Exam Board Entry Requirements Subject Leader
AQA Grade 6 or higher in Design & Technology. Mr I Garrod

This course is designed to provide students with a balanced and coherent study of all elements of design and technology. Students have the opportunity to study, propose and realise prototype solutions to designing and making situations closely linked to the real world of product/system manufacture.

This qualification will excite and engage learners with contemporary topics covering the breadth of this dynamic and evolving subject. It will create empathetic learners who have the ability to confidently critique products, situations and society in every walk of their lives now and in the future.

Summary- Unit 1

The paper is set out through four sets of questions that predominantly cover technical principles within each endorsed title.  Learners will be required to:

  • analyse existing products
  • demonstrate applied mathematical skills
  • demonstrate their technical knowledge of materials, product functionality, manufacturing processes and techniques
  • demonstrate their understanding of wider social, moral and environmental issues that impact on the design and manufacturing industries.

Summary- Unit 2

This component has two sections that respond to selected tasks.

  • Section A focuses on learners applying their knowledge, understanding and skills of designing and manufacturing prototypes and products.
  • Section B requires learners to reflect on their design task in Section A in relation to wider factors/issues from the design principles.

Summary- Unit 3

The ‘Iterative Design Project’ requires learners to undertake a substantial design, make and evaluate project centred on the iterative processes of explore, create and evaluate.

Learners identify a design opportunity of problem from a context of their own choice and create a portfolio of evidence in real time through the project to demonstrate their competence.


Principles of Design  (01) – 75 marks, 1 hour 30 minutes written paper (25% of total A level)

Unseen Challenge* (02) – 75 marks, 2 hours 30 minutes design/written paper (25% of total A level)

Iterative Design Project * (03, 04) – 150 marks, approximately 45 hours, non-exam assessment (50% of total A level)

* Indicates inclusion of synoptic assessment.


Progression into Higher Education/Vocational Destinations

The knowledge, understanding and skills gained in a course such as this will be a great benefit to students pursuing further studies, in their personal lives and in the world of work. The course encourages an awareness and understanding of economic, political, social and environmental factors relevant to this subject. Many students have successfully progressed to universities to study Product and Industrial design.

The AS and A2 are designed to offer candidates opportunities to study, propose and realise prototype solutions closely linked to the real world of product and system manufacture. Career prospects are excellent and it has opened doors to computer programming, electrical engineering, product design, industrial design, architecture and Formula 1.