National Curriculum Design and Technology Working Group: Interim Report 1988

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A report from the National Curriculum Council (NCC). An initial consultation report in November 1988 proposed an ambitious, broad, integrated approach to a range of design and technology-related subjects explored through a wide variety of contexts. It recognised the complex relationship between the knowledge and skills and the practical aspects of design and technology. It also defined the broader requirements for IT in schools for the first time. The report also identifies the need for the extent of support needed for professional development and records the assurance of the minister that such funding would be available.

There are three chapters:
1. The contribution of design and technology to the school curriculum
2. Profile components, Attainment Targets (ATs) and Programmes of Study (PoS) for design and technology
3. Information technology
and various appendices, including a summary.

The report defined what what seen as the special characteristics of design and technology, that is, that ‘pupils learn the capability to, operate effectively and creatively in the made world. design and technology is an activity carried out with definite purposes in mind, with specific constraints and requiring value judgements at every stage. It has its own distinctive non-verbal ways of thought including use of imagination and ‘imaging’. It is interesting to see how this statement has developed over time into what are now known as the ‘design and technology importance statements'.

Initially, within the design and technology profile component, five ATs were proposed:
AT1: Explore and investigate contexts for design and technological activities
AT2: Formulate proposals and choose a design for development
AT3: Develop the design and plan for the making of an artefact or system
AT4: Make artefacts or systems
AT5: Appraise the processes, outcomes and effects of design and technological activities.

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