AS Levels


Advanced Subsidiary (AS) Level

Discover an exciting opportunity to continue your 12 th year of education by completing an AS course.

DBS offers 7 subjects for AS Level, aimed at providing a breadth of study to learners. Geography, Arabic, Mathematics, Biology, Physics, English Literature and Physical Education are recognised by the Ministry of Education and Higher Education as fulfilling their Attestation and Equivalency requirements for a student’s 12 th year of education. A student would need passes in any 2 AS subjects (excluding Arabic).

Edexcel, formally known as Pearson Edexcel – LondonExaminations, is the official examination board for AS Level at DBS, with written examinations scheduled in June.

Why take AS Level?

  • It is a qualification suitable for Qatar’s domestic education system where Y12 graduation is a requirement.
  • It develops you intellectually as you explore a combination of the subject areas in greater depth.
  • It makes university courses accessible.
  • It offers acceptable qualifications for most jobs.
  • It strengthens your CV and the value of your academic qualifications.
  • It is suitable for university applications to the US and Canada where only 12 years of study is required.

Requirements :

  • 5 A* - C grades at IGCSE including English and Mathematics
  • B grade or higher in the subject to be studied
  • Average attendance of 95% over the academic year

Student Involvement at DBS Sixth Form

Part of the Sixth Form requirement at DBS is that every student embraces holistic learning by taking part in a variety of creative, active and service activities commonly known as CAS. AS students are encouraged to partake in a variety of events such as supporting local good causes, helping at school parent evenings, creating displays and being active through sport.

The teachers are able to keep in regular contact via the online platform Managebac. This forum allows teachers to post work and assignments and students to submit work and questions. This can also be viewed by parents at home. Managebac plays a crucial role in communicating academic and non-academic matters with our students.

Beyond DBS: University and Careers

All Sixth Form students are offered university and career guidance during their course. They receive information on how to apply to a variety of international universities, and will have the opportunity to meet university representatives both in school and at different fairs around Doha. Many universities require AS students to complete a foundation year of study before beginning an undergraduate degree, and since admission deadlines fall between January and March, a lot of time is spent in Term 1 preparing students for the application process.

Content overviews


Students will be expected to demonstrate and apply the knowledge, understanding and skills described in the content for each of these topics:

  • Topic 1: Biological Molecules
  • Topic 2: Cells, Viruses and Reproduction of Living Things
  • Topic 3: Classification and Biodiversity
  • Topic 4: Exchange and Transport

In addition, they will be expected to analyse, interpret and evaluate a range of scientific information, ideas and evidence using their knowledge, understanding and skills. To demonstrate knowledge, students should be able to undertake a range of activities, including the ability to recall, describe and define, as appropriate. To demonstrate understanding, students should be able to explain ideas and use their knowledge to apply, analyse, interpret and evaluate, as appropriate. Core practicals will be assessed by examination.

Each topic begins with an overview of the wider biological context designed to encourage an overarching approach to both the teaching and learning of the subject. As such, it will not be directly assessed. There are opportunities for students to develop mathematical skills throughout the content. They are required to apply the skills to relevant biology contexts. In order to be able to develop their skills, knowledge and understanding in science, students need to have been taught, and to have acquired competence in, the appropriate areas of mathematics relevant to the subject. These skills will be applied in the context of Biology and will be developed throughout the course. The relevant mathematical skills will be assessed within the lifetime of the qualification.


This qualification aims to develop students’ understanding of mathematics and mathematical processes in a way that promotes confidence and fosters enjoyment; to develop abilities to reason logically and recognise incorrect reasoning, to generalise and to construct mathematical proofs, and to extend their range of mathematical skills and techniques and use them in more difficult, unstructured problems.

From studying this course students will develop an understanding of coherence and progression in mathematics and of how different areas of mathematics can be connected and also come to recognise how a situation may be represented mathematically and understand the relationship between ‘real-world’ problems and standard and other mathematical models and how these can be refined and improved.

By the end of this course it is expected that students will be able to use mathematics as an effective means of communication, read and comprehend mathematical arguments and articles concerning applications of mathematics. Additionally, students will also acquire the skills needed to use technology such as calculators and computers effectively, recognise when such use may be inappropriate and be aware of limitations and develop an awareness of the relevance of mathematics to other fields of study, to the world of work and to society in general. Students will take increasing responsibility for their own learning and the evaluation of their own mathematical development throughout the course.


Students are required to convey their understanding of written Arabic through a series of reading tasks. They also need to draw upon and apply their knowledge of Arabic language, grammar and lexis to produce a short translation from Arabic into English, as well as demonstrate an ability to manipulate Arabic language in continuous writing. Students will be expected to recognise and use Arabic in a variety of contexts and in relation to the following general topic areas: youth culture and concerns; lifestyle: health and fitness; the world around us; travel, tourism, environmental issues and the Arabic-speaking world; education and employment.

Students are required to demonstrate skills in advanced level Arabic reading and in the transfer of meaning from English into Arabic. To promote research and a greater knowledge and understanding of Arabic culture and/or society, students must produce two Arabic-language essays in response to questions related to their chosen topic(s) and/or text(s).

Students will be expected to recognise and use Arabic in a variety of contexts and in relation to the following general topic areas: youth culture and concerns; lifestyle: health and fitness; the world around us; travel, tourism, environmental issues and the Arabic-speaking world; education and employment; customs, traditions, beliefs and religions; national and international events: past, present and future; literature and the arts.

English Literature

The aims of the Edexcel AS in English Literature are to develop students’ interest in, and enjoyment of, literature and literary studies as they: read widely and independently set texts and others that they have selected for themselves; engage creatively with a substantial body of texts and ways of responding to them; develop and effectively apply their knowledge of literary analysis and evaluation in speech and writing; explore the contexts of the texts they are reading and others’ interpretations of them; and deepen their understanding of the changing traditions of literature in English.

This Advanced Subsidiary and Advanced GCE specification requires students to use their detailed knowledge and understanding of individual works of literature to explore relationships between texts and to appreciate the significance of culture and contextual influences upon readers and writers. Students will show knowledge and understanding of a range of literary texts and include at least two examples of each of the genres of prose. They will study poetry and drama across the course as a whole, and experience a wide range of reading in poetry, prose and drama that must include at least one play by Shakespeare, work by at least one author writing between 1300 and 1800, at least one work first published or performed after 1990 and, for AS, work by at least one author published between 1800 and 1945.

For AS, students must show knowledge and understanding of: the functions and effects of structure, form and language in text; some of the ways in which individual texts are interpreted by different readers; and some of the ways in which texts relate to one another and to the contexts in which they are written and read.

Physical Education

Unit 1: Participation in Sport and Recreation

The unit content is divided into two sections, with each section outlining the specific knowledge and understanding required by the student. The first section will develop the student’s knowledge and understanding of what constitutes a healthy and active lifestyle. Students will investigate how the body responds and adapts to exercise, the components of physical and skill fitness and different methods of fitness training. The rationale behind carrying out fitness assessments and the protocols associated with recognised fitness tests will also be considered. The second section encourages the student to develop their knowledge and understanding of how competitive sport has developed over time. They will learn how a lifelong involvement in sport is encouraged.

Unit 2: The Critical Sports Performer

The fundamental aim of this unit is to engage participants in four tasks. These tasks will offer a framework of opportunities to develop practical experiences and conduct independent research into the structure, provision and analysis of physical activity. Students will have the chance to offer two performances from a choice of three roles (player/participant, leader and official) recording their performance over a period of time. They will then undertake a study into the provision for all three roles at a local level, followed by a study of the provision for one role at the national level. Lastly, they will produce an analysis of their performance relating to at least one of the activities offered in the first task.

Unit 3: Preparation for Optimum Sports Performance

Students will develop a knowledge and understanding of the short- and long-term physiological and psychological preparations made by elite athletes. They will consider the short- and long-term technical preparations required, eg selection of appropriate kit and equipment, the use of training camps, different types of ergonomic aids.

Unit 4: The Developing Sports Performer

The tasks undertaken in Unit 2: The Critical Sports Performer lay the foundation for students to specialise in one practical performance role and progress this performance, and undertake three further tasks. Students will construct a development plan to further progress their performance as player/ participants, leaders or officials. They will also research one of these roles in an international context, taking in grassroots participation, elite performance and other factors. Students will then continue to refine their performances in one chosen role. Lastly, they will plan their life in physical activity, from the Advanced Subsidiary course to the potential opportunities and performance structure open to them, thereby outlining a ‘time line’, through school, college, university, club, veterans and future roles.


Unit 1: Global Challenges

Students begin by studying the meaning, causes, impacts and management of global challenges, whilst looking at how we can influence global challenges through our own lives. There are two compulsory topics that form this unit:

  • Topic 1: World at Risk
  • Topic 2: Going Global

Unit 2: Geographical Investigations

A closer look at how physical and human issues influence lives and can be managed. Students choose two topics from the four offered in this unit; there must be one physical and one human topic.

Physical topics:

  • Topic 1: Extreme Weather, with its increasing ferocity and frequency, fascinates some people and threatens many others.
  • Topic 2: Crowded Coasts reveals how increasing development is testing our ability to manage these valued environments.

Human topics:

  • Topic 3: Unequal Spaces explores the causes and consequences of rural and urban disparities and how to manage them.
  • Topic 4: Rebranding Places focuses on how we need to re-image and regenerate rural and urban places, using appropriate strategies.

Unit 3: Contested Planet

The use and management of resources is a key issue for geography in today’s world. Consumption patterns highlight stark inequalities between regions, countries and groups of people. Many resources are finite, and rising consumption means that difficult decisions over the use of resources will have to be taken more frequently. There are six compulsory topics:

  • Topic 1: Energy Security
  • Topic 2: Water Conflicts
  • Topic 3: Biodiversity Under Threat
  • Topic 4: Superpower Geographies
  • Topic 5: Bridging the Development Gap
  • Topic 6: The Technological Fix?

Unit 4: Geographical Research

Options range from those with a strong physical geography focus, to those concerned more with environmental, social and cultural geographies. Students must select and study one of the following research options:

  • Option 1: Tectonic Activity and Hazards
  • Option 2: Cold Environments – Landscapes and Change
  • Option 3: Life on the Margins – the Food Supply Problem
  • Option 4: The World of Cultural Diversity
  • Option 5: Pollution and Human Health at Risk
  • Option 6: Consuming the Rural Landscape – Leisure and Tourism.


The AS Physics course gives you the opportunity to further develop the skills gained during Key Stage 4. During the year, you will focus on 5 main topic areas, the first of which is “Working as a Physicist”, which covers the basic ideas of how to be successful as a physicist. This is followed by “Mechanics”, “Electric Circuits”, “Materials”, then finally “Waves and Particle Nature of Light”. Each topic is designed to help and guide you to becoming a well-rounded physicist ready for working or studying in many fields in the future.