Schoolzone blog: D&T, drama, citizenship and cooking for 2016

D&T, drama, citizenship and cooking for 2016

 

25 Sept 2014

 

These are the latest subjects whose content and assessment have been reviewed by Ofqual. D&T sees the biggest content change, but it's the reforms to assessment that are perhaps the more interesting aspect of this proposal.

In today's consultation, Ofqual re-asserts its view that coursework needs to be reduced and that tiering of exams is to be used only where essential: which is in none of these subjects.

D&T becomes a single qualification, removing separate resistant materials, textiles and graphics options. There will be options within the course, however. Non-exam assessment is reduced slightly (60% to 50%) - this will be a great relief to teachers of the subject who had been very alarmed at the prospect of its complete removal. There is also some support for combination of the various D&T options into one - and it should improve the gender balance of the subject.

Cooking and nutrition is a new GCSE qualification replacing food technology, catering and home economics. While this reduces schools' choices, Ofqual's aim is it ensure equivalence. It will have the same non-exam content as D&T, under whose remit it is most likely to sit within schools.

In drama, students will now have to study a complete play. Non-exam assessment is to be reduced to a maximum of 60% in GCSE, AS and A-level - currently it's up to 100%.

However, Citizenship Studies (currently taken by around 2% of students) is to lose coursework altogether.

Full details of the changes here.

 

Michael Gove had been keen to see the complete removal of coursework, which caused alarm among teachers fearing for the impact on lower-attaining students. Teachers of subjects which have a very high skills content, such as drama and D&T, considered assessment without a non-exam component impossible - it seems they have won the argument.

It's also encouraging to see that Ofqual are still talking about AS levels as if they will remain embedded in A-levels - they have always opposed Gove's plans to extract them: as have most teachers .Hopefully this is another Gove ambition that will not be achieved.

 

 

 

 

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