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Computer Science AQA AS and A Level at Larkmead School

Course description

This is a subject which is now a reformed A level which means that the result of the AS exams does not contribute to the overall A level marks and grades. If a student drops the course after AS then this new type of the AS is worth 40% of the UCAS points of the full A level for University entry in 2018 and beyond. If a student completes the A level course then it is only the assessment at the end of the second year that counts towards the full A level grade. 

Course content

AS

  • Fundamentals of programming
  • Fundamentals of data structure
  • Systematic approach to problem solving
  • Theory of computation
  • Fundamentals of data representation
  • Fundamentals of computer systems
  • Fundamentals of computer organisation and architecture
  • Consequences of uses of computing
  • Fundamentals of communication and networking

A2

  • Fundamentals of algorithms
  • Big Data
  • Fundamentals of functional programming
  • Systematic approach to problem solving
  • Non-exam assessment - the computing practical project

 

How you will learn (investigations, course work etc.):

Content is delivered via lecture-style lessons, investigations, self-directed research, self-learning exercises (especially programming). Preparation for the practical exercise component of Paper 1 is self-directed, based on learning throughout the year.

The Practical Project at A2 is self-managed, with interval deadlines set by teacher.

 

Skills you will need:

  • Fundamentals of algorithms
  • Big Data
  • Fundamentals of functional programming
  • Systematic approach to problem solving
  • Non-exam assessment - the computing practical project

Entry requirements

To study AS/A Levels you will normally need: A minimum of 5 GCSEs at Grade C or above.

Assessment

AS

Paper 1:

An on-screen exam testing a student’s ability to program, as well as their theoretical knowledge of computer science, focusing on programming fundamentals and theory of computation (50% of AS-level)

Paper 2:

A written exam testing a student’s knowledge of aspects of computer science, such as data representation, computer systems and architecture, communications and networking and consequences of computing (50% of AS-level)

 

A2

Paper 1:

An on-screen exam testing a student’s ability to program, as well as their theoretical knowledge of computer science, focusing on programming fundamentals and theory of computation (40% of A-level)

Paper 2:

A written exam testing a student’s knowledge of other aspects of computer science, such as data representation, computer systems and architecture, communications and networking, big data, function and systematic programming, databases and consequences of computing. (40% of A-level).

A practical project assessing the student’s ability to use the knowledge and skills gained through the course to solve or investigate and practical problem (20% of A-level).

Future opportunities

A highly-regarded course for progression to Computer Science degree courses and other related courses such as systems analyst, software developer, network administrator. The emphasis on logical thinking and problem solving also means that the course prepares students effectively for courses such as engineering, medicine and many other less IT-focused academic routes.

How to apply

If you want to apply for this course, you will need to contact Larkmead School directly.

Last updated date: 22 September 2016

Key information

Venues

  • More information
    • Larkmead School is part of the Abingdon 14-19 consortium. As we are part of a consortium, students have the opportunity to select a range of A-level subjects spread across the three Abingdon secondary schools. Each subject is taught by experienced staff with excellent results.

       

      In addition to academic study, Larkmead sixth form students engage in a Personal development curriculum as well as sessions based on study skills, culture and careers advice. Every student is offered individual advice and guidance about the next phase of their education whether that be university, apprenticeships or paid employment.

       

      During study periods, students are expected to study in either the designated sixth form area in the Learning Resource Centre or allocated study rooms. Between lessons, students can relax in the sixth-form common room which boasts a range of facilities.

       

      There is a well-structured enrolment and induction process for students wishing to join the sixth form, starting with a Consortium 16-19 Information Evening as well as a meeting for prospective students in November, followed by a meeting for prospective parents in March, and an induction day in the summer after the GCSE exams are finished. Once students have received their exam results in August, there are a number of enrolment clinic sessions to help students choose their courses and followed by a brief induction period before lessons commence.