Hartlepool Sixth Form College

Computing and ICT

AS / A2 Computing

Course Content

During Year 12 you will spend a great deal of time learning how to program. Delphi will be used to program using console, event based and objectoriented mode. You will learn HTML and use cascading style sheets to format a web-site.

JavaScript will be used as a client-side language and PHP as a server-side language. PHP will incorporate SQL so that you can create and maintain remote databases. It will also incorporate object oriented techniques.

Functional programming will be examined and used. Alongside this practical work will be theory. This will include topics such as data structures which will include arrays, stacks and queues, graphs and trees, hash tables and dictionaries and vectors. You will also learn different sort and search algorithms. You will put this theory into practice via programming. March will see you getting the opportunity to work with a real client to analyse, design, implement, test and review a system that you have agreed to build for them. This major project will continue into Year 13.

In Year 13 there will be a lot more theory compared to Year 12. You will learn about computational thinking, data representation, the fundamentals of computer systems and computer organisation/architecture, networking and the consequences of uses of computing. You will finalise your major project early in the year and then work on a skeleton program provided by the examination board on which you will be examined.

Progression

This is an ideal grounding for a Computer Science degree, this subject is accepted by all British Universities as an academic subject. Industry, business, education and many of the professions are now demanding good Computer Science graduates at both technical and management levels. Take this subject and you could go on in the field of computing or use the A Level as a support for your other subjects to gain entry into other higher education options across a full range of subject areas.

Assessment

There are two examination papers that you sit at the end of Year 13. Paper 1 is an on screen exam where you will be expected to answer theory questions and carry out programming on the skeleton program. Paper 2 is a written examination that is purely theory. There is also two examination papers that you sit at the end of Year 13. Paper 1 is an on screen exam where you will be expected to answer theory questions and carry out programming on the skeleton program. Paper 2 is a written examination that is purely theory. There is also the non-examined assessment ie your major project which is marked by your teacher and then confirmed by the examination board.

Paper 1 makes up 40% of your A level Paper 2 makes up 40% of your A level The non-examined assessment if worth 20% of your A level

You will require good written communication, sound mathematical skills and the ability to think logically, select relevant information and interpret evidence.

BTEC IT

Course Content

At subsidiary diploma level you will learn how to communicate effectively using IT and a range of applications. You will learn how to recognise and plan for your own personal development needs. You will learn how to set-up and maintain a computer and how to research and make recommendations for a computer system for a business purpose.

Assessment

Six units are taken in the first year by June. All are assessed by coursework. Coursework is an alternative to examinations but is not an easy option. To do well you have to work hard through the entire year, but it allows you to demonstrate your skills over a period of time and is not just a snapshot as in an exam, where, on the day you may not like the questions.

Progression

This subject is accepted by all British Universities and IT is a specialist subject that can be studied further at University or it can be used as a support for other subject areas which can include virtually any subject area but commonly relates to business, media, teaching, web and games design courses.

There is continued growth in employment opportunities for IT specialists, whether in the more traditional areas related to computing or the newer evolving areas of the World Wide Web and software design.

Download the course leaflet