Computer Science GCSE
The course will give students a real, in-depth understanding of how computer technology works. The course provides excellent preparation for higher study and employment in the field of computer science. The course will develop critical thinking, analysis and problem solving skills through the study of computer programming.
Examination Board and Syllabus: AQA Computer Science (8520)
Computing is of enormous importance to the economy, and the role of Computer Science as a discipline itself as an ‘underpinning’ subject across science and engineering is growing rapidly. Computer technology continues to advance rapidly and the way that technology is consumed has been changing at a fast pace over recent years. The growth in the use of mobile devices and web-related technologies has exploded, resulting in new challenges for employers and employees. For example, businesses today require an ever-increasing number of technologically aware individuals. Students will complete this course equipped with the logical and computational skills necessary to succeed at A-level, the workplace or beyond.
Students will get the opportunity to design code and test a program based on a set scenario. 20 hours of lessons is set aside for students to complete this task.
- Fundamentals of algorithms
- Fundamentals of data representation
- Computer systems
- Fundamentals of computer networks
- Fundamentals of cyber security
- Ethical, legal and environmental impacts of digital technology on wider society, including issues of privacy
- Aspects of software development
- Programming project
You should have a keen interest in Computer Science and programming, it is recommended that you learn other languages outside of lesson to aid your learning. You must have excellent English and Mathematics skills and have a logical approach to learning and problem solving. The qualification breaks down as follows:
Component 1 – Computational Thinking and Problem Solving– Externally set exam – 50% of final grade
Component 2 – Written Assessment– Externally set exam – 50% of final grade
Component 3* – Programming Project – Practical Programming task (No longer counts towards final grade, a new assessment is due to introduced in 2021)
What can I do with a Computer Science qualification?
The increasing importance of information technologies means there is a growing demand for professionals who are qualified in this area. Students who have taken a GCSE in Computer Science and who then progress to study the subject at A Level or university will have an advantage over their colleagues, some of whom are picking up the subject at these levels for the first time.