Sixth Form Course Information

Design and Technology

Course Details

Awarding Body: Pearson Edexcel                 

Staff Contacts: Mrs L Maddison Mr S Brooksby

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Key features of the course

Design and Technology A level is a broad course which enables students to develop their skills, knowledge and understanding in a range of areas.

A main focus of the course is design skills for the future: Student’s will be able to recognise design needs and develop an understanding of how current global issues, including integrating technology, impacts on today’s world. In order to do this they will need knowledge of materials, processes, technological developments and social and moral aspects of design.

As part of the course student’s will:

  • use creativity and imagination
  • identify market needs and opportunities for new products
  • work collaboratively to develop and refine their ideas
  • gain an insight into the creative, engineering and/or manufacturing industries
  • develop an in-depth knowledge and understanding of materials, components and processes
  • be able to make informed design decisions
  • be able to work safely and skilfully to produce high-quality prototypes
  • have a critical understanding of the wider influences on design and technology

Year 12

In year 12 students focus on skill building developing design strategies and also practical skills. Improving their knowledge of materials and processes.

Year 13

In year 13 pupils focus on the contextual challenges, this give you the freedom to take design risks and innovate in a situation where it is safe to test and refine ideas. They will design for a client and understand how to meet the needs.

In this section

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A minimum of 5 GCSE grades 9-4 including English Language. GCSE grade 5 or equivalent in DT or engineering based subject.

Minimum grade 5 in maths – due to maths content on the course
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What could this course
lead on to?

Design students can go on to use their problem solving skills in many walks of life and careers from designers and architects, animators and set designers. Product and automotive design is a big area of design which is a branch of manufacturing in which there are many job roles for designers, including packaging and machinery. There are job roles for designers in almost every industry, robotics, medicine, the food industry. Many designers go on to set up successful business designing and making bespoke items, again this can be wide and varied depending on your area of interest and expertise from clothing to jewellery, furniture and interiors.

Design and technology students develop many transferable skills, the ability to look at the problem within each different context rather than being fixed to areas makes then very employable.
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Future prospects
and careers

The course will support access to Art and Design foundation courses if you are unsure of potential career routes and also can be influential for those wishing to take up apprenticeships. It is also a great step in to many different areas of study at degree level, there are numerous different types of design degrees from product design, industrial design, design engineering, clothing, furniture to more graphic based routes – the list is vast.

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What type of student is this
course suitable for?

This course is suited to problem solvers, people who see a need and can then work independently to work towards a creating a solution for the problem.

Although a design based subject there are elements of maths and science as part of the core elements of the course.

Design technology complements many other subjects depending on the chosen route beyond sixth form.


It is important to understand the assessment structure of the course. What percent are the units ? Are they internally or externally assessed ? Are they exams or coursework?
Component 1
  • Principles of Design and Technology
  • Exam
Component 2
  • Independent Design and Make Project
  • NEA
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