Introducing A levels

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A levels are Level 3 qualifications, with exams taking place at the end of two years. You will normally be asked to choose three subjects at A level. However, if you have a very strong GCSE profile you may be able to choose four. You may also take additional subjects such as GCSEs or enhancement courses.

For entrance to a university degree course a minimum of two A level passes at E or above is usually required. In practice, however, three A levels are needed. For many courses the pass grades need to be high. For example, entry to courses in Medicine and Veterinary Science often requires passes at grade A or A* in three A level subjects as well as very good passes at GCSE level. For many careers a minimum of two good A level passes is required.

Please note: there is no guarantee that a particular course will run if demand is small or the course cannot be staffed. Nor can a place be guaranteed on an oversubscribed course. Similarly, no guarantee can be made that all combinations of subjects will be possible, though every effort will be made to meet individual requirements. This course directory has been prepared on the basis of the latest information available. Some of the information contained may be subject to change due to factors beyond the College’s control.


The minimum general requirement for entry to a full-time two year A level course is:
• Five passes in GCSE at grade C or above (including GCSE English Language and GCSE Maths) for students wishing  to study three A levels.
• Four passes in GCSE at grade C or above (preferably including GCSE English Language and GCSE Maths) for students wishing to study two A levels, alongside other subjects.

Many A level subjects require particular entry requirements in addition to the above. Please see the individual subject entries in the course directory.


New specifications will be offered in all A level subjects from September 2017.

What are the main changes?

  • A level qualifications are changing from modular to linear assessment, with exams taking place at the end of the course.
  • The AS is a stand-alone qualification, which doesn’t contribute to the A level grade.
  • In science subjects, practical coursework will no longer contribute to your AS or A level grade. There will be 12 practical activities across the two-year A level, leading to a separate certificate to endorse practical skills. Exams will test practical knowledge and understanding, with practical-based questions forming 15% of the total A level assessment.