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A Level Computer Science

If you enjoy learning about the fundamental principles and concepts behind Computer Science and how software is engineered, then Computer Science will stretch and challenge you, helping you to think creatively, analytically, logically and to apply practical mathematical skills.

Why Choose This Course?

The basis of this course is computation, both in theory and practice. Computer Science is an academic subject that requires you to be systematic and logical, and so often lends itself to the more technically minded student. The course will provide you with valuable skills in how we use programming languages and how digital technology is used. You’ll start off by developing practical skills. You will have the opportunity to perform systems analysis, software engineering and program construction. Then you’ll move on to learn how software interacts with hardware, in particular the role of the operating system, data structures and processes and how the principles of hardware impact on software and data communication.

You will discover how different types of software drive the digital economy and the implications of the digital revolution on the rest of society. You will also examine issues with digital security and undertake a major piece of independent coursework on a software problem of your own choice. As computers are now such an integral part of society, people with A Level Computer Science skills are in extremely high demand. The many career possibilities that are available to you with Computer Science include system analysis, computer programming, animation and many more. Previous students now work around the world for companies ranging from Google to local businesses working with robotics and embedded systems.

Apply for this course

Start date: 09/09/2024

Course code
Level 3
Penwith College
2 years
A Level

Top Course Highlights

Industry-standard software

Small class sizes

Excellent tutor support

Industry links

Computing And IT 0004

Specialist software

Digital workshops offer all students access to develop skills in industry-standard software including Visual Studio, containing .NET languages like C#.

Computing and IT at Truro and Penwith College

Friendly and experienced staff

Computer Science lecturers are friendly, supportive and hardworking. Achievement in this subject relies heavily on your attendance, punctuality and commitment to learning, both independently and within lectures.

Computing And IT 0003

Industry links and progression

Students make the step towards a career in industry by progressing into technology specialisms at university like cybersecurity or artificial intelligence or by working with local technology organisations.

What Will I Learn?

You will study three components:

  1. Programming and System Development (exam) – 40%. Logical operations; data structures; algorithms and programs; principles of programming; systems analysis; software engineering; program construction; practical programming; and economic, moral, legal, ethical and cultural issues.
  2. Computer Architecture, Data, Communication and Applications (exam) – 40%. Hardware and communication; data transmission; data representation and data types; organisation of data; database systems; the operating system; the need for different types of software systems and their attributes; data security and integrity processes;
  3. Programmed Solution to a Problem (coursework) – 20%. The aim of coursework is to allow you to investigate, design, prototype, refine the design, implement, test and evaluate your own solution to a substantial software problem chosen by you. It requires you to carry out two different kinds of practical activity conducted over a minimum of 72 guided learning hours: a written report and software development (evidenced in annotated listings and test runs).

Where Will It Take Me?

Students can progress onto a degree course in computer science, networking, cybersecurity, or robotics. There are many career possibilities with Computer Science, including system analysis, computer programming, animation, and many more. Computer Science allows routes into engineering, science or to be a programmer/software engineer.

Assessment Arrangements

Your achievement in this subject is dependent upon excellent attendance, punctuality and effort. You will learn in a friendly atmosphere, using a variety of assessment methods.

You will be assessed regularly on practical work that is conducted either as homework or under timed conditions in class and given feedback on your progress.

You also will be assessed regularly on technology terminology.

Discussions and presentations are a vital part of our assessment process and you will be expected to contribute to those and practical exercises.

You will review your own performance in 1:1 sessions with your tutor.

You will undertake mock examinations on each component in advance of your final exams. You will be formally examined on each component that you study.

The linear examinations are traditional, written, and are sat at the end of the second year, although you will complete an A1 assessment in this subject based on the topics covered in Year 1 to ensure progress.

Coursework in the second year is compulsory.

Entry Requirements

A Level Computer Science requires a systematic and logical approach to problem-solving. You will require five good grades at GCSE in line with general entry requirements for A Level, including English Language, with Mathematics at least a Grade 6. GCSE IT/Computer Science is not required, but a strong desire to develop skills in programming languages or previous experience is helpful.

Information & Support

We encourage all students to read widely and conduct their own research into computer systems and software development, especially those who wish to study Computer Science related courses at degree level. We will offer opportunities for you to conduct independent research and development. Programming development can take place using resources in College. The software that you will use is available as free downloads or through student license schemes.

Awarding Body: Eduqas

Meet the staff, tour the campus and find out about life as a student at one of the best colleges in the country.

What you could earn

  • IT Business Analysts, Architects and Systems Designers
  • IT User Support Technicians
  • IT Operations Technicians
  • Programmers and Software Development Professionals
  • Sales Accounts and Business Development Managers
  • Business, Research and Administrative Professionals
  • Financial Administrative Occupations
  • Elementary Security Occupations
Potential Salary


Entry Level Salary


Average Salary


Annual openings in Cornwall


Potential Salary


Entry Level Salary


Average Salary


Annual openings in Cornwall


Potential Salary


Entry Level Salary


Average Salary


Annual openings in Cornwall


Potential Salary


Entry Level Salary


Average Salary


Annual openings in Cornwall


Potential Salary


Entry Level Salary


Average Salary


Annual openings in Cornwall


Potential Salary


Entry Level Salary


Average Salary


Annual openings in Cornwall


Potential Salary


Entry Level Salary


Average Salary


Annual openings in Cornwall


Potential Salary


Entry Level Salary


Average Salary


Annual openings in Cornwall


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