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The North School

Computing & ICT

Subject Overview

In computing and ICT we love being able to impart knowledge, skills and experience to our students.  We consistently demonstrate a passion for the subject and show an enthusiasm for something students may one day be working on in the field.  It is great to know that the journey began in our classrooms.  ICT and computing are hugely relevant subjects and ones that will have an impact in all forms of future study.

KS3

In Key Stage 3, students will learn all of the following: How a computer works, binary coding, spreadsheets, databases, online communication, web design, system control, game making, computer programming, e-safety and digital literacy. The topics learnt are designed to give students the best start at KS4 qualifications.

KS4

At Key stage 4, the computing and IT department offer two different qualifications – GCSE in Computer Science and a BTEC Tech Award in Digital Information Technology.

Computer Science:

Pupils will study three units.
Computer Science recognises the well-established methodologies of computing, alongside technological advances. Pupils will use Python programming language for non-exam assessment. Students will complete this course equipped with the logical and computational skills necessary to succeed at A-level, the workplace or beyond.

Unit 1 – Principles of computer science. Written exam set in practically based scenarios. 1 hour 30 minutes. 80 marks. 50% of GCSE

Unit 2 –Application of computational thinking. Written exam. 2 hours. 80 marks. 50% of GCSE.

 

Digital Information Technology – is a BTEC Tech Award consisting of three components. The first two components are assessed through a series of internal assignments (coursework). These are awarded grades from a Level 1 Pass to Level 2 Distinction and will make up 60% of the total grade. Component three is an externally assessed unit through a 90 minute examination.

  • Component 1 - Exploring User Interface Design Principles and Project Planning Techniques
  • Component 2 - Collecting, Presenting and Interpreting Data
  • Component 3 - Effective Digital Working Practices

KS5

We have a very successful sixth form provision; students will study either the BTEC National Diploma (equivalent to 2 A-Levels) of the BTEC National Extended Certificate (equivalent to 1 A-Level) both of which are studied over a 2-year period with many of our students going onto apprenticeships or university.  These courses cover a wide range of IT and Computing skills

Facilities

We have 3 large computer rooms with modern computer systems running Microsoft Windows operating system, Microsoft Office Suite and a large range of software. We have a small self-enclosed network and systems for hardware and software installations.

Enrichment

In the Computing department we run after school clubs which include – programming club and games club, as well as OSL sessions for KS4 and 5 students.

Higher Education Links

For many students progression to a university course is a requirement for their chosen career path. We have strong links with our local universities in Kent with students going to study Computer Science and other disciplines.

Career Opportunities

  • Games Design
  • Software Engineer / Programmer
  • IT Technician
  • Database Developer
  • Web Authoring
  • Solution Developer
  • Nano-Computing
  • DNA Computing
  • Artificial Intelligence / Expert Systems
  • Nature-inspired computing
  • Quantum Computing
  • Consulting