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Optional subject

Computer Science

Level: GCSE Examination board: OCR Specification: OCR J277

GCSE course outline

Computing is of enormous importance to the economy; the role of Computer Science as a discipline and as an 'underpinning' subject across Science and Engineering is growing rapidly. It is a challenging topical subject designed for students with a logical approach who wish to gain deeper insight into technology and to gain programming skills or to continue with Computer Science at A level. The course looks inside computing systems to explore the fundamental concepts, and to understand how technology makes a difference to our lives. The course includes programming, networks, security, data representation, applications and architecture. Critical thinking, logical reasoning and algorithmic thinking skills are developed together with design and structured problem-solving. Students will develop understanding by solving interesting and challenging problems: this set of skills is known as computational thinking.

Skills required

This is a challenging topical subject designed for students with a logical approach and strong mathematical ability who wish to gain deeper insight into computing technology, to learn to code or to gain an understanding of how technology can be used. It is a science subject with specific facts to learn and apply and students must be prepared to engage with Design and Implementation in practical work. An ability to work independently and tenaciously, for example in debugging your programs, is essential.

Assessment method

Examinations (2 x 1½ hour long and short answer questions):

  1. Computer Systems; long and short answer questions
  2. Computational thinking and algorithms and programming - questions and coding.

Post 16 opportunities and careers

This GCSE provides a firm grounding for further study in Computer Science or IT. The vast majority of 21st century careers require an understanding of Computing to some degree; areas such as e-commerce, technical support, business, and expanding areas such as computer gaming, networking and other well-paid opportunities with Computer Science. 'Computational thinking', developed in this subject is an attribute increasingly valued and sought by employers. Students may also apply for relevant apprenticeships in this sector.

The competitions linked to this subject such as First Lego league and CyberCenturion are great. Harry

Get in touch

For more information contact the Head of Department.

Name: Mr Michael Dripps

Email: Michael.Dripps@lvs.ascot.sch.uk