Design & Technology

Department staff:

Mr M Whitaker: Subject Leader

Miss D Tranter

Mrs E Jackson

Mr R L Hewitt

Mr S J Furness

Mr T G Pollard: Department Technician


Key Stage 3:

Overview of the course

In design and technology pupils combine practical and technological skills with creative thinking to design and make products 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.

Working in stimulating contexts that provide a range of opportunities and draw on the local community and the wider world, pupils identify needs and opportunities for developing creative solutions. They respond with ideas and products, 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. As they do so, they evaluate present and past designers, and understand the effect of modern and traditional technologies. Through design and technology pupils develop confidence in using practical skills and become discriminating users of products. They apply their creative thinking and learn to innovate.


What will I learn?

·      how computer aided design and computer aided manufacture are used in the design and manufacturing industry;

·      how to use simple computer graphics programmes;

·      an introduction to CAD/CAM skills including the use of different CAD/CAM equipment;

·      how to design for a specific market;

·      how to incorporate commercial components into projects;

·      how to finish wood, metal and plastics to a high standard;

·      how to design and build an electric circuit using a printed circuit board;

·      how to apply suitable finishes to consumer products.

·      about the use of line and shade to produce effective drawings;

·      about the main aspects of workshop health and safety;

·      how to mark out, measure, cut and shape a range of different materials for example; wood, metal and plastic;

·      how to recognise common plastics, wood and metals;

·      about different types of mechanisms, structures and linkages.

What will I do?

·      develop a wide range of practical skills;

·      use a  range of tools and equipment;

·      develop a range of feasible design ideas;

·      investigate, analyse and evaluate;

·      learn the technical knowledge of a range of different materials;

·      use CAD software to design products that can be manufactured using a laser cutter;

·      mark out, cut and shape a range of materials including wood, metal and plastic;

·      use a drilling machine, sanding machine and Hegner saw;

·      work as a member of a team to solve a design and make problems.


Year 7

·      a money box;

·      a collage picture;

·      a CAD/CAM project.

Year 8

Items such as:

·      a project incorporating mechanisms;

·      a project incorporating structures;

·      an electronic night-light.

Year 9

Items such as:

·      a novelty clock;

·      an MP3 docking station.


Key Stage 4: Design Technology

What will you study?

GCSE Design and Technology will prepare students to participate confidently and successfully in an increasingly technological world. The GCSE allows students to study core technical and designing and making principles, including a broad range of design processes, materials techniques and equipment.


Students will have the opportunity to study specialist technical principles in one of the following:

  1. Papers and boards (Graphic Products);
  2. Timber, Metal based materials or Polymers (Resistant Materials);
  3. Electronic and mechanical systems (Electronics).


You will choose to specialise in one of the three areas outlined above.


How it’s assessed

  • Written exam: 2 hours, 100 marks, 50% of the total GCSE
  • Non-exam assessment: Substantial design and make task, 50% of the total GCSE


Exam Assessment

  • 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-exam assessment

Students will be required to undertake a small-scale design and make task and produce a final prototype based on a design brief produced by the student.


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