Design Technology

Design and Technology is an inspiring, rigorous and practical subject. Using creativity and imagination, pupils design and make products that solve real and relevant problems within a variety of contexts, considering their own and others’ needs, wants and values’.

2014 Design & Technology Programme of Study

Powerful knowledge

Pupils will develop the creative, technical and practical expertise needed to perform everyday tasks confidently and to participate successfully in an increasingly technological world.

  • Pupils will build and apply a repertoire of knowledge, understanding and skills in order to design and make high quality prototypes and products for a wide range of users.
  • Pupils will critique, evaluate and test their ideas and products and the work of others.
  • Pupils will understand and apply the principles of nutrition and learn how to cook.
  • Pupils will develop a critical understanding technology's impact on daily life and the wider world through the evaluation of past and present design and technology.
  • Pupils will learn how to take risks, becoming resourceful, innovative, enterprising and capable citizens.
  • Pupils will acquire a broad range of subject knowledge and draw on disciplines such as maths, science, engineering and art.

Curriculum intent:

Central to the teaching of Design and Technology are the following aims:

  • To enable students to combine their designing and making skills with knowledge and understanding, in order to design and make quality products.
  • To encourage students to consider the effects and implications of technological activity.
  • To give students the opportunity to apply skills, knowledge and understanding from other subjects, where appropriate, including art, information technology, mathematics and science.
  • To provide students with opportunities to work both individually and as members of a team.
  • To develop design and technology capability in students through activities which involve a range of contexts, materials and processes and lead to practical outcomes.
  • To give students opportunities to develop practical abilities and a confidence to design, make and modify products and systems for identified purposes, selecting and using material resources effectively.
  • To encourage students critical and aesthetic abilities, enabling them to evaluate design and technology activity, including their own, in the context of an identified need.
  • To be self-motivated and self-critical with the ability to solve problems, make judgments and take appropriate actions within identified constraints.
  • To understand and appreciate the needs and beliefs of other people and cultures.
  • To acquire a working vocabulary and body of knowledge relevant to the subject.
  • To work safely, hygienically and economically.


Across the key stage focused practical tasks are planned in order to develop & practise a broad range of foundation skills & knowledge (FPT). Pupils are then given opportunities to develop their design & technology capability, applying their knowledge and skills, through assignments in which they design & make products focusing on different contexts and materials (DMA). At Key Stage 3 a collaborative approach with Product Design, Food and Textiles is adopted in order to provide a broad and balanced curriculum with all students having access to all areas and a range of resistant and compliant materials.

In order to achieve a broad range of experiences using a range of different materials across the key stage, pupils are taught by specialist teachers following a rotational system approximately every 9 weeks. Pupils spend 2 hours per fortnight, with 3 hours for year 8, as a block in D&T. A double lesson per fortnight  in year 8 and 9 facilitates the teaching and learning of increasingly more complex skills in practical work, allowing pupils to become more independent and organised in the development of their practical capability.

Across each key stage students are required to use ICT where relevant and practical, most especially in design make assignments.


At Key Stage 4 pupils have the opportunity to study one Design & Technology subject in greater depth by specialising in one of the following AQA specifications:

  • GCSE Food Preparation & Nutrition
  • GCSE Design & Technology: Product Design
  • GCSE Textiles

GCSE Food Preparation & Nutrition

This specification enables students to:

  • Demonstrate effective and safe cooking skills by planning, preparing and cooking using a variety of food commodities, cooking techniques and equipment.
  • Develop knowledge and understanding of the functional properties and chemical processes as well as the nutritional content of food and drinks.
  • Understand the relationship between diet, nutrition and health, including the physiological and psychological effects of poor diet and health.
  • Understand the economic, environmental, ethical and social-cultural influences on food availability, production processes and diet and health choices.
  • Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of functional and nutritional properties, sensory qualities and microbiological food safety considerations when preparing, processing, storing, cooking and serving food.
  • Understand and explore a range of ingredients and processes from different culinary traditions (including Britain and international), to inspire new ideas or modify existing recipes.

GCSE Textiles

This specification enables students to:

  • Actively engage in the creative process of art, craft and design in order to develop as effective and independent learners, and as critical and reflective thinkers with enquiring minds.
  • Develop creative, imaginative and intuitive capabilities when exploring and making images, artefacts and products.
  • Become confident in taking risks and learn from experience when exploring and experimenting with ideas, processes, media, materials and techniques.
  • Develop critical understanding through investigative, analytical, experimental, practical, technical and expressive skills.
  • Develop and refine ideas and proposals, personal outcomes or solutions with increasing independence.
  • Acquire and develop technical skills through working with a broad range of media, materials, techniques, processes and technologies with purpose and intent.
  • Develop knowledge and understanding of art, craft and design in historical and contemporary contexts, societies and cultures.
  • Develop an awareness of the different roles and individual work practices evident in the production of art, craft and design in the creative and cultural industries.
  • Develop an awareness of the purposes, intentions and functions of art, craft and design in a variety of contexts and as appropriate to students’ own work.
  • Demonstrate safe working practices in art, craft and design.

 GCSE Product Design

Enables students to:

  • Demonstrate their understanding that all design and technological activity takes place within contexts that influence the outcomes of design practice.
  • Develop realistic design proposals as a result of exploration of design opportunities and user’s needs, wants and values.
  • Use imagination, experimentation and combine ideas whilst design and making.
  • Communicate their design ideas and decisions using different media and techniques, as appropriate for different audiences at key points in their designing.
  • Develop decision making skills, including the planning and organisation of time and resources when managing their own project work.
  • Develop a broad knowledge of materials, components and technologies and practical skills to develop high quality, imaginative and functional prototypes.
  • Be ambitious and open to explore and take design risks in order to stretch the development of design proposals, avoiding clichéd or stereotypical responses.
  • Consider the cost, commercial viability and marketing of products.
  • Demonstrate safe working practices in design and technology.
  • Use key design and technology terminology including those related to: designing, innovation and communication; materials and technologies; making, manufacture and production; critiquing, values and ethics.

Pupils have 6 hours over the two week timetable in Design & Technology, which is divided into 1 hour sessions.

Curriculum enrichment

Pupils are encouraged to spend additional out of lesson hours working within the department in order to support their lesson studies. Additional after hours clubs are put on in order to support GCSE students completing their Non Exam Assessment. The department has an open door policy for all pupils in order to facilitate completion of practical work