General Qualifications Bulletin - International - Issue 22
This is the last time I will be writing to you in 2021 and what another eventful year it has been for the education sector. From all of us here at Pearson, I would like to start by saying thank you for everything you have achieved this year whilst contending with the pandemic and I wish you and your families a restful holiday.
I will continue to write to you in the new year via these bulletins with the first edition of 2022 due to arrive with you on the 12 January. Throughout the course of next year we will continue to provide you with any relevant information as soon as we are able to and will offer you the support you may need. I am sure there will continue to be twists and turns along the way but we will always be available to help.
We have seen a few updates for international and UK qualifications since the last time I wrote to you. There have been updates to the JCQ website about 2022 which I would suggest reading. All UK boards have released subject level advance information guidance for UK GCSEs and AS/A Level. We have also released the guidance for the relevant International GCSEs and International A level Law and this can be accessed via our Summer 2022 support page on our website. This information is designed to help teachers and students better understand the advance information (for example what will be covered and the level of variation to expect) and to aid planning in advance of the release of the main advance information which will be by 7 February 2022 at the latest.
For those of you who will be sitting exams with us in the January 2022 window I wish you and your students all the best.
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.
In the last few weeks the JCQ FAQs have been updated and are available on their website.
Additional information and updates have been uploaded in response to the release of the advance information guidance. Additionally, the contingency FAQs have been updated as a result of JCQ members having seen questions asking for further information about the contingency guidance. We encourage you to read these updates.
Ahead of the publication of the advance information, we have been working with JCQ awarding organisations to provide some further guidance to help teachers and students better understand the advance information (for example what will be covered and the level of variation to expect), to aid planning in advance of the release of advance information.
This guidance aims to give teachers and students an indication of the approach that will be taken for advance information in each subject for Pearson qualifications, and is now available to access on the summer 2022 support pages for all relevant GCSE, International GCSE and AS/A level subjects. Advance information guidance is also being provided for all applicable International GCSE qualifications and can be accessed via our summer 2022 support pages.
This guidance does not replace the advance information itself which will be released on each qualification page (open access), for all applicable subjects, by 7 February 2022 at the latest, unless the UK Department for Education (DfE) decides on an earlier release date. It should also be read alongside the JCQ advance information guidance which has already been published.
You can read the letter that Dr Jo Saxton, Chief Regulator for Ofqual, sent to all UK schools on the Ofqual website.
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. We have also created some frequently asked questions.
Exams will take place in May/June 2022 for International GCSE and International AS/A Level. 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 on our website in relation to the range of evidence that would be needed and to plan their exam preparation accordingly.
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.
On 30 September the UK Department for Education and Ofqual published the outcomes of the consultation on proposed summer 2022 adaptations, including optionality and advance information.
Please visit our Summer 2022 support page for full details, and the Summer 2022 support tab on each qualification page to read about the specific adaptations and optionality that have been put in place for each qualification.
You can also read our frequently asked questions that provide more detail about the adaptations.
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.
We have created frequently asked questions that give you more detail about the adaptations for International GCSE.
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.
New versions of the GCSE and International GCSE and Mathematics in Context (L3 Core Maths) basedata are now available on our website. The following updates have been made to the basedata.
GCSE and International GCSE summer 2022
Version 2.0 - Updates to the timetable for 4GN1 and 4SD0
Mathematics in Context (L3 Core Maths) Summer 2022
Version 2.0 - Updates to the timetable for 7MC0 01
You will only need to update the latest versions of the basedata if you have made, or will be making, entries for the subjects listed above.
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.
Entry deadlines and other key dates can be found in our information manual.
For support with making entries using EDI or Edexcel Online, please see the below links:
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 who wishes 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 page.
More information about the Learner Work Transfer platform can be found on our support site.
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.
Information on results days for our October/November 2021 series is available on our results day support page.
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.
There is a new FAQ hub and a new Teaching, Learning and assessment page for Vocational and Technical qualifications in 2021/22.
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.