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Technical pitch

ADVANCED MANUFACTURING DESIGN amp; TECHNOLOGY. By the RCA Schools Technology Project. Hodder amp; Stoughton. pupils' book pound;16.99. teacher's guide pound;15.

Textbooks which successfully span the divide between key stage 4 and first year degree courses are few and far between. Such books must present factual information in a clear and interesting way and at the same time explore subject matter in much greater depth. This book does both effectively and should be essential reading for any student studying the new A-level specifications in design and technology, manufacturing or engineering. The writing team understand the needs of students and write in a style which engages and informs the reader. Numerous industrial case studies enliven the text.

Quite correctly, te first section focuses on supporting students in planning and managing their own learning. This is where some students find the transition from GCSE courses most difficult and they will therefore welcome the advice and guidance.

Further chapters focus on working from customer need to customer satisfaction, design strategies and manufacturing systems. Case studies include the work of professional designers and students.

The excellent teacher's guide will help those teaching post-16 courses for the first time and provides solid advice on course planning and management. In-service training activities, some useful for work pre-16, is also included.

BOB WELCH. Bob Welch is senior adviser (curriculum and assessment) for Bracknell Forest, Berkshire.

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