The big question then becomes is it worth doing the AS coursework, because it has no weighting or worth for the A-level course!Doesn’t permitting exam leave for AS students detract from teaching time for the A-level?
In the current PHED 1 and 3, the exams are 2/3 recall of knowledge and 1/3 application of that knowledge to practical/coaching scenarios.
The new specifications have an additional assessment objective and a different weighting for both AS and A-level, meaning that the new specification’s exams have less factual recall, more application and much more analysis and evaluation.
The content looks vaguely reassuring in that it can be quickly recognised as the same stuff, with a few additional topics, and some departures; sliding filament, distraction conflict theory, profile of mood states to name three.
Coursework is essentially the same, and the idea of a single activity is balanced by no officiating. Will we see the need for the only very good performers/coaches being able to attain the standards required by AQA?
One interesting aspect of the AS and A-level drafts is that the detail of the practical assessment are exactly the same in each specification. There is an increase in examinable theoretical content that reflects the increase to 70%; again, much of this is dictated by Ofqual.
In other words the A-level candidates could be assessed in year 12 with the AS candidates and their marks recorded for submission in year 13. The assessment objectives for the new specifications have also changed.
The coursework is now to be called the NEA (Non-Examined Assessment). ), now involves students performing or coaching (no more officiating) one practical activity (15%) and written analysis (15%), which is essentially a watered-down version of the current sections B and C.
If there is no officiating, will this permit additional classroom teaching for the new theoretical content?
This means that in year 12, students taking the AS course can be in the same teaching group as those taking the A-level, so avoiding the logistical nightmare of having separate AS and A-levels classes in year 12.
Both the AS and A-level courses are 70% theory and 30% coursework, another Ofqual requirement, and so the same across all exam boards.