Sigma Sixth

Our College Curriculum

Our sixth form has a proven track record of delivering examination success. Our young people have consistently achieved results above the national average for value-added. 

Academic excellence is of primary importance in everything we do. Our teachers are passionate about their subject and are committed to teaching interesting and challenging lessons.

Students will be offered a personalised study path chosen from a wide range of academic courses matched to their strengths and plans for the future. A tutor will also act as an academic mentor to ensure you stay on track.  

Our purpose built sixth form college has an e-learning suite and study centre, which students can use for independent study. All of our students can access their work from home through Google classroom. 

Field Trips and work-experience complement lessons and help to develop new skills and interests.  

In addition to A-Levels and BTEC, students can also work towards an Extended Project Qualification, which is highly recognised by universities. 

The majority of our students join their university of choice. A growing number of our students also access the expanding apprenticeship market, securing placements with well respected companies.

‘The way staff coach, educate and communicate to the students is exceptional.’

“The proportion of students gaining top grades at A-level.. was impressive.” (Ofsted)

A-Level Art & Design

A-Level Art and Design: Fine Art /Textiles/ Graphic Communications

Course Outline:

The A Level is a two year course which consists of three units of work: Personal Portfolio, Critical Study and the externally set assignment. Within the Art and Design A Level we are offering three disciplines: Fine Art, Textiles and Graphic Communications.

Complementary Subjects:

Any of the Art and Design disciplines can run alongside subjects such as Photography, Media Studies or other creative subjects. Equally, students from other disciplines may well enjoy the opportunity to explore and develop a different set of skills.

Assessment:

Unit 1: Fine Art Portfolio Critical Study – 60%
Unit 2: Externally set assignment – 40%

Entry Requirements:

Students are required to have grade 5 or above in GCSE Art.

A-Level Biology

A-Level Biology

Course Outline / Additional Requirements

Section 1: Biological molecules
Section 2: Cells
Section 3: Organisms exchange substances with their environment
Section 4: Genetic information, variation and relationships between organisms
Section 5: Energy transfers in and between organisms
Section 6: Organisms respond to changes in their internal and external environments
Section 7: Genetics, populations, evolution and ecosystems
Section 8: The control of gene expression.

Complementary Subjects:

Following a Biology course provides the skills that could be used in a varied range of professions including medicine, veterinary medicine, animal health, horticulture, agriculture, physiotherapy, teaching, food science technology, midwifery, dentistry, biochemistry, occupational therapy, optometry, pharmacy and radiography. Many students will combine their studies in Biology with Chemistry, Physics or Psychology.

Assessment:

Three written exams which will assess content from sections 1 to 8. Practical skills are assessed within the written papers with 15% of the total A Level marks allocated for practical knowledge and understanding. A separate endorsement of practical skills requires students to undertake a minimum of 12 teacher-assessed practical activities during the two year course.

Entry Requirements:

Students are required to have grade 6 in GCSE Biology or grade 6/6 in Science & grade 5 in GCSE Maths.

A-Level Business Studies

A-Level Business Studies

Course Outline / Additional Requirements

The A Level course aims to develop a critical understanding of organisations, the markets they serve and the process of adding value.
This involves consideration of the internal workings and management of organisations and, in particular, the process of decision making in a dynamic external environment. We look at the inter-relationship between the four main functional areas of business, and pay particular attention to the strategic decisions that each of the areas may take in order to contribute to the success of the whole business.

Complementary Subjects:

Many subjects combine well with Business including Psychology, Law, IT, French, Mathematics, Media Studies, English, and Sociology.

Assessment:

Three, 2 hour exams:

  • Paper 1: Marketing & Global Businesses
  • Paper 2: Business Activities & Strategies
  • Paper 3: Investigating Businesses

Entry Requirements:

GCSE Business not previously essential, but a minimum of grade 5 in GCSE English and Mathematics is required.

A-Level Chemistry

A-Level Chemistry

Course Outline / Additional Requirements

Year 1: Physical chemistry; Atomic structure; Amount of substance; Bonding; Energetics; Kinetics; Chemical equilibria; Oxidation, Reduction and redox equations; Inorganic chemistry; Periodicity; The alkaline earth metals; The halogens; Organic chemistry; Alkanes; Halogenoalkanes; Alkenes; Alcohols; Organic analysis.

Year 2: Physical chemistry; Thermodynamics; Rate equations; Electrode potentials and electrochemical cells; Acids and bases; Inorganic chemistry; Period 3 elements and their oxides; Transition metals; Reactions of ions; Organic chemistry; Optical isomerism; Aldehydes and ketones; Carboxylic acids; Aromatic chemistry; Amines; Polymers; Amino acids, proteins and DNA; Organic synthesis; Nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy; Chromatography.

Complementary Subjects:

Chemistry is highly regarded as a sound basis for employment in many areas. By entering the world of Chemistry you will be equipping yourself to play a leading role in the complex world of tomorrow.

Assessment:

Three written exams which will assess content from both Years 12 and 13.
Practical skills are assessed within the written papers with 15% of the total marks allocated for practical knowledge and understanding. A separate endorsement of practical skills requires students to undertake a minimum of 12 teacher-assessed practical activities.

Entry Requirements:

Students are required to have grade 7 in GCSE Chemistry or grade 7/7 in Science & grade 6 in GCSE Maths

Level 3 Criminology

Level 3 Applied Criminology 

Course Outline / Additional Requirements

Unit 1: Changing Awareness of Crime: How we can differentiate between myth and reality when it comes to crime, and understand the importance of changing public perceptions of crime.
Unit 2: Criminological Theories Different theoretical explanations of crime and how to understand the behaviour of a specific crime or criminal.
Unit 3: Crime Scene to Courtroom The development of the skills needed to review criminal cases, evaluating the evidence to determine whether the verdict is safe and just.
Unit 4: Crime and Punishment The consequences to those who violate our legal system and how they are punished within the criminal justice system in England and Wales.

Entry Requirements:

5 GCSEs at grade 5 or above including Science, English and Maths.

A-Level Drama and Theatre

A-Level Drama and Theatre

What will I study?

The A Level Drama and Theatre course requires students to take a practical and academic exploration of Theatre. Students are expected to take part in practical projects and apply practitioner ideas as well as create creative logs and write academically reasoned essays on current theatre practice. There are three components to the course. In Components One and Two you will rehearse and explore text and perform pieces, both script based and devised, to an external examiner and audience. These pieces are supported by written work which outlines your processes of investigation. For Component Three you will undertake a written exam which will focus on three different plays which you will have studied and looked at practically over the two years of the course, looking at staging the plays from the point of view of a director and actor and designer. 

Is this course right for me?

If you enjoy watching theatre, are happy to perform and are willing to try out ideas in a workshop environment then you will enjoy the course. The ability to work as part of a team is essential. There are many opportunities to practically apply your skills as a performer.  More challenging areas would include essay writing and the application of theory to practice. Assessment is 40% practical and 60% written. This subject would suit students who are interested in studying any humanities subjects such as English Literature and Language as well as History and Classics. Additionally it sits well alongside social sciences such as Psychology and Sociology, and of course complementary subjects such as Media & Art and Design/Photography.

Where next?

The study of Drama and Theatre at A level can help students with a variety of skills as well as develop their creative career aspirations.  Students who study this course will enhance their skills in creative thinking, teamwork, analysis, presentation skills, planning etc.  The course supports students wishing to improve their communication skills in both verbal and written forms. Students can progress from this course into a number of career areas either by further study or by direct entry to the job market. The skills you gain while studying a performing arts degree are valued by all types of employers, for example confidence, self-presentation, teamwork and collaboration, ability to experiment with different ideas and learning from feedback. Examples of related roles that students may pursue could include Actor, Stage Manager, Arts Administrator, Dramatherapist and Television Production Assistant.

Course Outline

Component 1: Theatre Workshop – 20% of qualification (PRACTICAL)

Learners will be assessed on either acting or design. Learners participate in the creation, development and performance of a piece of theatre based on a reinterpretation of an extract from a text chosen from a list supplied by WJEC. The piece must be developed using the techniques and working methods of either an influential theatre practitioner or a recognised theatre company. Learners must produce:  a realisation of the performance or design  a creative log. 

Component 2: Text in Action – 40% of qualification (PRACTICAL)

Learners will be assessed on either acting or design. Learners participate in the creation, development and performance of two pieces of theatre based on a stimulus supplied by WJEC. Learners must realise their performance live for the visiting examiner. Learners choosing design must also give a 5-10 minute presentation of their design to the examiner. Learners produce a process and evaluation report within one week of completion of the practical work.

Component 3: Text in Performance Written examination: 2 hours 30 minutes 40% of qualification (THEORY)

Sections A and B Open book: Clean copies (no annotation) of the two complete texts chosen must be taken into the examination. Two questions, based on two different texts, one written pre1956 and one written post-1956. 

Section C Closed book: The extract of text required for answering the questions will be printed on the examination paper. A question based on a specified extract from: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, Mark Haddon, adapted by Simon Stephens. Details of the 10-15 minute extract will be released during the first week of March, in the year in which the examination is to be taken.

Entry Requirements:

Either:
BTEC Level 2 in Performing Arts – Merit or above.
GCSE Drama or Dance grade 5 or above
The ability to demonstrate extra-curricular experience in drama/theatre work at interview.

A-Level Economics

A-Level Economics

Course Outline / Additional Requirements

Micro-economics: Markets and Market Failure: why economic choices have to be made; the market model; how markets can be efficient and also how they can fail.  Macro-economics: The National Economy; the use of economic models to develop a critical understanding of macroeconomic issues; understanding and evaluating the different policy options used by governments to manage the economy.

Assessment:

The subject content is largely topical and this makes it necessary for students to consult a wide variety of media sources such as newspapers, television and the Internet.

Entry Requirements:

The A Level syllabus is only suited to those who have successfully studied
GCSE Mathematics at the Higher tier. Students must have a minimum of grade 6, but will usually have achieved grade 7 or higher at GCSE.

A-Level English Language & Literature

A-Level English Language & Literature

Course Outline / Additional Requirements

Students following the course will study a minimum of five literary texts which cover poetry, prose and drama. In addition, a range of non-literary texts will be studied as part of the study of the language of non-fiction & speech.

Complementary Subjects:

English Language and Literature combines well with almost any other subject and can introduce breadth to a science or mathematics-based curriculum.

Assessment:

Assessment will take the form of mainly examinations. Non-Examination Assessments will offer opportunities for students to develop extended pieces of analytical work over a period of time. Examinations and the
NEA will count towards the overall grading.

Entry Requirements:

Students are required to have at least grade 5, preferably grade 6, in both GCSE English Language and Literature.

A-Level English Language

A-Level English Language

Course Outline / Additional Requirements

The analysis from a range of texts covers language levels such as lexis and semantics, grammar (including morphology), pragmatics and phonology. Students will look at language in society, its diversity, the varieties of English language, and how children acquire language.

Complementary Subjects:

English Language combines well with almost any other subject and can introduce breadth to a science or mathematics based curriculum. As there are elements of sociolinguistics and psycholinguistics, this course also compliments humanities based A Levels.

Assessment:

Assessment will take the form of mainly examinations, which constitutes 80% of the overall grade. Non-Examination Assessment constitutes 20% of the overall grade.

Entry Requirements:

Students are required to have at least grade 5, preferably grade 6, in GCSE English Language.

A-Level English Literature

A-Level English Literature

Course Outline / Additional Requirements

On this course you will study the works of some the world’s greatest authors, dramatists and poets. You will study a wide range of novels, plays and poetry, from Chaucer to the present day

Complementary Subjects:

English Literature combines well with almost any other subject and can introduce breadth to a science or mathematics-based curriculum.

Assessment:

Assessment will take the form of mainly examinations. Non-Examination Assessments will offer opportunities for students to develop extended pieces of analytical work over a period of time. Examinations and the NEA will count towards the overall grading.

Entry Requirements:

Students are required to have at least grade 5, preferably grade 6, in both GCSE English Language and Literature.

A-Level French

A-Level French

Course Outline / Additional Requirements

In the first year there are four topics. These relate to Media, Popular Culture, Healthy Living/Lifestyle and Family/Relationships. The common thread amongst these is discovering how people communicate at a personal level, and what their individual views are on these everyday topics. In the second year topics include the Environment, the Multicultural Society and Contemporary Social Issues plus a choice from five cultural topics: a French speaking region; 20th Century
history; an author from a target language speaking country; a dramatist or poet from a French speaking country; a director, architect, musician or painter.

Complementary Subjects:

French is an ideal complement to subjects in all other disciplines. In addition, it is looked upon very favourably by universities as it is seen as a qualification with many transferable skills.

Assessment:

Unit 1: Listening, Reading and Writing exam
Unit 2: 15 minute Speaking Test
Unit 3: Listening, Reading and Writing exam
Unit 4: 15 minute Speaking Test

Entry Requirements:

Students must have achieved at least grade 6 in GCSE French and at least grade 5 in GCSE English Language.

A-Level Geography

A-Level Geography 

Course Outline / Additional Requirements

The A Level comprises a number of varied physical and human units. The Geography course will consider geographical issues which span the realms of physical and human geography and explore people-environment perspectives. Fieldwork skills are taught on field trips over four days.

Complementary Subjects:

The skills learnt in Geography are applicable to a wide range of areas of work including legal work, journalism, media, resource management, environmental sciences, surveying, travel and tourism, marketing and teaching. Good course combinations include Mathematics, Biology, Chemistry, Physics and English.

Assessment:

Assessment will consist of examination papers which will include questions on physical and human geography as well as fieldwork.

Entry Requirements:

It is desirable (but not essential) that students have studied GCSE Geography. Students are required to have at least grade 5, preferably grade 6, in a Humanities subject and in GCSE English.

A-Level Government & Politics

A-Level Government & Politics

Course Outline / Additional Requirements

The specification has been designed to encourage interest in, and enthusiasm for, the study of Government and Politics and will enable students to develop an insight into political beliefs, central to an understanding of the modern world. The first year of the course provides an introduction to the subject through an examination of UK political procedures and institutions such as democracy and political participation, party policies and ideas and key institutions.
The second year course allows more specialisation requiring more skills analysis and evaluation and offers a choice of topics: UK and EU Political Issues; Political Ideologies; US Politics and Global Politics. Students will be given the opportunity to engage in contemporary political debates throughout the course.

Assessment:

The course is 100% examination – three exams at the end of the second year. Students will study the following topics during the course:

  • What it is like to be part of the political system
  • How politics is undertaken in the country we live in
  • How politics is different in the US compared to the UK.

Entry Requirements:

Students are required to have at least grade 5 in GCSE English Language and a genuine interest in the government and politics in this country and around the world.

Level 3 Health and Social Care

Level 3 Cambridge Extended Certificate Health and Social Care

Course Outline / Additional Requirements

Students are required to complete four mandatory units which are assessed via examination. The other three units are assessed via portfolio. Modules include:

  • Building Positive Relationships
  • Equality, Diversity and Rights
  • Health and Safety and Security
  • Anatomy and Physiology
  • Sexual Health, Reproduction & Early Development Stages
  • Complementary Subjects:

The course equips students with the skills needed for higher education courses such as: medical health and social care; social policy; social work; nursing; physiotherapy; occupational therapy; working with children, young people and families; psychology; sociology. The course also enables students to enter the world of work in a variety of careers such as: childcare; nursing; paediatrics; midwifery; social work; teaching; police officer; probation officer; paramedic; health visitor; mental health worker; counselling.

Assessment:

Examination and Portfolio. Please note that this course is a Technical Award, which means it is recognised as an equivalent to an A Level and therefore UCAS points are awarded accordingly.

Entry Requirements:

It is desirable that students have at least grade 5 in English and grade 5 in Double Science. If a student has studied GCSE or equivalent Health and Social Care they need to have achieved a Level 2 Merit.

A-Level History

A-Level History

Course Outline / Additional Requirements

Our A Level History qualification has been designed to help students understand the significance of historical events, the role of individuals in history and the nature of change over time. This qualification will help all students to gain a deeper understanding of the past through political, social, economic and cultural perspectives. The engaging topics available to students throughout the course will provide the knowledge and skills required to succeed at A Level. Topics to be studied are:

  • Component 1: The Tudors: England, 1485-1603
  • Component 2: Democracy and Nazism: Germany 1918-1945
  • Component 3: Historical Investigation (Personal Study): Ireland & Britain in the 20th Century

Complementary Subjects:

History goes well with any other subject, as increasingly universities and colleges look for a wider range of subjects in an applicant’s portfolio.

Assessment:

The course is 80% examination – three exams at the end of the second year. Historical Investigation (20%). This will be independently researched and written in the form of a piece of extended writing between 3000 and 3500 words in length.

Entry Requirements:

It is desirable that students have studied History at GCSE, but this is not essential. Students should have GCSE grade 5 or above in a Humanities subject and GCSE English.

A-Level Law

A-Level Law

Course Outline / Additional Requirements

Students will study three units over the A Level course: The legal system and criminal law; law making and the law of tort; the nature of law and the law of contract. These topics will give students an insight into the distinction between enforceable legal rules in contrast to other rules and  norms of behaviour. You will also gain an understanding of the differences between criminal and civil law and between different sources of law including custom, statute law and the common law. There are also topics such as the legislative process including types of bills, stages in the process and the role of the Law Commission as well as a variety of influences on law making. You will also study delegated legislation, statutory interpretation, judicial precedent, the functions of the civil and criminal courts as well as the legal profession. You will also learn about defences such as insanity, automatism and self-defence. Other areas include tort law, law and morality and contract law.

Complementary Subjects:

Many other subjects go well with Law, for example, English, History, Psychology, Sociology and Economics.

Assessment:

At A Level, there are three, two hour examinations. Each paper is worth one third of the full A Level.

Entry Requirements:

Law students should be interested in the world around them, be able to write and communicate effectively and develop sound reasoning skills. Students should have a minimum of grade 5 or above in GCSE English Language and it is also preferable that students have a grade 5 in GCSE Mathematics.

A-Level Mathematics

A-Level Mathematics

Course Outline / Additional Requirements

The course follows three key elements:
Core, Statistics and Mechanics. All students intending to pursue a conventional 2-year A Level in Mathematics will sit a test of their mathematical capability within the first two weeks of Year 12. Prior to this, all applicants will receive a preparatory pack to work through during the summer break, outlining the skills that we believe a student should possess before embarking on A Level Mathematics. Students who demonstrate that they are not yet able to follow the conventional Mathematics course can opt for Core Maths in Year 12 with a view to continuing on to the full AS in Year 13.

Complementary Subjects:

Mathematics is an ideal subject to study with any advanced level subjects, but has particular relevance for any Science subject, Economics and Business Studies, Computing, IT, Geography, Sociology and Psychology.

Assessment:

• Two 2 hour Pure maths papers
• One 2 hour Statistics and Mechanics paper

Entry Requirements:

The A Level syllabus is only suited to those who have successfully studied
GCSE Mathematics at the Higher tier. Students must have a minimum of grade 6, but will usually have achieved grade 7 or higher at GCSE.

A-Level Further Mathematics

A-Level Further Mathematics

Course Outline / Additional Requirements

In the first year you will study the compulsory unit Further Core Maths 1 where you will study proof, complex numbers and matrices. You will also study two modules from Further Mechanics 1 and Further Decision Maths 1. In the second year you will study the compulsory unit Further Core Maths 2 where you will study polar co-ordinates, hyperbolic functions and differential equations. You will also study two optional modules Further Mechanics 1 and Further Decision Maths 1.

Complementary Subjects:

The natural sciences, particularly Physics, all have a significant amount of mathematics in them, and you will find the skills you learn in both Maths and Further Maths transfer nicely. Also, by virtue of doing twice as much maths as is in the regular A Level, you will likely find you get lots of opportunity to hone your skills in things such as calculus. Consequently, students who study Further Maths at A Level often achieve top grades in their regular A Level Maths.

Assessment:

100% end of year exams.

  • Two 90 mins Core Maths exams
  • 90 mins Further Mechanics 1
  • 90 mins Further Decision Maths 1

Entry Requirements:

An analytical mind, and a hunger to solve logical problems are essential.
GCSE Mathematics grade 7, preferably grade 8, is required. Exposure to GCSE Further Maths will also give you a great foundation for this course.

Level 3 Core Maths

Level 3 Core Maths

Course Outline / Additional Requirements

Students following this two year programme will work towards a fully accredited Level 3 qualification equivalent to half an A-level. Core Maths will help you understand and apply clear mathematical reasoning to real-life problems, analyse and interpret data and confidently deal with everyday financial maths. It is intended that the course will also allow opportunities for students to bring supplementary material to lessons designed to support other areas of the curriculum, such as the sciences, geography, business studies, psychology and economics. This is to enable students to see the wider applications of mathematics in practical relevant contexts.

Assessment:

One 90 minute Core 1 Maths paper
One 90 minute Core 2 Maths Paper

Entry Requirements:

Students are required to have a minimum of grade 5 in GCSE Mathematics. Students that have not studied GCSE, but have experienced a mathematical background of a similar standard, will also be considered for entry onto the course.

A-Level Media Studies

A-Level Media Studies

Course Outline / Additional Requirements

A Level specifications in Media Studies require close analysis and comparison of media products in relation to relevant key social, cultural, economic, political and historical contexts. During coursework, students will produce an individual cross-media production in response to a brief. The first exam will include unseen audio-visual or print based material from which students will respond with case study examples. The second exam will require students to explore text, industry and audience and the links between theory and media texts.

Complementary Subjects:

Media Studies is a good example of a cross-curricular subject. It will develop your research skills, analytical skills, creativity, reading and writing. As such it provides useful preparation for further education and employment. Media has links with the study of texts and language in English as well as great debating opportunities. It also shares relevance with the social sciences and ICT. Students may also wish to get involved in extra-curricular activities, either in college or with local media organisations.

Assessment:

30% Coursework (NEA)
70% Exam (Exam 1: 2hr 15 minutes / Exam 2: 2hr 30 minutes)

Entry Requirements:

Students are required to have grade 5, preferably grade 6 in GCSE English. It is desirable for students to have taken Media Studies at GCSE but it is not a requirement.

BTEC Performing Arts

BTEC Performing Arts

Course Outline / Additional Requirements

• Investigating Practitioners’ Work
• Developing Skills and Techniques for Live Performance (Certificate)
• Group Performance Workshop
• Performing Arts in the Community
• Final Live Performance to an Audience (Diploma)

 

Entry Requirements:

Either:
BTEC Level 2 in Performing Arts – Merit or above.
GCSE Drama or Dance grade 5 or above
The ability to demonstrate extra-curricular experience in drama/theatre work at interview.

A-Level Photography

A-Level Photography

Course Outline / Additional Requirements

The first year of the course consists of two units of work: Foundation skills and a photography portfolio. The second year consists of three units of work: photography portfolio, critical study and an externally set assignment.

Complementary Subjects:

Photography can be studied as part of a portfolio of creative subjects, such as Art and Design and Media Studies. Equally, students from other disciplines may well enjoy the opportunity to explore and develop a different set of skills.

Assessment:

Unit 1: Personal Photographic Portfolio and Critical Study 60%
Unit 2: Externally set assignment 40%
All coursework is marked internally and externally moderated.

Entry Requirements:

Students are required to have grade 6 or above in GCSE Art, Photography or appropriate Technology subject.

A-Level Physical Education

A-Level Physical Education

Course Outline / Additional Requirements

Applied anatomy and physiology; exercise physiology; biomechanics; skill acquisition; sports psychology; sport and society; contemporary issues in physical activity and sport; performance or coaching; Evaluation and Analysis of Performance for Improvement (EAPI).

Complementary Subjects:

Physical Education works well with a broad range of subjects. Biology and Psychology have particular relevance.

Assessment:

Two 2 hour exams plus Non-Examination Assessment (NEA)

Paper 1: Factors affecting participation
in Physical Activity & Sport

Paper 2: Factors affecting optical
performance in Sport

NEA: Practical Performance

Entry Requirements:

Students should ideally have grade 6 / Merit or higher in a Level 2 PE course. Students must also have a minimum of grade 5 in Science, but preferably grade 6. This course is open to students who have not studied GCSE PE but acceptance will be upon discussion with the subject leader. Students will be expected to further their own personal high level of performance through participation in sport outside of college.

A-Level Physics

A-Level Physics

Course Outline / Additional Requirements

  1. Measurements and their errors
  2. Particles and radiation
  3. Waves
  4. Mechanics and materials
  5. Fields and their consequences
  6. Electricity
  7. Nuclear physics
  8. Further mechanics and thermal physics
  9. Turning points in physics

Complementary Subjects:

Physics fits in well with other natural sciences and, while not absolutely essential at A Level, Mathematics is recommended if considering studying Physics at university. Product Design, PE and Social Sciences can all combine well with Physics.

Assessment:

Three written exams. Paper 1 will assess content from sections 1 to 6. Paper 2 will assess content from sections 6 to 8 (with assumed knowledge from sections 1 to 5). Paper 3 will assess practical skills and data
analysis plus section 9. Practical work is assessed.

Entry Requirements:

Students are required to have at least: grade 7 in GCSE Physics or 7/7 for Science & grade 7 in GCSE Maths.

A-Level Psychology

A-Level Psychology

Course Outline / Additional Requirements

The A Level course is made up of three units:

  • Paper one includes a number of topics such as: social influence comprising conformity and obedience; memory, including the study of theories related to memory; as well as eyewitness testimony and explanations of attachment.
  • Paper two covers a number of different psychological approaches: psychopathology; abnormality and mental health; and the biopsychology of stress. Students will also gain an excellent grounding in data analysis and research methodology.
  • Paper three covers a number of optional topics such as cognition and development, aggression, forensic psychology, relationships and stress.

Complementary Subjects:

Psychology combines well with both science and humanities subjects. Maths and Biology have particular relevance. Law, Sociology or Health & Social Care also complement this subject.

Assessment:

Assessment is via written examination: three 2 hour exams at the end of the course. Each paper is equally weighted.

Entry Requirements:

Students should also have achieved grade 5 or above in GCSE English Language. Students who have studied statistics at GCSE will also be at an advantage.

A-Level Religious Studies & Philosophy

A-Level Religious Studies & Philosophy

Course Outline / Additional Requirements

In studying this course, students will experience life-enhancing learning in that the topics covered can have a real impact on moral thinking and the dilemmas we face as people. The course explores philosophy, religion and ethics within a modern context. It looks at questions such as:

  • Does the order and purpose of the world imply a designer?
  • Is religion a human construct?
  • Does God exist?
  • Is spirituality a type of religious expression?
  • Does the existence of evil and suffering in the world mean that there is no God?

Complementary Subjects:

This subject is an ideal complement to subjects in many other disciplines. It has clear links with History, Sociology and English Literature and could be a ‘healthy’ addition to an otherwise natural science-based programme of study.

Assessment:

External examinations at the end of the two year course.

Entry Requirements:

Students must have at least grade 5 in a Humanities subject and GCSE English to demonstrate an ability to write clearly and convey ideas effectively.

A-Level Sociology

A-Level Sociology

Course Outline / Additional Requirements

Unit one centres on Education. Students will study topics such as the role and functions of the education system including its relationship to the economy and to class structure, and differential educational achievement of social groups by social class, gender and ethnicity in contemporary society. Unit two covers Families and Households where students will study the issues relating to changes in family and household structure and the impact this has had on society. Unit three covers Crime and Deviance. In this unit, students will consider different explanations of crime and deviance and how various forms of behaviour become labelled as deviant, and how society controls its members.

Complementary Subjects:

Sociology is firmly established at university and complements many other subjects. Students who take Sociology often also study Psychology, Law, English Literature, History, Geography, or Media Studies.

Assessment:

Assessment is via written examination: three, two hour exams at the end of the course. Each paper is equally weighted.

Entry Requirements:

Students will need to have achieved grade 5/5 or above in GCSE
Science. In addition, students will need to carry out independent reading and research as well as answer essay style questions. Students should also have gained grade 5 or above in GCSE English Language.

A-Level Spanish

A-Level Spanish

Course Outline / Additional Requirements

In the first year there are four topics. These relate to Media, Popular Culture, Healthy Living/Lifestyle and Family/Relationships. The emphasis is on building on what you studied at GCSE. The common thread amongst these is discovering how people communicate at a personal level, and what their individual views are on these everyday topics. In the second year topics include the Environment, the Multicultural Society and Contemporary Social Issues plus a choice from five cultural topics

Complementary Subjects:

Spanish is an ideal complement to subjects in all other disciplines. In addition, it is looked upon very favourably by universities as it is seen as a qualification that stands up to scrutiny, with many transferable skills.

Assessment:

Unit 1: Listening, Reading and Writing exam
Unit 2: 15 minute Speaking Test
Unit 3: Listening, Reading and Writing exam
Unit 4: 15 minute Speaking Test

Entry Requirements:

Students must have achieved at least grade 6 in GCSE Spanish and at least grade 5 in GCSE English Language.

Sigma Sixth Sports Academy

A-Level Sports and BTEC

Why Sigma Sixth Sports Academy?

Sigma sixth sports academy offers a unique opportunity for students to study for either their A-levels or the level 3 BTEC national extended diploma in sport whilst training and playing matches in their chosen sport. Currently, rugby, football, golf, cricket, gymnastics and trampolining, student-athlete development, and basketball academies are available but we are looking to potentially develop this programme in the future to include other sports.

How does it work?

Students attend across our Sigma Sixth Colchester Campus including our purpose-built 6th form centre at Philip Morant, Essex University and the £25m northern gateway sports park. Students have the option of either studying a combination of A-levels of their choice or studying the BTEC national extended diploma in sport alongside their daily training. The BTEC sport qualification is the equivalent of three A-levels and can be used as a pathway to higher education in a sport-related field or as a stepping stone into employment or an apprenticeship within the sports sector, public services and other careers. Fixtures and other competitive opportunities take place throughout the week with county, regional and national fixtures usually taking place each Wednesday.

Progression

We have links with professional clubs and some of our previous students have gained both elite university scholarships and professional contracts. Others have entered Higher Education to study for a degree in a wide range of related subjects such as Sports Science; Physiotherapy;
Sports Management; Sports Journalism; Biological Sciences; Sports Coaching; Business Management and Marketing; Sport Psychology; and Education. Others have moved directly into employment in a wide range of related fields.

 

BTEC National Extended Diploma in Sports Coaching and Development

Course Outline / Additional Requirements

This qualification provides the knowledge, understanding and skills that allow learners to gain experience of the sport sector that will prepare them for further study or training.

Why study BTEC Sport at Advanced Level 3?
  • You are passionate about Sport and wish to gain 3 A levels (equivalent)
  • Diverse qualification with 12 different units
  • All coursework – no exams
  • Vocational and academic content
  • Practical components to the course

Direct links to University, apprenticeships, scholarships and employment

What would I study?
  • Fitness Testing
  • Fitness Training
  • Developing Coaching
  • Health, wellbeing and sport
  • Sports Development
  • Careers in Sport
  • Self employment in sport
  • Practical Sports application
  • Applied Coaching Skills
  • Rules, regulations & officiating
  • Sports Injuries
  • Research project in Sport
Careers linked to Sport include:
  • Sports coach
  • Sports Development Officer
  • PE Teacher
  • Performance Analyst
  • Physiotherapist
  • Personal Trainer
  • Sports Journalism
  • Sports Lawyer
  • Sports Centre Manager
  • Health and Hospitality
  • Sports Therapist
  • Sports Marketing

Assessment:

All assessment is internally set and marked and externally moderated. Assessment is ongoing and includes research assignments, case studies and projects as well as practical and technical skills. There are no external examinations. Assessment requires learners to demonstrate that they can identify and use effectively an appropriate selection of skills, techniques, concepts, theories and knowledge from across the whole curriculum as relevant to a key task.

Entry Requirements:

4 or more GCSE grades of 9 – 4, including English Language & Maths preferable. Student can resit Maths & English, if necessary.

View our Sports booklet here