Computing has deep links with other disciplines and provides insights into both natural and artificial systems. The core of computing is computer science, in which students are taught the principles of information and computation, how digital systems work, and how to put this knowledge to use through programming. Building on this knowledge and understanding, students are equipped to use information technology to create programs, systems and a range of content. Computing also ensures that students become digitally literate – able to use, and express themselves and develop their ideas through information and communication technology – at a level suitable for the future workplace and as active participants in a digital world.
Our computing curriculum has been specifically tailored to meet the unique context of Park Academy West London. It is designed to be broad and balanced, providing all students with the opportunity to master their learning and deepen their knowledge, making sense and giving purpose as to why we learn about computing. Teachers will provide students with challenging big questions about computing, which will help them change and transform our society, putting their knowledge and passion into action.
We believe that computing helps to prepare our students for life in 21st century Britain, encouraging them to develop a greater understanding of technology and the technological world around them. These are important for the working world, socialising and using the internet productively and safely.
A computing education develops a range of programming and technological skills that are transferable to other curriculum areas, including Science, Mathematics, English and History. As they progress through KS3 and KS4 pupils will become increasingly confident in:
- The application of their digital skills
- Becoming increasingly efficient and effective communicators, collaborators and analysts
- Showing imagination and creativity in their use of ICT in different aspects of their learning and life beyond school.
- E-safety and the risks involved when using the internet.
We seek to inspire in students a love of computing and the aim of computing is to equip students with the skills necessary to use technology to become independent learners.
Key Stage 3
Our Computer Science curriculum covers multiple areas of IT and computing. In years 7 and 8 students cover 6 topics over the 6 half terms, with an end of topic assessment at the end of each term. In year 9 students have 3 computing lessons every fortnight. Lessons aim to prove greater understanding of the hardware and software elements that make up a computer system, fundamental programming concepts and the greater impact technology is having on our societies. The theme of keeping safe online and the ethical nature of technology is covered throughout the Key Stage. The KS3 curriculum is designed to best prepare students for both GCSE computing and the digital information technology course taught through the BTEC route
Key Stage 4
AQA GCSE Computer Science
Paper One: 50% – Externally assessed examination (1 hour 30 minutes)
Computational thinking and problem solving
Paper Two: 50% – Externally assessed examination (1 hour 30 minutes)
Assessment of theoretical knowledge
Develops a student’s ability to use the knowledge and skills gained through the course to solve a problem. The skills developed can be applied to exam questions on computational thinking.
BTEC L1/2 Tech Award in Digital Information Technology
Assessment 1: 30% – Exploring User Interface Design Principles and Project Planning Techniques (internally assessed coursework)
Assessment 2: 30% – Collecting, Presenting and Interpreting Data (internally assessed coursework)
Assessment 3: 40% – Effective Digital Working Practices (externally assessed controlled assessment)