March 2016 Drama, Theatre Studies and Performing Arts update
This subject update has information on GCSE Drama, AS/A level Drama and Theatre, and BTEC Performing Arts.
For GCSE Drama and AS/A level Drama and Theatre:
- GCSE Drama now accredited
- AS and A level Drama and Theatre 2016 guidance
- International centres wishing to offer 2016 Drama specifications
- Getting Ready to Teach events
- New forms for GCSE and A level
- Which board to choose.
For BTEC Performing Arts:
- BTEC Nationals in Performing Arts for 2016 update
- BTEC Firsts Performing Arts 2015 Unit 1 feedback and student performances
- BTEC Awards 2016
- Teacher support requests: Drama forum and Facebook.
GCSE Drama now accredited
I am pleased to announce that the Pearson Edexcel Level 1/Level 2 GCSE (9-1) in Drama specification has now been accredited. The specification, sample assessment materials, Getting Started guide and mapping document are now available on the Pearson website.
If you currently offer GCSE Drama, we will send hard copies of the specification and SAMs to your centre to arrive around Easter time.
AS and A level Drama and Theatre 2016 guidance
The AS and A level Drama and Theatre specifications are accredited and can be downloaded, together with the sample assessment materials.
There is a Getting Started guide for the specifications, which includes guidance and advice on co-teachability and a mapping document.
By 11 March 2016, there will be a scheme of work and course planner documents available too.
International centres wishing to offer 2016 Drama specifications
I am pleased to announce that we will be offering the new GCSE Drama, AS and A Level Drama and Theatre qualifications to international centres.
From September 2016 all GCSE/GCE drama centres are obliged to follow new regulations. Centres must now be visited by an examiner to observe practical exams at least once per year and to check the standards being applied. It is no longer possible to submit DVD recordings of student performances for assessment instead of being visited.
You can continue to register students but there will be a fee for organizing visiting examiners. The cost will be reviewed and further information on fees will follow in due course.
You will need to request examiner visits for assessment of students in 2017/2018 assessment window for GCSE and A Level. AS Level does not require a visiting examiner to attend the centre.
Requests for visiting examiners to attend must be made in accordance with any deadlines communicated by Pearson. International guides for centres will be released in Sept 2017 with further details.
If you do have any questions about the new specifications and support materials, please send them through to me: TeachingPerformingArts@Pearson.com.
Getting Ready to Teach events
There are free Getting Ready to Teach GCSE Drama and AS/A level Drama and Theatre events in May, June and July 2016. These are face-to-face and online events.
If any of these events are fully booked, please add your name to the waiting list.
New forms for GCSE and A level
We’ve updated our GCSE Drama and A level Drama and Theatre Studies forms to ensure they are compatible with all systems.
Which specification to choose?
At Pearson, we are interested to know if you have made the decision yet regarding choice of GCSE Drama and AS/A Level Drama and Theatre specifications for September 2016.
Your responses will help us understand what more in the way of events, support and information we need to make available to help centres with their decision-making.
BTEC Nationals in Performing Arts for 2016 update
We have submitted updated versions of the new BTEC Nationals in Performing Arts qualifications to Ofqual - these include changes to the compensation model.
There is a specification for each size the qualification, plus an Introductory Guide for the qualification. You can also access the sample assessment materials for the externally assessed units.
There will be Getting Ready to Teach events in the spring and summer terms.
We will be releasing the dates and details of these events within the next couple of weeks.
BTEC Firsts Performing Arts 2015 Unit 1 feedback and student performances
In last month's newsletter I included a link for Unit 1 feedback and student performances which was corrupted. The link is now working.
You can access the 2015 recorded feedback, plus seven examples of students’ practical responses to Progression Opportunities 1, 2 and 4, including:
- a lighting design student
- dance performances
- a comedy monologue
- a song.
To access the recordings, scroll down to the bottom of the webpage and select the document titled:
Supporting Documents - BTEC Level 2 Firsts (NQF) in Performing Arts: Feedback on June 2015 external assessment Unit 1 - Individual Showcase (Pre-Recorded Event)
The video files are large, so please be patient when downloading.
BTEC Awards 2016
Hopefully you will have seen that the BTEC Awards 2016 website is now live.
We are accepting nominations until midnight on Monday 4 April 2016.
Please do encourage BTEC customers to the site, especially if you know, or have heard of someone, who is a particularly outstanding candidate.
If you have any questions you can contact me directly or email firstname.lastname@example.org if an external nominator has any questions.
Teacher support requests
I’ve been contacted by a number of teachers recently who would like support and guidance for our qualifications.
Due to data protection laws, I can’t share their contact details in this update, but if you are interested in the following, please email me and I can send you their details:
- a teacher new to BTEC Nationals in Performing Arts, based in the Wolverhampton area, would like to set up links with local/national centres running the course.
- a teacher in the Southend area, working alone, would like to talk to BTEC Acting and Musical Theatre teachers about sharing ideas and verifying work.
- A new GCSE Drama teacher in Leicestershire would like to work with local schools for marking and moderation.
- A GCSE Drama teacher in Lancashire would like to work with local schools for marking and moderation.
If you are interested in making links with others, setting up or joining networks, sharing resources, or you have any questions, you can use our Drama forum.
Alternatively, you could utilise the various Facebook forums, including:
- Drama Teachers and Those Interested in Drama Education
- Dance Teachers and Those Interested in Dance Education
- FE and HE Performing Arts Lecturer Discussion Group
- Teachers of Edexcel GCSE Drama
- Teachers of BTEC Performing Arts
- Drama Teachers Sharing Group
- Teachers of Edexcel A Level Drama and Theatre.
I hope that you have found this update useful.