Using a range of tools and equipment, in Years 7 – 9 students learn how to safely design and make products from the three main resistant materials: wood, plastics and metal.
Pupils have the opportunity to practise drawing, researching, designing, making and evaluating. The importance of technical drawing and rendering is taught to help communicate design ideas. In Year 7 an introduction to wood will be covered. Safe use of a coping saw, files, chisels and pillar drill will enable pupils to design and make a Paper Gripper product. Pupils further their knowledge in Year 8; learning about the theory and properties of Plastic. Through a series of small focussed mini projects; we cover lamination, cutting, shaping and fine finishing, using the polishing machine and laser engraving. We also learn basic CAD CAM which is used to embellish designs with vinyl. In Year 9 pupils will undertake several Product design tasks furthering their knowledge of processes already studied, whilst learning about metal and its properties. They will design, make and package two Zodiac key fob products. We will learn about casting in pewter and silver soldering copper and brass, additional practical opportunities can include etching, enamelling and stamping to embellish designs to make two different key fob products one of which will then be packaged in a blister pack design.
Health and safety in the workshop, using hand tools and equipment and range of practical skills help teach the processes and properties of Resistant Materials. Safe procedures using various hand tools to include: hand saws, screwdrivers, clamps, chisels and files. Safe procedures using various large equipment to include: Fret saw, Belt sander, Pillar drill, 3D printer, laser cutter, Polishing mops, Dremel, Vinyl Cutter and Brother Scan and Cut. Health and safety and heat treatment using the Gas torch and Enamelling kiln with Metal processes.
Pupils’ work is assessed formally at the end of each carousel through the product outcomes and design folio work. Practical work will be assessed and levels awarded based on the whole task and nature of the design undertaken. Pupils will be given clear direction as to how to improve both their knowledge and skills. Informal assessment takes place during lessons in the form of self and peer assessment as well as written and verbal feedback from the teacher.
Additional educational experiences
- CGI Technology Challenge
Design and Technology involves designing and making in a practical context using a range of materials, media and processes. Students will gain technical awareness, initiative, resourcefulness and ingenuity as well as the skills required for their future within a rapidly changing technological society.
There is an emphasis on CAD/CAM as well as more traditional making techniques. Products can be made with wood, metal, plastic or graphic processes such as sublimation onto ceramic or textile products. Artistic skills used in graphic communication will also be developed through packaging, labels and instructions which are a key part of product design. Students will identify, consider and solve problems through creative thinking, planning and design.
Design is all around us. We all recognise the incredible branding and funky modern designs of Apple and Swatch. Making decisions about the look and function of a logo, furniture item, or other everyday object such as jewellery is exciting, creative and inspiring. Maybe you will follow in the footsteps of famous designers such as Dyson or Orla Kiely or companies known for interesting product design such as Alessi, Heals and Habitat.
Students study graphic design and branding through a logo-related brief such as swatch watch or coffee shop project, then we work in resistant materials developing practical skills learning to plan for manufacture by producing an orthographic projection working drawing and cutting list. After this exploratory period students decide which path they would like to follow for their personal coursework either a graphic design or Resistant Materials route.
Controlled Assessment (50% of final grade)
In Year 11 students will complete a controlled assessment where they design and make a product from a chosen brief working in a material or combination of materials of their choice. The supporting A3 portfolio documents the design process. This is internally assessed and externally moderated.
Product Design Paper (25% of final grade)
Externally assessed. Includes written and sketched responses which test product design theory.
Specialism Paper (25% of final grade)
Externally assessed. Includes written and sketched responses which test specialist content of graphic design or resistant materials.
Is Design & Technology the right choice for me?
It is advantageous for pupils to have studied either technology or art at GCSE. We would expect a student to show a high level of aptitude in subjects with a similar skills base such as Art or be able to show a good portfolio of design work. Good drawing skills, an enjoyment of problem-solving and of working with a range of materials, experience with design software and excellent time management are all crucial skills. The practical and design elements of the course are underpinned with research on designers past and present and a knowledge of materials and manufacturing processes necessary to make your final products in either specialism. It can be combined with Art by students looking to pursue Art, Design or Architecture.
What will I gain from A-Level Design & Technology?
This course is suitable for students who may want to pursue further studies in Graphic design, 3-Dimensional design, Product Design, Architecture, Industrial Design, and Engineering.
Enter Design and Technology (DT) competitions, subscribe to a subject related magazine, lead a DT club for younger students, attend trips and visits arranged by school but also take the initiative to explore DT independently.
1 (Year 12)
Personal creative enquiry
An extended, exploratory project/portfolio.
Internally assessed and externally moderated. 40%
2 (Year 13)
A major in-depth critical, practical, theoretical investigative project.
An extended written element of 1000 words.
Internally assessed and externally moderated. 36%
3 (Year 13)
Externally set assignment
Part 1: preparatory study period.
Part 2: 15-hour period of sustained focus work .
Exam Assessment. Internally assessed and externally moderated. 24%