Computing Science – Higher
Administration and IT
At this level, learners will be introduced to an advanced range of computational processes and thinking, and learn to apply a rigorous approach to the design and development process across a variety of contemporary contexts. Learners will also gain an awareness of the importance that computing professionals play in meeting the needs of society today and for the future, in fields which include science, education, business and industry
Aims of the Course
- develop and apply aspects of computational thinking in a range of contemporary contexts
- extend and apply knowledge and understanding of advanced concepts and processes in computing science
- apply skills and knowledge in analysis, design, implementation and evaluation to a range of digital solutions with some complex aspects
- communicate advanced computing concepts and explain computational behaviour clearly and concisely, using appropriate terminology
- develop awareness of current trends in computing technologies and their impact in transforming and influencing our environment and society
The course consists of two mandatory Units:
- Software Design and Development – The general aim of this Unit is to develop knowledge and understanding of advanced concepts and practical problem-solving skills in software design and development through appropriate software development environments. Learners will develop programming and computational thinking skills by designing, implementing, testing and evaluating practical solutions and explaining how these programs work. They will also develop an understanding of computer architecture and the concepts that underpin how programs work. Through investigative work, learners will gain an awareness of the impact of contemporary computing technologies.
- Information System Design and Development – The general aim of this Unit is to develop knowledge and understanding of advanced concepts and practical problem-solving skills in information system design and development through a range of practical and investigative tasks. Learners will apply their computational thinking skills to implement practical solutions using a range of development tools and to develop an understanding the technical, legal, environmental, economic and social issues related to one or more information systems.
A broad overview of the mandatory subject skills, knowledge and understanding that will be assessed in the Course is given in this section.
- applying computational thinking to understand problems across a range of contexts
- analysing problems with some complex aspects within computing science across a range of contemporary contexts
- designing, implementing, testing and evaluating digital solutions (including computer programs) to problems with some complex aspects across a range of contemporary contexts
- developing skills in computer programming and the ability to communicate how a program works by being able to read and interpret code
- communicating understanding of advanced concepts related to software design and development and information system design and development, clearly and concisely, using appropriate terminology investigating and evaluating the legal, environmental, economic, and social impact of contemporary computing technologies
- applying computing science concepts and techniques to create solutions across a range of contexts
A wide range of learning and teaching approaches are used in the department. These include whole class teaching, group discussion activities, paired work and individual work. Pupils will spend a large proportion of time using a range of software applications.
This course will be assessed trough a combination of an assignment and a question paper. The purpose of the assignment is to assess practical application of knowledge and skills from the Units to develop a solution to an appropriately challenging computing science problem. It will assess pupils’ skills in analysing a problem, designing a solution to the problem, implementing a solution to the problem, and testing and reporting on that solution. The question paper will have 60% of the total mark and the assignment will have 40% of the total mark.
Pupils will be expected to complete regular homework exercises which will reinforce class learning. Pupils will also be encouraged to practise the skills that they have developed.
How Can You Help?
Doing the following will help your child to become more skilled in Computing Science:
- Download and install Python (freely available) onto your home computer.
- Encourage your child to practise the skills learned in class.
- Encourage your child to develop problem solving skills using internet research to find appropriate information.
- Encourage your child to learn about new computing science developments.