A Level Sociology

Sociology is a fascinating way of trying to understand our complex and constantly changing society.

Sociology is not about simply presenting facts about society. Instead it is about different interpretations of those facts and explanations for why they occur.

Sociologists seek to identify patterns and relationships between different parts of society and seek to establish meaning through the study of evidence. Sociology is also concerned with ideas and theories about the nature of society and the individuals in it. A key element of sociology is an attempt to understand out identities and the cultures we live in.

Sociology is an inherently interesting subject because it is about all of us and our place in society. It helps you to think beyond the obvious and it helps you to think differently about the world.

A Level Psychology

Why study this subject?

Psychology is the scientific study of mind and behaviour, applied to both humans and animals.

As Psychology considers the many varied factors that affect mind and behaviour it is a biological science, a cognitive science and a social science. Psychologists research brain structure and function, mental processes, such as memory, thinking and reasoning, and also social factors such as how other people influence us. This means that it is the ideal bridging subject between arts and sciences.

The scientific and statistical elements of the subject mean it complements the study of Mathematics and the natural sciences, whereas the requirement to write essays and adopt an analytical and evaluative approach appeals to humanities students. Psychology therefore develops a range of skills suitable for further academic study in almost any subject and is highly regarded by universities.

It is particularly useful for health related degree courses and any professions which involve working closely with people – a number of medical schools actively encourage students to choose Psychology as their third A Level.

A Level Physics

Why study this subject?

Physics is a stimulating and challenging subject which our students find very interesting and rewarding. If you study it, you will start to have a better understanding of the universe around you, including the behaviour of atoms and sub-atomic particles such as quarks. You will also understand the principles of physics involved in many of the technological devices used in our lives.

A Level Physics is an important qualification for many careers. A number of our students go on to do a Physics or Physics-related degree such as Engineering or Electronics which may lead to a career in research and development at university or in industry. A Level Physics is essential for these subjects, as is A Level Mathematics. There are other degrees where Physics is useful but not essential such as Medicine or Chemistry. However, even if you choose a career which does not need Physics A Level, the qualification is very highly regarded by universities and employers because you will develop valuable mathematical and problem solving skills on the A Level course.

At Greenhead we have six experienced and well qualified teachers who have proven examination success. Students give us high marks for the quality of teaching and for the quality of support that we offer to them. We are very keen to help students with difficulties! Students here have the opportunity to do many extension activities such as Engineering Projects, Further Physics classes or visits to universities for masterclasses.

A Level Physical Education

Why study this subject?

In PE you will cover a range of sporting topics in a fun, interesting and challenging way. The subject is taught by expert staff who annually achieve excellent results. Each teacher delivers a specialist subject area using a range of teaching styles, offering variety to the course. You will never find PE boring! Staff in the department have current exam board involvement, which gives them an insight into the subject requirements and further enhances your results.

A Level Philosophy, Religion and Ethics

About the Department

The department consists of two qualified, highly committed and enthusiastic teachers: Simon Barratt and Ian Kennedy. There are about 150 students studying A Level. The A Level course at Greenhead covers three main areas of study: Philosophy of Religion; Ethics; and Buddhism. Many of our students go on to study Philosophy related courses at top universities including Oxford and Cambridge.

Why study this subject?

Do you enjoy thinking about life’s big questions? For instance:

  • Ethics. What is the nature of good? And what does it mean to live a good life? How do we decide what is right on issues such as euthanasia in medical ethics, human rights, sexual ethics e.g. what is the purpose of sex?
  • Metaphysics. What is the nature of reality? Does God exist? If there is a God, why does he allow so much evil and suffering? Do humans have free will? Is the mind independent from the body? Is there life after death?
  • Epistemology. What is knowledge, and what distinguishes it from mere belief or opinion? eg. how do we know that our ideas about what is morally good are true? What is truth?
  • Language. How is it that language expresses meaning? How it is that language comes to refer to the world? Is it possible to use language to talk about God?
  • Politics and Law. How should society be organised? What is justice? What are ‘rights’?’ etc.
  • Science. What is science, and how does it challenge religious belief?

If you have an enquiring mind and enjoy philosophical debate and are interested in what some of the world’s greatest thinkers, scientists and religions have to say, then this is definitely the right subject for you! The course includes educational visits to Philosophy and ethics conferences, places of Buddhist interest as well as a residential trip to London. In the last two years, popular speakers in the field of Philosophy, such as Dr Peter Vardy and Dr Stephen Law have visited College and given revision conferences for us.

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A Level Music Technology

Why study this subject?

Music Technology is a diverse subject area offering students the opportunity to develop skills in composition, production, sequencing and recording. Students have access to 35 iMac workstations across two well equipped Mac suites, supporting Logic Pro and Ableton Live. They will also have access to the recording studio and two separate post-production spaces.

On the course, you will develop your skills in composition, production, sequencing and recording, along with improving your IT skills, your communication skills, your attention to musical detail and your ability to create and generate musical ideas.

The course is varied and gives a thorough grounding in music production, technology-based music and acoustics. You will produce two pieces of non-examined assessment work. The first piece of work is a recording, for which you will choose a song, plan recording sessions, set up microphones, record performers and then spend time mixing and producing in class. The second is a technology-based composition, where you will blend synthesis, sampling and creative effects with the musical elements to produce a 3 minute piece of work. Alongside your practical work, you will study a variety of theoretical topics, from capture of sound to acoustics, and from effects and processing to mastering. These will be assessed via two exam papers in the summer of Year 13; assessing your listening, analysing and producing skills.

Which Music course should I choose?

BTEC Level 3 Music Performance (Pearson)

Why study this subject?

BTEC Music Performance allows you to develop practical and industry skills whilst also improving your music theory. The BTEC course is equivalent to one full A Level. The course is widely accepted for progression onto degree level qualifications in music.

As part of the course, you will have the opportunity to perform both as a soloist and as part of an ensemble in a variety of situations. If you enjoy performing and want to focus on the more contemporary / popular side of music and performance – this is the course for you.

Which Music course should I choose?

A Level Music (EDUQAS)

Why study this subject?

A Level Music is an exciting, dynamic and challenging course that will develop your performance, composition and analytical skills to a new and exciting level. The course follows a relatively traditional path that you might be familiar with if you’ve studied Music at GCSE, focusing on performance, composition and analysis of works from the western classical tradition through to more contemporary twentieth century classical music.

At college, academic music teaching is combined with an intensive musical programme of high quality and consistently demanding public performances. The department’s ensembles have been recognised at The National Festival of Music for Youth as well as maintaining a high profile within the local community.

Which Music course should I choose?

A Levels in Modern Languages

We offer A Levels in French, German and Spanish. 

We also offer A Level Spanish (Ab Initio), where students do not need to have previously studied GCSE Spanish to study this course. It is an intensive beginners course that requires 6 hours of study per week and equates to one full A Level. Students who would like to do this should apply for Spanish in the normal way and will be identified at interview.

Why study these subjects?

  • You enjoy communicating with others
  • You want to learn more about other cultures, including films, TV and literature
  • You would like to work abroad
  • You wish to increase your employability: language specialists usually get preference over other candidates of identical ability who don’t have a language
  • You want to take part in a foreign trip: the department organises trips to France, Germany and Spain
  • You intend to take a year out before going to university and do some volunteer work in a foreign country Scientists, medics and engineers need languages: they travel and work throughout the world
  • Whatever you decide to do as a career, it is highly likely that you will one day find yourself working for a multinational company or for a firm with connections abroad: in France, Canada, Germany, Spain, Latin America and even Africa
  • Having knowledge of a foreign country and its culture, will enable you to interact effectively abroad. This is a skill that prospective employers are actively looking for
  • The demand by companies for executives, management, scientists and sales people to be multilingual is ever increasing
  • Employers say they want people with skills such as engineering, law, chemistry etc who can also speak a foreign language
  • Numerous universities offer combined courses, which means you can study two subjects: your foreign language and a completely different subject, such as Engineering, History, etc

Find out more about Spanish Ab Initio

WJEC Level 3 Medical Science

Why study this subject?

Medical Science is taught by a team of dedicated and highly qualified biology teachers. We offer a supportive and encouraging environment to let you achieve to the best of your ability.

The WJEC Level 3 Medical Science is different from A Level courses offered at Greenhead because the emphasis is just as much about developing your skills as it is about gaining knowledge. Equivalent to a full A Level, graded A* – E, and awarded the same UCAS points, this course will provide you with the skills and knowledge to enter careers in the Applied Science and Healthcare sectors.

Medical Science is the science of dealing with the maintenance of health and the prevention and treatment of diseases. This new Level 3 Diploma in Medical Science is for students who are interested in careers related to healthcare and medical research.

Medical scientists are at the forefront of healthcare services, as they are vital in the diagnosis of disease, determining the effectiveness of treatments and searching for new cures.