August 14, 2015

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s)

Learntec Course Information

What course is right for my child?

We have a number of courses with different formats. Use the flow charts below to decide.

 

 

What subjects do you cover?

Computer Science.

 

What level courses do you offer?

KS2, KS3, IGCSE and A Level. 

 

Which exam board is the IGCSE and A Level with?

Cambridge (CAIE). The exam codes are: IGCSE 0478/0984 and A Level: 9618

 

Do you offer ICT?

No.

 

Are the courses in-person or virtual?

All lessons are virtual.

 

Who teaches the lessons?

Julia Roebuck. You can read more about her here.

 

Are the courses live or recorded?

That depends on which course you choose – see the flow charts above.

 

How much do the courses cost?

 

That depends on the course:

 

KS2 (Self Paced): £45

KS3 (Self Paced) : £99

KS3 (Live – 1 yr) : £272 (split into 3 x termly payments)

IGCSE (Self Paced): £450 or (£480 if paying in 3 x monthly installments)

IGCSE (Live 1&2 years or Scheduled Recorded over two years) approx £550 split into termly payments over the course). This is an approx cost because the classes finish the week before the exam and that changes every year.

A Level: Please contact us

 

Does the cost of the courses include the exam fee for IGCSE and A Level?

No. It is your responsibility to pay for the exam and find an exam centre. We will assist as much as possible in finding a centre. Some exam centres offer a discount to our students and details are given when needed.

 

Do I need to buy course books?

Only for IGCSE and A Level. Details of these are given near the start of term.

Self-paced course questions:

 

For the self-paced courses, do I get the whole course at once?

Yes.

 

Do you have any sample lessons for the self-paced course?

Yes, you can register for free and watch some here: https://learntec.thinkific.com/courses/samplelessons/preview

 

What happens if I buy a self-paced course but it’s not suitable?

You will get a refund, no quibbles within 60 days of purchase.

 

How long do the self-paced courses take?

We can’t answer that because it depends on the student. Each course has a certain number of videos but there are activities and tasks to complete too.

 

How do I pay for the self-paced course?

This paid directly when you purchase the course. All major credit and debit cards are accepted as well as PayPal.

 

Live Lesson/Recorded Scheduled questions:

 

How are the lessons run?

Live lessons are on a Virtual Classroom called Electa. No videos are used at all (these use up bandwidth and distract the students). Students use the chat window to type questions, and some also use audio to ask questions.

 

What equipment will I need?

You will need either a PC running Windows, Mac OS X, Linux,  in order to use Electa, the virtual classroom. No other equipment is required. NOTE: Electa can also be run on tablet computers – there is an App, but some lessons do require access to a computer when we are programming.

Any desktop or laptop computer which is fairly good will do – and with any operating system (Windows, Mac, Linux). All the software we use is free and does not require a high-spec machine, but obviously the faster the better always applies to computers in any situation. A fast internet connection is more desirable than a high spec computer and students are advised that whilst their lesson is taking place, other family members do not use the wifi/internet to minimise their internet connection from slowing down.

 

What is the difference between the IGCSE Self-paced course and the Scheduled Recorded course?

These are different learning platforms. The scheduled recorded course is on the same learning platform as the live classes and each week a video lesson is released on that platform. Students work on the same material as the live students and they complete the same homeworks. This means homeworks must be done within a specific time.

The self-paced course you get the entire course in one go to work through as fast or slow as you like with no deadlines.

 

For the live lessons, is there a tie-in for the whole course?

The only tie-in is for each term. 

 

Do you have any sample lessons for the live classes?

No, but the self-paced course sample lessons give a feel for the live classes.

 

Do you cover everything for the IGCSE/A Level exam?

Yes. We cover 100% of the syllabus (and more!). Mock exams are set nearer to the exam dates, and students are given an extensive revision pack (self-paced students also get the pack). Past exam papers are examined to help students prepare for the exam. Guidance is also given for the pre-release coding task.

How many are in a class?

This depends on the class day/time, but it’s usually between 15-24 students.

How do I pay for the live classes (includes recorded scheduled course)?

Invoices are sent every term payment is by Direct Transfer.

 

Is there homework?

Yes. Homework is set every week and students are expected to complete it. On the learning platform, students can access lesson recordings, lesson notes and homework. Homework usually takes around 1-2 hours per week for the IGCSE course, double that for the one year intensive course.

 

What is the course content of the KS3 Live Class?

That is listed here on my website. It’s a one year course designed to prepare students for the IGCSE.

 

When are the live classes run?

Live classes are on a Tuesday or Wednesday for KS3 and IGCSE. A Level is on Thursdays.

 

How many hours a week are the lessons?

IGCSE (Two year course) and KS3 are one hour a week.

IGCSE (Fast Track one year course) is 2.5 hours a week.

A Level is 2.5 hours a week.

General Questions:

What programming language do you teach in the lessons?

KS2: Scratch

All other courses: Python

 

Who teaches the lessons?

Julia Roebuck teaches all the lessons. You can learn more about her here. She has a degree in Computer Science and over 20 years programming experience. Her degree is a 2:1 BSc(Hons) Information Technology (Software Development) from The University of Huddersfield 1996.

 

What extra support do you give?

Every student who enrols for the live classes can get individual help during Office Hours with Julia every Thursday 5-6pm (Term Time). Students are also welcome to email her for help if they can’t make this time. She aims to respond within 24 hours, but usually responds much quicker than that. Please note that we cannot chase students for their homeworks but parents can log into the lesson website to view their child’s grades and her comments. It is the parent’s responsibility to ensure their child attends the lessons and completes the homeworks.

For the self-paced courses, support is via email. Students are welcome to email at any time with any query about the course or the content of the course.

 

What is your track record for student passes, do you have any personal testimonies?

We have an outstanding track record with student grades and it’s extremely rare for students to fail the exam. Previous student grades and testimonies are listed on the website here.

 

Do students need previous experience?

KS2/KS3:No previous computing experience is needed. 

IGCSE: No previous computing experience is needed, but those without previous programming experience (or limited experience) may need to dedicate additional time to the subject in order to learn the skills. Homework will be set every week and is expected to be done in order to prepare sufficiently for the exam.

A Level: IGCSE or GCSE in Computer Science minimum grade B or 6 is required.

 

For the IGCSE, I’m not sure my child’s ability with Maths is good enough. 

There’s actually not much Maths in the IGCSE. There is :

  1. Understanding and converting binary and hexadecimal numbers (this is actually very easy and my students often comment that it’s a lot easier than they thought)
  2. Greater than/less than etc in programming
  3. Some multiplication and division by 1000 (or 1024)
  4. Simple multiplication and division
  5. Integer Division and Modulus. Sounds complicated but it’s actually easy.

 

Generally lack of Maths skills have not been a problem with this IGCSE. It’s A Level when the maths starts to get complicated.

 

How do I enrol my child for the live lessons?

Enrolment opens around Easter every year for the upcoming September classes. Classes fill up very quickly. Details can be found on our website when enrolment is open.

 

Do you have some general information about the IGCSE Computer Science?

Yes, you watch this video which explains all about it: https://youtu.be/-OHj9gy7Nqk

 

I’ve heard the IGCSE syllabus is changing?

Yes, the CAIE IGCSE Computer Science syllabus is changing so that exams sat from 2023 onwards will have the new syllabus. They have added a considerable amount of content to the course. All lessons for the two year course from Sept 2021 will be for the new syllabus. 

 

What about the One Year Fast Track course?

For Sept 2021 the fast track course will be the current syllabus because students will sit the exam in 2022.

 

I’ve got a question you haven’t answered here.

You can email us: info@learntec.co.uk and we’re happy to answer any other questions you have.