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Faculty of Science and Technology

Faculty Leader: Mr G Sinkowski

This Faculty encompasses Science, Social Sciences and Technology. The aim of the Faculty is to build on the expertise within individual subject areas to ensure that Monmouth Comprehensive School is a beacon for STEM Education (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) on a national level.

STEM subjects are integral to the UK’s success, yet have been taught independent of each other for generations. Our vision is that students’ learning at Monmouth Comprehensive School will benefit hugely from a collaboration of subject areas and that this will prepare many of them for rich and varied career pathways within STEM subjects. Our students will have the STEM knowledge and skills they need to be an informed citizen in an increasingly scientific and technological society.

SCIENCE DEPARTMENT

Acting Subject Leader for Science: Mr J Le Boeuf

With a team of 15 highly qualified specialist teachers supported by two lab technicians, we are a well resourced Department with access to a number of computers and all laboratories and classrooms are fitted with computer projectors.

Our varied curriculum across the Department allows students to follow science pathways which suit their aptitudes, interests and aspirations. We allow students to discover new ideas and concepts themselves through practical experience, discussion or research. We aim to create a lifelong interest in all things scientific and allow our young people to be able to access scientific debate and understand how science affects their everyday lives.

Skills are developed which not only produce scientists of the future but will be useful in all walks of life and further study.

KEY STAGE 3

Science at Key Stage 3 is designed to cover all aspects of the National Curriculum as well as to promote the thinking and investigative skills that will be essential later in life. Schemes of Work are designed to be hands on and encourage discovery with students engaging in a wide variety of activities to support their learning. In Years 7 and 8, students are taught in broad ability groups. Students will be developing many key learning skills through relevant, thought provoking scientific contexts. In Year 9, students are taught the core Science concepts and skills by one teacher, ensuring they are developed and honed, ready for the demands of GCSE study.

Science Club is a popular after school activity during which students can work towards their Crest and STEM Science Awards, as well as having lots of fun.

KEY STAGE 4

We have a number of Science pathways at KS4, catering for the needs of citizens of the 21st Century. Students may follow a double or triple award pathway at KS4. Many of our students will study a GCSE Science course that teaches the core scientific principles and skills needed to understand the world around them and to engage in public debate about future scientific innovations. All students will study GCSE courses from the WJEC Science Suite of qualifications. They will be graded on the A*-G scale.

IN THE SIXTH FORM

We have highly qualified specialist teachers in all three A Level Science subjects attracting a large number of students year on year. Our triple award GCSE courses provide excellent preparation for the AS study and many students take more than one Science subject and go on to study further at University.

SOCIAL SCIENCES DEPARTMENT

Subject Leader:  Mrs D Gaylard

The innovative creation of a Social Science Department at Monmouth Comprehensive is indicative of the school’s commitment to supporting students in the acquisition of skills for life. An enthusiastic team of subject specialists can offer students expert input into the opportunity to study Health and Social Care at Key Stage 4 creating pathways to qualifications at Key Stage 5 in Health and Social Care, and Psychology.

The range of skills offered by Social Sciences is extensive and the methods of teaching diverse. All students are encouraged to develop practical, social and academic skills that will improve their knowledge and understanding of both the individual and society and provide them with a solid foundation for their future.

GCSE Health and Social Care, and Childcare (HSCCC)

This course equips learners with knowledge, understanding and skills related to the development and care of individuals through life from conception and infancy to later adulthood. It is a course developed in partnership with the NHS and City and Guilds to deliver a robust programme of study.

The Single Award (1 GCSE) has 2 units: Unit 1: Human growth, development and well-being (Written examination) and Unit 2: Promoting and maintaining health and well-being (Nonexam assessment). Learners have opportunities to investigate care issues and topics of their own choice in the coursework.

This GCSE supports learners in continuing study in related Level 3 courses and entering career choices related to health and social care as well as providing excellent transferable skills across the curriculum.

By studying Health and Social Care, and Childcare learners are able to:

  • develop and apply knowledge, understanding and skills to contemporary issues in a range of health and social care, and childcare contexts
  • actively engage in the study of health and social care, and childcare to develop as effective and independent learners, and as critical and reflective thinkers with enquiring minds
  • appreciate a range of perspectives on the impacts of health and social care, and childcare services on wider society
  • consider how health and social care, and childcare practice should be ethical and support a sustainable health and care system
  • develop and apply skills relevant to health and social care, and childcare including using and interpreting data
  • develop an awareness of career pathways available within the health and social care, and childcare sector.

GCSE Psychology

Psychology is the study of the mind and human behaviour and explanations cover a range of approaches to explain behaviour such as social, biological and cognitive. The emphasis on this course will be to learn through practical experience and students will spend time investigating, analysing data, evaluating findings and writing reports.

Many of the approaches covered by GCSE Psychology are also considered in greater depth at A Level and the course will help students to make an informed decision about the study of Psychology at a higher level. Psychology is a very versatile subject that can be combined equally well with Sciences, PE, Business Studies, Geography, English and Drama.

It is a valuable subject in the world of Business and Law but students of Psychology can also specialise as Educational, Sport or Clinical Psychologists. It also supports the study of Health and Social Care and is useful for students considering careers in Social Work,Teaching, Nursing or the Police.

You do not have to study Psychology at GCSE to be able to take an A Level in the subject and many students successfully combine Psychology with both Science and Humanities based courses in the Sixth Form.

IN THE SIXTH FORM

Health and Social Care Suite

Students do not need to have completed a Social Science course at Key Stage 4 in order to access the HSC suite in KS5, which includes A level and Certificate/Diploma pathways.

AS/A2 Level Health and Social Care, and Childcare is suitable for students who are interested in learning about the development and care of individuals throughout the life span from conception to later adulthood. The qualification provides a suitable foundation for further study of health and social care through a range of higher education courses, or into employment.

Health and Social Care: Principles and Contexts Certificate/Diploma is suitable for students who want to develop a breadth and depth of knowledge related to the Health and Social Care sector. The qualification provides a suitable foundation for further study of health and social care through a range of higher education courses, or into employment. During Y13, Diploma students participate in work experience placements, amounting to 60 hours and 40 hours of sector engagement though visits to settings and guest speakers.

Following this wide-ranging and stimulating suite, students will be able to uncover all the aspects of health and social care that make this a fulfilling and motivating subject. Opportunities to discuss debate, observe and explore will be created and students will acquire skills and knowledge, which are transferable and help to meet future changes at home and at work. This provides a good basis for progression to ‘people related’ careers. With further training or study, students follow careers including nursing, social work, residential care management, nursery practitioners, paramedics, midwifery, teaching and the police.

GCE AS/A2 Psychology

This popular and successful course offers students the chance to underpin knowledge gained at Key Stage 4 with a deeper theoretical understanding of the human mind and behaviour. Through a range of resources and a variety of teaching methods, students are encouraged to develop their skills of accurate description and critical analysis of theories and studies. The course also further develops practical skills in gathering, analysing and recording data through the student’s own psychological research. Study of Psychology at A Level engages students in fundamental psychological theory while also relating theory to current issues such as ethics, eyewitness testimony, the treatment of children and eating disorders.

Many students go on to study psychology at university but the subject has also supported students undertaking degrees in law, medicine and more vocational courses in social work, counselling and teaching.

LAW

A Level Law provides students with a fascinating insight into the UK legal system.

Students will develop a comprehensive understanding of the role of law in today’s society, alongside an awareness of the rights and responsibilities of individuals and how this applies to their lives. This A Level provides an overview of Criminal Law, Human Rights Law and Tort principles, as well as equipping students with the legal skills required for progression to a Law degree or to enter employment.

There are many benefits of studying A Level Law. It links all aspects of society. It helps students develop a range of transferable skills: analytical skills, attention to detail, logical thinking, research skills, essay writing skills and advocacy skills.

This is an Exam only course.

AS

Unit 1
The Nature of Law and the Welsh and English Legal Systems (Written examination: 1 hour 45 minutes)

Unit 2
The Law of Tort (Written examination: 1 hour 30 minutes)

A2

Unit 3
The Practice of Substantive Law (Written examination: 1 hour 45 minutes)

Unit 4
Substantive Law Perspectives (Written examination: 2 hours)

DESIGN & TECHNOLOGY DEPARTMENT

Subject Leader: Mr P Bland

The Design & Technology Department aims to create an environment that provides exciting stimuli for boys and girls of all ages, abilities and cultures, giving a broad and balanced approach to Design and Technology with a special attention to “hands on” experience across a wide range of activities.

Projects undertaken take into account the wide variety of interests that students may have and enable them to learn about and use a process in which they need to identify, design, make and evaluate, as well as acquiring knowledge of design methods, experience of materials and techniques and an awareness of technological concepts. The students should develop a sound understanding of safety requirements as an integral part of all Design & Technology activities. They should also develop an awareness of the social implications of Design & Technology, perceptual sensitivity, aesthetic judgement and the ability to design functionally for a variety of situations.

The approach to Design & Technology in the school integrates all parts of the subject and makes the student aware that there is not always one correct answer. Open mindedness is encouraged and divergence of thought sought. It would be hoped that the Design & Technology process would encourage and foster in students an independence of thought and action.

The Department consists of well-equipped learning environments including two light workshops, a construction workshop, theory suite, textiles room and two food technology rooms, one with a more commercial set-up.

KEY STAGE 3

At Year 7 we follow a skill based learning programme incorporating projects that will introduce and develop skills such as finding out and reporting, problem solving, teamwork and communication.

The Food and Textile projects included in Years 8 and 9 effectively combine theoretical and practical tasks that encourage students to encompass these fundamental skills throughout the design process.

In Textiles Technology, students are taught to embellish fabrics through a variety of mediums such as dyeing methods, appliqué and CAD/ CAM. These are combined with a range of sewing styles to produce quality and original outcomes and products.

In Food Technology, students are taught to develop their individual capabilities, knowledge and understanding through focused practical tasks, product analysis activities and design and make assignments. The students will have the opportunity to take part in a number of projects, these will focus on healthy eating, multicultural foods and designing and making their own products that meet a variety of client and customer needs.

As they progress through, the students continue to develop Design & Technology capability by combining designing and making skills with knowledge and understanding. They begin to study existing products to see how others have solved similar problems.

Throughout Key Stage 3, students are taught techniques for exploring and developing ideas including sketching and rendering, annotated drawings, 3D mock ups and computer simulation Sometimes the students work on their own, sometimes in pairs and, on occasions, as a member of a team. They will use aspects of mathematics, science and art.

KEY STAGE 4

In Design and Technology, a range of courses allow students to study an area of technology in depth. The focus areas offered are WJEC

(a) Product Design

(b) Textiles

These are taken as a full GCSE Course.

Each course has a two hour written examination worth 50% of the overall grade with the remaining 50% consisting of the NEA. This will involve students producing an individual design and make project in which they are required to research a design context, generate a number of iterations and manufacture a solution which best satisfies the requirements they have identified. Evaluation of their ideas and research, materials, production techniques and their own performance is an important and integral part of each project. Both courses are taught through a range of theory and practical tasks with an emphasis on learning through experience and consolidating knowledge through exam style questions.

In Design and Technology, a range of courses allow students to study an area of technology in depth. The focus areas offered are WJEC

(a) Product Design

(b) Textiles

These are taken as a full GCSE Course.

Each course has a two hour written examination worth 50% of the overall grade with the remaining 50% consisting of the NEA. This will involve students producing an individual design and make project in which they are required to research a design context, generate a number of iterations and manufacture a solution which best satisfies the requirements they have identified. Evaluation of their ideas and research, materials, production techniques and their own performance is an important and integral part of each project. Both courses are taught through a range of theory and practical tasks with an emphasis on learning through experience and consolidating knowledge through exam style questions.

Hospitality and Catering - Technical Award

Aims of the course

This is an exciting course from Eduqas (WJEC) offering a level 1/2 qualification in Hospitality and Catering. Learners will gain an overview of the hospitality and catering industry and the type of job roles that may be available to assist them in making choices about progression. It will also equip learners with the knowledge, understanding and skills required to cook and prepare food. It will also allow them to apply the principles of nutrition, sustainability and healthy eating.

Following this qualification will encourage learners to cook and enable them to make informed decisions about food, nutrition and budgeting to allow them to be able to feed themselves and others affordably and nutritiously, now and in later life. It will also allow students to explore sustainability issues related to food issues, including seasonality, food miles and availability, Fairtrade and freedom foods.

Course Content

The course will be made up of the following modules;

  • Hospitality in catering in context. You will investigate and learn how the hospitality service operates, learn about the environment in which operators work and visit local hotels to help visualise the services offered
  • Investigate food hygiene, including completing a basic food hygiene qualification
  • Principles of nutrition, diet and good health. You will be looking at the role of the main nutrients in the diet, their sources, function and deficiency disease
  • Where food comes from and food related sustainability issues
  • Cooking and food preparation

Assessment

Eduqas

WJEC Hospitality & Catering Level 1/2

Unit 1
The Hospitality and Catering Industry

External assessment
Written examination 90 minutes

40% of qualification

Unit 2
Hospitality and Catering in Action

Internal assessment
External modification; Non-Examination Assessment

Research, prepare, cook and present dishes.
9 hours (including 4 hour practical assessment)

60% of qualification

Beyond Technical Award

Successful completion of this qualification could support entry to qualifications that develop specific skills for work in hospitality and catering such as:

  • Level 2 Diploma in Professional Cookery or Hospitality and Catering Principles (professional cookery)
  • WJEC Level 3 Food, Science and Nutrition
  • GCE in Home Economics/Design and Technology (Food Technology)
  • Level 3 Diploma in Hospitality and Tourism Management (VRQ)
  • Level 3 Diploma in Hospitality, Supervision and Leadership principles (QCF)
  • Level 3 Certificate in Hospitality and Catering Principles (professional cookery)
  • Level 3 Award in Practical Food Safety Supervision for Catering (QCF)

This course can also lead to careers in Environmental Health, Childcare, Dietician and Nutrition, Food Industry Nutritionist and New Product Development.

ENGINEERING

The Department offers a BTEC L2 Certificate in Engineering qualification relevant to students wishing to pursue a career in engineering, which will complement their studies in science and mathematics.

This qualification is a nationally recognised work-related course that is broadly equivalent to one GCSE grade A*-C. It consists of the study of two mandatory units including an online examination and one optional unit based on engineering, chosen to give students the most relevant skills for employment in the area.

The optional unit involves some practical work such as making engineered products by cutting, shaping and joining materials in the workshops, learning how to apply mathematics and physics to engineering.

Issues and ideas will be explored that make students consider factors such as the appearance and quality of a product, how it is produced safely and to be environmentally friendly, the part that new technologies have to play in engineering and manufacturing and the effects they all have on society.

CONSTRUCTION

We also offer WJEC Level 1/2 Award in Constructing the Built Environment which offers a learning experience that focuses applied learning, such as acquiring and applying knowledge, skills and understanding through relevant and purposeful tasks set in sector or subject contexts that have many of the characteristics of real work.

It is also the means by which learners are enthused, engaged and motivated to study how buildings are constructed. The applied purpose provides the opportunity for authentic work related learning, but more than this, it will require learners to consider how the use and application of their learning impacts on individuals, employers, society and the environment. The WJEC Level 1/2 Award in Constructing the Built Environment is assessed through a combination of internal and external assessment:

Unit 1
Safety and security in construction is externally assessed. This is an online assessment which is 60 minutes long.

Unit 2
Practical construction skills is internally assessed, through students demonstrating their practical skills for given tasks.

Unit 3
Planning construction projects will be internally assessed where students will be required to demonstrate their planning skills for a given context in the form of a detailed written assignment.

IN THE SIXTH FORM

The WJEC AS and Full A Level Product Design Course gives students the opportunity to further develop their skills in designing and making which were gained through the study of any one of the three Design and Technology options at GCSE.

Both courses are essentially about identifying and solving real problems, with students able to work in a wide range of contexts relating to their personal interests or intended careers.

In studying Design and Technology, students will develop the transferable skills of analysis, research, and evaluation. The high degree of coursework develops the ability to work independently through a tutorial system. The case-study gives an opportunity for candidates to look in depth at a possible career area or study design in its broadest sense.

BTEC L3 Extended Certificate in Engineering, broadly equivalent to one GCE A Level, is offered to students wishing to extend their GCE AS and A Level studies towards the area of employment that they wish to enter. It consists of studies in two mandatory units plus four further optional units, chosen for the most relevant skills and build upon many of the skills studies in the BTEC Extended Certificate