Year 9 Options - Computer Science


Things have come a long way since Charles Babbage planned his Difference Engine in the 1820s. Computing devices now dominate the modern world. It is arguably the most significant technology of the 21st century. If you want to be involved in the use and direction of this technology (with all the benefits for your career that this would involve) then a GCSE in Computer Science would get you in on the ground floor…


Computing is technical! What follows is a short description of what you will study. By the end of the course you will understand all the phrases in the table below.

An introduction to computer systems. This includes:

  • Computer Systems architecture (including CPU, RAM and storage).
  • Wired and Unwired Networks (including topologies, protocols and layers).
  • System Software and Security.
  • Ethical, Legal, cultural and environmental issues.

An introduction to programming, computational thinking and the software development lifecycle.  This includes:

  • Designing Algorithms.
  • Programming techniques which allow the construction of robust programs.
  • Computational Logic.
  • Computer translation.
  • Data representation.

You will learn how to design, code and test your own computer programmes. As part of this you will study the high level programming language, Python. You will complete a 20 hour programming controlled assessment to test your proficiency in this. In Computing, we use a mixture of formally taught lessons and tutorial “cookbook” style lessons. Much of the homework is based around a “flipped” lesson where you watch prepared videos or read prepared material upon which you later complete a test. You need an interest in computing and maths.  Above all however, you need to be highly motivated and willing to put the work, both in class and at home, to get a good result.


  • 2 external exams (length 1.5 hrs) 100%

You can find further details on our course by checking for GCSE Computer Science course (code : J276) on the OCR examination website.