Mrs Bridges – Head of Department
The computing curriculum has undergone many changes over the last few years. There is now a greater focus on creating applications and programs through the understanding of algorithms, the learning of code and the study of hardware and processing. At St. Mary’s we have taken the old ICT programme of study and, following the advice of the DfE, created a relevant and exciting scheme of work.
St. Mary’s provide computers over an extensive network including four dedicated computing suites plus class sets of departmental laptops. Our in-house technicians constantly monitor and maintain the hardwired and wireless network and our filtering software allows our pupils to access safe and appropriate content.
From years 7 to 9 the pupils receive 1 hour of lessons per week.
GCSE classes in years 10 and 11 have 5 hours of lessons over a two week timetable.
The following topics are taught in the current programme of study for KS3. Great care has been taken to ensure pupils develop ICT and digital literacy skills, E-Safety knowledge and programming skills.
Pupils who are interested in continuing their computer studies may choose Computer Science as a GCSE at key stage 4. We are currently using the new OCR J277 GCSE Computer Science. This GCSE is engaging and practical, encouraging creativity and problem solving. It encourages students to develop their understanding and application of the core concepts in computer science. Students also analyse problems in computational terms and devise creative solutions by designing, writing, testing and evaluating programs.
The course is assessed with two examinations:
- Paper 1 – Computer systems
- Paper 2 – Computational thinking, algorithms and programming
Both exams are 90minutes long and are each worth 50% of the GCSE.
Both units are taught alongside each other throughout the two year course.
Why Choose Computer Science for GCSE