Information and Communication Technology
We offer ICT as an option for students; this course begins in Year 9. Students have the opportunity to study the Cambridge National Certificate in ICT. It is a vocationally-related qualification that takes an engaging, practical and inspiring approach to learning. The course comprises of four units. Three of the units are coursework and one is an exam. Each unit is worth 25% of the final grade.
Students develop a range of software applications, based on a scenario given to them by the exam board. Students use these packages to investigate and solve problems based on applications of computers in the fields of commerce, industry, education and leisure. These include:
Word processing software
Using the internet
Students develop skills in Multimedia applications. They have the opportunity to produce promotional materials which have interactive contend for a specified audience. The module gives students the opportunity to use a range of multimedia to enhance an interactive product. Students can develop the skills which interest them in such applications as fireworks, Photoshop and PowerPoint.
At the end of Year 10 leading to the January of Year 11 students study to prepare for the examined module. In this module they will develop an understanding of how ICT can be used to meet business needs; work with information and data to meet specific business needs; gain an understanding of the legal, ethical, safety and security issues that affect how computers should be used. In addition they will also look at how ICT can be used to support business working practices.
The first term will be spent preparing for the exam. A case study is published by the exam board in November and is used as the basis for revision.
In January students embark on the final piece of coursework, Handling Data Using Spreadsheets. This gives students the chance to develop advanced skills with spreadsheet software. They learn different ways to analyse data and present their findings.
Computing is a GCSE course, which gives students an in-depth understanding of how computer technology works. Students will have the opportunity to develop knowledge of programming in addition to developing their knowledge of computer hardware and software.
Students will have the opportunity to develop their understanding of emerging technologies and how they work. They will be expected to keep up to date with developments in technology in a range of contexts. From this they will need to evaluate the effectiveness and impact of computer programs and the use of computers in society. Students will develop their own programs to solve problems. This will be done through two pieces controlled assessment set by the exam board. Each is worth 30% of the final grade. The first piece of controlled assessment tests the students’ knowledge of specified programmes and asks them to solve a clearly defined problem. The second allows the student to be more creative in their solution. The course concludes with an exam which is based on the fundamentals of the computer system, computer hardware, software and the representation of data in computer systems. Software is developed through a deeper knowledge of databases and hardware is developed through knowledge of communications and networking.
Philippa Hall – Head of Business, ICT and Computing
Madeleine Cundill – ICT Teacher