Design Technology

General Information

In Design Technology students are taught how to design, manufacture and evaluate real products that are useful in everyday life.

In Key Stage 3 students enjoy working with a variety of materials such as timber, metals, plastics, electronics, graphic materials and textiles. They also work in the food area and are taught about healthy eating and food preparation. In Key Stage 4 students can opt to take Design Technology which covers Resistant Materials, Electronics and Graphics. Some Gifted and Talented students are ‘fast tracked’ to take their GCSE in Year 10.

Key Stage 3

Key Stage 4

GCSE – Product Design: Examination Board AQA

All students who select this qualification will follow the same programme of learning however, students will be allocated into groups based on the area study that they have opted to produce their practical coursework in. The following options are available:-

Resistant Materials, Electronics, Graphics, Textiles and Food Technology

Students however may wish to combine some elements of their design using more than one material and staff will make every effort to accommodate any such requests. Nevertheless it may not always be possible during allocated lesson time when resources may not be available.


This Product Design course enables students to –

  • demonstrate fully their design and technology capability, which requires them to combine skills with knowledge and understanding in order to design and make quality products in quantity;
  • acquire and apply knowledge, skills and understanding through:
  • analysing and evaluating products and processes;
  • engaging in focused tasks to develop and demonstrate techniques;
  • engaging in strategies for developing ideas, planning and producing products;
  • considering how past and present design and technology, relevant to a designing and making context, affects society;
  • recognising the moral, cultural and environmental issues inherent in design and technology.

Scheme of Assessment

Written Paper 40% of Marks

All questions are compulsory. Questions will test the application of knowledge and understanding of materials, components, processes, techniques, technologies and the evaluation of commercial practices and products. Questions will largely address general aspects of product design which cross all material areas, although some questions will allow subject specific knowledge to be shown.

Foundation 2 hour Examination
Higher 2 hour Examination
Coursework 60% of Marks 40 hours

Summary of Subject Content

There are four broad areas of study:

  • Designing and Making Skills
  • Materials and Components
  • Design and Market Influences
  • Processes and Manufacture

The coursework project will be internally assessed and externally moderated. Students are required to submit a 3-dimensional product* or outcome and a concise design folder and/or the appropriate ICT evidence. Students have the freedom in product design to use the type and variety of materials necessary to satisfy their design brief. Throughout the project students need to address the industrial and commercial practices, and the moral, social, cultural and environmental issues, arising from their work.

Material Requirements

Students opting for Resistant Materials will need to make contribution to materials and components used. Students may need to purchase additional components not readily available in school.

Students opting for Electronics as above

Students opting for Graphics as above

Students opting for Textiles will need to purchase their own fabric and components suitable to meet the needs of their own final design – a letter outlining this in more detail will be given students who select this option.

Please contact your son/daughters teacher for any further questions regarding material requirements including any questions regarding any difficulties you may have.

Additional Support

All students are offered the opportunity to purchase the GCSE Product Design booklets at a discounted price which fully support this course. A folder for coursework is also included in this package. A letter will be sent to you in September in the first year of commencement of the course.

Key Stage 5

A Level Product Design is offered in two areas. These are Resistant Materials and Textiles. The course is well attended and always achieves excellent results. Students will produce two projects and folders through the course with examinations each year of the two year course. The course lends itself to both academic and practical students as there is an equal weighting for the examinations and practical outcomes. The focus of the course is to look at more industrial methods of manufacture and to use these methods where possible in their projects. This course typically leads to Engineering or Design based Degrees, although the many Universities like this course as it demonstrates problem solving abilities.

This course is the culmination of seven years of study at Christ the King Catholic Voluntary Academy and as already stated always achieves an excellent set of results.