AQA – Design through DT

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All the information you need for administration of these courses, including Specifications, Forms and Dates

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News – Essential

Below is information with regards to the changes for 2021, please keep checking the AQA site throughout the year, as further changes maybe taking place.

Information from AQA with regards to 2021 assessment

Who knows what is happening now!

Please check with your examination board

Issued – Friday 15 Jan 2021

DfE and Ofqual summer 2021 consultation

The Department for Education (DfE) and Ofqual have launched a consultation for the summer 2021 exam series for GCSEs, AS and A-levels  .

This follows on from the Secretary of State’s announcement last week that exams won’t go ahead as normal this summer – and that the Government will work with Ofqual and exam boards on alternative arrangements.

Here are some of the proposals:

  • A student’s grade in each subject will be based on their teachers’ assessment of the standard at which the student is performing, using a combination of evidence that might include:
    • results from papers provided by exam boards, but set by teachers to take account of differential learning. This will be supported by mark schemes, exemplar papers, other guidance on standardisation, and training from exam boards
    • non-exam assessment (NEA) in subjects where it applies
    • other performance evidence such formal tests, mock exam results and any substantial work completed by students.
  • All students can appeal if they don’t believe their grade reflects the evidence of the standard at which they were performing
  • Students who aren’t studying within a school or college must be able to receive grades too.

In terms of timing, the DfE and Ofqual are proposing that:

  • students are assessed by their teachers in a period beginning in May into early June
  • teachers submit grades to exam boards by mid-June
  • external quality assurance is carried out by exam boards throughout June
  • results are issued to students after the quality assurance, most likely in early July.

The DfE and Ofqual say that students should be given time to complete their non-exam assessments (NEA), as this will contribute to the evidence teachers use to determine their grades. They are proposing that the exam boards should give guidance on adjustments that could be made to the way non-exam assessments are completed, to account for current circumstances.

The DfE and Ofqual have also launched a consultation   to look at which Vocational, Technical, and other Qualifications will need alternative arrangements and how those arrangements should work.

While the final arrangements for the summer are still to be confirmed, it’s important for schools and colleges to continue to make entries on our system as usual, so students can receive grades from us. The deadline for entries is Sunday 21 February.

As we’ve said previously, we want to make sure that students who are studying for AQA qualifications receive the grades they deserve. To help make this happen, we’ll be responding to the consultation ourselves and working closely with government and regulators over the coming months.

Issued – Tuesday 5 Jan 2021

Following the announcement that it won’t be possible for exams to go ahead as normal this summer, the Education Secretary has confirmed that GCSE, AS and A-level exams won’t go ahead   and will be replaced by a form of teacher-assessed grades, with training and support provided to ensure these are awarded fairly and consistently.

The full details will need to be decided in consultation with Ofqual, the exam boards and teaching representatives. We know that you’ll want to hear what this means for you, and we promise that we’ll keep you updated as soon as we know more.

As always, we want to make sure that students who are studying for AQA qualifications will receive grades they deserve. We’ll be working closely with government and regulators to make this happen.

If you have any entries with us for January exams, the Department for Education has said that schools and colleges can continue with these exams where they judge it right to do so.

Last updated This news story was updated 16:10, Wednesday 6 January 2021

Issued – Wednesday 23 September 2021

Following the announcement that it won’t be possible for exams to go ahead as normal this summer, the Education Secretary has confirmed that GCSE, AS and A-level exams won’t go ahead   and will be replaced by a form of teacher-assessed grades, with training and support provided to ensure these are awarded fairly and consistently.

The full details will need to be decided in consultation with Ofqual, the exam boards and teaching representatives. We know that you’ll want to hear what this means for you, and we promise that we’ll keep you updated as soon as we know more.

As always, we want to make sure that students who are studying for AQA qualifications will receive grades they deserve. We’ll be working closely with government and regulators to make this happen.

If you have any entries with us for January exams, the Department for Education has said that schools and colleges can continue with these exams where they judge it right to do so.

Last updated This news story was updated 16:10, Wednesday 6 January 2021

GCSE Design and Technology (8552)

All sections of the non-exam assessment (NEA) up to and including ‘Developing design ideas’ will remain the same for 2021.

Changes for 2021

Realising design ideas

  • This section has been reduced from 20 to 10 marks
  • Students will no longer be assessed on the skill of making but will be required to show their ‘intentions of prototypes’ and demonstrate their understanding of the processes involved in making
  • The assessment no longer requires students to make a final prototype – instead, they can show their understanding of the processes involved in making by writing about them. However, making skills are important for progression to future study, and for students understanding, so we’d encourage you to continue to allow students to make wherever possible. This is one way of demonstrating the knowledge tested in the 2021 ‘Realising design ideas’ section and is the best way to inspire and enthuse students in the subject.

Analysing and evaluation

  • This section has been reduced from 20 to 15 marks
  • Analysis and evaluation throughout the design process can take place in relation to prototype ideas and models
  • There’s no expectation to test a final made prototype but students should find ways of testing prototype designs.

NEA will still count as 50% of the overall GCSE qualification.

No planned changes to exam

There are no planned changes to the exam. The same specification content should be covered as always; the exam

All the information you need for administration of these courses, including Specifications, Forms and Dates

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