A Levels are divided into two types of qualification: AS levels and A2 level. In some subjects, AS can be taken in the first year as a separate qualification, and then students can choose, if they wish, to continue the subject on into ‘A2’ (the second year of the course) to gain an A Level. Under this old style, ‘legacy’ A Level, both AS and A2 comprise two units of assessment, and together the add up to a full A Level qualification. Students can, if they wish, ‘cash in’ their AS grade after the first year and not continue the course for the second year.
New style, or ‘reformed’ A Levels have been introduced in some subjects from 2015: these are studied for two years, with no need for an exam at the end of the first year; instead there is an exam at the end of the two year programme of study. The AS is therefore a separate, stand-alone qualification.
Level 3 Vocational Courses
Level 3 vocational courses are of an equivalent standard to A levels that can be taken alongside AS and A Levels. These courses are of a more applied nature and are assessed through a combination of coursework and external exams.
AS, A2 and Level 3 Vocational qualifications all count towards the requirements for university entrance. You will find detailed subject explanations on the following pages.
* Vocational Course
To study AS/A Levels or our vocational courses you will normally need: A minimum of 5 GCSEs at Grade C or above. However if these 5 subjects include English or Maths, these will need to be a grade 5 or above. For students who do not have at least a grade 5 in Maths or English, there is an expectation that they will continue to study Maths or English GCSE.