A guide to A Levels

Studying A Levels is just one of the options available to you after you have completed your GCSEs. Students usually choose to study A Levels because they know they want to go to university, however, A Levels are also useful if you plan on starting work instead of going to university, as they show employers that you are capable of studying at an advanced level.

Entry criteria

Our general entry criteria is 4 GCSEs at grade C or above plus Maths and English Language at grade 5 or above.

Subject specific entry criteria

Art and Design
GCSE grade C or above in an art based subject or an interview to show portfolio (these take place during enrolment).

Students will need GCSE Maths at grade 6 or higher.

Taking Double award Science? You will need at least BB.

Taking Triple Sciences? You will need at least a B in the science(s) you wish to study.

Computer Science
Either GCSE Maths at grade 6 or higher or GCSE Maths at grade 5 and GCSE Computing at grade C or higher.

English Language
GCSE English Language at grade 5 or higher.

English Literature
GCSE English Literature at grade C or higher.

GCSE Maths at grade 6 or higher.

Further Maths
Please discuss entry criteria for this subject with Maths department staff.

Modern Foreign Languages (French, German, Spanish)
GCSE grade C or above in language chosen or interview/task set by Modern Foreign Languages teacher.

Please note

Entry criteria can change without notice.

Choosing a subject pathway

Subject Pathways are designed with Higher Education and career progression in mind, grouping complementary subjects together to allow you to make informed subject choices. We offer 5 pathways in total.

Choosing the right subjects is a very important decision.   Although you will be expected to choose subjects from one pathway, if you are studying 4 A Level subjects, it is usually acceptable to choose one subject from a different pathway. 

You will need to consider your GCSE results, or predicted grades when you apply. If you have an interest in a particular higher education subject or career you should check to see what the requirements are before making your final choice of A Levels.

It is important to choose subjects that you have an aptitude for and an interest in, as success in studying A Levels requires both of these.

Download subject pathways document

See an example timetable

See list of all subjects offered at Newcastle Sixth Form College

Study programmes at Newcastle Sixth Form College

In September 2016, Newcastle Sixth Form College will offer two different A Level study programmes.

Students with an average point score of 5.4 and below will study 3 A Levels. Students with an average point score of 5.5 and above will study 4 A Levels (reducing to 3 in the second year of their 2 year programme).

Students will be assessed at the mid-point of their study in AS Level exams; however this does not mark the end of the year or the end of the course.

What is the point scoring system?

We allocate a point score to each of a student’s GCSE grades to determine whether they should study 3 or 4 A Level subjects in their first year
with us.


Student A achieves the following GCSE results:

French A
Science B
History B
English Literature B
Maths C

These grades would equate to the following points:

1 x GCSE at Grade A 7 points
3 x GCSEs at Grade B 18 points
1 x GCSE at Grade C 5 points

This student has a total point score of 30. This is divided by 5 (the number of GCSE grades at A* - C that a student must have to enrol with us) and leaves the student with an average point score of 6.

This student would be enrolled onto 4 A Level subjects.

How are A Levels graded?

For each A Level subject you take, you’ll receive a grade from A* to E. The entrance requirements for the university course you apply for will be expressed as either:
Grades: for example, AAB, BCC or CCC, or as UCAS tariff points.

How do these grades translate into university points?

See below for how your predicted A Level and AS Level grades translate into UCAS tariff points for entrance to university.


ASDAN AOPE - 8 points 

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