Design and Technology


Design and Technology is fundamental to how we live our lives. From the roofs over our heads, to the phones in our pockets, to the food we eat.

Our students learn to use current technologies and consider the impact of future technological developments. They learn to respond creatively to solve problems as individuals and members of a team. They explore the relationship food has upon the environment and develop skills to cater for individuals and events.

Students respond with ideas, products and systems, challenging expectations where appropriate. They combine practical and intellectual skills with an understanding of aesthetic, technical, cultural, health, social, emotional, economic, industrial and environmental issues.

Through technology students develop confidence in using practical skills, to manage their time and become discriminating users of products. They apply their creative thinking and learn to innovate through using skills that are transferable to many other contexts, such as:

  • Using equipment safely
  • Measuring accurately
  • Working to a brief
  • Development modelling
  • Evaluating products
  • Communication

The key stage 3 curriculum is designed to develop skills such as graphics, food, and product design; thus giving them a solid base to undertake a GCSE should they wish to. They will gain this experience through specially designed units of work covering a variety of skills and themes across the different areas of technology.

Pupils should be taught to develop their creativity and ideas, and increase proficiency in their execution. They should develop an understanding of the limitations of the design brief and the effectiveness of the final creation and evaluation.

Pupils will be able to demonstrate:

Understand user needs Effective design criteria Present Design Ideas Design Issues Tools and Equipment Materials/ingredients and properties
Be able to select appropriate research to inform your work Be able to write effective, measureable design criteria Be able to present effective design ideas appropriately for the material area Identify the opportunities and constraints of design issues in your work Select and show safe use of the appropriate tools and equipment in each material area Be able to select correct material/ingredients due to their properties

Be able to show correct use of material/ingredients

Homework expectations

The technology department follows the Academy policy on homework.  It is essential a disciplined approach towards homework is taken in order for students to fully meet the course requirements.

The GCSE in Design and Technology enables students to understand and apply iterative design processes through which they explore, create and evaluate a range of outcomes. The qualification enables students to use creativity and imagination to design and make prototypes (together with evidence of modelling to develop and prove product concept and function) that solve real and relevant problems, considering their own and others’ needs, wants and values. It gives students opportunities to apply knowledge from other disciplines, including mathematics, science, art and design, computing and the humanities.

Students will acquire subject knowledge in design and technology that builds on Key Stage 3, incorporating knowledge and understanding of different materials and manufacturing processes in order to design and make, with confidence, prototypes in response to issues, needs, problems and opportunities.

Students learn how to take design risks, helping them to become resourceful, innovative and enterprising citizens. They should develop an awareness of practices from the creative, engineering and manufacturing industries. Through the critique of the outcomes of design and technology activity, both historic and present day, students should develop an understanding of its impact on daily life and the wider world and understand that high-quality design and technology is important to the creativity, culture, sustainability, wealth and wellbeing of the nation and the global community.

A final prototype could be a highly-finished product, made as proof of concept before manufacture, or working scale models of a system where a full-size product would be impractical.

Areas of study covered in KS4

Design and Technology consists of one externally-examined paper and one non-examined assessment component.

The course allows students to explore a variety of materials and media, which are applied to working briefs. Students work to produce assessed practical outcomes and have their theoretical understanding assessed by the written examination component.

Specification details (web address)

Design and technology GCSE

Course component breakdown

The course consists of two components as below:

  • Component 1

Written examination: 1 hour and 45 minutes 50% of the qualification focused upon theory based study.

  • Component 2

Non-examined assessment 50% of the qualification which consists of There are four parts to the assessment:

  • 1 – Investigate

This includes investigation of needs and research, and a product specification

  • 2 – Design

This includes producing different design ideas, review of initial ideas, development of design ideas into a chosen design, communication of design ideas and review of the chosen design

  • 3 – Make

This includes manufacture, and quality and accuracy

  • 4 – Evaluate

This includes testing and evaluation.