Higher Computing Science
The Higher Computing Science Course introduces learners to an advanced range of computational processes and thinking, and develops a rigorous approach to the design and development process across a variety of contemporary contexts. Learners gain an awareness of the importance that computing professionals play in meeting the needs of society today and for the future, in fields which include science, education, business and industry.
Updates and announcements
- October 2016 subject update (286 KB)
- May 2016 subject update (212 KB)
- October 2015 subject update (320 KB)
- August 2015 subject update (National 3 - National 4 - National 5 - Higher) (129 KB)
- May 2015 subject update (199 KB)
- January 2015 subject update - Advanced Higher (484 KB)
- September 2014 subject update (396 KB)
- Special Edition Update June 2014 (152 KB)
- September 2013 update letter
Change to National 5 and Higher Computing Science Understanding Standards events
The National 5 and Higher Understanding Standards events which were due to take place in Aberdeen (16 January) and Stirling (24 January) have both been cancelled. There will now be one event in Stirling on 23 January.
Delegates who booked places at the events on 16 and 24 January will be notified and offered a place at the Stirling event on 23 January instead.
For more information and to book a place, visit www.sqa.org.uk/nqevents
This explains the overall structure of the Course, including its purpose and aims and information on the skills, knowledge and understanding that will be developed.
Course Assessment Specification
This explains the structure of the Course assessment; including the type and method of assessment. It also includes information on Course coverage.
These provide an outline of what each Unit will cover within the Course and detail the Outcomes and Assessment Standards.
Advice and guidance
Course and Unit Support Notes
These provide advice and guidance for teachers/lecturers on learning, teaching and assessment within the Course and its Units.
The following document contains the Course Support Notes and the Unit Support Notes for this Course. They can be printed together or separately.
Past Papers and Marking Instructions
Specimen Question Papers and Marking Instructions
These illustrate the standard, structure and requirements of the question papers learners will sit. These also include marking instructions.
- Higher Computing Science Specimen Question Paper
- Question Paper Brief - Higher Computing Science
The National Parent Forum of Scotland (NPFS) have also produced Higher Revision in a Nutshell guides to help learners prepare for Higher exams.
Questions in the Higher Computing Science question paper will now be numbered sequentially throughout, as shown in the Exemplar Question Paper. The Specimen Question Paper will be updated to reflect this in due course.
General assessment information provides instructions for the conduct of coursework, an overview of the assessment task, evidence to be gathered and general marking instructions.
Coursework assessment tasks provide the live assessment task, including marking instructions and instructions for candidates. Teachers/lecturers can access these confidential documents through their SQA Co-ordinator.
Unit Assessment Support
These documents contain details of Unit assessment task(s), show approaches to gathering evidence and how the evidence can be judged against the Outcomes and Assessment Standards. Teachers/lecturers can arrange access to these confidential documents through their SQA Co-ordinator.
Understanding Standards materials
We are publishing examples of candidate evidence with commentaries as part of our Understanding Standards programme. These materials are for teachers and lecturers to help them develop their understanding of the standards required for assessment. As these materials become available, they are being published in the following locations:
- Available from our secure website Materials relating to Unit assessment, internally assessed components of Course assessment, and externally assessed components of Course assessment which are subject to visiting assessment. Teachers and lecturers can arrange access to these materials through their SQA Co-ordinator.
- Available from our Understanding Standards website Materials relating to externally assessed components of Course assessment, with the exception of those subject to visiting assessment.
More information on our Understanding Standards programme, can be found on our Understanding Standards page.