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An award winning sixth-form college in the heart of Central London offering a wide range of GCSE and A-Level courses

The quality of the curriculum, teaching and learners' achievements is excellent

Albemarle Independent Private College in Central London

Photography (PEARSON)

A Level Course Outline

"I always wanted to be a photographer. But I never dreamed I would be having this much fun. I imagined something much less elusive, much more mundane". - Lee Friedlander

Who Should Study Photography at A Level


Any photographer with a core understanding of the medium, interested in furthering visual, technical, cognitive and analytical skills. At A level the subject continues to mirror the personality of the photographer. Individual projects, bespoke to each student are strongly encouraged.

What will you find challenging?

The level of expectancy shifts from AS to A level along with the grade boundaries, increasing the difficulty of achieving excellence at A level. Stronger evidence of technical, aesthetic and critical skills are required as is a more sophisticated overall presentation. However if you have a genuine interest in the subject and a core grounding in photography then you will excel at this level.

What Skills Will You Develop Studying A Level Photography?

Students will reinforce visual language skills and refine technical understanding -developing a sophisticated critique of imagery via independent decision-making.

Learning photography provides a host of transferable skills; personal, professional and technical.

Photography (EDX) A Level Specification

Unit One
Internally set and marked, externally moderated.
60% of A level qualification
Available in June

Photography Course Work

  • supporting studies
  • work journal(s)
  • final presentation in response to chosen theme e.g. portfolio prints, artists book, exhibition installation.
  • Personal study, 1000-3000 word essay directly relating to project theme.

Unit Two
Internally set and marked, externally moderated.
40% of A Level qualification
Available in June

Externally Set Assessment

  • supporting studies
  • work journal(s)
  • preparatory studies
  • final presentation in response to chosen theme e.g. portfolio prints, artists book, exhibition installation.
  • Produced in 8 hours under controlled exam conditions.

Structure of the Course
This course will be taught for 6x 1hour lessons per week. Homework will consist of practical photography and written sketchbook work. As students are encouraged to undertake bespoke projects, homework is usually practical but will also involve annotation of sketchbooks and relevant contextual research. All this should be of the student's choice and interest. Weekly deadlines are set.

Core Textbook
The Genius of Photography - Gerry Badger
ISBN-10: 1844006093

The Genius of Photography Book

Further Reading
'On Photography' - Susan Sontag
ISBN-13: 978-0141187167

'Camera Lucida' - Roland Barthes
ISBN-10: 0374521344