The Wavell School

The Wavell School Specialist Technology College

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Year 10 Computer Science


GCSE in Computer Science

SUMMARY OF SUBJECT CONTENT:

The GCSE in Computer Science is engaging and practical, encouraging creativity and problem solving. It encourages students to develop their understanding and application of the core concepts in computer science. Students will cover a range of different topics from understanding the CPU, memory and storage, data representation and understanding key computational thinking concepts.  The course is made up two equally waited examinations which make up 100% of their overall mark. In addition students will undertake a programming project that will be carried out throughout the two years. 

Specification at a glance

Exam Board: OCR 

Specification Code: J277

 UNITS

 %

 TIME

 WHEN

 NOTES

 

Unit 1: Computer Systems

 

50%

 

1 hour 30 minutes

 

 

 

Summer Term Year 11

 

 

This Unit is externally assessed by means of a written exam in June.

 

Unit 2: Computational thinking, algorithms and

programming

 

 

50%

 

1 hour 30 minutes

 

 

 

 

Summer Term Year 11

 

 

This Unit is externally assessed by means of a written exam in June.

 

Practical Programming

 

0%

 

Across year 10 and Year 11

Required, not formal assessment but feeds into the unit 2 examination.

What will my child study during Year 10?

Term 1

  • Computer architecture - The function of the CPU and how it fetches and executes data
  • Memory and Storage - The different types of storage, their characteristics and advantages and disadvantages
  • Data representation – How data such as text, sound and images are represented using binary and hexadecimal.

 

Term 2

  • Logic Gates - How logic gates work to make logical decision. Including truth tables.
  • Systems Software - The different types of software and their purpose
  • Computer Networks - The different types of networks, how they connect and the protocols that they use to communicate.

 

Term 3

  • Network Security – Different types of security threats and how computers can be protected.
  • Impacts of technology - The cultural, environmental, and social impact of digital technology.
  • Revision over previous topics

 

Throughout the year students will also take part in Python programming, where they will work towards the fundamental programming skills that will support their knowledge in the final exam. Students will learn  the three main programming constructs, sequence, selection and iteration and solve a range of different programming challenges.

How will my child be assessed and how will I know how well they are doing in Computing in Year 10?

At the end of each topic students will complete an end of topic assessment that will include past questions from GCSE Computer Science Exams. These assessments will be assessed by the teacher. Students will then have a dedicated lesson to respond to the feedback and make further improvements to their answers.

Each student will have access to their own tracking sheet where they can monitor their performance and confidence in each of the topics. In addition, through Microsoft teams and OneNote class notebook students will be able to read their feedback and monitor their progress.

At the end of the year students will complete a mock assessment which will cover content from the entire year including some questions around what they have been doing in their programming lessons.

Students will also complete a range of different programming challenges in lesson to assess their understanding and implementation of python.

What homework will my child be expected to do in Year 10 in Computing?

Students will get homework every week, to help develop their subject knowledge on the topics that are covered that week. Students are also encouraged to do additional python programming at home to help with their understanding and problem-solving skills. Majority of homework will be set online using the same resources that we use in lessons. Students will be issued with their own copy of the exam practice workbook, which they will use periodically.

How can I support my child to do well in Computing during Year 10?

Encourage students to attend after school sessions

Encourage students to practice their Python Programming at home

Encourage students to make effective use of the eRevision website and GCSE Pod, along with past papers and exam board mark schemes, to help them prepare for the written exam.

Encourage students to keep up to date with current developments in technology for example following news reports on the BBC, following reports on cyber security attacks etc.

My child is struggling during the course, what additional help is available to help them keep up?

All students have the option to arrange a catch-up session if they feel they need the additional support. In addition, a range of different online resources can be accessed from school and home, where students can practice their python skills as well as the theory content.