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Farlingaye High School


Music option


Music for Curriculum

Exam Board

Music A Level:
Music Tecnhology A Level:

Music GCSE:

BTEC Tech in Music Practice:

Key Stage 3

The Music Department has just completed a KS3 Audit and has adopted a new assessment policy that involves formal and informal assessment processes.  At KS3, we have a concept based scheme of work that allows students to build upon their skills in a logical and progressive way.  The focus is on practical work, incorporating compositional and performance opportunities to ensure that students have a smooth transition to GCSE should they wish to take it.  Listening work supports our schemes of work, see table of long-term planning.


Upper school choir

At KS4 students follow the Edexcel syllabus.  The syllabus looks at composition and listening through four areas of study:  repetition and contrast of western music 1600-1899; new directions in classical music 1900 to the present day; Britpop and Dance music; and World Music.


This is an exciting new course in which you will be Performing, Composing and understanding music, using your instrument or voice, and/or an advanced digital audio workstation (DAW) like Logic Pro.


The BTEC Tech Award in Music Practice is a practical introduction to life and work in the industry. Students will develop skills such as teamwork, leadership and communication. They will develop and present music to a brief and analyse, evaluate and enhance their learning. Students will learn about various music products, develop valuable skills and techniques in music creation, performance and production as well as exploring potential careers in the music industry. BTEC Tech awards are designed to lead to further study such as A Levels in Music Technology or Music. They are the same value as a GCSE.

A Level

Music BTec

 At AS/A2 level we follow the Edexcel syllabus.






Qualification type:

A Level


Entry criteria (GCSE grades):

Music 5 and performance grade level 6


Subject description:

The course is based around the elements Performance, Composition and Appraising. For students who have studied and enjoyed GCSE Music then this is a natural progression to develop musicianship skills further. Students who opt for A Level would be expected to be involved in the extra-curricular life of the department. The course combines well with Music Technology.


Units studied:

Performing - Students have to perform (either solo and/or ensemble) for a minimum of eight minutes at A Level.


Composing - Students must compose two pieces one in response to the free choice brief/free composition and one in response to a brief assessing technique. The two pieces must have a combined duration of at least six minutes at A Level.


Appraising - The content of musical contexts and musical language is taught through the context of six areas of study.


How the course is assessed:

Performing will be marked as a continuous recital and the compositions marked according to the mark scheme. There will be a two-hour listening exam at the end of the course.


Post-18 opportunities:

There are increasing opportunities for musicians – as a professional or session musician, composing in various genres e.g. film, popular or classical, sound engineering, sound design or teaching/lecturing. There are a variety of courses available looking  at various aspects and specialisms within music.


Teacher responsible:   Ms G Martino.

Music Technology





Qualification type:

A Level


Entry criteria (GCSE grades):

Students should demonstrate a strong practical interest in the subject, as a performer, a composer, or technologist.  Students do not have to have taken Music at GCSE.


Subject description:

Music technology is about composing or creating music and sounds through a creative use of electronic hardware and computer software.  It is also about knowing how the technology works and how it has developed over time.  This is a new specification that emphasises the practical elements of music technology;  audio recording and composing music at a Digital Audio Workstation.  There is no crossover between this and Music A Level and the two subjects complement each other.  Performance skills are not assessed, and you don't need to be a 'note reader', but you do need good aural discrimination.  Skills learned here are applicable both musically and technically in many areas of the media and entertainment industry.


Units studied:

Component 1 - Multi-track recording (externally assessed coursework, 20%)

• Production tools and techniques to capture, edit, process and mix an audio recording.

Component 2 - Technology-based composition

(externally assessed coursework, 20%)

• Creating, editing, manipulating and structuring sounds to produce a composition to a brief.

Component 3 - Listening & Analysing

(written examination, 25%).

• Exam based on listening to a range of songs recorded from the 1950s onwards.

• Knowledge and understanding of recording and production techniques and principles.

• Knowledge of the development of technology from the 1930s.


Component 4 - Producing & Analysing

(written/practical examination, 35%)

• Practical examination using Logic to create, edit and   master a mix.

• Knowledge and understanding of editing, mixing and production techniques.


Areas of study:

1: Recording and production techniques for both corrective and creative purposes.

2: Principles of sound and audio technology.

3: The development of recording and production technology.


How the course is assessed:

Two externally assessed exams (60%) and two non-examined assessment components (coursework, 40%).


Post-18 opportunities:

There are many opportunities for the creative music technologist: arranging and composing for TV or film; sound design for computer games; software coding; acoustic design; sound engineer; record producer; broadcaster; and the diverse range of Music Technology degree courses.


Teacher responsible:  Mr R Picton

Instrumental Tuition

There are 12 peripatetic teachers who teach over 300 students in a week.   Teachers include woodwind (including saxophone and a double reed specialist), strings, brass, acoustic guitar and electric guitar and a drum/percussion teacher.   We continue to develop our peripatetic provision for students and have waiting lists for most instrumental lessons.  We try to ensure that students who would like lessons are accommodated.  We work hard to provide smooth transition between lessons in primary through to tuition at Farlingaye.