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Computer Science

The computing department at Rugby Free Secondary School is committed to developing the skills and knowledge students need to allow them to succeed in all aspects of future careers and education, through a rich and diverse curriculum.

Students live in a digital age where their work environments and lives are ever adapting, and technology plays a bigger role than ever. The role of the computing curriculum is to equip students with computational thinking skills and understanding of the digital age so that they can better understand and live in a digital world.


The computer was born to 

solve problems that did not 

exist before. 


Bill Gates

Computing ensures that students are digitally literate and able to express themselves digitally. This is important as it prepares them for a job market where computational thinking skills are in demand.  


Not all students will study computer science at KS4 so it is essential that students gain a broad set of skills and an awareness of the subject and its impact on the modern world. Part of this involves developing students’ problem-solving abilities, which are transferable skills and impact a variety of other STEMM subjects.  


With a vast amount of resources, latest digital equipment available in the classrooms, and a rich extra-curricular provision, all students will receive a great learning experience, allowing them to develop their computational thinking, creativity, curiosity and collaborative skills, whilst working in a respectful and kind learning environment. This will provide them with an appreciation of how computing can be a part of any aspect of their life and how they can use these skills to understand and change the world. 

What are they learning?

Year 7

Topic 1 - Impact of Technology – Collaborating Online Respectfully Students are given sufficient time to familiarise themselves with the school network. They also focus on respecting others online, spotting strangers, and the effects of cyberbullying. Topic 2 - Using Media – Gaining Support for a Cause Students will develop software formatting skills and explore concerns surrounding the use of other people’s work, including licensing and legal issues. Topic 3 - Computer Networks Students will develop an understanding of the terms ‘internet’ and ‘World Wide Web’, and of the key services and protocols used. Topic 4 - Programming Essentials in Scratch The main programming concepts covered in this unit are sequencing, variables, selection, and count-controlled iteration. Topic 5 - Programming essentials 2 Students will learn how to create their own subroutines, develop their understanding of decomposition, learn how to create and use lists, and build upon their problem-solving skills by working through a larger project at the end of the unit Topic 6 – Programming – Physical Computing with the BBC Micro:bit Students will learn about the hardware used to make the micro:bit and then apply the programming concepts and skills learnt in previous units, on the micro:bit to design activities and games using an online code editor.

Year 9

In Year 9 students will focus on developing and building upon the key foundational skills that are required for GCSE Computer Science and Creative iMedia qualifications. Year 9 will recap all areas of fundamentals but at greater depth. This includes: further developing and expressing computational skills, research skills, understanding the importance of using a range of sources and how to discern reliability. Students will expand on programming skills and explore further areas of python programming. Students will also explore other areas of the creative and technological world, buy learning how to develop animations, anipulating digital graphics and how to develop material for the Web. Topic 1 - Cyber Security Students will then learn about social engineering and other common cybercrimes, and finally look at methods to protect against these attacks. Topic 2 - Developing for the Web Students will explore the technologies that make up the internet and World Wide Web. Explore the building blocks of the World Wide Web, HTML, and CSS. Topic 3 - Media - Animations Students will be introduced to the basics of modelling, texturing, and animating; outputs will include 3D models and short videos. Topic 4 - Physical Computing using MicroBit The unit applies and enhances the students’ programming skills in a new engaging context: physical computing, using the BBC micro:bit. Topic 5 - Python Programming with sequences of data This unit introduces students to how data can be represented and processed in sequences, such as lists and strings. Topic 6 - Representations - going audiovisual Students will focus on digital media such as images and sounds, and discover the binary digits that lie beneath these types of media.

Potential Careers relating to your subject

Software Engineer / Web Developer / Hardware Engineer / Computer Programmer / Database Administrator / Systems Analyst / Network Architect / Health Information / Tech Specialists / Video Game Developer / Teaching / Computer Games Tester / Cyber Intelligence Officer / E-learning Developer

Year 8

Topic 1 - Computer systems This unit takes students on a tour through the different layers of computing systems: from programs and the operating system, to the physical components that store and execute these programs, to the fundamental binary building blocks that these components consist of. Topic 2 - Data Representation Students are gradually introduced to binary digits and how they can be used to represent text and numbers. Topic 3 - Programming Mobile App Development This unit aims to take the students from designer to project manager to developer in order to create their own mobile app. Topic 4 - Programming Edublocks Python Curriculum. This unit aims to reiterate the core programming concepts as students transition from Scratch to Python. Topic 4 - Introduction to Text Based Python Programming The unit starts with simple programs involving input and output, and gradually moves on through arithmetic operations, randomness, selection, and iteration. Topic 5 - Data Modelling Using Spreadsheets Students will be able to confidently model data with a spreadsheet. This will include knowing how to use formulas and functions Topic 6 - Computer Ethics, Law and E-Safety - Ready Player One Students will develop a sound understanding of the moral, legal and ethical issues that have arisen or might arise from technology use now and in the future.​


Subject Content:

  1. Fundamentals of algorithms
  2. Programming
  3. Fundamentals of data representation
  4. Computer systems
  5. Fundamentals of computer networks
  6. Cyber security
  7. Relational databases and structured query language (SQL)
  8. Ethical, legal and environmental impacts of digital technology on wider society, including issues of privacy