We consulted with teachers, higher education representatives, subject expert groups and other key stakeholders to gain feedback and insight on our suite of Edexcel International GCSE qualifications.
The feedback we received through the consultation process highlighted that Edexcel International GCSEs are valued by teachers and learners across the world. It indicated that you would welcome some updates to the qualification suite, rather than large scale changes, including more internationally relevant content. You also requested a grading scale that provides learners with the best possible progression pathways to A levels, International A Levels and university.
Updated Edexcel International GCSE qualifications
In response to your feedback, we have retained the best elements of the current Edexcel International GCSE qualifications that you have told us you value. In addition, we have introduced more international content, including the addition of further international content topics and the use of culturally sensitive, local contexts where possible. We have also ensured that you can follow a content route that is appropriate for your learners. This is to ensure that these qualifications are even more relevant and engaging for students around the world, allowing for learning in a local context to a global standard. We will also update the content of the qualifications so that they reflect the latest thinking in each subject.
With the introduction of a new 9–1 grading scale for GCSEs in England, the A* grade available for the current Edexcel International GCSEs does not neatly align with the top grade 9.
The new grade 9 represents a new level of attainment and has been introduced to differentiate your top performing students. The bottom of the grade 7 aligns with the bottom of the grade A. There’s also greater differentiation in the middle range of grades, with grades 4 to 5 being equivalent to the old grade B and grade C. The bottom of the grade 4 aligns with the bottom of the grade C. The bottom of the grade 1 aligns with the bottom of the grade G.
We are provding you with a wider range of teaching and learning materials, resources and training to support the best possible learner outcomes. Examples of support available for some subjects include: schemes of work, getting started guides, exemplar materials, comprehensive textbooks and interactive resources, digital services and tailored Edexcel International GCSE teacher training. This complements the wider Pearson support available for Edexcel qualifications, such as ResultsPlus, ResultsPlus Direct, and Exam Wizard.
Through the consultation process, you expressed a preference for the single introduction of a new grading scale so the full updated Edexcel International GCSE 9–1 suite was available for first teaching in September 2017, with first assessment in May/June 2019 (optional first asssessment in June 2018 for Maths and English). This ensured a structured transition over to the refreshed specifications with more preparation time and dedicated teaching and learning resources to support the effective delivery of these updated qualifications in time for first teaching.