Design & Technology

The Design and Technology department at Longfield Academy are committed to delivering a curriculum accessible to all which provides the broadest possible range of opportunities for students. One which allows students to work independently and as part of a team. We aim to ensure that learners develop technical and practical competencies as well as the wider skills valued by employers. Our main priority is for students to be problem solvers, who are not afraid of making mistakes. We hope our students will become responsible citizens who make a positive contribution to society.

The department firmly believes that students learn best by ‘doing’ and by allowing them to experiment and take risks, in a safe and positive learning environment. This is achieved through imaginative teaching that embraces new technologies and resembles modern industrial processes, whilst retaining the best of traditional practices. At the heart of this, is the desire to deliver a curriculum in which students produce high quality outcomes. Students must learn about the social and ethical responsibilities of designers and engineers and the importance of managing finite resources with care.

The department, along with Engineering, have close links both to Cummins and additional employers through various STEM projects.

Learning Sequence Overview

Key Stage 3

Year 6 to 7 Transition Stage

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Sequence of Learning KS3

At Key stage 3 students follow a curriculum to give a stepping stone towards Design and Technology and Engineering at Key Stage 4. The advanced technologies used across the key stage give an insight into modern industrial processes with a basis of traditional skills.

Year 7

  • Graphics Project – students are given the skills to allow them to daw in 3 dimensions, adding tone and texture to aid the design process throughout the rest of their time at Longfield.
  • Resistant Materials Project – Students design and realise a product made from timber. They learn basic, traditional skills along with Computer Aided Design and Computer Aided Manufacture.
  • Electronics – Students develop basic electronic knowledge & skills and use to CAD skills to develop a small torch.

Year 8

  • Graphics/Engineering – students develop their drawing skills from year 7 to further improve their design abilities. Formal, Engineering Drawing is also taught at this time which will help them to produce formal working drawings in future projects.
  • Product design – students design and make a maze game using CAD/CAM including packaging. This project concentrates on research and developing skills allowing for a very professional finish.
  • Electronics – Students develop their electronic skills to produce a more complicated circuit.The nightlight also involves CAD/CAM to produce a creative product.

Year 9

  • Engineering Drawing – students develop their engineering drawing skills from year 8 to produce detailed scale drawings using both drawing boards and CAD.
  • Graphic Products – students design and realise a board game using both drawing skills and CAD/CAM. This project concentrates on research and developing skills allowing for a very professional finish.
  • CAD/CAM – Students use the skills from previous years and are given access to the departments 3D modelling software and realisation. A small project allows the use of the departments two 3D printers.

KS3 Intervention Programme

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How can parents/carers help?

Under construction…

Key Stage 4

Sequence of Learning KS4

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KS4 Intervention Programme

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GCSE Specification

The current GCSE course follows the AQA Design and Technology specification.

This qualification is linear. Linear means that students will sit all of their exams and submit all of their non-exam assessment at the end of the course.

Subject content

  • 1. Core technical principles
  • 2. Specialist technical principles
Paper 1

What’s assessed


  • Core technical principles
  • Specialist technical principles
  • Designing and making principles

How it’s assessed


  • Written exam: 2 hours
  • 100 marks
  • 50% of GCSE



Section A – Core technical principles (20 marks)

A mixture of multiple choice and short answer questions assessing a breadth of technical knowledge and understanding.

Section B – Specialist technical principles (30 marks)

Several short answer questions (2–5 marks) and one extended response to assess a more in depth knowledge of technical principles.

Section C – Designing and making principles (50 marks)

A mixture of short answer and extended response questions including a 12 mark design question.

  • 3. Designing and making principles


Non-exam assessment (NEA)

What’s assessed


Practical application of:

  • Core technical principles
  • Specialist technical principles
  • Designing and making principles

How it’s assessed


  • Non-exam assessment (NEA): 30–35 hours approx
  • 100 marks
  • 50% of GCSE



  • Substantial design and make task
  • Assessment criteria:
    • Investigating
    • Designing
    • Making
    • Analysing and Evaluating
  • In the spirit of the iterative design process, the above should be awarded holistically where they take place and not in a linear manner
  • Contextual challenges to be released annually by AQA on 1 June in the year prior to the submission of the NEA
  • Students will produce a working prototype and a portfolio of evidence (max 20 pages)
  • Work will be marked by teachers and moderated by AQA

Extra Information

Under construction…

How can parents/carers help?

Under construction…