A Level: Design and Technology - Product Design

Course title: Advanced GCE in Design and Technology: Product Design

Exam board: AQA

Subject specific entry criteria: Minimum Grade 6/Merit2 in either GCSE Design and Technology/ BTEC Engineering.

Course overview

Year 12 – Examination Technique and Design/Make Tasks

In Year 12 students will cover the content for the externally assessed examinations which will include materials and their properties, techniques and processes and design theory. You will also undertake preparation for the non-examined assessment (NEA) through a series of skills building projects. This will develop independence and problem-solving skills in a wide range of design and manufacturing disciplines.

Year 12/13

In June of Year 12 you will write and begin the contextual challenge for the Non-Examined Assessment (50%) The purpose of the self-directed NEA is to undertake a substantial design, make and evaluate project which will test students’ skills in designing and making a prototype. Students will also continue to cover the theoretical content for the 2 externally assessed examinations (50%).

Assessment overview

Paper 1:

  • Written ExaminationTechnical Principles
  • 2hrs 30mins
  • 120 marks
  • 30% of A level

Paper 2:

  • Written Examination Designing & Making Principles
  • 1hr 30mins
  • 80 marks
  • 20% of A level

Non-Examined Assessment (NEA)

  • Substantial Design and Make project
  • 100 marks
  • 50% of the qualification
  • Evidence: Written or digital design portfolio and photographic evidence of final prototype.
Future progression

Students will investigate historical, social, cultural, environmental and economic influences on design and technology, whilst enjoying opportunities to put their learning into practice by producing prototypes of their choice- developing problem solving skills that support many further choices. This creative and thought-provoking qualification gives students the practical skills, theoretical knowledge and confidence to succeed in a number of careers; especially those in the creative industries. Students can progress from this qualification to tertiary education and/or work-based studies in areas not limited to, and including, product design, engineering, furniture design, interior design and architecture.

Potential careers

A number of Engineering disciplines – in particular Aerospace, Automotive, Civil and Structural Engineering

  • Architecture and Interior Architecture
  • Product, lighting and Furniture Design
  • Construction and Quantity Surveying
  • Graphic Design, Photography and Marketing
  • Animation and Games Design
  • Film/Television Production Design and Set Design
How to succeed in Design and Technology - Product Design

You will:

  • have an ability to research and develop a project independently and thoroughly
  • be innovative and at the forefront of changes in design and technology
  • be able to use a range of tools, materials and equipment to develop a prototype
  • have a passion for design, making and engineering
  • be fervent about manufacturing techniques and the industry
  • demonstrate excellent organisation and written/oral communication skills.