This new course is aimed for all A Level Art & Design teachers looking to expand their range of approaches with inspiring, high quality practical strategies to achieve the very highest results in their students. The course will also focus on how to ‘unlock’ student pathways to the top mark bands without over-directing each student! There will be structured creative risk taking strategies to take away and apply to your students.

Focus will also be on how to ensure students work efficiently, with purpose and relevance; how to deliver an outstanding 1st year of a two year A level which builds confidence in how students make the correct choices about the direction of their work. We will build an intervention structure which ensures students take ownership of the assessment objectives as a launch pad for both The Personal Investigation & The Externally Set Assignment


  • Expand your range of teaching approaches and techniques with inspiring new strategies
  • Hit exam board requirements for reaching A*/A and the top mark band descriptors
  • Take away practical strategies for creative risk taking which leads to highest results
  • Learn how to ‘sell the meaning of the assessment objectives’ to your students
  • Explore strategies for dealing with students of all abilities, including the weak student
  • Take away essential strategies to build an effective curriculum structure for the two year course

COURSE DATE Online | Friday 12 November 2021

London | Tuesday 25 January 2022

  • All experienced teachers of A level Art & Design titles Fine Art, Graphics, Textiles & 3D design
  • Heads of department
IN-SCHOOL You can also book this as an In-School Course
  • A specially prepared folder of detailed notes, practical advice and guidance
  • Notes prepared by the educational experts leading the course
  • Expert produced PowerPoint presentations
  • CPD Certificate of attendance

10.00 – 10.45am: Challenging our most able A/A* Art & Design students

  • What do ‘gifted’, ‘talented’ and ‘able’ mean Art & Design & how must student work demonstrate this?
  • What does an A/A* component of student work look like?
  • Why do we have to challenge our most able students?
  • How should we be challenging them?

10.45 – 11.30am: How are A/A* grades achieved?

  • Feedback: looking back at the summer exams: What went well? What did examiners look for at the top levels?
  • Identifying the key characteristics in students’ work that demonstrate and A or A* – AO2 ability to review and refine and AO4 present personal responses that realise intentions,  Personal student choices through the development of ideas – AO1, 
  • Missing out on the A/A* grades: common mistakes and key issues
  • Exploring examples of A/A* students’ work in detail

11.30 – 11.45am: Morning Break

11.45 – 12.30pm: Shaping a well-structured course for A level Art & Design

  • How students make the correct choices about the direction of their investigations – course structure examples
  • How to select a successful area of study for The Personal Investigation that ensure scope & depth of learning evidence
  • Demonstrating intellectual rigour through the essay: Structure and samples  
  • Selling the purpose of each task and the importance of success criteria  

12.30 – 13.30pm: Lunch

13.30 – 14.15pm: Developing A/A* AO1 and AO2 Skills 

  • Pinpointing intellectual rigour through AO1 critical and analytical understanding 
  • How to support students in demonstrating a balance of knowledge & understanding and skills and techniques – ‘skill and idea’
  • Reviewing & refining: AO2 as highest order thinking and making
  • Practical strategies and approaches to take away for creative risk taking which leads to high end results

14.15 – 15.00pm: Developing A/A* in AO3 and AO4 Skill

  • What Grades  A/A*  look like in Assessment Objective 3 and 4 and what AQA moderators expect to see to award marks across the top 2 mark bands in these areas 
  • Workshop strategies to ensure your students provide evidence of drawing in both their portfolio submission and externally set assignment taking different forms depending on intentions  
  • Purpose and need VS technical mastery
  • Ideas and approaches to refine the final realisations in high ability students’ work
  • How to ensure students extended creative responses explicitly evidence their ability to draw together different areas of knowledge, skill and/or understanding

15.00 – 15.30pm: Plenary

15.30pm: Finish

Dr Helen Jones

Dr Helen Jones is a Director of Teaching and Learning in Art with 11 years teaching experience. She has been an AQA A level and GCSE Art & Design moderator for the past 5 years. Helen completed an MA in Art Education and then completed a Doctorate in the subject. She has been assessed as an outstanding teacher by OfSTED, achieved record residuals at both GCSE and A level and delivered at a number of Art Education conferences. Helen achieved a 1st Class honours in Fine Art and continues to be a practicing Artist from her home studio in Chester. She has also received additional intensive CPD in Finland, to understand their world class education system and to draw progressive teaching and learning strategies from the Finnish approach to education.