Information Communication Technology

The ICT department, strive to create an environment where good teaching and quality learning reside. The enthusiasm and subject knowledge of staff empowers students to take responsibility for their own learning. We believe that ICT skills are essential to the development of a student in this technological age.

Hylands is fortunate enough to be equipped with two dedicated ICT suites which run industry standard software including Microsoft Office 2010 and the Adobe Creative Suite.

Year 7

ICT is taught for two hours per week on a rotation with Technology which enables pupils to spend one half of the academic year focusing on ICT and the second half working in Technology. Throughout the year pupils will develop skills in a variety of software packages, ranging from the Microsoft Office Suite to bespoke programming applications. Pupils will study the following topics during their time in ICT in Year 7; ‘E-safety’, ‘The Use of Email’, ‘Animation’, ‘Binary and Control’ and ‘Data Analysis’.

Year 8

ICT is taught for two hours per week on a rotation, as in year 7. Pupils will be given the opportunity to further develop skills from the previous years teaching, in addition to being introduced to further specialist software packages. Pupils will be taught skills in the use databases, spreadsheets, sound editing, programming and digital publications.

At KS4 the ICT Department offer two GCSE Courses.


This course is made up of two units:

UNIT 1 – Living in the digital world (40%)

In this unit, students explore how digital technology impacts on the lives of individuals, organisations and society. Students learn about current and emerging digital technologies and the issues raised by their use in a range of contexts (learning and earning, leisure, shopping and money management, health and well-being, on the move). They develop awareness of the risks that are inherent in using ICT and the features of safe, secure and responsible practice.

This unit is externally assessed with a written exam paper at the end of the course.

UNIT 2: Using Digital Tools (60%)

This is a practical unit. Students broaden and enhance their ICT skills and capability. They work with a range of digital tools and techniques to produce effective ICT solutions in a range of contexts. Students learn to reflect critically on their own and others’ use of ICT and to adopt safe, secure and responsible practice. They put into practice what they learned about digital technology in Unit 1.

This unit is assessed through Controlled assessment tasks provided by the exam board.

OCR GCSE Computing

This course gives students a real, in-depth understanding of how computer technology works. The course will give them an insight into what goes on ‘behind the scenes’, including computer programming which many students find absorbing. Students will develop critical thinking, analysis and problem solving skills which can be transferred into everyday life.

There are three units in this course:

A451: Computer systems and programming

Student explores a range of computational theory. This is externally assed with a written exam

A452: Practical investigation

This is on a chosen topic from a list of options provided by the exam board. Students will produce an in-depth investigative report which is assessed by controlled assessment.

A453: Programming project

In this unit students create solutions to computing tasks chosen from a set of options provided by the exam board. Students will have the opportunity to put their programing theory from unit A4521 into practice, this unit is also assessed through controlled assessment.

Key Stage 5

In the Sixth Form, we offer two different qualifications to enable students to study ICT in a way that compliments their style of learning. These include;

A-level Information and Communication Technology

This motivating and challenging course aims to encourage students to become active investigators with a full understanding of when, why and how to use ICT appropriately. The combination of both theory and practical work aims to fully equip students for a world beyond their A-Level Study.

This course has been developed for students who wish to progress to higher education or to the world of work, where understanding how ICT can be used in society and organisations, and the implications of its use, will be a valuable asset.

BTEC Nationals Level 3 in Information Technology

For school leavers in a world where technology is advancing at an ever increasing speed and competition for employment is fierce, it is essential to possess good IT skills and knowledge to be able to have access to a range of opportunities in higher education or employment. 

You will learn to develop your skills in a wide range of software applications used in business today and knowledge that will enable you to understand the world of IT in greater depth. As well as general ICT skills for employment, there units that specialise in a specific area of ICT.

Students will study six units over two years, two units are compulsory units set by the exam board and four are optional units chosen by the ICT department, the course is 100% coursework based. The units studied are:

  • Unit 1 – Communication and employability skills for information technology (Compulsory)

  • Unit 2 Computer Systems (Compulsory)

  • Unit 9 Compute Networks (Optional)

  • Unit 28 Website Production (Optional)

  • Unit 30 Digital Graphics (Optional)

  • Unit 31 Computer Animation (Optional)

Although the course does support progression into higher education, the Cambridge TEC is an ideal foundation for students entering employment. It provides students with a theoretical background reinforced with practical skills that successfully transfer into the modern workplace.