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Tech Studies - Degrees of separation

A "calming effect" would have been produced by Questions 1 to 4 in the Higher paper's Section A, said Bob Donnachie, principal teacher of design and technology at Grove Academy in Dundee. Question 3, dealing with the stepper motor, might have been enjoyed by candidates, as they calculated the number of degrees turned and the time it would take.

All questions in Section A must be answered, amounting to 60 out of 100 marks, but none should have tripped up candidates. Question 7 covered structures, often a tricky area but not too daunting this time. A diagram showed all but one of the forces acting on a cycle rack fitted to the back of a car, which candidates had to find.

In Section B, two from three extended questions must be tackled. Most Grove Academy candidates plumped for Question 10, a "straightforward" structures question requiring nodal analysis.

There was an even split in those attempting the other two questions. Question 9, dealing with applied electronics and control, looked daunting because of the amount of reading required, but pupils would have settled once they got started. The same was true of Question 11.

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