ICT Department

The aim of the ICT department is to develop confidence in using applications, competency in applying ICT knowledge and develop a greater understanding and interest in a subject that cannot be avoided and is a part of everyone’s life. 

The department

There are three main strands to ICT: digital literacy (The Junior Curriculum), computing (GCSE) and information systems (A Level). The department is fortunate to have staff who complement each other with their skills.  Miss McConnachie is very creative and takes a lead role in the Junior Curriculum (as well as tutoring in Westminster House, teaching A level Sports Science and being Head of Netball) whilst I, Mr Millbery, specialise in programming and databases (as well as being an A level examiner, chief examiner for years and running DoE, BTEC, Army Section of the CCF and heading up our Leadership provision).

The ICT department has an extensive library that all pupils are welcome to make use of to extend their knowledge and understanding of the subject, whether they are studying it at GCSE or A level.  Areas of ICT, such as mobile app development and robotics are encouraged through clubs.  Pupils take part annually in The Alan Turing Cryptography Competition, where they have to break encrypted messages.

Junior Curriculum

The Junior Curriculum exposes pupils to a range of applications.  The traditional Microsoft Office elements - Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Access are introduced and reinforced with the focus on transferable skills that can be utilised on other subject areas.  The creative elements of digital literacy: Movie Maker, Audacity, Photoshop, Dreamweaver and Flash are introduced and pupils are allowed to experiment and encouraged to combine different elements, for example a web page that includes images, sound and flash.  Elements of computing are introduced through programming – starting with Logo and then progressing to Scratch and Python, pupils are taught how to think logically and basic problem solving techniques.  At the end of the Junior Curriculum students have been exposed to a large range of applications and have increased their confidence, particularly when encountering software they are unfamiliar with.

GCSE curriculum

At GCSE we offer the OCR Computing Specification.  There are three modules.  There are two coursework modules (60%) and one theory module (40%).  In the coursework pupils will investigate a problem, design a solution and then write a programme to solve it.  Programming languages taught include Python, Visual Basic, JavaScript and Small Basic.  The theory covers Binary, Logic Gates, Networking, Databases and ICT Law.  A GCSE computing student will have highly developed logical thinking skills and be able to look at a problem and plan a solution.  They will be able to break a task down, test it and develop solutions to overcome any problems they encounter.

A Level curriculum

At A Level we offer the CIE A Level ICT specification.  The course is comprised of two units for AS, with a further two units for those students who choose to continue to study for the full A Level.

Mr Glen Millbery
Director of ICT

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