Resistant Materials Coursework Research

Design and Technology: Resistant Materials Curriculum

Resistant Materials runs for Year 11 students who are finishing off their GCSE qualification. Please see Design and Technology for details of the course taught at Year 9 and Year 10.


Year 11

The majority of Year 11 will be focused on the controlled assessment unit. This is a design and make activity where the students will demonstrate their skills, knowledge and understanding of resistant materials by designing and making a high quality product.

Half Term 1 (June-July)
Students will be introduced to their coursework unit and start to research and design a product based on a given design brief.
Students carry out an analysis of their chosen design brief. Detailed research and analysis’s undertaken in order to help the students to gather information to help them to design and write a design specification.

External Assessment/Controlled Assessment: Yes
Internal Common Assessment: See below
Coursework Deadline this H/T: Analysis of the design brief. Research of existing products, materials and other relevant areas
Field Trips/Visits: No

Half Term 2 (September - October)
The students will use the information gather in their research and design a range of possible solutions to their chosen design problem. The students present their work in an A3 format using a range of different design and presentation techniques. At the end of the design ideas section the students evaluate each idea to identify the best design to develop into a final design solution.

External Assessment/Controlled Assessment:
Internal Common Assessment: See below
Coursework Deadline this H/T: 4 initials will be produced. These ideas will be reviewed.
Field Trips/Visits: No

Half Term 3 (November - December)
Students develop their chosen design into a final realised solution. Testing, modelling and experimentation are encouraged in order to achieve a final design. Presentation drawings of the final design are produced detailing materials, processes and sizes. Every detail of the final design must be thoroughly considered and tested. A detailed production plan is produced alongside a cutting list of materials needed for the manufacturing process.

External Assessment/Controlled Assessment:
Internal Common Assessment:
Coursework Deadline this H/T: Design Development, final design drawing and production plan. Cutting list of materials.
Field Trips/Visits: No

Half Term 4 (January - February)
This whole term is dedicated to the manufacture of the designed and planned product. Students have approximately 16 hours to produce their final piece of practical work. During this time students are expected to produce a “Diary of manufacture” to evidence the making of their product.

External Assessment/Controlled Assessment: Yes
Internal Common Assessment: No
Coursework Deadline this H/T: Practical work completed by February half term. Diary of manufacture completed over the half term.
Field Trips/Visits: No

Half Term 5 (March - April)
Final testing and evaluation of the finished products carried out. Work is presented in the final folder for submission for final assessment

External Assessment/Controlled Assessment: Yes
Internal Common Assessment: No
Coursework Deadline this H/T: Testing and Evaluation. FINAL COURSEWORK DEADLINE.
Field Trips/Visits: No

Half term 6 (April - May)
Structured time for revision and past exam paper exercises.

External Assessment/Controlled Assessment: No
Internal Common Assessment: No
Coursework Deadline this H/T: N/A
Field Trips/Visits: No

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1.  Project Timeplan/ Gantt Chart

2.  Design Situation & Brief

3.  Task Analysis

4.  Joints & Fixings

5.  Product Analysis of Existing Products

6.  Industrial Practices / Systems & Control

7.  Materials & Finishing

8.  Client Profile & Interview

9.  Questionnaire & Results

10.  Ergonomics & Anthropometrics

11.  Project Environment/ Setting

12.  Environmental Issues

13.  Research Analysis

This is a way that projects are planned over a set period of time in industry. It will gain you marks in your coursework for both the planning and industrial practices marks.

You need to use Microsoft Excel (or another spreadsheet software) to produce the plan.

Column A should contain all of the tasks that you need to complete for your coursework. You can get these tasks from your project tracking list (click below to download the sheet if you have lost yours!)

Row 1 should include the hours available to you to complete the tasks. This is 40hours for your coursework. Do this in 2 hour blocks.

Think carefully about how long each task will take; remember some pages will only take 1 hour and so you will be able to fit more than 1 task into each 2 hour block.

 Also remember that the development section includes your practical work, which needs to take up a lot of time as it is awarded 60% of your overall coursework marks!
This takes up the LEFT HAND side of an A3 design sheet.

is a description of the problem that you are attempting to solve.

It is a paragraph of text (writing) that describes the problem. You don't say how you are going to solve the problem, only what it is. 

The first sentence should explain the problem briefly. The following sentences should explain the problems in more detail. 

For example; 

A friend enjoys playing computer games on his Playstation 3 console and listening to music, but has a storage problem in his bedroom. The friend lives with his parents and so all of his belongings are confined to his bedroom. He often has friends round to visit and play computer games with. There is no existing storage in his bedroom for his Playstation Console & games, Ipod dock, stereo or CDs. All of his CDs and games get left on the floor and broken due to this lack of storage.


This is a piece of text (writing) that explains what you are going to design and make to solve the problem.

Start the Design Brief with “I am going to design and make…” then a general description of what it is you think will solve the design problem.

Don’t be too specific! It should be flexible enough to allow your research and design work to develop over the course of the project.

Don’t be too specific when mentioning things like materials, instead state the properties the materials will need to have.

Mention points such as safety, general size, functions (what it will need to do) target market (who will buy it?).


This takes up the RIGHT HAND side of an A3 design sheet (the one that has your Design Brief & Situation on the left hand side!)

It is a spider diagram containing all of the areas you need to think about when designing your product.

The centre of the diagram should have the words “Task Analysis” in it. Then you will need a leg for each important area you will need to look into.

Include areas such as Aesthetics/Design, Cost, Customer/Target Market, Ergonomics, Environment, Safety, Size, Function, Materials.

Then expand each leg with detail about that area, for example;


You need to carry out research into types of wood joints and constructional fixings you could use in your project.  It is best to divide the page into two, covering wood joints on one side and the other side on consructional fixings.

Either gather examples of joints and fixings from your technology room and photograph these using a digital camera, or gather research images from the internet or product catalogues.  A suitable layout for the page is given below: 

Evaluating against ACCESS FM Criteria; for higher grade candidates

  You need to complete a table to evaluate against criteria for each product. This is as well as completing the analysis through annotation shown above.



Example of an incomplete gannt chart

suggested layout for each section of Materials Research

Example of CLOSED questions

Example of OPEN questions


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