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Computing AS at Faringdon Community College

Course description

A mix of: practical lessons using the computers and theory based lessons where there will be some teacher explanation, class discussion and a requirement for pupils to research and find information for themselves.

Course content

Unit 1 (60%):

  • Stages of problem solving
  • Drawing and interpreting simple state transition diagrams and transition tables
  • Introducing the term algorithm, expressing the solution to a simple problem as an algorithm
  • Programming in a high level programming language and the fundamentals of structured programming
  • The binary number system, number bases and information coding schemes
  • The stages of development of a hardware/software system.

Unit 2:

  • Logic gates and boolean algebra
  • The internal components of a computer
  • Hardware devices
  • The fundamentals of computer systems
  • The structure of the internet, networking protocols and the consequences of uses of computing

Time Allocation: 8 hours per fortnight

Private Study Requirement: Pupils will be required to spend about an hour doing private study for each hour of class time. They will have some theoretical homework tasks and will need to work on their programming tasks outside of lesson time.

Extra Curricular Opportunities: Visit Bletchley Park

Good in combination with: Maths and Physics in particular but would complement any choices of AS levels.

Entry requirements

To study ‘AS’ level subjects students need to gain a minimum of 5 A*- C grades in GCSE subjects.

We expect students to have gained a grade C in Maths and English Language.

We also expect students to gain a grade B or higher in a subject that they wish to continue to study in the Sixth Form. A grade B is a good indicator to predict that a student will be able to successfully cope with the increased challenge and rigour of studying a subject to Advanced level. However, there is a degree of flexibility in this condition dependent on the student’s effort and commitment to their academic development.

A major factor in students achieving success at AS and A level is the level of effort and commitment shown during Year 12/13. Therefore, our entry requirement has a degree of flexibility to allow us to accept students who we believe have shown the necessary work ethic in Key Stage 4 but have gained a grade C in a subject they wish to study at A level.


Examining Board: AQA

A 2 hour on-screen exam which covers Unit 1 and a 1 hour written exam which covers 
Unit 2.

Future opportunities

This course forms a good foundation for a wide range of careers in the IT sector (programming, network administration, web site design, business analysis, …), as well as many other careers that involve the use of IT.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Faringdon Community College directly.

Last updated date: 23 November 2017
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