A Levels are a two year qualification
and are the most common
qualification followed by full-time
students between 16 and 18 in the
country. They are available in a wide
range of subjects - there are over 50
courses available at KGV: they
include many subjects familiar to
GCSE students, but also a wide range
of exciting new subjects such as
Psychology, Classical Civilisation and
Geology. A full list of available courses
is given in this Prospectus – it includes
‘academic’ courses (such as
Philosophy and Modern Languages)
and more ‘practical’ or ‘vocational’
courses (such as Art or Business
The majority of A Level students at KGV progress into degree courses at university, but the qualification is also very highly respected by employers for students looking at employment after study and many KGV students follow this route successfully each year.
Since the year 2000, A Levels have been divided into two parts: AS and A2. For most students AS examinations are taken in their first year in the sixth form, and then A2 in the second year: AS and A2 each count for half of the full A level mar.s
AS qualifications have value as ‘stand alone’ qualifications, but A2 acts only as the second half of an A Level.
Most subjects have two modules for AS and two for A2: these modules are mainly assessed by examination, but in some subjects coursework or other assignments also contribute significantly to the final grade.
Successful candidates gain grades from A* to E at A level.
The normal pattern across the country is for students to take 4 (or sometimes 5) subjects at AS level in the first year, then specialise in their 3 (or 4) best subjects at A2 in the second year. Most students will then have one AS and three full A levels (AS + A2) at the end of their course. Students who perform less well in any module are normally able to retake the module at a later date to boost the AS and A level grades achieved – the A level is based on the best four module results!
A Levels allow students to concentrate on the subjects in which they are most interested and in which they can produce their best performance. A vast range of combinations of different subjects is possible and the college will give advice on which combinations are most suitable.