• AS Music is ideal for the sixth-form musician who has a genuine interest in the subject and enjoys performing, as a soloist or as part of an ensemble, ideally to at least Grade 6 standard. The Edexcel specification is designed to allow candidates to study music in an integrated way as a practical, intellectual and creative subject. Candidates need not necessarily have taken GCSE Music – though the majority will have - and an understanding of music theory to Grade 5 level is strongly recommended. It is also important that students are involved in musical activities. Each music group at AS three teachers. There are three parts to AS Music – Component 1: Performing Music, Component 2: Composing and Component 3: Appraising.

    Component 1: Performing Music (30% of AS) This unit gives students the opportunities to perform as soloists and/or as part of an ensemble. Teachers and students can choose music in any style. Any instrument(s) and/or voice(s) are acceptable as part of an assessed performance. A minimum of 6 minutes of music (notated and/or improvised) is required for submission. Grade 6 is regarded as the 'Standard' level of difficulty for AS Music.

    Component 2: Composing (30% of AS) This unit encourages students to develop their composition skills leading to the creation of a two compositions. One is composed in response to a chosen brief, from a list of six issued by Edexcel. The other can be a free composition, or another composition relating to the briefs. The compositions need to be at least 2 minutes each in duration, with a minimum combined duration of 4½ minutes.

    Component 3: Appraising (40% of AS) This unit focuses on listening to and 'understanding' a range of set works from an anthology, divided in to six Areas of Study: Vocal Music, Instrumental Music, Music for Film, Popular Music and Jazz, Fusions and New Directions – something for everyone! As well as getting to know the various composition techniques used in the set works, students develop the ability to apply this understanding to appraisal of unfamiliar music ('wider listening') that has some connection to the set works. This understanding can also feed in to the composition work for Component 2. Assessment of Component 3 takes the form of a 90-minute written examination paper.

  • Candidates are taught skills of performance (both solo and ensemble), composition, arranging, analysis and aural perception.

  • There is a great deal of choice regarding the music performed and the style of composition undertaken.

  • All three components are externally assessed. Component 3 takes the form of a 90-minute written examination paper.

  • Many candidates choose to study music further, either in a university or conservatoire, but Music is equally valid as a supporting AS or A Level qualification, most commonly with Modern Languages, English or Mathematics and a Science. In most years Latymer students go on to study Music at Oxford or Cambridge, or other leading universities or conservatoires, while some choose to combine music with another subject (e.g. a language).