Entry requirements

Merit in Level 2 Art or Design Technology, or evidence of skill in designing and making in other subjects. 


However, we will consider applications from students who did not follow one of these courses in KS4. In these cases, we will interview candidates and ask that a portfolio of work be brought along to support their application.


What will I study

Students will be introduced to a variety of experiences that explore a range of photographic media, techniques and processes. They will be made aware of both traditional and new technologies.


Students are required to work in one or more area(s) of photography, such as those listed below. They may explore overlapping areas and combinations of areas:

  • Portraiture
  • Landscape photography (working from the urban, rural and/or coastal environment)
  • Still life photography (working from objects or from the natural world)
  • Documentary photography, photojournalism
  • Fashion photography
  • Experimental imagery
  • Multimedia
  • Photographic installation
  • Moving image (video, film, animation).


How will I be assessed?

Coursework is worth 60% of your overall A2 grade and the externally set assignment is worth 40%. Your work will be formally assessed every 4 - 6 weeks using the AQA marking grid. You will have regular verbal and written feedback in the form of tutorials in lessons and opportunities to self and peer assess your work.

Is this subject for me?

An A-level photography student needs to be ambitious, creative, motivated and a risk taker. You need to have a passion for photography and be focused and open minded about your studies. 

You should have underlying photographic skills and be competent on computer programs such as Photoshop and you should also have good basic drawing and recording skills as drawing is still a requirement of the course. 

A good photographer should always be on the lookout for that perfect shot and although it’s not convenient to have a camera with you at all times a good photography student should use things like their phones to capture images when they don’t have their camera. 

Creating a photographic portfolio takes a long time so students need to have excellent time management skills and commitment to their craft. The majority of the course is self directed study so they also need to be independent workers.

Where can this lead me?

Northbrook College run a number courses relevant to students who are interested in a career in photography. There is the usual art, design and media one year foundation course which would lead onto a moving image and photography degree.

The University of Brighton runs a wide variety of photography and digital media degrees which have an international reputation. Entry to these courses is usually by interview and portfolio submission. An A-level photography course will enable you to produce a portfolio to take to interview and give you an excellent grounding in art and design knowledge, skills and techniques.

There are numerous photography careers including:

  • Photojournalist
  • Fashion Photographer
  • Wedding Photographer 
  • Digital Artist
  • Wildlife Photographer
  • Fine Art Photographer 
  • Medical Photographer 
  • Further Education Teacher and
  • Higher Education Lecturer

What else is there?

We offer a range of experiences on the A-level course. We have run workshops with local photographers and trips up to London. There are also opportunities to visit further educational colleges to see what life is like on the art foundation course.

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