Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility

3D Design A Level

A Level

someone hand drawing a design

Availability & Details

D&T Product Design - A Level AF1-DETEAL/C01

Alton Campus

Type of study
A Levels

(2 years)

Examination board
AQA Education

Apply Now

How to apply

Contact us


This course is intended to provide you with the skills and knowledge to be successful when applying for three dimensional design-based employment or degree courses e. g. Product Design, Industrial Design, Modelmaking, Craft, Furniture etc. But because the course is creative, technical and both practical and academic, it has also proved to be an excellent foundation for students with artistic, architectural or engineering intentions.

Designing uses a highly diverse set of skills and on this course, you will: research, analyse, summarise, define, plan, develop, prove, calculate, communicate, process, fabricate, test, evaluate and modify. When you have completed this course, you will have a digital portfolio as evidence of your broad skill set and management capability.

Five GCSEs at grade 9-4, including Mathematics and a creative or technical subject.

Year 1

– Project: To design and prototype a unique yet appropriate product for an identified group of users. In this project you will study how people interact with products, then you will draw up concepts, use CAD to communicate and simulate products, and model and prototype the parts of a proposal.
– Study: You will test material properties then learn about forming, joining and finishing processes for a range of materials e. g. casting, welding, plasma cutting, routing, milling, 3D printing etc.

Year 2
– Project: To design and prototype a product, or space, for an identified client or group of users. In this project, you will analyse situations and plan a project, generate and develop solutions, produce a one-off or prototype and then test its feasibility. 
– Study: You will gain an understanding of the range of constraints, influences and opportunities that impact the work of designers e. g. culture and society, industrialisation, sustainability, new technologies, human characteristics etc.

All lessons are undertaken in a large and modern purpose-built design and make space, where you can move from designing to making when you are ready. Everything from a modern CAD suite, layout space, workbenches and traditional and modern machinery is all combined in one space. This is successful because combined with integrated extraction are ceiling-mounted air filtration units and a downdraught (dust catching) workbench that retain high standards of air quality at all times.

You will be encouraged to develop independence in both thought and action, but staff are extensively available to support you with your work when you need more time or another opinion.

Learning is achieved through project work and topic-based activities. Projects help you to gain confidence, design capability and practical skills and allow you to focus on your interests.

50% course work: Design project
30% exam: Materials and Manufacturing
20% exam: Social, Moral, Environmental and Economic Issues Associated with Design

£35 for core textbook.Students will need to cover the cost of materials and resources used in the production of models and prototypes.

Students who successfully complete this course can, and have, moved onto Higher Education or into employment along the following design-based routes: product designer, industrial designer, product engineer, model-maker, craft-worker, production designer, draughtsperson, CAD operator, interior architect, architect, technologist, ergonomist etc.

I’m very, very happy, I didn’t expect to do so well. The College has been helpful and supportive. I loved my courses, and the teachers were really good – every single one of them. The facilities are great, but it’s the staff that really make this place.

Matthew Randell, A Level student

"I am delighted with my results and am really looking forward to studying Law at Oxford University. I really enjoyed my time at HSDC Alton and I really appreciate all the help and support from my fantastic teachers, without whom I wouldn't have got my place at Oxford."

Catherine Goldie, HSDC Alton A Level Student

I’m really happy and pleased with my grades. I really loved my time at the college, I have also made lots of friends, it’s a really nice place to be, I don’t want to leave.

Lauren Piper, A Level student