GCSE Music – 2 hours a week
Students taking this course should have a reasonable understanding of notation and be either an instrumentalist or a good singer.
There are 5 main Areas of Study based upon the musical elements:
- Rhythm and Metre
- Harmony and Tonality
- Melody and Texture
- Timbre and Dynamics
- Structure and Form
And these will be explored through 3 different strands:
- The Western Classical Tradition
- Popular Music of the 20th and 21st Centuries
- World Music
There are 4 Units:
Unit 1 – Listen to and Appraising Music – 80 marks, worth 20% of total marks
- A final listening and written exam lasting one hour.
- Questions will cover all 5 areas of study, through the three main strands listed below.
Unit 2 – Composing and Appraising – 40 marks, worth 20% of total marks
- Compose a piece of music linked to TWO OR MORE of the areas of study and also ONE of the three strands (which will be decided by AQA Board).
- Students must submit a recording (CD) and a score of the composition.
- Students MUST complete their composition work INSIDE school, and are allowed 20 hours supervised time.
- In addition pupils will also complete an Appraisal Booklet to accompany their composition within lesson time, under teacher supervision over 2 hours.
Unit 3 – Performing Music – 60 marks, worth 40% of total marks
- Performance of TWO pieces: a SOLO and ENSEMBLE piece.
- The highest expected standard is Grade 5.
- The performer must make sure that the piece performed is STYLISTICALLY correct.
- Both pieces will be recorded and assessed.
Unit 4 – Composing Music – 30 marks, 20% of total marks
- Compose a piece of music linked to TWO OR MORE of the areas of study, this exercise is a FREESTYLE composition, but it must be DIFFERENT to the Unit 1 composition.
- Students MUST complete their composition work INSIDE school, and are allowed 25 hours of supervised time.