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Samuel Whitbread Academy

Computer Science & IT

Curriculum Intent


BTEC Digital IT helps learners acquire technical knowledge and technical skills by studying how organisations collect and use data to make decisions including data manipulation and presentation such that business may draw conclusions and make recommendations on data intelligence.

You will explore user interface design and development principles necessary for technology to meet user needs, you will also explore how modern information technology is evolving.

You will develop your understanding of processes that underpin effective ways of working in digital information technology, such as project planning, the iterative design process, an understanding of what cyber security is and how to safeguard against it, virtual teams, legal and ethical considerations and data protection.

Throughout students develop knowledge and understanding through applying their learning to vocational work-related contexts, and gain the skills they need for further study and employment.


KS4 – Computer Science

GCSE Computer Science helps you think about how technology is created. It allows you to understand how people work together with computers to develop world changing programmes like Facebook, Spotify and eBay.  Importantly, you will develop the logical reasoning and problem solving skills that will prove valuable for the rest of your life.

The course focuses on two areas - Computational thinking: this is the process of thinking through a complex problem, taking the time to understand what the problem is and then develop potential solutions for evaluation; and theoretical content: here you will understand the fundamentals of data representation and computer networks, cyber security and ethical, legal and environmental impacts of digital technology.

Through real world problems you will understand how to design, build and test software which works effectively.


KS5 – Computer Science

Computer Science A level enables learners to develop an understanding of and an ability to apply the fundamental principles and concepts of computer science, including: abstraction, decomposition, and logic, algorithms and data representation. This is also a practical subject where students can apply the academic principles learned in the classroom to real-world systems. It’s an intensely creative subject that combines invention and excitement, enabling students to look at the natural world through a digital prism. You will learn how to analyse problems in computational terms through practical experience of solving problems, including writing programs to do so; the capacity to think creatively, innovatively, analytically, logically and critically; and the capacity to see relationships between the different aspects of computer science.  You will explore the moral, ethical, legal and cultural opportunities and the risks of digital technology.

The Course includes an application development project which develops stills that have a particular relevance to further education and the workplace. Students learn how to analyse a problem, design a solution, develop and evaluate the solution. Each learner is able to tailor their project to fit their individual needs, choices and aspirations.


KS5 – BTEC IT National Extended Certificate

This course helps learners explore relationships between IT systems hardware and software, the way systems work individually and together, the relationship between the user and the system and the impact technology has on organisations and individuals. You will develop practical database skills which teaches you how to create system to manage and share Information, a comprehensive understanding of using and implementing Social Media in Business.  You also study how organisations collect and use data to make decisions, data manipulation and modelling such that business may draw conclusions and make recommendations on data intelligence.

This course is also designed to develop learner’s employability skills across the three main areas of Problem-solving skills: such as the use of critical thinking, applying expert and creative solutions to non-routine problems; Intrapersonal skills: such as communicating, working collaboratively, negotiating and influencing skills; and Interpersonal skills: including self-management, adaptability and resilience, self-monitoring and development.

This will allow progression to a variety of degrees when combined with other suitable Level 3 qualifications but also enables learners to develop knowledge and skills needed for entry-level roles related to IT, including vocational apprenticeship roles and trainee/entry-level roles such as a social media specialist, web/content developer, or business analyst. This qualification carries UCAS points.


Year 9 - Computer Science Curriculum Presentation


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Year 9 - BTEC L2 ICT Curriculum Presentation


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Curriculum Sequences


Subject Learning Checklist


Revision resources


  • Revise BTEC National Information Technology Revision Guide ISBN 9781292299099
  • Revise BTEC National Information Technology Revision Workbook ISBN 9781292299105
  • Course Book: BTEC National Information Technology: Student Book (with ActiveBook), ISBN: 9781292140414


Computer Science AQA GCSE &  OCR A level 


Specification and past papers


Careers Opportunities