Gcse Science Coursework Tips For First-Time

Marking the end of coursework in most subjects, pupils will be able to retake GCSE modules to improve their grades, under new criteria unveiled today.

It is now up to exam boards to draw up detailed GCSE courses, but the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority (QCA) expects modular exams to be available in all major subjects. Pupils will be allowed to re-sit an exam unit if they are not happy with their mark first time round.

Education experts warned that modular exams would lead to better grades, but not necessarily an improvement in the education of pupils.

In modern foreign language GCSEs, pupils will be able to take a full GCSE or "short courses" in written and spoken language only.

Controlled assessment will replace teacher-marked coursework in most major GCSE subjects in 2009. Subjects such as geography and history will specify 75% external assessment, or exam, and 25% controlled assessment, or supervised extended essay writing.

The changes are outlined in revised GCSE criteria for 28 GCSE subjects published today by the QCA, the Welsh Department for Children, Education, Lifelong Learning and Skills, and Northern Ireland's Council for Curriculum, Examinations and Assessment.

A consultation on changing the criteria ended on September 14. It covered all GCSE subjects except English, English literature, maths, ICT and science. New criteria for all these subjects - except science, which has already been revised and will remain the same - will be developed next year.

QCA's chief executive, Ken Boston, said the revisions would maintain public confidence in the qualification for the next 20 years, and the extended writing tasks and more varied questions would stretch and challenge young people.

He said: "The 14 to 19 education reform programme is the most important educational innovation in a generation and its introduction will ensure that all young people are able to demonstrate their skills, knowledge and understanding when studying for a qualification that meets their individual abilities.

"In reforming the GCSE qualification and subject criteria we have ensured that these are aligned to the scope and ambition of the new diplomas."

"The revised GCSE qualification and subject criteria will give learners a reliably assessed, consistent and fair qualification," he added.

The revised criteria will allow for the development of new GCSE subject criteria for teaching in 2009, with the first awards being made in 2011.

  1. I'm starting year 11 next week and want straight a*'s or at least close.

    1) What grades did you get?
    2)How long before the exams did you start revising?
    3) How long did you revise for?
    4) Any tips you would give yourself to get better grades?

    I'm also considering doing the school play this year which take up A LOT of time after school, would i have time to do it if I worked hard after rehearsals? I really want to get top grades and simultaneously do the school play.

    The subjects I'm doing this year are:
    Triple science
    English Lang
    English lit
    AS Maths(which makes me think I'm going​to really struggle with time)

    I did maths and sociology in year 10 and got an a* in both.

    Last edited by Thatgirl2341; 04-09-2014 at 18:56. Reason: More info
  2. I got 10 A*s at GCSE. The 'secret' for me was to use the specifications and past exam papers to full effect. I also can't emphasise enough the importance of generic skills, if you're well practicised in maths and read a lot of books these will translate to effective technique for handling all sorts of information. Just enjoy the opportunity to learn about lots of different things in life, its rare that you will have this sort of diversity before you start to specialise at A level

  3. Well done on the 3a*s!
    1) I didn't do additional science since we do all three units for each science at the end of this year. However, I would say do past papers, mark them yourself with mark schemes and look at the examiners reports- it really tells you the things you need to write in the exam. Mind maps with drawings and diagrams(in colour) also really help in science.

    2) Also, for maths, I just did a crap load of past papers in the year and focused on my weaker subjects. When I did a past paper and didn't know a question, I would look at the mark scheme so I understand the question and what to do( that really work because questions each year are basically recycled). But doing that many past papers won't work for everyone since in year 10 I had a lot of time. Also don't be afraid to ask your maths teachers for any help with topics because they are there to help and it really does contribute to your grade. Ask them until you finally get the topic!
    For me it was always probability:')

    And ah thankyou, that's a lot of help haha
    Good luck for year 11
    (Original post by STUDYREVISE)
    I myself am starting year 11 and came out with 3 A*'s in year 10, and 2 B's which I am resitting.
    Doing the school play at the same time will be difficult...
    - how did you find additional science? - revision tips?
    - also, I am very weak at maths - how do you revise?
    I did English Literature in year 10 and came out with an A*. I made spider diagrams and practised LOTS of exam papers.
    I also got an A* in R.E - learn your keywords and think out of the box. buy a useful textbook and answer all past paper questions. I unfortunately crammed most of it in the night before but almost got full marks phew. pay attention in class and your fine.

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