Subject content

A-level Design and Technology: Product Design requires students to engage in both practical and theoretical study. This specification requires students to cover design and technology skills and knowledge as set out below. These have been separated into:

  • technical principles
  • designing and making principles.

The specification content is presented in a two column format. The left hand column contains the specification content all students must cover, and forms the basis for the assessments. This column gives additional information to ensure students study the topic in appropriate depth and gives teachers the parameters in which the subject will be assessed.

Students should develop the ability to draw on and apply a range of skills and knowledge from other subject areas to inform their decisions in design and the application or development of technology. There are clear links between aspects of the specification content and other subject areas such as Computer Science (section ‘The use of computer systems’ and section ‘Digital design and manufacture’); Business Studies (section ‘Enterprise and marketing in the development of products; Art and Design (section ‘Design communication’) and History (section ‘Design Theory’). This is not an exhaustive list, and there are other opportunities within the specification for students to integrate and apply their wider learning and understanding from other subject areas studied during Key Stage 4, as well as those subjects that they are studying alongside A-level Design and Technology.

Students must also demonstrate maths and science skills. The right hand column throughout subject content illustrates potential links where maths and science skills and knowledge can be applied in the context of design and technology. These are examples of where these skills can be applied and are not intended to be exhaustive.

The maths and science skills and knowledge as required by the DfE are set out in Appendix 1: Links to maths and science .

Subject content areas