Design and technology
Ofsted reports in design and technology and materials for schools
- Subject professional development materials: Design and technology - 10 January 2013. Ofsted publishes a number of subject surveys every year. They look at developments in a specific subject over the previous three years, based on specialist inspectors’ visits to a range of schools. This resource has been put together to help teachers in primary and secondary schools improve teaching and learning by reflecting on the main messages from the design and technology report, Meeting technological challenges?, published in March 2011.
- Meeting technological challenges? - 25 March 2011. This report looks at design and technology (D&T) provision in the curriculum. Most pupils in all the schools we visited enjoyed designing and making products, solving problems and seeing their ideas take shape. Achievement and provision in D&T were good in about two thirds of the primary schools and just under half of the secondary schools, particularly where they used up-to-date technologies and explained them accurately to pupils. However, a lack of subject-specific training for teachers undermined efforts to develop pupils’ knowledge and skills, particularly in using electronics, developing control systems and using computers for designing and making.
- Education for a technologically advanced nation: Design and Technology in schools 2004/07 - 25 June 2008. This report evaluates design and technology provision in the National Curriculum, based on focused surveys and inspection evidence from primary and secondary schools.
Inspectors visit 150 schools each year to inform Ofsted’s subject surveys in English, mathematics and science. Survey visits for other subjects are less frequent but continue to take place from time to time.
The additional guidance for subject visits is currently being updated to align with the School inspection handbook published in September 2012. In the interim, the previous version of the additional subject-specific guidance remains available for schools.
Case studies of good practice in design and technology in schools
High-quality innovation in Key Stage 3 design and technology to promote high achievement: Archbishop Holgate’s School – A Church of England Academy - 31 May 2012. This example illustrates how a school has developed its design and technology curriculum to provide a high quality and unique learning experience for students at Key Stage 3. The curriculum stimulates students’ curiosity and provides them with the essential skills and knowledge needed to live and work in a technologically advanced world. Strong links with industry ensure that students develop good understanding of the work of product designers, engineers, architects and chefs.
Raising achievement in design and technology: Turnford School - 19 January 2012. An innovative and relevant curriculum at Turnford School secured high levels of engagement and achievement in design and technology. Strong partnership links with technology research and development providers were essential. The case study includes examples of students’ work supplied by the school.
Computer-aided design and manufacture in design and technology: Ripley St Thomas Church of England High School - 19 October 2011. This secondary school integrated computer-aided design and manufacture (CAD/CAM) into their design and technology provision in a secondary school. The students use professional standard software and manufacturing equipment confidently. As a result, their vocational skills are exceptionally well advanced by the time they leave school.
Gina White is the National Adviser for Design and Technology (D&T). Gina has been an HMI for almost 10 years and the National Adviser since April 2007. Before joining Ofsted, Gina was a teacher and held several management positions in schools. She was a local authority adviser and inspector for seven years and led school development in D&T and information and communications technology (ICT).