The facilities of the Design Department are available to pupils for use in their free time throughout the week and during Saturday activities.
All pupils complete three projects during the year, gaining experience in the use of computer-aided design and manufacture, workshop theory and practice, and basic design skill. For their first project, for example, pupils look to the Bauhaus school of design in order to explore the beginnings of modernism. They acquire the basic workshop skills and safety training, then create a Bauhaus-inspired desk organiser.
Pupils follow the Cambridge Assessment International Education IGCSE Design and Technology (0979) specification. Pupils will learn and demonstrate a number of practical making skills alongside the development of design capability and problem solving skills. The course assessment provides pupils with the opportunity to accrue marks for their design skills in response to a given ‘real life’ context, to demonstrate their understanding of the properties of a wide range of materials used in product manufacture, and to choose a specific area of focus in their project work which will constitute half of their overall mark for the course. The coursework component allows pupils to work with different media, materials and tools to produce a made product, and explore both traditional methods of designing and making (using sketching and workshop tools and equipment), and also Computer Aided Design (CAD) and Manufacture.
Pupils also follow the Cambridge Assessment International Education IGCSE Design and Technology (0979) specification, following the same route as their peers in the Two Year GCSE Course in a condensed timeframe. In order to prepare for this pupils are encouraged to keep a scrapbook of any images or articles that are of interest and connect to the course content.