Politics

Update from Pearson regarding the Covid-19 (Coronavirus) outbreak

Update from Pearson regarding the Covid-19 (Coronavirus) outbreak

In response to the recent Covid-19 (Coronavirus) outbreak, we would like to reassure the global schools' community that we are monitoring the situation extremely closely. We understand the impact this situation is having, and our thoughts are with everyone affected.

A Level Politics network event

Finding useful Politics resources on our website

The scope of the EU and its application in A level Politics

Update from Pearson regarding the Covid-19 (Coronavirus) outbreak

A Level Politics network event

A Level Politics network event

We have made available a recording of an online network event for A level Politics. The event provides feedback on the Summer 2019 exam series and looks at some marked exemplar work. Teachers who were unable to attend a face-to-face event can watch this recording.

Finding useful Politics resources on our website

The scope of the EU and its application in A level Politics

Update from Pearson regarding the Covid-19 (Coronavirus) outbreak

A Level Politics network event

Finding useful Politics resources on our website

Finding useful Politics resources on our website

This short video explains how to use our website to find the most useful resources and support materials for A level Politics teachers.

The scope of the EU and its application in A level Politics

Update from Pearson regarding the Covid-19 (Coronavirus) outbreak

A Level Politics network event

Finding useful Politics resources on our website

The scope of the EU and its application in A level Politics

The scope of the EU and its application in A level Politics

We have created this guidance on the scope of the EU and its application in A level Politics in response to queries from teachers about Brexit and its impact upon the specification.

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This is some general advice from our examiners on the issue of how to approach essay writing and ensuring sufficient evaluation in A level Politics essays.

Pearson Edexcel does not insist or recommend that there is only one form of essay writing in which to frame responses. There are a wide range of approaches and methods all of which are perfectly valid and creditworthy. Essay style and composition does vary from centre to centre and within centres from candidate to candidate – that is borne out in the vast range of scripts we mark. We do not seek common uniformity but instead celebrate the different and unique approaches which we see.

In support material and examiner reports there are some good examples where we try to spell out best practice and give insights in how to maximise mark potential and reflect on the past series of exams.

If you look across the entire Principal Examiner Reports one common theme which emerges is the demand placed on candidates to reach out and gain AO3 marks. This was a fault line across all papers.

AO1 and AO2 presented little difficulty and they have appeared on the legacy specification in a similar format – as such they are not new demands. This does differ when we come to AO3. Unlike on the legacy specification where this was a lesser mark for communication – AO3 is now an equal partner for marks with the other two AOs. It demands that the candidate forms a judgment and reaches a verdict.

It doesn’t matter if the verdict is by a large margin, i.e. there can be no doubt that x is better than y because… or a small one, on balance it can be seen that despite weaknesses, x is still more preferable to y because… but Ofqual and the DfE demanded an outcome be reached. Their rationale was that after two years of study a candidate has to be able to make judgments and to verify and support them. On this basis they gave parity of esteem to AO3 with the other two AOs. It is not a junior partner.

It does not matter how the AO3 is included but it must not be ignored or given scant coverage given its new importance i.e. it must be evident throughout an answer to score highly. We have seen good essays begin with a view in their introduction then continue to argue their view while seeking to explain the other side and why it is negated. This sort of response shows consistency of view from the start of the essay till the end and addresses all three AO’s.

Candidates should not sit on the fence – they have to take sides – the essay can never be a draw. They can construct mini conclusions for each argument and there may be winning and losing arguments on both sides and some may be close but in the long run they have to get to a winning side – an outcome, a verdict, a conclusion to the entire debate. The crucial case is for the candidate to have a degree of reasoned logic in declaring the winning side.

We need an essay that makes a judgement, reaches a verdict and arrives at a well-argued conclusion. It is wise that the conclusion is not a spurious judgement at the end of the essay which we did not expect – it is best if we arrive at that conclusion with credible incremental steps in the essay.

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We've made available some exemplar scripts for A level Politics from the Summer 2019 exam series. The exemplars cover every question type from all four papers.

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Useful documents

Academic
A level Politics Source Question Guidance
pdf | 67.9 KB
Academic
A level Politics Synopticity Guidance
pdf | 69.0 KB
Academic
A level Politics Assessment Guidance
pdf | 316.2 KB

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