The new AQA Music A Level is a rigorous course with broad appeal that is designed to suit potential University or Conservatoire students, as well as engaging those who simply enjoy music. 

What will I study?

All girls will have the opportunity to take AS and A2 in this subject.

The subject content is divided into three components: Appraising Music; Performance & Composition.

How will I be assessed?

AS level
Appraising Music (40% of AS): Exam paper with listening and written questions using excerpts of music:
Performing Music (marked externally by AQA examiners) (30% of AS): Solo and/or ensemble performing as an instrumentalist and/or vocalist (50 marks).
Composing Music (marked externally by AQA examiners) (30% of AS).

A2 level
Exam paper with listening and written questions using excerpts of music (40% of A Level)
Performing Music (marked externally by AQA examiners) (35% of A Level)
Composing Music (marked externally by AQA examiners) (25% of A Level).

Desirable requirements

You should have a real love of and interest in music, with a performing standard of at least Grade 5 (you do not need to have taken the exam), and a commitment to be involved in at least one extra-curricular activity.  Grade A at GCSE is desirable together with Grade 5 theory, but neither is essential.

How will I study?

The course is taught by Girls’ Division staff, but there are close links with the Boys’ Division for extra-curricular music. The course is divided across teaching staff to utilise the full range of expertise available.

Where will it lead?

A Level music can lead to a degree course in Music at University, or entrance to a Conservatoire to focus on musical performance. Music A Level sits well within a portfolio of subjects as it enables students to develop such a broad range of contrasting skills, including detailed analysis, essay writing and critical listening.


“My AS Level subjects are Music, French, Latin and History. The Sixth Form has been a challenging but really enjoyable year, and I have learned to balance my subjects well as the year has gone on.  I have loved studying all my subjects but particularly enjoyed my AS Music course. There has been a large jump from GCSE to A level but, if you really enjoy the subject and put hard work in, it becomes much more fun and easier to study. The emphasis at A Level is much more on performance and, as someone who adores this aspect, it has been brilliant year preparing pieces to enter in for a recording and other such grades for Music. As someone with a passion to study Music at university, it has really helped me develop and prepare for conservatoire or university applications with added help in theory and practical aspects.”