September 2023 History Subject Update | Pearson qualifications

September 2023 History Subject Update

Fri Sep 15 09:02:00 UTC 2023

This update contains useful information, news and advice for Edexcel History teachers.

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GCSE History specification language amendments

We have recently reviewed our GCSE History specification for sensitivity of language and identified a number of terms which are now considered outdated and problematic. We have therefore decided to update some of the language in our specification. The changes will come into effect for first teaching September 2023, first assessment Summer 2025. A new version of the specification (Issue 4) is now available below along with details of the specific changes:

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Coming soon: A level History language changes

We will soon be updating specific language in our A level History specification and details of these changes will be provided in the Autumn term.

GCSE History mark scheme amendment: Level 2 stimulus cap

We have made a minor amendment to the GCSE History mark schemes, for first assessment Summer 2024. The Level 2 stimulus cap will no longer exist on any question. The cap remains unchanged for higher levels (eg Level 3 and 4). The sample assessment materials have now been updated to reflect this change.

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GCSE History Paper 3 Weimar and Nazi Germany Source C

Source C in the Summer 2023 paper originally contained two sections of the painting ‘Big City’ by Otto Dix. Having reviewed the source we have decided that it contains a stereotypical depiction which does not align with our Diversity, Equity and Inclusion commitments. We recognise that, as students develop their skills as historians, they may encounter sources, such as this one, that include words or images they find upsetting or challenging. We need to balance this against our greater responsibility to students as an exam board, and for this reason we have taken the decision to redact the source from this question paper. In light of this, and the feedback we have received from teachers regarding the package of sources and interpretations, we have decided to provide an alternative practice question 3 parts a-d which centres will be able to use for mock exams. We will provide more information about this in the Autumn term.

Summer 2023 ResultsPlus data

On our website you can now find  spreadsheets containing global data from the Summer 2023 exam series for GCSE and A level History. This data gives you a detailed breakdown of the mean marks on each question overall and by grade:

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Key dates for your diary this term

28 September 2023 RoMM deadline After this date you will no longer be able to request a review of marking or moderation through our enquiry about results service.
15 December 2023 Access to scripts deadline After this date you will no longer be able to view your students’ scripts using our free service.

Summer 2023 feedback events

We are running online Summer 2023 feedback events for GCSE and A level History on the following dates:

  • Pearson Edexcel GCSE History: Summer 2023 Feedback - 03 October 2023 at 16:00 - 17:30 GMT
  • Pearson Edexcel A Level History: Summer 2023 Feedback - 04 October 2023 at 16:00 - 17:30 GMT

A pre-recorded version of the GCSE History feedback event will also be made available online later this term. Copies of the training materials for both events will also be posted on the qualification page.

Coming soon...

  • We are currently developing ideas for more GCSE and A level History training events for the 2024 Spring term and more information will be available about these events later this term.
  • Following the positive feedback received about our free GCSE History Knowledge Booster tests I can confirm we are now working on some new Medicine Knowledge Boosters and they will be released towards the end of this term.
  • We are currently in the process of reviewing our GCSE History assessments following feedback received from teachers this Summer. We will keep you updated on this process throughout the year.

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