Electronics

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Reasons to study this course

  • Electronics is fundamental to today’s technological society, whether the application is from telecommunications, medical equipment, entertainment or industry.
  • It is a practical course that will develop problem solving and circuit design skills, as well as some programming which is increasingly a major part of electronic engineering.
  • Electronics is an excellent companion course to Physics or Computer Science.
  • It serves as a useful addition to advanced courses for potential engineers, scientists, music technologists and computer programmers.
  • If you are creative, have an enquiring mind and an interest in problem solving you are well suited to Electronics A-Level.

What you will need to study this course

  • minimum Grade 5 in GCSE English Language, Science or Physics
  • minimum Grade 5 in GCSE Maths (Grade 6 is advised as the course involves a lot of algebra when problem solving.
  • you need the desire to develop your practical skills.

What you will study

Basic d.c. electricity theory, input and output subsystems, digital and analogue electronics, timing circuits, audio circuits, wireless communication, optical communication, a.c. and mains circuits, power electronics and microcontrollers.

The AS course can be completed as a stand-alone qualification.

How you will be assessed

Year 1 (AS) – one exam, three short practical assessments worth 20% where students built digital, analogue and microcontroller-based circuits

Year 2 (A-Level) – two exams and practical assessment again worth 20% which comprises one short microcontroller project and one extended piece where students design, construct, test and evaluate a complex circuit.

Priestley Extra

Take part in activities through the UK Electronics Skills Foundation.  Students have previously entered the Electronics Weekly Bright Sparks competition.

Progression

University, especially electronic or electrical engineering. For many Electronic Engineering university courses, A-Level Electronics is an alternative to Physics as long as A-Level Maths is also taken. Others progress onto apprenticeship schemes, often engineering-based, with companies such as Jaguar-Land Rover, Bentley Motors, Sellafield and United Utilities.

Recommended Reading

BBC Bitesize is a good place to start to revise some d.c. electric circuit theory from GCSE. The EDUQAS exam board provides excellent support material in the form of an e-book, which is downloadable as a pdf.

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