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Computing Science


Mr A McGinley (PTC Technologies)

Mr E Neil

Mr M Rankin


Broad General Education

S1 pupils experience a period of Computing Science and a period of Digital Literacy designed develop their skills in these two hugely important areas required in the modern world.  All our courses are developed to allow a progression and development of their skills as their journey continues into S2, S3 and beyond.  


Senior Phase

As Learners progress into and through Senior Phase they are able to tailor their courses into areas best suited to the skills they have been developing with us since S1.  We offer progression into National courses (N3,4,5), Higher and Advanced Higher Computing Systems as well as specialist courses in Computer games Design and Cyber Security.  


Scroll down to see the topics we cover in BGE and how they offer progression into Senior Phase.  You will also find a diagram to follow the topics through each year of BGE and where the pathways can lead.



First Year 

In first year each learner will visit Computing Science for one period a week and Digital Literacy for one period a week. During the year learners will cover the following topics:

Computing Science Topics:

  • Website Development
  • Databases
  • Software Development
  • Computer Systems
  • Games Development

Digital Literacy Topics:

  • Digital Literacy
  • Spreadsheets/Data Science
  • App Development
  • Internet Safety
  • Research Skills

Second Year 

Progression into second year allows learners to build upon the skills gained within first year. Learners cover the following topics:

  • Website Development
  • Databases
  • Software Development
  • Games Development
  • Cyber Security

Third Year 

At the end of second year learners are given the opportunity to choose to continue their learning journey within Computing Science. In third year learners visit our subject three times a week. As learners reach the end of the BGE phase and prepare for the Senior Phase our S3 course is designed to promote further progression into Nationals and NPA courses. 

  • Website Development
  • Databases
  • Software Development
  • Computer Systems
  • Games Development
  • Cyber Security

At the end of S3 Learners can tailor their pathway and progress into a number of different courses to continue their journey in Computing Science.  We have developed our BGE courses to ensure each individual has been developing essential skills to progress successfully into Senior Phase.

Senior Phase 

Fourth Year

Pupils can choose from the following courses:

Computing Science (National 4/5)

Cyber Security (Level 5)

Games Design and Development (Level 5)

Fifth and Sixth Year

Pupils can choose from the following courses:

Computing Science (National 4/5, Higher and Advanced Higher)

Cyber Security (Level 5 and Level 6)

Games Design and Development (Level 5 and Level 6)

Games Design and Development 

Games Design and Development is an exciting area of the computing industry which has flourished in recent years with small games companies springing up all over Scotland. To be a part of this industry you must have enthusiasm, good communication skills and persistence.

The NPA Games Development is an excellent starting point in your career and will gain you very useful knowledge and skills. The NPA Games Development can be completed at Level 5 and Level 6; these are comparable with National 5 and Higher. Both levels consist of the same three units: Design, Media Assets & Development.


  • Within this unit you will develop an understanding of underlying concepts and principles involved in computer game planning and design. 
  • You will learn how to recognise and compare differences between gaming platforms, environments and genres. You will be introduced to the role of the games designer, and to fundamental methods used in the planning and design stages of a computer game. You will plan and design your own computer game. 
  • At Level 6, you will also investigate the hardware in gaming technology and the use graphics and sound in games. You will also examine emerging technologies in gaming and analyse how this technology will affect games and users’ expectations of games.

Media Assets

  • Within this unit you will gain an understanding of the different types of media assets required for developing a computer game, these include graphics, sound and animation. You will learn how source and produce the media assets required for your game.
  • At Level 6, you will also identify current legislation relating to the acquisition of media assets and analyse its impact on the computer games industry


  • In this unit you will develop and understanding of the final stages of computer game development. You will learn how to use Game Maker to assemble all the elements and produce a working game.

As you progress through the NPA Games Development course you will produce an electronic portfolio, which will be assessed against the performance criteria.

During the NPA Games Development course you will use a variety of software packages these include:

  • Serif DrawPlus – for creating and editing graphics and animations
  • Audacity – for creating and editing sound.
  • GameMaker 8 – this is the development environment that you will use to create your game.

Computing Science 

The world of computing science is fast paced and ever changing.  It plays an increasing part in all of our lives from the home to the work place.  There is hardly a career left that does not have an aspect of computer technology entwined in its practices.  Our course is designed to build skills through progression of our broad general education, National and Higher courses that will prepare our learners to confidently work with technology through their chosen pathways.  Our subject lends itself to many other curriculum areas and helps to prepare learners for life after school education.


  • Software Design and Development
  • Computer Systems
  • Database Design and Development
  • Web Design and Development

These courses will give you the opportunity to:

  • Develop Information Systems such as websites and databases,
  • Explore the hardware of networks and the potential security risks.
  • Look at current developments in technology and their impact on society.
  • Experience the software development process in different contexts.
  • Develop computational thinking skills

Within the Technologies Faculty Computing Science is delivered throughout both the Junior and Senior Phases of our school curriculum. In the Junior Phase Computing Science is delivered as part of S1-S2 Broad General Experiences and as a course choice for S3 BGE with a Computing Science focus. As part of the Senior Phase, Computing Science is available as a course choice for levels National 4, National 5, Higher and Advanced Higher.  Our courses are designed to allow all individual learners to develop and build their skills through progression from BGE to Senior Phase to enable confidence and achievement to a positive destination.

Cyber Security 

In Cyber Security pupils will learn about Data Security, Ethical Hacking and Digital Forensics at levels 5 and 6. These awards will help pupils make progress into IT security where there is a significant skills shortage worldwide. A main aim of the course is to produce and develop good investigators and innovative digital analysts to tackle and prevent cybercrime and cyber-enabled crime in Scotland, thereby keeping people safe and disrupting crime.

Using industry standard software and learning the necessary skills pupils develop the capability to understand the fundamental tools and techniques of Data Security, Ethical Hacking and Digital Forensics.

The specific aim of Data Security is to place it within the context of the real world. This includes the legal and ethical considerations, and the practical methods to protect personal and corporate data.

In Ethical Hacking the purpose is to develop an awareness of the knowledge and skills used by ethical and malicious hackers and how ethical hacking can help identify vulnerabilities and mitigate these threats. Additionally, pupils will understand the legislation and ethics of hacking.

Digital Forensics aim is to develop pupils’ knowledge of the principles and integrity of the digital forensics process. It develops learners’ practical skills in identifying evidential sources across a range of digital devices and media.

Throughout the course pupils are made aware of their responsibilities to ensure that they act safely in a legal, professional and ethical way. It also helps improve their cyber hygiene and resilience, and enable them to identify security vulnerabilities.

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Beeslack Community High School
Edinburgh Road
EH26 0QF


01968 678 060