We hope to inspire students to create well designed and made quality products. The Department is very well equipped and has an award-winning history for high standards of imaginative work in resistant materials and graphic media.
"Happiness lies in the joy of achievement and the thrill of creative success" F. Roosevelt.
All Year 9 students follow a foundation course in Design & Technology to develop their creative, analytical and problem solving abilities as well as their graphic presentation skills and practical workshop capabilities. The course is designed to give students a full flavour of the many aspects of Design & Technology and to provide an insight into the complex world of product design and manufacture. It also serves as a springboard to further study at GCSE, A-Level and University.
Students will build on their experiences in Year 7 and Year 8, improving their knowledge and skills. They will use traditional and cutting edge production methods and will work in wood and plastic, utilising the 3D printer and the laser cutter to produce high quality products. Year 9 will be introduced to a number of influential designers through individual prep assignments. They will be encouraged to make decisions independently and use their creativity to produce original and stylish designs. Students will use 2D and 3D software to enhance their folder work alongside more traditional drawing skills.
Projects change regularly and are chosen for their ability to enthuse and inspire the students. All projects will have a practical element and all will enable students to achieve success.
GCSE RESISTANT MATERIALS
Design & Technology (Resistant Materials Technology) aims to develop understanding of the manufactured world through the study of materials and manufacturing processes and through students’ own experience of designing and making products.
Year 10 focuses on core skills in graphics, computer aided design and manufacture (CAD/CAM), as well as workshop manufacture in a range of timbers, metals and plastics.
There is a strong emphasis on learning through doing as students develop their skills through a series of mini design-and-make projects. Students design before making, planning a sequence of production, using research and focusing on quality of manufacture. They are encouraged to develop their presentation skills and to use originality and ingenuity in the solving of practical problems.
In Year 11, foundation skills are put to the test through the Controlled Assessment (CA). This is a coursework element of approximately 45 hours in which students will design and make a prototype product chosen from a wide range of contexts set by the AQA examination board. Typically each student will prepare 20-25 pages of A3 supporting design work along with test pieces, models and a fully functioning and tested prototype. All Year 11 students display their project work in the end-of-year Open Weekend Exhibition.
Typical Controlled Assessment projects can range from MP3/iPod amplifiers and gadget tidies to flat-pack furniture, jewellery or garden products such as a barbecues or outdoor lighting.
Knowledge of materials, manufacturing processes, environmental issues, systems and control are tested alongside the students’ own design skills in the 2 hour examination at the end of Year 11. Students are able to draw on their own design and manufacturing experience and understanding of batch production and quality control in this examination.
Paper 1 - a 2 hour exam worth up to 50% of the final mark.
Non-exam Assessment (NEA) consisting of approximately 30-35 hours of work to design and make a project. This accounts for up to 50% of the final mark.
Design & Technology sits very well with both Art and with Science and Maths and can lead to further study at A-Level. Careers in Engineering, Architecture, Industrial Design, Graphic and Interior Design are all possible.
Design & Technology teaches management and planning of extended tasks and it is important to note that the analytical and problem solving skills brought about through its study are universal and transferable to a myriad of career paths.
This course is designed to give students a full understanding of modern product design and manufacture through a detailed study of materials, production techniques, environmental issues, aesthetics and related technologies. There is a strong focus on the target market and on quality control techniques employed in large-scale production.
Students get a full flavour of designing and manufacturing in a wide range of materials through the research, development and building of their own prototype products. They employ traditional sketching and modelling techniques alongside the latest CAD/CAM facilities, within a fully equipped design studio and multi-material manufacturing workshop.
Visiting speakers and industrial visits help to forge a tangible link to the real world of product design and to open students’ eyes to the many career pathways available to them.
Product Design marries well with both Art & Design or with Science, Business Studies and Maths, leading to many possible careers including Engineering, Industrial Design and Production, Graphic Design, Architecture, Fashion and Interior Design.