Department | Home Economics2021-01-18T21:47:48+00:00

Department | Home Economics



Mrs. J. McBride
Head of Department (Acting)
Mrs. K. Rafferty
Mrs. L. Winter

Subject Information

In Home Economics, pupils have the opportunity to explore real life situations related to health and nutrition, family life and independent living. It is a practical subject that promotes and enhances the wellbeing of individuals, families and communities through understanding food choice, nutritional health, consumer issues and relationships.

The subject combines aspects of science, nutrition, cooking, relationships and consumerism. Students learn about the inter-relationships between diet, health, home and family, as well as the choice and management of resources.

Our main aims are:

  • To nurture pupils so that they become confident, caring and responsible citizens

  • To develop knowledge and understanding of current nutritional advice and apply this within the context of diet and lifestyle.

  • To promote a positive attitude towards health and wellbeing.

  • To enable pupils to develop initiative and cooperation to work with others.

  • To encourage inventiveness, originality and academic rigour.

  • To develop analytical skills.

  • To develop a critical approach to government initiatives regarding eating habits and trends.

  • To help pupils adapt to rapid technological changes and the growth of scientific knowledge.

  • To promote cross-curricular links, and links with other subjects in the school curriculum.

  • To provide pupils with the skills and knowledge which they can apply to gain useful and relevant qualifications.

Studying Home Economics can develop a range of skills and these include:

  • Practical skills

  • Analytical skills

  • Independent thinking skills

  • Research skills

  • Communication and listening skills

  • ICT skills

  • Teamwork skills

  • Time management skills

  • Leadership skills

  • Resource management skills

  • Creativity skills

  • Decision making skills

  • Problem solving skills

Key Stage 3

Year 8

Pupils are taught a range of units which include: safety and kitchen hygiene; the cooker and use of equipment; the importance of breakfast; the family; meal planning using the Eatwell Guide and 8 tips for eating well; food safety and storage; cereal, fruit and dairy products. All pupils will develop their practical skills throughout the year as they will make a variety of dishes in groups and individually such as fruits salad, soda bread pizza, shortbread, coleslaw, scones and chocolate cupcakes. They also have the opportunity to develop and apply ICT skills such as producing tables of results and graphs when completing various activities in lessons.

Year 9

Pupils are taught a range of units which include: The importance of reducing fast food in the diet; fibre; salt; fat; sugar; the life cycle – focusing on the needs of people; vegetarian diets; convenience foods; food packaging and food miles. Pupils continue to develop their practical skills as they will make a variety of dishes such as apple crumble, wheaten bread, apple muffins, pasta Bolognese, Quorn stir-fry, omelette, risotto and raspberry buns.

Year 10

Pupils are taught a range of units which include: Bone health – calcium, vitamin D and osteoporosis; blood health – iron, vitamin C and anaemia; consumerism; Fairtrade; Foods from around the world.  Pupils continue to develop their practical skills as they will make a variety of dishes such as pasta bake, chicken fajitas, apple slice, pizza, chili con carne, banana muffins, meatballs, leek and potato soup, sweet and sour chicken and cookies.

GCSE Home Economics: Food and Nutrition

This specification allows students to progress from KS3 Home Economics to Advanced Level Home Economics and other subject-related courses, where appropriate.

The examination board is CCEA. The GCSE is a two-year linear qualification with two assessments to complete by the end of year 12. These are:

Component 1: Food and Nutrition

This is the written examination which is worth 50% of the overall qualification. Students will cover topics that are all related to food including nutritional importance throughout life, meal planning, special diets, using resources wisely, methods of payment, ways of buying food, food safety, food origins and processing and food labelling. The examination is completed at the end of year 12.

Component 2: Practical Food and Nutrition (Controlled assessment task)

Pupils will research and write a written report on a topic chosen by the examination board. The task title will change each year. It is worth 50% of the overall qualification. This encourages students to adopt a critical and analytical approach to decision-making and problem-solving in relation to home economics. It also encourages them to develop as effective and independent learners.

Subject website:

Specification link:

AS/A2 Level Nutrition and Food Science

This is a new specification which adopts a modular structure. Candidates are required to study two units for the AS course and a further two units for the full Advanced GCE (A2) course. All units are compulsory. A2 1 offers a choice of options and a research project which is internally assessed.

AS Level Content

Unit AS 1: Principles of Nutrition

This unit requires the study of macronutrients (protein, fat and carbohydrates) and micronutrients (vitamins and minerals) and other dietary constituents. They also study nutritional requirements and current dietary recommendations for each life stage, for example, pregnancy, infancy, adults and the elderly. The assessment for this unit is a written examination that includes both short answer and extended writing questions.

Unit AS 2: Diet, Lifestyle and Health

This unit requires the study of current research in relation to diet, lifestyle and health including: cardiovascular disease, obesity, diabetes and cancer. Eating patterns, energy and energy balance and physical activity guidelines for children and adults are also studied. The assessment is a written examination that includes both short answer and extended writing questions.

A2 Level Content

Unit A2 1 Option A: Food Security and Sustainability
This unit examines consumer behaviour when making food purchasing decisions and considers the issues and implications of consumer food choice.


Unit A2 1 Option B: Food  Safety and Quality
This unit explores securing a safe food supply from the primary producer to the consumer.

Unit A2 2: Research Project
This unit requires the submission of a report on a research project of the student’s own choice. The chosen research area should come from AS 1, AS 2 or A2 1. The project gives students opportunities to demonstrate appropriate knowledge, understanding and skills demanded by the process.

AS 1: Principles of Nutrition – 50% of AS, 20% of A Level
AS 2: Diet, Lifestyle and Health – 50% of AS, 20% of A Level

A2 1: Option A or B outlined above – 30% of A Level
A2 2: Research Project – 30% of A Level

The examination board is CCEA.


Specification link:

The study of Home Economics at GCSE and AS/A2 level can present career opportunities for pupils who may be interested in the following fields of study:

  • Food technology – product development;

  • Public Health Nutritionist;

  • Environmental Health Officer;

  • Dietetics;

  • Food Management and Supply;

  • Quality Management;

  • Catering and hospitality industry – chefs, management;

  • Health education;

  • Media studies;

  • Consumer studies – trading standards, consumer legislation;

  • Advertising and marketing;

  • Teaching;

  • Health and social services – administration, nursing, child care

  • Mary Berry (Television presenter and Author)

  • Gillian McKeith (Television presenter, nutritionist and writer)

Department Blog Posts

2408, 2021

Excellent Results at RSA

By |August 24th, 2021|Categories: Agriculture, Announcements, Art & Design, Biology, Business Studies, Chemistry, Computing, Engineering, English, Geography, Government & Politics, Health & Social Care, History, Home Economics, Mathematics, Modern Foreign Languages, Moving Image Art, Music, News, Physical Education, Physics, Psychology, Religious Studies, Science, Sociology, Spanish, Technology & Design, Theatre Studies, Travel & Tourism|0 Comments

Excellent Results at RSA The wait finally ended for pupils of The Royal School, Armagh as they collected their A Level and their GCSE results on Tuesday 10 and [...]

2603, 2021


By |March 26th, 2021|Categories: Chemistry, English, News, Physics, Science|Tags: , |0 Comments

CONGRATULATIONS TO LUCY ADDIS - WINNER OF THE SCHOOLS SCIENCE WRITING COMPETITION MICHAELMAS TERM 2020 Pictured: Lucy alongside The Headmaster, Mr. Montgomery with her certificate and published article [...]

1402, 2021

Cyberfirst Girls Competition 2021 – Online Round

By |February 14th, 2021|Categories: Computing, News|Tags: , , , , , |0 Comments

Introduction For the third year running, The Royal School Armagh has participated in the GCHQ's annual 'CyberFirst Girls Competition'. Last year, we were delighted to reach the regional finals [...]

212, 2020

House Competition: Winners of the Pumpkin Competition announced

By |December 2nd, 2020|Categories: News|0 Comments

Congratulations to the following pupils who won house points for their respective Houses: 1. Emily Dunwoody (D’Arcy) 2. Edythe Qua (Armstrong) 3. Reuben McDowell (Rokeby) 4. Laura Lu (Beresford) [...]


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