Art and Design : 3D Product Design
What is the exam board and specification?
The exam board is AQA.
Three-dimensional design is the designing or making of functional and aesthetic products and involves designing and making for the real world. It may take the form of prototyping and modelling, be functional or technical but all outcomes will consider environments and purpose, drawing upon intellectual, creative and practical skills.
During this course, you will explore multiple construction methods using different materials and techniques. Students will combine both practical and technological skills with creative thinking to design and make useful, real products and systems that meet the allocated theme. Increasingly, companies are looking for employees to be competent in design, presentation and the use of current technologies as well as having an awareness of future technological developments and their impact. This course teaches students to develop all of these skills using their design to improve quality of life and outcomes.
What will you study?
This course combines both theoretical knowledge and hands-on practice. Students will develop a portfolio of work that includes a sustained project in response to a brief; this must include evidence of research, the development of ideas and meaningful links with critical and contextual sources. Further work results from activities such as experiments, skills-based workshops, mini-projects, responses to museum or site visits and independent study. All final outcomes will be 3D; however, your preparatory work will contain work in other media and materials. You will need to produce drawings for both research and for your designs.
Component 1 (Coursework) consists of short, focused workshops that aim to develop skills, techniques and use of a wide range of materials. You will also respond to and develop sustained, independent projects based on a range of themes.
Component 2 (Exam) consists of a paper externally set by the exam board in January, this takes a similar structure to your coursework, building your preparation work over the course of 7 – 10 weeks and ending with a 10-hour practical exam, where you will create your final piece in response to the set paper.
How will you be assessed?
The coursework portfolio is worth 60% of your overall grade and is developed over the course of the first year and will include: research, studies of designers and craftspeople, design movements, observational studies, development of ideas, samples and maquettes.
The externally set paper is worth 40% of your final grade. All the work is marked and assessed by your teacher and then externally moderated by the exam board. You can find the marking criteria and weighting that is applied to all work here.
All units of work are marked under four assessment objects – development, experimentation, recording ideas and presenting a final piece. Written annotation and drawing for purpose must be explicitly evidenced in both component 1 and 2.
What qualities do I need to be successful in the subject?
You need to be passionate and dedicated, successful outcomes take time. You need to enjoy solving problems and have an eye for visual communication, you will need to be able to develop practical and logical solutions to projects and be able to record your creative journey.
What future opportunities can I have with this subject?
There are opportunities for further study in Architecture, Furniture design, Interior design, Product design, Model making and Theatre or Film set design. Britain’s economic prospects are based on high-value sectors such as engineering, advanced manufacturing, design and creative industries. They are areas where Britain is still highly competitive, and Design and Technology plays a key role in providing the skills needed to maintain this level. In 2019 alone the creative industries job market increased by 2.9% in contrast to the 1.1% increase in jobs across the economy as a whole.
Who should I contact for further information?
A comparison of Design Technology and 3D product design can be seen here