Technology & Design
The world today is organised and controlled by the transistor! Electronics post 1945 has now created a world which 60 years ago was science fiction. It is this rapid progress that makes the study of T&D relevant and useful in the world of work. There has never been a greater need to be aware of the technical advances of the world around us.
Your mobile phone, tablet, smart TV, the internet, driverless vehicles, unmanned spacecraft, satellites all of these aspects of modern life are based on electronics and the design of products that use them for the benefit of everyone.
These advances are at the very heart of modern life. T&D helps build a better world!
Why study Technology & Design?
It is fun to design and make!
- you get to create your own product or system
- you get to work with tools or machines
- you get to use graphics, and other methods, to communicate your design ideas
- you get to make links between products and the impact they have on daily life
- you get to develop your decision making skills and work independently
In Years 8-10 the pupils make at least two practical prototypes/products each year. This starts with simple single material objects in Year 8, such as a penholder or a photo frame, progressing through transistor-based electronics in Year 9 to programmable chip systems in Year 10. All of this activity is geared towards preparation for GCSE. CAD/CAM is embedded into the pupils’ experience from Year 8 onwards.
One main project must be produced over the two years and submitted for the coursework assessment. The main purpose of the project is to give candidates the opportunity to demonstrate what they know, understand and can do in relation to the technological process.
We use CCEA as our examination board.
Pupils study systems and control and there are two elements: electronic and microelectronic control systems (PIC Microcontrollers).
The Design and Technology examination comprises of:
Unit 1 Core Examination 25%
Unit 2 Systems & Control Examination 25%
Unit 3 Design and Make Controlled Assessment Task 50%
This consists of a design folder (10 pages) worth 25%; and a final Product, also worth 25%
The teaching strategy adopted in Design & Technology is mainly that of ‘Problem Solving’. A problem is identified, an investigation and research approach is adopted, a solution is designed, manufactured and evaluated. Year 11 is used to embed understanding of new concepts and techniques whilst Year 12 is focused on the production of the controlled assessment task.
This is offered by the school as a relevant, worthwhile examination. We use CCEA as our examination board. This subject is now a widely recognised qualification by most Universities who consider it to be a solid foundation on which to build further academic achievements particularly in combination with Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry and Computer Science.
The structures of the AS and A Level courses are summarised in the table below.
|AS 1 – Product Design and Systems and Control||2 x 1 hour examinations in a single session||50% of AS||20% of A Level|
|AS 2 – Product Development||Practical coursework, externally moderated||50% of AS||20% of A Level|
|A2 1 – Systems and Control||2 hour examination||30% of A Level|
|A2 2 – Product-System Design and Manufacture||Practical coursework externally moderated||30% of A Level|
Coursework is an essential part of these examinations with it making up 50% of the AS and 50% of the full A level.
Unit AS 1: Product Design and Systems and Control
This unit is a study of product design including materials and their processing with an area of systems and control. Pupils will study Section A: Product Design and Practice and a specialist area of systems and control in Section B: Electronic and Microelectronic Control Systems.
Unit AS 2: Coursework: Product Development
The emphasis in this unit is on the analysis and development of an existing product, with a view to re-designing either the product or an aspect of it. Pupils will produce a 3-dimensional model or prototype which represents the practical outcome of the product analysis and development. A portfolio should accompany the practical component with written and graphical information produced on not more than ten A3 sheets. Pupils can present the portfolio in electronic format.
This unit draws on the knowledge and skills in Unit 1 and should represent approximately 45 hours of work. It will be internally assessed and externally moderated.
Unit A2 1: Systems and Control – An in-depth study of Systems and Control in Section A: Electronic and Microelectronic Control Systems.
Unit A2 2: Coursework: Product-system, Design and Manufacture
Candidates will be required to design and manufacture a technological product or system. The technological prototype must have an energy source to make it function and include a control system comprising input, process and output. A portfolio should accompany the practical component with written and graphical information produced on not more the 20 A3 pages. Pupils can present the portfolio in an electronic format.
This unit draws on the knowledge and skills covered in all units but must reflect the chosen option in A2 Unit 1: it represents approximately 60 hours of work and will be internally assessed and externally moderated.
The high level of ICT integration into the subject means that the Department has a cluster of 26 PCs with software appropriate to the design and production of complex electronically based project work. Solidworks, Circuit Wizard and Techsoft 2-D Design form the main group of programs which are used in conjunction with the Laser Cutter, 3-D Printer, CNC Router and CNC Vinyl Cutters to produce high quality products.
Opportunities Beyond AS and A Level
Having successfully completed Technology and Design at A level pupils are encouraged to proceed to higher education courses. Many pupils have found this subject to be extremely beneficial if they intend to follow a course in Engineering (Mechanical, Civil, Aeronautical, Electrical, Electronic and Production), Product Design, Architecture, Environmental Health, Housing Management, Information & Communication Technologies, Multimedia Design, Quantity Surveying or related fields either at University or College of Education.
The RSD Drama Society Productions rely heavily on lighting, sound and stage construction involvement from T&D pupils in Years 12-14.
The Department also co-collaborates with the Physics Department in the Young Engineers programme.