Scheme of work

These schemes of work are neither prescriptive nor exhaustive. The structure and organisation of schemes of work should reflect the needs of students and the particular approaches favoured by different institutions.

Although the duration of schemes of work have been indicated in weeks these are approximations and, work for the Portfolio may continue throughout the AS course. The examples listed below are included to assist you in planning your course. Although each one is written for a specific title it is possible to adapt them for different titles.

Example 1: art, craft and design

This scheme of work begins with an introductory course and encourages students to explore different media and techniques.

Duration    

6 weeks

Sketchbooks are used by students to record aspects of their lives and surroundings. They are encouraged to record their experiences in different ways, using a variety of media.

A taught course aimed at laying the foundations for future developments.

Students are introduced to a number of different ways of working including:

  • the importance of sketchbooks for researching and developing ideas
  • the importance of drawing for different purposes, exploring a range of drawing media
  • how to use a range of materials and techniques effectively and safely
  • how to use digital techniques purposefully and effectively
  • how to reference sources appropriately
  • how to select and present work effectively.

11 weeks

Students research and evaluate critical/contextual material related to their theme or starting point and use this to inform their own work. This may include visits to galleries and museums.

Students are provided with a number of starting points. They select one or two themes from which they develop ideas and produce work using different media.

Students choose to adopt one of two approaches, they either:

  • develop work for a single project exploring a variety of media and techniques

OR

  • develop more than one project using different media and techniques.

Portfolio contents

Students include one or more projects demonstrating their use, knowledge and understanding of different media and techniques. They may also include additional work produced during the course.

Example 2: art, craft and design

In this scheme of work students are introduced to a range of media, techniques and approaches based around the theme of the environment.

Duration    

16–18 weeks

Media-based course

Students are introduced to a number of different media and techniques

based on the following areas of study:

  • drawing and painting
  • printmaking
  • three-dimensional media
  • photography and digital media.

Students are encouraged to keep a workbook or sketchbook which includes drawings, colour studies, digital images and research into, and evaluation of, the work of artists, designers, craftspeople and photographers.

A project on the environment

Students are introduced to the project in a number of ways which may include:

  • meeting a local planner who explains how decisions are made about urban and rural developments and the influence of the general public on these decisions
  • being made aware of different architectural styles
  • being introduced to a number of relevant websites and to issues of sustainability and environmental responsibility
  • being introduced to different ways of recording aspects of the environment
  • taking them on location to study the local environment
  • making observational studies of their environment.

The students choose from a number of themes related to the environment including:

  • contrasting shapes, forms and structures
  • regeneration
  • architecture from different periods.

Portfolio contents

Students produce a single project based on their chosen area of study which includes examples of the use of different media. They may also include additional work to exemplify breadth of study throughout.

Example 3: art, craft and design

This scheme of work provides opportunities for expressive and design-based work. Students can produce work for two projects or develop one project in greater depth.

Duration    

8–9 weeks

Students keep sketchbooks to record observations and studies of work by artists and designers who have explored related themes.

Project 1

Project based on observations of the contrasting qualities of natural and manufactured forms.

Emphasis is placed on the importance of drawing as a means of recording information in a variety of ways, from making preliminary studies to finished working drawings.

The work is placed in context by exploring how other artists from different periods have recorded natural and manufactured forms.

Students then develop a number of ideas and finally produce a final outcome or outcomes in a medium or media of their choice.

8–9 weeks

Students are encouraged to keep a workbook or sketchbook which includes drawings, colour studies, digital images and research into their chosen area of study.

Project 2

This project requires students to work on a specific design brief. Students visit a local shopping mall. They make studies and take photographs of fast-food outlets.

They explore a range of options for design work associated with a fast-food outlet. Part of their research involves investigating corporate images used by well-known companies.

Students could explore examples of branding, packaging design, advertising, menus and/or façades of fast-food outlets.

Students produce their own designs for the fast-food outlet of their choice.

Portfolio contents

This includes two distinct projects with related work in sketchbooks.

Example 4: fine art

In this scheme of work students are introduced to research skills and how to independently develop ideas to form the foundation of later work.

Duration    

14–18 weeks

Introductory course

6–8 weeks

Students are introduced to aspects of the course including:

  • how to structure and organise sketchbooks
  • different ways of researching and investigating ideas through drawing, colour studies, photography and note taking
  • how to handle a range of two- and three-dimensional media for developing ideas
  • effective ways of exploring critical/ contextual materials
  • different ways of supporting work through the use of digital media
  • different ways of analysing and responding to the work of others
  • how to organise and present work effectively.

Individual project

8–10 weeks

Students are given a number of options including:

  • developing work based on their response to a personal issue, interest or concern
  • developing ideas explored in their sketchbooks
  • developing work in response to a theme provided by teaching staff.

Portfolio contents

Students include a single project which reflects a sustained and in-depth period of study. Examples of work selected from the introductory course are included which exemplify the development of particular skills.

Example 5: fine art

In this scheme of work students produce work for two projects and develop additional work from a life-drawing course. They can choose to produce work for one project in greater depth.

Duration    

8–9 weeks

Students prepare a workbook which includes examples of observational studies and exploration of critical/contextual material.

Project 1

Students are asked to respond to the theme of ‛Close-ups’. They carry out research in school, at home and on location.

They study how artists, photographers and filmmakers have used close-ups in their work.

Students finally develop and produce work in a choice of media, including:

  • drawing, painting and mixed-media
  • moving image
  • three-dimensional constructions.
8–9 weeks

Students undertake a series of classes in various aspects of life drawing.

Project 2

Students compile a collection of studies of people in their sketchbooks. They are asked to focus on specific themes including:

  • moving figures
  • figures in groups
  • figures relaxing.

A range of approaches is encouraged from the representational to the abstract. Students are encouraged to research and evaluate related work by other artists in a gallery, in books and on the internet.

Portfolio contents

Students include project work based on close-ups and the human figure. They may also include examples of life drawing selected from the life-drawing course.

Example 6: graphic communication

This represents one approach to graphic communication. Students have opportunities to produce two projects or develop one in greater depth.

Duration    

8–9 weeks

Introductory course

Students are introduced to the main conventions used in graphic design, including layout, text and image.

They are introduced to appropriate graphic software and learn about how to present their work effectively.

A project based on package design

Students investigate examples of contemporary and historical package design, making drawings, colour studies and taking photographs. They consider the relationship between the package, the product it contains and the consumer.

Students are provided with a list of products from which they select one. This forms the basis of their brief. They research appropriate examples and develop their own designs. This may involve using software to create images of three-dimensional forms and the construction of a number of mock-ups.

They produce a final package design and an evaluation of its effectiveness in meeting the requirements set out in the original brief.

8–9 weeks

Students are introduced to the concept of branding.

Students explore a range of cultural influences.

They learn how to research and evaluate critical /contextual material.

A project based on branding for a restaurant offering, for example, Turkish food

Students research local restaurants considering factors, such as typography, images, colours and textures. They make drawings and take photographs and/or video footage. They also investigate the foods and images related to aspects of Turkish culture.

Students explore ideas for a logo design that will identify the restaurant.

Students produce a final logo design and demonstrate its application which might include, façade, menu, webpage, livery etc.

Portfolio contents

The two projects, one based on Branding and the other based on Package Design are included. Additional materials from the introductory course may also be included.

Example 7: graphic communication

This scheme of work begins with an introductory course in which students are introduced to graphic techniques, including the use of digital media. Students develop work based on two widely used practical applications. Where applicable, gallery visits or talks, and visits to practitioners could be included to enrich and contextualise the students’ understanding.

Duration    

6–8 weeks

Students are introduced to aspects of the course including:

  • drawing for different purposes using a variety of media
  • typography
  • composition and layout
  • colour theory and the effective use of colour
  • effective use of digital media skills
  • web design
  • current practitioners.

Students are introduced to a range of applications of graphic communication including packaging, point of sale, exhibition work, corporate identity, advertising and target audience.

A project based on branding

Students investigate the theme of branding and collect, analyse and document suitable contextual examples. They also consider the impact of identity on the target audience.

Using a range of techniques, students develop ideas for a chosen company, carefully considering various applications including business cards, letterheads, livery and advertising.

6–8 weeks

Students investigate examples of graphics produced for advertising campaigns and methods of constructing mock-ups for packaging designs.

A project based on ideas for advertising

Students choose a product and develop promotional material for the company.

They investigate appropriate examples and document their findings.

Their work may include designs for packaging, leaflets and related web advertising.

Portfolio contents

Two distinct projects and supporting studies including experiments and reports on visits and exhibitions. In the first project, students should demonstrate their understanding of various aspects of graphic communication and the application of appropriate techniques. In the second, they should demonstrate further understanding of practical applications.

Example 8: textile design

This represents one approach to textile design.

Students are introduced to different textile techniques. They attend a workshop with a textile designer and produce work based on observations of organic objects and explore a theme related to a particular culture. They have opportunities to produce two projects or to develop one in greater depth.

Duration    

8–9 weeks

Students learn different techniques and how to develop sketchbooks. They also learn how to research and evaluate critical/contextual material.

Introductory project based on the exploration of colour and form

Students explore the nature of organic objects through drawing and colour studies. They consider how other artists and designers have explored colour and form. They experiment with dyes and produce textile constructions based on their observations.

8–9 weeks

A one-day workshop with a textile artist, who makes objects using wrapped and tied materials, results in students exploring similar techniques. Students investigate the work of other artists, designers and craftspeople who have worked in similar ways.

Project based on the study of Islamic design

Students research Islamic design during a visit to a local Mosque, in the school/college library and through the internet. Notes, drawings and colour studies are kept in a sketchbook.

Students make use of digital media for developing a range of ideas and experimenting with different colour combinations.

Final designs are developed and could include printed or dyed fabrics, wall hangings, domestic textiles, embroidered garments.

Portfolio contents

Students produce two projects based on the themes of Organic Objects and Islamic Design.

Additional materials produced during the workshop are included.

Example 9: textile design

In this scheme of work, students develop their ideas through introduction to a range of materials and techniques

Duration    

18 weeks

Introductory course

Through demonstrations and visits to relevant exhibitions, students are introduced to a wide range of textile techniques which might include:

  • exploring stitching to enrich the surface through hand and machine embroidery
  • variety of print techniques
  • applied fabrics, appliqué
  • weaving
  • quilting
  • photo-reactive surfaces
  • devoré
  • batik, tie dye and space dyeing
  • laser cutting
  • felting
  • pleating.

Students explore a range of materials such as:

  • fabrics
  • mixed media
  • recycled materials
  • plastics, papers
  • resistant materials.

Students are introduced to research techniques and use critical and contextual analysis to support the development of ideas.

Throughout the course students should learn how to

  • use a sketchbook effectively
  • select and present their work.

A project based on natural forms

Through project work, using a variety of techniques and materials, students develop their own ideas based on natural forms.

This may include:

  • leaves and trees
  • shapes in the landscape
  • strata
  • close-ups of plants and/or natural forms
  • shells and sea life
  • birds and insects
  • animals.

Ideas are developed in sketchbooks and/or on developmental sheets.

During visits to relevant exhibitions and/or museums, students document and analyse historical and contemporary examples.

Students should be encouraged to look at the work of relevant artists, designers and craftspeople who have been inspired by natural forms.

Portfolio contents

Students select work based on natural forms including evidence of the development of ideas informed by relevant contextual material using a range of materials, techniques and processes.

Example 10: three-dimensional design

This represents one approach to three-dimensional design. Students have opportunities to produce two projects or to develop one in greater depth.

Duration    

8–9 weeks

Students are introduced to ways of producing an effective sketchbook.

They learn about a range of materials, techniques and processes.

They learn how to research and evaluate critical/contextual material.

On a visit to a local museum, students document examples of Aztec design.

A project based on Aztec design

Students are introduced to different aspects of three-dimensional design. Their brief is to create a container which has been influenced by Aztec design. They produce a series of alternative designs before constructing their work.

Preparatory work is carried out in a sketchbook, which is used throughout the course for exploring media, techniques and processes, for developing ideas and for investigating critical/contextual material.

8–9 weeks

Students are introduced to the concept of public art.

They may be introduced to the constraints of public art and the notion of sustainability.

They need to consider the location and audience.

A project based on designing a sculpture to be located in a civic centre

Students visit a local civic centre. They make drawings and take photographs of the area, at different times, observing the way that light changes in the chosen location.

Students develop ideas for a sculpture designed to provide a focal point. They produce a scale model of their sculpture. They may use computer software to visualise how their sculpture would look in a specific location from different viewpoints.

Portfolio contents

Two- and three-dimensional work related to the two projects are included. Additional work from the introductory courses might also be included.

Example 11: three-dimensional design

This scheme of work starts with an introductory course that provides students with opportunities to explore a variety of media. They develop work for an extended project which develops their creative, practical and technical understanding of a chosen area of study.

Duration    

6 weeks

Introductory project

Students explore skills and techniques which underpin one or more areas of study.

Students record their evidence in a variety of forms and at various key stages of development in a sketchbook.

Students engage in a number of workshop activities which provide them with opportunities to explore a range of materials, techniques and processes related to their chosen area of study.

Students record the characteristics of different techniques, processes and properties of different materials through working drawings, models, maquettes, photographs and, where appropriate, annotation.

12 weeks

Extended project

Students select one or more of their previous investigations and further develop their creative, practical and technical understanding.

Students are given the opportunity to develop personal work informed by appropriate contextual references.

Students identify aspects of their work from the introductory project to explore into an outcome or outcomes relevant to their chosen area of study.

They review the work of artists or designers to inform their own work eg they could visit a museum or gallery.

Students develop their ideas based on a theme or brief and may consider audience, location or use.

Further exploration of chosen media including reviewing and refining ideas is presented through drawings, models, maquettes, test pieces, photographs and final outcome/s

Portfolio content

Two- and three-dimensional work related to the extended project are included. They may also include all or some of the work from the introductory project.

Example 12: three-dimensional design

A scheme of work which comprises one project based on product design. Students work in different media as they develop an investigation into producing a cover, case or container for transporting an object that is hand held or easy to carry.

Duration    

16–18 weeks

Students are introduced to different recording techniques which focus on line, structure, form, scale and perspective.

They learn how to research and evaluate critical/contextual material at different stages throughout the project.

The exploration of appropriate materials and techniques is documented.

Students are encouraged to use sketchbooks effectively and they are encouraged to record observations in meaningful annotation.

Product design project

Students research and evaluate existing hand-held objects or products and select one as the focus for their project.

They consider how the object can be transported and protected by covers, cases or containers.

By exploring a range of drawing techniques students familiarise themselves with the technical specification of their object and its function before developing a variety of design ideas.

Students review and refine their ideas by producing initial models, mock-ups, maquettes and/or working drawings before considering the characteristics of other suitable materials.

Further investigations into contextual references inform the design of the case, cover or container.

Students produce a number of working models or maquettes based on their investigations and produce a final outcome or outcomes.

Portfolio contents

Two- and three-dimensional work related to the project are included.

This may include working drawings and designs ideas, maquettes, models, mock-ups, working drawings and a final outcome or outcomes.

Example 13: photography

This scheme of work includes exploration of techniques and processes, critical/contextual material and project work.

Duration    

18 weeks

Introductory course

Students are introduced to the basics of photography including:

  • the use of cameras, film, lenses, filters and lighting
  • darkroom techniques, developing, printing, presentation, layout and mounting
  • safe working practices
  • aspects of digital media including appropriate use of the internet
  • researching and evaluating relevant critical/contextual material.

Through a series of exercises and short tasks they learn about:

  • viewpoints, composition, depth of field, aperture, shutter speed and capturing movement
  • the importance of colour, tone, shape, texture, pattern and form.

Students begin to compile a journal which includes technical and critical/contextual materials.

Documentary photography project

Students undertake research into the relationship between people and different environments, considering the impact that particular situations, lighting and colour can have in creating atmosphere and mood. They develop their own ideas for work, based on their observations. Students choose to work from one of the themes listed below:

  • sport
  • families
  • people at work.

They produce a photographic essay or film based on their observations.

In their investigation students include research and evaluations of critical/contextual examples related to their chosen theme. They also include reports on visits to photographic exhibitions, museums and galleries.

Thematic Project

Students respond to the theme of Growth and Decay from a personal perspective, developing work from various sources, such as still-life groups, rural and urban environments or contrasting images of new and old.

Portfolio contents

Two projects are included; a documentary photography project and a thematic project. Additional work from the introductory course may also be included.

Example 14: photography

This scheme of work begins with an introductory course in which students explore camera skills, image production and the selection of relevant contextual references. Projects may be approached digitally, traditionally or using a combination of both, depending on the resources available. It includes a second project, where the students are encouraged to respond personally to a brief. Gallery visits and talks from current practitioners and studies of their work may be used to enrich and contextualise the students’ understanding.

Duration    

6–8 weeks

Students are introduced to aspects of the course including:

  • organising work to present their findings effectively
  • different research techniques and analysis of relevant contextual material
  • technical aspects of photography including camera controls and image production
  • safe working practices
  • aspects of digital media
  • appropriate use of the internet.

Through a number of themed projects students learn about:

  • viewpoint and composition
  • shutter speed and aperture
  • the effects of varying light conditions on recording images
  • formal elements including colour, line tone, texture, pattern and form.

Students begin to compile a journal which contains evidence of critical/contextual work.

Introductory project based on the theme of patterns

Students research appropriate contextual references. Students look for and record examples of patterns in the built environment and in nature.

Students explore a range of skills which may include

  • production techniques
  • documenting and evaluating findings
  • camera controls
  • lighting
  • presentation.

Students are encouraged to develop a personal response to the theme and explore the theme further, where appropriate.

Workshops could be used to introduce the students to various aspects of photographic practice.

6–8 weeks

Students are introduced to photographic techniques (traditional and/or digital).

For example

  • camera skills
  • studio photography
  • image manipulation
  • genres.

The history of photography and the work of photographers could be considered.

For example

  • significant historical practitioners
  • current practitioners
  • genres
  • different uses of photography.

Gallery visits may be included.

Work and findings may be documented in a journal.

Project 2 on the theme of identity.

After individual research, students begin an investigation into how Identity can be represented photographically.

Various themes could be considered including

  • self-identity
  • gender
  • family
  • personal issues
  • cultural identity.

Students consider image quality in depth and further techniques are explored.

Students explore their ideas in a personal way informed by the work of others.

Portfolio contents

Students produce a journal which includes technical notes, reports on gallery visits and meaningful comments on the work of other photographers. Two projects, the first demonstrating increasing understanding of skills, and the second demonstrating the ability to make a sustained investigation leading to a personal response.