Course overview

Computer Science A Level City of Bristol College

Learn programming and theory in this Computer Science A Level.

You will learn Python and cover the fundamentals of programming, data structures, algorithms, and object-oriented programme design.

In addition, you will learn the theory of computer science. You will study the internal workings of computers, right down to how data is stored using binary, whether that be numbers, text, pictures or even music.

This course is an option within our Creative, Business and Law and Science A Level pathways.

  • Creative Pathway course code: ALCREATIVE
  • Business and Law Pathway course code: ALBUS&LAW
  • Science Pathway course code: ALSCIENCE

Find out more about our A Level pathways and how to apply

Additional information

Who is this course for?

To do A Level Computer science it is not essential to have done computer science at GCSE, though it is advisable to have done some practice of programming in your own time.

The two-year course has a significant programming element and those who have no previous experience of programming often find it very challenging.

What you'll learn

As well as covering programming the course aims to promote good programming practices such as avoiding global variables, sensible variable naming, structured programming, good re-use of code through procedures and functions, and proper commenting of code.

It also covers higher-level concepts such as the social and legal impact of computers, and how to go about breaking down a big problem into individual programmable steps.

You must have at least a Grade 6 in Maths. There are several topics that require the ability to reason logically and apply mathematical and logical processes to solutions. It is likely that if you find Mathematics enjoyable and interesting then you will also like Computer Science.

Course entry requirements

To join this course you will need six GCSEs at Grade 4 (C) or above. In addition, you will need a Grade 6 (B) in Maths and ideally also in Computer Science.

How is the course delivered and assessed?

You will be assessed throughout the duration of the course via a combination of coursework, practical work, observation and presentations.

Future career and study opportunities

A Level Computer Science is naturally a strong subject to take if you wish to go on to do computer science at degree level.

Equally, there are a number of software engineering courses that have computer science as a prerequisite. After university, you can go on to numerous professions. Computer Science will lead on to robotics, artificial intelligence, machine learning, cloud computing, big data processing, networking, ethical hacking, computer game development, home automation or even teaching.

Additional costs

This course is free to anyone aged 16-18. There is no formal list of additional costs. However, if you are on a limited income, you may be eligible to receive help with these costs from our Learner Support Funding Bursary.

To keep everyone safe, we’ve reduced the number of people in our buildings at one time. Most of our courses include sessions taught at the college supported by online learning. 

Where to find us