Design & Technology

Aims

The Design & Technologies Curriculum in Middle School aims to develop the knowledge, understanding and skills to ensure that, individually and collaboratively, students:

  • are creative, innovative and enterprising when using traditional, contemporary and emerging technologies, and understand how technologies have developed over time
  • effectively and responsibly select and manipulate appropriate technologies, resources, materials, data, systems, tools and equipment when designing and creating products, services, environments and digital solutions
  • critique and evaluate technologies processes to identify and create solutions to a range of problems or opportunities
  • investigate, design, plan, manage, create, produce and evaluate technologies solutions
  • engage confidently with technologies and make informed, ethical and sustainable decisions about technologies for preferred futures including personal health and wellbeing, recreation, everyday life, the world of work and enterprise, and the environment.

In addition to the overarching aims of the Design & Technology Curriculum it more specifically aims to develop the knowledge, understanding and skills to ensure that, individually and collaboratively, students:

  • document design ideas and communicate these to a range of audiences
  • select and manipulate a range of materials, components, tools and equipment creatively, competently and safely in the development of designed solutions suitable for a range of technologies contexts
  • explore, investigate, create and critique innovative, ethical and sustainable designed solutions for preferred futures using a range of technologies
  • develop confidence as critical users and designers and producers of technologies and designed solutions
  • understand the roles and responsibilities of designers, technologists and those in related occupations.

Structure

The curriculum for Design and Technology describes the distinct knowledge, understanding and skills of the subject. This approach allows students to develop a comprehensive understanding of the nature of traditional, contemporary and emerging technologies. It also provides flexibility especially in Years 7, 8 & 9 for developing integrated teaching programs that focus on Technology subjects and the other learning areas.

Years 7 to 9

In the Design & Technology learning area, students use technologies knowledge and understanding, technologies processes and production skills and design, systems and/or computational thinking to solve and produce creative solutions to problems, needs or opportunities. They communicate and record their ideas using a range of media and technologies. These specialised problem-solving activities will be sophisticated, acknowledge the complexities of contemporary life and may make connections to related specialised occupations and further study.

Increasingly, students develop a global perspective, with opportunities to understand the complex interdependencies involved in the development of technologies and between the developer and user in their technologies solutions, and how these can contribute to preferred futures. Students will develop an understanding of the interdependence of technologies development, values, beliefs and environment. Through undertaking technologies processes students develop design, computational and systems thinking; and organisational and project management skills.

Years 7 & 8 Design & Technology

Students will undertake design projects that involve the three processes and production skills: critiquing, exploring and investigating; generating, developing and evaluating ideas; and planning, producing and evaluating designed solutions. By the end of each year students will have had the opportunity to design, produce and evaluate designed solutions for each of the identified Technologies contexts. To provide breadth of study, students should complete at least one product design project, one service design project and one environment design project, within each year.

Typically a unit of work in Design and Technology will feature the integration of Design and Technology knowledge and understanding content descriptions.

Students will:

  • Examine and prioritise competing factors in the development of technologies and designed solutions to meet community needs including ethics, social values and sustainability
  • Understand the ways in which products, services and environments evolve locally and globally through creativity, innovation and enterprise
  • Describe ways to create effective designed solutions that consider ethics, social values and sustainability factors through selecting and combining properties and characteristics of resources
  • Analyse how motion, force and energy, are related and interact with the properties of materials and components in electromechanical systems and the ways these systems can be manipulated and controlled in simple, engineered designed solutions
  • Critique, explore and investigate needs or opportunities and a range of materials, components, tools and techniques to collaboratively develop produce creative and sustainable designed solutions in response to design briefs
  • Generate, develop, communicate, test, evaluate and communicate design ideas, plans and processes for identified needs and audiences using manual and digital technologies and collaborative techniques
  • Competently and safely use a broad range of materials, components, tools and techniques when designing, and project managing production of sustainable designed solutions for technologies contexts and evaluating using identified criteria for success

Year 9 Design & Technology

Learning in Design and Technologies builds on concepts, skills and processes developed in earlier years, and teachers will revisit and strengthen these as needed.

By the end of Year 9 students will have had the opportunity to design, produce and evaluate at least four designed solutions focused on a range of materials and technologies specialisations. Students should have opportunities to experience designing, producing and evaluating designed solutions for services and environments as well as products.

In Year 9 the curriculum focuses on students using Design and Technology knowledge and understanding, processes and production skills and design thinking to produce designed solutions to identified needs or opportunities. These needs and opportunities are of relevance to individuals and to global communities. Students work independently and collaboratively. Specialised problem-solving activities will be sophisticated, acknowledge the complexities of contemporary life and make connections to related specialised occupations and further study. Increasingly, study will have a global perspective, with opportunities to understand the complex interdependencies involved in the development of technologies and enterprises. Students specifically focus on preferred futures, taking into account ethics, legal issues, social values, economic, environmental and social sustainability factors and using strategies such as life cycle thinking.

Students identify the steps involved in planning the production of designed solutions. They develop detailed project management plans incorporating elements such as sequenced time, cost and action plans to manage a range of design tasks safely. They apply management plans, changing direction when necessary, to successfully complete design tasks. Students use creativity, innovation and enterprise skills with increasing confidence, independence and collaboration.

Using manual and digital technologies students generate and represent original ideas and production plans in two and three-dimensional representations using a range of technical drawings including perspective, scale, orthogonal and production drawings with sectional and exploded views. They produce rendered, illustrated views for marketing and use graphic visualisation software to produce dynamic views of virtual products.

Students identify and establish safety procedures that minimise risk and manage projects with safety and efficiency in mind, maintaining safety standards and management procedures to ensure success. They learn to transfer theoretical knowledge to practical activities across a range of projects.

Students will:

  • Critically analyse and explain how the design and production of designed solutions for global preferred futures involves complex design processes and decisions, and can require expertise from specialist occupations
  • Explain factors influencing design and how products, services and environments evolve and the impact of emerging technologies on design decisions and preferred futures
  • Investigate and make judgments about how properties and characteristics of resources can be combined to design and produce designed solutions appropriate for purpose, with consideration of ethics, social values and sustainability factors
  • Critique, explore and investigate needs or opportunities to develop design briefs and justify the selection of an increasingly sophisticated range of technologies, materials and systems to produce creative designed solutions
  • Apply design thinking, creativity, innovation, enterprise and project management skills to develop, evaluate, modify and communicate design ideas; sequence production and management plans using digital technologies
  • Work flexibly to safely test, select, justify and use appropriate technologies to design, produce and evaluate designed solutions using identified criteria for success and suggesting improvements to design processes

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