Sixth Form Curriculum Overview

Pathways

There are three pathways available in Key Stage 5:

  • Academic
  • Vocational
  • Academic / Vocational blend
  • Academic = A levels or Applied A levels. These are mainly exams and coursework.
  • Vocational = BTEC qualifications. These are practical courses all assessed through assignments.
  • Blend = Combination of academic and vocational qualifications.

Levels and Qualifications

The courses on offer in the sixth form will allow you to gain either Level 2 or Level 3 qualifications. Depending on prior attainment at Key Stage 4, students will either select all Level 3 qualifications or a blend of Level 2 and Level 3.

  • Level 3 courses: AS Levels, A levels, Applied A levels or BTEC National Award, Certificate or Diplomas.
  • Level 2 courses: GCSE English and GCSE Maths. If you have not gained a C grade in GCSE English or Maths you must continue to study to gain either of these qualifications throughout your time in the sixth form.

Typical Year 12 Schedule

  • 3 courses or 3 1/2 courses – academic, vocational, blend
  • Course contact time – 5 hours per subject = 15 hours
  • Course non-contact time – 5 hours per subject =
  • 20 hours of learning outside of lessons (minimum)
  • Daily VMG time – 20 mins
  • Weekly Guidance session – 1 hour
  • Private study – 9 hours
  • Enrichment

Typical Year 13 Schedule

  • 3 courses – academic, vocational, blend
  • Course contact time – 5 hours per subject = 15 hours
  • Course non-contact time – 5 hours per subject =
  • 15 hours of learning outside of lessons (minimum)
  • Daily VMG time – 20 mins
  • Weekly Guidance session – 1 hour
  • Private study – 9 hours
  • Enrichment

Extended Project Qualification

EPQ is a qualification that showcases your ability to take learning to a higher level. It allows you to explore a chosen subject venturing into aspects that really interest and inspire you. It can help persuade universities that you have skills and knowledge to achieve at higher level of study and work independently. Employers will value it because you can design it around your chosen career and therefore show both commitment to a specific career path and demonstrate an accelerated level of knowledge in a specific area.

It is a single piece of work, chosen by the student, which can take two forms:

  • 5,000 dissertation (10 – 15 typed pages)
  • 2,000 project plus an ‘artefact’.

EPQ is the equivalent to half an A Level; it takes one year to complete and graded in the same way as all other AS Levels, however there is the opportunity to be awarded an A* grade. Undertaking EPQ is seen as an addition to your compulsory curriculum of 4 subjects in Year 12 and 3 in Year 13. Students in either Year 12 or 13 can opt to do EPQ however this must be agreed through your Learning Manager.

You will be allocated two teacher-led periods each week for EPQ and three hours will be registered and supervised in the library.

Core Maths

Core Maths is the equivalent to half an A Level; it takes two years to complete is graded in the same way as all other AS Levels. It is seen as a course to booster the mathematical skills that complement science and social science based Level 3 courses, such as biology, psychology, geography and sociology.

The course is taught for three hours a week during Year 12 and 2 hours a week during Year 13 so that the skills needed are embedded over the duration of your post 16 studies. The course is most suitable for students who attain a C or low B at GCSE.

Post 16

16-19 Study Programme Requirements

All our Post 16 pathways are designed to provide structure and a challenging personalised learning programme. Every student in Years 12 and 13 will study a combination of academic and/or vocational qualifications that are linked to their future plans.

Students who embark on a study programme who do not yet have a grade 4 or higher (C or higher) in mathematics or English will be required to work towards the achievement of these qualifications as part of their programme.

The pathways that students follow will maximise progression opportunities onto the next stage of their education, employment or apprenticeship.

Qualifications

The following qualifications are currently delivered in Years 12 and 13:

  • Art — Art & Design
  • Art — Photography
  • Design Technology — 3D Product Design
  • English — English Language
  • English — English Literature
  • Humanities — Geography
  • Humanities — History
  • IT and Business — ICT
  • IT and Business — Business
  • Languages — French
  • Languages — German
  • Mathematics — Level 3 Core Maths
  • Mathematics — Maths & Further Maths
  • Performing Arts — BTEC Music (performing)
  • Performing Arts — BTEC Dance
  • Performing Arts — BTEC Performing Arts
  • Science — Biology
  • Science — Chemistry
  • Science — Physics
  • Social Science — Law
  • Social Science — Psychology
  • Social Science — Sociology
  • Sport — BTEC Sport
  • Sport — BTEC Health & Social Care
  • Extended Project Qualification (EPQ)