Art GCSE enables students to explore art in a way that is personally relevant to them. It is not just about being able to draw or paint, it is about creativity and how that is relevant in our world today.

The new specification introduced in 2016 does require evidence of some drawing skill; however, this does not mean naturalistic drawing alone. This objective can be met through thumbnail drawings and sketches. These collected together, along with mood boards, mind maps, artist research sheets and finished pieces, will form a portfolio (which must contain at least one finished project).

In lessons, there will be many opportunities to try out new techniques and materials. Students will also be introduced to (and then asked to reflect on) the work of other artists. Pupils will find that these skills of individual research and recording are transferable to other subjects.

A final project (externally set task) will reflect the values, enthusiasms and skills that each student has developed through the course. Assessment for the course allows 60% for the portfolio and 40% for the externally set task. Studying Art gives students a time to express themselves, they will do best when they are able to work independently, inspired to follow their own ideas.

For some students, the Arts Award (Bronze or Silver) may be an alternative to the GCSE and could run alongside this.