GCSE Design and Technology

AQA: GCSE DESIGN AND TECHNOLOGY                                                                                                                                   OPTION SUBJECT


Almost everything we touch and use in our everyday life has passed through the hands of a designer. From the pen we write with to the computer in our office, the chair we are sitting on, even the orange juice carton in our fridge.   

Design and Technology deals with the practicalities of how everyday objects are created:

  • Who are designers, what do they do?
  • How is today's technology used to provide a better quality of life?
  • How does the manufacturing industry operate and what is mass production?
  • How can common materials, for example woods, metals and plastics, be formed into the complex products that we so often take for granted?


During Year 10 of the GCSE course, students tackle a series of mini projects that will cover a broad range of skills. Students will be taught to analyse products on the market and will develop opinions on style, fashion and functionality. They develop skills in how to communicate ideas and how to design a successful product. 
By hands-on experience the mini projects will also teach students a wide range of practical manufacturing skills ranging from working with wood, metal and plastic through to developing skills in computer aided design (CAD) and computer aided manufacture (CAM).

During Year 10, students will be given a theme for their major project which will account for the majority of     lesson time and homework during Year 11. Within the given theme, students will be able to design an original and fully functional product that meets the needs of a target market. Past design themes have covered a broad range of situations including jewellery and fashion accessories, educational toys for the young and attracting wildlife to the garden. Each student’s major project will draw on the skills learnt in Year 10 and will make up 50% of their final GCSE grade. The other 50% is a written design examination.

By the end of the course, students should have a greater consumer awareness of the material world, they should be able to recognise the needs of individuals and have the necessary skills to design and make quality


Design and Technology is a genuinely creative subject that gives students real opportunities to apply their knowledge and understanding from a broad range of other subjects. The skills developed make it an ideal
support subject to the Humanities as well as offering a practical application to the Sciences and Maths.

AS and A level Studies

Design and Technology, Art and Design, Business.

Degree Level

Product Design, Graphic Design, Civil or Mechanical Engineering, Architecture,
Surveying, Advertising and Marketing.