General Qualifications Bulletin - International - Issue 21 | Pearson qualifications

General Qualifications Bulletin - International - Issue 21

2 December 2021

Dear Colleague,

Whilst it has been a quieter few weeks in terms of examination announcements, I know it has continued to be busy for you all in schools. We have kept this edition of the bulletin shorter, but it has got all the key links and information you need. Please do share this email with colleagues in your school to make sure that this important information reaches everyone that it needs to. 

Read more

I know that many of you have been asking us about what information is still to come from us or from the Department for Education and Ofqual. Below are some of the key links that you will need and also some things that are still to come.

Summer 2022 support page
Summer 2022 Frequently Asked Questions 
JCQ Advanced Information Examples and Frequently Asked Questions Ofqual Contingency Arrangements for UK qualifications

I expect that there may be more information to share with you in the coming weeks and months about advance information and contingency arrangements for 2022. Advance information will still be released no later than 7 February 2022. We will continue to keep you updated as and when new information is released via all the channels we have available. 

Continue to visit our dedicated support page, and follow us on Twitter (@ PearsonEdexcel) and Facebook to keep up to date. If you would like to speak to us directly, you can get in touch with any questions via our contact form, or by calling the relevant team for your role.   

Hayley White
Assessment Director 

We strongly encourage you to read the details of these arrangements in full in the consultation outcome. Many of these may feel familiar to the approach used for Teacher Assessed Grades (TAGs) in summer 2021. You can also read our frequently asked questions.

Read the consultation outcome
View our Frequently Asked Questions page

Exams will take place in May/June 2022 for International qualifications (International GCSE, International AS/A Level, iPrimary and iLowerSecondary). In the unlikely event that these exams cannot take place in some countries because of the pandemic, students’ grades would instead be determined by using an evidence-based approach, which would be marked and graded by Pearson. Centres would have to submit at least one set of past papers as part of the portfolio.

We strongly encourage teachers to teach and assess their students as normal, but also to review the guidance in relation to the range of evidence that would be needed and to plan their exam preparation accordingly. 

Contingency arrangements for international qualifications

Exam Aids are now available in the following subjects:

  • GCSE (9-1) Mathematics 
  • GCSE (9-1) Physics
  • GCSE (9-1) Combined Science
  • International GCSE Physics
  • International GCSE Double Science
  • International GCSE Single Science.

The exam aids can be found in the Summer 2022 support section for each qualification. You can find a link for your individual subject from our main Summer 2022 support page.

Summer 2022 support page

On 30 September, the Department for Education and Ofqual published the outcomes of the consultation on proposed summer 2022 adaptations, including optionality and advance information. 

Read more about the 2022 adaptations consultation outcomes

Read more about the NEA and field work consultation outcomes

We have created frequently asked questions that give you more detail about the adaptations.

Read the Frequently Asked Questions

Please visit the summer 2022 support tab on each qualification page to find out about the specific adaptations which have been put in place for each qualification. The adaptation and optionality information is available on each page. The Advance Information is not yet available for release. When it becomes available it will be published on the Summer 2022 support tab for each qualification. 

International AS/A Levels, iPrimary and iLowerSecondary 

Owing to the modular nature of International AS/International A Level qualifications, there are no adaptations (except for IAS/IAL Law which is a linear qualification). We can also confirm there will be no changes to the assessment of iPrimary and iLowerSecondary.  

International GCSEs

We have created frequently asked questions that give you more detail about the adaptations.

Read the frequently-asked questions

Please visit the summer 2022 support tab on each qualification page to find out about the specific adaptations which have been put in place for each qualification. The adaptation and optionality information is available on each page. The Advance Information is not yet available for release. When it becomes available it will be published on the summer 2022 support tab for each qualification. 

GQ basedata will be available from 3 December. Please ensure that all of your entries are made before the entry deadline to avoid being charged late fees. Amendments to entries made before 22 April will not be charged for. Any withdrawals made prior to 22 April will be refunded.

Access GQ basedata

The UK qualifications entry deadline is 21 February 2022 and all other key dates can be found in the link below.

Read more about key dates and deadlines (PDF,0.1 MB)

For support with making entries using EDI or Edexcel Online, please see the links below.

Making entries using EDI
Making entries using Edexcel Online

Results days will be returning to one week apart:

  • Thursday 18 August: AS/A level and International AS/A Level and other Level 3 qualifications
  • Thursday 25 August: GCSE, International GCSE and other Level 2 qualifications. 

The final timetables for all UK and International qualifications in summer 2022 are now available to view on our Exam timetables page.

Read more on our exam timetables page

From the January 2022 series onwards, we will no longer be dispatching CDs for the listening exams. In place of the manufactured CDs, we will be supplying centres with the audio files digitally via the Secure Download Service (SDS) platform. To find out more about SDS (if you do not already use this system) and how to set up an account, please refer to our guidance article. 

Read more about the Secure Download Service (SDS)

There are a couple of reasons behind our decision to remove CDs and we hope that you will experience the benefit. Firstly, we are aware that there has been a developing change in technology, and many centres do not have access to CD players. CDs can cause delays in transit, as parcels containing CDs are often searched by customs and are subject to higher customs charges. Finally, CDs are not recyclable, and we are looking to reduce our environmental impact globally where possible. 

The International A Level, iPrimary and iLowerSecondary provisional timetables for October 2022 are now available on our website. Please send in any feedback by Friday 10 December. 

View the provisional timetables

In 2022 we will only be offering the option of a visiting examiner for UK centres. UK centres will have a choice of assessment by either a visiting examiner attending their centre, or digitally via recorded performances (to be submitted via the Learner Work Transfer (LWT) platform). 

Due to the ongoing restrictions around global travel we are unable to offer visiting examiners to International centres and work must be submitted and assessed digitally. 

If you are a UK centre wishing to proceed with an in person moderation visit, we strongly recommend that you also collect some video evidence, as a contingency, in case the visit cannot take place for any reason. 

For more information about the subjects where visiting moderation is an option, please visit the relevant subject pages where there are subject specific support documents and FAQs from our Summer 2022 support web page.

Access subject specific support and FAQs via our Summer 2022 support page

Read more information about the Learner Work Transfer platform

Examinations will be taking place in January 2022. Please make sure that you have looked at which International GCSE qualifications are available in the series via our website as some amendments have been made.

See the International GCSE qualifications available in the January series (PDF, 0.1 MB)

We can confirm that there will be no adjustments made to assessments for this series, other than the changes to International GCSE English Literature 4ET1.

See changes to International GCSE English Literature 4ET1

Teachers entering students for the optional spoken language endorsement for International GCSE English Language A or B are not required to make or submit video recordings of assessments.

January 2022 timetables

The final timetables for all International qualifications in January are on our Exam timetables page. 

View the Exam timetables page

Information on results days for the October/November 2021 series is available on our results day support page.

Read our information about results days

The release of results to students can take place from 08.00 am for the October/November 2021 series. This is a change from what we have previously communicated. The 08.30am was only put in place temporarily for August 2021 results dates and should not be followed for this series.

We are pleased to be able to confirm the speaking windows for our modern foreign languages. 

Learn more about the speaking windows on our languages support pages

There is a new FAQ hub and a new Teaching, Learning and assessment page for Vocational and Technical qualifications in 2021/22.

Read vocational and technical qualifications 2021-2022 FAQs
Take a look at the Teaching, learning and assessment 2021-2022 page

You will find the latest information and support for our vocational qualifications on this page, along with links to our regular VQ Bulletin containing all the key updates you need for our vocational qualifications. Please do bookmark this page for future reference.

Read the VQ Bulletins


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