Manor Academy

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KS4 GCSE Computer Science


Weblink to exam specification


This course gives the students pupils the opportunity to discover how computer technology works. It allows them to become computational thinkers, developing skills creating computer programs for complex problems.

Units studied and a brief description of their content

Pupils will work on a four topics which cover a variety of skills and techniques. Throughout the two years pupils will develop an :

  • Understanding of what algorithms are, what they are used for and how they work; ability to interpret, amend and create algorithms.
  • Understanding of binary representation, data representation, data storage and compression, encryption and databases; ability to use SQL to insert, amend and extract data stored in a structured database.
  • Understanding of components of computer systems; ability to construct truth tables, produce logic statements and read and interpret fragments of assembly code.
  • Understanding of computer networks, the internet and the World Wide Web; ability to use HTML and CSS to construct web pages.
  • Awareness of emerging trends in computing technologies, the impact of computing on individuals, society and the environment, including ethical, legal and ownership issues.


Pupils are assessed in the following ways:

Controlled Assessment ? Practical Programming.

The Controlled Assessment is worth 25% of the total grade. Pupils are allowed 15 hours to complete three tasks issued by the Examination Board. The Controlled Assessment will take place in year 11 and it is worth 50 marks. This assessment enables the students to demonstrate their computational techniques using a programming language.

External Assessment ? Principles of Computer Science

This assessment is paper based. Pupils are allowed 120 minutes to complete the paper which consists of 5 questions and carries 90 marks. It is worth 75% of the total grade.