At KS3, all students have one hour of Computing each week. At KS4, students can opt to continue studying in the department with a choice of two courses, GCSE Computer Science and the Cambridge National in Creative iMedia. Both courses are continually developing to ensure they are up to scratch with the latest developments in the digital world. Read-on to find out more.
If the global pandemic has taught us anything, it’s the sheer importance of technology and global communication. What’s more, recent research by one of the UK’s biggest job search sites found that over 95% of job adverts have at least some mention of IT skills or abilities as a required or desired skill. We want all of our students to be fully prepared for the digital world that they face, feeling confident and assured in their own computing abilities.
KS3 Core Computing
In Year 7 students will study:
- IT Life Skills
- Microsoft Office Productivity
- Ethics & Technology
- iDEA.org Certificate
- Data Representation
- 3D Modelling
In Year 8 students will study:
- Hardware & Software
- Digital Graphics
- The CPU (Computer Brains)
- Micro Computing – Micro:Bits
- Block Coding – Scratch
- Coding For Games Design – Minecraft EDU
In Year 9 students will study:
- Python Programming
- Cyber Security
- Networks and Connections
- App Development
- Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence
- Business Enterprise
Our Computing Department is growing! We’re now offering GCSE Computer Science as an option for our students to study in KS4. GCSE Computer Science will be offered alongside OCR’s Cambridge National in Creative iMedia and students can opt to choose either course.
KS4 GCSE Computer Science
New to the academy for the 2023-24 school year is GCSE Computer Science. Computer Science is a super technical course covering the ins and outs of everything computer-y. Students who choose to study this course should have a real interest in computing, technology and most importantly, learning how to program. Throughout the course, students will cover a wide range of content, from the workings of a processor, to creating networks to programming in Python.
The course is split up into two equally weighted components, each examined with a terminal paper based exam, sat at the end of Year 11 alongside core GCSE’s.
Component 1: Computer Systems
- Von Neumann architecture and the CPU
- RAM, ROM and Storage
- Network Hardware, Connections and Performance
- Security Threats, Hacking and Cyber Warfare
- System Software, Operating Systems and Utilities
- Ethical Issues – Rise of the Machines?!
Component 2: Computational Thinking
- Python Programming
- Computational Algorithms
- Logic Calculations
- Data Representation
- Data Types
KS4 Creative iMedia
Completely revamped for the 2022-23 school year Creative iMedia is our hands on, creative approach to the world of IT. Students who study this course will learn imperative transferrable skills for success in their other subjects, higher education, and the world of employment & business. Students will have a solid knowledge of professional software packages from Microsoft, Adobe, Sony and more, on top of a huge variety of general computer skills that will set them apart from competing applicants.
Students will study 2 units of coursework (worth 30% each) and the content for 1 exam (Making up the final 40%).
Unit 1 – Create a Visual Identity
In this unit, students will learn how to create professional quality digital graphics. Working to a brief, students will design, conceptualise, and create a piece of digital graphic artwork, utilising the latest software from Adobe including Photoshop, Fireworks, and Illustrator. In the build up to the project, students will enhance their research and report writing skills, exploring target audience influences, legislation, files & formatting and computer hardware and software.
Unit 2 – Creating Interactive Products
In this unit, students will learn how to create professional quality interactive products such as Applications and Animations. Working to a brief, students will research, review, plan, create, and export a fully functioning interactive product. Beginning by exploring development software, students will go on to develop digital assets such as graphics, buttons and digital media. In the build up to their project, students will develop further their general IT abilities, utilising Microsoft office software, conducting internet research and understanding the laws and legislation surrounding the use of IT.
Unit 3 – Exam
Students will study a range of content assessed by the exam, this includes:
- Planning and timekeeping skills
- Hardware and Software
- File types, formatting, and compression
- IT related health and safety
- Pre-production skills
- General IT skills and functions