Government and Ofqual consultations on GCSE and A level reform
On 16 July 2014, the government launched a consultation to gather views on proposed new subject content for a series of GCSEs and A levels to be taught from 2016.
The consultation is in 2 parts.
Content developed by awarding organisations
The consultation seeks views on content developed by awarding organisations, working with subject associations and other stakeholders.
At GCSE these subjects are Art and Design, Computer Science, Dance, Music and Physical Education.
At AS and A level, the subjects are Dance, Music and Physical Education.
Content proposed by the A level Content Advisory Board (ALCAB)
The second part of the consultation seeks views on content published by the A level Content Advisory Board (ALCAB) for AS and A levels in Modern Foreign Languages, Ancient Languages, Mathematics, Further Mathematics and Geography. ALCAB brings together leading university academics to advise on A level content.
At the same time, Ofqual announced that it is consulting on the assessment arrangements for all the above subjects. The government also announced that, from September 2014, it will consult on content for the remaining subjects to be taught from 2016. These are Citizenship Studies, Design and Technology, Drama and Religious Studies.
Find out more about the DfE consultation. The closing date for responses to this consultation is Monday, 15 September 2014.
Find out more about the Ofqual consultation on assessment arrangements. The closing date for responses to this consultation is Monday, 22 September 2014.
Key changes to GCSE and A level PE
Rigour has been increased by sharpening the definition of what is expected of students and emphasising the theoretical knowledge needed to underpin physical activity and practical performance.
- The new draft content, which is being consulted on, places greater emphasis on assessing students’ theoretical knowledge and understanding of the physical, scientific and socio-cultural factors that can have an impact on physical performance.
- The consultation proposes that non-exam assessment (NEA) should account for 30 per cent of the new GCSE, A level and AS qualifications for first teaching in 2016 in physical education. This reduction in NEA would be split into the following:
- 20 per cent practical performance at GCSE, where students will be assessed in 2 different activities in the role of player/performer
- 15 per cent practical performance at A level, where students will be assessed in 1 activity in the role of player/performer or coach
- 10 per cent analysis/evaluation/training programme at GCSE and 15 per cent at A level.
Note: The government has already published subject content for GCSEs in English Baccalaureate subjects (English, Mathematics, History, Geography, Languages) and for the first group of A levels to be taught from September 2015 (English, History, Business, Economics, Psychology, Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Art and Design).