Harris Academies
All Academies in our Federation aim to transform the lives of the students they serve by bringing about rapid improvement in examination results, personal development and aspiration.

Computer Science

Computer Science

Entry Requirements

An average Attainment 8 score of 5.5 as well as a Grade 5 in English Language or Literature and Grade 6 in Maths. In addition to this a GCSE B Grade in Physics. A GCSE B Grade in ICT or Computer Science is preferred.

What is Computer Science?

The Computer Science course builds on the knowledge, understanding and skills established at Key Stage 4 and encourages you to develop a broad range of the knowledge, understanding and skills of computing, as a basis for progression into further learning and/or employment.

The course will encourage and enable you to have -

  • an understanding of, and the ability to apply, the fundamental principles and concepts of computer science, including abstraction, decomposition, logic, algorithms and data representation
  • the ability to analyse problems in computational terms through practical experience of solving such problems, including writing programs to do so
  • the capacity for thinking creatively, innovatively, analytically, logically and critically
  • the capacity to see relationships between different aspects of Computer Science

Mathematical skills related to:

  • Boolean algebra
  • comparison and complexity of algorithms
  • number representations and bases.
  • the ability to articulate the individual (moral), social (ethical), legal and cultural opportunities and risks of digital technology.

Year 1 Course Content

  • Fundamentals of data structures
  • Systematic approach to problem solving
  • Theory of computation
  • Fundamentals of data representation
  • Fundamentals of computer systems
  • Fundamentals of computer organisation and architecture
  • Consequences of uses of computing
  • Fundamentals of communications and networking

Year 2 Course Content

  • Problem Solving
  • Programming
  • Operating Systems
  • Databases
  • Networking

Jobs within Computer Science may include the following:

  • Database administrator.
  • Games developer.
  • Information systems manager.
  • IT consultant.
  • Multimedia programmer.
  • Network engineer.
  • Systems analyst.
  • Systems developer.

How will you be assessed?

Paper 1

This paper tests your ability to program, as well as your theoretical knowledge of Computer Science.


On-screen exam: 2 hours 30 minutes

40% of A-level


You answer a series of short questions and write/ adapt/extend programs in an electronic answer document provided by the exam board.

Paper 2

This paper tests your ability to answer questions and the theory of Computer Science.


Written exam: 2 hours 30 minutes

40% of A-level


Compulsory short-answer and extended-answer questions.

Non-exam assessment

The non-exam assessment assesses your ability to use the knowledge and skills gained through the course to solve or investigate a practical problem. You will be expected to follow a systematic approach to problem solving.


75 marks

20% of A-level

Exam Board: AQA