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GCSE Composing

For more information and advice contact momalley@tiffin.kingston.sch.uk

Instructions for Completing GCSE Composing Coursework

Each student submits two compositions:

Composition 1: Free Composition

  • In April, in the year of examination (Year 11), each student submits one final, free* composition (*meaning that the style and content may be determined by the student).
  • In Year 10, each student completes a number of draft compositions (normally one each term).
  • Each draft composition is in a different style, each using different pastiche* compositional techniques (*conventions developed and established by leading composers of their era or genre). The styles and techniques are set and taught by the teacher.
  • The draft compositions may include: 1. Theme and Variations, 2. Musical Theatre / Pop Song, 3. Jazz / Minimalism
  • In Year 11, each student is encouraged to select one draft composition to be developed into their final, free composition. (Students may select from drafts completed in class or from those composed in their free time).
  • The duration of each final composition must be at least 1 min 30 sec.
  • It is strongly advised that the duration of each final composition does not exceed 5 minutes. Quality not quantity counts: long compositions are often boring.

Composition 2: Composition to a Brief

  • In April, in the year of examination (Year 11), each student submits one final composition written to a brief set by Edexcel.
  • On 1st September in the year of examination (Year 11), Edexcel sets four composition briefs.
  • Each brief is based on a different area of study: 1. Instrumental Music, 2. Vocal Music, 3. Music for Stage and Screen, 4. Fusions
  • Each student chooses one brief on which to compose.
  • Students are encouraged to use the compositional techniques they have learned in Year 10. Students may select one draft composition / ideas from one draft composition to be developed into their final composition to a brief.
  • The duration of each final composition must be at least 1 min 30 sec.
  • It is strongly advised that the duration of each final composition does not exceed 5 minutes.

Instructions for Submitting GCSE Composing Coursework

Each candidate must submit the following items to the examiner:

  • The composition authentication sheet can be found here.
  • You must sign the Candidate's Declaration on Page 1
  • For Composition 1 (Free Composition) you must complete the TITLE, COMPOSITION LENGTH and OUTLINE OF COMPOSITION on Page 2.
  • For Composition 2 (Set Brief Composition) you must complete the TITLE, COMPOSITION LENGTH and CIRCLE THE CHOSEN BRIEF.
  • If, before the deadline, you wish to change information on the form you have submitted, you must print, complete and submit a new form.
  • The form should be submitted as an A3 booklet. (If this is not possible, the form may be submitted on A4 with a corner staple).
  • *A composition authentication sheet is required only for the final submission. Draft compositions must be correctly labelled and available to view in your Tiffin Noteflight account.

Two printed, stapled scores*, one for each composition.

Each score must be labelled as follows:

  • Composition NUMBER (1 or 2), TITLE (e.g. Theme and Variations) and BRIEF (e.g. Area of Study 3)
  • Pupil NAME, CANDIDATE NUMBER and CENTRE NUMBER (Tiffin Centre 14429)

E.g. Composition 1: Variations on a Theme by Mozart (Free Composition) Joe Bloggs Candidate 1234 Centre 14429

E.g. Composition 2: Stop All The Clocks (Brief 2 Vocal Music) John Smith Candidate 1234 Centre 14429

  • For the purposes of marking, no other composition may be labelled 'Composition 1' or 'Composition 2' in your Noteflight account.
  • If your composition is incorrectly labelled, it will not be marked.
  • *Printed scores are required only for the final submission. Draft compositions must be correctly labelled and available to view in your Tiffin Noteflight account.

Two mp3 audio files*, one for each composition.

  • These mp3s may be recorded live or generated by noteflight. If using noteflight, go to Menu > Score > Export > mp3 Audio.
  • Each audio file must be labelled as follows: SURNAME, FIRSTNAME Composition NUMBER (1 or 2)
  • Each audio file must be uploaded to the Composing Coursework folder found on the Year 11 Coursework webpage.
  • Protect your work from being deleted: Right-Click or Alt-Click > Advanced > Specific People Can Access > Remove pupil access.
  • *Audio files are required only for the final submission. Draft compositions must be correctly labelled and available to view in your Tiffin Noteflight account.

GCSE Composing Resources