Design & Technology

Manufacturing is more than just putting parts together. It's coming up with ideas, testing principles and perfecting the engineering, as well as final assembly.James Dyson (1947–) British Inventor

An interest in ideas is a sign of human life. People are fascinated by what the future is going to be – and the future is going to be an accumulation of ideas.Thomas Heatherwick (1970–) British Designer

Good design is as little design as possible. Less, but better – because it concentrates on the essential aspects, and the products are not burdened with non-essentials. Back to purity, back to simplicity.Dieter Rams (1932–) German Industrial Designer

Good design is to bring a calm and simplicity to what are incredibly complex problems so that you're not aware really of the solution, you're not aware of how hard the problem was that was eventually solved.Jonathan Ive (1967–) British Designer and Chief Design Officer Apple Inc

Oakham's Design and Technology Department is one of the most highly respected in the UK, thanks to its outstanding facilities, staff and, of course, the remarkable work that our pupils create. The Department is located within the Jerwood School of Design, a purpose-built facility that contains cutting edge equipment, including CREO 3.0 CAD software, 3D Rapid Prototype Printers, and an extensive range of CNC machinery.

At Oakham there is a clear and highly enjoyable process through which pupils can become successful designers and engineers.

Design Technology is taught to all pupils from Lower One to Form 3, where they are given the opportunity to explore a range of ‘design and make’ activities, which encourage them to develop skills and knowledge which better equip them to solve real life problems and make use of the equipment and facilities on offer.

Pupils who then go on to study GCSE Design and Technology (an average of 45 per year) have the choice of specialising in to include electronics, resistant materials and textile products.  

Students have further choice on how they want to specialise post-16. A-level Design offers students the chance to develop a broad view of Design and Technology, and to really appreciate the relationship between design, materials, manufacture and marketing. It is more product-focused compared to the International Baccalaureate Design course, which takes a more scientific approach to design.

Students can submit work to ‘The Young Engineer for Britain Awards’. They can also be entered for an Arkwright Scholarship, which is a national award for students who wish to pursue a career in design or engineering.

Students have the opportunity to see different designs in context through field trips to the Design and Science Museums in London in Form 4 and car manufacturers in the UK and abroad in Form 6.

Typical courses that DT students have gone on to study after Oakham include Product Design, Industrial Design, Architecture and Engineering.

Tim Weston

Head of Design and Technology

I have been Head of Department since 2000 and in my roles as Prinicipal Moderator of IB DT IA, I have been involved in the curriculum review for both the current and previous subject guides and I have contributed to the writing of examination papers and have over 13 years of experience leading workshops. I am an ISI schools inspector and have contributed to the following subject resources: Introducing the IB Diploma Programme, Creative Schools' website and Audi Design Foundation. I am a member of the DATA secondary working group and achieved the IED prize for Outstanding Contribution to Post 16 Education in 2006.Having been a keen rower, I represented the GB U23 team at the Nations Cup in 1999. After which I spent time coaching the senior women’s squad at Nottingham Trent University, assisting coaching at Worcester Rowing Club and starting rowing as a sport at Oakham.