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A-level Computer ScienceApply Now »

Note - you only need to make one application for A-levels. You can specify the additional A-Levels you wish to study when you fill out the application form

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Level: 3

Location: Joseph Wright Centre

Years: 2

24+ Loan Amount: 2583.00****

Interview: Y

Course Summary

It’s impossible to imagine a world without computers. No Internet or online communications, no mobile phones or digital cameras, no modern transportation - cars, trains or planes.  This course will teach you how to use computers to make the world work as it does.

You’ll learn how to program a computer to behave as you want it to, anything from controlling a robot to making life-saving calculations or building your own version of Amazon. You’ll learn how computers communicate together to form networks like the Internet.

You’ll also learn an important life skill: how to formulate and solve problems.  This is a great foundation for being able to solve challenges that lie in the future - not only for computer scientists but also for people in a wide variety of professions.

Entry requirements

You will need a minimum of five GCSEs at grade C equivalent or above, including English at grade 5 and Maths at grade 4.

You will have an interview and initial assessment. Parents and carers are welcome to attend the interview but not the initial assessment. If you are successful, you will be allocated a place to study.

To progress to the second year, you will need to demonstrate a Pass grade or above in your first year.

Course Content

  1. Fundamentals of programming
  2. Fundamentals of data structures
  3. Software development
  4. Theory of computation
  5. Fundamentals of data representation
  6. Fundamentals of computer systems
  7. Fundamentals of computer organisation and architecture
  8. Consequences of uses of computing
  9. Fundamentals of communication and networking
  10. Fundamentals of databases
  11. Big Data
  12. Fundamentals of functional programming
  13. Systematic approach to problem solving
  14. Non-exam assessment - the computing practical project

How will I be assessed?

40% - An on-screen examination

40% - Written examination

20% - Non-examination assessment

Are there any additional costs or specialist equipment required?

No

What can I do after this course?

What can I study after the course?

Students can go on to higher education courses or employment where knowledge of computing would be beneficial.

What careers does it lead to?

Students can study Computer Science and go on to a career in fields such as medicine, law, technology, business, accounting, ICT, e-commerce, politics, maths, teaching or any type of science.

Apply Now »

Note - you only need to make one application for A-levels. You can specify the additional A-Levels you wish to study when you fill out the application form

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This course is run at the Joseph Wright Centre

About Joseph Wright Centre »

Emily Gray

Emily Gray

Peak Award Winner Emily now studying for master’s in Australia

Former Peak Award winner Emily Gray was motivated to achieve “more than she ever thought she was capable of” while studying for A levels at Derby College.   And, since leaving Joseph Wright Centre 10 years ago, she has quite literally gone a long way – to university in Melbourne, Australia, to take a Master of Education degree in Applied Behaviour Analysis.  
 
Now 27, Emily received a Peak Award for Academic Studies after performing well in her sociology, history and psychology A levels and EPQ, the Extended Project Qualification.   While on her psychology degree course at the University of Leeds, Emily embarked on a study year at Monash University in Melbourne.  
 
And, since graduating, she has taught English in Peru, volunteered and worked in Sri Lanka and travelled in Australia before settling in Melbourne with her partner.  
 
Currently studying for her master’s at Monash University, Emily also works as a site manager at a centre-based intervention service based on the principles of Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA) for pre-school aged children on the autism spectrum.  
 
She ultimately wants to become a clinical psychologist or clinical director of an agency providing ABA.  
 
Commenting on her Peak Award in 2009, Emily added that it was “really unexpected and a huge honour.” She included the award in her CV and found it was “something she was able to talk about in interviews.”            

My lecturers were fantastic!  They were really passionate about their subject, particularly psychology lecturer Glyn Pickering, who motivated me and pushed me to achieve more than I thought I was capable of.


I also got great support at Derby College in applying for university and higher education. I was able to go on a residential trip to experience Oxford University, and received specialist and individual help with my application, personal statement and interview preparation.

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