Electronic & Mechanical Systems

Key Stage 4

What will students learn?

This qualification focuses on the design process and understanding how to develop products to successful outcomes. It develops students’ drawing and design skills, furthers their knowledge of technical products and will be biased towards electronic & mechanical devices.


How will students be taught?

The subject content is presented under two headings: technical principles & designing and making principles. Within each area, the content is further divided into core knowledge & understanding, and in-depth knowledge & understanding. In this case we cover the core knowledge content and then specialise in the area of electronic systems, programmable components and mechanical devices.

Students will be taught through a series of projects which include elements of practical skills, theoretical knowledge and design skills for working with electronic systems. Homework tasks, videos, practical demonstrations and computer aided design software will be used as key learning tools.


How will students be assessed?

This qualification consists of two components:

Component 1:        Design and Technology in the 21st Century - 
                                  written examination (2 hours)

A mix of short answers, structured and extended writing questions assessing candidates’ knowledge and understanding of technical principles, designing and making principles and their ability to analyse and evaluate design decisions.

Component 2:        Design and Make Task (35 hours)

A sustained design and make task, based on a contextual challenge set by the exam board, assessing candidates’ ability to identify, investigate and outline design possibilities; simulate, design, develop and make circuit prototypes; analyse and evaluate design decisions and the practical outcome.


Examination board & course type

AQA – GCSE Design & Technology (8552)


What can studying this subject lead to?

A GCSE in Design & Technology is required for entry into A level Graphics and A level Product Design at grade 6. Many students that have studied a similar route have gone on to careers in aerospace, marine & power engineering, architecture, construction & product designing.

Many important life skills such as time management, planning and organisational skills are key to the designing and making process.

As well as a GCSE level qualification, students will also leave the course with a portfolio of design evidence and a practical piece of work that can be shown to future employers and educational institutes to help demonstrate their designing and practical skills and potential for the future.


Revision Advice

A subject specific guide featuring key content, recommended resources and the specifications we cover in that particular subject can be downloaded below:

Electronic & Mechanical Systems


Teacher to contact for further information

Mr J Jenner

Electronic & Mechanical Systems Curriculum Overview