Design and Technology is a modern, forward-looking subject. We utilise up-to-date technologies to solve the design problems of today, and to engineer, design and create the world we will live in tomorrow.

The subject suits students who are genuinely curious and interested in the designed world around them and who wish progress to Architecture, Engineering or Design degrees. To discover more about what Design and Technology offers, follow the links below:

view a short film here 

download a PDF

Evolution of design

Technology has progressed enormously over the past 50 years and is clearly set to continue. From developing materials that can be mass produced into complex shapes, to designing a more sustainable way of living, our lives are intricately affected by designers, architects and engineers.

Designing is an intelligent activity, which involves considering a wide range of external factors, such as existing designs and designers, aesthetics, ergonomics, sustainability, costs, health and safety, materials, processes, structural integrity and consumer demand.

Design itself comes in many guises and the ability to draw upon areas such as maths, science, technology, communication and art play a crucial role.


This is engineering

One career that Design Technology can lead to is engineering. Engineering itself covers a huge array of sectors and industries; engineers can be involved in building, testing and designing: they might work on large products like aircraft; small products like smart phones; buildings or infrastructure; energy sources such as wind power or nuclear power; computing systems or software; transport; medicine; food; music; clothing and much more.

To find out more about the vast array of careers available in engineering and the routes available to get there, head over to Tomorrow’s Engineers: or view the videos below



GCSE and A-level

GCSE students will have the opportunity to work with a range of materials in a couple of design and make projects in preparation for their main GCSE project. At A-level, students design, manufacture and evaluate their own designs. During this process they use computer-aided design (CAD) and computer-aided manufacture (CAM) as appropriate.

Links with relevant industrial contacts are regularly sought. There is also a taught element, which prepares students for the two examined components.

We aim to inspire and empower students. To help them become active participants in designing their own future by giving them the chance to learn through theoretical understanding and experience.

To learn more about Design and Technology at Epsom College follow the links, and see examples of recent GCSE and A-level artwork below:

With every pupil having the opportunity to study Design and Technology in Years 7, 8 and 9, this time is designed to give pupils an insight and practical understanding of a range of materials and processes through small project work.

In Year 7, each student should complete a small torch, bug box and pewter casting with blister packaging.

In Year 9, each student should complete an MP3 speaker dock, and a small hardwood storage box with dovetail joints. Other projects include logos onto sports bottles and seasonal decorations.

It is hoped that all pupils will develop their skills from Years 7-9 with increasingly demanding and complex project work, learning through practical experience and taught theory.

Pupils will learn how to enjoy working in a safe manner and be able to develop their own ideas. Some pupils also opt to use their own time to undertake more advanced projects.

We have opted to follow the Edexcel GCSE (9-1) Design and Technology 1DT0/1F.

This GCSE prepares pupils to become creative and critical thinkers. It develops their skills to design and deliver prototypes that solve real and relevant problems.

The course combines the use of CAD and CAM, through our excellent range of CNC machines, with more traditional manufacturing processes.

Pupils develop their knowledge and skills through the completion of design exercises, small project work, taught theory lessons and a series of visits to exhibitions and industrial environments.

We follow the AQA Design and Technology: Product Design specification. It requires the following:

  • an enthusiasm for all aspects of Design in our society
  • a genuine curiosity into how things work and how they could be improved
  • an enquiring mind and an ability to become independent and critical thinkers who can adapt their technical knowledge and understanding to different design situations
  • the ability to use information and communications technology (ICT) to enhance your design work
  • a passion for problem-solving, developing potential solutions further and a desire to build the products you have designed.

In addition to the 50% emphasis on examinations, students also pursue individual design interests through the project, which focuses on their ability to design and make. Design and Technology is concerned with recognising and meeting needs through the application of scientific knowledge, investigative research, the use of physical resources and the creative process essential to see potential and alternative solutions.

The theory part of the course is delivered through two areas of study:

  • Technical principles
  • Designing and making principles

Epsom is fortunate to have stunning facilities for Design and Technology.

Our pupils can make the most of an array of top-spec and top quality tools, technology and IT, combining the traditional with the cutting-edge.

Two fully-networked design studios

  • 40 PCs, an A3 scanner and a ‘follow me’ printer
  • Apple TV, Wacom Touchscreens.
  • Design handling collection and Design library with a variety of magazine subscriptions.

Large multi-media workshop

  • Two engineers’ lathes, large milling machine, mortise, three pillar drills, two wood lathes and large range of supporting machines and hand tools.
  • Hot metals work area with aluminium casting, brazing hearths and a MIG welder with the capacity to weld mild steel, stainless steel and aluminium.

Multimedia project workshop

  •  1224HD EXCEL router and electronics facility, pewter casting and enamelling kit

CNC suite

  • 3D scanner, large footprint laser cutter, Unimatic router and plastics forming equipment.
  • Roland CAMM-1vinyl cutter
  • An HP Colour 3D printer, Up! 3D printer

Machine room

  • Large circular saw, planer thicknesser, table router, timber and board storage

Exhibition Display area


  • Affinity suite of Publisher, Designer and Photo
  • Computer Aided Design (Techsoft 2D Design, Solid Works, Pro Engineer and Google Sketch Up).
  • In addition, pupils can use the Focus Software suite and have access to a range of instructional films through the Epsom TV facility.

Pupils develop their knowledge and skills through the completion of design exercises, small project work, taught theory lessons and a series of visits to exhibitions and industrial environments.

Current visits include:

  • the Oxford Mini car factory
  • the New Holland tractor factory
  • the V&A museum
  • the Science Museum.

In addition, voluntary trips are offered to see key exhibitions at London Design week, the London Design Festival and Grand Designs Live as appropriate.

The Arkwright Trust, founded in 1990, is a registered charity that administers the most prestigious scholarship scheme of its type in the UK. It supports young people during their A-level studies by awarding £300-a-year to assist with the purchase of materials and books, with the student carrying the status of Arkwright Scholar into University.

The Trust aims to identify, inspire and nurture future leaders in engineering and technical (as opposed to aesthetic) design. The Arkwright Engineering Scholarships have a rigorous selection process and they encourage students to pursue engineering or technical design at university or through a higher-level apprenticeship and to take up careers in the field.

Over the past few years, Epsom College has excelled.

Epsom College has achieved a good level of success with a number of pupils receiving a scholarship in recent years.