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KS3 computing (module 1): Creative curriculum design principles

CP247 Face to face course

Start to design a computing curriculum that supports deep learning by all students throughout KS3.

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Leadership Key stage 3 Teach secondary computing certificate
Face to face course 1 day

  • Ashton-under-Lyne 13 June 10:00—13 June 2024
  • London 18 June 09:30—18 June 2024
  • Darlington 28 June 09:00—28 June 2024
  • Exeter 3 July 09:30—3 July 2024

Curriculum design is centre stage once more, and nowhere is an effective computing curriculum more vital than in KS3.

As the first of three linked courses, this CPD builds your curriculum design and implementation capability from the ground up, meaning anyone can produce a sequenced curriculum that builds conceptual understanding and knowledge.

You’ll consider the intent of your curriculum, giving you the confidence to explain your approach to anyone who asks.

Taking a step back from the detail to look at the big picture of KS3 computing will help you prioritise the fundamentals of the subject.

You’ll take into account the prior learning of students entering KS3 and effectively manage variations, before considering what they need to know by the end of the key stage and the best ways to help them get there.

This course is module 1 of a collection of 3 courses, use the links for more information on the other two modules:

Who is it for?

Subject leaders of computing and teachers with responsibility for the KS3 computing curriculum.

Topics covered

Curriculum design principles – learn about best practice in modern curriculum design, developing a vision for your curriculum that fits into your school. Consider the strengths of your current provision, and the opportunities to make improvements.

Computing in primary schools and transition – evaluate the effectiveness of present arrangements for children transitioning to secondary school, and the computing knowledge they might bring with them. Consider a variety of low-effort ways to improve transition that will help students make a flying start and maintain their enthusiasm for computing.

Establishing the aims of the KS3 computing curriculum – consider the different roles that the curriculum plays, and the reasons why it might differ between schools in different contexts. Develop a curriculum intent statement that stakeholders can understand, and develop your view of what an impactful curriculum might look like.

Subject knowledge – define what lies at the heart of the computing curriculum, and what can help young people see its relevance and beauty. Plan to develop, in a considered way, the knowledge of your learners leading to success and enjoyment, and readiness for further study. Recognise the key ideas and knowledge that opens up the subject to young people, and deliberately plan to avoid misconceptions.

How long is this course?

This is a one-day, face-to-face course which consists of approx. six hours of teaching time.

How will you learn?

You’ll engage with active learning in groups including direct instruction, hands-on activities and challenge-based learning.


By the end of this course you will be able to:

  • articulate the intent of the KS3 curriculum in your school 
  • begin the curriculum design process with confidence, informed by best practice
  • define the domain of knowledge to be learned by all students in KS3 computing
  • enrich the core curriculum, telling a bigger story to develop passion for computing among young people. 

This course is part of Teach secondary computing

Teach secondary computing

Our nationally recognised qualification will give you confidence to take your computing teaching to the next level and to apply those skills in the classroom.

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This course is from the National Centre for Computing Education and is delivered by STEM Learning.

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