Design and Technology GCSE - Resistant Materials

In year 10 pupils now have two GCSE options for Design and Technology.

  1. AQA Resistant Materials (RM)
  2. AQA Graphic Products (GP)

Resistant Materials (AQA)

Resistant Materials is fundamentally a ‘design and make’ course using resistant materials (woods, metals, plastics and composites). Pupils undergo a controlled assignment project of their choice within themes set by the exam board. This could be as varied as designing and making a prototype model of a mobile phone, MP3 player or toaster or designing and making a full scale functioning product. As long as the project is achievable in the school workshops, can be completed in the time available, within the pupil’s budget and fits with the assessment criteria, then it can go ahead. This allows for pupils to pursue their own individual passions and interests.

The course consists of two elements

  1. Coursework (60%) – The design and manufacture of a product. This includes a design folder and a practical artifact. The folder and practical work are equally weighted. The coursework is split into 6 separate objectives which cover research, designing, development, planning for production and evaluation.
  2. Exam (40%)

Year 10 - Focus tasks

The coursework is completed over 5 terms in combination with a series of focus tasks that aim to develop some of the skills that are required for the theory exams and coursework. These vary from practical tasks, to rendering and sketching skills and using CAD/CAM. The exams are primarily based on the pupil’s knowledge of materials combined with sketched responses to simple design problems.

Exam results for GCSE Resistant Materials

Year A* A B C D E U
2011 6 6 10 2 0 0 0
2010 4 12 7 2 0 0 0
2009 8 11 8 4 1 0 0
2008 6 11 2 1 0 0 0
2007 8 8 10 1 0 0 0
2006 12 8 4 0 0 0 0
2005 5 6 8 1 0 0 0
2004 4 13 4 4 0 0 0

Graphic Products (AQA)

The Graphic Products course follows a similar style to the Resistant Materials course with 60% based on a coursework project and a 40%, design-based exam. The main difference is that materials used in the making part of the course. Instead of using Wood, Metal and Plastics the pupils use modelling materials like card, quality paper, ribbon, glitters and foamboard to create projects such as packaging, point of sale displays, interior or shop front models, promotion literature and Web design. Pupils produce an electronic design folder with added hand generated drawings which incorporates many different skills.

This year's GCSE coursework shows the diversity of projects highlights the high level of achievement again.

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Examination Board: OCR