Faculty Leader (inc. Computer Science)

Mrs A Casey - acasey@ndonline.org

Aims

The Computer Science Department aim to equip students with the digital skills needed to succeed in school, further education and life.  The department is aware of how our subject leads itself to develop all areas of the curriculum.  With this in mind we encourage our students to transfer their skills and knowledge into all areas of school.

Our aims:

  • To provide a safe, enjoyable and positive learning atmosphere, that motivates and enthuses students to achieve their full potential
  • To develop students digital literacy skills (office applications) and enable them to apply this knowledge to all subjects
  • To develop students’ ability to handle data using ICT tools, giving them a solid grounding for a future career
  • To develop students’ knowledge with programming and web site coding, giving them a solid grounding for a future career
  • To develop students’ design and publication skills, giving them the skills to produce effective and professional digital graphics
  • To develop students’ independent learning skills, using ICT to make them more efficient
  • Our key aim is to make our students aware of how ICT is all around them, that ICT is at the core of many employment paths and can have a big impact in enabling them to be successful in life

 

Curriculum

Key Stage 3

The Computer Science Curriculum is delivered as part of the Technology Department’s carousel of learning.  Learning topics include:

  • Introduction to ICT at ND & Internet Safety: Dongle (Publication Design)
  • PC Logo (Computer Science)
  • Coding: (Scratch etc)
  • Database: Leaf (Data Handling)
  • Internet Safety: Cyber-bullying (Publication Design)
  • Database: Music (Data Handling)
  • Understanding and developing confident computer literacy skills
  • Understanding and becoming confident uses of Google Drive

Key Stage 4

The GCSE in Computer Science is engaging and practical, encouraging creativity and problem solving.  It encourages students to develop their understanding and application of the core concepts in computer science.  Students also analyse problems in computational terms and devise creative solutions by designing, writing, testing and evaluating programs.

Key Stage 5

The A-Level Computer Science course builds on the knowledge, understanding and skills established at Key Stage 4 and encourages students to develop a broad range of the knowledge, understanding and skills of computing, as a basis for progression into further learning and/or employment.

The A-level in computer science must encourage students to develop:

  • an understanding of, and the ability to apply, the fundamental principles and concepts of computer science, including abstraction, decomposition, logic, algorithms and data representation
  • the ability to analyse problems in computational terms through practical experience of solving such problems, including writing programs to do so
  • the capacity for thinking creatively, innovatively, analytically, logically and critically
  • the capacity to see relationships between different aspects of computer science
  • mathematical skills related to: Boolean algebra, comparison and complexity of algorithms (A-level only), number representations and bases.
  • the ability to articulate the individual (moral), social (ethical), legal and cultural opportunities and risks of digital technology.

Assessment

Assessment occurs at least twice during one rotation period and follows the school assessment criteria of WWW/EBI and DIT.  The assessment will normally involve assessing the outcome produced by the student and their written evidence/evaluation document.  All assessment grades and feedback are recorded in students’ online folders with a student reflection completed in their efolders.  The assessment criteria for each strand are displayed in both classrooms and shared with the students Google Classroom.  Students are also given the criteria as part of the assessment feedback.