career Progression: 

You can progress to higher education to study at Degree level. An A-level in computer science will help you access university to study for a BSc in Computer Science or a range of related or analytical subjects from Application, Cyber security, Data, Forensic computer analysts to Game designer. You can alternatively progress directly into employment;

 

 

 

 

A Level

Design Technology

A Level

Design Technology

The course intends to reflect the demands of a truly modern and evolving society and enable students to apply themselves and give them the skills to succeed in their chosen pathway.

Equipping students with design skills for the future – Students will be able to recognise design needs and develop an understanding of how current global issues, including integrating technology, impacts on today’s world.

Encourages creativity and innovation – at A level students will have the confidence to innovate and produce creative design solutions as they develop their own design brief with a client/end user.

Content and assessment overview:

Course Overview PDF

The Pearson Edexcel Level 3 Advanced GCE in Design and Technology (Product Design) consists of one externally-examined paper and one non-examined assessment component. Students must complete all assessments in May/June in any single year.

Component 1: Principles of Design and Technology

Written examination: 2 hours 30 minutes

50% of the qualification

120 marks

Content overview

Topic 1: Materials

Topic 2: Performance characteristics of materials

Topic 3: Processes and techniques

Topic 4: Digital technologies

Topic 5: Factors influencing the development of products

Topic 6: Effects of technological developments

Topic 7: Potential hazards and risk assessment

Topic 8: Features of manufacturing industries

Topic 9: Designing for maintenance and the cleaner environment

Topic 10: Current legislation

Topic 11: Information handling, Modelling and forward planning

Topic 12: Further processes and techniques

Component 2: Independent Design and Make Project

Non-examined assessment

50% of the qualification

120 marks

Content overview:

  • Students individually and/or in consultation with a client identify a problem and design context.
  • Students will develops a range of potential solutions which include the use of computer aided design and evidence of modelling.
  • Students will be expected to make decisions about the designing and development of the prototype in conjunction with the opinions of the user group or client.
  • Students will realise one potential solution through practical making activities with evidence of project management and plan for production.
  • Students will incorporate issues related to sustainability and the impact their prototype may have on the environment.
  • Students are expected to analyse and evaluate design decisions and outcomes for prototypes/products made by themselves and others.
  • Students are expected to analyse and evaluate of wider issues in design technology, including social, moral, ethical and environmental impacts.

 

Useful Links –

Career Pathways Posters

What is DT and why study it?

Why Choose DT?

Where will your career path take you?

What will you be doing in D&T?

Transferable Skills Poster

 

A Level

Drama & Theatre

A Level

Drama & Theatre

A Level – DRAMA AND THEATRE

Drama and the Performing Arts develops vital skills in communication, builds self- confidence, aids presentation skills (vital in later life), enables pupils to work as a team, have pride in performance and perhaps most importantly has enabled pupils to have tremendous fun and enjoy working together to create something magical.

Course information: 

The EDUQAS A Level in Drama and Theatre is an exciting and inspiring course which prepares learners for further study in Higher Education. This highly practical specification provides learners with the opportunity to work as either performers and/or designers on three different performances. In Unit 1 learners reinterpret a text to create a piece of theatre which is a combination of the selected text and original ideas.

In Unit 3 learners engage with a stimulus to create two pieces of theatre of different styles; one an interpretation of a text of their own choice and the other a devised piece. Both Units 1 and 3 are designed to encourage learners to make connections between dramatic theory and their own practice. While preparing their practical work, learners will explore the work of two theatre practitioners (individuals or companies) of their own choice and then apply their research to their performances or designs.

In Units 2 and 4, learners explore three complete performance texts. Learners are also required to watch at least two live theatre productions and learn about the processes and practices involved in interpreting and performing theatre.

Assessment: 

Practical 60% – comprised of two practical assessments both devised and scripted

Written Exam 40% – containing three sections on three different set texts studied throughout the two year course.

Why study Drama A Level? 

Course Overview PDF

Students choosing to study drama will develop their verbal, non verbal, individual and group communication skills, skills they will use throughout their lives. Whilst developing their artistic and creative abilities students gain a better understanding of themselves and the world around them. Through an exploration of drama contexts relating to identity, societies, cultures, ideologies, gender, time and change, students are able to become more critically reflective members of society and are encouraged to consider how they can use theatre as a means of change. 

In Drama students are able to explore intellectual, social, physical, emotional and moral domains through learning which involves thought, feeling and action. Studying drama fosters self discipline, confidence and team work and develops skills in interpreting, researching, negotiating, problem solving and decision making. 

We are tremendously fortunate to have some of the best facilities in the country for Performing Arts and the College is well known for its specialism in the area. The Queen’s Hall, a fully equipped 570-seat theatre complete with state-of-the-art lighting and sound systems, is used for all major productions as well for rehearsals and practices. 

The Wyvern Hall with wooden floors, mirrored wall and retractable seating for 120, is an ideal performance area especially for Dance, although it also serves as an additional performance area for Music and Drama performances throughout the year.

There is also a purpose-built, blacked-out drama studio with retractable seating for 75 used for Drama lessons, theatre in the round and more intimate productions.

Each year we put on some major productions in the Queen’s Hall. These productions comprise of plays, musicals and dance shows. Recent productions have included, Made in Dagenham, Sister Act and Daisy Pulls it Off as well as a play commemorating the First World War, For Queen’s and Country, written by former Head of Performing Arts, Mr Steve Eaton Evans, which was based on the life of a former student.

Career Progression:

Studying Drama provides an excellent foundation for further study of the performing arts, acting, stage management, media studies, arts administration, teaching, journalism, public relations, law etc. Drama provides students with a platform for their own ideas and thoughts about society and encourages an active interaction with all forms of cultural activity. Any career that involves social interaction and/or public presentation will be improved through the study of Drama. 

The Team:

In addition to our outstanding facilities, the Performing Arts staff are all professionals who have worked in the industry themselves and are talented performers in their own right. Head of Department Ella Ridley studied an Acting degree herself and has toured with productions locally, nationally and in Europe. Before joining us at Queen’s, she led an educational touring theatre company around the UK and Ireland as an actress and workshop leader. It was here she discovered her passion for education in the performing arts.

 

EAL (KS5)

EAL (KS5)

International English Language Testing System (IELTS)

On entry into Year 12, pupils’ level of English will be assessed on arrival to plan the appropriate level of support suitable to their needs. Most EAL students attend a course to prepare them for the IELTS exam which is world-recognised and a requirement for study at UK universities as well as English-speaking universities overseas such as in The USA, Canada or Australia.

We are pleased to be able to offer this examination on the school site once per term; with students having the option to register for an exam at a time when they feel fully prepared, and without the need to travel to another test centre.

Course information:

The IELTS (International English Language Testing System) exam has four parts – listening, reading, writing and speaking and assesses students’ ability to use English in real-life and academic situations.

There are four parts to the listening section where students will hear a variety of recorded texts, including monologues and dialogues.

The reading section tests a range of reading skills with passages from newspapers, academic journals, magazines and textbooks.

Writing consists of two tasks.  In task 1 students must describe data presented in a graph or diagram.  Task 2 requires students to discuss a current issue; presenting and justifying an opinion or assessing and analysing a development or problem.

An interview between student and examiner forms the basis of the speaking assessment. Students are then given a topic and prepare a two-minute talk from which follow-up questions are asked.

Assessment: 

There is no pass or fail in IELTS; candidates are instead graded using scores from 1-9 for each component of the exam (each component is weighted at 25%) and are then given an overall average score.  A student’s score is valid for two years.

Access to university:

IELTS requirements for university access vary depending on institution and course, but at Queen’s College we always aim for our students to leave with at least a 6.5 in IELTS in order to provide them with as many opportunities and options for Higher Education or employment as possible. 

Why study IELTS at Queen’s College?

  • On-site official IELTS examinations running 3 times a year
  • Small groups of learners (15 students maximum)
  • 7 hours of IELTS instruction per fortnight
  • Specialised IELTS speaking lessons in groups of no more than 4, once per week
  • Use of the most up-to-date textbooks and test preparation materials
  • Personalised use of the Road to IELTS software with each student receiving their own account
  • Highly trained and experienced teachers including previous IELTS examiners
  • EAL teachers who work closely with the Sixth Form team in order to ensure that students gain access to their chosen university courses through UCAS or overseas applications

Useful Links:

www.ielts.org

www.takeielts.britishcouncil.org

www.english-exam.org/IELTS

Team Bio:

Head of EAL:  Miss Helen Goodall.  Miss Goodall has over 15 years of experience teaching EAL and has worked in the UK and overseas including China and Indonesia.  She completed her degree and PGCE at Cardiff University and has worked at Queen’s College since 2013.

EAL Teachers:  Mrs Karen Williams  & Mr Sam Tarr

Mr Tarr has had extensive experience in education for over 15 years, working in Italy and China. He graduated with an MA in Applied Linguistics from the University of Portsmouth in 2011 and joined the staff at Queen’s College in February 2020 where he also undertakes boarding house duties in School House. An Old Queenian, Mr Tarr was a pupil here from 1989 to 1995. 

EAL Teacher: Mrs Karen Williams 

Mrs Williams has ten years of experience teaching EAL to students of all ages and abilities. She joined Queen’s College in 2014. Prior to this she spent two years in the north of Spain, teaching English to teenagers and adults.

She completed her degree in History and Religious Studies at Lancaster University.

Before life as an EAL Teacher she lived and worked in London for a number of years where she tried her hand at freelance travel / lifestyle writing, alongside various roles in the charity sector.

In her spare time she enjoys travelling, baking, swimming, reading and, more recently, being a mum.

A Level

Economics

A Level

Economics

Economics A Level: 

Economics is about choice and the impact of our choices on each other. It relates to every aspect of our lives, from the decisions we make as individuals or families to the structures created by governments and firms. An economic way of thinking can help you make better choices.

Why study A  Level Economics? 

Course Overview PDF

Economics A Level is the right subject for you if you enjoy: debating economic issues such as inequality, immigration and how we should pay for healthcare using and interpreting data to analyse economic problems discussing alternative courses of action keeping up to date with national and international trends.

“The whole point of Economics is to solve people’s problems (and not just money problems).  It is about power and information, truth and credibility.  It will help in finding love as much as help in getting a job”.  

Tim Harford – The Undercover Economist (Financial Times).

“Study economics and you’ll soon be able to impress your friends – and your parents’ friends – by knowing what phrases such as ‘the balance of payments’ and ‘budget deficit’ mean. However, economics is about so much more than high finance – it touches every aspect of our lives. Essentially, it is about how you, your family, the firm where you work on a Saturday and your Government choose to use the resources available (time, money, skills, buildings or land, for example) to maximum effect. Look at how and why these decisions are made and you’ll soon have a much greater understanding of the way the world works. With an economics qualification, you’ll be a good catch in business, banking and accountancy, as well as politics, journalism and the charity sector. It is a great subject for those with questioning minds, curious about what goes on around them. And what’s more, it’s fun!”

Lucy Rock, News Editor, The Observer

 “Economics is fascinating to study because it is so applicable to everyday life. Why is the economy taking so long to recover from the financial crisis? Will the government be able to repay its mountain of debt? There are very few subjects that you can study during the day and see the relevance of what you’ve learned on the news at night.”

Karen Ward Senior Global Economist, HSBC

 

Course information: Pearson Edexcel A Level in Economics

The subject has been grouped into four broad areas of study. In Theme 1 and Theme 2 students will be introduced to the nature of economics, how markets work and why they fail. Students will also consider the role of government and the UK economy. In Theme 3 and Theme 4 you will explore how businesses grow and compete, the labour market and how the government intervenes to make markets work better.

Students’ will also explore international trade, inequality within and between countries, emerging and developing economies, and the public finances. Additionally they will also have an opportunity to consider the role and impact of the financial sector.

Year 12 Topics

Theme 1 – Introduction to Markets and Market Failure

This theme focuses on microeconomic concepts.

 Students will develop an understanding of:

  • nature of economics including an introduction to behavioural economics
  • how markets work
  • market failure
  • government intervention.

Theme 2 – The UK Economy performance and policies

This theme focuses on macroeconomic concepts. Students will develop anunderstanding of:

  • measures of economic performance
  • aggregate demand
  • aggregate supply
  • national income
  • economic growth
  • macro economic objectives and policy.

Year 13 Topics

Theme 3 – Business Behaviour and the Labour Market

This theme develops the microeconomic concepts introduced in Theme 1 andfocuses on business economics.

Students will develop an understanding of:

  • business growth
  • business objectives
  • revenues, costs and profits
  • market structures
  • labour market
  • government intervention.

Theme 4 – A Global Perspective

This theme develops the macroeconomic concepts introduced in Theme 2 and applies these concepts in a global context. Students will develop an understanding of:

  • international economics
  • poverty and inequality
  • emerging and developing economies
  • the financial sector
  • role of the state in the macro economy.

Assessment:

There are three examination papers at the end of the course, each paper is two hours long.

Paper 1 Short-answer, data response and essay questions on markets and business behaviour – this is the content you study in Theme 1 and Theme 3.

Paper 2 Short-answer, data response and essay questions on the national and global economy – this is the content you study in Theme 2 and Theme 4.

Paper 3 The questions in the exam – data response and essay questions – cover concepts and theory from the whole course.

How will I be taught?

Students are taught by subject specialists and the Head of Department is an examiner for the A level We use a wide range of approaches including:

Case studies

TV/Video clips

Examination skill development through essay writing and practice exam questions

Visits, conferences and outside speakers

Extensive resources and support materials on our own Google Classroom

Reading study texts and note-taking

Seminar style group work

Interactive quizzes and competitions using tools such as Kahoot!.

Careers Progression: 

 

Useful Links: Team Bio:

 

A Level

English Literature

A Level

English Literature

English Literature A Level is taught by a pair of highly experienced, enthusiastic individuals who share a common love of written and spoken English. We draw on a range of specialist interests and knowledge including drama, Shakespeare, contemporary prose, Renaissance and Romantic poetry and Gothic fiction within the department.

Why study English Literature?

Course Overview PDF

There are many skills that you will learn whilst studying English Literature at A Level including accurate written English, articulate oral presentation, critical thinking skills and a thorough understanding of our socio-political context. By the end of the course, as a student of English Literature you will be a well-informed, critical thinker and writer who has a more mature appreciation of humanity and culture.

Lively and challenging teaching methods and imaginative task-setting means that you will be fully engaged and inspired with lots of opportunities to go beyond the curriculum. Many English Literature students choose to continue the subject at university.

English is taught in a suite of classrooms with a dedicated Sixth Form English Literature library attached. It contains an extensive range of prose, poetry and drama including classic fiction and contemporary award-winning texts, plus critical texts to widen your understanding of reception to literary texts; wider reading and a love of fiction is encouraged. Many theatre trips are run, including most recently Ian McKellen’s ‘Hamlet’ in Windsor. You will have the opportunity to enter into national essay writing and poetry competitions and participate in our very strong debating society, for which Queen’s has an outstanding reputation.

Course information:

At Queen’s we have chosen to teach the OCR A Level, believing that it is structured to best support students through final exams, whilst also offering the broadest range of choices of Literature. All A Level syllabi include Shakespeare (the greatest writer of them all) and we opt for ‘Hamlet’; it builds beautifully on the exploration of the human psyche seen in ‘Macbeth’. A study of texts on a chosen context is a key part of the course, and we have opted for the Gothic tradition. Coursework covers a poet, a play and a novel and all are modern texts; currently, we study Lucy Prebble’s ‘Enron’, followed by a study of war poets in tandem with Sebastian Faulks’ ‘Birdsong’. As with GCSE, we believe that flair in teaching comes from a love of the Literature itself, and we are best equipped to bring that Literature to life when teaching what we most enjoy.

Level 3

Food Science & Nutrition

Level 3

Food Science & Nutrition

FOOD SCIENCE AND NUTRITION

Level 3 Food Science and Nutrition –  Applied Diploma

The WJEC Level 3 Food Science and Nutrition diploma is an academic, creative and innovative course that encourages students to take a broad view of food science and nutrition. The subject is accepted by universities and the grades awarded carry the same points as traditional A level subjects, for example, a D* for the diploma, carries the same UCAS points as the A* at A level.

Why study Food Science and Nutrition? 

Course Overview PDF

Students will have the opportunity to learn through the acquisition of knowledge about the relationship between the human body and food as well as practical cooking and preparing food. The qualification has been designed around the concept of a ‘plan, do, review’ approach to learning. 

The course includes a high practical input; we cook every week to develop cookery skills.  The Year 12’s include these new skills in their Unit 1 tasks. As well as cookery skills, students will be required to develop and enhance their ICT skills throughout the course.

Year 12 students gain the level 2 qualifications in Food Hygiene in preparation for the unit 1 external exam. It is a useful addition to their CV and may help to gain part time employment.

Year 13 complete unit 4 coursework where students carry out and present a research project on a current issue of their interest related to food science and nutrition.

Pupils have gained places at a variety of excellent universities to read courses such as; Product Development, Sports Nutrition, Nutrition and Food Science, Dietetics, Marketing and Catering courses. 

Course Content: 

Unit 1: Meeting Nutritional Needs of Specific Groups. (Mandatory – Exam and coursework)

The unit focuses on the understanding of the science of food safety, nutrition and nutritional needs in a wide range of contexts, and through on-going practical work, to gain practical skills to produce quality food items to meet the needs of individuals.

Unit 2: Ensuring Food is Safe to Eat (Mandatory – Case study exam)

The unit focuses on an understanding of hazards and risks in relation to the storage, preparation and cooking of food in different environments and the control measures to minimise these risks.

Unit 3: Experimenting to Solve Food Production Problems (Optional – coursework project)

The unit involves the study of the properties of food in order to carry out experiments to solve food production problems.

or

Unit 4: Current Issues in Food Science and Nutrition (Optional – coursework project)

This unit develops skills in planning, carrying out and presenting a research project on current issues related to food science and nutrition. This could be from the perspective of a consumer, food manufacturer, caterer or policy-maker.

Assessment: 

The course is assessed through a combination of written examinations, projects and case studies to cater for different learning styles.  The grading is reported on a four point scale: Distinction*, Distinction Merit, Pass.

Careers Progression:

Pupils have gained places at a variety of excellent universities to read courses such as; Product Development, Sports Nutrition, Nutrition and Food Science, Dietetics, Marketing and Catering courses. Careers include dietician, nutritionist, food scientist, food technologist, product manager, and sales and marketing. Further studies could include, degrees in Food Innovation and Nutrition, Human Nutrition, Public Health Nutrition, Biotechnology, Environmental Health, International Hospitality, Tourism Management, Sport and Exercise Science, Food Science and Technology, Business and Healthcare Management. 

Useful Links: 

https://www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/food/gcse/food-preparation-and-nutrition-8585

https://www.wjec.co.uk/qualifications/food-science-and-nutrition-level-3

http://bit.ly/GCSEFoodPlaylist

Team Bio:

Head of Food and Nutrition, Mr Mann, was named ‘Best Teacher in England’ by the British Nutrition Foundation in their 2020 Education Awards presented by HRH The Princess Royal. Previously, he has won both ‘Devon Teacher of the Year’ and the award for ‘Best School Food Education’ in Devon. Mr Mann has developed resource materials for both primary and secondary schools in the past and written Food and Nutrition teacher training modules for the Department for Education (DfE). He has also been commissioned for a series of educational teaching films for GCSE examining body AQA and presented educational films for GCSE publishers Hodder Education. Mr Mann is also Senior Associate of the country’s largest network of Food Teachers and has been a consultant advisor for the Department for Education (DfE) and two All-Party Parliamentary Groups at Westminster.

A Levels

Languages

A Levels

Languages

FRENCH A Level 

The Modern Languages department aims to develop as fully as possible students’ innate linguistic ability and the teaching is sympathetic, supportive and, as far as possible, tailored to individual needs. A range of techniques and activities are employed to make the learning process as enjoyable and stimulating as possible.

The atmosphere in Sixth Form lessons is relatively relaxed in order to produce a good exchange of ideas between students and teacher. Nevertheless, hard work is needed to achieve a high grade at A and AS level.

Course information: 

Course Overview PDF

The A Level specification requires Year 12 students to study topics such as: the changing role of the family, cyber-society, charity work, French heritage, French music and French cinema. They also study a piece of French literature, such as Albert Camus’ “L’Etranger”.

In their Year 13, students go on to study such topics as: the positive features of a diverse society, the treatment of criminals and the marginalised, politics (elections, entitlement, protest) and issues relating to immigration. Students also make an in-depth study of a French film, such as Louis Malle’s  “Au Revoir Les Enfants”, and undertake an Individual Research Project about a topic of their choosing. 

Assessment: 

Students are assessed across all four skills: Listening, Speaking, Reading and Writing. The Speaking element of the exam is taken in advance of the main examining period. Students will be expected to write in French and English when answering key questions across the other papers. Key skills such as translation to and from French, summarising key information from a listening extract and text, inferring information as well as completing grammatical gap-fill exercises will be examined for the listening and reading exams. Students will be expected to write two essays; one based on the film studied and another based on the literary text studied. 

Why study French? 

There is no doubt that students who visit the countries whose languages they are studying come back motivated and enthusiastic to improve their language skills further. With that in mind, we help students organise work placements in France so that they are able to appreciate the culture, people and language first hand.

Studying a language at A-level gives you the opportunity to practise key skills which can be useful for all careers choices. The ability to understand and communicate in another language is a life-long skill for education, employment and leisure purposes. Through the study of a language, you can discover new cultures and broaden your view of our globalised world. In current climates, employers look favourably on future employees with the ability to speak another language. 

Studying a language at university can involve studying languages solely or more often they can be combined to get joint or multiple Honours degrees. There is a wide range of courses available in universities where you can study a language ab initio in conjunction with another language studied to A-level standard. 

In recent years several students have continued French at university or have started a new language, on its own or in conjunction with subjects such as cinema, music, history, economics, education, management, European Studies, international relations, international politics, journalism or linguistics.

Progression: 

Through the Erasmus Scheme or equivalent, universities are also able to offer undergraduates the opportunity to do part of their degree course abroad – a popular choice for students as it gives them an ability not only to become fluent but also to enjoy the culture of that particular country.

Some key areas of employment after university are: civil service, education, media and journalism, marketing and publishing, transport and logistics and IT and telecommunications. 

Useful Links:

https://www.ucas.com/explore/subjects/languages

Team Bio:  

Mrs Aisling McGreal: Head of Department. She is originally from Dublin and studied languages and linguistics in University College Dublin. Thereafter she lived abroad for a number of years before relocating to the U.K. to complete her teacher training in Bristol. She worked in a number of schools in different roles before moving to Taunton, where she lives with her husband, daughter, dog and cat.

Mrs Kirsten Webber: She was born in Montreal, Canada before moving back to the UK with her parents shortly after her birth. She currently lives in Taunton with her two lively sons. She gained a BSc Hons degree in French and German and lived in France and Germany. Her career started in export sales, before running her own small teaching business following the birth of her first child. This led her to gain a formal teaching qualification. She has taught EAL and languages at Queen’s College. 

 

SPANISH A Level 

The Modern Languages department has enthusiastically embraced the revolution that has taken place in Language learning in recent years.

The department aims to develop as fully as possible students’ innate linguistic ability and the teaching is sympathetic, supportive and, as far as possible, tailored to individual needs. A range of techniques and activities are employed to make the learning process as enjoyable and stimulating as possible.

Course information: 

Course Overview PDF

We study the AQA specifications in Spanish. The atmosphere in Sixth Form lessons is relatively relaxed in order to produce a good exchange of ideas between students and teacher. Nevertheless, hard work is needed to achieve a high grade at A and AS level.

The new A-Level syllabus covers a range of topics in its first year such as: media including television, advertising and communication technology; popular culture – cinema, music, fashion and trends; as well as topics such as family and relationships which includes friendships, marriage and partnerships. Students also study a spanish film, such as    “Volver” by Pedro Almodóvar.

The subject content in Year 13 comprises of the following themes: the multicultural society including immigration, integration and racism; and contemporary social issues such as modern day idols, Spanish regional identity including traditions and customs as well as cultural heritage. Additionally, students also make an in-depth study of a Spanish film, such as Laura Esquivel’s “Como agua para chocolate” and undertake an Individual Research Project about a topic related to a Spanish speaking country or community.

Assessment:

Students are assessed across all four skills: Listening, Speaking, Reading and Writing. The Speaking element of the exam is taken in advance of the main examining period. Students will be expected to write in French and English when answering key questions across the other papers. Key skills such as translation to and from French, summarising key information from a listening extract and text, inferring information as well as completing grammatical gap-fill exercises will be examined for the listening and reading exams. Students will be expected to write two essays; one based on the film studied and another based on the literary text studied. 

Careers Progression: 

In recent years several students have continued Spanish at university or have started a new language, on its own or in conjunction with subjects such as cinema, music, history, economics, education, management, European Studies, international relations, international politics, journalism or linguistics.

Through the Erasmus Scheme, universities are also able to offer undergraduates the opportunity to do part of their degree course abroad – a popular choice for students as it gives them an ability not only to become fluent but also to enjoy the culture of that particular country.

Useful Links 

https://www.ucas.com/explore/subjects/languages

Team Bio

Mr Miguel Prats Balda: Spanish teacher. Originally from Valencia, he moved to Barcelona to complete his degree in Social Work. In 2014 he relocated to the UK to work on a European project for education in the North West. This enthused him to become a teacher and he completed his PGCE in languages in Manchester University. He worked in London prior to relocating to Taunton.

 

A Level

Geography

A Level

Geography

A Level Geography

The aim of the Geography Department is to prepare you to take an active and intelligent interest in the world in which you live. During these times of unprecedented change, geography provides a safe platform to explore global and local issues from climate change and sustainability to the development gap and globalisation. 

The Geography Department is a highly successful department and is staffed by experienced and enthusiastic subject specialists.

Why study Geography?

Course Overview PDF

Geography equips students with the ability to analyse and interpret information and make decisions based on a holistic understanding of concepts, models and theories as well as observations of the world around us.  It is particularly pertinent today as we face the many challenges of climate change, development, globalisation and sustainability.  Knowledge and understanding of these topics is crucial for the decision makers of the future.

Course information: 

At A Level, as a Geographer you will follow the OCR specification, which enables you to develop and extend your study of thematic and place-orientated aspects of the subject. 

In Year 12, you will study Coasts and Earth’s Life Support Systems in Physical Geography.  This includes understanding the carbon and water cycles and our impact upon them.  This is vital information in order to equip pupils with the ability to make informed decisions in relation to climate change.  In Human Geography we consider the concepts of ‘Space’ and ‘Place’ and look at the varying factors that determine how we interact with urban and rural areas.  We will also study human rights and the challenges as well as opportunities of migration.

Year 13 focuses on the more holistic study of food supply in Human Geography and Hazards in Physical Geography.  These topics are assessed through Paper 3 which aims to test pupils’ broader understanding of the subject and the synoptic links between all elements of Geography.  Pupils in Year 13 will also undertake an individual investigation which will involve primary data collection and can be based on any part of the A Level specification.  

A Level study involves a good deal of independent research in applying natural processes and concepts to real world examples.

There is a varied programme of field trips including trips to Exmoor, Dorset, and Northern Ireland.

Assessment: 

Paper 1 Physical Geography:  (Coasts & Earth’s Life Support Systems)

Paper 2 Human Geography: (Space/Place, MIgration & Human Rights)

Paper 3 Geographical Issues: (Food Supply & Hazards)

Non examined assessment: Individual Investigation.

Careers Progression: 

Geography is one of the best subjects for employment and a fast growing subject for a career choice. Students have gone on to study subjects such as Geology, Oceanography, Environment and Development, Environmental Science, Geoscience, journalism and Urban Planning.  There is also a significant increase in students following careers related to the challenges of combating climate change.  These include sustainable energy, geo-engineering, conservation and sustainable low carbon planning.

Useful Links: 

https://www.rgs.org/

https://www.geography.org.uk/

https://www.nationalgeographic.com/

Team Bio: 

There are three members of the Geography Department.  

Mr Neenan (Head of department)

Mrs Neenan

Mrs Shearman

All three teachers are involved in key stage 3 and 4 teaching with Mr Neenan specialising on the physical side of the subject at A Level and Mrs Neenan specialising on the Human topics.  All staff have travelled extensively and have a deep empathy for the great outdoors.  They are champions of sustainability and actively encourage discussions around the issues of climate change and development.

 

A Level

History

A Level

History

History A Level: 

History is a very exciting subject and a popular one. It generates an enthusiastic and enduring interest in the subject and promotes the key objectives of developing your ability to think for yourself and to arrive at logical and reasoned judgements which you will be able to articulate clearly. Many staff in the department are examiners for OCR and have a lot of experience. In preparation for your examinations, you will study specific periods and topics with the emphasis on increasingly independent work and intimate engagement in class will be encouraged.

Course information:

Course Overview PDF

The OCR course is followed which gives a breadth and depth of study. Pupils will study both the 16th and 19th Centuries. In the 16th Century a study of both Britain under the Tudors is examined along with the European study of Spain from 1469 – 1556. Moving forward to the 19th Century pupils will examine the rise of German nationalism, and subsequent unification. A private study essay is also completed as coursework which allows the students a chance to study something of personal interest.

Assessment:

Pupils are assessed at the end of year 13. They will sit three examinations (one for each unit studied) They will all test both their historical knowledge and skills. 

Throughout the course they will also research and produce a single piece of coursework based on a topic of their choice. 

Why study History? 

Visits and extra-curricular activities are an integral part of each syllabus taught and outings are arranged whenever possible. History outings to local sites and the theatre are organised where appropriate as well as to Sixth Form Conferences.

The department also arranges regular lectures for the Historical Association for the students and members of the local community who are interested in historical issues and events. For more details, CLICK HERE.

Career Progression: 

It is usual for there to be at least one Oxbridge candidate who studies History every year and a large proportion of pupils exceed the standard expected of them in public exams.

The Historical Association has written a pamphlet on History as a preparation for a Career which can be downloaded by clicking on this link and students go on to study degree courses including history, management, media studies, international affairs, law and social sciences.

Team Bio: 

Mrs Allan has a degree in History and International Relations and  is the Head of History and has been at Queen’s for over 15 years. She is extremely passionate about History and is keen for all pupils to share her passion.  In her free time she enjoys spending time with her young family and exploring new places. 

Mrs Hockin has a degree in History and International relations and completed her PGCE with Exeter University. Her favourite areas of History are modern eras especially Germany and Russia. In her free time she enjoys surfing and skiing. 

Mr Aldridge teaches A Level History and is also Head of Year 12.

 

BTEC

Marketing

BTEC

Marketing

PEARSON BTEC LEVEL 3 NATIONAL EXTENDED CERTIFICATE IN MARKETING

This exciting qualification is a great entry point for students considering a career in Marketing. The BTEC Extended Certificate has two internally assessed units and one externally examined unit.  You can choose to do the BTEC in addition to an A level in Business Studies or as one of your three post-16 subject choices.

Why study the Level 3 Marketing BTEC? 

Course Overview PDF

The qualification is aimed at learners who are looking to progress to employment in the sector via an apprenticeship and whose aspirations may also be to enter higher education. The qualification is fully mapped to the CIM L3 Foundation Certificate in Professional Marketing. This means that it will be recognised by employers and will support entry into this industry as a marketing executive. When combined with other Level 3 qualifications, this qualification also offers learners the opportunity to progress to a broad range of higher education programmes, including Higher National Diploma and bachelor degrees

Course information: 

The Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate in Marketing is 360 GLH and is equivalent in size to one A Level.

The content of this qualification has been developed in consultation with employers and professional bodies. This ensures that the content is appropriate and consistent with current industry practice to enable learners to enter employment directly. Higher education institutions have been consulted to ensure it allows appropriate progression for those aspiring to go to higher level study.

Learners taking this qualification will study three mandatory units:

  • Careers in Marketing – this is an investigation into careers in marketing and learning suitable skills for recruiting marketing staff
  • Marketing Principles (externally assessed) – in this unit you will learn key marketing principles and take an external exam
  • Customer Communications – this is an investigation into customer communication and you will create a communications plan.  This unit is internally assessed. 

 

A Levels

Mathematics & Further Mathematics

A Levels

Mathematics & Further Mathematics

MATHEMATICS A Level: 

Overview 

The Mathematics staff at Queen’s College are highly experienced and utilise both traditional and modern approaches in their teaching. Whole class teaching, working of exercises, use of personal whiteboards, question and answer sessions and use of various technologies can all be found within lessons. Students are encouraged to problem solve both individually and in groups, developing knowledge previously learnt at GCSE, as well as introducing many completely new and interesting concepts. You have the option to choose whether you would like to study Mathematics A-Level, or the combined Mathematics and Further Mathematics A-Level. If you choose the latter option this will take up two of your option blocks, but typically we cover the content of A-Level Mathematics in Year 12, and A-Level Further Mathematics in Year 13.

Why Study

Course Overview PDF

All areas of the Mathematics and Further Mathematics A-Levels can be used in a broad range of future areas. The study of Pure Mathematics allows greater understanding of the world around us, providing the language needed for many careers as well as allowing you to develop skills to model and understand every day, real world situations. The Mechanical aspects of the course allow you to appreciate fully the forces and concepts around us, whilst the Statistical aspects of the course can help you to model predictions for the future in anything from information about a cohort to the number of checkouts required in a supermarket at peak service time. Mathematics really does set you up for so many different aspects of life, and having a background in Mathematics can help support any future choices for study or careers.  

Course Overview 

We follow the Pearson Edexcel course for A Level, as it provides a rich and exciting array of different topics. These would include algebraic methods, trigonometry, differentiation and integration for Pure Mathematics, mathematical modeling and statistical analysis for Statistics and moments, application of forces, projectiles and kinematics for Mechanics. We also take part in national Mathematics challenges with UKMT and have trips to different Mathematical based lectures.

A-Level Mathematics is fully assessed by three exams at the end of the two year period, all of which allow you to use a calculator. The first two exams focus on Pure Mathematics, whilst the final exam is a mixture of the Statistics and Mechanics.

A-Level Further Mathematics is fully assessed by four exams at the end of the two year period (in addition to the three exams taken for A-Level). Again, these are all with the use of a calculator. You will take two Core Pure Mathematics exams then the choice of Statistics, Mechanics or Decision Mathematics as two of the other three exams. Typically we would complete all three to get the best possible composition for the final grade. 

Progression 

Some of the most interesting and well-paid careers revolve around Mathematics. Careers in finance, medicine, engineering, and business are all open to people with a background in Mathematics, as are careers in technology — Mathematics being at the very core of all new technological developments. It is also worth considering careers where Mathematics isn’t so obviously used, for example consider conservation  where the modelling of species growth and decay is vital, or the necessity to calculate accurately the wind speed and direction as an airline pilot, the opportunities are endless.

A Level

Music

A Level

Music

A Level Music:

Music A Level is an exciting and challenging A Level which not only further develops the student as a musician but develops the critical thinking and discrete skills that universities highly value in their undergraduates.

Students would usually be expected to have completed GCSE Music but this is not an absolute necessity. However due to the performance part of the course, students should be at least Grade 6 in performance standard when they start the course.

Course information and assessment: 

Course Overview PDF

We follow the Edexcel specification for A Level Music. Both the new AS and A2 Music courses feature set works to study as well as performing and composition tasks and have the same division of marks between the sections.

For performing, there are no limits on the instruments or voices and types of repertoire which may be presented in performance, encouraging the study of the widest possible range of music from folk, popular and classical traditions of non-Western origin as well as those of jazz and the Western classical and popular traditions.

Students produce a recital of at least 8 minutes length which accounts for 30% of the total marks for the course. Students also study composition and compositional techniques. They produce an extended composition of at least 4 minutes in length and complete two harmonisation exercises. This accounts for 30 % of the course.

The final exam (and 40% of the course) offers the students the opportunity to demonstrate their knowledge of 18 varied set works which are studied over the two years of the course. As well as applying analysis skills to unknown pieces, this exam also includes melodic and rhythmic completion exercises.

Why study Music? 

With a variety of disciplines developed, tasks covered and a blend of practical and academic work, A Level Music is an excellent companion A level to a wide variety of other subject choices and is a fascinating and stimulating subject to study in the Sixth Form. It develops the key skills of performance, composition and listening which as well as contributing to exam success, are skills that last a lifetime. These are important if thinking about a career in music but are enormously enriching whatever career you have. Recent global events have highlighted the benefits and  joy of having musical skills as well as the incredible wellbeing benefits of it.

In addition, as well as being a specific discipline which enables students to develop their own musicianship, music develops a whole range of transferable skills that are highly valued. These include memory and concentration skills, perseverance, teamwork skills, adaptability and confidence; skills sought after by higher education institutions and employers alike. 

Career Progression: 

Careers leading from A level  Music or a degree in Music into the creative arts are varied and very exciting; these include performing, conducting, composing, music production, music therapy, education, arts administration,  event management and radio, TV and film production. Although A Level Music can lead to a reading Music at university, that is by no means the only path available and music students from Queen’s have gone on to read subjects as varied as Maths, Engineering and Languages. In addition the soft skills developed by musicians helps in just about any career with many of our musicians going on into careers as varied as medicine and accountancy. 

Team Bio: 

Ed Jenkins 

Ed Jenkins studied Music at the University of Exeter, specialising in organ performance. After working at Wells Cathedral School, he trained as a teacher at Bath Spa University College and has since worked in a variety of schools, becoming Director of Music at Wycliffe College in 2008; he moved to Queen’s in 2014. As well as teaching, accompanying and playing at the College, he continues to perform as a soloist and accompanist in the south west and when possible, enjoys his hobbies of cooking, golf and long board surfing. 

Cicely Wills

Cicely Wills studied Music at the University of Nottingham, specialising in opera and politics. After completing a PGCE at the UCL Institute of Education, she taught in London before moving to Queen’s in 2017. As a first study singer, she has sung in numerous choirs including the Nonsuch Singers, and more recently with Stephen Layton. Cicely is also a keen djembe player and has introduced many students to the West African tradition, using a range of authentic instruments. 

 

Click Here to Learn About Co-Curricular Music 

 

BTEC

Outdoor Activities

BTEC

Outdoor Activities

BTEC Foundation Diploma in Sport and Outdoor Activities

The Pearson BTEC Level 3 Foundation Diploma in Sport and Outdoor Activities is a suitable course for post-16 learners looking to progress into higher education when run alongside A levels or other BTECs. 

It is also a suitable course if you’re planning to go directly into employment as an Outdoor Activities Instructor or similar role in the wider leisure industry.

The course is equivalent to 1.5 A-levels, with all grades warranting UCAS points. This will allow Queen’s students to use this course to help them with entry onto a range of university courses, as BTEC nationals level 3 are an alternative to A-levels and carry a similar UCAS points weighting. 

A comparison between the two qualifications is outlined below:

(INSERT GRAPHIC) 

Course information: 

Course Overview PDF

The content of this qualification has been developed in consultation with higher education institutions, employers and professional bodies, most notably the Institute for Outdoor Learning (IOL), in order to confirm that the content is appropriate and consistent with current industry practice and to ensure that the qualification allows progression for those aspiring to higher-level study. 

Students taking this qualification at Queen’s will study six units:

Unit A: Careers in the Sport and Active Leisure Industry

Unit B: Health, Wellbeing and Sport

Unit C4: Personal Skills Development in Outdoor Activities

Unit 24: Health and Safety Factors in Outdoor Learning

Unit 25: Outdoor Activity Provision

Unit 27: Expedition Experience (This will include UK & overseas expeditions)

Assessment: 

Due to the nature of BTECs, students will partake in ongoing assessments throughout the duration of the two year course. This will involve a mixture of written and practical assessments but no formal exams. This makes it a suitable course for students who struggle to show their ability through a formal exam assessment system but would still like to progress into higher education, as it will provide them with essential skills and UCAS points that are required to go to University.

Careers progression: 

This course can either provide entry to university via UCAS points equivalent to 1.5 A Levels or an excellent introduction to the outdoor and leisure employment sectors.  It will provide a range of National governing body (NGB) qualifications which are essential if pupils wish to pursue a career in the outdoors.  This will include qualifications in mountain/rock based activities as well as watersports.  It will also provide opportunities for work experience in a range of outdoor settings as well as experience of the wider leisure industry.

Useful Links

https://www.outdoor-learning.org/

https://www.thebmc.co.uk/

https://www.britishcanoeing.org.uk/

Team Bio 

The outdoor education team at Queen’s delivers one of the most extensive outdoor education school based programmes in the south-west.  The department is staffed by two full time outdoor tutors and a large number of other staff in a supporting role.  Staff are very experienced and have a wide range of higher level national governing body qualifications in a wide range of different outdoor activities from climbing & mountaineering to kayaking and sailing.

Key staff

Head of Outdoor Education – Mark Neenan

Mark has over 20 years’ experience coaching and leading groups in the outdoors. This has included yearly climbing and kayaking expeditions to Europe and further afield, as well as providing a range of exciting and challenging outdoor experiences here in the UK throughout the year. He is qualified as a British Canoe Union Level 4 Coach, MLTB Climbing Instructor and Cycling UK Mountain Biking Leader Trainer, as well as holding a wide range of other NGB outdoor qualifications.

Alex Cruice – Outdoor Education Tutor

Rosie Allport – Outdoor Education Tutor 

Rosie has a first class honours degree in Outdoor Leadership and Management from the University of Derby. She is qualified in a wide range of adventurous activities including climbing, mountain walking, canoeing and kayaking. Rosie had worked at a variety of outdoor activity centres as well as a freelance outdoor instructor delivering bushcraft camps in primary schools and the Duke of Edinburgh award.

 

Rosie enjoys kayaking, climbing, caving, stand-up paddleboarding and skiing both in the UK and abroad. She takes great pleasure in passing on her enthusiasm for the great outdoors, facilitating the personal development of young people, promoting resilience and other life skills and providing the opportunity for them to see the outdoors in a new light.

 

A Level

Photography

A Level

Photography

PHOTOGRAPHY

As a Photography pupil, you will be involved in personal enquiry and expression involving the selection and manipulation of images. You will employ creative approaches which go far beyond mere observation and recording. Digital Photography is taken to another level and experimenting with what you create is essential.

Why take A Level Photography? 

Course Overview PDF

The wide range of applications and relevance to many areas of study make this an excellent course if you either wish to add a creative subject to your Sixth Form curriculum or wish to broaden your art-based studies.

Photography is displayed all around the campus and if you visit Queen’s College you will see many examples of stunning and adventurous projects and exhibits. There are regular excursions to art galleries such as The Saatchi and Tate Modern in London and St Ives, sculpture parks and to the National Trust as well as international art trips to Venice, Barcelona, Paris and New York which help inspire you in your work.

There is also an annual exhibition, featuring work from senior year groups held during the Summer Term however visitors to the Art Department coming at any time of year are extremely welcome and will see a vast array of creative work displayed in a variety of mediums.

Key elements of the course:

During the year, you will generate your own individual portfolios of work, working on both location and studio shots, and complete an externally set assignment near the beginning of the Summer Term.

During the A Level course, you have the opportunity to generate practical work, ideas and research from primary and contextual sources, then to present your outcomes, based on themes developed from personal starting points. During the second year, coursework incorporates two linked elements, each with separate final outcomes – practical work and personal study. The development for both these is demonstrated through supporting studies.

Assessment: 

The externally set assessment is the culmination of the A2 course. It has a broad-based thematic starting point and there is plenty of guidance during the preparatory period.

Photography is displayed all around the campus and if you visit Queen’s College you will see many examples of stunning and adventurous projects and exhibits. There are regular excursions to art galleries such as The Saatchi and Tate Modern in London and St Ives, sculpture parks and to the National Trust as well as international art trips to Venice, Barcelona, Paris and New York which help inspire you in your work.

There is also an annual exhibition, featuring work from senior year groups held during the Summer Term, however visitors to the Art department coming at any time of year are extremely welcome and will see a vast array of creative work displayed in a variety of mediums.

Career progression: 

Many of our pupils have progressed from A Level to study creative subjects at a variety of institutions, including Central Saint Martins, Kingston, Falmouth, Edinburgh and Glasgow. We are incredibly proud of all our pupils and their achievements to date, at Queen’s and beyond.

In recent years Catlin Mole, Georgia Larkin, Olivia McNeilis, Georgia Bird and Vince Chin have all successfully got into Central Saint Martins. Joe Fender studied at the University of Glasgow. Phyllida Reoch has worked with a prestigious Milliner in London who makes hats for the royal family.  Alex Hoskins is a successful Illustrator and Georgia Bird, who studied Art, Textiles and Photography with us at Queen’s, is currently a postgraduate diploma in Directing Commercials with the National Film and Television School.

Team Bio: 

Head of Department, Rebecca Cade, Teachers of Art, Laura Burgoyne and Sandra Spall, and the Art Technician, Alison Luisi, have specialisms in textiles, painting, printing, ceramics and mixed media, and are all practising artists. WE have all taken part and continue to take part in Exhibitions together and/or separately. This enables us to keep our ideas fresh and exciting.

A Level

Physical Education

A Level

Physical Education

To view all Physical Education information

Click Here 

 

A Level

Physics

A Level

Physics

Overview 

The Physics department aims to make Physics an enjoyable subject for all those who study it, incorporating as much practical work at all levels and with as many unusual experiments as possible. Physics is housed in a purpose-built laboratory block with three labs and a preparation room. The department has a very good stock of modern apparatus including an electron diffraction tube, many oscilloscopes including a Digital storage oscilloscope module, radioactivity apparatus, data logging equipment with accurate sensors and both a 90mm refracting telescope and an 6” reflecting telescope.

 

Why Study

Course Overview PDF

Physics is the study of the Universe using the scientific method. This means that all of space, time, energy and matter fall within its scope; from the smallest fundamental particle through the world humans experience to the largest galaxies observed and beyond. 

There are a myriad of excellent reasons for studying Physics. For some it is on the direct pathway for a particular career (more on that later). Others want an understanding of how the World works and how we can create new technologies. 

A Level Physics will give you incredibly strong analytical and research skills and help develop your critical thinking. You will be able to come at problems and solve them in a methodical and logical way. You will be able to investigate theories, devise tests and explore new ideas. Such strong problem-solving skills are highly sought after by employers.

The reason I chose to study A level Physics was that I was interested in the deeper nature of reality and how and why mathematics can be used to describe everything that we experience.

Course Overview 

We study the OCR “Physics A” A level. The subject breakdown is:

Year 12:

  • Newtonian mechanics
  • Material science
  • Electric Circuits
  • Waves
  • Quantum Mechanics

Year 13:

  • Thermal Physics and Ideal Gases
  • Circular and Simple Harmonic motion
  • Gravitational Fields
  • Astronomy and Cosmology
  • Electric and Magnetic Fields
  • Particle and Nuclear  Physics
  • Medical Imaging

 

Progression 

From cancer treatment to tackling climate change, gaming to robotics and artificial intelligence, physics and physicists are on the front line, helping to shape the future. At a time when jobs are changing, physics offers a vast and expanding range of career paths.

And it’s not only science and technology. What many people don’t realise is how valued and respected physics skills and ways of thinking are in other, often well-paid, industries – like finance and law.

Physics A-level has been named as a “facilitating subject” by the Russell Group of universities, which means it can be useful for getting onto a wide range of university courses.

Physics A-level is usually required for degree courses in: engineering (general, aeronautical, civil, electrical, mechanical, sometimes chemical), and, you guessed it, physics…

It is often recommended or useful for: biochemistry, biology, chemistry, medicine, dentistry, nursing and other practice-based medicine courses, architecture, computer science, geography, earth and environmental sciences, maths, materials science, pharmacy, sports science, surveying, psychology.

 

 

 

 

 

A Level

Psychology

A Level

Psychology

If you wish to study Psychology, it is not necessary to have studied the subject before, although an interest in human behaviour and science is advantageous.

During the course you will need to be able to communicate effectively and research information from a variety of sources and will be expected to keep up-to-date with current affairs and relate these to relevant areas of Psychology.

Why study Psychology?

Course Overview PDF

The study of Psychology at A Level will teach you to gain an understanding of psychological theories, research, case studies and methods used to collect data. You will explore topics which reflect current contemporary issues as well as earlier case studies, participate in and conduct psychological investigations, collect data, analyse your own or second hand data and evaluate your findings.

There will also be the opportunity to develop an awareness of the ethical issues in Psychology – particularly in the field of research, and to relate theories to practice and explore self-discovery.

Course information and assessment:

Invariably students in Y12 are new to psychology therefore we offer a clearly structured introduction to the course which includes writing summaries of research, completing worksheets, practising exam questions and developing a comprehensive glossary to enable them to be psychologically literate.

Transferable learning skills such as collaborative group work, peer assessment and academic reading are developed through a variety of classroom and homework based activities which promotes critical thinking skills necessary for detailed analysis and evaluation of research data.

The first half of Y13 builds on the foundation of theory and research techniques learned in Year 12 by evaluating their practical applications in areas such as schizophrenia, addiction and gender.

The latter half of Y13 is based around comparison of the effectiveness of the different perspectives adopted by psychologists in studying human behaviour, including their implications on philosophical debates such as our free will to make choices. The focus is on developing skills in building arguments with knowledge gained over the whole course.

Although there is no coursework component in A level psychology, and no continuous assessment that contributes towards the final grade, students are given the opportunity to recreate key experiments and all students will carry out small scale independent or group research projects.

Career progression: 

It is easier to ask about where psychology will not be relevant!

Medicine and Healthcare – Psychologist, Psychiatrist, Mental Health Nursing

Law – Barrister, Magistrate, Court Usher

Charity and Not for Profit – helpline worker, Policy Advisor, Fundraiser

Recruitment and HR – Recruitment Consultant, HR Officer, Training Manager

Public sector – Member of Parliament, Civil Servant, Social Worker

Advertising and Marketing – Copywriter, Public Relations Officer, Researcher

Useful links:

AQA wbsite:

www.aqa.org.uk/subjects/psychology/as-and-a-level/psychology-7181-7182/subject-content-a-level/introductory-topics-in-psychology

www.psychboost.com

www.psychologyhub.co.uk

www.bps-research-digest.blogspot.com

Team Bio:

Claire Barker is a Chartered Psychologist and an active member of the BPS, currently an elected committee member for DART-P (the Division of Academics, Researchers and Teachers of Psychology). She is a published author, has a Masters in Education and is currently a doctoral candidate at Keele University. Claire has 17 years experience as a teacher of A level psychology and is an examiner for AQA.

 

A Level

Religious Studies

A Level

Religious Studies

A LEVEL Religious Studies: 

Religious Studies at A Level is an exciting opportunity for those who wish to develop their knowledge and understanding of ultimate questions. It gives scope for those who wish to sharpen their own critical approach.

Why study Religious Studies: 

Course Overview PDF

If you are opting for Religious Studies, you should have an enquiring mind and be willing to think, to question and to search. No religious faith is assumed or expected, merely an openness to discover and explore.

The subject is open to those students either following an arts or a science based course of study and may provide useful reflection upon other subject areas.

This specification is designed to:

  • develop a range of transferable skills which can be applied far beyond the study of Religious Studies
  • help students gain a thorough grounding in key philosophical concepts, themes, texts and techniques
  • enable students to develop the ability to reason, form their own judgements, express themselves coherently and contribute to the process of debate
  • show students how to consider philosophical problems through the study of a key text.

As well as learning key subjects the course aims to also teach and educate on life skills. Topics studied give students a greater awareness of current issues and ethical problems in the world today. This critical analysis, debate and the ability to formulate a persuasive argument allows students to develop skills transferable into the world of work. 

Course information: 

Here at Queen’s, we study the OCR A-Level specification and during their course of study the students will study the following:

Component 1: Philosophy of Religion

  • Ancient philosophical influences
  • The nature of the soul, mind and body
  • Arguments about the existence or non-existence of God
  • The nature and impact of religious experience
  • The challenge for religious belief of the problem of evil
  • Ideas about the nature of God
  • Issues in religious language.

Component 2: Religion and Ethics

  • Normative ethical theories
  • The application of ethical theory to two contemporary issues of importance
  • Ethical language and thought
  • Debates surrounding the significant idea of conscience
  • Sexual ethics and the influence on ethical thought of developments in religious beliefs.

Component 3: Developments in Religious Thought From a Christian perspective

  • 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
  • Significant social and historical developments in theology and religious thought
  • Key themes related to the relationship between religion and society.

Assessment: 

The course will be examined by a two-hour exam on each component at the end of Year 13.

Careers progression: 

Choosing Religious studies opens up a variety of career paths. This is due to the skills learnt which are adaptable to many essay writing and critical analysis courses including law, humanities subjects and economics. 

The study of Religious Studies can also be very helpful for those wishing to study medicine or wanting to have a career in the medical sphere. This is due to the medical ethics topics which are studied and so form a good base for this area when covered at degree level. 

Past students have gone on to successfully study PPE, Philosophy, Medicine, Theology, Religious Studies and Applied Ethics. Many go on to Oxbridge or Russell group universities. 

Lead teacher Biography

Mr. Angus Hamilton is Head of Department for Religious Studies and teaches the majority of the GCSE and A level courses.

He is an experienced teacher and has been teaching at Queens for over a decade. The department under him has had outstanding results every year and proves a very popular subject choice at Queens.

Mr. Hamilton is also a qualified GCSE examiner which aids his teaching of examination skills.

When not in the classroom Mr. Hamilton can be found on numerous sports pitches coaching rugby, hockey or cricket. 

 

A Level

Sociology

A Level

Sociology

Sociology is a good choice for anyone interested in people and the way we live.

Why study Sociology?

Course Overview PDF

Sociology offers a distinct and highly illuminating perspective on human behaviour. Learning to be a sociologist means taking a step back from our own personal interpretations of the world, to look at the social influences which shape our life choices – from when, or whether, to have children to why people abide by or challenge laws. Studying sociology also helps you to understand and appreciate cultural differences and similarities, a very useful skill in our increasingly globalised world.

A Level Sociology works well alongside other humanities and social science A Level subjects such as History, Geography and Psychology but also complements the sciences, Business Studies, Economics and art subjects or works within a multi-disciplinary approach to A Level choices.

Course information: 

Students will critically evaluate sociological theories in regard to crime and punishment; the changing nature of family, childhood and demography; religion, secularisation and new religious movements such as cults and the New Age; and theories in regard to the purpose of education and reasons for varied levels of achievement across social groups. All topics are referenced to sociological perspectives, theories, research methods and government social policies.

Assessment: 

The A Level qualification consists of three two-hour papers. All topics are examined through short answer questions, stimulus material questions and essays, requiring knowledge of research methods, sociological theories and perspectives.

Careers Progression: 

As a subject, sociology has universal currency and is well represented in higher education, the majority of universities offer three year degree courses allowing students to gain a BSc or BA in Sociology, often combining it with Criminology, Psychology or other related subjects.

Sociology A Level is an excellent preparation for degrees in Sociology, Psychology, Criminology, Law, History, Theology, HSPS, PPE, Archaeology & Anthropology, Social Work, International Relations, Development Studies, Media Studies, Marketing and Business Studies.

The study of sociology as the main element or as part of a combined degree at university can lead into careers in the civil service, police, military, politics, lobbying, social work, healthcare, teaching, the media and business.

There are many areas of sociology that could be explored through an EPQ including depth studies on A Level topics or the sociology of health, mental health, global development, poverty, welfare and the media.

Useful Links: 

www.tutor2u.net/sociology

www.thecrashcourse.com/courses/sociology

www.britsoc.co.uk/what-is-sociology

www.britsoc.co.uk/media/23892/bsa_discover_sociology.pdf

www.thecompleteuniversityguide.co.uk/league-tables/rankings/sociology

Team Bio:

Martyn Aldridge, Head of Sociology, studied History and Sociology at the University of Manchester, since then he has advanced his passion for understanding group behaviour and different cultures through extensive travels. Martyn taught Sociology for over twenty years in schools and colleges before introducing the subject to Queen’s in 2017.

 

BTEC

Sport

BTEC

Sport

To view all Sport and Physical Education information

Click Here  

A Level

Textiles

A Level

Textiles

Textiles is a well-established and exciting course which has been introduced to offer pupils the opportunity to gain the essential skills required to pursue a career path within the textiles, fashion and other creative industries. The most essential requirement of the course is a passion for the subject and a desire to explore the creative and expressive use of materials. Students study methodologies with emphasis placed on innovation and experimentation, inspired by contemporary textiles.

Key elements of the course: 

The A Level course builds upon knowledge, understanding and the development of skills through research, drawing, design development and critical and contextual understanding. You will generate practical work, ideas and research from primary and contextual sources and then present your outcomes based on themes developed from personal starting points. In the second year of the course there are two-linked elements, each with separate final outcomes – practical work and personal study.

The development of these is shown through supporting studies; your innovation and creativity will be essential as will be your own, strong, personal identity. The externally set assessment is again based on one broad-based thematic starting point and plenty of guidance is given to you through the preparatory period.

Why take A-Level Textiles?

Course Overview PDF

A Level Textiles opens the door to further and higher education and leads to careers in textile, fashion, interior and jewellery design, photographic and fashion styling, fashion prediction, fashion illustration and costume design.

The Art Department also runs many co-curricular activities after school and at weekends such as fashion clubs, and the studios are generally a hive of activity. There is an annual art exhibition, featuring work from senior year groups held during the Summer Term. However visitors to the Art department coming at any time of year are extremely welcome and will see a vast array of creative work displayed in a variety of mediums.

The pupils’ work is displayed all around the campus, and if you visit Queen’s College you will see many examples of stunning and adventurous projects and exhibitions. There are excursions to art galleries such as the Saatchi Gallery, Royal Academy, Tate Modern and Tate Britain. We have also visited sculpture parks and National Trust properties as well as residential trips to St Ives, Venice, New York, Barcelona and Paris, which helped inspire the pupils in their work. In addition, we arrange workshops with practising artists, working in a variety of disciplines to help inspire the pupils to explore new techniques.

There is also an annual exhibition, featuring work from senior year groups held during the Summer Term however visitors to the Art Department coming at any time of year are extremely welcome and will see a vast array of creative work displayed in a variety of mediums.

EPQ (Extended Project Qualification)

EPQ (Extended Project Qualification)

The EPQ (Extended Project Qualification) is an exciting opportunity offered to and taken up by most pupils in Year 12.  The qualification was the brainchild of several universities who aimed to improve the quality of their undergraduate admissions. As such, it is highly respected and pupils who undertake the EPQ are typically offered lower grades for university admission and also find the transition from school to higher education much smoother.  The EPQ allows students to learn new skills, such as independent researching, referencing and assimilating a large amount of information for the completion of their projects.

There can be two routes through the EPQ: a formal 5000 word essay or the creation of an artefact accompanied by a 1000 word essay.  The choice of topic is indeed endless and varied.  Pupils will either have a burning interest in a particular subject and want to extend their knowledge or perhaps an aspect of their A Level course that has piqued their imagination.  Recent years have seen pupils focus on serial killers, climate change, prison reform, reminiscence therapy for those with Alzheimer’s, disaster relief and why some people participate in sport, to name but a very few.

The artefact route has seen some imaginative and awe inspiring creations including making a wedding dress out of parachute silk, designing an eco-friendly house, recycling surf boards, making a biogas converter and even creating a pizza oven in their own garden.  This one is shown in the time lapse video below.

Alongside their artefact or essay, the pupils are expected to complete a production log which is essentially a diary or blog of their EPQ journey and this is done in stage as they move through their project. All students have to deliver a presentation of their EPQ at the end, before evaluation of their project.

The success rate at Queen’s is quite remarkable, with over 80% achieving an A*, which is well above the national average.

If you would like to know more about this exciting prospect as part of consideration of Queen’s Sixth Form, or perhaps discuss an idea you might have for the EPQ, please do not hesitate to contact Donna Ashman da@queenscollege.org.uk

Course Overview PDF