Computer Science is a practical subject where students can apply academic principles learned in the classroom to real-world systems. This is an intensely creative subject that combines invention and excitement which will help students to develop the skills to solve problems, design systems and understand the power and limits of human and machine intelligence. This Computer Science qualification will be the best preparation for students who want to go on to study Computer Science at degree level and will also provide a good grounding for other subject areas that require computational thinking and analytical skills.
AS Level Course Structure
In Year 12 students will complete the following units:
Computing Principles (50% of AS) - Assessed by an examination (1hr 15 mins). It will cover the characteristics of contemporary systems architecture and other areas including the following:
• The characteristics of contemporary processors, input, output and storage devices
• Software and software development
• Exchanging data
• Data types, data structures and algorithms
• Legal, moral, ethical and cultural issues
• Algorithms and Problem Solving (50% of AS) - Assessed by anexamination (1hr 15 mins). There will be a short scenario contained in the paper, which could be an algorithm or a text page-based task, which will involve problem solving. Areas covered include:
• Elements of computational thinking
• Problem solving and programming
Students will cover the AS Level content and will also complete a Programming Project (20% of A Level). This will be a portfolio based assessment. Students will be given a programming problem for which they will need to develop a solution using an appropriate programming language (Python). Students will need to analyse the problem, design a solution, implement the solution and give a thorough evaluation.
Assessment at A Level also includes :
• Computer Systems (40% of A Level)
• Algorithms and Programming (40% of A Level)
Students will need to devote a significant amount of time to progress with their programming skills which is critical to their success. This will involve completing both online and workbook tutorials. In addition there will be a range of extended learning tasks that will include research activities and practice exam questions.
Minimum Grade C GCSE
Computer Science (or
equivalent) plus Grade 6
Mr. S. Greenwood