Sixth Form Academic Curriculum

“Westonbirt is a community that stays with you as you make your journey beyond school. I feel I owe a great deal of my achievements and development to the combination of carefully tuned teaching to individual needs, pastoral support and breadth in curriculum”

Head Girl 2013

High academic achievement is continued into Sixth Form and girls are taught by specialists passionate about their subject. Westonbirt has an excellent record of entry into the best courses and universities for higher education.

Please see detail of our Sixth Form programme by downloading our Sixth Form Information Booklet.

Girls at Westonbirt enjoy Sixth Form life and are offered:

  • Stimulating learning in addition to academic learning
  • A robust Skills for Life programme
  • Pupils are helped to decide wisely about their participation in Sixth Form life and for their future careers and education
  • Year 12 pupils choose four AS Level subjects and continue with three in year 13.
  • Each A Level subject is allocated eight lessons per week and all girls attend a general studies lecture.
  • Have personal finance lessons each week.
  • There are a variety of sports on offer in the Sixth Form and games are played on Wednesday afternoons with optional extra lessons on Saturday mornings.
  • Outside the classroom there are many opportunities to learn new skills including Leiths Certificate in Food and Wine and Young Enterprise as well as range of MOS and ACA qualifications.
  • Small class sizes allow girls the greatest flexibility possible in their combination of subjects and extra-curricular activities.

Westonbirt have recently introduced a number of BTEC courses for Sixth Form. Mrs Jo Edwards is  the lead for all BTEC subjects and the main point of contact, please contact JO on the above link if you require further information about our BTEC courses. The courses and information are in the expandable box below:

BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate in Performing Arts

The performing arts are a major part of the creative and cultural industries in the UK. Overall, the industry contributes £4 billion to the UK economy and is a major employer. The UK’s performing arts sector is vibrant, varied and hugely successful. It is a growth industry that offers diverse employment opportunities, for example in dance, drama, music, theatre, film, puppetry, costume design, directing, set design, make¬up or special effects, as well as in the support functions and roles that bring these art forms to the fore.

Who is this qualification for?
BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate in Performing Arts is intended as an Applied General qualification, and is designed for post¬16 students, with an interest in performing arts, who want to continue their education through applied learning, and who aim to progress to higher education. The qualification is equivalent in size to 1 A Level and is designed to occupy one ¬third of a typical study programme, which could include other vocational or academic qualifications, such as another BTEC National or A Levels. This qualification gives a broad introduction to the performing arts sector, with an emphasis on core knowledge and fundamental skills that are transferable across other sectors (including communication, presentation, physical and creative skills).

What does the qualification cover?
The content of this qualification has been developed in consultation with academics to ensure that it supports progression to higher education. In addition, employers and professional bodies have been involved and consulted in order to confirm that the content is also appropriate and consistent with current practice for students choosing to enter employment. The three mandatory units focus on:
● research – critical analysis and extended writing skills that aim to support students’ progress to higher education. As possible performing arts practitioners, students will gain a good understanding of the work of influential practitioners to inform their own work and practice (Unit – Investigating Practitioners’ Work)
● an induction into the performing arts – where students will develop the appropriate skills and techniques in various performance disciplines such as acting, dance, musical theatre and physical theatre (Unit – Developing Skills and Techniques for Live Performance)
● group performance – students will develop the essential psychomotor and affective skills essential for the performing arts.

They will develop physical techniques, as well as wider transferable skills such as being able to work collaboratively, personal management and organisation (rehearsals, time management), being able to give and take direction, confidence in front of an audience, problem solving and team work (essential when dancing as a group). Students will understand different audiences in different environments and will learn to adapt a performance to engage the target audience.
Students select one optional unit to support choices in progression to performing arts and other courses in HE, and also cover acting, dance and musical theatre topics. Examples of the optional units include: classical ballet technique, street dance technique, acting styles, developing the voice for performance, and variety performance.

BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate in Travel and Tourism

The travel and tourism industry is one of the fastest and growing industries in the UK. The value of tourism to the UK economy is approximately £126 billion, and the sector employs around 3.1 million people.

Who is this qualification for?
BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate in Travel and Tourism is intended as an Applied General qualification. It is designed for post-16 students with an interest in travel and tourism who want to continue their education through applied learning and who aim to progress to higher education. The qualification is equivalent in size to one A level and is designed to occupy one-third of a typical study programme, which could include other vocational or academic qualifications, such as another BTEC National or A levels. This qualification gives a broad introduction to the travel and tourism industry, with an emphasis on core knowledge and fundamental skills that are transferable across other sectors. No prior study of the sector is needed, but students should normally have a range of achievement at level 2, in GCSEs or equivalent qualifications.

What does the qualification cover?
The aim of the qualification is to support progression to higher education, and the content has been developed in consultation with higher education providers to ensure that it supports this. In addition, employers and professional bodies have been involved and consulted, to confirm that the content is appropriate and consistent with current practice. The qualification provides the knowledge, understanding and skills that will prepare students for further study or training. Everyone taking this qualification will study three mandatory units, covering the following content areas:
● the travel and tourism industry – developing the skills needed to examine, interpret and analyse a variety of statistics that measure the importance of tourism to the UK
● different types of destinations and their importance – investigating the features and appeal of global destinations
● customer service – exploring and applying ways of managing internal and external customer experience to support organisational success and to develop customer service skills. Students select one option unit to support their progression to travel and tourism and other courses in higher education.
The option units cover content areas such as:
● visitor attractions
● passenger transport
● events, conferences and exhibitions.

BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate in Equine Management

The equine sector is an exciting and well-respected industry, which is rapidly expanding in the UK, contributing £7 billion a year to the economy. This sector has more than 19,000 businesses, 41,200 employees and many volunteers. The equine industry includes the welfare, husbandry, supervision and riding of horses, which means there are opportunities for working ranging from livery operations to thoroughbred racehorse training.

Who is this qualification for?
BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate in Equine Management is intended as a Tech Level qualification, equivalent in size to one A level and, as such, is designed to meet the Tech Bacc measure, when studied alongside level 3 mathematics and the Extended Project Qualification (EPQ). This qualification offers an engaging programme to support students who aspire to a career in the equine industry. This size of qualification allows students to study related and complementary qualifications without duplication of content. It provides good preparation for someone considering an apprenticeship in the equine sector. When taken alongside further level 3 qualifications, it also supports access to a range of higher education courses in the Equine management sector. No prior study of the sector is needed, but students should normally have a range of achievement at level 2, in GCSEs or equivalent qualifications.

What does the qualification cover?
The content of this qualification has been developed in consultation with employers and professional bodies to ensure that the content is appropriate for those interested in working in the sector. In addition, higher education representatives have been involved to ensure that it fully supports progression towards higher study. There are four mandatory units, which cover the following aspects of equine management:
● equine structure, form and function
● work experience in the equine sector
● horse tack, equipment and rugs
● equine health and husbandry. Students will be able to add one option unit to the mandatory content. The option units have been designed to support progression to a range of employment opportunities in the equine management sector, and to a range of higher education courses. Option units introduce students to a sector specialist area of their choice, including working in particular environments, and link with relevant occupational areas.
The option units cover areas such as:
● equine behaviour
● riding horses in the open
● estates and grassland management
● introduction to equestrian coaching

All students taking this qualification will be required to engage with sector employers as part of their course, including 75 hours’ work experience with an employer in the sector, where opportunities will be given to develop practical skills in preparation for employment.

BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate in Creative Digital Media Production

In 2014, the UK Government reported that the creative industries were worth £8 million an hour to the UK economy. From Guardians of the Galaxy to Minecraft, the UK holds the talent and resources that produce some of the most innovative and imaginative media in the world. The range of industries represented by creative digital media production includes media such as film and television, digital publishing and digital games. These are some of fastest growing industries in the UK and are one of the areas in which the UK leads the rest of the world.
Who is this qualification for?

BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate in Creative Digital Media Production has been developed in consultation with higher education and is intended to be an Applied General qualification. It is for post16 students who want to continue their education through applied learning [‘hands-on’] and who aim to progress to higher education, and ultimately to employment, possibly in the creative industries. The qualification is equivalent in size to 1 A Level and makes up one third of a typical study programme, normally alongside A Levels or other vocational qualifications at Level 3. It links really well with the BTEC in Production Arts, A Level Art or Photography and English.

What does this qualification cover?
The content of the qualification relates directly to the skills and understanding needed for further study in creative digital media production and has been developed in consultation with higher education. Over three units of mandatory content, students gain a broad understanding of the subject and learn the skills to produce media artefacts. They develop their ability to analyse and deconstruct media images and representations. Through vocational media projects, they learn the required communication skills to pitch for digital media commissions and planning skills to work in teams and create media products. Through an optional introductory unit in a particular media sector such as publishing and film, students create engaging digital media content using industry-standard software.
The mandatory units are:
● Media Representations
● Pre-production portfolio
● Responding to a commission [double weighted unit]
The optional units that we will offer will be:
● Film production OR
● Digital magazine production

BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate in Business

There are many different career paths for those who wish to work within the business sector. These include management, HR, finance, marketing and business information management, with the opportunity to work both in the UK and internationally.

Who is this qualification for?
BTEC National Extended Certificate in Business is intended to be an Applied General qualification for post¬16 students wanting to continue their education through applied learning, and who aim to progress to higher education and ultimately to employment, possibly in the business sector. The qualification is equivalent in size to 1 A level and aims to provide a coherent introduction to study of the business sector, normally alongside other level 3 qualifications. Students wishing to take this BTEC will have successfully completed a level 2 programme of learning with GCSEs or vocational qualifications.

What does the qualification cover?
The content of this qualification has been developed in consultation with academics to ensure that it supports progression to higher education. In addition, employers and professional bodies have been involved and consulted in order to confirm that the content is also appropriate for and consistent with current practice for students planning to enter employment directly in the business sector. Everyone taking this qualification will study three mandatory units.
They are:
● Exploring the Business Environment
● Developing a Marketing Campaign
● Personal and Business Finance
The optional units have been designed to support choices in progression to business courses in HE, and to link with relevant occupational areas. They cover content areas such as:
● human resources
● accounting
● marketing
● law.
In addition, the qualification includes an optional work experience unit, which enables all students to benefit from practical experience of the sector.

BTEC Level 3 National Extended Certificate in Animal Management

The animal management sector is rapidly developing from a low¬ grade, largely manual sector into a service industry meeting the broad demands of the animal ¬owning and interested public. Animal care is worth £1 billion to the UK economy. This sector has 20,000 businesses, 78,000 employees and many volunteers. There are many different career paths and opportunities for those wishing to work in animal management which range from working with small to large, domesticated and exotic animals in subsector areas such animal welfare, business, science and wildlife conservation.

Who is this qualification for?
This qualification offers an engaging programme to support students who aspire to a career in an animal ¬related industry. It is intended as a Tech Level qualification, equivalent in size to 1 A level and, as such, is designed to meet the Tech Bacc measure, when studied alongside level 3 mathematics and the Extended Project Qualification (EPQ). This size of qualification allows students to study related and complementary qualifications without duplication of content. It provides good preparation for someone considering an apprenticeship in animal management. When taken alongside further level 3 qualifications, it also supports access to a range of higher education courses in the animal management sector. No prior study of the sector is needed, but students should normally have a range of achievement at level 2, in GCSEs or equivalent qualifications.

What does the qualification cover?
The content of this qualification has been developed in consultation with employers and professional bodies to ensure that the content is appropriate for those working in the sector. In addition, HE representatives have been involved in order to ensure it supports progression towards higher study. The mandatory units are as follows:
● Unit 3: Animal Welfare and Ethics
● Unit 4: Practical Animal Husbandry
● Unit 5: Animal Behaviour
● Unit 6: Animal Health and Disease
● Unit 7: Work Experience in the Animal Sector
All students taking this qualification will be required to engage with sector employers as part of their course, including 75 hours work experience with an employer in the sector, where opportunities will be given to develop practical skills in preparation for employment.

BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma in Hospitality

The hospitality sector spans a range of 20+ industries including hospitality services, contract food services, holiday parks, hotels and other venues, events management and visitor attractions. Together, the sector contributes over £63 billion in GVA each year and employs approximately 2.9 million people in more than 419,000 establishments. The majority of the organisations are private sector. The hospitality and tourism sector employs 7% of the working population (1 in every 14 jobs). Longer-term employment projections suggest that by 2020 the sector’s workforce will have grown by 6% (660,200 people), which is higher than the projected increase for the economy as a whole. Labour market reports from the Sector Skills Council, People 1st, further suggest that the investment required to improve quality and standards in a service driven sector such as hospitality and tourism should focus on increasing the skills of those working in the sector.

Who is this qualification for?
BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma in Hospitality is part of a larger suite of hospitality qualifications, in a range of sizes, which share the common purpose of helping people to become occupationally ready to take up employment in the hospitality sector at the appropriate level. This can follow either directly after achieving the qualification, or via the stepping stone of Higher Education (HE) in university or college. By studying a BTEC National, learners develop knowledge, understanding and skills required by the sector, including essential employability skills, and apply them in real work contexts. Learners can operate at a standard that can reasonably be expected of an 18 year old in full-time education.

What does the qualification cover?
BTEC Level 3 Subsidiary Diploma in Hospitality is a vocational qualification, equivalent in size to an A level, which has been designed to occupy one third of the curriculum within a broader programme of study, which could include other vocational or academic qualifications. Its main purpose is to allow learners to develop the core specialist knowledge, understanding and skills, including knowledge and understanding of the scale, structure and organisation of provision of the hospitality industry, the principles of supervising customer service, how to provide customer service and why good customer service is essential for hospitality businesses to succeed, required by the sector. It provides a basis for progression into a broad range of roles within the sector when supported by relevant qualifications at level 2, such as GCSE English and mathematics, and/or at level 3, such as A levels in Biology or Business Studies, a vocational qualification in cookery, food service or health and social care, or food hygiene or health and safety qualifications at Level 2 or 3. Learners have some opportunity to study in more depth a range of option areas of their choice, including:
• understanding nutrition in a range of different cuisines
• food and drinks service
• events management
• business enterprise and marketing
• accommodation operations
• personal and professional practice.