Future improvements to GCSE Geography A and B | Pearson qualifications

Future improvements to GCSE Geography A and B

Tue Mar 21 17:29:25 UTC 2023

As part of our ongoing review of our qualifications, we've looked at the level of demand and accessibility of our GCSE Geography specifications and assessments and in response to this, we’re exploring making the following improvements.

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For the 2023 exams we’ve: 

  • made minor changes to the phrasing of questions to make the wording clearer to students, this includes some of our 8 mark extended response questions. Our command words and question styles remain the same, so there's no need to change your exam preparation for students,

  • added additional instructions to candidates to remind them to refer to resources in their responses in some of our 8-mark extended response and Explain/Suggest questions, 

  • reviewed the level of detail in resources used in our exams to ensure information is accessible.

SPaG marks from 2024 onwards

We’ve also reviewed where the SPaG marks sit in our question papers to improve the accessibility of these marks. For candidates sitting Specification A the SPaG marks will be moved to the final 8-mark extended response question in Section B of Papers 1 and 2. The SPaG marks in Paper 3 will remain on the 12-mark ‘Discuss’ question item at the end of Question 5.

For candidates sitting Specification B the SPaG marks will remain on the final 8-mark extended response question in Section B of Papers 1 and 2 and the final 12-mark ‘Justify’ question at the end of Paper 3. 

Future qualification improvements

Our aim is to improve the accessibility of our specifications and assessments for all learners, so we’re also going to be consulting with schools on other future improvements, including: 

  • alternative styles of extended response questions, 

  • the language of our specifications including geographical terms that are outdated or problematic.  

We’d love to hear your thoughts on our GCSE Geography qualifications to help us understand better what is working well and how we can improve. We’ll use this information to develop our improvements to the specifications and assessments. If you’d like to share your feedback, please complete our GCSE Geography survey.

We’ll be in touch again later in the summer with more information. In the meantime, look out for our program of professional development events for geography in 2023. Finally, if you haven’t done so already, please sign-up to receive my Subject Advisor updates so you can stay up to date with the latest qualification news and updates.


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