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Algorithms and programming for AQA GCSE specification - residential

CP299 Face to face course

During this two day residential, you'll explore the fundamentals required for teaching algorithms and programming, aligned to the AQA 9-1 GCSE specification.

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Residential and Intensive Algorithms Computing Key stage 3 Key stage 4 CS Accelerator
Face to face course 2 days

An understanding of both algorithms and programming is vital for success in GCSE computer science. During this two-day residential you’ll learn the fundamentals of both topics, aligned to the AQA 8525 9-1 GCSE computer science specification.

During day 1 you’ll focus on representing algorithms using flowcharts and pseudocode. Students need to understand how algorithms are designed to solve a problem, and how these designs are represented to other humans. You’ll explore how to read and write your own algorithms, based on the core concepts for designing algorithms.

Day 2 will focus on Python programming, focusing primarily on the three main constructs – sequencing, selection and iteration. You’ll learn how to write code to input, process and output data, and how to manipulate data stored in variables. Using the building blocks of sequence, selection and iteration you’ll begin to understand how programs are constructed to perform a multitude of simple and more complex tasks.

This CPD package will provide you with the opportunity to upskill your subject knowledge, up to GCSE level. Completing this pathway will contribute towards recognised certification through the Computer Science Accelerator programme. You'll be supported along the way by experienced teaching professionals, among a group of your peers.

You'll participate in live face-to-face CPD, with the opportunity to access on-demand online CPD. You'll take-away ready-to-use and successful teaching approaches from experienced teachers, supported by the latest research and evidence.

Across the two days you’ll complete the following courses:

Residential information:

This is a residential course at the National STEM Learning Centre, York. Meals and overnight accommodation are included for participants for the duration of the course. Subsidies are also available for teachers from state-funded schools and colleges which can be used towards travel, supply cover, teaching equipment or further local CPD.

If participants wish stay to spend the night before the residential in York, bed and breakfast will be available at the centre’s on-site accommodation at a discounted rate of £45+VAT. Participants can email [email protected] to secure this rate, providing their course booking information and confirming the night(s) they would like to stay.

Who is it for?

This pathway is intended for teachers who have some basic knowledge of programming, either using block or text based languages. We recommend that you attend the ‘Foundation knowledge of computer science for KS3 and GCSE’ course if you’re new to programming.

Topics covered

  • Representing algorithms using flowcharts and pseudocode for the AQA specification – during this course you’ll explore how to design algorithms using the core concepts. You’ll explore how to read and write algorithms represented as flowcharts / pseudocode.
  • Python programming constructs: sequencing, selection & iteration for the AQA specification – during this course you learn how to program using the text based programming language, Python. You’ll learn how to use programming constructs sequencing, selection and iteration.

How long is this course?

You’ll complete two courses from the Computer Science Accelerator programme, totalling approximately 12 hours, split across multiple days.

Online courses are also available free of charge, these are available to complete before, alongside or after the face to face courses.

How will you learn?

Hands-on experiential learning with the collaborative support of your peers. Expert advice and instruction on the GCSE curriculum and the expectations of a computer science teacher, from experienced classroom practitioners.


By the end of this intensive CPD pathway you will be able to:

●    Learn the key building blocks of algorithms to be executed using a computer●    Represent algorithms using pseudocode and flowcharts●    Gain confidence in tracing and improving algorithms●    Develop some basic program constructs using variables, handling user input and output to the screen●    Follow the flow of a program, identifying values held in variables at different stages of execution●    Create and control indefinite loop structures in programs

Dates coming soon

Contact your local Computing Hub for more information

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

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