Digital : IT Computer Science

A Level

screen of computer code

Availability & Details

Computer Science, A-Level AF-COMPAL-D(0000)000

Venue
Alton Campus

Type of study
Full-Time

Dates
Academic Year 2021-22 (2 years)

Examination board
AQA

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How to apply

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Overview

In Computer Science, you’ll like a challenge and will have a logical approach to solving problems. A large part of this course involves learning how to use a variety of programming languages to write computer programs to solve a series of problems. Towards the end of your first year, you’ll be able to call yourself a Computer Programmer! Computer Science is a technical subject within which you’ll also gain an understanding of the internal structure of a computer, how the CPU actually functions, the role binary plays in storing all of the data on all of the computers in the world and also how the internet manages to function correctly on a day-to-day basis.

You should normally have achieved at least five GCSEs at grade 9-4.

You will need a logical mind to write your own computer program successfully and for this reason it is recommended that you have at least grade 5 in GCSE Mathematics.

At HSDC Alton on the Computer Science A Level you will:

  • Cover topics such as programming, data structures, algorithms, databases, computer systems and networks
  • Be taught how to create ‘good’ computer programs
  • Develop a systematic approach to solving problems using both procedural, event-driven and functional programming languages such as: C#, Haskell, Java, Pascal, Prolog, Python and Visual Basic
  • Complete a practical programming project based on the requirements of a real end user
  • Analyse and design a range of challenging problems before creating and testing solutions
  • Learn how a computer translates a computer program into a form that the CPU can understand
  • Find out about binary, hexadecimal and how to analyse and simplify Boolean logic
  • Understand what really happens in the ‘heart’ of a CPU
  • Be able to fully appreciate what happens when you click on a link to browse the Internet
  • Gain an understanding of how a computer can create and play music recorded as a series of 1’s and 0’s

Lesson activities will include writing a number of computer programs to solve a range of challenging problems, independently researching how devices and systems function, working on individual programming projects, actively participating in class discussion plus a number of quizzes to test understanding.

80% exams, 20% course work.
Two exam papers; Paper 1 (on-screen exam includes programming), Paper 2 (written exam).

No additional costs. The course textbook is available online.


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

College has been the best two years of my education. All my teachers were great and amazing, and I think they were the most helpful they could have been.

Megan Capaldi-Tallon, A Level student

I focused and worked hard to get the grades. I had some support from my lecturer during a stressful time. The college is really good and supportive.

Natasha Boerer, BTEC student