Our fascination with design goes back to flint arrow heads and earthenware pots. As a designer you need creativity and resilience, in order to imagine and realise the shape and function of the object.
Our fascination with design goes back to flint arrow heads and earthenware pots. As a designer you need creativity and resilience, in order to imagine and realise the shape and function of the object. You will need to understand industrial manufacturing processes, materials and marketing. Design and Technology A Level enables students to participate successfully and with confidence in an increasingly technological world. We want students to explore new ideas of originality and value, to question and challenge old ideas, to consider the environmental, social and moral aspects of life in the 21st Century. We need thinkers and problem solvers, students who can communicate their ideas and look outside of their comfort zone.
A-Level Paper 1: Technical Principles—30%
2.5 hour paper that is a mixture of short and long answer questions.
Questions will test students understanding of materials and processes commonly used to manufacture products.
A-Level Paper 2: Designing and Making Principles—20%
1.5 hour paper that is a mixture of short and long answer questions.
Questions will test student’s understanding of product analysis and methods of commercial manufacture.
Coursework Project—substantial design and make Task (NEA—non-exam assessment) - 50%
Students can choose their own design brief and are not limited by the exam board.
45 hours on producing the finished outcome and a design portfolio of approximately 45 pages.
Exam Board and Specification
Exam board: AQA
Exam specification: A Level Design and Technology: Product Design
Please see the entry requirements document here
Is This Course Right For Me?
If you are interested in design, enjoy problem solving and testing out solutions then this is the course for you. A-level Design and Technology: Product Design is a qualification that combines all materials areas and develops students knowledge and understanding of designing and engineering. Students will develop the skills required to design and make products and appreciate the complex relations between design, materials, manufacture and marketing. The subject is also a great introduction to engineering and using practical solutions to solve and overcome design problems. In first half of Year 12; students work on a portfolio based around several projects that will help to build up practical and design skills. Students will then work on their major coursework project where they set the design brief themselves and can design and make a project from any material combination that they wish.
Please watch our short video to see what studying Product Design at Guilsborough Sixth Form is like.
Product design has been a great way to explore design in general. At a-level your main project can literally be anything and whilst this is very daunting at first it also gives you the freedom to create something meaningful and personal.
Emily, Year 12 student
Product design has enabled me to develop my creative skills while understanding the history and production of materials.
Joanne, Year 12 student
Product design at A-level offers a lot of freedom over what you can design and has taught me essential problem-solving skills. The theory work also encourages you to be more aware of the world around you.
Libby, Year 12 student
Where will A Level Product Design take me past Sixth Form?
Product Design incorporates many skills and areas of knowledge that can be used in conjunction with other subjects. This subject can therefore lead to many varied careers including; Engineering, Automotive Design, Sports Innovation, Architecture, Human factors design, Product manufacture, Graphic Design Engineering, Furniture design, Computer Programming and Set design for TV/film industry
Please visit out Careers Guidance page for more information
Some examples of universities and their entry requirements to study Product Design and other related degrees are;
Loughborough University BSc(Hons) Product Design and Technology requires ABB from 3 A-Levels including A-Level Physics or Maths, plus grade B in A-Level Design and Technology or Art and Design
Brunel University London BSc Product Design requires GCE A-level ABB, including at least Grade B in Design and Technology, Product Design, Art or Art and Design and at least Grade B Maths or Physics (General Studies not accepted).
Birmingham City University BSc Product Design requiresBBC at A-Level or 280 UCAS tariff points from A/AS Level with a minimum of 2 A-Levels
Sheffield Hallam University BEng (Honours) Materials Engineering requires 280 points from GCE/VCE A levels