What is Information & Communication Technology?


• It’s about the history of computing
• It’s all about programming
• It’s only for techies
• It’s an easy/slacker’s course


• It’s about real life issues
• It gives you skills for just about any job
• It’s hands-on experience of ICT
• It will improve your prospects for any degree, especially an ICT related one.

We encourage our pupils to become effective and discerning users of ICT and help them to develop a broad range of skills, knowledge and understanding.

Lower School

Pupils in Year 7 and 8 follow a foundation course aimed at enabling them to make informed and intelligent use of the ICT facilities in the school. This course covers an introduction to all the major applications the pupils are likely to require in their schoolwork.

Pupils will study the major office applications, being encouraged to organise their work effectively and apply their knowledge and new-found skills gained in the classroom to their use by people outside of school. All software packages that are used at St. Mary’s College are backed up by video tutorials that we have created to allow all pupils to explore each piece of software at their own pace.

In addition to business-related software, pupils will also engage with creative applications allowing them the opportunity to further develop a link between the intended audience and the purpose of their work. Pupils study topics such as photo editing, web graphics, website development, audio and video and creation of their own computer games using the popular Serif suite of applications and other software to create original pieces of work.

Internet use figures highly in the pupils’ work in many subjects, so the College has invested in powerful filtering software to allow pupils to surf in safety. Other aspects of the foundation course include developing problem-solving techniques. Much of the work covered is task-based, and pupils are required to document all their pieces of work thoroughly. This approach prepares the pupils for the coursework requirements they will meet at GCSE and A Level.


Cambridge IGCSE in Information and Communication Technology

Starting in Year 9 pupils will build upon their studies in Lower School working toward an internationally recognised qualification in ICT.  The courses pupil will study have been specifically chosen to engage, challenge and inspire pupils across a range of interest and ability levels.

Why Cambridge IGCSE?

Cambridge IGCSE in Information and Communication Technology encourages learners to develop lifelong skills, including:

  • Understanding and using applications
  • Using Information and Communication Technology (ICT) to solve problems
  • Analysing, designing, implementing, testing and evaluating ICT systems, ensuring that they are fit for purpose
  • Understanding the implications of technology in society, including social, economic and ethical uses
  • Awareness of the ways ICT can help in home, learning and work environments.
A Level

In the Sixth Form, pupils will have the option to study A Level ICT, building on their study of ICT in Middle School. The A Level course offers a mix of theory and practical assessment considering areas such as presenting information in different forms, the way in which data is used, the impact of ICT on society and an in-depth study of the creation, use and management of relational database systems. Information Technology encompasses a wide variety of skills, preparing pupils for work in any industry. This modern, exciting course aims to improve a young person’s knowledge of computers and how to use them confidently. They will develop advanced skills in web design, database, spreadsheets, video editing, and animation.

Pupils will gain increasing confidence in using a wide variety of industry-standard software packages, enabling them to effectively communicate ideas and information through the use of a wide range of electronic media.