Welcome to Computer Science


Vision

Our vision is to provide a high-quality computing education which equips our students to use computational thinking and creativity to understand the change in technologies in the modern world. We also strive to ensure that students become digitally literate – able to use, and express themselves and develop their ideas through, information technology. With the ever changing modern world in which we live, it is essential that students are able to make informed choices to help them successfully navigate our digital world safely.

Intent

The curriculum has been designed from KS3 to ensure students learn the fundamentals of ICT and Computing. We believe our curriculum is not only ambitious but it also allows for ample challenge regardless of the students’ ability. We have integrated the national curriculum computer science strands within our schemes of work, both at KS3 and KS4 and we believe these skills are not only beneficial to the student across the entire curriculum but also gear students up with the right skills and knowledge to progress into KS4 and in the future, the wider world.

The curriculum plan can be seen to build on knowledge gained in previous units of work. The schemes of work are planned carefully and are underpinned by ‘fertile questions. The KS3 curriculum is a steady inclined introduction into the main areas of computer science which will enable students to progress if opting for GCSE Computer Science as an option. 

Throughout the schemes of work students always have to complete a summative assessment which requires them to write written responses to exam style questions. Within the schemes of work there are clear key vocabulary highlighted which students are expected to learn, understand and use within lessons. The new ERIC (everybody read in class) time in class will enable all students to carry out more in depth subject specific reading on areas of interest.

Careers and Employability Skills

With the ever changing landscape of employability it is paramount we provide students with the essential skills which will enable them to obtain and sustain successful jobs in the future. Due to the pace of the jobs being created within the computing sector, it is our belief that by having computing related skills will make available vast career paths linked to the industry.  However, careers that do not instantly stand out as being linked directly to computing still do have high form of computing elements.

Employment skills we develop in our subject;

  • Computational Thinking
  • Problem Solving
  • Decomposing
  • Abstraction
  • Creativity
  • Numeracy / Literacy Skills
  • Resilience 
  • Teamwork
  • ICT functional skills

Year 7

During year 7, students will study the following topics:

Fertile question: How can I keep safe online?

Content

  • Viruses
  • Grooming
  • Cyberbullying
  • Digital footprint
  • Online reputation
  • Digital Wellbeing
  • Passwords
  • Sexting

Skills

  • Safe use of the internet
  • How to identify if content is safe/appropriate
  • How to have a positive digital footprint
  • Effective internet searching

Fertile question: How does a computer work?

Content

  • Converting Binary / denary numbers
  • Knowing a range of computer hardware and software
  • Knowing the difference between inputs/outputs and processing
  • The purpose of the CPU

Skills

  • Converting Binary / denary numbers
  • Presentation skills - consistency
  • Hardware and software
  • Inputs and outputs

Fertile question: What storage is in my computer?

Content

  • The purpose of storage in computer devices
  • To recognise a range of storage devices and their advantages and disadvantages

Skills

  • Effective searching of the web
  • Presentation
  • Designing skills

Fertile question: How does the web work?

Content

  • Internet vs. www
  • Client vs. server
  • URLs

Skills

  • Effective internet searching
  • Presentation skills

Fertile question: How do I make a program in Small Basic?

Content

  • Print
  • Properties
  • Variables
  • If statements
  • Else if statements

Skills

  • Programming techniques
  • Syntax errors
  • Computational thinking

Fertile question: How do I make a HTML website?

Content

  • Client requirements & target audience
  • Visualisation diagrams
  • Usability & accessibility
  • HTML code

Skills

  • Programming techniques
  • Design and create a program
  • Computational thinking

Year 8

During year 8, students will study the following topics:

Fertile question: How do I plan and create a program in Python?

Content

  • What is python?
  • How to program in python?
  • Abstraction
  • Decomposition
  • Algorithmic thinking
  • Selection
  • Iteration
  • Data types
  • Arithmetic operators
  • Boolean operators

Skills

  • Computational thinking
  • Computational logic
  • Programming skills

Fertile question: What is artificial Intelligence and could it be dangerous?

Content

  • What is AI – what are the benefits and negatives.
  • Examples of AI
  • Students study the ethical side of robots and other types of AI and the impact they have on society.
  • Multimedia product design

Skills

  • Effective searching using the internet
  • Debating
  • Effective presentation skills
  • Extended writing for exam questions

Fertile question: Am I as logical as a computer system?

Content

  • Students will need to know that computers only understand 1,0.
  • To know a range of logic gates and be able to give inputs and outputs
  • To combine Boolean operators to two levels
  • Solve truth tables

Skills

  • Problem solving – breaking down the question / diagram into manageable parts.
  • Designing and solving computational questions

Fertile question: What are computer networks?

Content

  • Knowledge of different types of network hardware and their use
  • Use of different types of networks
  • Understanding of topologies where and why they are used

Skills

  • Exam written answers
  • Drawing network topologies 
  • Understanding network hardware

Fertile question: What are the threats to a computer system and how do I protect myself?

Content

  • Forms of attack
  • Threats posed to networks
  • Identifying and preventing vulnerabilities

Skills

  • Exam written answers
  • Teamwork challenges
  • Knowledge of different types of threats to networks
  • Knowledge of ways of preventing threats to networks

Fertile question: What is the purpose of the internal components of a computer and how do they work?

Content

  • Types of hardware used in a computer system
  • Internal / external hardware
  • Types of software used in computer systems
  • System and application software
  • Custom / Off the shelf
  • Propriety / Open source software

Skills

  • Knowledge of different types of computer hardware
  • Knowledge of different types of computer software

Fertile question: What is systems software?

Content

  • Knowledge of common operating systems
  • How system software works in computers
  • Different types of user interfaces

Skills

  • Understanding of the way computers are set up
  • Written exam questions

Year 9

During year 9, students will study the following topics:

Fertile question: What does binary represent?

Content

  • Units / file sizes
  • Converting numbers to binary / hex
  • Compressing files, images and sound – the impact of this
  • Compression – lossy and lossless Skills
  • Sampling sound / frequency

Skills

  • Numeracy Skills
  • Exam written questions
  • Know file sizes in order
  • ICT Office Skills
  • Effective internet searching

Fertile question: Is Creative iMedia for me?

Content

  • purpose & properties of digital graphics
  • plan a digital graphic
  • create a digital graphic
  • review a digital graphic

Skills

  • Identifying digital graphics and their purpose
  • Knowing why target audience is important
  • Life Cycle

 Fertile question: Am I a professional Python Programmer?

Content

  • Computational Thinking
  • Pseudocode
  • Selection
  • Iteration
  • Data types
  • Arithmetic operators
  • Boolean operators

Skills

  • Computational thinking
  • Computational logic
  • Programming skills

Fertile question: What are the Ethical, Legal and Environmental Issues linked to computer use?

Content

  • ethical issues – use of machines rather than humans
  • legal issues – all computer related laws
  • cultural issues – differences access to computers provide
  • environmental issues – how to dispose correctly and the impact of not recycling
  • privacy issues

Skills

  • Written responses to large mark questions
  • ICT software skills – Office based
  • Debating

Fertile question: What is computer memory?

Content

  • Types of memory in a computer system
  • Difference between RAM and ROM
  • Types of storage device - Optical, Magnetic, Solid state
  • Types of storage devices

Skills

  • Knowledge of different types of computer memory
  • Knowledge of different storage software
  • Difference between the different storage devices/types

Fertile question: What are spreadsheets?

Content

  • Students know the importance of spreadsheet formulas and why they are used.
  • To be able to use a range of formulas to produce key findings
  • Produce professional charts /graphs

Skills

  • Formatting data
  • Presenting data
  • Formulas practice

Year 10

During year 10, students will study the following topics:

Fertile question: How do I interpret and understand problems?

Content

  • Algorithms
  • Flowcharts
  • Pseudocode
  • Abstraction
  • Decomposition

Skills

  • Computational thinking
  • Computational logic
  • Programming skills

Fertile question: How do I design, program, test and evaluate a program for a specific purpose?

Content

  • Programming techniques - analysis, design, development, testing, evaluation and conclusions
  • Programming constructs
  • String manipulation
  • File handling
  • The use of data types

Skills

  • Computational thinking
  • Computational logic
  • Programming skills
  • How to plan, create and test a program

Fertile question: How do I think logically like a computer?

Content

  • Binary
  • Denary
  • Logic gates
  • Truth tables
  • Boolean operators

Skills

  • Numeracy Skills
  • Exam written questions
  • Understanding how a computer uses binary to function
  • Applying logical operators in appropriate truth tables to solve problems
  • Applying computing-related mathematics

Fertile question: How do I make a robust program?

Content

  • Producing robust programs
  • Defensive design considerations
  • Maintainability
  • Testing
  • Types of errors

Skills

  • Planning for contingencies
  • How to comment and indent code
  • How to test a program throughout its implementation
  • How to identify and correct errors

Fertile question: How does my computer understand all the different coding languages?

Content

  • Translators and facilities of languages
  • characteristics and purpose of different levels of programming language, including low level languages
  • the purpose of translators
  • the characteristics of an assembler, a compiler and an interpreter
  • common tools and facilities available in an integrated development environment (IDE)

Skills

  • Computational thinking
  • Computational logic

Fertile question: Can I use my programming techniques to complete a given task within a certain time frame?

Content

Programming CAU

  • Programming techniques
  • Analysis
  • Design
  • Development
  • Testing, evaluation and conclusions

Skills

  • Creating a program from a brief within a specific time frame
  • Creating an algorithm, flowchart
  • Writing pseudocode
  • Programming using Python

Year 11

During year 11, students will study the following topics:

Fertile question: How does a computer process data and instructions?

Content

  • Characteristics of the CPU
  • Von Neumann architecture
  • Factors that effect the speed of the CPU
  • Embedded systems

Skills

  • Exam technique
  • Retrieval practice
  • Recalling knowledge

Fertile question: How does a computer store and represent data?

Content

  • Primary storage
  • Secondary storage
  • Units of data storage
  • Binary
  • Denary
  • Hexadecimal
  • Binary shift
  • Character sets
  • Image representation
  • Sound representation
  • Compression

Skills

  • Exam technique
  • Retrieval practice
  • Recalling knowledge
  • Storage unit conversions

Fertile question: How do the networks I connect to work?

Content

  • Types of network
  • Factors that affect the performance of networks
  • Network hardware
  • The internet
  • Network topologies
  • Common network protocols

Skills

  • Exam technique
  • Retrieval practice
  • Recalling knowledge

Fertile question: What are the threats to computers and networks? How can I keep them safe?

Content

  • Forms of attack
  • Identifying and preventing vulnerabilities

Skills

  • Exam technique
  • Retrieval practice
  • Recalling knowledge

Fertile question: What is system software? How does it help my computer to run efficiently?

Content

  • Operating Systems
  • Utility software

Skills

  • Exam technique
  • Retrieval practice
  • Recalling knowledge

Fertile question: What are the legal, ethical, cultural and environmental concerns when using computers and other digital technologies?

Content

  • The impacts of digital technology on society
  • Legislation relevant to computer science

Skills

  • Exam technique
  • Retrieval practice
  • Recalling knowledge

Resources

OCR GCSE Computer Science

All pupils use ICT facilities in accordance with the schools computer use policy.


Mr M. Ashworth

Head of Computing

Mrs G. Lewis

Teacher of Computing

Mr J. Murray

Teacher of Computing

Mr R. Latham

Teacher of Computing


Computing

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