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Computer Studies (ICT & Computer Science)

Computer studies is the study of how to research, design, create, test and evaluate products produced for given audiences and purposes. It can also involve the manipulation, management, transformation and communication of information or data. Computer Studies is compulsory for all students throughout Years 7-9, studied for 1 hour a week. Students follow a series of modules during KS3, ranging from network familiarity to programming. In Years 10 & 11 students are able to opt to continue with IT Digital Media production, and/or Computer Science. In The Sixth Form students have a similar choice of courses to those in KS4.

Key Stage 3

Students in Year 7 will study the use of popular types of application software including; Word Processing, Spreadsheet, Presentation, Desktop Publishing, Multimedia and the correct use of The Academy network. The different software types are used regularly during the key stage as part of a topic or module. Year 8 students will study three modules which will extend the students thinking and planning skills and the integration of more than one piece of software. Year 8 students will have modules that will develop computational thinking and programming skills, as well as creative digital media skills. Once in Year 9 students will be studying a further three modules that are in line with KS4 options including a more complex computer science based scheme of work, including developing more challenging programming skills. Year 9 will also have a module of work that will be media based. Finally, year 9 students will develop their digital literacy skills. The study of work during year 9 will allow students the opportunity to make an informed choice as to their KS4 Computer Studies choice, should they wish.

Key Stage 4

Students in Years 10 & 11 opt to study the Cambridge National in iMedia and/ or GCSE Computer Science. Students following The Cambridge National iMedia will study four modules. Module 1(Preproduction skills) is assessed by a written exam. Unit R082(Creating Digital Graphics) is also compulsory but assessed by controlled assessment. The last two modules are Academy selected and are centre assessed coursework units. Students studying Computer Science will learn about the more technical aspects of computers including; programming concepts, system architecture, hardware, software, number systems and more. Computer science students will have two exams worth 40% each and one controlled assessment.

Key Stage 5

As part of the Sleaford Joint Sixth form, students in Years 12 & 13 have a choice of courses. A single award or a double award in the Cambridge Technical at Level 3 in Digital Media or traditional AS & A Level in Computer Science. The Cambridge Technical at Level 3 in Digital Media is mainly centre assessed coursework. The topics studied are similar to some of those studied in KS4. Students can do this course even if they have not studied the i-Media course in KS4. Single award students will complete two examined units and four controlled assessment units. Double award students complete three examined units and nine controlled assessment units. Controlled assessment units include animation, photography and comic writing The ‘AS’ in Computer Science is 100% assessed by two written exams each worth 50%. The A level is assessed by two exams (80%) and programming project (20%). Students will need to display an aptitude towards computer programming or achieved a grade B at KS4 Computing.