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.

We are now offering a selection of AS Levels courses in Arabic, English Literature, Geography, Mathematics, Biology, Physics, Business Studies, Chemistry, Design Technology (DT) and PE. We are proud to be able to support our students who seek a twelfth year of study.

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 Language and Literature

The aims of the AS Level English Language and Literature qualification are to enable students to:

  • develop and apply their knowledge of literary analysis and evaluation
  • develop and apply their understanding of the concepts and methods appropriate for the analysis and study of language
  • use linguistic and literary approaches in their reading and interpretation of texts, showing how the two disciplines can relate to each other
  • engage creatively and critically with a wide range of texts
  • explore the ways in which texts relate to each other and the contexts in which they are produced and received
  • develop their skills as producers and interpreters of language

Students will, over the course of the year, read and explore a range of non-fiction and literary texts, applying a range of literary and linguistic concepts to enable them to develop valid and perceptive interpretations. They will consider contextual factors and explore the ways that texts’ meanings are shaped by their production and reception. Students will study one Shakespeare text and one post 1900s text, as well as an anthology of texts such as speeches, reviews and historical accounts. The course is demanding but rewarding and students who undertake this qualification must be prepared to read widely and work independently to further their skills and knowledge.

The qualification is awarded after students have sat two examinations which test their skills of creativity, analysis and response to texts.

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.

Business Studies

This qualification encourages students to use an enquiring, critical and thoughtful approach to the study of core business concepts and applying them to business contexts to develop a broad understanding of how businesses work. Students will recognise that business behaviour can be studied from a range of perspectives and to challenge assumptions.

The course is assessed through 3 external written exams, with each exam tackling a different focus:

  • Paper 1: Marketing, people and global businesses (worth 35%)
  • Paper 2: Business activities, decisions and strategy (worth 35%)
  • Paper 3: Investigating business in a competitive environment (worth 30%)


The AS Chemistry course gives you the opportunity to further develop the skills gained during Key Stage 4. Students will be expected to demonstrate and apply the knowledge, understanding and skills described in the content for each of these topics:

  • Topic 1: Atomic Structure and the Periodic Table
  • Topic 2: Bonding and Structure
  • Topic 3: Redox I
  • Topic 4: Inorganic Chemistry and the Periodic Table
  • Topic 5: Formulae, Equations and Amounts of Substance
  • Topic 6: Organic Chemistry I
  • Topic 7: Modern Analytical Techniques I
  • Topic 8: Energetics I
  • Topic 9: Kinetics I
  • Topic 10: Equilibrium I

Practical skills are developed through core practical activities which are assessed by examination. Mathematical skills are also developed through the content to apply them to relevant chemistry context.

The course is assessed through 3 external written examinations:

  • Paper 1: Core Inorganic and Physical Chemistry 50% of final grade
  • Paper 2: Core Organic and Physical Chemistry 50% of final grade

Design & Technology (Product Design)

The key aim of this new qualification is to enable students to:

Use creativity and imagination when applying iterative design processes to develop and modify designs, and to design and make prototypes that solve real world problems, considering their own and others’ needs, wants, aspirations and values.

Students will be able to integrate and apply their understanding and knowledge from Key Stage 4, with a focus on mathematics and science for analysis and informing decisions in design, whilst being open to taking design risks which show innovation and enterprise.

The Pearson Edexcel Level 3 Advanced Subsidiary GCE in Design and Technology (Product Design) consists of one externally-examined paper and one non-examined assessment component.

Component 1: Principles of Design and Technology (Paper code: 8DT0/01)
Written examination: 2 hours
50% of the qualification
100 marks

Content overview

  • Topic 1: Materials
  • Topic 2: Performance characteristics of materials
  • Topic 3: Processes and techniques
  • Topic 4: Digital technologies
  • Topic 5: Factors influencing the development of products
  • Topic 6: Effects of technological developments
  • Topic 7: Potential hazards and risk assessment

Assessment overview

  • The paper includes calculations, short-open and open-response questions. as well as extended-writing questions focused on:
  • Analysis and evaluation of design decisions and outcomes, against a technical principle, for prototypes made by others
  • TAnalysis and evaluation of wider issues in design technology, including social, moral, ethical and environmental impacts.
  • Students must answer all questions.

Component 2: Independent Design and Make Project (Paper code: 8DT0/02)
Non-examined assessment
50% of the qualification
100 marks

Content overview

  • Students are required to analyse a given contextual challenge on an individual basis. Selecting a problem to focus on, they develop a range of potential ideas and then realise one through practical making activities.
  • Students will develop a range of potential solutions which include the use of computer aided design and evidence of modelling.
  • Students will realise one potential solution through practical making activities.
  • Students will incorporate issues related to sustainability and the impact their prototype may have on the environment.
  • Students are expected to analyse and evaluate design decisions and outcomes for prototypes/products made by themselves and others.
  • Students are expected to analyse and evaluate of wider issues in design technology, including social, moral, ethical and environmental impacts.