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Sixth Form: Computing

Updated: Mon 12 Nov 2018   Share: Share on facebookShare on TwitterShare on MySpaceShare by Email



Subject Leader: Mr A. Mullen

Examination Board: AQA

A-Level Syllabus: 7517


A2 Paper 1: On screen exam 2 hours and 30 minutes (40%)

A2 Paper 2: Written exam 2 hours and 30 minutes (40%)

Non-exam Assessment: 75 Marks (20%)


“A computer would deserve to be called intelligent if it could deceive a human into believing that it was human.”    Alan Turing


What is A-Level Computing?

The Computing specification has been designed for students who wish to go on to Higher Education or into employment where knowledge of Computing would be beneficial.

Computing is not concerned with simply learning how to use applications or programming languages.  Instead, abstract thinking, general problem-solving, algorithmic and mathematical reasoning, scientific and engineering-based thinking are emphasised.

The Visual Basic.NET programming language is taught in lessons and used to answer questions and complete tasks for examinations and coursework.


What makes a good Computer Scientist?

The ability to think in a rational way is a good start.  A computer scientist will approach problems in an organised and methodical way, using their insight and mathematical skills to break the problem down into steps which can be solved or expressed using a computer program.


What can I expect to learn in computing?

A2 Level Topics Unit 1:

1 Fundamentals of programming

2 Fundamentals of data structures

3 Fundamentals of algorithms

4 Theory of computation

A2 Level Topics Unit 2:

5 Fundamentals of data representation

6 Fundamentals of computer systems

7 Fundamentals of computer organisation and architecture

8 Consequences of uses of computing

9 Fundamentals of communication and networking

10 Fundamentals of databases

11 Big Data

12 Fundamentals of functional programming

Non-exam assessment: The non-exam assessment assesses a student's ability to use the knowledge and skills gained through the course to solve a practical problem.


Where could Computing take me?

Computing is a traditional and academically rigorous subject which combines well with Maths and the Sciences.  A-Level Computing students can go on to further studies in Computer Science, Game Design or any number of disciplines where analysis and problem solving are required.