Details of new GCSEs released


Ofqual confirms some key new features to future GCSEs. The new GCSEs will be introduced for teaching in English literature, English and maths from September 2015. Other subjects will then be implemented the following year.

The key changes will be:
  • A linear structure with examinations at the end of the course and content not divided into modules
  • Exams will be the default mode of assessment apart from where this would not be practical. Specific exceptions to this will be announced subject by subject
  • Exams only taking place in the summer, with the exception of maths and English, where exams will be able to be taken in November if the student was 16 on 31st August that year. Ofqual is still looking into whether this November exam period should be available in other subjects
  • A new grading scale of 1-9 with 9 being the highest. Candidates that fail to reach the minimum standard will be given a U
  • Tiering to be used only for subjects where untiered papers will not allow students at the lower end of the ability range to demonstrate their knowledge and skills, or will not stretch the most able. Where it is used, the tiering model used will be decided on a subject-by-subject basis

Ofqual press release

NGA's GCSE consultation response