Geography GCSE and A level from 2016 | Pearson qualifications

Geography GCSE and A level from 2016

1 December 2014

This is an update about the new GCSE and A level Geography qualifications that we are developing for first teaching from September 2016.

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These will be exciting new specifications that I'm sure that you will want to teach and that your students will enjoy engaging with.

We are looking forward to sharing these with you soon.

In the meantime, I wanted to give you an update of some of the activity that we've been involved in over the last few weeks and months in developing these new specifications.

Working with key stakeholders 

We've been working with DfE, ALCAB, Ofqual, our expert subject advisory group including subject associations and HE, and the other awarding organisations to ensure that the required subject content and assessment arrangements can be developed into new specifications that have the full potential to provide maximum benefit in terms of learner outcomes and progression, without being over-burdensome for centres in terms of delivery.

This includes, for example, ensuring the potential for co-teachability of AS and A level qualifications and the smooth implementation and delivery of non-exam assessment of fieldwork at A level by centres.

Working with teachers

You may have received some emails from me this term asking if you wanted to join a focus group discussion or take part in an interview to gauge your views and get your input on what we are proposing.

As a result we've spoken, in-depth, to well over a 150 heads of department and have had over 1,500 responses to our quick polls and surveys. One such recent poll on this subject page asked you "Over how many years is your school likely to teach the new GCSE in Geography from 2016?" The response was that around 40 per cent of you were planning either a full 3-year GCSE, or, part of year 9, plus year 10 and year 11. This kind of evidence helps to inform our planning of support for centres many of which will expect it earlier than 2016. 

Help choose the 2016 image for your GCSE and A level Geography specifications

We’ve had some fantastic feedback from teachers on the cover designs and origami images for the 2015 GCSE and A level subjects. It seems everyone has a favourite.

origami images from 2015 specifications

Now we’re thinking about the 2016 GCSE and A level Geography specifications and we’d like you to help us find the best image.

We've already canvassed your ideas via social media. Thank you to everyone who sent one in. We'll soon be giving you all the opportunity to vote on your favourite origami image for geography specifications!

Thank you to everyone who has been involved so far with specification development so far.

If you would like to be involved in future research on the new qualifications for 2016 or have ideas for support or training please do get in touch.

All the best,



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