Welcome to GCSE Child Development

Course Overview

Students follow the AQA Home Economics: Child Development 4580 course.

The course covers the following areas:

  • Parenthood- types of families,
  • Pregnancy-pre-conception, ante-natal care, birth
  • Diet, health and care of the child
  • Development of the child- physical, intellectual, emotional and social
  • Support for the parent and child-childcare options, special care children, Health services

Students will study the subject content through a variety of techniques, with visits from and to outside agencies and many practical activities. Students in Year 10 will have the opportunity to take one of the RealCare babies home for a weekend.


Written external examination

  • Unit 1: written paper. 1 hour 30 mins – 100 marks – 40%

Controlled assessments

  • Unit 2: research task. 30 marks – 20%
    Research with completion within approx. 7 hours of supervised time in school
  • Unit 3: child study. 60 marks – 40%
    Research with completion within approx. 20 hours of supervised time in school

Home Learning Policy

Students in Year 10 will have homework on a weekly basis as appropriate to the topic being covered. This will take the form of revision for tests, completing tasks started in class, revision exercises or research for topics.

Students in Year 11 will be required to spend several hours a week preparing for the coursework tasks, completing activities with their chosen child and writing up sections when required. Deadlines will be set for sections to be completed and these must be strictly adhered so that the students can take advantage of advice given and to make amendments where required.

Students failing to achieve deadlines will be required to stay behind after school in order to complete missing work.

Year Plan

Assessment date Topics to be assessed
1st half term Y10 Family types
2nd half term Y10 Female reproduction, menstruation, ovulation etc.
3rd half term Y10 Baby’s support system
4th half term Y10 Internal Exam covering all topics studied so far
Autumn term Y11 Child Study
Autumn term Y11 Mock exam
Spring term Y11 Research task
May Y11 AQA external exam


Unit 2: Research Task

  • 30 marks – 20%

AQA will provide a research task based on a section from the subject content of the course. This a relatively short task and will be completed during the Spring term of Year 11.

Unit 3: Child study

  • 60 marks – 40%

This is a reduced study from previous years. Students will complete an introductory visit and 4 others based on the development of their chosen child over a period of not less than 4 months. Work for this study will start at the end of Year 10, with the actual study taking place in the Autumn of Year 11 ready for completion before the February half term.

In order to complete the Child Study, students considering this subject, will need to have easy access (approx. 1 hour per month) to a child who is not yet aged 5 at the end of the Child Study. In some instances it will be possible for students to ‘share’ a child but complete their study independently.

It will NOT however be possible for the school to provide access to a suitable child for this study, students will need to make their own arrangements.

Guidance for the Child Study can be found in the ‘O’ drive under Child Development – Child Study