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Design & Technology

Welcome to Design & Technology

I hope you find this page helpful in understanding the Design and Technology programme at Newman School.

If you have any queries regarding the subject, please do not hesitate to get in touch with me.

Rebekah Hurst
Head of Design & Technology

Newman Catholic School, Carlisle

Extra Curricular

Monday: Open workshop with Mrs Hurst - Wednesday: GCSE club with Mr Ord


The role and impact of technology in both our personal and working lives is ever growing. Understanding how people shape technology and how technology shapes people’s interactions with each other and the natural world is important not only for those who research, develop and implement new technologies but also for all those people and organisations that have to use those technologies in their working and personal lives.

Key Stage 3

Students at Key Stage 3 are assessed on 5 areas in line with the National Curriculum. These are:

  • Designing
  • Making
  • Technical Knowledge
  • Evaluating
  • Cooking and nutrition

(Please note: students who do not do cooking and nutrition will have the average taken of the other 4 areas)

Year 7

Pupils are introduced to Design and Technology with small design and make activities in a selection of areas which could include Resistant Materials, Graphics, Systems and Control, Food Technology and Textiles. All subject areas have generic areas that are collectively known as Product Design. Assessment will be made throughout the year and focused around the following key areas of Technology:

  • Research and Investigation
  • Development of Ideas
  • Planning
  • Testing and Evaluating
  • Prototypes and making skills

Year 8

Students continue to develop their skills and understanding of the areas within the heading of Product Design. In the same style as Year 7 lessons, pupils could undertake design and make activities in the areas of Resistant Materials, Graphics, Food Technology, Textiles and Systems and Control. They are given the opportunity to build on their depth of knowledge, with the same key areas of assessment being used to student progress to be monitored.

Year 9

The Year 9 Design and Technology course builds on the previous progress of the students and allows their confidence to grow. Again, students can undertake lessons from the different specialisms of Graphics, Food, Textiles, Systems and Control or Resistant Materials to prepare them for GCSE level if they opt to continue on with the subject.

Key Stage 4

The Design and Technology Curriculum in Years 10 and 11 aims to continue the development of students’ skills in designing and making.

AQA Assessment

New GCSE Specification from September 2017 (current year10)

GCSE Design and Technology

Controlled assessment (written folder and practical outcome) 50%

Final examination 50%

Current Yr11 are taking the last GCSE qualification with the AQA exam board. Their titles are GCSE:

AQA Assessment:

Controlled assessment (written folder and practical outcome) 60%

Final examination 40%

  • Resistant Materials Technology
  • Product Design

Resistant Materials Technology

Resistant Materials focuses fundamentally on the use of wood, metal and plastic through a range of designing and making tasks.

Year 10 offers students the chance to use a range of different materials and build their confidence when using a range of tools and machines. Students will also learn how to draw accurately as well as studying about smart materials and issues such as the environment to learn how it impacts on design.

Year 11 allows students to undertake a major design and make task that accounts for 60% of their final grade. The remaining 40% is a written exam that will require students to answer questions that test their knowledge, some of which require a piece of extended writing to be produced.

Product Design

Product Design combines the areas of Design and Technology to create a study of products in general.

Year 10 offers students the opportunity to gain experience a range of different materials and tools as well as the use of CAD/CAM. Students will also learn about graphic design, logos and packaging.

Year 11 allows students to undertake a major design and make task that accounts for 60% of their final grade. The remaining 40% is a written exam that will require students to answer questions that test their knowledge, some of which require a piece of extended writing to be produced.

GCSE VCert Food and Cookery Level 2

This qualification is suitable for learners aged 14-16 studying their Key Stage 4 curriculum. This qualification is designed for learners who have an interest in food and cookery. It will provide learners with experience of using different cooking techniques and methods to enable them to use these within further education or apprenticeships. It will give them a basic understanding of the skills required for a career in food.

  • The industry – food and drink
  • Job roles, employment opportunities and relevant training
  • Health, safety and hygiene
  • Food preparation, cooking and presentation
  • Nutrition and menu planning
  • Costing and portion control
  • Specialist equipment
  • Communication and record keeping
  • Environmental considerations

Level 2 First Award in Construction and the Built Environment

The BTEC Level 2 Extended Certificate in Construction provides an opportunity for students to study and gain experience of the construction industry. The elements of the course are taken over 2 years.

  • Unit 1 External examination
  • Unit 2 Construction and Design
  • Unit 6 Exploring Carpentry and Joinery
  • Unit 3 Exploring mathematical and scientific principles

Students study both technical and practical aspects of the industry with occasional site visits arranged to develop a more work related context to the course.

The BTEC Level 2 Extended Certificate in Construction course looks at why the construction industry is an important sector within the UK economy and the key role it plays in all our lives. Students will gain an overview of the types of activities undertaken by those working in the construction industry such as job roles and projects. Students will also gain knowledge and understanding of health, safety and welfare in the construction industry. The practical elements of the course focus on carpentry and joinery, enabling students to construct frames using appropriate hand tools, materials, and personal protective equipment.

Key Stage 5

Product Design AS/A2 The course is designed to develop students’ graphic skills through computer aided designing and their practical skills by studying two separate projects. All this will culminate in the Media Art and Technology Exhibition evening when the students’ work will be on display in the school hall. The studying of Product Design at KS5 will require students to complete a significant amount of personal revision to ensure they are prepared for the written examinations.


As well as degree courses in Product Design other Degree options are Mechanical Engineering, Fashion Design, Architecture and Industrial Design. Many universities also offer Degrees that combine subjects such as Sports Technology and Computer Aided Design.

Course Outline

Year 12 AS Examinations


Unit 1 – PROD1

Materials, Components and Application

50% of AS, 25% of A2

2 hour written paper 80 marks

Based primarily on Materials and Components and consisting of three sections: Section 1 contains compulsory limited response questions; Section 2 offers a choice of one question from two; Section 3 contains one compulsory question.

Unit 2 – PROD2

Learning through Designing and Making 50% of AS, 25% of A level Coursework: approximately 50 hours 80 marks. Written (or electronic) design portfolio. Manufactured outcome(s): Jewellery design and box and children’s flat pack furniture projects. Coursework may take a number of forms: a simple design-and-make project, two smaller projects or a portfolio of work.

Course Outline

Year 13


Unit 3 – PROD3

Design and Manufacture 25% of A level 2 hour written paper 84 marks.

Based primarily on Design and Manufacture and consisting of two sections. Candidates answer three questions: one question from three in each section, plus a final question from either section. Includes synoptic assessment.

Unit 4 – PROD4

Design and Making Practice 25% of A level. Coursework approximately 60 hours 85 marks

Written (or electronic) design folder. Manufactured outcome. Candidates submit evidence of a simple, substantial designing and making activity of own choice.

Course Requirements

Students need to be self-motivated and enjoy problem solving. Grade C or above in any of the Design and Technology options is desirable, but not essential.

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