Head of Department - Mr Bonser
Stephen Bonser2 James Poote2 Sam Catling2 Chloe Hankin2

Mr Bonser
Head of Department

Mr Poote
Lead Teacher

Mrs Catling

Mrs Hankin

Design and Technology

In Design and Technology students combine practical and technological skills with creative thinking to design and make products and systems that meet human needs. They learn to use current technologies and consider the impact of future technological developments. They learn to think creatively and intervene to improve the quality of life, solving problems as individuals and as members of a team.
Working in stimulating contexts that provide a range of opportunities and draw on the local ethos, community and wider world, students identify needs and opportunities. 

They respond with ideas, products and systems, challenging expectations where appropriate. They combine practical and intellectual skills with an understanding of aesthetic, technical, cultural, health, social, emotional, economic, industrial and environmental issues. As they do so, they evaluate past and present design and technology and its uses and effects. Through design and technology students develop confidence in using practical skills and become discriminating users of products. They apply their creative thinking and learn to innovate.

Key Stage 3

  • During Key Stage 3 students will use a wide range of materials to design and make products. 

Students -

  • work out their ideas with some precision, taking into account how products will be used, who will use them, how much they cost and their appearance.
  • develop their understanding of designing and making by investigating products and finding out about the work of professional designers and manufacturing industry.
  • use computers including computer-aided design and manufacture (CAD-CAM) and control software, as an integral part of designing and making.
  • draw on knowledge and understanding from other areas of the curriculum.

Key Stage 4

  • Key Stage 4 courses allow students to take part in design and make projects that are linked to their own interests, industrial practice and the community.
  • Projects may involve an enterprise activity, where students identify an opportunity, design to meet a need, manufacture products and evaluate the whole design and make process.
  • Students use ICT to help with their work, including computer aided design and manufacture (CAD/CAM) software, control panels and ICT-based sources for research.
  • They consider how technology affects society and their own lives, and learn that new technologies have both advantages and disadvantages.

Key Stage 5

  • The A Level Product Design course encourages students to take a broad view of technology and design to develop their capacity to design and make products and to appreciate the complex relations between design, materials, manufacture and marketing.
  • It offers students an opportunity to communicate their thinking clearly and represent their ideas graphically as well as gain personal satisfaction and a positive experience from working with a variety of materials.
  • The practical problem solving processes in this course will encourage independent learning, creativity and innovation.

KS4 Catering & Hospitality: A course in Catering offers a unique opportunity in the curriculum for students to develop their knowledge and extend their making skills in a vocational context. This course has a practical based focus, and helps guide students through the preparation of support folios, time control and the annotation of coursework.

KS4 Product Design: Several coursework challenges will be set during Year 10 where students are able to experiment with materials and processes as well as develop skills. In Year 11 students are able to take responsibility for helping to choose the focus for their final assessment project which consists of a design folder and a practical project.

The Design and Technology Department is located in a series of specialist rooms and consist of:

  • Two rooms equipped to teach Product Design, a workshop based course using wood, metal and plastic and modelling materials.
  • A System and Control Technology room equipped for electronics, mechanisms and structures.
  • A Catering room with purpose built food preparation areas and range style cookers.

All of the DT rooms have PC resources linked to the school network and a department printer. Computer Aided Design software ‘Sketchup’ and ‘2D Design’ is used with the Laser Cutter and 3D Printer manufacturing equipment in order to introduce and develop CAD/CAM across the department.

Time Allocation

Key Stage 3
Two – one hour lessons are allocated for Key Stage 3, with the year groups divided into two allowing all students’ access to the Design Technology Curriculum.
Key Stage 4
Two hours for Year 10 and Year 11 have been allocated each week for the delivery of the course.
Key Stage 5
Sixth Form courses operate with five – one hour lessons with the expectation of at least one double session for practical work.


GCSE Hospitality & Catering:
The KS4 course has a strong practical element during Years 9 & 10 where students have the opportunity to experience a real work environment by catering for public events within school.
Students get the opportunity to prepare and serve dishes from all aspects of dietary needs addressing vegetarian, religious health and social needs of potential customers.
Year 11 Coursework requirement: There is a nine hours controlled assessment which, challenges students’ practical skills and knowledge of the catering industry.
Students will need to produce a two course meal which links to the needs and criteria of the awarding body brief. The assessment is in two parts, four hours of research and planning and five-hours practical where students need to demonstrate three preparations and three making skills.
Examination requirement: there is a 1 hour 15 min written exam at the end of the course in Year 11 which accounts for 60% of the GCSE grade.

GCSE Product Design:
Coursework Requirement: up to three coursework challenges will be undertaken in Year 10 and one in Year 11.
Examination Requirement: there is a 2 hour written examination at the end of the course in Year 11 which accounts for 50% of the GCSE grade.
Non Exam Assessment (NEA): in Year 11 the final project of 30 hours duration accounts for 50% of the course.

Skills Developed
 (higher education or career prospects)

Catering & Hospitality:
Practical Skills: the development of practical capability using ingredients to make products.
Study Skills: students must clearly demonstrate the important skills of:

  • Research and analysis of existing products
  • Development of design ideas
  • Planning the making process
  • Testing and evaluation

Product Design:
Practical Skills: the development of practical capabilities using materials including paper and card, modelling Styrofoam as well as wood metal and plastics to make products.
Study Skills: students must clearly demonstrate the important skills of:

  • Research and analysis of existing products
  • Development of design ideas
  • Planning the making process
  • Testing and evaluation


Extra-Curricular Activities:
Sixth Form and Year 11 are able to work on examination coursework during lunchtimes and after school with their teachers as a priority.
Individual students from all Year groups are able to use the workshop resources to work on coursework products as agreed with teaching staff.
Sixth Form visit the 100% Design Exhibition.
Teams of students from Years 8, 9 and 10 as well as Sixth Form students represent the school in the annual Rotary Club Design and Technology Aylesbury Vale schools Challenge.
Bucks ‘Young Chef’ of the Year competition.

Books or Equipment recommended/required:

Catering & Hospitality: students will need to provide or fund materials throughout the course - £18 per half term.

Product Design: students will need to provide or fund materials throughout the course.
A CGP revision guide is recommended.
Product Design ISBN 9781782947523