Business Studies



Design Technology
















Design and Technology


In Design and Technology students combine practical and technological skills with creative thinking to design and make products and systems that meet human needs. They learn to use current technologies and consider the impact of future technological developments. They learn to think creatively and intervene to improve the quality of life, solving problems as individuals and members of a team.


Key Stage 3

At Key Stage 3 our students are offered a wide variety of opportunities to access the Design and Technology national curriculum. Exciting and innovative schemes of work have been created to develop our students’ abilities and creativity, providing sound skills and experiences ready for transition to Key Stage 4.

In Years 7 and 8 students access specific DT lessons with a focus on working in the workshop with a variety of Resistant Materials for one hour per week

In Year 9 students access specific DT lessons for 5 hours per fortnight.


Year 7

In Year 7 students work independently with a variety of materials and components to produce a mood light, which is accompanied by a concise, guided design portfolio.

They are introduced to CAD / CAM utilising Techsoft 2D Design and the laser cutters as well as soldering, electronic components and some basic wood and Acrylic techniques.


Year 8

In Year 8 students are introduced to Metal as a resistant material and learn how to braze successfully and independently.  They work through a wide variety of new skills and techniques using both hand tools and machinery.

Students learn about metal finishing techniques and build on their CAD / CAM work from Year 7 to manufacture a personalised stand for their balancing figure project.


Year 9

In Year 9 students work through a series of mini projects and design and make assignments designed to motivate and interest them, building on their previous experiences in Years 7 and 8. 

They utilise all of their skills to begin designing and making independently of each other with a given or developed brief.

Students use all of the available tools and machinery and are introduced to 3D printing as a new technology.


Key Stage 4

AQA Design and Technology

The new GCSE places greater emphasis on understanding and applying iterative design processes. Students will use their creativity and imagination to design and make prototypes that solve real and relevant problems, considering their own and others' needs, wants and values.

Our GCSE allows students to study core technical and designing and making principles, including a broad range of design processes, materials, techniques and equipment. They will also have the opportunity to study specialist technical principles in greater depth.


Core technical principles

In order to make effective design choices students will need a breadth of core technical knowledge and understanding that consists of:

  • New and emerging technologies
  • Energy generation and storage
  • Developments in new materials
  • Systems approach to designing
  • Mechanical devices
  • Materials and their working properties

All of this section must be taught and all will be assessed.


Specialist technical principles

In addition to the core technical principles, all students should develop an in-depth knowledge and understanding of the following specialist technical principles:

  • Selection of materials or components
  • Forces and stresses
  • Ecological and social footprint
  • Sources and origins
  • Using and working with materials
  • Stock forms, types and sizes
  • Scales of production
  • Specialist techniques and processes
  • Surface treatments and finishes


Each specialist technical principle should be delivered through at least one material category or system. Not all of the principles outlined above relate to every material category or system, but all must be taught. The categories through which the principles can be delivered are:

  • Papers and boards
  • Timber based materials
  • Metal based materials
  • Polymers
  • Textile based materials
  • Electronic and mechanical systems 


Designing and making principles

They will need to demonstrate and apply knowledge and understanding of designing and making principles in relation to the following areas:

  • Investigation, primary and secondary data
  • Environmental, social and economic challenge
  • The work of others
  • Design strategies
  • Communication of design ideas
  • Prototype development
  • Selection of materials and components
  • Tolerances
  • Material management
  • Specialist tools and equipment
  • Specialist techniques and processes



What's assessed

  • Core technical principles
  • Specialist technical principles
  • Designing and making principles


 How it's assessed


  • Written exam: 2 hours
  • 100 marks
  • 50% of GCSE



  • Section A – Core technical principles (20 marks): A mixture of multiple choice and short answer questions assessing a breadth of technical knowledge and understanding.
  • Section B – Specialist technical principles (30 marks): Several short answer questions (2–5 marks) and one extended response to assess a more in depth knowledge of technical principles.
  • Section C – Designing and making principles (50 marks): A mixture of short answer and extended response questions.


Non Examined Assessment

Practical application of:

  • Core technical principles
  • Specialist technical principles
  • Designing and making principles
  • 30–35 hours approx
  • 100 marks
  • 50% of GCSE


The NEA is a substantial design and make task

Assessment criteria:

  • Identifying and investigating design possibilities
  • Producing a design brief and specification
  • Generating design ideas
  • Developing design ideas
  • Realising design ideas
  • Analysing & evaluating
  • In the spirit of the iterative design process, the above should be awarded holistically where they take place and not in a linear manner
  • Contextual challenges to be released annually by AQA on 1 June in the year prior to the submission of the NEA
  • Students will produce a prototype and a portfolio of evidence
  • Work will be marked by teachers and moderated by AQA



The facilities provided within the faculty play an important part in encouraging our students to achieve in terms of making all possible opportunities accessible.

Specific rooms include C01, C02 and the Create breakout area

C01 is predominantly used as an electronics base/graphics base and some light Design and technology work.

C02 has full heat treatment facilities including brazing, welding and casting as well as the usual machinery including engineering and wood lathes, pillar drills, sanders and finishing equipment.


The Create breakout area is equipped with a CNC router, a Roland Vinyl cutter, 2 laser cutters and 2 3D printers.



On a Wednesday evening ‘The Bash it and Bodge it Club’ meet in C02 to undertake a wide variety of projects, including building steam engines and petrol engines as well as engine restoration and other engineering challenges.


The workshops are often open on a Wednesday evening to provide opportunities for students to either catch up or improve upon their curriculum work.