Qualification: GCSE Computer Science

Awarding body: OCR

GCSE Computer Science

Awarding body             OCR

Course outline

GCSE Computer Science develops the understanding and application of the fundamental principles and concepts of Computer Science, including abstraction, decomposition, logic, algorithms, and data representation.  It encourages students to analyse problems in computational terms through practical experience of solving such problems, including designing, writing and debugging computer programs. It allows students to think creatively, innovatively, analytically, logically and critically; students will study the components that make up digital systems, and how they communicate with one another and with other systems.  All this is within the context of understanding the impacts of digital technology to the individual and to wider society.

Assessment

Assessment consists of two papers, one focusing on the theory of Computer Science and one with a focus on programming and algorithms. Both papers have identical weighting and mark allocations (50% each towards the final mark).  In the final year, the students complete a compulsory programming project, assigned by OCR, as coursework.

Am I suited to Computer Science?

Students who are successful at Computer Science tend to be very interested in computers and computer technology; they might like to build their own PC, and would enjoy experimenting with programming languages and hardware.  A key element of computer science is the desire to solve problems, which quite often have an element of mathematics or logic.

Where will this take me?

A GCSE in Computer Science is one of the first building blocks to a career in the software or wider IT industries; you could proceed to an A Level in Computer Science or a Level 3 IT or Games Design course.  Well qualified computer programmers are amongst some of the most highly paid professionals in the UK.