Aims of the course
The WJEC GCSE in Computer Science has been designed to give an understanding of the fundamental concepts of computer science and a broad scope of study opportunities. This specification has been designed to free centres to concentrate on innovative delivery of the course by having a streamlined, uncomplicated, futureproof structure, with realistic technological requirements.
Computers are widely used in all aspects of business, industry, government, education, leisure and the home. In this technological age, a study of computer science, and particularly how computers are used in the solution of a variety of problems, is essential to learners. Computer science integrates well with subjects across the curriculum. It demands both logical discipline and imaginative creativity in the selection and design of algorithms and the writing, testing and debugging of programs.
What will I study? – Course Outline
This specification promotes the integrated study of computer science. It will enable learners to develop a broad range of skills in the areas of programming, system development, computer architecture, data, communication and applications.
How will I be assessed?
Unit 1: Understanding Computer Science (Written examination):—Examination unit which looks at hardware, software and the impact of computing upon society.
Unit 2—Computational Thinking and Programming (on screen exam) –This unit investigates problem solving, algorithms and programming constructs, programming languages, data structures and data types and security and authentication
Unit 3 – Software Development – Non-exam assessment: 20 hours. This unit requires learners to produce a programmed solution to a problem. They must analyse the problem, design a solution to the problem, develop a final programmed solution, test the solution and give suggestions for further development of the solution.
How will I learn? What skills will I acquire?
The WJEC GCSE in Computer Science will require you to:
- understand and apply the fundamental principles and concepts of computer science, including; abstraction, decomposition, logic, algorithms, and data representation
- analyse problems in computational terms through practical experience of solving such problems, including designing, writing and debugging programs to do so
- think creatively, innovatively, analytically, logically and critically
- understand the components that make up digital systems, and how they communicate with one another and with other systems
- understand the impacts of digital technology to the individual and to wider society
- apply mathematical skills relevant to computer science.
Progression following this course. What’s next?
As well as preparing you for studying computing/programming at a higher level, such as AS or A levels;
In addition, the specification provides a coherent, satisfying and worthwhile course of study for pupils who may not want progress to further study in this subject.
Future career opportunities
Due to the nature of the course you will be well prepared to start work in a range of employment areas and would be well equipped to take an Apprenticeship leading to a skilled programming or IT user role. The course extends learners’ horizons beyond the school or college environment in the appreciation of the effects of computer science on society and individuals.