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graphic design, textiles, photography GCSEs - advice please

(24 Posts)
tryingreallytrying Sun 09-Mar-14 09:00:52

DD has to choose GCSE options - she thinks (at the moment, but this does change every week - last week she wanted to be a doula) that she wants an arty job "because she doesn't want to do anything academic". She is good at art - and also good at academics, despite her current downer on all things academic. She is not organised or hardworking, at least at the moment - maybe that will change as it gets nearer exams that matter?

So - she's thinking of doing Graphic Design (which I agree with and which her teacher asked her to do as she is v good at it) but for her final option is considering Textiles or Photography just because she doesn't know what else to do. I'd like her to consider Latin and she was also looking at Computing (but she/we know nothing about coding at all - she likes playing games on the computer, and social media, but they don't do a GCSE in that yet!). Or possibly IT though she worries it's not well-thought of. But she does seem to enjoy the homework.

So - would she be mad to do 2 arts subjects in terms of workload? I'd like her to stick to 1 so she has enough time to also do sufficient work on her academic subjects, so she leaves those doors open if she changes her mind in career terms. But then none of the other options are exciting her either at the moment - do you need a passion for computing to do well in it? And is IT a waste of time or not, and how heavy is the workload?


tryingreallytrying Sun 09-Mar-14 09:02:54

And she does want to do Arts A Levels and go on to Art College, will just having a Graphic Design GCSE be enough at this level?

tryingreallytrying Sun 09-Mar-14 09:03:11

And if she wants...

tryingreallytrying Sun 09-Mar-14 09:08:43

How many hours work do any of the arts gcses require per week, do you think?

Orangeanddemons Sun 09-Mar-14 09:11:53

I teach Textiles. Loads do lots of arts based subjects and cope fine. I have several doing Art, Textiles and Drama

bigTillyMint Sun 09-Mar-14 09:14:08

DD does Art-textiles (embellishing fabrics) and whilst she does enjoy it, it is incredibly time-consuming. She does drama too, but I don't think that takes up so much time!

tryingreallytrying Sun 09-Mar-14 09:23:27

How many hours a week do you think is typical to spend on an arts gcse?

On another thread, someone suggested coursework etc for art gcses took up 7 hours a week - if dd did two, that would be 14 hours a week, which would absolutely floor her. Is this really true?

tryingreallytrying Sun 09-Mar-14 09:57:36

Bumping desperately.

monikar Sun 09-Mar-14 11:07:43

My DD did textiles gcse. Year 10 was very light as they were supposed to be preparing for the coursework task but that didn't really happen. Year 11 was heavy with the coursework in the second term particularly. DD did the 'Welsh board' which meant that the task was supposed to take 30 hours to complete and this was timed at school. The task was making a product and also making a 'book' which had enormous amounts of detail and drawing - most of this had to be hand-written. This was to take 30 hours in school time, but the reality was that a huge amount of preparation had to be done at home to enable the time at school to be used effectively. Many evenings per week in the second term were spent on this preparation. I didn't time her at home, but I would say that 7 hours a week sounds fairly accurate.

Also, DD used a lot of her break and lunchtimes at school to work on the coursework as it wasn't allowed to come home. On the one hand, at least it was being done in school hours, but it also meant that at the end, when there were revision sessions in other subjects, she had to prioritise her textiles over revision sessions she would have benefitted from.

Orangeanddemons Sun 09-Mar-14 11:17:54

My guide as a teacher is 2 hours per week as homework. It is controlled assessment, so most of it has to be done in school anyway.

creamteas Sun 09-Mar-14 12:12:43

DS3 is doing photography GCSE, and he is not finding the workload difficult.

But photography was an existing hobby, so all that has happened is that his regular trips to take photos are now linked to his GCSE.

AtiaoftheJulii Sun 09-Mar-14 16:59:41

My dd2 is in y11 doing Textiles. Y10 was as monikar says, fairly light. This year they are doing their project piece - which is in school, though probably a couple of hours (nowhere near 7) work on 'the book' at home each week. And she's just had her exam for it, which was a 10 hour practical exam at school (over 2 days) producing another piece - they got their prompt 6 weeks earlier and she spent 2-3 hours each week working on the research, planning etc for that. But now all she's doing is finishing off her project piece, adding final embellishments to her sketchbook, and once that's done, that's it, and their Textiles teacher has said they can do any revision they like in her lessons once they're finished.

The vast majority who do practical subjects at her school only do one, but there's a significant minority who do two, and they had one practical exam one week and the other the next. I think my dd would have struggled doing two, but she's not a naturally arty type - if it came easier, it would have been ok perhaps.

tryingreallytrying Sun 09-Mar-14 17:24:32

Thanks. Very helpful.

Any more views?

crazymum53 Sun 09-Mar-14 17:26:01

Depends if Graphic design counts as an Art subject or do you mean Graphic products which is another DT subject.
We have been informed that Photography and Art have a lot of overlap so you are not allowed to take both subjects at GCSE.
Similarly if Graphics is a DT subject there would be some overlap with Textiles so Photography may add more breadth. HTH

lljkk Sun 09-Mar-14 17:32:28

coding is puzzle solving using logical rules (but someone else's logic that you have to learn, not your own logic). Does she like sudoku or word search puzzles?

tryingreallytrying Sun 09-Mar-14 17:50:36

They're all Art subjects not DT at dd's school.

Kez100 Sun 09-Mar-14 17:53:42

My daughter got into a dedicated art college at 16 with no art GCSE at all. So, it can be done with personal work if the student is good enough and a passionate interview. That said, I wouldn't encourage that plan and with Graphics she will already have one art under her belt for their entry requirements.

I don't see an issue with taking a second art if she is good at them. Equally, another academic would be good but no point if she isn't going to love taking them.

mummytime Sun 09-Mar-14 18:09:38

Well my DD is doing Photography, and is doing a lot of course work. She stays behind fairly regularly to keep up with course work.
Her friend who is doing both Photography and Textiles is sinking under the load. She has to put so much time into the Textiles that she struggles to find the extra time for Photography.

My DS studied Graphic Design and Product Design, in the end he pretty much dropped the Graphic Design as he just couldn't justify all the extra work needed for that with his other GCSE needs.

These project subjects do need a lot of course work.

I would think Graphic Design is enough for most Art courses. Is your DD doing a Humanity? A Language? Computing is fairly straight forward if she can think logically. It is pretty straight forward, and better than doing something which needs a lot of work outside of lessons.

tryingreallytrying Sun 09-Mar-14 18:25:33

Thanks - I agree. She's been in trouble this year for getting behind in her work, so deliberately choosing subjects with the heaviest workload seems perverse. She hates homework or any infringement on her personal time. And whilst she's quite artistic, she's not passionate about it as some are - it's more that she isn't very motivated by academic subjects at the moment! But that seems a negative reason for choosing a heavy workload subject.

tryingreallytrying Sun 09-Mar-14 19:43:09

Bumpy bump...

MaddAddam Sun 09-Mar-14 19:56:13

My yr9 dd is choosing options and has put down Art and Graphic Design. She's reasonably academic but those two subjects are her best subjects, and she spends a lot of her free time doing arty crafty DT-type activities so I'm hoping the workload fits with her natural interests.

tryingreallytrying Sun 09-Mar-14 20:53:40

Ah, then it makes sense. sad

dd used to enjoy arty stuff but now her natural 'hobbies' seems to involve watching boxsets on dvd, WhatsApping her mates and worrying about how she looks. But sadly, none of those translate readily into GCSE options. sad

Nocomet Sun 09-Mar-14 21:33:12

If you draw, paint, sew, knit, felt and/or mess about with wire and beads to relax art or textiles are ok.

If you don't stear clear.

We already had a houseful of felt, card, wire and acrylic paints, so art hasn't been too bad until the last couple of weeks and prep of a 10 hr exam.

I'm certainly not sure me or DD could cope with another full on practical subject. She does a bit of out of hours stuff for drama, but it's nothing like the lunch times spent in the art room.

MillyMollyMama Sun 09-Mar-14 23:42:11

What about Art?. Can she not do plain old Art? That leaves every option open for the 6th form art subject choices. Higher Education Art courses like Art at A level plus another Art specialism, eg photography, textiles, graphic design. However, Art A level can include textiles and photography.

Drama students work very hard in year 11 to devise their performance, stage it and learn it. That is when the really hard work comes in. Can be stressful.

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