Product Design A Level

Head of Department
Mr J Winrow

Why choose the subject?
Are you willing to use your imagination and creative talents? Do you enjoy making things? Are you interested in the way products look? Then A level Product Design may be for you. Product Design may be combined successfully with most other A levels. It can lead to a career in its own right or to a career in Engineering, Architecture, Interior Design, Art or Graphics. It is a good general qualification and is readily accepted by most universities. You can expect practical work and visits to enhance your studies.

Who is eligible?
This course provides direct progression from GCSE Product Design Graphic Products and Resistant Material courses but previous study of any Design and Technology or Art based subject is an advantage, not a pre-requisite. A genuine interest in this type of work, a positive attitude and a willingness to work hard are equally important.

Qualification Type: A Level only (2 year)

Specification: Year 2023/2025 Advanced Level Award Examination Board: AQA 7552

The course will strengthen your critical thinking and problem solving skills within a creative environment, enabling you to develop and make prototypes that solve real world problems, considering your own and others’ needs, wants, aspirations and values.

• You will develop intellectual curiosity of the design and manufacture of products and systems, and their impact on daily life and the wider world, making you a more discriminating purchaser
• It will help you to be creative in your approach to work and develop your sketching ability and use of digital technologies in designing and creating quality products
• You will learn about a range of materials and, components and manufacturing methods to help create functional products
• You will learn to work collaboratively to develop and refine your ideas, responding to feedback from users, peers and expert practitioners
• You will gain an insight into the creative, engineering and/or manufacturing industries and learn about the iterative design practices and strategies they use
• You will learn about important issues that effect design in the wider world such as sustainability, globalisation and inclusive design; in order to become an empathetic and successful designer who can consider wider social implications of products

Written Paper 1- Technical principles.
Written paper with a mixture of short and extended response questions. 120 marks, 30% of total A level mark 2.5 hour written paper.

Written Paper 2 Designing and making principles
Written paper with a mixture of multiple choice, short and extended response questions
• Section A: Product analysis questions based on a visual stimulus (30 marks)
• Section B: Commercial manufacture questions (50 marks)
80 marks, 20% of total A level mark 1.5 hour written examination

Non examination assessment
Written (or electronic) design portfolio and manufactured outcome. (100 marks) Students are required to undertake a single substantial design and make task. Approximately 45 hours’ work. 50% of total A level mark.

An A Level in product design develops your creative design skills and gives you the technical ability you need to use production methods and materials creatively. It also equips you with other skills that are valued by many employers, such as:
• Presentation skills • Communication skills • The ability to work to deadlines • Commercial and entrepreneurial skills • Problem-solving skills • The ability to use your initiative and work independently • Teamworking skills • Visual and spatial awareness • General and specialist IT skills, such as computer-aided design (CAD).
This course is commonly studied with:
As an A-Level subject, Product Design complements several other A-Level courses, including Maths, Art and Design, Physics and Computer Science.
Future Careers:
Fashion, engineering, architecture, information technology, product design.