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ICT at Thornhill CollegeICT is an integral part of the curriculum at Thornhill College and involves all pupils and teachers.

We recognise that all pupils have an ICT entitlement and a right to be confident users of modern technology.  This will enable full participation in school and community life and provide them with the necessary skills for college and university.

Our ICT curriculum is continually reviewed so that it reflects all the main current developments including new teaching and learning approaches and new assessment opportunities.

Through challenging pupil-centred activities, collaborative learning, and innovative use of ICT we hope to inspire our students to be creative, responsible and effective users of technology.

KS3 ICT Overview

Our approach at KS3 has three main elements:

  • Discrete ICT Skills classes in Years 8 and 10
  • Programming/Coding classes in Year 9
  • Cross-curricular ICT use in all KS3 subjects to support the    
  • CCEA Using ICT (UICT) scheme

Discrete ICT Skills Classes

One lesson per week in Years 8 and 10 to allow the pupils to learn how to use ICT safely and effectively. The skills incorporate:

  • using the latest software packages;
  • e-safety;
  • an introduction to programming;
  • building a personal e-portfolio.


All pupils in Year 9 have one lesson each week to learn basic computer programming techniques. The pupils are introduced tom concepts such as:

  • functions;
  • parameters;
  • variables;
  • conditional statements;
  • iteration loops;
  • etc.

The programming environments used are Scratch and JavaScript.

Cross-Curricular ICT

All pupils in Year 10 are entered for the CCEA KS3 ICT Accreditation Scheme.

The scheme supports the objectives of the Northern Ireland Curriculum and also allows us to implement the cross-curricular skill of Using ICT (UICT).

It also provides us with the opportunity to prepare pupils for the assessment of UICT.

The scheme incorporates the principle of ICT skills being embedded in learning and teaching across the KS3 curriculum. It is designed to support the pupils with opportunities to acquire and develop knowledge, skills and understanding of Using ICT and to apply these across all Areas of Learning. The focus is on using the skills.

The pupils complete work within subjects in the following skill areas (CCEA "Desirable Features"):

  • Presentation
  • Working with Sound
  • Researching
  • Using Modelling
  • Online Collaboration
  • Desktop Publishing

Students spend much of their time working on assignments and projects.The practical approach encouraged throughout all units will enable candidates to develop the skills, knowledge, and understanding of practices and techniques required to use ICT most effectively in everyday life.

The pupils also learn about safe online practices as part of the pastoral programme at KS3.

In Year 10 the pupils compile a portfolio of work which is used to gain certification as part of the CCEA KS3 Assessment scheme.


ICT at Thornhill CollegeThe influence of ICT is rapidly expanding and transforming the way people live, work and learn. This exciting new course allows you opportunities to acquire and apply creative and technical skills, and to develop knowledge and understanding of ICT in a range of contexts.

Students who take this course should:

  • like working with computers and other related devices;
  • enjoy practical work;
  • have an in interest in learning about how computers are used by people in their everyday lives.

Course Content

Module 1 – Tools & Applications – 30%                                                           
Controlled Assessment tasks (Yr 11)

Using database, spreadsheet and presentation packages, the students are required to complete a series of prescribed coursework tasks.

Module 2 – Multimedia & Games Technology – 30%                                     
Controlled Assessment tasks (Yr 12)

This module involves the design & creation of your own website, hosting features like videos and the creation of a computer game.

Module 3 – Knowledge of ICT components – 40%                                       
Examination (Yr 12)

This sees the pupils learning about ICT systems, how they work and how they are applied to everyday life.


The influence of ICT is rapidly expanding and transforming the way people live, work and learn. This exciting new course allows you to apply creative and technical skills, and to develop knowledge and understanding of ICT in a range of contexts.


Entrance Requirements

There are no specific subjects required, though those students who have taken GCSE ICT would be at an advantage. It is a good choice for those who enjoy task-based work and have a record of completing good quality work on time.


Course Content

AS Level

Unit AS 1: Components of ICT (60% of AS)

This will be assessed through a 2 hour written examination

Unit AS 2: Developing ICT Solutions (40% of AS)

 Two separate coursework tasks:

Data Processing (20%) – creating a data processing system for a local business.

Multimedia (20%) – creating a web site for a local business

A2 Level

Unit A2 1: Information Systems (60% of A2)

This will be assessed through a 2 hour written examination.

Unit A2 2: Approaches to System Development (40% of A2)

Candidates will produce a relational database solution, using a wide range of advanced features and functionalities.


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