Computer Science

A-Level

Careers related to studying Computer Science:

Computer Science is an exciting subject that encourages students to think creatively, logically and critically and to develop advanced problem solving skills. Students choose to study Computer Science because they are passionate about computers and want to learn about computer architecture; communications and networking; fundamentals of data representation and data structures.

Career options include programmer, web developer, computer games designer, ICT technician, network management, software development, Information System Management. This course provides you will all the necessary skills needed for business and the world of work.

Course content:

  • The aims of this qualification are to enable learners to develop:
  • An understanding and ability to apply the fundamental principles and concepts of computer science, including: abstraction, decomposition, logic, algorithms and data representation.
  • The ability to analyse problems in computational terms through practical experience of solving such problems, including writing programs to do so
  • The capacity to think creatively, innovatively, analytically, logically and critically
  • The capacity to see relationships between different aspects of computer science
  • Mathematical skills.

Entry requirements:

It is preferred that students have a minimum of a GCSE grade B and/or a grade B in Mathematics. Students will find it beneficial to study A Level Maths (essential for Computer Science at degree level).

Methods of study:

Students are expected to enjoy problem solving and to think logically. The subject requires much independent work and students will need to access a wide variety of resources to supplement their knowledge of theory.

This is reinforced by extensive practical work to develop programming skills. Students will use the college intranet as a principal resource and are expected to access it outside of class time for homework.

The subject requires much independent work and students will need to access a wide variety of resources to supplement their knowledge of theory. Students will learn to develop algorithms and will implement these using a variety of programming paradigms including procedural, object oriented and functional techniques. Python is the main language used, but other languages will be experienced throughout the course.

Methods of assessment:

The course is a two-year program involving the following components of work.

First year

Component 1: Computing Principles

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

Examination (50% of qualification)

Component 2: Algorithms and problem solving

Elements of computational thinking, Problem solving and programming, Algorithms

Examination (50% of qualification)

Second year

Component 1: Computing Principles

Examination (40% of qualification)

Component 2: Algorithms and problem solving

Examination (40% of qualification)

Component 3: Programming project

Internally assessed (20% of qualification)