Option Subject – Examination Board used OCR
Tiers available: only one tier available
What will I learn on this GCSE course?
The aims of the new GCSE Examination are to:
- Stimulate the student's interest and enjoyment of music through studying a broad, coherent and satisfying course of study.
- Develop performance skills both solo and in ensemble.
- Enable the evaluation of the student's own and others' music.
- Develop an understanding and appreciation of a range of different types of music.
- Develop broader critical and creative thinking, aesthetic sensitivity, emotional awareness, cultural understanding, self-discipline, self-confidence and self-motivation.
What do I need to know or be able to do before taking this course?
Students should have achieved Grade 3 instrumental standard and should have aknowledge of standard or chord notation. These skills could be developed during the course, but this would addsignificantly to the workload required for the first unit.
What will each GCSE unit consist of?
Unit B351: Integrated Tasks 30%
This involves a performance on the principal instrument with a commentary on the context, technical requirements, quality of performance and a brief for a linked composition. This will be recorded and music technology could be used.
A composition based on the above brief will also be undertaken. This could be a solo or ensemble.
Unit B352: Practical Portfolio 30%
This will contain a recording of a group performance, a further composition or arrangement featuring a group of players which should either be a piece of dance or mood music such as film or programme music. Finally, the portfolio should contain a log and evaluation of the composition or arrangement.
Unit B353: Creative task 15%
In this timed task, the student will develop a short piece from a stimulus (rhythm, note row, set of chords, words or a sequence of events for mood music) which will be communicated either by writing it down, or by performing.
Unit B354: Listening Test 25%
This is a written paper (more like a serious quiz) with CD, assessing knowledge gained from Areas of Study 2, 3 and 4.
What are the areas of study involved in this course?
1: My Music
This is about developing a real understanding of music which the students perform, putting the piece into a historical/cultural context, being aware of the technical demands and understanding the role of an instrument in ensemble.
2: Shared Music
This is concerned with an understanding of the relationships and roles of voices and instruments when playing together.
3: Dance Music
We will study the characteristics and historical context of: Waltz, Tango and Salsa, Line Dancing, Bhangra, Disco and Club Dancing.
4: Descriptive Music
Students will learn about descriptive music, including “Film Music” and how composers have used the genre to express a story, a mood or emotion as well as drama and action.
These four areas provide a really broad and interesting range of music. If music is important to you and you want to expand your performing skills and knowledge, this course will prove to be both enjoyable and challenging.