Our Design and Technology department aims to provide a stimulating environment where pupils have the opportunity to work in a safe, creative and innovative manner. The department has dedicated workshops for Resistant Materials, Graphic Design and we are in the process of expanding our department to include a fully equipped specialist kitchen for Food Preparation and Nutrition. We strive to provide an inspiring learning space that encourages our pupils to fulfil their potential through technical and enjoyable design and make tasks.


Key Stage 3

In lower school, pupils will complete a range of activities in Resistant Materials and Graphic Design. Whilst in the workshop, pupils will work with wood, metal and plastic which will allow them to gain a secure knowledge and understanding of relevant techniques and skills required.

Computer Aided Design and Computer Aided Manufacture (CADCAM) is an integral part of our Design and Technology curriculum. This is evident throughout our planned KS3 projects and allows our pupils to interact with how 2D and 3D CAD drawings can be made into real-life products.

As an added subject area, Year 7 will also complete a unit of work in Food Preparation and Nutrition.


Key Stage 4

This subject is ideal for those people who enjoy designing and making and is a very suitable choice for any candidate who is considering a career in areas such as: engineering, product design, theatre and set design, industrial design, manufacturing, architecture, graphic design, packaging and advertising.

The subject is concerned with giving pupils the opportunity to gain experience in identifying, considering and solving problems through the manipulation of resistant materials. The examination syllabus has two major parts:

  1. Coursework = 60%

This will consist of one major project where the candidate will be expected to design and make a quality product from resistant materials.   A candidate’s coursework submission must take the form of a design folder and the realisation of a working product.

The syllabus will assess the candidate’s ability through coursework to: -

  • Identify a need or opportunity that leads to a design brief;
  • Conduct research into the design brief which results in a specification;
  • Generate possible design ideas for a solution to the brief;
  • Develop a product from these ideas for manufacture;
  • Produce plans for and manufacture the product;
  • Test and evaluate the finished product.


  1. Examination = 40%

It will consist of one written paper which will test the candidate’s knowledge and understanding of Resistant Materials Technology through questions on designing and making.

As far as possible the exam elements are taught through workshop mini- project experiences.

Activities undertaken in Year 9 are a good foundation for GCSE work. Pupils who have shown ability in Year 9 will be welcome to sit Design & Technology at GCSE.


AS/A Level

Top of Form


Design and Technology is a very popular subject with many St Mary's pupils. It offers the opportunity for students to be creative and imaginative with their design work and involves work of a practical nature, manufacturing a variety of products in the workshop.

Students become familiar with a wide range of resistant materials including different woods, metals and plastics.

At AS level students acquire a body of knowledge and practical skills that cover all the areas needed to design and make useful and attractive products. The AS course comprises of two units of assessment; It may be awarded as a discrete qualification, or it may be the first half of the full A' level.

‘A' level Design and Technology is a suitable progression for those students who have studied the subject at GCSE. However, it is open to all students as the AS course in itself acts as a foundation for study at A2 level.


Unit 1 AS - 60%    A2 - 30%

Portfolio of Creative Skills

In this unit students are given the opportunity to develop their creative, technical and practical skills through a series of product investigation, design and manufacturing activities.

  • Product Investigation - Students analyse an existing commercial product using their knowledge and understanding of designing and making.
  • Product Design - Students respond creatively to a design brief to produce a range of initial ideas, which are developed to a final design.
  • Product Manufacture - In this section students use their production and planning skills to manufacture a complete product from resistant materials.

Unit 2 AS - 40%    A2 - 20%

Design and Technology in Practice

In this unit students will develop a knowledge and understanding of a wide range of materials and processes used in the field of Design & Technology. Assessment in this unit is through a 1 hour 30 minutes examination paper, set and marked by the Board.



Unit 3 - 40%

Designing for the Future

In this unit students will develop their knowledge and understanding of a range of modern design and manufacturing practices and contemporary design issues.

The assessment of this unit is through a 2 hour examination paper set and marked by Edexcel.


Unit 4 - 60%

Commercial Design

In this unit, students are given the opportunity to apply the skills they have acquired and developed to design and make a product of their own choice that complies with the requirements of a resistant materials technology product. Students are encouraged to be creative and adventurous in their work, producing an outcome which is manufactured to a high standard. The choice of product to be designed should have a real commercial use and a client or user group defined as a third party. A key feature of this unit is for students to consider issues related to sustainability and the impact their product will have on the environment.