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GCSE Product Design

Awarding Body : AQA

Overview of Course

This course aims to develop your creativity, technological know-how and design capability. You will apply your knowledge and understanding of technology and industrial practices to develop and manufacture a high quality product or product range in a variety of materials.

Content and Assessment

Materials and Components

Students should have a knowledge and understanding of the processes and techniques which aid manufacture and of the commercial and industrial applications of a range of materials involved in manufacturing their products in quantity. It is expected that designing and making will address complete product issues and therefore deal with materials which would aid manufacture, such as moulds, cutting dies, printing blocks, jigs etc. as well as dealing with issues such as labelling, packaging etc. It will be important therefore that students can utilise a variety of suitable materials and components.

Design and Market Influences

Students should develop an understanding of the broad perspectives of the designed world. This will include the appreciation of line, shape, form, proportion, colour, movement and texture within a critical awareness of aesthetics and ergonomics.

Processes and Manufacture

Students should understand that commercial manufacturing is a system, or group of sub-systems, have an understanding of the application of CNC (Computer Numeric Control) in modern manufacturing as appropriate to a specific material area and understand how computer-aided manufacture (CAM) is used both in manufacturing in quantity and in the production of single items and small batches; understand how CAD/CAM allows for higher levels of accuracy, repeatability and efficiency.

Ethical, Environmental &Sustainability Issues

Students should take into consideration the ethical , environmental and sustainability issues relating to the design and manufacture of products i.e. fair trade, product miles, carbon footprint, product disposal, and the following related principles: re-use, recycle, repair, reduce, rethink, refuse, etc.

Industrial and Commercial Practice

Students should understand that products are manufactured to different scales of production i.e. one-offs, batch, mass, continuous, just in time (JIT); design and make for one-off, batch and mass production.

Unit 1 – Written paper 40% of total marks for GCSE

  • 2 hour written paper
  • 120 marks
  • Students will answer all questions from two sections
  • Pre-released material issued by the exam board , the context relates to 25% of the written paper

Unit 2 – PROD2 Learning Through Designing and Making 60% of the total marks for GCSE > Coursework – Approx. 45 hours

  • 90 marks
  • Written (or electronic) design portfolio
  • Manufactured outcome(s)
  • Context given

Career Links The study of Product Design at GCSE may lead to employment opportunities in such roles as:- Drafting and Design Engineer, Computer Engineer, Mechanical Engineer, Electrical Engineer, Computer Engineer, Civil Engineer and many other roles.