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St Peter's School


Art Key Stage 4


Link to Specification

Studying the Pearson Edexcel GCSE Art & Design: Fine Art course at key stage 4 gives students the opportunity to explore a range of activities and in-depth assignments. Students follow broad based thematic projects to develop coursework portfolios through year 10 and in the autumn term of year 11. They will experiment with different media in order to explore their strengths and preferences. Weekly classwork and homework tasks are set to develop their understanding of how to meet the four assessment criteria taking the form of sketchbook work, larger scale pieces and final pieces.  Students are required to work under at least two disciplines from painting & drawing, printmaking and sculpture. There is a strong emphasis within the assessment criteria to develop critical analysis skills alongside practical work, evidence of observational drawing skills and written annotation are particularly important. The aim of the course is for all students to develop their visual language skills and for students to build a comprehensive portfolio of work to progress to further courses or employment.

The course consists of: Component1, Personal Portfolio - 60% (Internally set and marked; assessed through controlled assessment) and Component 2, Externally Set Assignment: 40% (Externally set theme and internally marked). Component 2 involves students preparing for about 12 school weeks to resource, experiment, develop and plan a final outcome to be completed over sustained period on the exam day, the preparation and the final exam piece are integral to Component 2.

Students receive written and verbal feedback throughout the course as they develop their portfolios. Formative comments are matched against the four assessment criteria. Summative assessments will give students GCSE grades and written feedback. Students are encouraged to set and review personal targets in response to feedback during the development of their work. The body of coursework has a final grading at the end of the course. Each unit is assessed separately out of 72 marks. All four Assessment Objectives must be covered for each project

The Assessment Objectives are interrelated ensuring full coverage across the personal portfolio and Externally Set Assignment units:

AO1 Develop ideas through investigations, demonstrating critical understanding of sources

AO2 Refine work by exploring ideas, selecting and experimenting with appropriate media, materials, techniques and processes

AO3 Record ideas, observations and insights relevant to intentions as work progresses

AO4 Present a personal and meaningful response that realises intentions and demonstrates understanding of visual language


The longer you look at an object, the more abstract it becomes, and, ironically, the more real.

Lucian Freud

Reflection 1985
(Self Portrait) Lucian Freud

Narcissus 1948
Lucian Freud

I've always wanted to create drama in my pictures, which is why I paint people. It's people who have brought drama to pictures from the beginning. The simplest human gestures tell stories.

Lucian Freud 


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