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Technology & Design

Subject Overview

All pupils study Technology in Years 8, 9 and 10. This Foundation course builds the skills needed for everyday life and prepares the pupils for options at GCSE. Key aspects of the course are the design process (which give pupils problem solving skills that are transferable to all areas of school and life), practical skills for manufacturing projects using a range of hand tools and machines, communication skills to develop verbal and graphical presentation methods and an understanding of Technology in our society.

Within Technology there is the option of four courses at Key stage 4:

  • GCSE: Design and Technology

  • GCSE: Y11 BTEC 3D Art and Design (Level 2)/Y12 Graphic Products

  • Occupational Studies: Carpentry and Bench Joinery

  • Occupational Studies: Graphic Design and Interior Design

Members of Staff

Mr A. McFarland (Head of Department)
Mr D. Young
Mr R. Caskey
Mr H. McElwee (Technician)

GCSE: Design and Technology

The study of Design and Technology seeks to prepare students to participate confidently and successfully in an increasingly technological world. It helps students to be aware of, and learn from, wider influences on design and technology, including historical, social/cultural, environmental and economic factors.

The course includes the design process, the impact of new and emerging technologies, energy sources, modern and smart materials, the function of mechanical devices, basic electronic systems, the use of programmable components, types, properties and uses of materials.

The exam is in two components:

  • Component 1: 50% - Written exam

  • Component 2: 50% - Design and make coursework

GCSE: Graphic Products

Graphic Products is intended for students who have chosen to specialise in Architecture, Product Design, Interior and Furniture Design, using industrial graphical techniques and CAD (Computer Aided Design).

The course allows students to develop free hand graphical techniques and use architectural and engineering software to assist their design work.

Occupational Studies

Examining board : CCEA

The Occupational Studies specifications are designed to be accessible to a wide range of learners to help to raise levels of achievement, allowing learners to apply their knowledge in practical, work-related situations and contexts. They emphasise learning by doing, which helps learners to develop important transferable skills and facilitates learning with an occupational and employability focus at Key Stage 4 and beyond. They are flexible enough to meet specific industries’ needs while providing a coherent and balanced qualification and enable progression to other courses and to training and employment.

To achieve an award in Occupational Studies, learners must complete two units. One is completed in year 11 and one in year 12.

Depending on their performance in the assessment, learners can achieve an award at

  1. NQF Level 2 (the same level as a GCSE at A*–C)

  2. NQF Level 1 (the same level as a GCSE at D–G)

  3. CCEA First Skills Certificate.

For each unit in Occupational Studies, tutors set practical assignments that give learners both the opportunity to produce and test the range of skills described in the specification. The tasks can allow them to show evidence of their learning in a variety of ways. This evidence is gathered into learner portfolios that show how the learners have met the requirements of the specification and the entire final award is based on this evidence. There are no external examinations.

Carpentry and joinery

This unit is designed to provide vocational skills in carpentry and joinery. The unit includes:

  • consideration of health and safety issues with respect to activities in carpentry and joinery;

  • consideration of career opportunities related to working with wood in the construction industry;

  • an appreciation of environmental issues relating to timber;

  • the appropriate use of basic carpentry and joinery hand tools and hand-held power tools;

  • construction of a range of carpentry and joinery models relating to site-based activities, incorporating a wide range of joints and jointing methods; and

  • a review and evaluation of performance.


(a) Graphic Design

This unit is designed to develop skills in graphic design and associated activities. Learners will develop skills in planning, producing, and presenting a graphic design project (based on a client brief) using industry standard procedures. This unit includes:

  • consideration of health and safety issues in the graphic design industry;

  • consideration of employment opportunities in the graphic design industry;

  • the principles of graphic design;

  • responding to a design brief;

  • generation of ideas;

  • using design software;

  • presenting the final outcome;

  • consideration of environmental issues in the graphic design industry; and

  • a review and evaluation of performance.

(b) Interior Design

This unit is designed to give learners a basic understanding of the skills and knowledge required to work in interior design. Learners will work to a design brief and learn how to survey and inspect buildings and spaces. They will learn how to draw up plans and to cost a range of materials. Learners will have a basic introduction to colour theory and design skills and will acquire a basic knowledge of a range of home interior design techniques. Learners will also cover texture and simple paint techniques, as well as a basic knowledge of lighting, flooring, walls and windows. Learners will realise their design ideas through developing a design for a home interior. They will also cover health and safety and environmental issues. This unit includes:

  • consideration of health and safety issues in interior design;

  • inspecting and surveying spaces to create design plans;

  • drawing skills;

  • using lighting techniques, colour schemes, layout, texture and function;

  • consideration of career opportunities in interior design;

  • consideration of environmental issues in interior design; and

  • a review and evaluation of performance.

Post 16 Course

BTEC 3D Design

This qualification if for those who wish to follow a career in architecture, interior architecture or interior design. This specialist BTEC Level 2 qualification has been developed specifically to support those who wish to develop the fundamental creative, practical and theoretical skills required to pursue a career in spatial design, and is ideal if you wish to progress to degree level study and develop the essential skills, knowledge and understanding necessary to start a career in the spatial design industry. You will have access to a range of resources dedicated to the study of architecture and interior design. Our facilities include a range of equipment for use in 2D and 3D visualization, and model making. Our industry standard CAD studio includes SketchUp and Photoshop.



High School

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