Welcome to the ICT Department
ICT & Computing offers an exciting curriculum designed to equip students with the skills and knowledge needed for the workplace and further education. The department aims to equip young people for the increasingly technological world of work and to provide them with routes into the ICT & Computing industry.
Students demonstrate a positive enthusiasm for the subject and the department continues to evolve its ICT provision to ensure pupils are equipped to meet the ever changing needs of the technological age.
A varied curriculum is offered which gives every pupil the opportunity to succeed.
The department aims to:
- Stimulate curiosity, interest and enjoyment in the study of ICT.
- Raise pupil awareness of the ways in which ICT tools and information sources can help their work.
- Promote the use of ICT to produce work for other curriculum areas.
- Provide pupils with a rich ICT experience in preparation for modern society.
MACS has invested heavily in ICT – the school offers 9 fully equipped suites of networked PCs, all running Microsoft Office 2013 along with other industry recognised software.
A brief description of KS3 course
ICT is taught via discrete ICT lessons in years 7, 8 and 9, following National Curriculum guidelines. Pupils are taught to become increasingly independent users of ICT, aware of the way in which ICT tools and information sources can help them in their work. Pupils are encouraged to communicate their experiences, compare the use of ICT with other methods and discuss the wider impact of ICT on society. ICT is used to analyse and interpret data and produce new information from which conclusions may be drawn.
The department concentrates on skills development in the areas of word processing, desktop publishing, spreadsheets and databases as well as graphics, video/sound editing and web design throughout Years 7 - 9. Safe use of the Internet is also discussed along with how to search for information. This enables pupils to develop a growing awareness of the relevance and plausibility of information and begin to identify and question bias in sources.
An introduction to coding in Years 8 and 9 offers pupils the chance to develop a more computational mindset, utilising thinking skills such as abstraction, decomposition, pattern matching, algorithm design, and data representation. Students with these skills will be in high demand by all industrial, government, and academic sectors, not just information technology.
A brief description of KS4 course
The Certificate in Digital Applications (CiDA) 2012 – Next Generation is offered in one option and students achieve the equivalent of an A* – C qualification at GCSE. There are no written ‘pen and paper’ examinations – instead there are two units to be completed. Unit one consists of an online exam in web page design; for the second unit students will be assessed by the practical work they produce throughout the two years of the course.
Unit 1 – ‘Developing Web Products’ gives students the knowledge and skills they need to produce attention grabbing web products using web authoring software, multimedia assets and navigation features.
Unit 2 – gives students the opportunity to complete one of three optional units:
- Creative Multimedia
- Artwork and Imaging
- Game Making
Each optional unit involves the production of an electronic portfolio (e-portfolio) which is submitted to the examination board for final assessment. For each optional unit, students are provided with a Summative Project Brief (SPB). This gives clear instructions on what students need to do for each element of the project. Students have unlimited access to all the information necessary to pass the unit.
More information is available here: Options Sheet for Parents (CiDA_SECTOR.GUIDE-final). This pdf highlights the main features of the course.
A brief description of KS5 course
The department has experience in the delivery of a range of courses for sixth form study.
The traditional A Level ICT specification encourages candidates to become discerning users of ICT, developing a broad range of skills and understanding which can lead to further learning or employment. There are two written examination papers (worth 60% overall) and two coursework units.
The BTEC ICT Level 3 course is designed to provide a specialist, work-related qualification in a range of vocational sectors. It gives learners the knowledge, understanding and skills that they need to prepare for employment. The qualification provides progression opportunities to higher education, degree and professional development programmes within universities and other institutions.
The new Computer Science A Level specification provides a framework for exploring how computers are used in the solution of a variety of problems. Learners develop their knowledge of computing theory and put this into practical use, demonstrating their skills in programming.