The WGSS Computer Department is the largest and most diverse collection of courses offered by a public high school in the province.  Students have the unique opportunity to choose from over 24 industry-level courses specific to computer and digital technology.  Learn more about our department with our feature video here.

Entry to computer courses is determined by prerequisites, not your grade level.  Students who want to take a course without the required prerequisite must have the permission of the department. For more information on stand-alone courses, see individual course description. 

** All Computer Department courses use special Ministry of Education course codes, therefore the names of course codes may not match what you see on your transcripts**

Geek Level 100%

Courses Offered

Introductory Courses

Prerequisite:  none

Students learn photo editing, create a multimedia presentation and make a role-playing game.  The graphics and presentation skills learned are useful in other high school courses.

Prerequisite:  none

Students taking Computers Studies 8 in the Gator Pod program addresses the same learning outcomes as students in the regular Computer Studies 8 elective course, however it will delve in deeper as this is a two-term course.  Standard content for the program includes basic file management, photo editing, 3D modeling, and game programming/coding.  The Gator Pod 8 Computer Studies integrates learning with the other components of Gator Pod 8 with a focus on integration of course content and technology.  Further units will include internet safety, social media skills, presentation skills, video editing, and modern design layout.  Students are expected to collaborate, hone their oral presentation skills, and reflect on their own learning to further develop areas of interest as it relates to technology.  Students completing this course will be prepared to take other computer courses in subsequent years.

With an emphasis on coding, Computer Apps & Coding explores a wide variety of topics. You will learn to code in Python, design a webpage with HTML/CSS, create a light show using Arduino, design a video game level using Unreal, and program a game in the Unity Game Engine. You will also learn image editing with Photoshop, video editing in Premiere, and vector design with Illustrator. Students must complete this course (or Graphics) to advance to senior computer classes.

Using the tools of professional designers, students will create and edit 2-D and 3-D graphics. Students will focus on three main areas: Video production, 3D modeling/printing/sculpting and Graphic Design. Students must complete this course (or Computer Apps) to advance to senior computer classes.

3D Graphics & Sculpting

Prerequisite: Computer Apps or Computer Graphics or permission of instructor. Students are introduced to the key aspects of 3D Graphics using computers and industry standard software. Students will focus on three main areas in the CG field – 3D modeling and printing, high-resolution Digital Sculpting and Video Game Design.

Prerequisite: 3D Graphics Level 1.

3D Graphics L2 builds on the knowledge learned in 3D Graphics L1. Topics include advanced modeling, rigging, texturing, 3D sculpting and animation. The second half of this course is treated as an independent study that lets students choose areas of interest to focus their studies on. Students can also get access to the first 4 months of the Think Tank Online curriculum (a $4000 value).

Prerequisite: Computer Apps or Computer Graphics or permission of instructor

Digital Sculpting is a senior level course that will enable students to create high-resolution models similar to those in movies and video games. Study will focus on using 3D skills along with art skills and a Wacom tablet to “digitally sculpt” a mesh into a photorealistic model. We focus on several different types of digital sculpting ranging from character busts to full character sculpts & wearable jewelry. Students will have several opportunities to use our 3D printers to print their own creations.

Prerequisite:  Computer Apps or Computer Graphics or permission of instructor.

Video Game Design builds on the knowledge learned in 3D Graphics Level 1 and allows students to delve further into a new, very specific area of the animation field.  Using the Unreal Editor, students will learn how to design and create their own playable maps.

Prerequisite:  Video Game Design Level 1

Students build on the skills learned in VGD Level 1 and take design to the next level.  Different styles of maps are explored and the maps that are created are much more complex.  Advanced topics include special effects, Kismet scripting, Matinee programming and static mesh creation. Students are welcome to explore other game engines aside from UT.

Coding & Programming

Prerequisite: Grade 11 and 12 students, Grade 10 students with strong math skills and permission of instructor.

Students will explore how computers represent numbers, images, and text as digital information and how physical infrastructure, protocols, and cryptography allow the secure transfer of digital information across the internet. The fundamentals of programming are also covered using JavaScript and/or C. Students develop applications to solve a variety of problems including handling “big data”. Students demonstrate their learning through a variety of practical programming problems and tests. Students have the option to write the AP exam in May (approximate fee $135). All AP courses are academically approved Grade 12 courses for post-secondary admissions.

Prerequisite: Grade 11/12 or permission of instructor. 

Computer Science 12 is the perfect course for students interested in a career in computer science. It is also an excellent complement for anyone planning to enter sciences or math at a post-secondary institution. Knowing how to code is becoming key skill for data manipulation in all sciences.

Computer Science 12 teaches students how to use code to solve real-world problems. Using Python, students learn the fundamentals of data types and structures, conditional statements, multidimensional arrays, and modularizing code using functions. Students are also introduced to a variety of algorithms to sort and search data and solve problems recursively, such as the Fibonacci sequence or factorials. In addition, students apply their programming knowledge to search for data on websites, collect and display data using APIs and GUIs, and to code games such as Tic-Tac-Toe and develop simulations such as Conway’s Game of Life.

Prerequisite:  Computer Apps or Computer Graphics or permission of instructor

Learn how to build games using the popular game engine, Unity.  Students are introduced to the fundamentals with a simple 2D game and then progress through the history of video games by re-creating Pong, BreakOut and Space Invaders.

 

Prerequisite:  Game Coding Level 1 (or permission of instructor)

Building on the skills introduced in Level 1, students create more elaborate games, increasing their understanding of Unity and programming.  After completing Tetris, students have the freedom to expand their skills and be creative by designing their own, original games.

Graphic Design & Production

Prerequisite: Computer Graphics (preferred) or Computer Apps with permission of instructor

This course allows students to design a variety of objects on computers and then using the latest fabrication tools (3D printers, CNC machines, vinyl cutters, laser engravers & large format printing) they can actually create that object. Objects can be made out of a variety of materials including wood, plastic and metal. Special focus on designing and “finishing” props with various forms of distressing and weathering using techniques developed in the TV/film industry.

Prerequisite:  Computer Apps or Computer Graphics or permission of instructor

Graphic Design is a course that allows student creativity to flourish.  Using industry standard software, students will learn principals of modern digital design as it relates to logo creation, t-shirt design, websites, brochures, advertising, icon development, app user interfaces, photo editing, product packaging and more.  In addition, students will get the opportunity to use the school’s laser engraver, vinyl cutter, and large format printer to design and produce some amazing creations.

** OUT OF BLOCK COURSE **
Meets Tues after school 3:00pm-4:30pm and Thurs mornings 7:30am-8:30am

Prerequisite:  Grade 11 or 12. Graphic Design or 3D Fabrication, or permission of instructor 

Print Shop is a hands-on course that teaches students how to operate a working Print Shop based out of the school.  In addition to communicating with actual clients, students will learn basic through advanced skills in the design and creation of large-scale prints, vinyl applications, stickers, banners, canvas prints and more.   Some of this course may require time outside of the standard timetable.

Video/Audio Production

Prerequisite: Computer Apps or Graphics or permission of instructor


This course will introduce students to the different components involved in the production of commercial audio production including audio engineering, podcasting and music creation. Using industry standard software and supplied recording hardware, students will have the opportunity to explore audio recording and produce commercials, podcasts, and their own musical creations.

Prerequisite:  Computer Apps or Computer Graphics or permission of instructor

This course will introduce students to the different components involved in the production of commercial videography including idea development, scriptwriting, production scheduling, camera techniques and video editing. Using industry standard software and supplied video cameras, students will have the opportunity to explore visual effects & motion graphics and produce commercials, music videos, documentaries, and short films.

Prerequisite:  Video Production Level 1

This course is project oriented, extending from the concepts learned in Video Production Level 1.  Students refine, advance, and expand skills with a focus on visual effects, film contests, and further development of video production interest.

Prerequisite: Video Production Level 1

Visual Effects 12 is designed for students who wish to continue in the world of video production with a sole focus on post-production effects and workflow.  Students will use Adobe After Effects and other industry-standard programs to create a variety of effects including computer generated effects, practical effects, and kinetic typography. 

Other

Prerequisite: Grade 11 and 12 students Computers skills are a requirement for almost any job. This course provides students with those essential skills. Students will become proficient in Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint and will be eligible to take the Microsoft Office Certification Exam. In addition, students will learn the fundamentals of the Internet including how to create a website, online forms and surveys. Students will also learn to manipulate and create images in Photoshop and create presentation documents using InDesign.
Prerequisite: Computer Apps or Computer Graphics or permission of instructor Computer Repair 12 provides technical training on hardware and operating systems. Students will combine theory and hands-on experience in constructing, troubleshooting and repairing computers. Other areas of focus: small networks, emerging technologies and high-tech living. Upon successful completion of the course students should have sufficient knowledge to apply for the A+ Certification Test for computer technicians.

Prerequisite: None

Digital Communications 11 will focus on issues, impacts and opportunities related to digital communication. Through discussion, individual/group projects, in class activities, creative assignments and other inquiry strategies, students will explore ideas and controversy around social media, journalism and digital marketing. Students will also investigate the ethics, legalities and sociological impacts of digital communication. Overall, students will learn about modern use of technology including digital citizenship, etiquette and literacy. The course takes a deep look at how culture, media and technology intertwine. There is no prior computer knowledge necessary to take this course. instead, students will be using the technology accessible to them or in the classroom. Additionally, there are no prerequisites or prior computer knowledge necessary to take this course.

Jr Students: Graphics or Apps?
Sr Students
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