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Computing

Key Stage 4

Computer Science is a very practical subject – students will be able to use the knowledge and skills they learn in the classroom on real-world problems. It’s also a highly creative subject that calls on learners to be inventive.

THE THREE COMPONENTS OF THE COURSE (these build on the content taught in key stage 3)

THE COMPUTER AND HOW IT ALL WORKS – COMPONENT 1

  • Study how processors work.
  • Investigate computer memory and storage.
  • Explore modern network layouts and how they function.
  • Build skills in the ever important realm of cyber security.
  • Investigate how types of software are used within computer systems.
  • Stretch wider comprehension of how computers and computing affect ethical, legal, cultural and environmental issues.

 

COMPUTATIONAL THINKING, ALGORITHMS AND PROGRAMMING – COMPONENT 2

  • Study fundamental algorithms in computer science.
  • Build a firm foundation in programming techniques.
  • Produce programs through diagrams.
  • Thoroughly test programs and make them resistant to misuse.
  • Explore Boolean algebra (AND, OR, NOT).
  • Understand how we store data within computers in binary form.

 

A PROGRAMMING PROJECT – COMPONENT 3

  • Use new-found programming skills on an independent coding project by solving a real-world problem.
  • Students will spend 20 classroom hours engaging with the Programing Project.

 

What will a student gain from this course?

  • Valuable thinking and programming skills that are extremely attractive in the modern workplace.
  • A deep understanding of problem solving and experience in creating logical and efficient solutions.
  • Ability to write down solutions to problems for other people to understand.
  • A good grounding in mainstream computing theory and understanding.

 

Where to next

  • A Level Computer Science.
  • Cambridge Technicals – IT Level 3 or Digital Media Level 3

(these are OCR vocational qualifications that offer an alternative to A levels for students aged 16+).

It also provides a good grounding for other subject areas that require problem solving and analytical skills.