GCSE – Art and Design

Why is Art and Design important?

Art explores creativity and expression. Studying art deals with being able to problem solve and think ‘outside the box’. Art provides a common ground across barriers and prejudices and teaches one to think critically. The course not only involves developing artistic skills through practise and experimentation, but also being able to research both past and contemporary artists to create a rounded knowledge of how art was and is being created.

What is involved in the Art and Design course?

The course has 4 key different assessment objectives, and these are be basis of the content of the course.

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.

These are examined across two components.

How will you be assessed?

The course is assessed through two components. Component 1 consists of coursework which makes up 60% of the course. Component 2 consist of an externally set exam which makes up 40% of the course.

The first component consists of one project where you will work with a chosen theme and will usually involves a gallery visit. The second component consists of an exam paper which is given to students in January of Year 11 and the exam takes place at the end of April.

What can you do with Art and Design in the future?

The subject offers direct routes into university, through the study of Fine Art and can lead to become a practising artist or a teacher. Other routes could lead to working in the theatre, game design, designing webtoons, cake decorating, printmaking, becoming an illustrator, to name but a few.

Art is more than just a creative subject and is seen as more of an interdisciplinary subject that can cross over to other subjects such as the sciences, performing arts, medicine and maths. The course teaches students how to look at things differently, be creative and use critical thinking to be able to analyse, problem solve, research, develop and produce an outcome.

What do you need to do to prepare for the course? (Subject materials, revision guides etc.)

There are many websites such as BBC Bitesize https://www.bbc.co.uk/bitesize that show what GCSE Art and Design entails.

How do I find out more? (E.g. exam board, ref number, hyperlinks)

You can visit the OCR GCSE Art and Design webpage, which can be found here:

Need to know

Choosing art is not just about being creative and being able to draw and paint what you want, but it is about learning how to produce work based upon a brief and then producing your own independent response.

Making art can be very time consuming and to achieve high marks, producing work of a high quality is essential, and so you need to be dedicated to the course.

Student/Staff/Famous Person quote about the subject

Henri Matisse said: “There are 2 things in the painter, the eye and the mind; each of them should aid the other.”

Matisse also said: “Don’t try to be original…..be simple. Be good technically and if there is something in you, it will come out.