A Level Product Design

Head of Design and Technology: Mrs P Curran
Our fascination with design goes back to flint arrow heads and earthenware pots. As a designer you need creativity and resilience, in order to imagine and realise the shape and function of the object. You will need to understand industrial manufacturing processes, materials and marketing. Design and Technology A Level enables students to participate successfully and with confidence in an increasingly technological world. We want students to explore new ideas of originality and value, to question and challenge old ideas, to consider the environmental, social and moral aspects of life in the 21st Century. We need thinkers and problem solvers, students who can communicate their ideas and look outside of their comfort zone.

Course content
Examination board: AQA

Portfolio of Creative Skills
– Design methods and processes
– Design Theory
– How technology and cultural changes can impact on the work of designers
– Product life cycle
– Design processes
– Critical analysis and evaluation

Technical Principles
– Materials, their properties and applications
– Modern industrial and commercial practice
– Efficient use of materials
– Digital design and manufacture
– Health and Safety
– Enterprise and marketing in the development of products

Iterative Design Process
Students should be aware of, and able to explain and demonstrate the skills, in a range of communication and presentation techniques for conveying proposals and intentions to clients, potential users and manufacturers. In year 13 students will be required to undertake a small-scale design-and-make task and produce a final prototype based on a context and design brief developed by the student.

Designing and Making Principles
Students should be aware of, and able to explain, different approaches to user centred design. That in approaching a design challenge there is not a single process, but that good design always addresses many issues.

We work alongside the Art department to showcase the GCSE and A Level final pieces in our annual Summer Exhibition showcase at the end of the academic year.

University and beyond
Many students who take A Level Design and Technology go on to study Architecture, Design, Product Design, Automotive Design, Engineering, Industrial Product Design at university, and Art Foundation courses. It is a fantastic career for those that enjoy expressing themselves through their hands, and genuinely enjoy solving problems and making the world a better and easier place to live for everyone, with minimal impact on the environment.

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