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Curriculum Road Map: Computing & Business
Curriculum Statement: Computing & Business

Scope

At Key Stage 3 and Key Stage both Computing & Digital Skills along with Business Studies follow the National Curriculum. At Key Stage 3 the National Centre for Computing Education’s (NCCE) curriculum for Computing and Digital Studies is followed; this allows for the use of all the excellent resources that are provided by the NCCE. At KS4 the Oxford, Cambridge and RSA examination board’s program of study is followed for all the faculty’s subjects and their suggested schemes of work are used and where appropriate adapted to the college’s particular requirements. 

Currently there are two classes per year group in KS4 across Computing and Business Studies with 15-20 pupils in each. The number of students choosing these subjects has been rising steadily over the last three years manifesting the popularity of these subjects. To accommodate the rising student numbers the staffing of this faculty has been increased this year. 

The Computing & Digital skills curriculum equips students with the digital, computing, communication, problem solving skills required for the modern world and that are transferable across the whole school to all areas of studies. Life skills such as communication, teamwork, and resilience are fostered within the faculty. 

Students from all key cohorts (SEND, PP, Boys, Girls …) have performed in line or above the national average. Students have progressed, after studying these subjects, on to computing and engineering related courses and apprenticeships at GCHQ. 

Coherence

The digital literacy, binary logic, network study and software development of these courses all combine to make the curriculum bigger than the sum of its parts. The curriculum is designed to be in manageable discrete units that are built upon throughout KS3 by revisiting areas with increasing depth and complexity. In KS4 both Computing and Business studies are modular courses and are delivered indiscrete year 1 and year 2 parts of the course. Each of the topics at GCSE last six weeks. Digital tools are employed to enhance the recall process throughout the learning cycle providing opportunities for interleaving, gap filling and through low stake diagnostic multiple choice quizzes misconceptions to be identified and addressed in a timely fashion. There is a logical flow in both business studies and in computing that has allowed the faculty to design the curriculum to have a natural progression.

Sequencing

These courses are delivered in a modular format; the modules are assessed on an individual basis. Progression through KS3 and KS4 is designed around ensuing modules being of a greater depth and complexity than the preceding ones. Students have access to the whole course material to facilitate any independent study they may require either to consolidate or advance their learning or to catch-up any missed work. The big picture of course and the position of the modules with in it is shared with the students at the start of the work and throughout KS3 and KS4 

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Rigour

By following the examination boards’ specifications and schemes of work the department ensures that the structures and systems employed by the department are capable of providing excellence in both substantive and disciplinary knowledge. Opportunities for substantive and disciplinary knowledge appear at all stages of the course and these visited by following the examination boards’ specifications and schemes of work. 

One piece of summative assessment work is produced every half-term and the data is collated. Students record their work extensively on the digital platform Showbie although Business Studies students use a mixture of exercise books and Showbie. All work is expected to conform to the UCS Bolton school wide policies and expectations. 

Memory

All topics taught at KS3 are revisited with increasing degrees of complexity and more extensive knowledge requirements throughout the three years. At KS4 content is not directly repeated until it is revised prior to assessments and ultimately the GCSE examinations. 

The topic of Software development tallows for mini-projects to build on earlier topics and introduce new ones thus create a series of interleaving topic sessions. 

Students’ misconceptions are regularly identified and addressed through the QLA of major assessments and using the diagnostic software packages Seneca and Smart revise. 

“Do now tasks” that revisit previous learning along with spaced learning, teaching like a champion techniques and Kagan structures are all used improve the ease of recall - automaticity. 

The UTC Fingerprint

The faculty has embraced the UCS mission/vision be establishing links with employers (Fujitsu Systems and Palo Alto Robotics) and the University of Bolton to work on projects. Century Tech delivered a six-week web-based unit to Year 9 in 2020-2021. As we have only recently returned from lockdown following the Covid pandemic the faculty is currently developing the mission/vision/ethos from Year 7 onwards. 

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Pedagogy

Virtual learning platforms in conjunction with AI has allowed a greater amount of individual pupil differentiation and bespoke pathways to be tailored to pupils. The department makes extensive use of Kagan and Teach Like a Champion (Lemov, 2021) strategies in line with the whole school policy to establish consistency across lessons. Pedagogy is constantly under review determine the best way to deliver content to students. Consistency across the department is tracked and measured by lesson observations, work scrutiny and Triads (teachers work in concert on pedagogical topics).  

Assessment

One piece of summative assessment work is produced every half-term and the data is collated in line with the whole school policy.  Students record their work extensively on the digital platform Showbie although Business Studies students use a mixture of exercise books and Showbie. All work is expected to conform to the UCS Bolton school wide policies and expectations. 

All students are expected to meet the UCS Bolton classroom expectations and to at a minimum achieve their targets. 

Students’ misconceptions are regularly identified and addressed through the QLA of major assessments and using the diagnostic software packages Seneca and Smart revise. 

The UTC Fingerprint

The faculty has embraced the UCS mission/vision be establishing links with employers (Fujitsu Systems and Palo Alto Robotics) and the University of Bolton to work on projects. Century Tech delivered a six-week web-based unit to Year 9 in 2020-2021. As we have only recently returned from lockdown following the Covid pandemic the faculty is currently developing the mission/vision/ethos from Year 7 onwards.