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Photography AS / A Level

Photography is one of the most important and influential means of modern communication. The AS/A Level course will develop your creative, intellectual and practical skills so you will be able to use your camera to express your own ideas effectively.

Exam Board: AQA

STARTS IN SEPTEMBER

  • What will I study and learn?

    Practical assignments will be set, initially to enable you to learn the techniques of photography. As the course progresses, projects will cover all the main applications of photography including:

    • Darkroom techniques
    • Portraiture using studio lighting
    • Documentary
    • Fashion
    • Landscape
    • Experimental movement techniques

    These will be supported with your own research into existing images, which will enable you to place your work into a wider cultural situation.


    Throughout the course you will be encouraged to produce photographs which convey your own particular needs and interests.


    Lectures will be given to teach the practical and contextual studies of photography. These will form the basis of the practical work you will undertake in either our very well-equipped photographic studios or on location. As part of the course, you will also produce images in colour and monochrome using conventional darkroom and digital techniques. Throughout the course you will need to keep workbooks demonstrating your research and clarifying how your ideas have been developed. To assist you in this there will be a number of group visits to exhibitions whenever possible.

  • How is the course assessed?

    The course will be assessed through exams and coursework.

  • What courses would combine well with this course?

    The course is very broad and integrates practical and academic work. It therefore combines well with any subject.

  • What skills will I need for the course?

    We expect you to show evidence of visual sensitivity through a collection of your own photographs. We do not recommend that this course is taken with more than one other art-based subject because of the amount of practical coursework required.


    You will need the initiative and self-motivation to undertake research and photography - often in your own time. Furthermore you will need to develop your pictures using chemicals in a darkroom.

  • What formal entry requirements will I need?

    You will need an average GCSE points score of 5 including GCSE English at grade 5 and Art at grade C with a proven interest in photography.

    Points calculation

    The average points score for entry to an A Level programme will be calculated using your 8 best GCSEs OR 6 GCSEs plus 1 technical qualification (equivalent to a maximum of 2 GCSEs and 10 points).

    From 2017 English Language, English Literature and Mathematics GCSE will be graded numerically (1 – 9. Grade 5 = a good grade C, grade 6 = grade B and grade 7 = grade A).

    To work out your average and find out more information, please see our Entry Requirements page.

  • What could the course lead to in higher education or careers?

    Studying an A Level in Photography as part of a full-time A Level programme could lead on to a wide variety of degree subjects at university or to an art and design degree via a one-year full time pre-BA foundation course in art and design.

  • Are there any costs involved?

    You will need a digital camera, preferably a Digital Single Lens Reflex (DSLR) which can be bought for around £350. We can give you advice on buying a DSLR camera.


    It will be necessary to visit exhibitions and, although travelling costs will be required, entry to galleries is often free.


    It will also be necessary to buy a starter pack, costing £65 for AS students, at the beginning of the course. In addition to this, you will be required to buy sketchbooks and pay for digital printing as the course progresses.

To Apply or Enquire

If you are interested in applying please fill out an application form. If you require more information please do not hesitate in sending us your queries via our enquiry form. We will endeavour to get back to you as soon as possible.

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