Product Design, Engineering and Construction

Product Design (KS3), Design Technology and Engineering

Head of Subject: Mr D Barton


Throughout our department we want to allow the students to be creative and innovative. We want them to learn new skills with a range of tools and materials, traditional and modern, in a controlled and safe environment and understand that making mistakes is a part of the journey and that we learn by trying and doing. Our vision is to provide students with an awareness of real and relevant problems, within a variety of contexts, considering their own and others’ needs, wants and values. We aim to ensure the students leave with technical and practical competencies as well as the wider soft skills that can be transferred to everyday life.


The Design Technology, Engineering and Construction department at Hawkley Hall High School aim to provide the knowledge, understanding and skills required to undertake an iterative design process of exploring, creating through making and evaluating which prepares them for the world they live in.
By studying design and technology, and with the help of dedicated teaching environments, manufacturing equipment, and specialist instruction students can acquire the tools to make a positive impact on the world around them and can help them boost their own confidences.
They learn techniques for creating and manufacturing products and systems, how to be innovative and to effectively use a variety of resources - both traditional and digital - to enhance their environment and everyday lives. Through this, they can gain the skill set needed to make a difference in their world.
Students will use a range of different tools and equipment across different discipline areas to learn new competences relevant to each subject area and content. The students gain expertise in a wide range of topics and draw upon multi subject disciplines including mathematics, science, engineering and computing. Students are encouraged to be daring and demonstrate resourcefulness, innovation and creativity while considering their own and others’ needs, wants and values. By studying Design and Technology, Engineering and Construction from the past and present, students gain a deeper insight into its influence on everyday life and the world around them. As students’ progress to KS4 they choose an area within the department to study. In their chosen area, each subject allows for deeper study of the world they live in, potential career opportunities and with the skills developed at KS3 the confidence to task new and safe risks.

Learning Journey

KS3 Design Technology Learning Journey

Curriculum Description

In Key Stage 3 students are taught Product Design in mixed ability classes for 1 hour per week. Home learning tasks are set via show my homework and assessments are completed to track and monitor the progress of students. Feedback is provided to students in terms of the skills they are working towards or have mastered, targets for further improvements are shared with students and students then have the chance to respond to their feedback.

At Key Stage 4 there are two choices for student to continue their studies in Design and Technology to GCSE level.

  • GCSE Engineering (AQA Grade 9-1)
  • GCSE Design Technology (AQA Grade 9-1)

Students that opt to take one of these subjects will have 3 hours a week and are working towards one GCSE qualification. They study the following GCSE specifications:

  • GCSE Design Technology - AQA Design and Technology (8552)
  • GCSE Engineering – AQA Design and Technology: Engineering (Single Award) (8852)

Students will be awarded a grade 9-1 following their GCSE examinations in the summer of Year 11, this is a combination of their written exam and practical coursework. Deadlines are set termly, revision homework’s are set each week.

Throughout their time at studying Design Technology at Hawkley Hall, students are taught the following key skills:

  • How to identify, investigate and outline design possibilities to address needs and wants
  • How to design and make prototypes that are fit for purpose
  • How to analyse and evaluate products
  • How to make design decisions and outcomes, including for prototypes made by themselves and others
  • How to understand the wider issues in design technology
  • How to demonstrate and apply knowledge and understanding of the technical principles required in design technology
  • Design and making principles including the use of a range of different tools and equipment

The topics students cover throughout Key Stage 3 are outlined in the table below:

Project 1 Project 2
Year 7 Block Bot – Wood working practical Graphic Design – Drawing skills and 3D CAD Design
Year 8 Vambit – Electronics and CAD Design for others – Research, practical, teamwork and graphics
Year 9 Innovation project – Design, make,  and research (Mini GSCE Style project) Pewter Keyring – Metal working practical, packaging and graphics

KS4 – Year 10 and Year 11

Students will cover a range of topics linked to the GCSE Specifications. These topics will be expanded upon and the pupils will complete a range of projects to help ensure they understand the key information.

In Engineering pupils will cover the following topics:

  • Designing and communicating
  • Manufacturing an Engineering Product
  • Understanding engineered products
  • Application of New Technologies
  • Environmental and Sustainability issues
  • Health and safety

In Design and Technology pupils will cover the following topics:

  • Materials and components
  • Classification and working properties of materials
  • Design and market influences
  • Evolution of design
  • Communication and representation of ideas
  • Design in practice
  • Design methodology
  • Design in the human context
  • Ethical, Environmental and Sustainability issues
  • Health and safety
  • Product Manufacturing

In Year 11 pupils will complete their GCSE Controlled Assessment task. This is currently worth 40% of their total GCSE mark (For Engineering and Design and Technology)

Pupils will undertake a single design and make activity which is selected from a range of exam board-set tasks.

Pupils will submit a 3-dimensional outcome and a concise design folder and/or appropriate ICT evidence. The design folder should consist of approximately 20 pages of A3 paper or equivalent A4 paper or the ICT equivalent. It is expected that pupils should spend approximately 35 hours (approx) on this activity

Additional Information

Design and Technology and Engineering offer an extensive range of extra-curricular provision, including:

  • Intervention – Every Wednesday from 3pm to 5:30pm for Year 11 pupils to complete controlled assessment and catch up and missed pieces of coursework
  • Revision sessions – Every Wednesday from 3pm to 5:30pm and one lunch time session each week from 12:15pm – 1pm or pupils in Key Stage 4
  • Homework support – Every night from 3pm and each dinner time from 12:30pm for pupils in Key Stages 3 and 4
  • Trips – Year 10 reward trip to Jaguar Land Rover and Year 9 University of Manchester Teen Tech event for prospective Engineering or Product Design pupils