Computing & ICT

The electronic age relies on Communication, the creation of knowledge and the exchange of information. For young people to be successful and active members of this society, they need to be capable and skilled users of information technology.


The Computing and ICT faculty at Harlington School is committed to offering students a range of experiences that allow the development of skills and competences in the use of computing to enable them to fully utilise the hardware and software; and in using those resources to design systems and solve problems to improve the quality of life for all citizens.
Our main priority is to prepare young people for a world with computing, having an awareness of the legal, ethical, social and moral implications of applying technology.
What is important about Computing is that students understand how to use the technology, but also to be responsible citizens and to design computer systems that will benefit their families and society. Computing will provide students with employment opportunities impacting on their social and cultural lives.
We aim for our students to be life-long learners who are able to take advantage of current and future developments in ICT and want our students to learn skills that improve their access to resources. An essential aspect of computing is reacting to advances in technology and using it to solve problems.
Students are supported throughout their studies, with electronic resources, buddy feedback, through exemplar materials and through the marking and a regular feedback system.
Students’ awareness of further education and employment is developed and supported through industry links and with our Ambassador programme, as former students provide an insight into University and employment with visits and talks.
Awe and Wonder are provided through activities that allow students to explore new technologies and careers in Computing and ICT.

Studying Computing & Information Communication Technology is seen by many to be a necessity, as it equips pupils not only with the skills they need to learn and live in the 21st Century, but also to cope with the rapid rate of change we associate with living in the world today. It also provides them with an opportunity to appreciate the impact that this has had both on society and them as individuals. The need for Computing skills and knowledge is also cross-curricular and developmental and therefore the courses have been designed to build on skills from year to year.

The study of Computing & ICT aims to provide pupils with:

  • An understanding of the need to practice e-safety when using IT resources, particularly online.
  • An understanding of how computers and computer systems work, and how they are constructed and programmed.
  • The skills and understanding to use software effectively to solve problems.
  • The ability to critically evaluate and assimilate the information they encounter, particularly through sources such as the internet.

An appreciation of the role IT plays in the world around them.

The study of ICT, at all levels, encourages learners to develop an appreciation and understanding of the impact that developments in information technology have on themselves, communities worldwide, and the future.

Studying ICT will contribute in a significant way to the general education of pupils, whether or not they intend proceeding to further studies or employment specific to information technology.

Key Stage 3

At Key Stage 3, programmes of study are designed to begin to develop skills in web-design, programming and game design with process, software and controls increasing in difficulty throughout the three year course. Further details of the Key Stage 3 programmes of study can be found in the curriculum booklet. Assessment is by end of module tests and teacher assessment.

Key Stage 4

OCR Level ½ Cambridge National Certificate in Information Technologies (years 9 and 10)

This qualification teaches students what different technologies could be used, why they should use them and how to make best use of them, to gather, store, manipulate and present data; this is known as data management.

Understanding tools, techniques, methods and processes for technological solutionsStudents will be assessed on their knowledge and understanding of different technologies (hardware and software applications), and tools and techniques used to select, store, manipulate and present data and information.
Students will be assessed on each phase of the project life cycle.
They will need to understand the different risks associated with the collection, storage and use of data and how the legal, moral, ethical and security issues can have an impact on organisations and individuals. They also need to understand how such risks can be mitigated.

Developing technological solutions
They will be given a project to develop a technological solution that processes data and communicates information.
They will follow the project life cycle phases of initiation/planning, execution, communication and evaluation, demonstrating the practical skills they have acquired such as carrying out a SWOT analysis, creating GANTT charts, developing online surveys, and/or presenting data through web based technologies; keeping their project on track through on-going, iterative reviews

R012:Examination, written paper – 1 hour 45 mins – 80 marks, worth 50% R013:Controlled assessment – 20 hours – 80 marks, worth 50%

Career Opportunities and Further Education
The skills, knowledge and understanding students will develop through this qualification are very relevant to both work and further study. They will support them in a range of subject areas such as ‘A’ levels in Business or Geography, or Cambridge Technicals in IT. They can also support their progression into employment through Apprenticeships in areas such as Digital Marketer or Business Administrator.

Edexcel: Level 2 Certificate in Digital Applications (CiDA) (Year 11 Only)

The Certificate in Digital Applications is designed to engage and enthuse young people with an interest in creative computing (e.g. creative multimedia, website and computer game development). This qualification will equip them with the knowledge, skills and understanding they need to design and make effective digital products.

It teaches young people how to express their creativity in an informed and responsible way and encourage them to reflect on what they produce and strive for excellence. It gives young people the skills they need to support future learning and to exploit the creative and commercial employment opportunities on offer in the digital world in which they are growing up.


The Certificate in Digital Applications includes an external assessment Unit 1, which comprises 25% of the total assessment and an externally set Task, Unit 3 which comprises 75% of the total for the qualification.

Students must complete both units.

  • Unit 1: Developing Web Products – A two and a half hour practical examination in which candidates are expected to use web authoring and other software tools to build and test a web based product. 25%
  • Unit 3: Artwork and Imaging- Candidates create a solution to a task provided by the exam board. 75%

GCSE Computer Science.

Computing is the study of how computers and computer systems work and how they are constructed and programmed. Programming is a large part of the new GCSE because it is a practical and exciting vehicle to teach the logic and problem solving skills needed by computer scientists.

Course Content

Students will study three units as follows:

Computational thinking, problem solving, code tracing and applied computing as well as theoretical knowledge of computer science.

Theoretical knowledge of computer science.

The non-exam assessment (NEA) assesses a student’s ability to use the knowledge and skills gained through the course to solve a practical programming problem. Students will be expected to follow a systematic approach to problem-solving.


Paper 1: Computational thinking and problem solving – Computational thinking, problem solving, code tracing and applied computing as well as theoretical knowledge of computer science from subject content.

Written exam set in practically based scenarios: 1 hour 30 minutes, 80 marks, 50% of GCSE

A mix of multiple choice, short answer and longer answer questions assessing a student’s practical problem solving and computational thinking skills.

Paper 2: Written assessment – Theoretical knowledge from subject content.

Written exam: 1 hour 30 minutes, 80 marks, 50% of GCSE

A mix of multiple choice, short answer, longer answer and extended response questions assessing a student’s theoretical knowledge.

Key Stage 5

Cambridge Technical Applied General Certificate in IT

The Cambridge Technicals suite has been designed to give you opportunities to demonstrate and develop the practical application of knowledge and understanding in the areas of work that appeal to you. This course will equip students​ with the knowledge, understanding and essential skills used in IT and Cyber Security.
Course Content

Unit 1 – Fundamentals of IT, written paper, 1 hour 30 minutes.

Unit 2 – Global Information, written paper, 1 hour 30 minutes.

Unit 9 – Product Development

Unit 17 – Internet of Everything


Year 12- Examination, written paper – 1 hour 30 mins Unit 1 and 2
Year 13- Examination, written paper – 1 hour 30 mins Unit 3, Coursework Assignment x 2

Career Opportunities and Further Education 

The skills, knowledge and understanding students will develop through this qualification are very relevant to both work and further study. They will support them in a range of subject areas and can also support their progression into employment through Apprenticeships and into University. Data Analyst, Information Systems Manager, Computer Scientist, IT Consultant, Systems Analyst, Software Design, Network Engineer, Network Analyst, Web Content Manager, Cyber security


If you are interested in studying Computer Science A Level or any courses please contact Mr McGovern, Faculty Leader. Email [email protected]