Design & Technology

At Ratcliffe, Design and Technology is a successful and forward thinking department.

Our aims are to provide opportunities for pupils to:

  • enjoy turning ideas into reality;
  • be creative and develop thinking skills;
  • develop attitudes of curiosity, innovation, and ingenuity;
  • experience a range of different material areas.

The department is staffed by one full-time teacher, two part time teachers and one full-time Art and Design technician. The teaching staff are well qualified and experienced, providing a high level of expertise across all material areas. They also pride themselves in the setting of high standards and expectations and work tirelessly to ensure that pupils have the opportunities to achieve their full potential.

The Design and Technology Department comprises of two well-equipped workshops, which offer pupils the opportunity to fully explore design and practical activities while encompassing the principles of artistic creativity and innovation. Equipment includes machinery and hand tools to fabricate in wood metal and plastic. In addition, the department also has access to two small design studios equipped with ICT and CAD/CAM equipment, including a laser and vinyl cutter.

Academic Programme

From Year 6, all students at Ratcliffe will experience Design and Technology in the main school workshops.

In Years 7 to Year 9, Design and Technology is taught on a rotation system with Food Technology. Students will have one lesson of 65 minutes each week for approximately 14 weeks of the year. Classes are taught in mixed ability groups of around 23 students.

These initial years focus on the understanding of the design process, and the development of practical abilities and creative thinking in preparation for further studies.

Current projects are:  Year 7: Wall plaque Clock Year 8: A pair of Bookends Year 9: Beach hut money-box.


At GCSE, we follow a 2-year Edexcel course in Resistant Materials.

Resistant Material Technology covers a wide range of activities based on designing and making products that are manufactured using materials such as wood, metal and plastics.

The course allow pupils to develop a whole range of creative designing and making skills, technical knowledge, and understanding relating to resistant materials products.


In the Sixth Form, students follow a 2-Year OCR course in Product Design: Resistant Materials.

The course aims to develop an awareness of design in the world around you, combining and developing practical skills alongside a working knowledge of design theory.

At AS level, the course focuses on the research, analysis, modification and development of ideas as opposed to more traditional workshop skills. However, at A2 level, students design, develop and manufacture an innovative product documenting the process in a design portfolio.

Projects have included innovative seating, storage and display solutions.