Art and Design

Art and Design

Pupils Working in the Art Department

Art & Design qualifications challenge students to develop their observational skills and aesthetic appreciation. Investigation, experimentation and self-expression are prized at all levels, and this ethos helps students as they learn how to express their inner-most feelings and perceptions visually.

Art and Design Staff

Mrs. A Hill (Head of Department)

Mr. J Carberry (Ceramics specialist)

Mr. P Clarke (Pastoral Learning Leader)

Mrs. E Rooney (Examinations officer)

Mrs. K Teeney

Mrs. G McDermont

Mr. J Donovon


The work initiated in primary schools will be developed and enhanced in more complex and comprehensive ways.  It will be personal and self-directed, working from ideas, images and the imagination as well as from direct observation, indirect research and relevant Art and design vocabulary.

All Key stage three students will have homework set every month, is completed in their sketchbook.

Year 8 pupils follow a programme of work with portraits being the core theme. The theme is expressed through various media and materials. Students have 2 periods per week of Art and Design.

In Year 9 the theme of animals in art is used in a local and international setting. Students will be given the opportunity to extend their skills further in drawing and graphic, printmaking, ceramics, construction as well as painting.  The contextual references for this year group include the Eiffel Tower and Belfast City Hall.

Year 10 then broadens out to the environment where students once again are extending not only their skills but also their own personal view of their inner world as well as the external world.  We are preparing students to consider GCSE level and that the three years have created a visual vocabulary which they can further add to at a higher level.  All students complete an ICT accreditation task.

The development of Literacy and Numeracy skills in Art is a key focus as well as ongoing literacy tasks throughout the three years.  We feel this offers a very good sounding board to take our subject into both GCSE and A level.


This specification is made up of two units:

  • Unit 1: The Core Portfolio (Controlled Assessment); and
  • Unit 2: Working to a Stimulus.

Students must complete both Unit 1 and Unit 2.

In Unit 1, which is worth 60 percent of the final award, students present a portfolio of work. In the portfolio they should explore a wide range of the core skills of visual language, media, materials, techniques and new technology. Work in the portfolio should:

  • be edited to show the breadth, depth and quality of experience in art and design that students have gained over the two year course;
  • show that students have experience of at least two different creative media;
  • address each of the four Assessment Objectives; and
  • include one task that has been developed to a final outcome.

The portfolio presented for assessment should not exceed 20 A2 sheets (or equivalent).

Unit 2 is worth 40 percent of the final award. It is assessed through an externally set exam called Working to a Stimulus. The exam gives students an opportunity to investigate and develop their ideas creatively in response to a stimulus paper. Each of the four Assessment Objectives should be addressed in the work presented for Unit 2.

The Unit 2 work presented for assessment should not exceed 10 A2 sheets (or equivalent) plus a final outcome.

A Level

Through studying GCE Art and Design, students have opportunities to:

  • develop an interest in and enthusiasm for art, craft and design;
  • gain knowledge and understanding of art, craft, design and media (including technologies) in contemporary and past cultures;
  • gain experience in working in a broad range of media (including traditional and new media and technologies);
  • gain an awareness of different roles, functions, audiences and consumers of art, craft and design practice; and
  • develop and enhance their creative, intellectual and artistic abilities.

The revised GCE Art and Design specification is available at two levels: AS and A2. Students can take the AS course as a final qualification or as the first half of the A Level qualification. Students who wish to obtain a full A level qualification must also complete the second half of the course, which is referred to as A2.

The course is comprised of four units: two at AS level and two at A2 level. These are listed below:

AS 1: Coursework Portfolio
AS 2: Externally Set Assignment
A2 1: Personal Investigation
A2 2: Externally Set Assignment


Art Resources

Photos for Students | Download as zip

Resources for Students | Download as zip

2016 ESA GCSE Art resources