KS3 computing for the non-specialist teacher - face to face CP215

For Key Stage 3 computing teachers who are new or existing to the subject. This CPD covers the key subject knowledge topics required to teach the computing Key Stage 3 programme of study.


Computing is a national curriculum foundation subject and a vital aspect of a broad and balanced curriculum for all learners. If you’re new, moving towards or an existing teacher of Key Stage 3 computing, then this course will allow you to explore the subject knowledge required to confidently teach the Key Stage 3 programme of study.

The sessions within this course are designed to give you the subject knowledge around key topics such as algorithms, data representation, hardware and programming. Also explore useful and engaging strategies for delivering this content back in the classroom.

Who is it for?

This course is for prospective teachers of Key Stage 3 computing who may be new to the subject, or who may have taught computing in earlier years.

Prior Knowledge:

No prior experience or knowledge of computing is expected before attending this course. It is advised that you become familiar with the National Curriculum in Computing before participating.

What does it cost?

This course costs £65 for participants from maintained state schools in England. If you are from an independent school or from an organisation outside England, then the course fee is £220.

Course units:

  • 01 | Introduction – To start the day you’ll get to grips with the computing Programme Of Study, the requirements at Key Stage 3 and how students may have progressed from earlier school years.
  • 02 | Data representation – Learn more about key hardware components inside the computer and how computers use binary, convert between binary and decimal values, how images and text are represented by a computer.
  • 03 | Algorithms – Explore what algorithms are and how they fit within the Key Stage 3 programme, begin representing your own flowchart algorithms and learn how several search and sort algorithms function.
  • 04 | Programming – Learn the principle programming constructs required at Key Stage 3 including sequencing, selection and iteration, including both condition and count controlled iteration. During this session you’ll begin using these constructs in a block based language before moving to a text based language.

How will you learn?

Hands-on experiential learning with the collaborative support of your peers.

Expert advice and instruction on the computing curriculum and the expectations of a computer science teacher, from experienced classroom practitioners.

Do you prefer to learn remotely?

If so, take a look at:

Key stage 3 computing for the non-specialist teacher

How long is the course?

This is a one-day course which consists of five hours of teaching time.

This course is delivered as part of the National Centre for Computing Education.



Participants will:

  • Understand why computers use binary and be able to convert between binary and decimal values.
  • Understand what an algorithm is and how to represent them by using flowcharts.
  • Be able to explain how search and sort algorithms work.
  • Be able to use a block based programming language using constructs sequencing, selection and iteration.
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