Curriculum Intent

Design & Technology Intent

At Nottingham Emmanuel School the Design Technology curriculum provides a rich, challenging, enjoyable and enhancing programme of learning. It is a contemporary and varied curriculum which enables pupils to participate in tomorrow’s rapidly changing technologies. Pupils combine practical skills with an understanding of aesthetics, social and environmental issues, function and industrial practices. Pupils learn to design and make products that solve genuine, relevant problems within different contexts, whilst considering their own and others’ needs, wants and values. For example across Key Stage 3 pupils design and products using textiles, wood, metal, plastic, and food. In Key Stage 4 pupils can opt to study Design and Technology, Hospitality and Catering, Construction, or Art Textiles.

Through a variety of creative and practical activities, we teach the knowledge, understanding and skills needed to engage in an iterative process of designing, making and evaluating. When designing, pupils will use their research to generate creative design ideas that are communicated clearly using annotated sketches and accurate technical working drawings. When making, Nottingham Emmanuel School pupils work with a wide range of materials and techniques both traditional and contemporary. They use their understanding to carefully select the tools, processes and manufacturing techniques needed to create their design.

The subject includes the practical application of mathematical and scientific concepts combined with practical skills, and an understanding of aesthetic, social and environmental issues, linked together with industrial practices. Through the evaluation of: their own work; past and present designers; and the work of others; our pupils develop a critical understanding of its impact on daily life and the wider world. Design Technology at Nottingham Emmanuel School will enable pupils to become a discriminating and informed consumers and promising innovators.

AQA GCSE in Design and Technology (8552)

This qualification is linear. Linear means that students will sit all their exams and submit all their non-exam assessment at the end of the course.

Subject content:

  1. Core technical principles
  2. Specialist technical principles
  3. Designing and making principles

Paper 1

  • Written exam: 2 hours
  • 100 marks
  • 50% of GCSE

Section A – Core technical principles (20 marks)
A mixture of multiple choice and short answer questions assessing a breadth of technical knowledge and understanding.

Section B – Specialist technical principles (30 marks)
Several short answer questions (2–5 marks) and one extended response to assess a more in depth knowledge of technical principles.

Section C – Designing and making principles (50 marks)
A mixture of short answer and extended response questions.

Non-exam assessment (NEA)

  • Non-exam assessment: 30-35 hours approximately
  • 100 marks
  • 50% of GCSE


  • Substantial design and make task
  • Assessment criteria:
    • Identifying and investigating design possibilities
    • Producing a design brief and specification
    • Generating design ideas
    • Developing design ideas
    • Realising design ideas
    • Analysing & evaluating
  • In the spirit of the iterative design process, the above should be awarded holistically where they take place and not in a linear manner
  • Contextual challenges to be released annually by AQA on 1 June in the year prior to the submission of the NEA
  • Students will produce a prototype and a portfolio of evidence
  • Work will be marked by teachers and moderated by AQA

WJEC Level 1/2 Vocational Award in Hospitality and Catering (Technical Award) (5409)

Unit 1: The hospitality and catering industry

  • Written exam: 1 hour 20 minutes
  • 80 marks
  • 40% of qualification

Questions requiring short and extended answers, based around applied situations. Learners will be required to use stimulus material to respond to questions.

Unit 2: Hospitality and catering in action

  • Controlled assessment: approximately 12 hours
  • 120 marks
  • 60% of qualification

An assignment brief will be provided by WJEC which will include a scenario and several tasks available via the WJEC Secure Website.

WJEC Level 1/2 Vocational Award in Construction and the Built Environment (Technical Award) (E819QA)

Unit 1: Introduction to the Built Environment

  • On-screen examination: 1 hour 30 minutes
  • 80 marks
  • 40% of qualification

Questions requiring objective responses, short and extended answers, based around applied situations. Learners may be required to use stimulus material to respond to questions.

Unit 3: Constructing the Built Environment

  • Controlled assessment: 30 hours
  • 120 marks
  • 60% of qualification

An assignment brief will be provided by WJEC that will include a scenario and several tasks available via the WJEC Secure Website.

AQA GCSE in Art and Design (Textile design)

Component 1

  • Portfolio
  • 96 marks
  • 60% of GCSE

Students develop responses to initial starting points, project briefs or specified tasks and realise intentions informed by research, the development and refinement of ideas and meaningful engagement with selected sources. Responses will include evidence of drawing for different purposes and needs and written annotation.

Component 2

  • Externally set assignment
  • 96 marks
  • 40% of GCSE

Students respond to a starting point provided by AQA. This response provides evidence of the student’s ability to work independently within specified time constraints, realise intentions that are personal and meaningful and explicitly address the requirements of all four assessment objectives.


AQA: GCSE Design and Technology
BBC Bitesize: GCSE Design and Technology
Technology Student: Revision Resources
Seneca Learning: GCSE Design and Technology

Hospitality and Catering


Art Textiles

Careers Links

Design & Technology can lead to a huge range of different job roles. It is an excellent source of transferable skills that can be applied to a range of different career paths. Click here for examples of some of the employability skills Design & Technology can provide.


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The Nottingham Emmanuel School
Gresham Park Road
West Bridgford
Tel: 0115 977 5380

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The Nottingham Emmanuel School