Key Stage 5

Examination Board: AQA

This specification has been designed for students who wish to go on to higher education courses or employment where knowledge of Computing would be beneficial. 

This course, with its emphasis on abstract thinking, general problem solving, algorithmic and mathematical reasoning, scientific and engineering-based thinking, is a good foundation for further study.

In AS level computing students will study two units of work:

COMP1- Problem Solving, Programming, Data Representation and Practical Exercise.
 - Students will learn VB.Net as there programming language.
 - Fundamentals of Problem Solving        
- Fundamentals of Programming
- Fundamentals of Data Representation
- Systems Development Life Cycle

60% of AS, 30% of A Level 2 hour on-screen examination 100 marks.

COMP2- Computer Components, The Stored Program Concept and the Internet
- Fundamentals of Computer Systems
- Fundamental Hardware Elements of Computers
- Machine Level Architecture     
- Hardware Devices
- The Structure of the Internet
- Web page design
- Consequences of Uses of Computing

            40% of AS, 20% of A Level 1 hour written examination, 60 marks.

            Compulsory short answer questions.


At A2 level computing students will study two further units:

COMP3 -Problem Solving, Programming, Operating Systems, Databases and Networking
Problem Solving
  - Programming Concept
  - Standard Algorithms
 - Real Numbers         
- Operating Systems
- Databases
- Communication and Networking

30% of A Level 2 hour 30 minutes written examination, 100 marks.

COMP4 - The Computing Practical Project
The Project provides an opportunity to test the candidates’ understanding of the connections between the different areas of computing. It allows candidates to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding of the systems development life cycle. The skills to be demonstrated include analysis, design, construction/implementation, testing and evaluation of a substantial computer-based task undertaken over an extended period. The report should summarise the work carried out by the candidate.  Projects should be selected which allow candidates to demonstrate practical and problem-solving skills, as well as the techniques of documentation and system testing.

The project topic could involve a computer solution to:  a data-processing problem of an organisation, a scientific or mathematical problem,  a simulation of a real-life situation,  a computer-aided learning system or  a control system / robotics.

Candidates should investigate a real problem associated with a user whose realistic needs should be taken into account when designing the solution. The object of the project is to produce a complete working solution to a problem. Technical competence should be demonstrated in implementing the solution by writing a suitable program or suite of programs. Although it is envisaged that the candidate will develop a complete working solution, the project report need only contain carefully selected samples of evidence in order to demonstrate each skill. The project is centre-assessed and externally moderated. 

20% of A Level, coursework, internally assessed, and moderated by AQA.
75 marks.  Report written by the candidate.

Possible careers: One can study computing and go on to a career in medicine, Law, business, engineering or any type of science.