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Computing

Key Stage 5

Why study Computer Science?

Computer Science (this is NOT ICT, ICT is totally different from Computer Science) is a practical subject where you can apply the academic principles learned in the classroom to real-world systems. It’s an intensely creative subject that combines invention and excitement, that can look at the natural world through a digital prism. Computer Science qualifications will value computational thinking, helping you to develop the skills to solve problems, design systems and understand the power and limits of human and machine intelligence.

How will you be assessed?

01 Computer Systems – Externally marked paper – 40%

02 Algorithms and programming – Externally marked paper – 40%

03 Programming project – Internally assesses and externally moderated – 20%

What will you study?  
Unit 01 Computing Principles This component is a traditionally marked and structured question paper with a mix of question types: short-answer, longer-answer, and levels of response mark-scheme-type questions. It will cover the characteristics of contemporary systems architecture and other areas including the following:

·         Operating systems

·         Introduction to programming

·         Data types, structures and algorithms

·         Exchanging data and web technologies

·         Using Boolean algebra

·         Legal and ethical issues

Unit 02 Algorithms and Programming This component will be a traditionally marked and structured question paper with two sections, both of which will include a mix of question types: short-answer, longer-answer, and levels of response mark-scheme-type questions.

Section A

·         Traditional questions concerning computational thinking

·         Elements of computational thinking

·         Programming and problem solving

·         Pattern recognition, abstraction and decomposition

·         Algorithm design and efficiency

·         Standard algorithms

Section B

There will be a scenario/task contained in the paper, which could be an algorithm or a text page-based task, which will involve problem solving.

 Unit 03 Programming Project: You will select your own user-driven problem of an appropriate size and complexity to solve. This will enable you to demonstrate the skills and knowledge necessary to meet the Assessment Objectives. You will need to analyse the problem, design a solution, implement the solution and give a thorough evaluation.
What will Computer Science offer you in the future?

You will develop an ability to analyse, critically evaluate and make decisions. The project approach is a vital component of ‘post-school’ life and is of particular relevance to Further Education, Higher Education and the workplace. Irrespective of your final choice of workplace or further education place Computer Science helps you to develop the analytical skills essential to success.