Type of Qualification

AQA - GCSE Art and Design - 3D Design



Course Content

In GCSE Three-Dimensional Design for KS4 you will learn how
to use specialist practical skills, including clay building, glazing, and throwing.

  • to produce ever-higher standards of work for final pieces, such as vases, masks, sculpture work, tiles, boxes, models and figures.
  • to gain a higher understanding of the Formal Elements used within Art
  • to develop critical appraisal and analysis in your work
  • to record ideas, make experiments, show analysis and produce outcomes through photography, drawing, clay testers, glaze testers and colour theory
  • to develop a subject specific vocabulary
  • to be able to discuss the work of designers, techniques and values of design to build upon your sketchbook skills and extend presentation techniques and recording work from your Art/Design lessons at KS3

The GCSE course lasts for five terms in KS4.

You will work on 2 projects over the first four terms called the Personal Portfolio (Unit 1). In class, we normally call this Controlled Assessment work. We will study the following in that time:

  • Artists, Designers, sculptors, ceramicists and architects are used as a starting point to gain insights to develop ideas
  • Produce work in a variety of 2D and 3D materials, such as printing, photography, pencil, acrylic paint, collage, watercolour paint, clay, plaster and collage.
  • Record through drawing and written annotation.
  • Present a final response based on your research to the topic given.

In your last term, you will be working on your exam task called the Externally Set Assignment (Unit 2). This is of a set of questions set by the exam board, of which one will be chosen to research and develop a personal response. This will be approximately 20 hours of preparatory work in lesson time followed by 10 hours usually over two days in an art or ceramic room to produce a final response. 

How is the course assessed?

How will you get your GCSE?:

Coursework – 60%

Exam – 40%

Controlled Assessment:

During the two year course students will learn techniques and processes based on a theme and/or artists. They will have guided starting points but independent work and research is encouraged for   students to develop a personal style.


The exam at the end of the course is a practical exam that consists of 20 hours of preparatory time and 10 hours (over two days) in the art room to produce the final outcome.

Where will this course take me?

Students can go on to study A level or BTEC Art and   Design. You could go into stage and set design, costume design, graphic design, architecture, interior design self-employment, art galleries or museums and teaching.




Ashby School Options information for Year 9 Students

December 2021 Dear Year 9 student and parents, We are so looking forward to welcoming you to Ashby School in August 2022 to complete your Key Stage 4 studies. As you know, you are able to choose some of the subjects you wish to study so, to help you make these choices, we are runn...

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Christmas Concert 2021

You can see some videos from the Christmas performance by clicking here ...

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Christmas Card Design Winners 2021


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Student Voice News

This half term, our student leadership team have been working fantastically hard. They have met with Mr Bellmore to work through the anti-bullying policy, where they provided some brilliant feedback moving forward. We have now created an Anti-Bullying action group who will meet with Mr Bellmore regu...

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Design Competition Finalist

A huge congratulations to former Ivanhoe College student, Megan Harris, who has made it through as a regional finalist for the Royal Mail’s –Heroes’ Stamp Design Competition 2021. Megan is one of only 120 young people to reach this stage of the competition, from a staggering 606,049 entr...

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