Top 10 Resources For OCR A Level Computer Science H046/H446 Watch

TheMuslimCompSci
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As Salamu Alaykum Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakatuh World!

As the title says this is a ranking of the top 10 resources for the H046/H446 spec. Now I must admit, I wasn't even sure there were 10 decent resources to put on this list but after a bit of digging I've found them.

So here's how this is going to work, each place in the ranking may be occupied by more than one resource (that may be part of the same series). They will all be ranked according to 5 indicators each rated out of 10 to give the resource a combined score out of 10 which will be followed by a final verdict:

Content: arguably the most important, a resource is no good if it doesn't cover the entire spec!

Concision: ranks resources according to how they deliver the content, not what the content is like the previous indicator. Basically, the less waffle the better!

Presentation: a good resource should be aesthetically appealing, even it has all the content it should lay out all the information in an easy to grasp form.

Accessibility: similar to the previous indicator but judges resources according to how accessible is the information itself, not the presentation of the information. In other words, how easy is it to understand the content delivered.

Price: no matter how good a resource is, if it's expensive chances are you may not even use it so the price of a resource is essential in this ranking.

The links to each resource will be in the title. Anyway, without further ado, let's do this!


10: Teach-ICT For Computer Science

Content 7/10: Doesn't cover the entire spec. Only covers material for the Computer Systems and Computing Principles exams and a bit for the programmming exam. No material for the coursework component either.

Concision 8/10: The content available on the website is fairly straight to the point. It has enough info to allow a good understanding but not too much so that it just turns into waffle which is fairly consistent throughout the whole website.

Presentation 9/10: Despite presenting all the info on a website, the content is very well displayed with short paragraphs/bullet points accompanied by images making this resource very appealing.

Accessibility 9/10: Uses a straightforward approach in delivering material which is very easy to understand. No flowery language or technical terminology, takes you through the theory step by step.

Price 3/10: £145 per year. Everything on the website was initially free about a year or so ago but back then it was still in its development phase I suppose. Anyway, now that it's complete they decided to add a massive price tag to it which is clearly unreasonable for your average student. Subscription gives you access to ALL the resources on the website but there's not much for OCR A level Computer Science for it to be worth it. About 90% of it is for GCSE so there's honestly no point in investing in this resource. The only way the vast majority of students will have access to these resources is if the school subscribes and lets the students use the resources for free.

Final Score & Verdict: If your school doesn't give you this for free, don't subscribe. There's simply not enough material on this website catered to the A level spec for it to be worth £145. Even if you don't have access to this website don't worry, you're not missing out on much. 7.2/10

Final Teach-ICT For Computer Science Score: 7.2/10


9: Mr Fraser Computing Resources

Content 5/10: The site is a work in progress but the content already available is very good. Pretty much all the stuff for the AS spec is there but for the A level spec there's nothing relating to the programming project and some other spec points.

Concision 7/10: Mostly contains very relevant information which doesn't go off topic but can sometimes border on waffling. Some questions in the revision exercises can go beyond the scope of the spec but the resources are still reasonably concise.

Presentation 7/10: Both revision and exercise resources are in pdf format and are very easy to read. The text in the revision resources is laid out well and has relevant diagrams and images to enhance the appeal of said resources.

Accessibility 8/10: The questions in the exercises are similar in difficulty to new spec papers. Not hard to see why they're so accessible since they're taken from textbooks but even the revision resources can be easily understood.

Price 10/10: It's free but you have to register with your school email.

Final Score & Verdict: Contains a wealth of resources which are all free so definitely use as many as you can. Highly recommend the revision exercises as the new spec papers aren't enough at this stage and you need all the practice you can get. 7.4/10

Final Mr Fraser Computing Resources Score: 7.4/10


8: The Teacher

Content 10/10: Tons of resources covering pretty much every aspect of the spec, even the programming project.

Concision 8/10: Material covers all the content well but does go overboard sometimes in giving info not relevant to the spec i.e. content that you don't need to know!

Presentation 10/10: Very well presented. All the content on the PowerPoint Presentations is very good as it doesn't have too much info per slide. PDFs are laid out nicely as well. No faults here.

Accessibility 10/10: All the resources are very high quality and thus are very accessible. One should have no problem understanding the information delivered.

Price 1/10: £349 for 1 year or £649 for 2 years. Yes, you read that correctly. Before you lose all hope, this website only offers their resources to schools so there's no way for students to access them if their school have not bought them. So if you're one of the lucky ones who's school has got them, use them. Despite the high cost these resources are actually somewhat worth it (even though I reckon they're worth about £100 less).

Final Score & Verdict: If your school hasn't got this then I recommend you ask your Head of Computer Science or whoever is in charge to purchase these resources. There are better ones than this but if the school's paying it's worth it. 7.8/10

Final The Teacher Score: 7.8/10


7: Craig 'n' Dave Free & Premium

Free

Content 8/10: the free flipped classroom videos cover pretty much every single spec point in depth for the exam components and there's a couple of other free resources as well on top of that. It doesn't however, have anything for the programming project.

Concision 6/10: although the aforementioned videos cover the spec entirely, some of them (primarily those related with theory) include a bit of "waffling". The other free resources (which aren't a lot) are fairly concise.

Presentation 8/10: can't really judge videos on their presentation but the few free resources available are nicely laid out, maybe that's because there isn't a lot of info in them but whatever content is available is presented well.

Accessibility 9/10: Video is probably the most accessible way to deliver content, there's little to no reading and you just have to watch and listen carefully. The videos and the other resources deliver content in a very accessible way suitable for pretty much everyone.

Price 10/10: it's free.

Final Score & Verdict: Despite being 7th on the list this is the only resource that provides videos so I'd highly recommend you use them. The videos are all very short so you can easily watch them without getting bored and the other resources such as the cheat sheets for boolean algebra and pseudocode are both incredibly useful. As I always say, when resources are scarce use whatever you can find! 8.2/10

Premium

Content 10/10: Unlike the free resources, the premium ones have loads of guidance on the programming project in the form of videos, exemplars and more!

Concision 8/10: There is a Presentation containing pretty much every single definition in the spec which are essentially good summaries of each topic.

Presentation 8/10: Most of the premium resources available are well presented, a few of them could be better but on the whole they are all aesthetically appealing.

Accessibility 9/10: Aside from the videos, the premium resources (notable the Key Terminology Presentation and Cheat sheets aforementioned) are very easy to understand.

Price 5/10: £149 per year. Now for a student to afford that is insane. For those of you who done AQA GCSE Science before 2016, you'll most likely have heard of myGCSEscience. Those resources were in my opinion a lot better than these and yet it only costed about £30 for premium. Even now it only costs £49.90 for the subscription which is reasonable but £149 is quite frankly ridiculous. Again, the only way the vast majority of students will have access to these resources is if the school subscribes and lets the students use the resources for free.

Final Score & Verdict: If your school doesn't give you this for free, don't subscribe. I'm not saying it's a bad resource but with that price tag it's simply not worth it. The flipped classroom videos are free anyway along with some other resources but £149 for the other premium resources is about £100 too much to be worth it. Trust me, there's a lot of better resources you could buy for less than this. 8/10

Final Craig 'n' Dave Score: 8.1/10


6: Cambridge Elevate Student Book w/Enhanced Edition

Content 9/10: The textbook and enhanced edition deliver all the content of the spec in detail except for material on the coursework component.

Concision 7/10: The material doesn't go too much off the scope of the spec but it does contain a fair amount of waffling which is immediately obvious considering the textbook is over 300 pages!

Presentation 9/10: Very clear layout, good use of space on each page makes the textbook very easy to read. Includes images and diagrams to further enhance the aesthetic appeal. Same applies for the enhanced edition.

Accessibility 9/10: Surprisingly very accessible. Despite some waffling the info is not hard to understand. Both the enhanced edition and the textbook present content in an easy to grasp way.

Price 8/10: £28 for the student book and £32 for the enhanced edition included. Reasonable priced given that the book and enhanced edition are high quality.

Final Score & Verdict: This resource is very good, if it was a bit cheaper then it would be great. As textbooks go, there's room for improvement but if you can afford I'd say go for it. A bit iffy on the enhanced edition but if you can pay that extra £4 then why not. You could try and find it cheaper used on Amazon or Ebay. 8.4/10

Final Cambridge Elevate Student Book w/Enhanced Edition Score: 8.4/10

5: Hodder Education OCR A Level Computer Science & My Revision Notes

OCR A Level Computer Science Textbook

Content 10/10: This textbook is actually endorsed by OCR (not that that means much) so by default it covers it's entire course and yes it includes material on the coursework.

Concision 8/10: Not as long as the Cambridge Elevate Student Book which was over 300 pages but still has lot of useless information in it and is 270 pages long.

Presentation 9/10: Very clear layout, good use of space on each page makes the textbook very easy to read. Includes images and diagrams to further enhance the aesthetic appeal.

Accessibility 7/10: Has loads of errors which I think they've now fixed in the new edition or something, but judging by the textbook I have then I have to say it was really annoying finding so many errors in a resource that was supposedly endorsed by OCR.

Price 8/10: £31 for the textbook which is slightly overpriced in my opinion since the Cambridge one was only £28 (but I'd recommend this one over that). Well, I guess they can do that since they're endorsed by OCR. Don't worry though, a quick search on Ebay or Amazon and you can get this used for as little as £25.

Final Score & Verdict: If the price would be a bit lower this resource is a must buy in my opinion. If you're lucky enough to get it for free from your school then definitely use it, there's a lot of good stuff in here. 8.4/10

My Revision Notes Textbook

Content 9/10: This textbook isn't endorsed by OCR and it doesn't have anything for the coursework component. Heavily focused on the exam components which is OK for a revision guide sort of thing (although I don't consider it one).

Concision 8/10: Only 168 pages but still has the same style of delivering content as the other textbook. An improvement but just too much waffling to be honest.

Presentation 9/10: Again, very clear layout, good use of space on each page makes the textbook very easy to read. Includes images and diagrams to further enhance the aesthetic appeal. No faults here.

Accessibility 8/10: Has a few mistakes here and there and sometimes misses some content completely so it's hard get a good understanding of some topics as a whole. I guess that's why it's not endorsed by OCR.

Price 9/10: £17. Decent price for a fairly high quality resource. Hard to find anything cheaper on Ebay or Amazon since this is not as popular as the other textbook.

Final Score & Verdict: If this resource is supposed to be a revision guide, I wouldn't say it's great one but as a textbook it get's the job done in getting all the content across in it's own way (which can be unnecessarily long sometimes). Even though this is cheaper, I would recommend the other one as it fully supports the specification. 8.6/10

Final Hodder Education Series Score: 8.5/10


4: PG Online Textbook

Content 9/10: This textbook is endorsed by OCR as well but strangely misses out on the programming project.

Concision 9/10: Almost 100 pages longer than the Hodder Education textbook yet doesn't have any useless information and minimal waffling. It's just very detailed which is OK but personally I think it could've been shorter

Presentation 9/10: Same as the other textbooks. Very clear layout, good use of space on each page makes the textbook very easy to read. Includes images and diagrams to further enhance the aesthetic appeal.

Accessibility 8/10: Initially had a few mistakes which were corrected but is still a solid textbook that actually deserves an endorsement by OCR.

Price 8/10: £30 for the textbook which isn't bad at all. £1 cheaper than the Hodder Education one and is better in my opinion. Unfortunately, a quick search on Ebay or Amazon will not get you anything cheaper.

Final Score & Verdict: It's a great textbook, covers everything (apart from the programming project) in great detail. If I had to choose between this and the Hodder Education one it's a close call because both of them are very good but this one edges it for me. Again. if you're lucky enough to get one of these for free from your school you should definitely use it. 8.6/10

Final PG Online Textbook Score: 8.6/10

3: CGP OCR A Level Computer Science Revision Guide

Error 404: Not Found (For some reason CGP haven't got a revision guide for A level Computer Science but if they did, I reckon it would be amazing).

3: ZigZag Education Revision Guide & Course Companion

Revision Guide

Content 9/10: This one is a bit of a punt since the full A level revision guide is going to be released this October but judging by the AS revision guide (which is excellent), I think it may just include everything apart from the coursework component.

Concision 10/10: Very, very concise. Doesn't beat around the bush and just gives you all the information you need in minimal space. Definitely the best revision guide available right now (unfortunately, CGP haven't got one for A level Computer Science otherwise I think it would be equally good).

Presentation 10/10: A very unique way of displaying the information that works very well. Everything is separated into boxes that fill the page very nicely. Despite it being in black and white this revision guide is presented amazingly well.

Accessibility 10/10: Surprisingly easy to understand. Even though it gives the content you need to know without any waffling or introductions (which is great) it makes it very easy to digest the info via bullet points and short paragraphs.

Price 6/10: £79 for the AS guide and £119 for the A level guide. Obviously that's way too expensive for your average student to afford but this guide is absolutely brilliant so I would highly recommend that you ask your teacher to pre-order the A level revision guide coming out in a few weeks.

Final Score & Verdict: This is definitely by far the best paper resource out there. Beats all the textbooks in everything except price. I would highly recommend you get your school to get this resource because it's definitely worth it. 9/10

Course Companion

Content 9/10: This one is already available but doesn't have anything on the programming project either. Covers all other parts of the spec very well.

Concision 9/10: This resource uses more of a textbook approach in explaining things and is about 240 pages long which is shorter than all the other textbooks in this list. Again, very concise but can have a bit of waffling here and there.

Presentation 8/10: Generally displays the content well but not the presentation is not as good as the other textbooks in my opinion. Maybe it's because of its monochromatic images or simply because there's no colour whatsoever.

Accessibility 10/10: Quality of accessibility is pretty much the same as the revision guide. No complaints here.

Price 6/10: £119 for AS guide and £179 for the full A level. Again, it's way too expensive but if you can get your teacher to purchase it then go for it.

Final Score & Verdict: This is definitely one of the best paper resources out there. Very good but is unfortunately very expensive as well. Again, I would highly recommend you get your school to get this resource because it's definitely worth it. 8.4/10

Final ZigZag Education Resources Score: 8.7/10


2: Dynamic Learning Package

Content 10/10: The plethora of resources available in the package fully support the specification

Concision 10/10: Most of the resources are actually summary presentations of the Hodder Education textbook which condense all the important information from 270 pages in short slides.

Presentation 10/10: All the interactive activities, worksheets, tests and the summary presentations are extremely well presented. Can't fault anything here.

Accessibility 10/10: All the resources are very easy to understand, much more accessible than the textbook.

Price 5/10: Now all these wonderful resources come at a price. It's £400 for the package which is sort of crazy but these resources are excellent and a must buy for all schools providing this course.

Final Score & Verdict: The best online resource available plain and simple (that isn't endorsed by OCR for some reason). 9/10

Final Dynamic Learning Package Score: 9/10


1: OCR Past Papers

Content 10/10: Need I say more?

Concision 10/10: Markschemes are the best resource of all in my opinion. Clear, concise and get straight to the point. It simply tells you everything the examiners are looking for without any unnecessary information.

Presentation 10/10: As past papers go, there isn't much else you can improve here.

Accessibility 9/10: Going to have to give a slight downgrade here since OCR (along with pretty much every other exam board) are quite notorious for writing "evil" papers.

Price 10/10: They're free, duh.

Final Score & Verdict: It's absolutely essential to do past papers in order to succeed in the final exam. All the other resources on this list are irrelevant if you do not do all the past papers available, and yes that means both old H047/H447 and new H046/H446 spec ones. Don't make the mistake of thinking you can only do each paper once so you should start doing them in like March or something. Start NOW, I mean it. It doesn't matter if you have to do them more than once, if anything it'll help you understand the exam patterns and make it easy to memorise markschemes. Obviously skip the questions in the old spec papers that aren't relevant to the new spec but by all means do the rest.

Final OCR Past Papers Score: 9.8/10


(Cheeky) Honorable Mention

This blog: http://themuslimcompsciblog.blogspot.co.uk/

Anyway, enough self advertising. That's my list of the top 10 resources for OCR A level Computer Science that I have used personally, do you agree with it? Is there any resource I missed? Put your comments below and as always...

Hope this helps!
Last edited by TheMuslimCompSci; 4 months ago
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999tigger
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As Salamu Alaykum Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakatuh World!

As the title says this is a ranking of the top 10 resources for the H046/H446 spec. Now I must admit, I wasn't even sure there were 10 decent resources to put on this list but after a bit of digging I've found them.

So here's how this is going to work, each place in the ranking may be occupied by more than one resource (that may be part of the same series). They will all be ranked according to 5 indicators each rated out of 10 to give the resource a combined score out of 10 which will be followed by a final verdict:

Content: arguably the most important, a resource is no good if it doesn't cover the entire spec!

Concision: ranks resources according to how they deliver the content, not what the content is like the previous indicator. Basically, the less waffle the better!

Presentation: a good resource should be aesthetically appealing, even it has all the content it should lay out all the information in an easy to grasp form.

Accessibility: similar to the previous indicator but judges resources according to how accessible is the information itself, not the presentation of the information. In other words, how easy is it to understand the content delivered.

Price: no matter how good a resource is, if it's expensive chances are you may not even use it so the price of a resource is essential in this ranking.

The links to each resource will be in the title. Anyway, without further ado, let's do this!


10: Teach-ICT For Computer Science

Content 7/10: Doesn't cover the entire spec. Only covers material for the Computer Systems and Computing Principles exams and a bit for the programmming exam. No material for the coursework component either.

Concision 8/10: The content available on the website is fairly straight to the point. It has enough info to allow a good understanding but not too much so that it just turns into waffle which is fairly consistent throughout the whole website.

Presentation 9/10: Despite presenting all the info on a website, the content is very well displayed with short paragraphs/bullet points accompanied by images making this resource very appealing.

Accessibility 9/10: Uses a straightforward approach in delivering material which is very easy to understand. No flowery language or technical terminology, takes you through the theory step by step.

Price 3/10: £145 per year. Everything on the website was initially free about a year or so ago but back then it was still in its development phase I suppose. Anyway, now that it's complete they decided to add a massive price tag to it which is clearly unreasonable for your average student. Subscription gives you access to ALL the resources on the website but there's not much for OCR A level Computer Science for it to be worth it. About 90% of it is for GCSE so there's honestly no point in investing in this resource. The only way the vast majority of students will have access to these resources is if the school subscribes and lets the students use the resources for free.

Final Score & Verdict: If your school doesn't give you this for free, don't subscribe. There's simply not enough material on this website catered to the A level spec for it to be worth £145. Even if you don't have access to this website don't worry, you're not missing out on much. 7.2/10

Final Teach-ICT For Computer Science Score: 7.2/10


9: Mr Fraser Computing Resources

Content 5/10: The site is a work in progress but the content already available is very good. Pretty much all the stuff for the AS spec is there but for the A level spec there's nothing relating to the programming project and some other spec points.

Concision 7/10: Mostly contains very relevant information which doesn't go off topic but can sometimes border on waffling. Some questions in the revision exercises can go beyond the scope of the spec but the resources are still reasonably concise.

Presentation 7/10: Both revision and exercise resources are in pdf format and are very easy to read. The text in the revision resources is laid out well and has relevant diagrams and images to enhance the appeal of said resources.

Accessibility 8/10: The questions in the exercises are similar in difficulty to new spec papers. Not hard to see why they're so accessible since they're taken from textbooks but even the revision resources can be easily understood.

Price 10/10: It's free but you have to register with your school email.

Final Score & Verdict: Contains a wealth of resources which are all free so definitely use as many as you can. Highly recommend the revision exercises as the new spec papers aren't enough at this stage and you need all the practice you can get. 7.4/10

Final Mr Fraser Computing Resources Score: 7.4/10


8: The Teacher

Content 10/10: Tons of resources covering pretty much every aspect of the spec, even the programming project.

Concision 8/10: Material covers all the content well but does go overboard sometimes in giving info not relevant to the spec i.e. content that you don't need to know!

Presentation 10/10: Very well presented. All the content on the PowerPoint Presentations is very good as it doesn't have too much info per slide. PDFs are laid out nicely as well. No faults here.

Accessibility 10/10: All the resources are very high quality and thus are very accessible. One should have no problem understanding the information delivered.

Price 1/10: £349 for 1 year or £649 for 2 years. Yes, you read that correctly. Before you lose all hope, this website only offers their resources to schools so there's no way for students to access them if their school have not bought them. So if you're one of the lucky ones who's school has got them, use them. Despite the high cost these resources are actually somewhat worth it (even though I reckon they're worth about £100 less).

Final Score & Verdict: If your school hasn't got this then I recommend you ask your Head of Computer Science or whoever is in charge to purchase these resources. There are better ones than this but if the school's paying it's worth it. 7.8/10

Final The Teacher Score: 7.8/10


7: Craig 'n' Dave Free & Premium

Free

Content 8/10: the free flipped classroom videos cover pretty much every single spec point in depth for the exam components and there's a couple of other free resources as well on top of that. It doesn't however, have anything for the programming project.

Concision 6/10: although the aforementioned videos cover the spec entirely, some of them (primarily those related with theory) include a bit of "waffling". The other free resources (which aren't a lot) are fairly concise.

Presentation 8/10: can't really judge videos on their presentation but the few free resources available are nicely laid out, maybe that's because there isn't a lot of info in them but whatever content is available is presented well.

Accessibility 9/10: Video is probably the most accessible way to deliver content, there's little to no reading and you just have to watch and listen carefully. The videos and the other resources deliver content in a very accessible way suitable for pretty much everyone.

Price 10/10: it's free.

Final Score & Verdict: Despite being 7th on the list this is the only resource that provides videos so I'd highly recommend you use them. The videos are all very short so you can easily watch them without getting bored and the other resources such as the cheat sheets for boolean algebra and pseudocode are both incredibly useful. As I always say, when resources are scarce use whatever you can find! 8.2/10

Premium

Content 10/10: Unlike the free resources, the premium ones have loads of guidance on the programming project in the form of videos, exemplars and more!

Concision 8/10: There is a Presentation containing pretty much every single definition in the spec which are essentially good summaries of each topic.

Presentation 8/10: Most of the premium resources available are well presented, a few of them could be better but on the whole they are all aesthetically appealing.

Accessibility 9/10: Aside from the videos, the premium resources (notable the Key Terminology Presentation and Cheat sheets aforementioned) are very easy to understand.

Price 5/10: £149 per year. Now for a student to afford that is insane. For those of you who done AQA GCSE Science before 2016, you'll most likely have heard of myGCSEscience. Those resources were in my opinion a lot better than these and yet it only costed about £30 for premium. Even now it only costs £49.90 for the subscription which is reasonable but £149 is quite frankly ridiculous. Again, the only way the vast majority of students will have access to these resources is if the school subscribes and lets the students use the resources for free.

Final Score & Verdict: If your school doesn't give you this for free, don't subscribe. I'm not saying it's a bad resource but with that price tag it's simply not worth it. The flipped classroom videos are free anyway along with some other resources but £149 for the other premium resources is about £100 too much to be worth it. Trust me, there's a lot of better resources you could buy for less than this. 8/10

Final Craig 'n' Dave Score: 8.1/10


6: Cambridge Elevate Student Book w/Enhanced Edition

Content 9/10: The textbook and enhanced edition deliver all the content of the spec in detail except for material on the coursework component.

Concision 7/10: The material doesn't go too much off the scope of the spec but it does contain a fair amount of waffling which is immediately obvious considering the textbook is over 300 pages!

Presentation 9/10: Very clear layout, good use of space on each page makes the textbook very easy to read. Includes images and diagrams to further enhance the aesthetic appeal. Same applies for the enhanced edition.

Accessibility 9/10: Surprisingly very accessible. Despite some waffling the info is not hard to understand. Both the enhanced edition and the textbook present content in an easy to grasp way.

Price 8/10: £28 for the student book and £32 for the enhanced edition included. Reasonable priced given that the book and enhanced edition are high quality.

Final Score & Verdict: This resource is very good, if it was a bit cheaper then it would be great. As textbooks go, there's room for improvement but if you can afford I'd say go for it. A bit iffy on the enhanced edition but if you can pay that extra £4 then why not. You could try and find it cheaper used on Amazon or Ebay. 8.4/10

Final Cambridge Elevate Student Book w/Enhanced Edition Score: 8.4/10

5: Hodder Education OCR A Level Computer Science & My Revision Notes

OCR A Level Computer Science Textbook

Content 10/10: This textbook is actually endorsed by OCR (not that that means much) so by default it covers it's entire course and yes it includes material on the coursework.

Concision 8/10: Not as long as the Cambridge Elevate Student Book which was over 300 pages but still has lot of useless information in it and is 270 pages long.

Presentation 9/10: Very clear layout, good use of space on each page makes the textbook very easy to read. Includes images and diagrams to further enhance the aesthetic appeal.

Accessibility 7/10: Has loads of errors which I think they've now fixed in the new edition or something, but judging by the textbook I have then I have to say it was really annoying finding so many errors in a resource that was supposedly endorsed by OCR.

Price 8/10: £31 for the textbook which is slightly overpriced in my opinion since the Cambridge one was only £28 (but I'd recommend this one over that). Well, I guess they can do that since they're endorsed by OCR. Don't worry though, a quick search on Ebay or Amazon and you can get this used for as little as £25.

Final Score & Verdict: If the price would be a bit lower this resource is a must buy in my opinion. If you're lucky enough to get it for free from your school then definitely use it, there's a lot of good stuff in here. 8.4/10

My Revision Notes Textbook

Content 9/10: This textbook isn't endorsed by OCR and it doesn't have anything for the coursework component. Heavily focused on the exam components which is OK for a revision guide sort of thing (although I don't consider it one).

Concision 8/10: Only 168 pages but still has the same style of delivering content as the other textbook. An improvement but just too much waffling to be honest.

Presentation 9/10: Again, very clear layout, good use of space on each page makes the textbook very easy to read. Includes images and diagrams to further enhance the aesthetic appeal. No faults here.

Accessibility 8/10: Has a few mistakes here and there and sometimes misses some content completely so it's hard get a good understanding of some topics as a whole. I guess that's why it's not endorsed by OCR.

Price 9/10: £17. Decent price for a fairly high quality resource. Hard to find anything cheaper on Ebay or Amazon since this is not as popular as the other textbook.

Final Score & Verdict: If this resource is supposed to be a revision guide, I wouldn't say it's great one but as a textbook it get's the job done in getting all the content across in it's own way (which can be unnecessarily long sometimes). Even though this is cheaper, I would recommend the other one as it fully supports the specification. 8.6/10

Final Hodder Education Series Score: 8.5/10


4: PG Online Textbook

Content 9/10: This textbook is endorsed by OCR as well but strangely misses out on the programming project.

Concision 9/10: Almost 100 pages longer than the Hodder Education textbook yet doesn't have any useless information and minimal waffling. It's just very detailed which is OK but personally I think it could've been shorter

Presentation 9/10: Same as the other textbooks. Very clear layout, good use of space on each page makes the textbook very easy to read. Includes images and diagrams to further enhance the aesthetic appeal.

Accessibility 8/10: Initially had a few mistakes which were corrected but is still a solid textbook that actually deserves an endorsement by OCR.

Price 8/10: £30 for the textbook which isn't bad at all. £1 cheaper than the Hodder Education one and is better in my opinion. Unfortunately, a quick search on Ebay or Amazon will not get you anything cheaper.

Final Score & Verdict: It's a great textbook, covers everything (apart from the programming project) in great detail. If I had to choose between this and the Hodder Education one it's a close call because both of them are very good but this one edges it for me. Again. if you're lucky enough to get one of these for free from your school you should definitely use it. 8.6/10

Final PG Online Textbook Score: 8.6/10

3: CGP OCR A Level Computer Science Revision Guide

Error 404: Not Found (For some reason CGP haven't got a revision guide for A level Computer Science but if they did, I reckon it would be amazing).

3: ZigZag Education Revision Guide & Course Companion

Revision Guide

Content 9/10: This one is a bit of a punt since the full A level revision guide is going to be released this October but judging by the AS revision guide (which is excellent), I think it may just include everything apart from the coursework component.

Concision 10/10: Very, very concise. Doesn't beat around the bush and just gives you all the information you need in minimal space. Definitely the best revision guide available right now (unfortunately, CGP haven't got one for A level Computer Science otherwise I think it would be equally good).

Presentation 10/10: A very unique way of displaying the information that works very well. Everything is separated into boxes that fill the page very nicely. Despite it being in black and white this revision guide is presented amazingly well.

Accessibility 10/10: Surprisingly easy to understand. Even though it gives the content you need to know without any waffling or introductions (which is great) it makes it very easy to digest the info via bullet points and short paragraphs.

Price 6/10: £79 for the AS guide and £119 for the A level guide. Obviously that's way too expensive for your average student to afford but this guide is absolutely brilliant so I would highly recommend that you ask your teacher to pre-order the A level revision guide coming out in a few weeks.

Final Score & Verdict: This is definitely by far the best paper resource out there. Beats all the textbooks in everything except price. I would highly recommend you get your school to get this resource because it's definitely worth it. 9/10

Course Companion

Content 9/10: This one is already available but doesn't have anything on the programming project either. Covers all other parts of the spec very well.

Concision 9/10: This resource uses more of a textbook approach in explaining things and is about 240 pages long which is shorter than all the other textbooks in this list. Again, very concise but can have a bit of waffling here and there.

Presentation 8/10: Generally displays the content well but not the presentation is not as good as the other textbooks in my opinion. Maybe it's because of its monochromatic images or simply because there's no colour whatsoever.

Accessibility 10/10: Quality of accessibility is pretty much the same as the revision guide. No complaints here.

Price 6/10: £119 for AS guide and £179 for the full A level. Again, it's way too expensive but if you can get your teacher to purchase it then go for it.

Final Score & Verdict: This is definitely one of the best paper resources out there. Very good but is unfortunately very expensive as well. Again, I would highly recommend you get your school to get this resource because it's definitely worth it. 8.4/10

Final ZigZag Education Resources Score: 8.7/10


2: Dynamic Learning Package

Content 10/10: The plethora of resources available in the package fully support the specification

Concision 10/10: Most of the resources are actually summary presentations of the Hodder Education textbook which condense all the important information from 270 pages in short slides.

Presentation 10/10: All the interactive activities, worksheets, tests and the summary presentations are extremely well presented. Can't fault anything here.

Accessibility 10/10: All the resources are very easy to understand, much more accessible than the textbook.

Price 5/10: Now all these wonderful resources come at a price. It's £400 for the package which is sort of crazy but these resources are excellent and a must buy for all schools providing this course.

Final Score & Verdict: The best online resource available plain and simple (that isn't endorsed by OCR for some reason). 9/10

Final Dynamic Learning Package Score: 9/10


1: OCR Past Papers

Content 10/10: Need I say more?

Concision 10/10: Markschemes are the best resource of all in my opinion. Clear, concise and get straight to the point. It simply tells you everything the examiners are looking for without any unnecessary information.

Presentation 10/10: As past papers go, there isn't much else you can improve here.

Accessibility 9/10: Going to have to give a slight downgrade here since OCR (along with pretty much every other exam board) are quite notorious for writing "evil" papers.

Price 10/10: They're free, duh.

Final Score & Verdict: It's absolutely essential to do past papers in order to succeed in the final exam. All the other resources on this list are irrelevant if you do not do all the past papers available, and yes that means both old H047/H447 and new H046/H446 spec ones. Don't make the mistake of thinking you can only do each paper once so you should start doing them in like March or something. Start NOW, I mean it. It doesn't matter if you have to do them more than once, if anything it'll help you understand the exam patterns and make it easy to memorise markschemes. Obviously skip the questions in the old spec papers that aren't relevant to the new spec but by all means do the rest.

Final OCR Past Papers Score: 9.8/10


(Cheeky) Honorable Mention

This blog: http://themuslimcompsciblog.blogspot.co.uk/

Anyway, enough self advertising. That's my list of the top 10 resources for OCR A level Computer Science that I have used personally, do you agree with it? Is there any resource I missed? Put your comments below and as always...

Hope this helps!
Just answered a thread on someone who doesnt have the textbook, so this will be useful for them. thanks for taking the time to post.
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TheMuslimCompSci
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Just answered a thread on someone who doesnt have the textbook, so this will be useful for them. thanks for taking the time to post.
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