Knowledge and understanding
The WJEC GCSE in Art and Design is designed to develop your drawing and painting skills as well as exploring other forms of artistic expression such as mixed media, collage and digital art. You will also learn how to hone your analytical skills and how to develop your ideas and your individual, artistic personality. The majority of the work is carried out in class and is therefore informally supervised. Some work which aids the development of the submission (homework, research, gallery visits) may be completed without direct supervision.
Where possible, you will be expected to visit galleries, museums and exhibitions. There will be a school visit to an Art Gallery (London based) as part of the personal portfolio. In addition, you need to explore locations within your environment for research purposes which will assist you in the development of your individual project work. You will work mostly in a sketch-book for each unit. We encourage/recommend that students buy a set of sketching pencils, small paint brush and if possible a set of gouache paints and/or acrylics. A set of oil pastels is also useful. Access to a camera will be necessary for research and development work, as well as access to a laptop.
The acquisition of a visual language and good basic drawing skills forms a desirable part of an Art course and students must be prepared to keep sketchbooks to record observations both in school and at home. You will have the opportunity to explore and experiment with different materials, methods and techniques of image making. Your ideas, the work in progress, as well as any finished pieces of work are the subject of assessment and evaluation.
How will I be assessed?
This course consists of two units:
- Unit 1 Portfolio: 60% of qualification, internally assessed, externally moderated. This unit consists of a major practical project/theme-based portfolio and outcome/s with integrated critical and contextual analysis.
- Unit 2 Externally Set Assignment: 40% of qualification, internally assessed, externally moderated. Students are required to develop a personal response to one of a varied range of stimuli within a specified time constraint.
What will I learn?
Students are required to know and understand how sources inspire the development of ideas, for example, drawing on:
- the work and approaches of artists, craftspeople or designers from contemporary and/or historical contexts, periods, societies and cultures
- contemporary and/or historical environments, situations or issues
- other relevant sources researched by the student in the chosen qualification title and area(s) of study
- the ways in which meanings, ideas and intentions can be communicated through visual and tactile language, using formal elements, including colour, line, shape, form, tone and texture
- the characteristics, properties and effects of using different media, materials, techniques and processes, and the ways in which they can be used in relation to students’ own creative intentions and chosen area(s) of study
- the different purposes, intentions and functions of art, craft and design in a variety of contexts and as appropriate to students’ own work.
Students are required to demonstrate the ability to:
- develop their ideas through investigations informed by selecting and critically analysing sources
- apply an understanding of relevant practices in the creative and cultural industries to their work
- refine their ideas as work progresses through experimenting with media, materials, techniques and processes
- record their ideas, observations, insights and independent judgements, visually and through written annotation, using appropriate specialist vocabulary, as work progresses
- use visual language critically as appropriate to their own creative intentions and chosen area(s) of study through effective and safe use of: media, materials, techniques, processes and technologies
- use drawing skills for different needs and purposes, appropriate to the context, for example, using drawing as part of the development process within each chosen area of study
- realise personal intentions through the sustained application of the creative process.
What could I do next?
A GCSE in Art and Design can lead to multiple avenues including Further Education courses in Art, Graphic Design, Art and Design Foundation courses and careers in design. Following a further education course students could go on to university to study Fine Art, Graphic Design, Illustration, Photography or Animation, to name a few possible routes.