Computer Science has been added to My Courses

Loading...

Course specifics

Entry Requirements

  • A minimum of 5 GCSEs at grade 4 or above (including English Language). Level 2 vocational qualifications (e.g. BTEC/OCR) must be a merit grade or above and only one will count as one GCSE equivalent.
  • GCSE Mathematics at grade 6
  • GCSE English Language at grade 5
  • Pass Computer Science Transition Task

80%exams

20%coursework

Exam board: AQA

100%Well above national pass rate this year

This course aims to develop your ability to solve problems and to know when they are solved or not.

Expressing yourself precisely and thinking algorithms through carefully are qualities that are encouraged and will have lasting value. The specification has no overlap with the ICT course. No prior knowledge of Computing and ICT is required but a summer task must be completed and submitted before Enrolment. The course has an emphasis on abstract thinking, general problem-solving, programming skills, algorithmic and mathematical reasoning and scientific engineering based thinking. It has been designed to suit students wishing to continue on to either HE Computer Science or related degrees, or to employment in areas where knowledge of computing would be beneficial.

Eleanor O'Leary

Eleanor O'Leary

Two Year Study

Paper 1

Theory of computation. Fundamentals of programming, data structures and algorithms. A 2 hour 30 minute on-screen exam based on seen and unseen material with a range of programming tasks. Worth 40% of the A-level.

Paper 2

Fundamentals of data representation, functional programming, computer systems, organisation and architecture, communication and networking. Big data and consequences of  uses of computing. A 2 hour 30 minute written exam worth 40% of the A-level.

Non-exam assessment

Individual programming project of the candidates own choice worth 20% of the A level

 

Methods of Teaching and Learning

The course is taught by well qualified and experienced staff. Teaching methods include exposition, discussions and allow plenty of time to develop practical skills in both packages and programming.  Current programming languages taught include Java, Haskell and SQL.  You will also have opportunities to take STEM projects including participation in a robotics club. You are expected to do a substantial amount of both practical and theory work outside the classroom.

Method of Assessment

Progression assessment will take place in June of the first year. External assessment will be taken in June of the second year.

Resources

Appropriate textbooks are available and need to be purchased for the course. Study guides are prepared for learning practical skills and are available on the college virtual learning environment (Moodle). The College has several Computer Suites each containing over 20 PCs networked to the main College system where students can log in and still access their files on the student server. Remote access via the Internet is also available. A selection of microcontrollers and associated kits are available for those interested and for possible use in A-level or EPQ projects.

Progression

A-level Computer Science is accepted as an appropriate qualification for entry to many degree courses and gives a very good start to students wishing to take Computer Science at degree level. It is also well thought of by employers for students wanting to go straight into employment.

Charges

You will be charged for printing and there are also costs incurred privately in buying textbooks and memory sticks to back up project work if desired. A trip to Bletchley Park is planned and currently the cost for this is £35.

Enrichment

You will be encouraged to participate in enrichment activities, including the robotics club, which meets regularly and competes in an annual national robotics competition,  the National Cipher Challenge where students program tools to break a series of ciphers, the national British Informatics Olympiad competition and many additional  STEM activities including trips, talks by visiting speakers, university access programs, CREST gold awards and applying for summer placements programs.

Progression / What next

A-level Computer Science is accepted as an appropriate qualification for entry to many degree courses and gives a very good start to students wishing to take Computer Science at degree level. It is also well thought of by employers for students wanting to go straight into employment.

Computer Science provides an insight into how algorithms increasingly impact on the world we live in that helps inform our understanding and supports other subjects that make use of computer science.

Transition Task 2018 is now closed but the details are left here for your information:

Instructions for Transition Task 2018

In order to inform you, and us, about whether this is the right choice you need to complete and submit the transition task detailed below, taking about 15 hours of work in total, in addition to applying and fulfilling entrance requirements. All students wishing to take computer science, starting from August 2018, need to complete this task - download and use the documents below:

Transition Task 2018

Transition Task 2018 Electronic Answer Document

close

loading