Look at your everyday life – everything that you do now, whether you realise it or not, is either controlled by a computer, supervised by a computer, stored by a computer or processed and used by a computer.
A-Level Computer Science is a more technical subject than ICT at A-Level and the course attaches greater significance to computer programming using object oriented languages. The course also provides students with an appreciation of the impact of computer applications upon both society and individuals.
Computer Science demands both logical discipline and imaginative creativity in the selection and design of algorithms and the writing, testing and debugging of programs.
During the course students will develop an understanding of the rules of languages at a simple level and an awareness of the management and organisation of computer systems.
Computer Science at A-Level integrates well with subjects across the curriculum including Arts and Science subjects.
- A minimum of five GCSEs (with two at grade 6, and three at grade 4)
- English at grade 4 and Maths at grade 6.
- Please click here to see grades conversions in line with the new grading system.
What will I study?
- Examination - 80%
- Coursework - 20%
- Programming and System Development (External Examination: 40%, 2 ¾ Hours):
- Data structures
- Logical operations
- Algorithms and programs
- Principles of programming
- Systems analysis
- Software engineering
- Legal, moral and ethical issues
- Computer Architecture, Data, Communication and Applications (External Examination: 40%, 2 ¾ Hours):
- Hardware and communications
- Data transmission
- Data representation and data types
- Organisation and structure of data
- Databases and distributed systems
- The operating system
- Data security and integrity processes
- Programming Project (External moderation, 20%)
- Students select their own user-driven problem which enables them to demonstrate the skills and knowledge necessary to meet the assessment objectives.
- Students need to:
- Analyse the problem
- Design a solution
- Implement and test the solution
- Provide a thorough evaluation.
Where does it lead?
Computer Studies is a useful subject for degrees that focus on programming, systems analysis and software engineering, as well as management and accounting. Some universities also require a good grade in A-Level Mathematics to progress onto a computer science degree course. Around half of our A-Level Computer Science students go on to study degrees in computer science, whilst others choose to follow courses in business. science and technology-related subjects.
“I studied Computer Studies with History and Physics at Cadbury College, achieving AAB. I am now studying a Computer Science degree with a year in industry at Cardiff University.”