The role of Computer Science and ICT in society has grown enormously over the last few years. Employers want employees who are computer literate. Universities expect their students to begin their studies with good programming and ICT skills. ICT is considered an essential part of all other subjects, as it is required for use of software, research and improving the presentation and collation of information.
KEY STAGE 3
At Key Stage 3, Computing and ICT is taught as a separate subject, and through work carried out in all curriculum areas. In our lessons, pupils will be taught a wide range of skills using industry-standard software, and experience using ICT in order to learn how to code in a variety of languages, and communicate information in a variety of media including text, graphics and sound.
Topics covered include how to handle and process information; using ICT to solve problems, sequencing instructions and programming. Pupils will also develop an awareness of the increasingly important role Computing and ICT is playing in our society.
In Years 7 to 9 we follow our own Program of Study for Computing and ICT that has been devised to stretch and enhance the strengths of our students whilst meeting the requirements of the new programs of study. It also prepares students for the two options available in either Computer Science or ICT in Year 10 and 11. We study coding using Python, HTML, Scratch, Game Maker and Spreadsheets. There are topics on staying safe online and cybercrime, as well as learning how to use software such as Adobe Photoshop. Students will be designing websites, making presentations and mixing digital music as part of their studies. More information on each year’s topics can be found on the 'KS3 Computer Science and ICT Course Plan' page in the menu on the left.
In order to support the teaching of Computer Science and ICT, the pupils have their own e-mail address and access to the Internet over the school network. Access to their files and some of our programs from home can be achieved by logging into the virtual desktop. See the ‘Information’ page for more details of this by clicking on the ‘Home’ button in the menu, and following the link ‘Network access for Students from home’. Homework is routinely set via the schools VLE, and students can access computers at lunchtimes and after school in the Resources Area in the Library.
Key Stage 4
The subject is offered as two options at Key Stage 4 – GCSE Computer Science and Creative iMedia. The GCSE Computer Science course follows programming, computer architecture and areas such as binary numbers and networks. The Creative iMedia course focuses on creative multimedia. Students study web site design as well as digital photographic editing, and game design. For more detail of either course, please see the ‘Computer Science GCSE' and 'IT Creative iMedia’ pages available in the menu on the left.
Key Stage 5
The subject is available as A Level Computer Science in this Key Stage. Students will build on their coding skills learnt in GCSE Computer Science, delve deeper into computer architecture and explore other hardware and software at this level, preparing them for further study or employment in this area and supporting other A Levels such as Physics or Maths.
Outside the subject
Pupils can use the resources available for individual research or preparation, as well as being able to access computerised information about career choices and higher education courses.
The school believes that it is important for all pupils to develop a range of skills for using Computer Science and ICT effectively in a wide range of situations, whilst questioning the effect that ever increasing use of new technologies is having on society.
Mrs K Pitts