Art History for Everyone:
student information and applications
Art History Link-Up, a registered charity, is offering free taught Art History Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) and A level courses for state maintained sector students in museums and galleries on term-time Saturdays.
From late September 2019, students will study for a taught Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) – which is the equivalent to half an A level in UCAS points and very well regarded by university admission officers – at the Wallace Collection or the National Gallery.
The EPQ can be an essay or also any number of creative endeavours, for example a performance, film, app, or collaborative project. Two modules of the A level course, including visual analysis of painting, sculpture and architecture, will be taught alongside the EPQ. It is possible to submit more than one EPQ which is equivalent of up to half an A level in UCAS points. And for the EPQ to be a film, performance, app, collaborative project, or a wide range of creative endeavours as part of a taught subject course. An EPQ increases other A level results, and the odds of A*-B by 29%. Find out more here. Students will be supported throughout.
All places are offered at no charge to state maintained sector sixth form students, with priority to candidates from a widening participation background, and to those with aptitude and ability for the course. Application usually opens online in the early summer for a September start.
Students are offered access to work experience at institutions including Art UK, the Royal Collection and the Victoria & Albert Museum, in addition to advice on FE/HE applications and careers, and membership of an alumni club. Students have the option to study a further two modules and sit the A level exam at the end of the second year.
Benefits for students:
- Courses taught by experienced teachers in dedicated teaching space with close access to the collections, and with visits to other museums and galleries arranged as appropriate to the topics being studied.
- Access to careers/FE seminars; work experience placements include the Victoria & Albert Museum, the Royal Collection, ArtUK, HENI Talks and more
- EPQ/homework club, with snacks, plus EPQ and careers mentoring, and membership of alumni club
- Students have the option of continuing to study a further two modules and sitting the Pearson/Edexcel A level Art History exam at the end of a second year of the course
- Additional qualification: EPQ equivalent to up to half an A-level in UCAS points; it is possible to enter more than one EPQ. Students with an EPQ are more likely to obtain a good degree and to attend a Russell Group University.
- The EPQ provides the thinking skills that HE/FE admissions staff are interested in and can be a film, performance, app, or any number of creative and collaborative endeavours.
- Students entering an EPQ do statistically better in their other results than those who do not: taking an EPQ increases the odds of achieving a high A level grade (A*-B) by 29%.
- Relevance and application for Art & Design students, at A level and beyond, and a wide range of other subjects
- Access to, familiarity with and understanding of, great works of art in the capital’s public collections: The course is structured around examples of art and architecture which can be experienced and studied at first-hand
- Exam entry, and other administration, is organised by Art History Link-Up. Study materials are included
Further information about Art History A level:
It is envisaged that the Wallace Collection course will run on Saturday mornings and the National Gallery course on Saturday afternoons. Topics studied at the Wallace Collection will be “Nature in Art and Architecture” and “Power and Persuasion: the Baroque in Catholic Europe 1597-1685”, and at the separate National Gallery course, “Identities in Art and Architecture” and “Invention and Illusion: The Renaissance in Italy 1420-1520”. Find out more about A level Art History here. Art History A level is currently only offered in a handful of state maintained sector schools, eight at the last count. Since 2016, students from over 40 different state schools studied Art History with us, learning alongside some of the greatest works of art in the world. Read what our students have to say below and here.
What students say:
“I love my Art History classes at AHLU, they’ve completely leveled up my Saturdays from being sit-arounds to something insanely productive and honestly valuable. It’s not a club, it’s quality education. Not only are we all bonding together voluntarily to learn something we love, we’re also in the heart of it at a location like The National Gallery. It’s not a simple opportunity, and the organisers and teachers take it upon themselves to make it the best experience for you. I can’t wait to continue for another year.“
“Coming to class every Saturday has made me feel more alive…. Studying for the EPQ has massively improved my analytical skills, which has benefited me in my A Levels, particularly English and History.“
“Being an AHLU student has changed my life, both as a student and as a person interested in art, and I couldn’t be more grateful to have been granted such an opportunity.Thank you!“
“I quit my Saturday job to be able to come to this course and I have no regrets.This course has changed my life and I’m totally in love with Art History.“
“I came into the programme not knowing what to expect, and I was completely blown away as to the breadth and depth of artists, cultures, movements and histories I have been exposed to. Likewise, the EPQ was a great opportunity for me to research artworks that I resonate with, and my mentor has helped me through the whole process….I know students taking EPQs at my school don’t have anything like this!“
“Art History has changed the way I view art, culture and the world around me. I am able to appreciate buildings, paintings and the works that previously would have been dismissed….Art History gives me a chance to study in-depth culture and history, which I am not able to do at school.The course has also informed my own work in art and inspired me to pursue an art foundation.“
“I had no idea that Art History was offered as an A level until this course was recommended to me, so just being able to have this opportunity is really important. Being able to head to London’s best galleries to learning inside their walls, and something completely new, and then to head out to put into a real life context is such an effective way to learn. I’ve been leaning French since Year 1 and until this day, at Y13 I still can’t speak it… But if you ask me to analyse a painting or describe the formal features of a sculpture/building, then I can talk for hours!”
“It is so refreshing that we are not taught with the sole purpose of doing well in an exam but because there is a shared interest and enthusiasm for Art History. It doesn’t feel like going to school on Saturdays: it is actually fun!”
“As someone who typically doesn’t enjoy school I really appreciate how very interesting and enjoyable this course has been: it has had me re-think further education as an option for me.”
“I don’t think I have enjoyed anything as much ever – it turned out to be a combination of all my passions and interest – art, ancient history and just learning!”
“This course has really opened my eyes and helped me to appreciate the incredible art heritage in our museums and galleries. The breadth and scope of the course equipped me with the skills and curiosity to continue in the world of Art History.”
“Art History really seems to have been the missing piece in my puzzle, combining my interests and opening my eyes to see the world around me differently each time I go outside. This course has without a doubt been the best opportunity I have been given, not only have I learnt vast amounts and will continue to do so, it has given me a focus and stability. This truly has been an immeasurably valuable experience.”
“You’ve helped transform me from an absolute novice to someone who can spot Classical references in buildings, talk about paintings with confidence, and an absolute Art History fan girl”
“The lessons changed the way I look and the way I think about art, and opened a whole new door for me, towards a subject I never dreamed I’d like this much and now will study at university!”
“Every week I look forward to our lessons at the National Gallery and can’t believe it has gone so quickly. It has not only helped to cement my aspirations of an art world career but given me a knowledge and enthusiasm which I will take with me in all my further studies and career, plus amazing opportunities, including meeting HRH The Prince of Wales and Simon Schama!”
Art History for Everyone at the National Gallery is generously supported by the National Gallery, the Rothschild Foundation, the Duke of Devonshire’s Charitable Trust, the Foyle Foundation, the Worshipful Company of Grocers’ and other supporters. Art History for Everyone at the Wallace Collection is generously supported by the Wallace Collection, the Band Trust and other supporters. Art History for Everyone is managed by Art History Link-Up.