Computer Science is rapidly changing every aspect of the world we all live in.
“The best way to predict the future is to implement it.”
David Heinemeier Hansson
When our students leave university and look for their first job, many of them will be applying for roles that do not yet exist. A rounded education should help prepare them for this constantly evolving world. Studying Computer Science teaches students a range of invaluable life skills such as reasoning, logical thinking, problem solving, precision and resourcefulness.
At Sixth Form we offer the OCR Computer Science A Level qualification which helps students understand the core academic principles of computer science. Classroom learning is transferred into creating real-world systems through the creation of an independent programming project. Our A Level will develop the student’s technical understanding and their ability to analyse and solve problems using computational thinking.
We are a small friendly department with a strong emphasis on offering a range of enrichment opportunities which include:
- Support participating in a wide variety of national challenges and competitions e.g. the UK Bebras Computing Challenge, the TCS Oxford Computing Challenge, Alan Turing Cryptography competition, esero CanSat competition and the British Informatics Olympiad.
- Trips to the Wired Next Generation conference, National Museum of Computing, Bletchley Park and the Computing LIVE conference.
- Opportunities to enthuse younger students about computing through volunteering and leading weekly clubs and activities.
The A Level course is a natural sequel to GCSE and is accessible to students who have gained a B grade and above. Students study:
- The characteristics of contemporary processors, input, output and storage devices
- Software and software development
- Exchanging data
- Data types, data structures and algorithms
- Legal, moral, cultural and ethical issues
- Elements of computational thinking
- Problem solving and programming
- Algorithms to solve problems and standard algorithms
Students will also choose a computing problems to work through according to the guidance in the specification that gives:
- An analysis of the problem
- A design of the solution
- The development of the solution
- An evaluation of the solution
Opportunities for university entrance are good and a number of students of Computer Science have been accepted at top universities (including Durham and Southampton) in recent years. Computer Science at A Level is both challenging and rewarding, offering a wide range of experience and the invaluable development of problem solving skills.
Miss P Lewty
Head of Computing