May 2023 Teaching Science update
Welcome to the May Teaching Science update for UK and International Science qualifications at KS4 and KS5 that contains information about the summer exams series, new training opportunities, and other news that I hope you find useful.
All the items covered in this update are as follows:
- Training events on 'Supporting transition to A level'
- Exam preparation for students, parents and carers
- Ofqual Student Guide 2023
- May/June 2023 timetables
- JCQ Calculator Guidance
- Equation sheets for GCSE Physics, Combined Science and International GCSE Sciences for Summer exams
- A level Biology A Pre-release Scientific Article
- A Level and AS Chemistry Data Booklets
- A level & AS Physics List of Data, Formulae and Relationships Booklets
- IAL Biology Pre-release Scientific Article
- IAL Chemistry Data Booklet
- International Science qualification training
- Pearson View from the Lab podcast 'Exploring an alternative approach to practical science' with entrepreneur Francis Jones
- Become an examiner
- BTEC News
- BTEC Vocational Qualification Bulletins
Training on 'Supporting transition to A level'
We are running a series of events to give teachers delivering Pearson Edexcel A level and/or GCSE science qualifications an opportunity to learn and discuss effective teaching and learning strategies to help students bridge the gap between GCSE and A level Sciences.
- discuss the differences between GCSE and A level study, including level of difficulty, accessibility, learning styles and methods of assessment
- be introduced to a range of activities to both enthuse and enable students who have just completed GCSE assessments to make and sustain the necessary step up to the level of understanding and methods of working
- consider the role of independent learning in developing success at A level
- discuss and look at ways to address some of the common pitfalls experienced by students in taking this challenging step.
Please note: As this session may be repeated, and to ensure recorded content is not accessed by undisclosed third parties, it is Pearson’s policy not to share recordings for paid training events.
Dates for the events are as follows:
Biology - 22 June register for the event
Chemistry - 26 June register for the event
Physics - 13 June register for the event
All events will take place 4-6pm.
Exam preparation for students, parents and carers
With the 2023 exam season now starting, we are sharing handy guides and links to places that students can turn to for information and support before, during, and after the exam period. A link to the page that provides this information is provided below.
Ofqual Student Guide
Ofqual have also published a Student Guide that provides information about this year's arrangements for qualifications regulated by Ofqual. It also explains what support is in place when taking exams and assessments and covers GCSEs, AS, A levels, other general qualifications, as well as vocational and technical qualifications. They have also published a condensed version of the student guide in HTML and PDF format.
May/June 2023 exam timetables
Summer 2023 exam timetables can be viewed on the link below. The timetables seek to maintain some of the space between the first and last exams in the same subject and reduces the chance of students missing all exams in a subject due to circumstances such as illness.
JCQ calculator guidance
Pearson does not provide a list of permitted calculators to use in science exams. Teachers can, however, refer to the JCQ instructions for Conducting Examinations document which provides calculator guidance on page 21.
Equation sheets for GCSE Physics, Combined Science and International GCSE Sciences for summer 2023
Equation sheets for GCSE Physics and GCSE Combined Science (the physics components) that are being provided as inserts in this summer's exams can be viewed and downloaded from our summer 2023 page.
A level Biology A Pre-release Scientific Article
The Pearson Edexcel A Level Biology A 9BN0 (SNAB) Paper 3 scientific article for the summer 2023 exam series is available for secure download from the qualification page from the 'Course Materials' section.
The article can be given to students so they can study and annotate it over the coming weeks in preparation for the Paper 3 examination paper 9BN0/03. Students are not allowed to take their annotated copy into the examination room - there will be a fresh copy inside examination paper. In the unlikely event the fresh copies are missing, then please download it from the qualification page.
Only 'clean' unmarked copies of the booklets can be used in examinations. If replacements are required, they can be downloaded from the qualification page or ordered order via the stationery website.
N.b. minor revisions to the booklets were made this year to ensure that they were the same as the lists that are also provided at the back of the question papers as mentioned in this update.
A Level and AS Chemistry Data Booklets
The A level and AS Chemistry Data Booklets can be viewed and downloaded from the qualification page (see the link provided below). Students may have a copy of the relevant Data Booklet for their personal use in lessons/homework to allow them to become familiar with it. In examinations, however, students must use an unmarked 'clean' copy of the Data Booklet. If additional copies are required, they can be printed from the website, or ordered from our stationery website.
A level & AS Physics List of Data, Formulae and Relationships Booklets
The List of Data, Formulae and Relationships Booklets for A level and AS Physics, that can be provided to students in examinations, are available on the qualification page in the 'Specification and Sample Assessments' section.
IAL Biology Pre-release Scientific Article
The Pearson Edexcel International Advanced Level Biology Unit 5 (WBI15) pre-release scientific article for the summer 2023 exam series is available to downloaded from the qualification page in the 'Course Materials' section.
The article can be given to students so they can study and annotate it over the coming weeks in preparation for the unit 5 examination paper. Students are not allowed to take their annotated copy into the examination room. There will be a fresh copy provided inside the Unit 5 written examination paper. In the unlikely event that these are missing, or if you do not have enough copies, you can download the article from the qualification page.
IAL Chemistry Data Booklet
The IAL Chemistry Data Booklet for use with units 2, 4 and 5 examinations can be viewed and downloaded from the qualification page - see the link provided below.
Students may have a copy of this data booklet for their personal use in lessons/homework to allow them to become familiar with it. In examinations, however, students must use an unmarked copy of the data booklet.
Centres will be sent copies of the data booklet first time entries are made and can get additional 'clean' quantities by printing the data booklet from the website or by ordering them from our additional stationery requests site.
International GCSE Science and IAL Science qualification training
Training opportunities we have available can be viewed on our Professional Development Academy page.
Please note, sometimes dates/times of events may need to change and new events may be added. We therefore recommend that you keep an eye on the Professional Development Academy pages for the most up-to-date information.
Pearson view from the lab podcast 'Exploring an alternative approach to practical science' with entrepreneur Francis Jones
In episode 39 of the view from the lab podcast, Andy Woods talks to young entrepreneur, Francis Jones. Francis has been working on a new approach to support practical science for those students who have found it difficult to engage in mainstream education. Francis is a former science teacher who has taken what he has learned in schools, and turned it into a solution that has widened access to science practicals. In this conversation we hear how Francis’s STEM@Home company is aiming to disrupt the science education system, by changing 'where, when, and how students’ carry out their practicals whilst also maximizing safety'.
Become an examiner
It's not too late to apply to be an examiner this summer.
BTEC Science news
You can view the latest BTEC Teaching Science update on the link below which contains infomation on Post-16 Level 3 BTEC reform networks amongst other news.
Some new BTEC information is also provided below.
BTEC key dates timeline
We have produced a new BTEC key dates timeline outlining actions for both centres and Pearson throughout the year. This will enable you know what to do and what you can expect from us right up until the release of summer results. This can be viewed on the Teaching, learning and assessment 2022/2023 page.
Summer 2024 BTEC provisional timetable
The summer 2024 BTEC provisional timetable is now available on our provisional timetables page.
If you have any feedback, you can provide this by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org by Friday 19 May.
BTEC Vocational Qualification Bulletins
We send out regular Vocational Qualification Bulletins to keep centres informed of our support and services. You can sign-up for these and also read previous bulletins on our website.