Design & Technology

The main aim of Design and Technology is to encourage pupils to be involved in their own learning through a project-based approach, with each project addressing a different area of technology. As a result, new skills and knowledge are developed in an interesting and stimulating manner.

Key Stage 3

Year 7

Timber Memo Holder - The main focus of the first project is working with resistant materials. This helps to develop the skills needed to cut and join materials accurately. Pupils produce a timber memo holder for a notepad and pencil.

LED Torch - The second project aims to improve graphical skills by designing and making an electronic LED torch and its plastic case. The pupils will then design the packaging of the product, making it as realistic as possible.

Year 8

Projects increase in complexity and aim to challenge the pupils further. Novelty Coat Hook - The first project in Year 8 involves pupils designing and making a simple mechanical coat hook. Pupils produce a standard body by cutting, shaping and gluing timber together. Then, using graphical skills, they produce their own designs to create an individual and unique coat hook.

Art Deco Clocks - This project is intended to improve the quality of pupils’ graphical work by incorporating the use of Computer Aided Design (CAD) software. The pupils produce a detailed design folder of ideas and go on to manufacture a high quality working clock. Assessment - Throughout the Key Stage, work is assessed using National Curriculum targets and levels. Pupils complete a variety of assessment tasks and specific targets are set by staff to raise overall achievement and attainment levels.

Year 9

MP3 Amplifier - This project is intended to allow pupils to produce a high quality product by using jigs and templates to make the outer case. The project also gives pupils the opportunity to solder electronic components onto a PCB in order to assemble the circuit itself. The design element of this project teaches the pupils to use CAD software to produce a 3D model of the outer case and then produce a drawing showing measurements of the product.

Mechanical Toy - In this project the pupils develop their understanding of mechanisms by producing a children’s toy.

They use a simple crank and slider mechanism to achieve the movement, which they have to test and modify until it’s the best it can be. The new design skills involved in this project include using a drawing board to produce an orthographic drawing of the frame to be produced.

Key Stage 4

A practical approach applies throughout, encouraging pupils to design and make products with creativity and originality in a variety of activities, using a range of materials and techniques. A working knowledge of woods, metals, plastics and composite materials are required but other materials may also be used.

Aims of the Course

A course based on this specification should encourage pupils to:

1. Demonstrate fully their design and technology capability, which requires them to combine skills with knowledge and understanding in order to design and make quality products

2. Acquire and apply knowledge, skills and understanding through:

  • analysing/evaluating products and processes
  • engaging in focused tasks to develop and demonstrate techniques
  • engaging in strategies for developing ideas, planning and producing products
  • considering how Design & Technology has affected societies both past and present
  • recognising the moral, cultural and environmental issues inherent in design and technology.

This subject is workshop based, but requires the use of graphic techniques and ICT, including Computer Aided Design (CAD), to generate, model and communicate design proposals. Pupils will become familiar with and use, as appropriate, industrial manufacturing processes and techniques including CAD, Computer Aided Manufacture (CAM) and batch and mass production methods. Consideration is also given to moral, ethical, social and cultural issues when designing and making.


Component 1

  • 1 hour 45 minutes
  • 50% of qualification
  • Written exam externally assessed
  • 100 marks.

Component 2

  • Non-examined assessment, internally assessed and externally moderated
  • 50% of qualification
  • 100 marks
  • Three contextual challenges – pupils select one
  • Pupils to produce a porotype project and portfolio of their work (30 A3 pages)
  • Pupils assessed on investigate, design, make and evaluate.

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