Sixth Form Options
September 2019 Sixth Form options booklet 2019.indd 1
Mrs Alison Marsh Head of Sixth Form
Sixth Form is an important time for all pupils. Exeter School offers excellent academic success, a wide range of extra-curricular activities and supportive and caring staff. Our aim is to allow pupils to develop a sense of responsibility, teamwork and leadership skills.
Dr Julia Bawn Sixth Form Adviser Mr Paul Bell Senior Sixth Form Tutor Miss Jade Booth Senior Sixth Form Tutor
We believe pupils should prepare for their lives after school and support and encouragement is offered as pupils make decisions towards achieving their future goals. We look forward to welcoming you into the Sixth Form at Exeter School and sharing many wonderful memories with you.
Exeter School, Victoria Park Road, Exeter, Devon EX2 4NS www.exeterschool.org.uk | 01392 273679 | @ExeterSchoolUK Sixth Form options booklet 2019.indd 2
Exeter School AN INTRODUCTION TO THE SIXTH FORM The Sixth Form is an exciting time and one to really look forward to. They are important years for which pupils have chosen their own academic programme and, later on, decide on their next steps in education that will then lead on to interesting and stimulating careers. The increased depth of understanding required will present new opportunities to learn vital skills, become more independent in their studies and inspire future choices. Extra-curricular options provide an important educational balance and help pupils to build further confidence as well an understanding of how to get on with and get the best out of both others and themselves. This booklet provides information to help pupils with their first step on this journey, that of choosing their A Level subjects. It gives the timescale for doing so, details the processes involved and the guidance and support that is available. All A Level subjects have now been reformed within the past three years. The key change is that A Level outcomes are now determined by terminal examinations at the end of the Upper Sixth. As a consequence, Exeter School does not enter pupils for any external examinations at the end of the Lower Sixth but instead has a rigorous set of internal examinations. Our main academic policy remains; pupils study four subjects in the Lower Sixth (plus the Extended Project Qualification if they wish) and then carry on with either three or four subjects in the Upper Sixth. More detail about these reforms can be found on page 11. As well as always striving to maintain our high standards in academic exams, we do not neglect the many other factors that contribute to the importance of the Sixth Form years. Sixth Formers are making the transition from school pupils to adulthood by developing new skills, forming more of their own opinions and beginning to plan their futures. We offer individual care and advice through our pastoral system. The Futures Programme helps to prepare pupils for the full range of exciting possibilities open to them as they look beyond their A Level studies. The school library provides a superb resource in which Sixth Formers can work independently on their chosen subjects. There are also numerous opportunities to develop sporting and cultural skills, along with chances to take responsibility and show leadership and initiative. This booklet attempts to give a brief flavour of these parts of Sixth Form life within Exeter School. Further detail can be found on our website. I hope that you find this guide to the Sixth Form useful. Should you require any further information or wish to discuss a particular matter, then please do not hesitate to contact me. Dr James Wilson Deputy Head (Academic)
Sixth Form Curriculum A Level Choices
All pupils will study four A Levels in the Lower Sixth - one subject should be chosen from each column below. Each A Level is usually assigned 7 periods per week in the Lower Sixth and 8 periods per week in the Upper Sixth. In the Upper Sixth, pupils can choose to continue studying all four subjects to achieve an A Level in each, or to drop to three subjects. If your first choice of four subjects does not fit into these option columns then please seek advice from Dr Wilson. The general rule is to work out a combination of subjects which does fit the columns, but then let Dr Wilson know your ideal combination as well. Some subjects are more moveable than others (see subjects with an * below) and it is sometimes possible for requests to be accommodated. Dr Wilson will be able to advise you on how possible your combination is likely to be. If the columns cannot be altered as you wish, it is usually always possible to provide a combination that is appropriate to the Higher Education or employment ambitions of a pupil. Column 1
Drama & Theatre Arts*
History *There may also be some flexibility as to the column in which this subject is taught.
Extended Project Qualification (EPQ): In addition to the four main subjects above, pupils may also wish to work towards the Extended Project Qualification. This is a two-year course based on independent study and tutorials, which can be taken as part of a pupil’s Futures Programme (see page five). Pupils are required to plan, research, write, reference, edit and present a 6000-word dissertation. The title is chosen by the pupil but would normally be related to one or more of the pupil’s A Level subjects or proposed course of study at university. Pupils will need to be highly self-motivated and need to possess (and be willing to improve) the skills of independent learning and study required to produce this in-depth piece of work. The real value of the course lies outside of the fact that it counts as an AS Level. It will provide evidence at interview (and on the UCAS form) of undertaking a serious piece of in-depth academic work in the pupil’s chosen field.
Advice and Further Information
Advice and Further Information There are two important formal occasions where advice can be sought. • ‘Into the Sixth Form’ Open Evening – 5.30-8pm on Wednesday 23 January 2019 This is for both current and new pupils. The options system will be explained and questions will be able to be put to Heads of Departments. • Upper Fifth Parents' Evening – 5pm on Wednesday 30 January 2019 Current pupils can use this for further individual consultation. Individual advice will also be given by the Senior Management Team, Heads of House and subject teachers. Completion of the Options Form Members of the Upper Fifth should return their provisional options to the school by 9am on Monday 4 February 2019 (this is to be done online via the Parent Portal). New pupils will be asked to complete their options form (on paper) when accepting the offer of a place to join the Sixth Form following entrance interviews. How to choose A Level subjects? Making choices about which A Level subjects to study is rarely easy. The factors to be taken into account when choosing subjects include the following: • enthusiasm for further study of the subject • ability previously shown in this or a related field • intentions for higher and further education and future career choices • suitability of the combination of subjects • keeping future options open Please read this booklet carefully and then ask for advice from teachers, parents, Heads of House, Heads of Department and current Sixth Form pupils. In particular: • discuss your suitability for subjects with teachers • talk to Sixth Formers studying those subjects • ask yourself what you like about particular subjects • discuss with parents and Head of House • look beyond the Sixth Form to university and career possibilities Changing Option Choices If you change your mind after the submission of these provisional options in February then you must see your Head of House and the Deputy Head (Academic). Subject choices may be modified, if necessary, in the light of your GCSE results in August. It should be noted, however, that in the event that a course is heavily over-subscribed, February requests will take precedence over later changes. Heads of House will give guidance, and all option choices should be finalised/confirmed with them after GCSE results in August and before the start of autumn term 2019. In the very rare case that a course is heavily over-subscribed then the limited admission to such a course will be based on three principles: • previous level of performance in related subjects - e.g. GCSE grades. • date of application - February requests will take precedence over August requests. • importance of the subject for a pupil's subsequent career. It is also important to note that A Level courses listed in this prospectus are all expected to run in September 2019, but are dependent on a viable number of pupils for each course.
Conditions of Entry and Awards Conditions of Entry, Bursaries and Music Scholarships
Entry into the Sixth Form The majority of Sixth Formers come from Exeter School’s Upper Fifth Form (Year 11) but there has been a long tradition, and a significant number, of entries into the Sixth Form by girls and boys from other schools. To qualify for the Lower Sixth Form at Exeter School, applicants and current Upper Fifth pupils need to have achieved a minimum of three grade 7 and three grade 6 GCSEs, including English and Mathematics. On the individual subject pages in this booklet, Heads of Department detail the requirements for their particular subject. In addition, entry for external applicants depends on an interview and a reference from their present school. Once an applicant has registered, he or she will be invited to an interview day, which may include a short test for selected subjects. After studying this booklet and informing the Registrar of the proposed choice of A Level subjects, an individual timetable of interviews and tests will be drawn up. These interviews will be held from November until March in Year 11 in order to allow reasonable prediction of GCSE success, whilst also being early enough to allow a preliminary discussion of A Level choices and to give applicants time to undertake the work necessary to meet Exeter School’s entry standards. New entrants should inform the school of their GCSE results before attending the induction day for new Sixth Form pupils in September. The school is normally unwilling to accept a situation whereby Sixth Form pupils live in accommodation beyond the pastoral care of their families. Parents and pupils who wish, extraordinarily, to make such arrangements must first discuss their plans with the Headmaster. Pupils must have his prior agreement if they are to remain in or join the Sixth Form of Exeter School. The Upper Sixth Form courses build on the foundations of the previous year. Pupils will be expected to perform well in the first year of Sixth Form study in order to proceed to the second year. Bursaries and Music Scholarships Bursaries: Exeter School has a number of means-tested bursaries available for applicants to the Sixth Form. In 2019, the St John’s Hospital Educational Foundation grant will offer three full bursaries for Sixth Form entry. In addition, the George Williams Bursaries will offer two free places to study the Sciences in the Sixth Form, made possible by a generous bequest from the estate of a former pupil. Further details of all bursaries are available from the Registrar. Music Scholarships: Sixth Form Music Scholarships are available to both current pupils and external applicants, offering a 10% discount on tuition fees. Music Exhibitions, which assist with the cost of music lessons, are also available. Sixth Form applicants are eligible for the top music award – the Sammy Sargent Music Scholarship, offering a remission of 25% against tuition fees. Music Scholarship auditions will be held on Friday 25 January 2019.
Beyond A Levels
The Futures Programme Alongside our core academic programme, at Exeter School we offer a number of high quality and wide ranging opportunities for pupils which focus on preparing them for their life beyond Sixth Form. In addition to A Levels, there are a number of important skills all pupils need to develop in order to ensure their desired future options remain open to them. To this end, we have developed a coordinated ‘Futures Programme’ of engaging lectures, workshops and other activities for Sixth Form pupils, which take place in dedicated timetabled slots. Each activity is focused on developing one or more of three key strands essential for future success; employability, careers and university. Employability This focuses on the development of the appropriate skills, attitudes and values in preparation for the path a pupil may wish to take in the future. This strand includes practical workshops (such as ‘Producing the perfect CV’ and ‘Presenting with Confidence’) as well as broader sessions on leadership and wellbeing (including our Mindfulness workshops developed in conjunction with the Mindfulness in Schools Project). Careers This strand focuses on developing our pupils’ understanding of the nature of the labour market and of all the different careers options open to them. It also includes opportunities to receive specialist careers advice from those already working in their desired field. This includes our highly successful specialist advice for Medics, and our ‘“Help!” I haven’t a clue’ workshop for pupils unsure about their next steps. University As part of this strand, pupils receive guidance on course and university choices, and develop their understanding of the UCAS application process. This includes our successful programme for pupils who wish to apply for very competitive courses and/or highly selective universities. (There is more information about Higher Education and Careers Advice on page eight). In order that all pupils receive the greatest benefit from this innovative programme, they are able to plot their own path over two years through their own special and unique series of different activities. The pupils themselves decide which workshops will be the most beneficial to them. As part of the Futures Programme, there are also a number of landmark events throughout the Lower Sixth year, including a Careers Convention, the Higher Education Forum and a Lower Sixth Careers Conference. Additionally, when pupils return from examination leave in the summer term, they will all take part in a series of special events (alongside starting the second year of their A Level academic study). These are fun, active and very productive, and will further develop the three strands of employability, careers and university. These special events include team building and leadership activities and the ever-popular Business and Enterprise Day. For more information about this exciting and innovative programme, please see the Futures Programme insert included with this booklet.
The Wider School Curriculum The Wider School Curriculum
Introduction The Sixth Form at Exeter School is much more than a place to study for A Levels. It provides a wide range of opportunities to develop existing interests and activities. Sixth Form pupils also develop leadership skills and have access to many sources of advice about future Higher Education and employment. Two years in the Sixth Form provide a host of exciting and enjoyable opportunities outside of the classroom. Pastoral Care Exeter School places great emphasis on high quality and effective pastoral care. We believe that our knowledge and understanding of each individual is key; we aim to develop the personal wellbeing of our pupils while supporting them to achieve their very best academically. The main focus for pastoral care and academic guidance in Exeter School is the House system. Everyone belongs to a House made up of approximately 70 pupils from the 3rd Form to the Upper Sixth and they remain in that House throughout their time at the school. The House staff play a very important role in the lives of our pupils, getting to know them well and supporting them throughout their school career. Houses are led by a Head of House and supported by a Deputy Head of House and a Sixth Form Tutor. Exeter School believes firmly in working closely with our families and we host many opportunities throughout the year which aid in developing strong relationships. Pupils and parents are encouraged to attend as many Parents’ Evenings, school events and social functions as possible. Parents are also urged to keep in touch with their son or daughter’s Head of House regarding any matters affecting his or her academic or general development, or in connection with his or her future career plans. Mr Hughes (Senior Deputy Headmaster), Mrs Fairweather (Deputy Head, Pastoral), Mrs Marsh (Head of Sixth Form) and Reverend Tom Carson (Chaplain) also contribute significantly to the pastoral system. Leadership Many Sixth Formers are given jobs of responsibility in helping to run the school: as prefects, in clubs and societies, within the house system, in school teams, and as part of their role within the Friday 8 programme (see page 37). All these positions offer opportunities to learn more about leadership and management. Employers, choosing between several applicants, look for those with the most wellrounded personalities. A pupil’s exam results are, of course, extremely important. However, it is an advantage to be able to have hard evidence that they have skills such as: • an ability to accept responsibility and to carry out tasks reliably • an ability to work as part of a team • an ability to think and act independently of instruction or supervision • an ability to lead junior pupils and those from their peer group The positive qualities needed as an adult are precisely those which pupils are encouraged to develop here as Sixth Formers.
The Wider School Curriculum
Sport In the Sixth Form, pupils may choose from an extensive range of competitive or recreational sports during the Wednesday games programme. These include badminton, body conditioning, climbing, cricket, cross-country, football, hockey, netball, rugby, shooting, squash, swimming, tennis and weights and fitness training. Throughout the school, the focus is firmly on both participation and enjoyment with the aim to make sport and physical activity a positive way of life for all pupils. The facilities onsite include a Climbing Wall, Fitness Suite, Athletic Development Gym, Squash Courts, Sports Hall, Dance Studio and 25 metre Indoor Swimming Pool that are available to pupils and are extensively used by Sixth Formers. Music, Drama, Outdoor Education, Overseas Trips and Tours There are many opportunities for pupils to be involved in music through the school orchestras, jazz bands and choirs and to take part in school plays or assist with work behind the scenes as stage crew, make-up artists or lighting assistants. Those with an interest in outdoor pursuits can develop them through the Combined Cadet Force, Duke of Edinburghâ€™s Award Scheme or Ten Tors. The school supports applications made to the British Exploring Society (BSES). Several subjects also run field-work trips in the UK and abroad. The list below gives a flavour of some of the extended tours and expeditions for Sixth Formers from the last academic year (2017/18). 22-26 October 30 October-4 November 31 October-4 November 23-25 March 11-13 May 21-24 June 3-8 July 13-19 July 14-21 July 12-17 July 21 July-6 August
Languages trip to Bordeaux, France Politics and History Tour to New York and Washington DC Geography trip to Iceland Model United Nations Conference, Haileybury Ten Tors Challenge Gold D of E Practice Expedition, Dartmoor Gold D of E Qualifying Expedition, Brecon Beacons CCF RN Camp: Roadford Lake CCF RAF Camp: RAF Wittering CCF Army Camp: Okehampton Sports Tour to Argentina
Higher Education & Careers A Level Subject Choices: Higher Education and your Future Career
Jobs and professions have many different entry requirements and demands. Careful investigation and research along with participation in both Higher Education and Careers related events (through our Futures Programme) as each pupil progresses through school will ensure they are best equipped with the knowledge and skills to enable them to fulfil their potential. Each pupil’s combination of A Level subjects will affect the range of courses open to them in Higher Education and indeed the career areas they may be able to follow. This applies particularly to combinations of Mathematics and Science subjects and advice on the most suitable combination is available from a number of sources. The definitive source of information for most institutions is now the individual University website. There are additional paper publications available in the Sixth Form Study Room along with the Careers and Higher Education intranet pages, which are full of useful information and links. When considering their A Level options, pupils are strongly encouraged to seek appropriate advice from staff or to use the UCAS website to check their choices are suitable for their desired university course. The UCAS website details what courses are available at which university and what A Level or GCSE grades are required or preferred. In addition to this all pupils should be mindful of the following when making their choices: Qualifications •
Some careers demand a very high standard of qualification (e.g. Veterinary Science, Medicine, Law) so pupils should speak with their subject teachers and Head of House about their chances of achieving the necessary A Level grades. It is always advisable to have thought of a Plan B and even a Plan C when thinking about career options.
Acceptance on some courses may depend upon having completed relevant work experience. It cannot be stressed enough that work experience – be that with a company or through being involved in a club or society at school for example – is essential to build and develop skills and to show commitment. Pupils should see the Careers Advisor at any time for advice and information on what is out there.
GCSE qualifications can and may be used by some universities as selection criteria for making conditional offers.
There are an increasing number of additional examinations required for entry into Medicine, Veterinary Science, Law and Maths at many universities (including several courses at Oxford and Cambridge). These are generally sat close to or during the October half term of the Upper Sixth year.
Higher Education & Careers
Abilities All pupils are encouraged to try and identify career paths that match up to their own abilities and skills. It is important to consider which GCSE subjects you achieved well in, but non-examinable skills (soft skills) are equally as important. For example: • • • • • •
Are you able to communicate well with others? Can you persuade others? Do you possess powers of leadership? Are you the sort of person who wants an active / outdoor career? Do you have practical skills? Are you a good team member?
It is important to note that our successful Futures Programme will help pupils develop these abilities throughout their time in the Sixth Form (see page five or the Futures Programme insert included with this booklet). Interests Pupils should think about what careers they might find enjoyable and deeply satisfying. People often do best at things in which they have a real interest so it makes sense to consider careers from the point of view of each pupil’s own interests and hobbies. Throughout their time in the Sixth Form, pupils can access the latest information on Higher Education and Careers, either in the Careers Department upstairs in the Library or the Sixth Form Centre. Additionally, updated and useful links and advice can be found on the related school intranet pages. Mr Manoj Chitnavis is the Higher Education Advisor and Mrs Ruth Cheesman is the Careers Advisor. They are able to offer guidance and advice at any point during the year. This can be via email, phone or in person in a one-to-one or group meeting. Higher Education research should certainly be started early in the Lower Sixth. Time spent at this early stage will ensure a relatively straightforward passage through the university admissions procedure in the Upper Sixth.
2018 A Level Results Exeter School A Level Results 2018 Subject
Art Biology Business Studies Chemistry Classical Civilisation Computing Design & Technology Economics Electronics English French Further Mathematics Geography History Latin Mathematics Music Physics Politics Religious Studies Spanish Theatre Studies
7 23 9 21 3 2 1 21 6 17 3 12 31 16 1 43 4 29 26 9 3 2 289
0 8 0 6 1 0 0 5 2 3 2 7 11 3 0 13 1 8 3 2 0 0 75 26%
2 7 1 12 1 0 0 5 2 7 1 2 10 4 1 20 1 7 6 4 1 0 94 33%
3 3 5 1 1 0 1 8 1 2 0 3 7 6 0 3 2 8 11 1 0 2 68 23%
2 2 3 1 0 1 0 2 1 5 0 0 3 2 0 5 0 6 5 1 2 0 41 14%
0 2 0 1 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 1 0 0 1 1 0 0 8 3%
0 1 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 1%
0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0%
TOTAL % achieving grades
Pass Rate 100% A* Grades 26% A*- B Grades 82% Number of Pupils: 93
Exeter School A Level Results for the last five years Year
2014 2015 2016 2017 2018
24 27 18 23 26
42 43 37 39 33
89 92 84 91 82
100 100 99.7 100 100
A Level Reforms
A Level Reforms The Department for Education has now introduced reforms to all A Level subjects, staggered over several years. The reformed A Levels are linear qualifications, with all the exams for the A Level subject being taken at the end of the Upper Sixth year. This is nothing new to those of us who taught or took A Levels before Year 2000, when modularity began in earnest. We certainly believe that Exeter School pupils have nothing to fear from these changes. The reforms were initially implemented to nine subjects in September 2015, with eight subjects following the year after and the remainder in September 2017. Our current Lower Sixth and Upper Sixth pupils are therefore now being taught courses where every subject has been reformed. Our most recent A Level results in summer 2018 included results from seventeen reformed subjects. These results were equally as strong as in previous years and we are very confident that we prepared our pupils well for these reformed exams. As mentioned in the introduction to this booklet, these reforms have not affected our main academic policy. Pupils continue to study four subjects in the Lower Sixth (plus the Extended Project Qualification if they wish). The main difference with the reformed A Levels is that the AS exam grade does not contribute towards the final A Level grade and, therefore, all of the content taught in the first year will be assessed along with the second-year content at the end of the two-year course. We took the decision two years ago to remove AS exams from our Lower Sixth programme and pupils instead sit a rigorous internal exam programme at the end of their Lower Sixth year. The pupils can then use their results in these exams to help them decide which subjects to carry on with in the Upper Sixth (either three or four subjects). The one subject which is an exception to the above is Geography. This subject has still not been reformed, since the department has chosen to follow the Cambridge International Examinations (CIE) syllabus. This is an international A Level so is not subject to British Governmental reforms. The pupils who select this subject will still take AS exams, although they will take them at the end of the Upper Sixth year along with their other A Level exams. Because of this, pupils will follow exactly the same programme with Geography as with the other, reformed A Levels.
Details of Sixth Form Courses 2019-2021
Art Biology Business Chemistry Classical Civilisation Computer Science Design & Technology Drama & Theatre Arts Economics Electronics English Literature English Language Geography
13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25
History Latin Mathematics Further Mathematics Modern Languages â€“ French, German & Spanish Music Physics Politics Psychology Religious Studies The Friday 8 Programme
26 27 28 29 30 32 33 34 35 36 37
Upper Fifth pupils should return their provisional options to the school by 9am on Monday 4 February 2019 (this is to be done online via the Parent Portal). New pupils will be asked to complete their options form (on paper) when accepting the offer of a place to join the Sixth Form following entrance interviews.
OVERVIEW Pupils follow the AQA Fine Art syllabus, which allows them to explore many different aspects of the subject. The course is designed to build on the skills, knowledge and understanding introduced at GCSE and pupils are required to develop practical work supported by critical/contextual studies in one or more of the following disciplines: drawing, painting, mixed-media, sculpture, installation, printmaking, moving image (video, film, animation) and photography.
The A Level Course In the first year of the course, pupils will be introduced to a variety of experiences, employing a range of media, processes and techniques appropriate to their area of individual study. Their knowledge of Art will be extended through contextual research, experimentation with materials, development of ideas and the realisation of final outcomes. Pupils will be encouraged to recognise and develop their own strengths in the subject. Great emphasis is placed on the individuality of approach and the willingness to take risks with techniques and concepts. The second year of the course is divided into two key areas: 1. Personal Investigation (60% of A Level) A personal investigation in which pupils develop practical work in response to an idea, issue, concept or theme of their choice. The practical work is supported by a personal study of 1000 – 3000 words. (No time limit) 2. Externally Set Assignment (40% of A Level) An externally set assignment based on eight starting points from which pupils will select one. Pupils will work on preparatory studies before producing a conclusive personal response in the supervised time. (Supervised time: 15 hours)
Assessment Both the Personal Investigation and the Externally Set Assignment are assessed internally by departmental staff and then moderated by a visiting examiner from AQA. ENTRY / APTITUDE REQUIREMENTS • Minimum GCSE Art grade 6 is strongly recommended. • Pupils should have an enquiring mind and be highly motivated. • Pupils are expected to be organised, self-disciplined and independent thinkers. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION Recording from direct experience is an essential part of the course and life drawing classes are held throughout the Autumn and Spring terms to help pupils to develop this critical skill. Gallery visits are an important part of the course and trips are arranged to local and national exhibitions. Sixth Form artists are encouraged to enter work into exhibitions and, in recent years, they have exhibited locally at the Brook Gallery, Exeter; the Marle Gallery, Axminster and in the Doddiscombsleigh Art Show. Career information: the subject develops pupils’ imagination, creative involvement and aesthetic sensibilities. Professions involving Art and Design are wide ranging including: Fine Art, Architecture, Theatre Design, Fashion, Graphic Design, Illustration, Animation and Publishing.
Exam Board: AQA Specification Name: Art and Design
For further information please contact Mrs Escott 13
OVERVIEW This course provides a foundation in fundamental biological principles whilst exploring modern applications of Biology. You will, therefore, extend the traditional areas of Biology introduced at GCSE but will also gain an up-to-date insight into technological, social, ethical and environmental implications of the subject.
The A Level Course The topic areas studied in the Sixth Form build upon and extend the material covered in IGCSE Biology. The four topics taught in the L6 cover many of the fundamental principles, with the U6 work building on these and using them in context. 1. Biological Molecules This topic includes the study of carbohydrates, lipids, proteins, nucleic acids and water and looks at the roles these essential molecules of life play within organisms. 2. Cells We study the ultrastructure of cells, the ways in which substances move into and out of cells, how cells divide and how cells of the immune system interact. 3. The exchange of substances between organisms and their environment We study specialised exchange surfaces such as gills, insect tracheae, lungs as well as gas exchange in leaves. This topic continues with the study of the circulatory system and plant xylem and phloem. 4. Genetic information, variation and relationships between organisms We look at how the genetic code is read and the causes of variation. This leads into studying adaptations, natural selection and classification and environmental influences on diversity. 5. Energy transfer in and between organisms Photosynthesis and Respiration within organisms are studied. This leads onto energy transfers between organisms in feeding relationships, followed by the cycling of nutrients in ecosystems. 6. Organisms respond to changes in their internal and external environments Stimuli and receptors, nervous coordination involving muscle contraction and hormones are all studied in this topic. 7. Genetics, populations, evolution and ecosystems Populations in ecosystems are studied, with some associated field-work. This is followed by genetic inheritance and how evolution leads to speciation. 8. DNA technology and control of gene expression We look at how different features control whether, and when, genes are expressed. This is followed by techniques of gene technology such as genetic engineering, screening and DNA fingerprinting.
Assessment There are three examination papers at A Level at the end of the second year. Paper 1 and 2 will test content and practical skills from topics taught in the first and second years respectively. Paper 3 will test the full course material, with questions of a synoptic nature (assessment papers are 2 hours). There will also be a teacher-assessed practical endorsement based on pupils completing a minimum of 12 core practicals undertaken throughout the course. ENTRY / APTITUDE REQUIREMENTS Minimum GCSE Biology grade 6 (with similar Chemistry grade) or 6,6 in Dual Award Science. A grade 6 in GCSE Maths is strongly recommended. A certain amount of organisation and ability to learn factual information is necessary, but an aptitude for applying knowledge to new contexts is essential for success in the exams. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION Career information: a broad range of career areas are open to graduates in biological sciences: Agriculture, Biotechnology, Biochemistry, Cell Biology, Dentistry, Ecology and Conservation, Forestry, Genetics, Horticulture, Marine Biology, Medicine, Nutrition, Pharmacy, Physiotherapy, Psychology, Veterinary Science, Zoology. It also keeps the door firmly open for more general careers in business and finance. Exam Board: AQA For further information please contact Mrs Metcalf Specification Name: 7402 14
OVERVIEW This A Level provides a comprehensive investigation into the business world, determining the purpose of businesses and how they make decisions. It provides an insight into a range of diverse topics from marketing and human resources through to finance and the legal structures of businesses. THE A LEVEL COURSE In the L6, pupils are given a preliminary insight into the major functional areas of a business. This will include Marketing, which looks at how firms successfully market their products and position themselves, and Operations Management, which investigates how businesses organise their production lines and measure quality control. Pupils will also learn some of the management techniques used by businesses and critically assess the leadership styles employed by various firms. Financial concepts are also covered here, and pupils will be able to investigate common financial problems encountered by firms such as cash-flow problems and issues around raising capital for start-up businesses and PLCs alike. In the U6, pupils will build upon the work covered before and look at how firms operate strategically in order to survive and grow. Pupils will learn how firms are affected by the macroeconomic environment and how firms have to adapt to changes brought on by political, economic, technological and social changes. Using various case-studies they will come to understand some of the success stories from the corporate world and some of the failures. Finally, looking to the future, pupils will assess the impact of innovation, internationalisation and digital technology on the firm.
Assessment Three 2 hour written examinations, assessing the work from both the L6 and U6 years. The papers will contain a mixture of multiple choice, short and long answer questions. All the papers will assess relevant knowledge and skills as all papers are synoptic. Paper 3 is based on a single case study where pupils are expected to view businesses holistically, answering long essay style questions.
ENTRY / APTITUDE REQUIREMENTS No previous qualification in Business is required for the A Level course and pupils are expected to have at least a grade 6 in Maths, English Language and English Literature. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION Most pupils who study Business at A Level go on to study Business or a related course at university and there are a wide range of courses available. Although not essential, Business can be seen as a gateway to courses as diverse as Finance and Management, Marketing, Accountancy, International Business and Strategic Management.
Exam Board: AQA Specification Name: Business
For further information please contact Mr Mackintosh 15
OVERVIEW Chemistry is central to the study of modern science because it is the only subject which provides knowledge of the structure of substances and an understanding of the ways in which they behave and interact. THE A LEVEL COURSE The units covered in the Sixth Form build upon the material covered in GCSE Chemistry and extend it into many areas, dividing the subject into its three traditional areas of Inorganic, Organic and Physical Chemistry. The work in the L6 year covers the fundamental principles of these three areas, with the U6 work then building and expanding on them. The topics the three areas cover are detailed below: 1. Inorganic Chemistry The chemicals of the periodic table are the focus of the Inorganic Chemistry. Chemical trends are studied in the L6, with particular focus on group II and group VII. In the U6, the varied chemistry of transition metals, their structures and their complexes forms a large part of the course. Periodicity and the patterns across the periodic table helps to link both years. 2. Organic Chemistry This unit illustrates the importance of carbon compounds. In the L6, we delve deeper into the chemistry of many of the compounds already studied at GCSE, such as alkanes and alkenes, alcohols and halogenoalkanes. In the U6, further functional groups such as carbonyls, aromatics compounds and amines are studied. A brief introduction to biochemical compounds has been included into the course, with modern analytical techniques such as NMR and chromatography making up the remainder of this section. 3. Physical Chemistry Among the familiar GCSE topics expanded upon here are atomic structure, amounts of substance, chemical bonding, energy changes, redox reactions, reversible reactions and the periodic table. In the U6, a more quantitative approach is taken to gaseous equilibria, kinetics and energy changes. Acids, bases, buffers and pH are also studied, along with Thermodynamics.
Assessment Three 2 hour written examinations, assessing the work from both years. The papers contain a mixture of multiple choice, short and long answer questions. They also assess practical skills, with the final paper containing further questions on practical techniques and data analysis. In addition, there will also be a teacher-assessed practical endorsement based on pupils completing a minimum of 12 core practicals undertaken throughout the course.
ENTRY / APTITUDE REQUIREMENTS Minimum GCSE Chemistry grade 6 or GCSE Double Award Science grades 6,6; although 7 grades are strongly recommended. GCSE Mathematics grade 6. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION University course admission: Chemistry is essential for all courses in Chemistry, Medicine, Dentistry, Biochemistry, Materials Science, Pharmacy and Chemical Engineering. Career information: Although many Chemistry graduates work in industries involved with a range of materials such as oil, pharmaceuticals and processed food, just as many find the skills they have developed allow them to embark on a range of careers such as Accountancy, Marketing, Banking and the legal profession.
Exam Board: AQA Specification Name: 7405
For further information please contact Mr Tear 16
OVERVIEW The OCR A Level course is designed for pupils who are fascinated by the Greeks and Romans, but prefer to read about them in English. We study selections from their literature and history and gain an overview of how they saw their world, of their extraordinary achievements and of how they influenced the world we live in now. Anyone who has enjoyed studying English and History should enjoy this course, which involves a great deal of imagination, enquiry and debate. There is no Latin or Greek language requirement and it is not necessary to have studied the subject at GCSE. THE A LEVEL COURSE The A Level course consists of three exciting components, giving pupils the opportunity to explore the Ancient World through both literature and visual/material sources. Pupils study one set text and one cultural topic during the L6 year and expand on these during the U6 year. One new component, the study of ancient beliefs and ideas, is added during the Upper Sixth. 1. The world of the Hero (40%) Using English translations, pupils will study the epics of Homer and Virgil by appreciating the texts as literary pieces of their own unique cultures. Assessment Method: 2 hour 20 minutes written paper 2. Culture and the Arts (30%) Pupils have the opportunity to study fascinating topics, such as Greek Theatre or Greek Art, by looking at a variety of sources taken from both literature and visual material. Assessment Method: 1 hour 45 minutes written paper 3. Beliefs and ideas (30%) Pupils will look into the belief frameworks which shaped the Ancient World. Topics include Love and Relationships, Democracy and the Athenians and Politics of the Late Roman Republic. Pupils will also study relevant literature and visual/material sources. Assessment Method: 1 hour 45 minutes written paper
ENTRY / APTITUDE REQUIREMENTS Pupils require a minimum of Grade 6 English at GCSE level, as assessment is by essay. They do not need to have studied GCSE Classical Civilisation. There is no requirement for any knowledge of Classical Greek or Latin. An interest in literature and history and an ability to write analytical essays is essential. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION An A Level in this subject is an excellent preparation for a Classics, Classical Studies, Ancient History or Archaeology degree course. Nearly all university Classics Departments now offer courses to candidates with no prior knowledge of Greek or Latin. An A Level in Classical Civilisation is also an excellent background for the study of English, American or European literature, as so many writers have been influenced by Greek and Roman literature, ideas and mythology.
Exam Board: OCR Specification Name: Classical Civilisation
For further information please contact Ms Shrubb 17
OVERVIEW The overall aim of this subject is to encourage you to develop an understanding of the principles of problem solving using computers. Your studies will help you to understand how the hardware components of a computer system work and can execute a program, as well as how data is transmitted over networks and the internet. You will study how binary can be used to represent both the data and programs in a computer, and how high- and low-level languages can be used to solve an immense variety of problems, making use of well-chosen data structures and standard algorithms. The syllabus also features sections on relational databases, functional programming, regular expressions and software development to provide a stimulating, challenging and well-balanced course. The programming languages taught will be C#, Haskell and AQA’s assembly language. THE A LEVEL COURSE 1. Paper 1 (40% of A Level) This paper focuses mainly on computational thinking, programming and applying theoretical concepts to problem-solving situations. Part of the paper relates to Pre-Release Material – a readymade program provided by the exam board which we will study and develop further in lessons together before the exam. Assessment Method: 2½ hour on-screen examination 2. Paper 2 (40% of A Level) This paper focuses on the theoretical aspects of the course as well as giving some consideration to the moral, ethical, legal and cultural impact of developments in computing. The question formats are predominantly short answer with some multiple choice and some extended answer questions. Assessment Method: 2½ hour written examination 3. Non-exam assessment – computing practical project (20% of A Level) The NEA assesses the pupil’s ability to create a program to solve a practical problem or investigation of their own choosing. Pupils must also document the analysis, design, testing and evaluation of their solution. Typical choices of problems include games, simulations, databases or interactive websites although the range of choices is extensive. The NEA offers a wide scope for pupils to relate their other interests to their work in Computer Science. Assessment Method: Project documentation, code bank and testing videos ENTRY / APTITUDE REQUIREMENTS • An interest in problem solving would be an advantage and the ability to stick at a task until it is solved. Some numeracy is required for converting numbers into binary, but A Level Maths is NOT necessary. • A GCSE or IGCSE in Computer Science is NOT a requirement. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION University course admission: a qualification in Computer Science combines well with many subjects especially those involving a logical and systematic approach. Programming skills are important in all scientific, engineering and mathematical disciplines as well as increasingly in the creative arts. Although rarely listed as a pre-requisite for an undergraduate Computer Science Degree, having studied A Level offers an advantage as an introduction to some of the first year material. For those pupils who choose to discontinue the subject after one year, the majority of programming concepts are covered in L6, which means that they will already be equipped with highly relevant skills to take away if they do end up dropping Computer Science as their fourth subject. Exam Board: AQA Specification Name: Computer Science
For further information please contact Ms Pinches 18
DESIGN & TECHNOLOGY
OVERVIEW Pupils seeking careers and university courses in industrial design, engineering, architecture, product design and other specialist design disciplines should be considering this course as a fundamental ingredient in their skill set. The combination of in-depth material, process and construction knowledge, combined with innovatively solving real world problems through design, prototyping and testing, create well rounded pupils capable of delivering realistic products for manufacture. Engineers with both practical skills and theory knowledge are most sought after. In the 2-year course, two assessments are completed; a single 2½ hour examination and a lengthy design and make project. THE A LEVEL COURSE Component 1
Principles of Design and Technology Written examination: 2½ hours 50% of qualification 120 marks
(Paper code: 9DT0/01)
In this unit, pupils will develop a knowledge and understanding of a wide range of materials and processes used in the field of design, technology and engineering. Industrial and commercial practices, quality control systems, health and safety, environmental factors, legislation, digital technologies and information handling are all studied. The knowledge informs decisions on Non-examination Assessment and is tested through the written examination. Component 2
Independent Design and Make Project Non-examination assessment 50% of qualification 120 marks
(Paper code 9DT0/02)
In this unit, pupils are given the opportunity to develop their creative, technical and practical skills through a design and make project. Pupils will demonstrate their creativity and flair by designing, making and evaluating a prototype. Industry standard skills using Autodesk Inventor 2017 3D Computer-Aided Design (CAD) and rapid prototyping techniques including laser cutting and 3D printing will be taught and used in Nonexamination Assessment. Pupils will also be supported to perfect their skills of design sketching and innovative problem solving.
ENTRY / APTITUDE REQUIREMENTS • Grade 6 at GCSE in a Design & Technology related course • Good quality graphic communication skills and aptitude in Design & Technology • The ability to analyse products and apply knowledge to real situations • Ability to work independently and to look at problems with an open mind • Organisation, time management and a good work ethic are vital ADDITIONAL INFORMATION University course admission: Design & Technology is one of the broadest subjects and thus it has a wide range of future university and career opportunities. These include academic courses associated with Manufacturing Industries, Engineering, Product Design, Project Management and Architecture. Exam Board: Edexcel Specification Name: Product Design (9DT0)
For further information please contact Mr Rose 19
DRAMA & THEATRE STUDIES
OVERVIEW Drama and Theatre Studies is a course which is challenging in its requirement for pupils to have both practical skills and the ability to write analytically and originally in a formal written examination. This is one of the only truly creative courses and promotes communication, collaborative learning and problem solving; fostering creativity as well as personal and social development. It is a well-balanced course, encouraging pupils between academic rigour in the study and analysis of texts, and creativity in putting theory into practice via performance. THE A LEVEL COURSE The A Level Drama and Theatre Studies course is assessed by examination of performance (or technical) skills, as well as through a written examination. Weighting for assessment is 60% practical and 40% written examination. The course will involve the study of a variety of theatre practitioners, including Brecht, Stanislavski, Lecoq, Frantic Assembly and Berkhoff. The performance units of the course allow pupils to apply their knowledge and understanding of these practitioners through the presentation of a re-interpretation of a text as well as a performance of a text in its original form. The course then stretches pupils further and challenges their creativity by asking them to devise a piece of theatre using the knowledge and experience they have gained previously. Pupils are required to produce a number of ‘Creative/Performance Logs’ to accompany their practical work, reflecting on the process of working towards performance. Pupils can use a range of texts for practical assessment, either as stimulus for re-interpretation, devising or for straight performance. These vary from Shakespeare to Shaw, to Brecht, to Beckett and on to more contemporary playwrights such as Butterworth, Morgan or Wertenbaker. Pupils will have to consider and use plays for performance from pre-1956 and post-1956, encouraging the development and knowledge of a history of theatre. In the written examination, pupils will have to answer questions on plays from a prescribed list. They will also be asked to answer questions on the texts studied, approaching the plays from an actor’s, a director’s and a designer’s point of view. In addition to the texts studied and performed, the department require pupils to attend a number of theatre trips to live theatrical performances – this is a requirement of the course as pupils will be asked to discuss how live theatre has influenced them.
ENTRY / APTITUDE REQUIREMENTS There is no stereotypical pupil of Theatre Studies. A GCSE in Drama and Theatre Studies is not required. However, an interest in the theatre, imagination, a readiness to engage in independent research and an enthusiasm to work with others are all essential qualities. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION The skills you will acquire in this course will equip you for a multitude of careers, as well as teach you a wide range of skills beneficial to life in general. Pupils have gone on to all the major universities including Oxford and Cambridge, following courses across the academic disciplines. There have also been successful applicants to all the major Drama schools. Post university, many have made successful careers in the theatre, television and cinema (working with, for example, Sir Peter Hall and Woody Allen).
Exam Board: Eduqas Specification Name: Drama and Theatre Studies
For further information please contact Mr Brough 20
Music is thriving at Exeter School and pupils have the opportunity to perform regularly in Exeter Cathedral and local churches, as well as in the Music School’s extended concert hall. There is a full programme of annual musical events including the Carol Service, Spring and National Trust concerts as well as the annual Choral Society, whose members include senior pupils, staff and families of pupils. The Music department went to Manhattan in 2017 for a Choral Tour (pictured) and is going to Liguria, Italy in 2019.
In 2018, Senior School pupils took on two of the greatest plays in Shakespeare’s folio – Julius Caesar and Henry V - with an all female and all male cast respectively. Anyone interested in taking part is welcome to tread the boards, play in the orchestra or help out behind the scenes with choreography, lighting, wardrobe and make up.
The Sixth Form prepare for life after school through an extensive ‘Futures Programme’ of support, enhancement and enrichment activities which focus on employability, careers and university through workshops, lectures and individual sessions ranging from team building to mindfulness to how to prepare a great CV.
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Exeter School regularly runs major expeditions. Recent adventures include Vietnam in 2015, the Indian Himalayas in 2013, Peru in 2011 and Namibia in 2009. These expeditions are open to Sixth Formers and are designed to challenge pupils and develop leadership and team skills. In Summer 2017, pupils travelled to Cuba with Operation Wallacea to collect data and observe scientists first-hand, with a particular emphasis on Biology and Geography fieldwork. In 2019, current members of the Upper Fifth and the Sixth Form are travelling to Borneo.
The Sixth Form have their own purpose-built centre, study and seminar rooms and a cafeteria with hot snacks on offer at break time. The Sixth Form offers an opportunity for pupils to learn with greater independence and there is a distinct shift in the classroom culture with pupils expected to read around their specialist subjects in order to bring their views to the classroom.
Sixth Formers have the opportunity to take part in the Young Enterprise Scheme, the UK’s largest business and enterprise education charity. They set up and run a trading company for a year under the guidance of a Young Enterprise Business Adviser, developing their team working and problem solving skills. The challenge is to design and market innovative products. In recent years, pupils have reached the Devon Finals winning ‘Best Trade Stand’, and ‘Best Overall Business’, and represented the county in the West of England Round of the Competition.
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Exeter School runs the Duke of Edinburghâ€™s Award Scheme and the school is ideally located to take advantage of the beautiful Devon countryside for expeditions on Dartmoor and Exmoor. There are also frequent trips abroad as well as around Great Britain. Walking and navigation training dovetails well with the annual Ten Tors Challenge. In 2018, pupils took part in a sea kayaking option at Gold award level with training at Haven Banks Outdoor Education Centre and expeditions around the Isle of Skye and the Scottish Highlands.
Combined Cadet Force cadets undergo structured training with the expectation that, by the final year of the Sixth Form, they will be delivering the training and leading the junior cadets. They enjoy residential camps across the UK every summer. Eight Exeter School pupils have won Army Scholarships in the last three years. Four senior cadets have won accolades recently; three pupils have been selected to be a Lord Lieutenant cadet for Devon and another has received a fully-funded Navigational Officer Cadet Sponsorship.
Sixth Formers are able to help develop their leadership skills in many ways, including being House and School Prefects. Sixth Formers often assist the Junior School with a variety of activities and clubs, conduct tours for visitors and prospective parents and represent the school at public events. The Sports Leaders option enables pupils to learn about the role of coaching and extend their knowledge in a range of sports over a two-year course. Sixth Formers are given the opportunity to qualify as lifeguards and put this skill into practice in the indoor pool.
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Pupils regularly enter academic competitions such as the Biology, Chemistry and Physics Olympiads and Senior Maths Challenge. Nine pupils have been awarded a prestigious Arkwright Engineering Scholarship in the last nine years and three pupils in five years have been awarded the Royal Geographical Association Award. A number of subjects have won Good Schools Guide Awards for excellence in recent years. Pupils receive a pleasing selection of offers across a broad spectrum of universities respected for their teaching and research work.
Every year, Upper Sixth pupils are given the chance to experience a general interview away from school. Every effort is made to match the pupil to an interviewer with similar interests, for example potential medical students with doctors. This is a unique opportunity for pupils to practise interview techniques and to improve their presentation skills.
Exeter School offers numerous opportunities for curriculum enrichment such as lectures from visiting speakers, master classes, trips and leadership training. Pupils also take part in various clubs and societies, as well as the Model United Nations. Pictured are MedSoc pupils with alumnus and Speech Day Guest of Honour Professor Paul Cosford, Director of Public Health England.
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OVERVIEW We cannot satisfy all our human wants because our resources are strictly limited in supply. So we are all forced to make choices â€“ to economise. Economics studies the logic of those choices. We start at the elementary level of consumers buying goods and services and then go on to develop an understanding of how and why Governments choose between different national objectives. We will look at a range of issues from trying to understand why some economies are not developing as rapidly as others, to looking at how individual consumers behave in the exciting new field of Behavioural Economics. The course will give you a thorough grounding in economic ideas and an understanding of what makes the economic system tick. THE A LEVEL COURSE The A Level course is divided into two distinct areas; 1. Microeconomics This looks at the operation of individual markets and provides an insight into how markets work. In the L6, pupils will look into a range of markets, from commodity markets (including the oil market) to currency markets. Pupils will also look at Market Failure, where government intervention is required to maximise the welfare of society. Markets studied here include the education markets, transport markets and the drugs market. In the U6, pupils investigate market structures, looking at how monopolies and oligopolies operate and how the government intervenes in these markets to ensure they operate efficiently. 2. Macroeconomics This area of the course looks at how the British economy works and how the Government intervenes to try and influence key national indicators. Pupils assess economic performance by looking at inflation, unemployment, trade and economic growth and consider Monetary and Fiscal Policy to achieve goals. In the U6, pupils look at the international environment, looking at the global financial markets and international institutions such as the IMF, World Bank and WTO. Pupils will also be expected to critically assess the economic impact of global events and logically deduce consequences.
Assessment Three 2 hour written examinations, assessing the work from both the L6 and U6 years. The papers will contain a mixture of multiple choice, short and long answer questions. Paper 1 is based on Microeconomics and Paper 2 is based on Macroeconomics. Paper 3 is a synoptic paper which draws on both microeconomic and macroeconomic topics.
ENTRY / APTITUDE REQUIREMENTS No previous study of Economics is required to study the A Level course, although an interest in current affairs is expected. A minimum Grade 6 in Maths, English Language and English Literature is required. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION Although you do not need to study A Level Mathematics to study A Level Economics, most university courses require A Level Mathematics. (Those considering Economics at Cambridge and the LSE are advised to take Further Mathematics).
Exam Board: AQA Specification Name: Economics
For further information please contact Mr Mackintosh 21
OVERVIEW Just look around you! Electronics is everywhere! Electronics specialists are in demand! In the A Level Electronics course you will learn about the basic principles and building-blocks of Electronic systems and how to use these basic ideas to design and build more complex systems. There is a lot of practical work. Almost every circuit and system that we describe in theory is then built and tested by pupils. The culmination of the course is a major individual project, in which pupils design, build and test an electronic system to their own specification. THE A LEVEL COURSE Core Concepts System synthesis, DC electrical circuits, input and output sub-systems, energy and power: in DC and AC circuits. Component 1 Semiconductor components Logic systems Operational amplifiers Signal conversion AC circuits and passive filters Communications systems Wireless transmission Instrumentation systems Component 2 Timing circuits Sequential logic systems Microcontrollers Digital communications Optical communication Mains power supply systems High power switching systems Audio systems
Assessment 40%: Principles of Electronics, 2 hour 45-minute written examination. 40%: Application of Electronics, 2 hour 45-minute written examination. 20%: Non-examination assessment comprising 2 practical tasks: Design and program a microcontroller system Design and build a substantial integrated electronic system. ENTRY / APTITUDE REQUIREMENTS â€˘ Mathematics and Physics (or Additional Science) at a minimum of grade 6. â€˘ No Electronics knowledge required. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION In recent years, Electronics pupils have gone on to a wide range of different degree courses at top universities, mainly in Engineering but also in other subjects such as Music, Sound Technology, Economics, Sports Management etc. Exam Board: Eduqas Specification Name: Electronics
For further information please contact Mr Schramm 22
OVERVIEW English Literature at A Level involves reading and exploring some of the most stimulating and influential poems, novels and plays that have shaped, and continue to shape, the world we live in. If you are interested in the big ideas which have forged who we are as thinking individuals, and have an ear for language and the way words create music and light, then English Literature is the subject for you. Over two years, you will hone your close reading skills and your ability to analyse and argue, both in speech and in writing. You will become a better thinker, a better communicator and a better writer. English Literature is a stimulating, well-respected (and facilitating) university subject in its own right and is essential for a number of important careers such as law, media, the performing arts and business. Indeed, if you want to read Law then English Literature is the most important subject to study. It is also a superb subject to take in conjunction with science subjects because it gives you important communication skills and helps make you a well-rounded, thoughtful individual. If you plan to study at a Russell Group or a similarly high-performing university, then English Literature is definitely a subject you should consider taking. THE A LEVEL COURSE In the Lower Sixth, you will build your close reading skills through the study of an exciting range of modern, accessible and stimulating poetry. In addition, you will study two novels: Frankenstein and The War of the Worlds. This component encourages lively discussion of the ethical and political ideas which underpin these works whilst also focusing on the craft of Mary Shelley and H G Wells. In addition, you will explore one modern play, Tennessee Williams’ classic tale of the American Deep South, A Streetcar Named Desire. In the Upper Sixth, you will study Shakespeare’s Hamlet, arguably his finest play, and one which speaks to the human condition and the emotional and existential dilemmas which engage and trouble us all. You will also study an anthology of poetry from the modernist period – with featured poets including Robert Frost, T S Eliot and E E Cummings. These are poems which, quite simply, everybody who wishes to understand the age they live in should read. You will also complete a piece of comparative nonexamination assessment which is an opportunity for you to work independently. We offer a range of influential and stimulating texts to study, from Brideshead Revisited and The Great Gatsby to Wuthering Heights and True Grit. All components of the course are externally assessed other than the comparative non-examination assessment. You will be assessed on a range of factors which include the ability to: • Write clearly and express ideas succinctly; • Analyse the ways writers shape meanings in their texts and explore how a single text may create a range of different interpretations; • Explore how contextual factors influence literary texts; • Make connections across texts. In addition to the texts studied as part of the course, the English Department also encourages wider reading through lunchtime discussion groups. The aim here is to cover a range of texts – from medieval to modern day – in an informal setting to inspire pupils to extend their reading and their love of literature. ENTRY / APTITUDE REQUIREMENTS You are likely to have achieved at least two GCSE 6 grades in English Language and Literature. More importantly, you should take pleasure in reading, the discussion of ideas and the art of writing. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION Teaching is in sets, taught by two teachers. Opportunities will be provided for those pupils interested in reading English at university and specialist Oxbridge tuition is available: the department has a strong record of acceptance for Oxbridge and Russell Group universities. Exam Board: Edexcel Specification Name: English Literature
For further information please contact Mr Dobson 23
OVERVIEW The grammatical structure of the English language is at the heart of A Level English Language. In this course, you will read a range of functional real-world and media texts, exploring how they are constructed, from a grammatical standpoint, using the tools of linguistic analysis. This will benefit the quality of your own writing and allow you to communicate in a wide range of spoken and written situations. In addition, the course involves developing competence in data and comparative analysis which are useful skills in various careers. This will be a fulfilling subject for you if you are interested in linguistics (i.e. the science of language – the way grammar is used to create meaning in texts). It is a subject which complements the study of modern foreign languages but will also appeal to those who intend to pursue a vocational career in business or science. THE A LEVEL COURSE In the Lower Sixth, you will study entry-level linguistics by looking at a range of written and spoken data and exploring how the circumstances in which texts are both produced and received affect the nature of those texts. You will also look at how language choices help writers construct identities in texts. In both cases, your analysis will be guided by grammatical frameworks such as phonetics and syntax. In a separate component, you will explore how children between the ages of 0 and 8 years old learn to speak and write. In the Upper Sixth, you will partly return to and enhance what you have learnt in the Lower Sixth. You will also study how the English language has changed over the years since 1550, and the reasons for this change, as well as conducting independent research into a topic of your choice, such as the relationships between language and power or between language and gender. All components are externally assessed other than an internally assessed unit in which you produce a piece of writing (and a commentary) based on a specified genre. You will be assessed on a range of factors which include the ability to: • Use grammatical/linguistic terminology and apply some of the key concepts behind linguistic analysis; • Evaluate how language features and contextual factors affect meaning in written texts; • Make connections across different texts; • Use the English language to communicate effectively. ENTRY / APTITUDE REQUIREMENTS Many pupils who study English Language will go on to study Linguistics at university but the subject also provides a useful grounding for those wishing to study Modern Languages, Psychology, Business, Tourism and the Social Sciences. You are likely to have achieved at least two GCSE 6 grades in English Language and Literature. Please note that numbers may be limited for this course so all interested pupils must discuss their desire to study the subject directly with the Head of English. Exceptionally, pupils may be allowed to study both English Literature and English Language but this will be subject to the agreement of the Head of English. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION Teaching is in one set, taught by two teachers.
Exam Board: Edexcel Specification Name: English Language
For further information please contact Mr Dobson 24
OVERVIEW “Where we come from, what we do, what we eat, how we move about and how we shape our future are all directly the province of the geographer. More than ever we need the geographer’s skills and foresight to help us learn about the planet – how we use it and how we abuse it.” Michael Palin. THE A LEVEL COURSE Paper 1 Core Physical Geography Section A: Three data response questions Section B: One structured question from a choice of three 1 hour 30 minutes Paper 2 Core Human Geography Section A: Three data response questions
Core Physical Geography Hydrology and fluvial geomorphology • Atmosphere and weather • Rocks and weathering Core Human Geography •
• Population Section B: One structured question from a • Migration choice of three • Settlement dynamics 1 hour 30 minutes Paper 3 Advanced Physical Geography Advanced Physical Geography Options Options Candidates answer questions on two of the • Hazardous environments optional topics. • Hot arid and semi-arid Each topic consists of one structured question environments (10 marks) and a choice of essay questions 1 hour 30 minutes Paper 4 Advanced Human Geography Advanced Human Geography Options Options Candidates answer questions on two of the • Environmental management optional topics. • Global interdependence
Each topic consists of one structured question and a choice of essay questions 1 hour 30 minutes PLEASE NOTE This is an international A Level and the syllabus is followed by overseas schools as well as prestigious independent schools in the UK. The A Level is reported on a scale from A* to E. FIELDWORK
The Geography Department has a good programme of fieldwork, which usually includes an optional overseas fieldtrip. Recent locations have included Interlaken, Sorrento, Iceland and Sicily. There will also be two fieldwork day trips as part of the course. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION Geography is a popular degree course at university, where it can be studied as either a science or an arts subject. Pupils often choose to combine Geography with another subject such as Sports Science, Planning or Languages. A Geography degree gives pupils a wide range of transferable skills and this makes them very employable. Geographers take up employment in Business and Commerce, Research, Teaching, Tourism and Recreation Management, and also with environmental agencies, the UN and the EU. Exam Board: CIE Specification Name: Geography (9696)
For further information please contact Mr Hyde 25
OVERVIEW Exeter School offers a Modern History course that attempts to strike a balance between British, European and World History. The overarching theme (and course title) is: ‘The Development and Erosion of Democracy 1800-2000’. THE A LEVEL COURSE Paper 1: 1F: In search of the American Dream: the USA, c1917–96 This option comprises a study in breadth, in which pupils will learn about the dramatic political, economic and social transformation of the USA in the twentieth century, an era that saw the USA challenged by the consequences of political, economic and social inequalities at home and of its involvement in international conflict. The focus of study is on developments and changes over a broad timescale and so the content is presented as themes spanning a significant duration: 1917-80. This option also contains an in-depth study of historical interpretations on a broad question, which is contextualised by, and runs on from, the theme of what impact the Reagan presidency had on the USA in the years 1981–96. Paper 2: 2F.1: India, c1914–48: the road to independence This option comprises an in-depth study of the transition of the Indian sub-continent from a colony to independence. The gaining of Indian independence influenced both the nature of civil rights campaigning and the search for national self-determination throughout the world. Pupils will gain an in-depth understanding of the changing relationship between Britain and India from the outbreak of the First World War to the achievement of independence for the Indian sub-continent, and of the reasons for this, with particular reference to Indian nationalism.
Paper 3: 36.2: Ireland and the Union, c1774–1923 This option comprises two parts: the Aspects in breadth focus on long-term changes and contextualise the Aspects in depth, which focus in detail on key episodes. Together, the breadth and depth topics explore the Irish struggle for constitutional change and the ways in which the Irish economy and society changed and their impact on mainland Britain. This was a difficult period in the development of Irish society and for Anglo-Irish relations, involving passion, tensions and commitment to different causes that were in many ways irreconcilable; and an outcome that, by 1923, left many dissatisfied and eager for further change. Non-examination Assessment: Hitler’s Germany 1933-45 This unit allows pupils to examine issues of historical interpretation and historiography. The work of three historians will be used to debate a key issue, such as ‘How powerful a dictator was Hitler?’ or ‘How popular were the Nazis?’ A single extended essay is written of no more than 4000 words. ENTRY / APTITUDE REQUIREMENTS At least a grade 6 in GCSE History or a similar subject e.g. English. You do not have to have a GCSE in History to study the A Level course. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION History is a rigorous yet accessible academic A Level subject that is held in high regard by universities and employers alike. Apart from obvious career routes, such as history lecturing, teaching, research, archivist, librarianship and museum curatorship, History is also a useful background for careers in law, journalism, management, accountancy and business. Many of our pupils go on to study the subject at university including three reading History at Cambridge in the last four years.
Exam Board: Edexcel Specification Name: History
For further information please contact Mr Trelawny 26
OVERVIEW This OCR board allows pupils to study the language beyond GCSE Latin to a level where they can begin reading original texts by Roman authors with confidence. THE A LEVEL COURSE The units covered in the Sixth Form naturally build upon the material studied during the GCSE course. New elements, such as translation of unseen verse literature, will gradually be introduced, and pupils also get the opportunity to study a fascinating new selection of Latin authors. The work in the Lower Sixth will cover more complex grammatical features and the introduction of one verse and one prose set text, with the Upper Sixth expanding on these, as well as introducing additional authors to be studied. There are four components to the course: 1. Unseen Translation (33%): Pupils learn how to translate texts from a variety of prose authors as well as a set verse author by building on their knowledge of vocabulary and grammatical structures. Assessment Method: 1 hour 45 minutes written paper 2. Prose Composition or Comprehension (17%): Pupils use their knowledge of vocabulary and grammar to answer questions about a Latin prose and verse text. Alternatively, they can choose to translate English sentences into Latin. Assessment Method: 1 hour 15 minute written paper 3. Prose Literature (25%): Pupils study two Latin prose literature set texts in depth; they will appreciate the style as well as the content of the passages set, and will complement their reading of the Latin with passages studied in English. Assessment Method: 2 hour written paper 4. Verse Literature (25%): Pupils study two Latin verse literature set texts in depth; they will appreciate the style as well as the content of the passages set, and will complement their reading of the Latin with passages studied in English. Assessment Method: 2 hour written paper ENTRY / APTITUDE REQUIREMENTS Pupils should have at least a grade 6 in Latin and English at GCSE level, although a 7 in Latin is strongly recommended. They need to be interested in literature, history and, in particular, in the way different languages work. CLASSICAL GREEK For pupils who already have at least a GCSE Grade 6 in Classical Greek, it may be possible by negotiation to study this language at A Level, depending on the number of pupils who come forward and the availability of teaching staff. The syllabus is similar to the Latin syllabus. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION An A Level in Latin or Classical Greek leads naturally to a degree in Classics, Ancient History or Archaeology, or joint honours degree (e.g. English and Latin). They provide a particularly useful background for the study of European Languages and Literature, or European History before 1700. However, Latin and Greek pupils are well prepared for any Arts degree course. Students of Medicine and Law will also find their knowledge of Latin and Greek very useful, helping them to recognise and understand technical terms quickly. Classicists enjoy a reputation as accurate analytical thinkers and many find successful careers in politics, the civil service and the media, as well as in academic life. Exam Board: OCR Specification Name: Latin
For further information please contact Ms Shrubb 27
OVERVIEW Mathematics A Level continues to develop the topics studied in GCSE or IGCSE Mathematics, and introduce methods and techniques used in many subjects at university level and beyond. The A Level Mathematics course covers a range of pure and applied Mathematics, including Mechanics and Statistics. Mechanics at A Level is not essential for A Level Physics but could be advantageous if you are considering university courses such as Physics or Engineering. Statistics is increasingly important in many fields such as Biology, Geography, Business, Economics and Marketing. Mathematics is also an interesting subject to study for its own sake. THE A LEVEL COURSE The breakdown of the course (including assessment) is shown below. Calculators are allowed throughout and each paper is worth a third of the overall qualification. Pupils must answer all questions. 1. Pure Mathematics 1 (2 hour written paper) Topics will include proof, algebra and functions, coordinate geometry in the (x,y) plane, sequences and series, trigonometry, exponentials and logarithms, differentiation, integration and vectors. 2. Pure Mathematics 2 (2 hour written paper – knowledge of all topics in Pure Mathematics 1 will be assumed) Further techniques involving proof, algebra and functions, coordinate geometry in the (x,y) plane, sequences and series, trigonometry and integration as well as an introduction to numerical methods. 3. Statistics and Mechanics (2 hour written paper with two sections) Section A: Statistics • Statistical sampling • Data presentation and interpretation • Probability • Statistical distributions • Statistical hypothesis testing Section B: Mechanics • Quantities and units in mechanics • Kinematics • Forces and Newton’s laws • Moments ENTRY / APTITUDE REQUIREMENTS A GCSE or IGCSE grade 6 is the minimum requirement, with a grade of 7 or higher preferred. Pupils studying Maths in the Sixth Form will need a graphical calculator to support their studies. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION University course admission: Mathematics A Level is a valuable subject for almost any course. It is essential for courses in Mathematics, Statistics, Sciences and Engineering, and desirable for most numerate courses such as Economics, Finance or Management. CAREER INFORMATION: Qualifications in Mathematics are essential for many careers in numerate subjects and helpful in many others; for example, many interviews for management posts require tests in numerical reasoning.
Exam Board: Edexcel Specification Name: Mathematics
For further information please contact Mrs Cartwright 28
OVERVIEW A Level Further Mathematics must be combined with Mathematics A Level. This means Further Maths is two options and therefore must be selected in Columns 1 and 3. The Maths and Further Maths courses are usually taught together in a dedicated group, who have a mixture of directly taught lessons and independent study lessons. The topics covered in Further Maths help broaden the pupils’ mathematical experience and knowledge beyond the A Level Maths course. THE A LEVEL COURSE The breakdown of the course (including assessment) is shown below. Calculators are allowed throughout and each paper is worth a quarter of the overall qualification. Pupils must answer all questions in each paper. The two options papers are most likely to be those listed below (numbers 3 and 4) but may vary depending on the interests of the set. 1. Further Pure Mathematics 1 (1½ hour written paper) Topics will include proof, complex numbers, matrices, further algebra and functions, further calculus and further vectors. 2. Further Pure Mathematics 2 (1½ hour written paper) Further techniques involving complex numbers, algebra and functions, calculus, polar coordinates, hyperbolic functions and differential equations. 3. Further Mathematics Option 1: Further Statistics 1 (1½ hour written paper) Poisson and Binomial distributions, Hypothesis testing, Central Limit Theorem, Chi Squared Tests, Probability Generating Functions. 4. Further Mathematics Option 2: Further Mechanics 1 (1½ hour written paper) Momentum and impulse, collisions, Centres of mass, Work and energy, Elastic strings and springs
ENTRY / APTITUDE REQUIREMENTS The Further Mathematics teaching takes place in Column 1 and Column 3. Pupils would usually have a GCSE grade 8 or 9 and should have the potential to achieve grade A* in A Level Maths. New pupils who have not studied IGCSE Maths would benefit from working through some additional topics during the summer before starting the course. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION University course admission: Further Maths is a major benefit for many courses in Mathematics, Sciences, or Engineering, and for those who enjoy the subject it is likely to enhance their application for any university course; it may provide an exemption from some first-year courses.
Exam Board: Edexcel Specification Name: Mathematics
For further information please contact Mrs Cartwright 29
MODERN LANGUAGES FRENCH, GERMAN & SPANISH
OVERVIEW In a post-Brexit world, we better get good at speaking other people’s languages, and quickly. To do this well, we must not only know the words speakers of other languages use, but understand the way they think. Most school leavers in the UK have no formal qualification in a foreign language, and of the minority who do, almost all stop at GCSE. An A Level in a modern language is first of all intensely practical: you will be able to communicate with others to a very high level, namely level B2 of the Council of Europe Languages Framework. However, a language at A Level also stands out as something very few of your peers and university competitors will have, the hallmark of someone culturally aware and sensitive, capable of first-rate expression in English as well as the foreign language, and a confident communicator face-to-face and on paper. A Levels in Modern Languages follow on neatly from GCSE, in that you will still be honing your skills listening to and speaking, reading and writing your chosen language. But you will also be translating into and out of the language, taking part in issue-based debates, and writing essays on a range of texts and films you will study in depth. And this last element is key: at A Level, you will gain a deep understanding of the people who use your chosen language as their means of everyday communication. Sometimes mentions of ‘literature’ cause concern, but this is usually the area of the course people remember the most: in the final analysis, they are simply stories giving you a window into a targetlanguage community. You will study the history of the main European countries where the language is spoken, and carry out a research project into an aspect of history or culture which has particularly captured your attention. But this is not a course in history or literature in disguise: it is about mastering comprehension and production of a foreign language. Every society has its particular quirks, fascinations, obsessions and idiosyncrasies, and mastering the language requires knowledge of these. To this end a range of visits abroad are offered to help you find out about the people who speak your chosen language, and you should look into the possibility of visiting a country where the language is spoken at least once during the A Level course. You will also spend one of your free periods working with a foreign language assistant, firstly in pairs, then later on your own, to ensure your oral skills are highly polished. Exam content: Module 1 Aspects of society in France, Germany, Spain: including the world of work, family make-up, education, environment and tourism Module 2 Artistic culture throughout the French-, German- and Spanish-speaking worlds: including music, media, and festivals & traditions Module 3 Multiculturalism in France, Germany, Spain: including the history, benefits and challenges of immigration, and public opinion including the extreme Right Wing Module 4 Political culture in wartime France; East Germany and reunification; the Spanish Civil War, the Franco dictatorship and the transition to democracy You will also study at least two literary texts and one feature film, analysing plot, character and authorial techniques.
Exam Board: Edexcel Specification Name: French/German/Spanish
For further information please contact Mr Latimer 30
MODERN LANGUAGES FRENCH, GERMAN & SPANISH
Assessment: 1. Listening, reading, writing (40% of the whole A Level) You answer a number of questions in the target language, based on several listening and reading passages, as well as a summary and translation into English. You control the listening soundtrack yourself, pausing and repeating as necessary. Assessment method: examination of 2 hours 2. Prose translation & text/film (30% of the whole A Level) You will write 2 essays in the target language on one of the several texts and films you have studied during the course. Assessment method: examination of 2 hours 40 minutes 3. Speaking (30% of A Level) You discuss with your teacher a stimulus card, based on one of the topics in the course not covered in your research project (6 minutes). You will then present and discuss the findings of your research project (2 minutes’ presentation, and 9-10 minutes’ discussion). Assessment method: 5 minutes preparation + 16-18-minute speaking examination ENTRY / APTITUDE REQUIREMENTS • Ideally a grade 7, 8 or above at GCSE (pupils with a grade 6 will be considered on an individual basis, but they often find A Level a bridge too far) • A willingness to discover the countries where the target language is spoken • A desire to debate, where there are no correct answers • A strong desire to speak the language, using any means necessary to get your point across • An interest in current affairs • A keen interest in the grammar and structure of languages • An eye for detail and the ability to spot patterns in words • A retentive memory for vocabulary ADDITIONAL INFORMATION University course admission: An A Level in a modern language is key to studying that language at tertiary level. It also demonstrates to admissions tutors in any discipline that candidates have completed one of the most academically rigorous A Level courses, involving a range of transferable skills and much independent research. Career information: The majority of linguists will combine their language skills with another discipline at undergraduate or postgraduate level. The possibilities of using language skills in the workplace are therefore many, including law, trade and business, industry, design, engineering and humanitarian work, as well as education, and the specialist fields of interpreting and translation, which are currently experiencing serious shortages of native English-speaker practitioners.
Exam Board: Edexcel Specification Name: French/German/Spanish
For further information please contact Mr Latimer 31
OVERVIEW Music at A Level is not intended just for pupils aiming to study music at a university or conservatoire. It is equally suitable as one of a mixed group of subjects leading to qualifications in other areas. It is highly facilitating, rigorously academic, creative and very practical, covering a wide range of valuable transferrable skills. Those familiar with GCSE music will recognise the course content, as it is very similar. The main parts of the courses are performing, composing and “appraising” (listening to, and writing about, music). At A Level the latter is based on study of musical techniques and set works. It covers a wide range of styles – classical music, popular music and jazz. It is 100% externally assessed, and consists of one written paper and two non-examined assessment components of performance and composition. THE A LEVEL COURSE Component 1: Performing is worth 35% The course aims at producing a performance of one or more pieces, performed as a recital. Performance can be playing or singing solo, in an ensemble, improvising, or realising music using music technology. Typically, the very best marks are achieved by performing pieces at or above Grade 6 standard. Component 2: Composing is worth 25% The course aims at producing a portfolio of compositions. One additional composition will assess compositional techniques such as 4 part harmony and the completion of Bach chorales, the other will be a completely free composition in any style or genre. The combined length of both compositions must total at least 4 minutes and 30 seconds. Component 3: Appraising. A written examination: 2 hours, worth 40% Knowledge and understanding of aural, musical elements, contexts and language, via short answer questions and essays. Application of knowledge through the context of three areas of study, each with a number of set works and playlists. Classical Music (specific examples of Baroque concerto, Mozart opera and Romantic piano music) Popular Music (based around the study of classic songs by the likes of Stevie Wonder, Beyoncé, Muse, Daft Punk, Labrinth and Joni Mitchell) Jazz, in Year 13, (including Pat Metheny, Miles Davis and Louis Armstrong) The detail of the set works can be found on the school intranet’s Music Department pages. ENTRY / APTITUDE REQUIREMENTS Pupils opting for one or both of these courses will need to have a strong commitment to studying and listening to music as well as to participating in practical music making and performance in the department. A Level candidates can access the best marks in the performance units performing at Grade 5 level in Lower Sixth, and Grade 6 level in Upper Sixth. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION Many former A Level Music pupils have gone on to take university and conservatoire degrees in music. The pupils have had considerable success with applications to the very best university courses. All universities recognise Music A Level as a rigorous and academic subject, and its balance with other A Levels is welcomed for all university courses. Employers are very interested in musicians due to the wide range of transferable skills acquired during the academic study of music. Alumni music graduates have gone on to work in many fields, including law, as administrators for arts organisations, as accountants and running businesses, in research and education, as well as performing. Exam Board: AQA Specification Name: Music
For further information please contact Mr Tamblyn 32
OVERVIEW The study of Physics is the study of our world all around us, from the fundamental building blocks of matter to the large-scale structure of the Universe and all the multitude of scales in between. The study of Physics allows us to understand how things work as well as, very importantly, designing and improving systems that can help both people and the planet. The study of Physics builds on problem solving and mathematics skills, as well as lateral, analytical and creative thinking. THE A LEVEL COURSE The material covered during the study of Physics in the Sixth Form is split into nine topics. Many of these are extensions of areas studied in Physics at GCSE whilst some are newer, more fundamental and even more exciting. Each topic includes a mixture of experimental work and theory components, along with an analysis of wider applications. In the Lower Sixth, the topics studied are: 1. 2. 3. 4. 5.
Measurements and their errors: doing and analysing practical work effectively Particles and radiation: a look at fundamental ideas in particle and quantum physics Waves: the mathematical study of waves and their many uses and applications Mechanics and materials: the study of dynamics, forces and energy and basic material science Electricity: extending ideas at GCSE to understand and use electrical circuits
In the Upper Sixth, the topics studied are typically more mathematical and more abstract and so even more interesting: 6. Further mechanics and thermal physics: circular and oscillatory motions and the study of heat transfer 7. Fields and their consequences: the study of gravitational, electric and magnetic fields 8. Nuclear physics: further understanding of the nucleus and its many applications including fission and fusion 9. Option topic: as a set, there is a choice of Medical Physics, Astrophysics, Engineering Physics or Turning Points in Physics
Assessment Three 2-hour written examinations, assessing the work from both the L6 and U6 years. The papers will contain a mixture of multiple choice, short and long answer questions. One paper each will focus mainly on material from the L6 and U6 years respectively. The final paper will assess practical techniques and data analysis as well as the chosen option topic. At A Level, there is also a Practical Endorsement (pass grade only). This is assessed as a series of set practical tasks completed throughout the two-year course.
ENTRY / APTITUDE REQUIREMENTS Minimum GCSE Physics grade 6 or GCSE Double Award Science grade 6,6 as well as minimum GCSE Mathematics grade 6. However a grade 7, 8 or above is very strongly recommended. A level Mathematics is not required but it is very beneficial. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION Physics is offered at a wide selection of universities but there are also a huge range of physics-related degrees including: Engineering, Medicine, Astrophysics, Geophysics, Materials Science, Computer Science and the Natural Sciences. Physics offers a vast array of career options and quality physicists are very much in demand. Employers actively seek out people who can prove their ability to think logically, understand complex ideas, problem solve, and apply ideas to the real world â€“ skills developed in Physics can help give you the edge. Exam Board: AQA Specification Name: Physics
For further information please contact Mr Tuohey 33
OVERVIEW This course offers an introduction to political concepts and methods, closely related to current affairs. Beginning from scratch, the course provides a comprehensive outline of Political Ideologies and a detailed overview (and comparison) of the political issues and systems that exist in the UK and the USA today. Pupils will learn how to evaluate and interpret political events through debate, discussion and written work. THE A LEVEL COURSE 1. UK Politics and Core Political Ideas (33.3%) This unit explores the nature of politics and how people engage in the political process in the UK. Pupils will explore direct and indirect democracy and the emergence and development of the UK’s democratic system. They will focus on the role and scope of political parties. Pupils will examine how electoral systems in the UK operate and how individuals and groups are influenced in their voting patterns, behaviour and political actions. This component will further examine the role of the media in contemporary politics. This section also allows pupils to explore the three traditional political ideas of conservatism, liberalism and socialism. They will learn about the core ideas and principles and how they apply in practice to human nature, the state, society and the economy, the divisions within each idea and their key thinkers. Assessment Method: 2 hour examination 2. UK Government and Optional Political Ideas (33.3%) This unit introduces pupils to where political decisions are made. This unit will include a study of the UK constitution. It further introduces pupils to the specific roles and powers of the different major branches of the government – legislative, executive, and judiciary – as well as the relationships and balance of power between them, and considers where sovereignty now lies within this system. Pupils will explore one additional political idea (Nationalism). They learn about the core ideas and principles, the effects of these ideas, the divisions within each idea and their key thinkers. Assessment Method: 2 hour examination 3. Comparative Politics: Government and Politics of the USA (33.3%) This unit will allow pupils to explore the US Constitution and the arguments surrounding this guiding document of US democracy. They will learn about the key institutions of government in the USA and analyse the manner in which they achieve this power and exercise it over their citizens. Pupils will begin to engage with this interaction by comparing and contrasting politics and institutions in the US with those in the UK. This will develop a wider understanding of politics as a discipline, underpinned by the theoretical concepts of comparative politics. Assessment Method: 2 hour examination ENTRY / APTITUDE REQUIREMENTS • No specific subject grades required. • Strong reading, writing, analytical and debating skills are an advantage. • Pupils should, above all, have some interest in current affairs. A willingness to watch quality news programmes and read newspapers is essential. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION Politics combines well with other A Level subjects such as Economics, History, Geography, English and Modern Languages. Politics can be studied at degree level in many different combinations, including courses in Politics, Philosophy and Economics (PPE – Oxford), Social and Political Studies (HSPS – Cambridge), History and Politics (Oxbridge), Political Economy (LSE) and International Relations. As a subject it demands high levels of analytical skill and is therefore potentially attractive to employers, particularly in combination with modern languages or other subjects. Exam Board: Edexcel Specification Name: Politics
For further information please contact Mrs Sheehan 34
OVERVIEW Have you ever wondered what it is that makes some people behave the way they do? For example, what turns someone into a Psychopath or makes someone afraid of spiders? How can different things affect your mood and even your confidence? Psychology is the scientific study of the mind and human behaviour. Not only will you gain insights into the human mind, but you will also participate in practical experiments that will enable you to understand the causes of human behaviour and how to change it. THE A LEVEL COURSE The A Level Psychology course will involve pupils analysing, interpreting and evaluating psychological concepts, theories, research studies and research methods. They will evaluate different therapies and treatments in terms of their appropriateness and effectiveness and will also carry out a number of practical research activities including the use of statistics and maths to interpret data. There are three main units: 1. Introductory Topics in Psychology (33.3%) This unit covers Social Influence, Memory, Attachment and Psychopathology. 2. Psychology in Context (33.3%) This unit includes Approaches in Psychology, Biopsychology and Research Methods. 3. Issues and Options in Psychology (33.3%) This unit includes the study of the major issues and debates in Psychology, Aggression, Cognitive Psychology and Stress. It is important to realise that Psychology A Level requires a high level of analytical and mathematical skills. Overall, at least 35% of the marks in assessments for Psychology will require the use of mathematical skills (at least at the standard of higher tier GCSE Mathematics) and scientific research methods.
Assessment Three 2-hour written examinations, assessing the work from both the L6 and U6 years. The papers will contain a mixture of multiple choice, short and extended answer questions.
ENTRY / APTITUDE REQUIREMENTS Minimum GCSE grade 6 in both Biology (or 6,6 in Double Award Science) and Mathematics, although a grade 7 is preferred. There is no requirement to have studied any Psychology before. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION Psychology develops a range of valuable skills, including critical analysis, independent thinking and research which are transferable to further study and the workplace. It therefore fits easily with many other subject areas and career choices including medicine, dentistry, nursing, management, advertising, teaching, research, market research and statistics. To pursue a career specifically in Psychology, pupils will need a degree that has been endorsed by the British Psychological Society and an appropriate postgraduate qualification e.g. in clinical psychology, educational psychology, occupational psychology or forensic psychology. Exam Board: AQA Specification Name: Psychology
For further information please contact Mrs Gooddy 35
OVERVIEW This course incorporates a variety of academic disciplines and is available to all. It offers variety and rigour, and requires the pupils to play an active role through discussion and enquiry. It is challenging and will make every pupil question long held ideas and look at how we make moral decisions in life. Whilst not an A Level in Philosophy, two thirds of the course is philosophically based and so it will provide a good introduction to philosophy for those interested in that subject. THE A LEVEL COURSE There are three components to the syllabus:
Religion and Ethics Philosophy of Religion Study of a Religion 1. Religion and Ethics: Pupils look at what it means to say something is ethical or moral. They consider what it means to call ethical theory absolutist, objective, relativist and subjectivist. This leads to the two main ways of categorising ethical theory; deontological and teleological. Several ethical theories are studied: • Natural Law; Situation Ethics; Utilitarianism; Religious Ethics; Kantian Ethics and Libertarianism. Pupils apply these theories to the following ethical topics: • Abortion; Euthanasia; War and Peace; and Genetic Engineering. 2. Philosophy of Religion: Pupils will have the opportunity to undertake an in-depth and broad study of fundamental philosophical themes ranging from arguments for the existence of God to the use of religious language. This is broken down into four themes: • Cosmological, Teleological and Ontological arguments for the existence of God • Challenges religious belief about evil and suffering. Philosophers such as Freud, Jung and Epicurus are studied. • Religious experience, including arguments surrounding near death experiences. • Religious language and the problems associated with the use of language, referring to scholars such as Wittgenstein and Phillips.
3. A Study of Religion: Pupils will study Christianity under the following themes: • Religious figures and sacred texts • Religious Concepts and religious life • Significant and historical developments in religious thought • Christian practices that shape religious identity. The same themes are studied in both the L6 and U6 years, but the work in the U6 year goes into much greater depth and with different aspects considered. The three components are equally weighted. Assessment Method: written examinations ENTRY / APTITUDE REQUIREMENTS Required GCSE subject: English at grade 6 or better. It is not necessary to have RS at GCSE. An interest in ethics, philosophy, development of ideas and an enquiring mind are essential. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION University course admission: A recognised essay-based academic A Level. Career information: Pupils have gone on to be teachers, lawyers, doctors, scientists, actors, and police officers. Exam Board: Eduqas Specification Name: Religious Studies
For further information please contact Mr Porter 36
FRIDAY 8 PROGRAMME
The Friday 8 programme involve activities which pupils carry out from 3:15pm on a Friday. They run until 4:30pm, and sometimes later depending on the nature of the activity each week. The programme is designed to enhance a wide-range of pupils’ ‘softer’ skills, such as leadership, teamwork and communication. During their Middle Fifth and Upper Fifth years at Exeter School, pupils choose to take part in either the Combined Cadet Force (CCF) or the Duke of Edinburgh (DofE) Award. On reaching Sixth Form, they can either choose to stick with this option or choose one of the alternative options they now have open to them. Pupils can also pick CCF or DofE, even if they haven’t taken part in this activity before. Please be aware that numbers for each of these activities are limited, and are looking for pupils to be motivated and committed. Combined Cadet Force (CCF) Exeter School CCF is one of the largest in the region and offers an impressive range of options and activities to the cadets. The aims of the CCF are to develop pupils’ skills of leadership, teamwork and resilience through the structure of a cadet unit where these skills are nurtured and respected. Exeter School CCF is open to all Sixth Form pupils subject to capacity, whether or not they have been a member of the CCF in earlier years. The CCF has three sections reflecting the three services of the British Military. All of them share the common aims but often achieve them in different ways. The RN Section’s training is built around afloat training, the RN syllabus and outdoor expeditions, with cadets getting an impressive range of opportunities to develop their skills. The Army Section’s syllabus is built around basic infantry skills development, offering a range of opportunities such as field craft, weapon handling and survival training to name a few. The RAF Section has a strong ethos of teamwork, leadership, flying and high standards, also developing military skills, which are tested in regular competitions. All the sections enjoy visits to and courses with regular units of the three services. Recently these have involved damage control and firefighting with the RN, overnight and infantry exercises with the Army and flying Grob Tutors, DCCT shooting and Summer Camp with the RAF. Each section has its own unique style but all aim to train the cadets so that by the time they are in the U6 they are responsible for planning and delivering the training and leading the junior cadets, whilst, of course, being mentored by experienced and enthusiastic staff. Working towards becoming a Non Commissioned Officer (NCO), cadets will be trained in instructional techniques and leadership as well as section specific skills and knowledge. All cadets are encouraged to attend one of the camps, which run in the summer holidays, or our Adventure Training which usually runs at Easter. There is also a wide range of opportunities and courses, including leadership courses, run by the MOD at little cost to cadets. Exeter School CCF offers a great range of opportunities to pupils, which are not available elsewhere and enable the cadets to develop useful transferrable skills and a CV, which helps them to stand out. For more information, please see Sqn Ldr Smale, Contingent Commander CCF.
FRIDAY 8 PROGRAMME
Duke of Edinburgh Gold Award The Duke of Edinburgh's Award is universally recognised and widely adopted by university entrance boards and businesses as the best programme for the personal development of young people. The school is determined to make the Award enjoyable, challenging and of the highest quality and the widest reach. The Award has five sections: • Volunteering (helping people in the community) • Skills (covering almost any hobby, skill or interest) • Physical Recreation (sport, dance and fitness) • Expeditions (training for, planning and completing an expedition) • Residential Project All activities should be undertaken in their free (i.e. non-directed) time and are often lunch time, afterschool or weekend activities; pupils at Exeter School are very well placed to take advantage of the extensive range of extra-curricular activities offered. Since the Award is often an extension of a young person's personal interests and activities and has a long completion time, the Award can fit around school or other work quite easily. Some of these activities may require the participants being dropped off and picked up and this is often the case at the start and finish of expeditions. In the words of Bill Turnbull, BBC Presenter and Journalist: "The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award has a great reputation and by achieving a Gold Award it marks them out as being particularly committed individuals. They have not only learnt skills that will benefit themselves, but they have contributed to their wider communities." For more information, please see Mr Schramm The Exonian Editorial Team The Exonian Editorial Team is a small, dedicated group of Sixth Formers who write and edit the annual school magazine The Exonian. They work throughout the school year gathering stories about Junior and Senior School events, trips and activities, writing and editing articles and selecting accompanying photographs. Pupils may also be required to interview visiting speakers and other guests, which requires careful research and advanced planning. The team also have the opportunity to participate in trips and activities relating to the fields of journalism, design and publishing. Being a member of The Exonian Editorial Team is a valuable experience for any pupils who have a wider interest in media, creative writing and graphic design and is a must for those wishing to apply for related courses at degree level. For more information, please see Mr Seaton-Burn.
FRIDAY 8 PROGRAMME
Community Service The Community Service Group gives members of the school the chance to contribute positively in the local community on a regular basis in a wide range of activities. As individuals or pairs, pupils can visit local elderly people, either in their own homes or through some of the residential care homes in St Leonard’s. In addition, Sixth Formers have helped out on a regular basis in local junior schools – this support is often particularly valued after school when our pupils have helped to run clubs or listen to readers. In recent years, pupils have also volunteered at the Hospice, the West of England School for the partially sighted, in charity shops, community shops, churches, church groups, youth clubs, sports clubs, cubs and brownies as well with very worthy individual causes, trusts or establishments. It is normally the case that members of the Community Service group undertake their volunteering in the Friday 8 slot. However, it is not a hard and fast rule, as this time may not suit the individual or group. Each individual case is therefore judged and a time is agreed. If you were to sign up, we would be expecting you to try to find your own placement (although the school does have one or two links that it could suggest to you). In addition to the regular side of volunteering, we organise and expect assistance at a Christmas tea party for in excess of a hundred local senior citizens, which takes place at the end of term in December, and an annual coach outing on the Summer Term Field Day for a smaller number of OAPs. If you decide to sign up, we hope that you will find the experience most rewarding. For more information, please see Mr Wilcock. Sports Leader Award The course aims to build your self-confidence whilst developing your leadership and organisational skills. Based around sport and building knowledge in new sports, we would like you to ‘give back’ to Junior School sports clubs. Year one of the course is spent learning how to coach in a mixture of practical and theory sessions. Content will include teaching styles, methods of practice, guidance and feedback. This will help you develop your own coaching philosophy. You will be expected to spend one hour a week coaching a junior team. Year two is spent learning the role of the coach. This will involve learning about the key principles of leadership, group dynamics, attitudes and attribution theory. The importance of nutrition will also be covered. You will be expected to continue to spend one hour a week coaching a junior team. For more information, please see Mr Mason.
FRIDAY 8 PROGRAMME
Sixth Form Drama Club Affectionately named the ‘The Ex Players’, the 6th Form Drama Club aims to provide the opportunity for pupils to get involved in more drama, to develop their communication skills and potentially provide an opportunity to achieve a qualification. The creative industries are now worth £8m per hour to the UK economy and is one of the fastest growing sectors; this drama club offers the opportunity to explore this world a little more. Verbal communication and teamwork continue to top the list of desired skills by employers. The Drama Club is here to develop and enhance a number of skills, which would be beneficial in the world beyond education. The activity of the club depends on the numbers and make-up of the group – the group has in the past worked towards staging an informal performance as well as producing a radio play, undertaken a writing course where pupils collaborated, drafted and redrafted short plays under the guidance of Mr Brough (Fringe First winner and West End playwright). This year, pupils are delivering drama workshops to local primary schools to help educate 8-10 year olds on ‘Bullying.’ In addition to this they are writing, filming and editing ‘behind the scenes’ documentaries on all the school productions. For more information, please see Mr Brough. Swunk Swunk is a band comprising some of the best musicians in school, some of whom may have never played jazz music before. The band is an invite-only group, curated each summer by the band's director, jazz guitarist and top session musician Mr Bowen. The band typically comprises rhythm section members (piano, guitar, bass and drums) as well as front line players (typically trumpet, saxophone and trombonists) and a vocalist. Close attention is paid to chamber group ensemble techniques, as well as to the vocabulary of improvisation, within a huge variety of styles, ranging far beyond swing and funk, to frequently include Reggae, Bossa Nova and Hip-Hop. Their many regular events throughout the year include workshops and performances at local primary schools on Field Days, participation in a number of the departments' annual concerts, particularly the annual Jazz Concert, as well as one-off gigs that come into the department, both inside school and in the wider community. For more information, please see Mr Tamblyn.
Sixth Form options booklet 2019.indd 7
@ExeterSchoolUK www.exeterschool.org.uk Sixth Form options booklet 2019.indd 8