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St John the Baptist’s College, Portadown

Key Stage 4 Business and ICT

We are continually developing and expanding our Business and ICT department. Within the department this year there are two members of staff Mrs Towe and Miss Boden.

Within the department we are offering 4 GCSE or equivalent courses- BTEC ICT, BTEC Business Studies, GCSE Digital Technology and GCSE Business and Communication Systems.


The Pearson BTEC Level 1/Level 2 First Award in Information and Creative Technology has been designed primarily for young people aged 14 to 19 who may wish to explore a vocational route throughout Key Stage 4, but it is also suitable for other learners who want a vocationally focused introduction to this area of study.

It has been developed to:

  • inspire and enthuse learners to become technology savvy – producers of technology products and systems and not just consumers
  • give learners the opportunity to gain a broad understanding and knowledge of the Information Technology sector and some aspects of the creative industries e.g. electronic publishing or multimedia production
  • allow for a flexible choice of units to meet the needs of learners with different interests and inclinations by using different pathways
  • give learners a more focused understanding of Information and Creative Technology through the selection of optional specialist units
  • explore the fundamentals of technology and gain the practical skills, knowledge and understanding to design, make and review:

- information technology systems and products, e.g. a relational database

- creative technology products, e.g. a digital animation

-products that combine information technology and creative technology, e.g. a website

This qualification is taught over 120 guided learning hours (GLH). It has mandatory and optional specialist units.

Learners must complete Unit 1 and Unit 3 and a choice of optional units to reach a total of 120 GLH.

This BTEC First Award has units that your centre assesses (internal) and units that Pearson sets and marks (external). 25 per cent of the qualification that is externally assessed.

BTEC Business Studies

This course allows you to study the world of business, giving you the opportunity to develop knowledge and technical skills in a practical learning environment. You will examine the roles and responsibilities of setting up a new business and its financial management. You will also develop key skills, such as analysis and review of key financial statements.

The qualification is 120 GLH, which is the same size and level as a GCSE and is aimed at everyone who wants to find out more about business.

You will study three mandatory units, covering key aspects that underpin all business and the development of business models:

Mandatory units

  • Unit 1: Introduction to Business
  • Unit 2: Finance for Business (External)
  • Unit 3: Enterprise in the Business World (Synoptic)

You will choose a further unit from three optional units, covering marketing, customer services, and business recruitment:

Optional units

  • Unit 4: Promoting a Brand
  • Unit 5: Principles of Customer Service
  • Unit 6: Recruitment, Selection and Employment.

You will carry out tasks/assignments throughout the course. Your teacher will mark these, and so you will receive feedback as to how you are getting on.

Unit 2 is externally assessed via a test set and marked by Pearson.

Digital Technology

The CCEA GCSE Digital Technology specification is unique in the UK. Students choose either Route A: Multimedia or Route B: Programming. Based on this, the qualification they achieve is either GCSE Digital Technology (Multimedia) or GCSE Digital Technology (Programming).

Students acquire and apply knowledge and understanding of digital technology in a variety of contexts. They also develop creative and practical digital technology skills, either using a range of generic software or in an object-oriented environment. They explore the legal, social, economic, ethical and environmental impact of digital technology. This qualification also helps them to develop transferable skills such as creative problem-solving and teamwork.

This qualification builds on the knowledge, understanding and skills developed through the Cross-Curricular Skill of Using ICT.

This specification is unitised, so it’s possible to take part of the assessment at the end of the first year of study.

The specification has five units:

  • Unit 1: Digital Technology
  • Unit 2: Digital Authoring Concepts
  • Unit 3: Digital Authoring Practice
  • Unit 4: Digital Development Concepts
  • Unit 5: Digital Development Practice.

Unit 1 is compulsory. Students then complete Units 2 and 3 (Route A).


Business and Communication Systems

The CCEA GCSE Business and Communication Systems specification introduces students to the business world. They also explore the changing role of digital technology in business today.

Students learn about file management and applications such as word processing, spreadsheets, databases, web authoring, web browsing, email and presentation software. They also study types of business, recruitment, selection, training, marketing, the role of stakeholders and customers, and how best to communicate a message.

Students then have an opportunity to connect all they have learned to plan and develop a digital solution for a business.

A qualification in Business and Communication Systems could lead to further study or a career in business, digital technology or ICT.

Assessment is through one computer-based exam worth 40% of the final mark, one written exam worth 35% and a controlled assessment unit worth 25%.

This specification is unitised, so it’s possible to take part of the assessment at the end of the first year of study.

This qualification builds on the knowledge, understanding and skills developed through the Learning for Life and Work Area of Learning and the Cross-Curricular Skill of Using ICT.

The specification has three units:

  • Unit 1: Software Applications for Business
  • Unit 2: The Business Environment
  • Unit 3: Developing Digital Solutions

Aims of Department



11th Oct 2018
Pupils from 10M have started their Life Skills Programme with Joanne and Lauren from...
4th Oct 2018
10M have been learning how to use a defibrillator with Mr. McAleenan from the Bushcraft...
24th May 2018
Pupils attended an interactive Art Exhibition and completed a workshop in the Millennium...
20th Apr 2018
Pupils in the Senior LSC enjoying themselves and completing work on percentages of...
29th Mar 2018
Pupils in the Junior LSC enjoying their last day before Easter! They created Easter...
9th Mar 2018
The Junior LSC spent the afternoon working on their team building skills! They had...
1st Mar 2018
Many thanks to Debbie Long for visiting our Learning Support Centre this week to...
5th Jan 2018
The Junior LSC learned how to solve puzzles through the use of programming in their...