Soham Village College

GCSE Computer Science

GCSE Computer Science

Click the logo or link below if you would like to view the full course specification from the Exam Board website.

Exam Board Qualification Specification
AQA Logo GCSE Computer Science J276
GCSE Specification (9 – 1)
Computer systems
• Systems Architecture
• Memory
• Storage
• Wired and wireless networks
• Network topologies, protocols and layers
• System security
• System software
• Ethical, legal, cultural and environmental concerns
Computer systems (01)
80 marks
1 hour and 30 minutes
Written paper (no calculators allowed)
 40% of total GCSE
Computational thinking, algorithms and programming
• Algorithms *
• Programming techniques
• Producing robust programs
• Computational logic
• Translators and facilities of languages
• Data representation
Computational thinking, algorithms and programming (02)
80 marks
1 hour and 30 minutes
Written paper
(no calculators allowed) 
 40% of total GCSE
Programming project **
• Programming techniques
• Analysis
• Design
• Development
• Testing and evaluation and conclusions
Programming project (03/04)
40 marks
Totalling 20 hours
Non-Exam Assessment (NEA) 
 20% of total GCSE

The table below is a breakdown of the units studied at GCSE and the format of the assessments.

   Year 10

Year 11




Algorithms and Programming Techniques Create an algorithm to help a taxi company calculate its fares. Programming languages 
Computer systems: hardware
Computer systems: systems software
Write programs using a low level language.
Theory Test
Iteration Write an algorithm for a computer game.
Theory Test
Python Refresher 
Non Exam Assessment: Programming Project
Coursework – 20% of GCSE


Boolean logic 
Data types and structures
Design logic circuits to solve a control problem.
Encode and decode messages with an encryption key.
Theory Test
Non Exam Assessment: Programming Project 
Coursework – 20% of GCSE
Theory Test
Searching and sorting algorithms 
Input and Output
Write an algorithm to find the top ten.
Write a program to create and manage logins.
Theory Test
System Security Ethical, legal, cultural and environmental concerns Design and code an information point.
Design and code an online test.
Theory Test


Binary and hexadecimal  
Binary representations
Write a program that will convert between different number formats.
Create a program to compress and decompress image files for a social media site.
Theory Test
Problem solving Mock Programming Project


GCSE Examination
Formal Assessment in exam halls.