Common Time 2019

Design and Technology

Winchester Design Technology
Winchester Design Technology
The battery-operated racing car


Like no other subject, Design Technology (DT) teaches pupils to apply artistic creativity, scientific understanding and practical skill to turn innovative ideas into three-dimensional outcomes.

The purpose-built DT centre, Mill, is equipped with a comprehensive range of traditional and high-tech machinery, a graphics studio, an electronics lab and forty computers packed with professional software. During practical sessions our team of highly-skilled Instructors work alongside the teaching staff to provide expert guidance, ensuring pupils have every opportunity to fulfill their creative potential.

For a visual insight into Design Technology at Winchester please view this slideshow (pdf format).


In Junior Part (1st Year) pupils tackle several projects working in groups: ‘Smartphone App', ‘Innovative Key Fob', ‘Human Centred Design', and ‘Engineered Cardboard Car Chassis'. The emphasis is on prototyping and effective communication of novel design ideas, assessed through peer critique. Each pupil also gains experience of speculative experimental design, an activity which starts from a chosen material, technology or manufacturing process and leads to innovative applications and design proposals.

Those continuing DT to IGCSE complete two additional projects ‘Carbon-fibre Smart Bike Light' and ‘360 Degree Product Study' in the summer term of Junior Part before opting to specialise in one of the following subject areas for the remainder of the course:

• Architecture, Transport, and Product Design

• Electric Vehicle Technology (the coursework element involves the design, engineering and construction of a Greenpower electric racing car as a group project)

• Furniture Design

• Robotics

The IGCSE course is ultimately assessed through a year-long design-and-make project of the candidate's choosing and two written exams.

In Sixth Book boys follow the Cambridge Pre-U course, assessed through a portfolio of project work and a 3500 word dissertation. Without the constraints of an exam syllabus boys are more able to pursue diverse areas of design interest and work with cutting edge technology and a vast range of modern materials and manufacturing processes. Starting points in the first year of the course include ‘Superform Chair', ‘Experimental Design' and ‘Disruptive Market Innovation' and involves plenty of group work and peer critique. Boys explore a variety of design methodologies and techniques and present their work through freehand sketching, 3D CAD modelling, computer simulations, physical prototypes, film, and photography. Challenging and relevant design problems are tackled with a view to developing innovative, sophisticated and elegant solutions.

The Pre-U course in Design is an excellent choice for pupils interested in applying to read Engineering, Architecture, Computer Science, Materials Science or Design.

Links with Industry and Higher Education

Regular trips enrich the curriculum at all levels. Recently, pupils have visited the MINI Car Production Plant, Design Engine Architects, Barnsley Workshop and Formaplex Ltd (manufacturers of high-end automotive components). The department has a strong link with Southampton University and boys are regularly taken to undergraduate lectures and the large-scale wind tunnel. Guest speakers have included Barber & Osgerby, award winning designers of the London 2012 Olympic torch, Engineer and TV Presenter, Rob Bell, Bloodhound SSC aerodynamicist, Ron Ayers, and Chief Aerodynamicist for Sauber F1, Willem Toet.

Past Achievements

National past achievements include the Award for Engineering Excellence 2014, the selection of two pupils for the final of Young Designers Competition 2010, and two for the Young Engineers National Final 2011. In 2010 seven pupils won prizes at the South East Region Engineering and Science competition, with Hemang Rishi (G) named Young Engineer for the South East for his autonomous vacuum cleaning robot. Winchester has been represented at the Greenpower National Finals of 2009, 2010 and 2011, and since 2012 has been competing in the International F1 in Schools Competition from 2013, Team PSI winning the Judges' Discretionary Award at the South East of England Regional Final.

Extra-curricular Activity

For details of extra-curricular activities in Mill please visit the DT Activities page