This course sees students develop a set of skills which are recognised as being distinct and valuable. Although coding is important, the course has more to offer, including abstraction and decomposition to think through problems.
- This course provides the ideal foundation for those students who wish to pursue ICT or Computing at degree level, or as a career.
- The practical assessments (examination & project based) contribute a significant amount towards the final grade.
Candidates will gain skills that can be transferred indirectly into many disciplines.
This will test the student’s ability to programme, as well as their theoretical knowledge of CS on:
- fundamentals of programming
- fundamentals of data structures
- fundamentals of algorithms
- theory of computation
- systematic approach to problem solving
It will make use of preliminary material, a skeleton programme with test data for use in the examination.
This will explore other topics including the fundamentals of:
- data representation
- computer systems
- computer organisation & architecture
- consequences of uses of computing
- fundamentals of communication & networking
- databases & big-data
- functional programming.
These are examined with compulsory short-answer and extended-answer questions..
Non-Examined-Assessment (NEA):This looks the student's ability to use the knowledge and skills gained through the course to solve or investigate a practical problem. Students will be expected to follow a systematic approach to problem solving.
GCSE in computing at Level 6 or above is recommended and a high Level in GCSE mathematics is also strongly advised. There is content that builds towards Boolean Algebra, number representation & bases, along with the complexity of algorithms. There is a steep learning curve & you must be resilient to recover from mistakes you will make as you gain experience in coding. You must be independent, correcting and improving your skills as you progress. If you have no formal computing qualifications, but have significant interest and experience with coding/programming, you are encouraged to speak with the subject leader about your suitability for this A Level course.
All applications to Gravesend Grammar School Sixth Form must be made directly via our website. Our sixth form information evening is on Wednesday 13th January at 7pm, applications open on Thursday 14th January.
Computer Science is a good platform from which to progress into a technical role or degree course. It will provide you with an excellent skill set that is easily transferable between subjects. Understanding how to break a problem into its constituent parts is essential in solving real world problems. The solution may involve algorithm design, software, the internet or just a pen and paper!
Note: If you are intending to study Computer Science at University, it is recommended that you study A Level Mathematics as well.