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Computer Science and ICT

Subject Head: Martin Alsaigh

Contact: malsaigh@farmors.gloucs.sch.uk

KS3 Computer Science and ICT

Course Outline

During their first three years at Farmor’s all students will study Computer Science and ICT for two periods each week. Our aim is to “provide students with a challenging but engaging curriculum which addresses the needs of an ever changing world, leading to excellent employment opportunities”. At Farmor’s School, the Computing & IT department is reinventing itself, and is well into transforming a new curriculum that focuses on computer science, graphical communication and digital media. 

Over the course of 3 years, students will learn how to become independent problem solvers, logical and critical thinkers with an ability to recognise the impact technology has on society. Computing & IT will provide students with the necessary tools and skills that will allow them to become interactive users of technology as it develops. The table below sets out the structure of this Key Stage in more Detail.

Course Detail
Term 1 Term 2 Term 3 Term 4 Term 5 Term 6

7.1 Baseline Test

Students demonstrate subject knowledge and skills of Computing & IT

 

7.2 Microsoft Digital Literacy

Basic introduction to key Information Technology skills. Students will identify and present work with a given purpose and audience

 

7.3 E-Safety

Identify long term consequences of not being cyber-wise

7.4 What are Computers

Understand the key components that make up a computer system. Introduced to binary and ability to convert to denary numbers. Gain an understanding of computer networks and operating systems

7.5 Computational Thinking

Basic concepts of decomposing and abstracting a problem; using a range of algorithms

7.6 Pseudocode

Introduction to sequence of instructions and developing writing in pseudocode and using standard key word

8

8.1 The Wild Web

An introduction to the world of the internet and how it works. How web browsers work, effective searching techniques, IP, DNS, Topologies, cloud storage and ethical issues such as hacking and censorships

8.2 Python Programming

An introduction to using a text based language. Using syntex and variable, “IF” statements, mathematical operators and counter variables

8.3 Microbit

This is a follow on from the python programming module

8.4 Computer Logic

Examine the most common logic gates and able to solve problems

9

9.1 Web Development

Introduction to the main languages involved in web development (HTML, CSS and Java Script) and protocols involved with networking

 

 

9.2 Digital Imaging

Understand how digital images are made up and gain an understanding of some key tools in open source digital applications

9.3 Database

Introduction of the importance of Database systems and how they play a vital part to our daily lives. Create a database, queries, a set of reports and using a range of validation rules

 

9.4 Advanced Modelling

An opportunity to develop skills and knowledge through the use of advanced features such as validation, conditional formatting and advanced formulas 

KS4 Computer Science and ICT

Two courses are offered as option choices at KS4 for students and as such are each studied for four hours per week. There is no restriction on students opting to study both of these courses at KS4 as they are distinct in content. The first course is titled ‘Computer Science’ and the second ‘Digital Applications’, both are described in detail below.

Computer Science

Qualification: GCSE

Specification: AQA GCSE Computer Science (8520

Course outline

Students will look at the principles of computer science including the opportunity to develop analytical and problem-solving skills (transferrable skills that are highly sought after). Students will develop an understanding of components that make up digital systems, and how they communicate with each other. There will also be an in-depth understanding of the impact of digital technology on the individual and on wider society.

What should students expect to do during the course?

This course gives students a real, in-depth understanding of how computer technology works and an insight into what goes on “behind the scenes”, including computer programming. This course is suitable for those students with a strong mathematical and scientific background and a keen interest in computing and technology. 

Assessment (graded 9- 1)

Paper 1: Computational thinking and problem solving – 40% external examination

Paper 2: Written assessment – 40% external examination

Non-examined assessment (NEA): Computer Science Project – 20% internally and externally assessed

Progression into Sixth Form

We offer an A-Level course in Computer Science at Farmor’s School. Students who have taken this subject, and who study the subject at a higher level, will have an advantage over their colleagues. Universities will allow students to combine Computing with other subjects: Mathematics, Engineering, Science, Medicine, Business Management, Languages and Design Technology, leading to many diverse career opportunities.

Digital Applications (ICT)

Qualification: Technical Award

Specification: Edexcel certificate in Digital Applications (ICT) 6627

Course outline

“The UK is a world leader in the creative industry.” The aim of this qualification is to build on this technical innovation and creativity such as imaging, creative multimedia, website development and computer game production. You will learn to play an active role in the digital sector rather than being simply consumer of digital content. This will ideally be suited to students who want to develop creatively.

What should students expect to do during the course?

The course will provide and equip you with the knowledge, understanding and skills needed to design and create effective digital products for others to use. You will also learn the importance of creating professional, using real-world skills in planning, project management and communication.

Unit 1: Developing Web Products

  • Produce attention grabbing web products using web authoring software
  • Design, build and test a web product in a practical computer environment.

Unit 2: Creative Multimedia, Artwork & Imaging or Game Making

In this final unit you will complete one of the three optional units.

  • Multimedia - investigate a range of existing multimedia products to find out how different components are used to convey a particular message.
  • Artwork & Imaging – use relevant tools and techniques provided by imaging software to design and create effective graphic products 
  • Game Making - learn about different types of computer games, investigate what makes a game successful and learn how to plan, design and create great games for others to play.
Assessment

Unit 1 is externally assessed through a practical examination and accounts for 25% of the final mark. Unit 2 is the final unit and accounts for 75% of the final mark which is internally assessed. The qualification is a CiDA level 2 and is awarded as a Distinction, Merit or Pass.

Progression into Sixth Form

This qualification provides a broad and solid foundation for further study of various aspects of creative computing, such as graphic design, web design, computer games design and interactive media. It will also enhance your overall digital literacy and provide you with a solid foundation for employment.