Design and Technology

People say you can have something fast, good or cheap but you can only choose two. In the Design and Technology Department, we enable our students to prove this theory wrong. As well as being a creative subject, D and T is academic and addresses real-world problems.

The subject has transformed in the last 15 years and now allows for true Product Design. It allows students to work with a wealth of different materials and teaches invaluable life-skills. Design and Technology encourages girls to apply academic knowledge and push the boundaries of their imaginations in tandem whilst equipping them with the multi-disciplinary approach required for the 21st century. They are encouraged to enter competitions and apply for schemes such as the Arkwright Scholarship. Success in these areas increases pupils’ awareness of the design process and confidence during studies.


Years 7-9

In Year 7, girls study the characteristics of different materials, their sustainability and uses. Pupils do a range of focused practical tasks and some design and make tasks, which enables them to familiarise themselves with the working properties of wood, metal, plastic and textiles.

The Year 8 course builds on the previous year to include the use of structures and computer-aided design and manufacture (CAD/CAM). Pupils design and make towers, bridges and clocks using both compliant and resistant materials.

In Year 9, girls build on the previous two years to include mechanisms. The course extends the pupils’ knowledge and experience gained in Year 7 and Year 8. A mechanism module allows pupils to apply new knowledge to a concept design for reducing the volume of waste which is to be recycled and so make easier its transport and storage. The project also focuses on sustainability, creativity and modelling. Extending work done using CAD/CAM in Year 8, pupils’ now progress to designing a three-dimensional product. It is designed by the pupils on the computer and then machined by a computer-controlled machine. This calls for absolute accuracy to ensure that the artefact will assemble and function correctly. Finally, they revisit a topic first introduced to them in Year 7, Jewellery. Using all the skills and knowledge about materials and techniques gained over the three years, pupils design and manufacture an original item of jewellery.


In years 10 and 11 the subject follows the WJEC Design and Technology:  Product Design specification. This provides an opportunity for the pupil to experience the production of their own design prototypes from conception through to testing and evaluation of the finished product.  The first year of the course consists of a number of short focused ‘design and make’ tasks that will give the pupils the skills, knowledge and confidence to tackle the Controlled Assessment Task (CAT) in the second year.  These skills include graphic communication, presentation drawing, Desk Top Publishing, workshop production skills such as machining skills, moulding, and CAD/CAM.  The specification content also looks at the deeper and broader issues affecting design such as sustainability, legislative issues and commercial manufacturing.  Students leave Year 10 having covered the majority of the theory and skills required for Year 11 and have a sound grasp of what is expected in the CAT.

Design and Technology: Product Design A level

Why study Design and Technology?

The Eduqas A level in Design and Technology offers a unique opportunity in the curriculum for learners to identify and solve real problems by designing and making products or systems.

Design and Technology is an inspiring, rigorous and practical subject. This specification encourages learners to use creativity and imagination when applying iterative design processes to develop and modify designs, and to design and make prototypes that solve real world problems, considering their own and others’ needs, wants, aspirations and values.

The specification enables learners to identify market needs and opportunities for new products, initiate and develop design solutions, and make and test prototypes. Learners should acquire subject knowledge in Design and Technology, including how a product can be developed through the stages of prototyping, realisation and commercial

Learners should take every opportunity to integrate and apply their understanding and knowledge from other subject areas studied during key stage 4, with a particular focus on Science and Mathematics, and those subjects they are studying alongside A level Design and Technology.

You will study the following topics in class and the workshop using a variety of up to date resources: text books, video, listening, articles, websites, songs, machines, processes etc.

A level Design and Technology (Product Design) is currently taught to girls and boys at Monmouth School for Boys.

Monmouth School for Boys Head of Department: Mr A J White

Course content

Board: Eduqas (WJEC)   A level Syllabus Code: A602QS

Learners follow one endorsed route through this specification: either Fashion and Textiles, or Product Design.  At Monmouth School for Boys we run this course for Product Design.

The subject content within section 2.1 and section 2.2  is presented under seven main headings:

Designing and innovation Product analysis and systems
Materials and components Human responsibility
Processes Public interaction
Industrial and commercial practice

Within each area, the content is further divided into sub-headings, each with specified content and amplification. The structure of the content within the two endorsed routes is shown in the tables on the School Intranet (Firefly).

The specification content and assessment requirements are designed to ensure learners develop an appropriate breadth and depth of knowledge and understanding at an advanced level in Design and Technology.

Method of assessment

Component 1: Design and Technology in the 21st Century
Written examination: 3 hours (50% of qualification)

The examination includes a mix of structured and extended writing questions assessing learners’ knowledge and understanding of technical principles, designing and making principles, along with their ability to analyse and evaluate wider issues in design and technology.

Component 2: Design and make project
Non-examination assessment: approximately 80 hours (50% of qualification)

A sustained design and make project, based on a brief developed by the candidate, assessing the candidate’s ability to identify, investigate and outline design possibilities, design and make prototypes, analyse and evaluate design decisions and outcomes, including for prototypes made by themselves and others.