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Computer Science AS/A Level at St Thomas More Catholic School

Course description

This specification encourages pupils to develop a broad range of skills and knowledge of computing as a basis for progression into further learning, including progression from AS to A2, and/ or employment in computing-related fields. It promotes the integrated study of computer science. It will enable learners to develop a broad range of skills in the areas of programming, system development, computer architecture, data, communication and applications.

Course content

The course is split up into two years so that pupils also have the option to complete the AS level equivalent -or go onto completing the full A level. This specification is divided into a total of 2 units, 2 AS units and 3 A2 units. Weightings noted below are expressed in terms of the full A level qualification.

AS level

AS Unit 1- Computing principles Written examination: 1hour 15mins 50% of AS qualification

  • The characteristics of contemporary processors, input, output and storage devices
  • Software and software development
  • Programming
  • Exchanging data
  • Data types, data structures and algorithms
  • Legal, moral, ethical and cultural issues

AS Unit 2 Algorithms and problem solving Written examination: 2 hours 50% of AS qualification

  • The practical application of knowledge and understanding and will require the use of Visual Basic.NET, Python or Java as a programming language.

A level

A2 Unit - Computer systems 

  • The characteristics of contemporary processors, input, output and storage devices
  • Software and software development
  • Exchanging data
  • Data types, data structures and algorithms
  • Legal, moral, cultural and ethical issues

A2 Unit - Algorithms and programming 

  • Elements of computational thinking
  • Problem solving and programming
  • Algorithms to solve problems and standard algorithms

A2 Unit- Programming project 

  • The learner will choose a computing problem to work through according to the guidance in the specification.
  • Analysis of the problem
  • Design of the solution
  • Developing the solution
  • Evaluation

Entry requirements

This qualification is aimed at those students who have achieved a grade B or above in Computing at Key stage 4. Primarily it is aimed at those studying in preparation for employment in the Computing sector particularly in job roles where they will be expected to use programming and problem solving skills. Candidates that have not taken ICT at GCSE level will need to be interviewed by the ICT department to determine the suitability of this qualification.

Assessment

AS level

  • AS Unit 1- Computing principles Written examination: 1hour 15mins 50% of AS qualification
  • AS Unit 2 Algorithms and problem solving Written examination: 2 hours 50% of AS qualification

A level

  • A2 Unit - Computer systems Written examination: 2 hours 30 mins 40% of qualification
  • A2 Unit - Algorithms and programming Written examination: 2 hours 30 mins 40% of qualification
  • A2 Unit- Programming project Non-exam assessment 20% of examination

Future opportunities

  • University/Higher Education for example courses in Computer Games Design, Computer Science, Information Technology Management
  • Jobs and apprentices in IT
  • Employment into the IT industry

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact St Thomas More Catholic School directly.

Last updated date: 24 March 2017
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