Now that the exam boards in England and Wales have published their draft specifications it’s possible to begin making comparisons. In alphabetical order, they are:
That only leaves CCEA in Northern Ireland, which is waiting till September.
Today’s Times Ed seems surprised that NATE’s John Hodgson has ‘taken the unusual step of welcoming as “very positive” changes which will require students to read more books and write creatively’. The journalist seems to be making out that NATE is a bunch of grumpy contrarians who hate it when students read books! No, Warwick, you were at the Conference – we love books, it’s the SATs we hate!
Of course there are concerns about the changes. The same TES item quotes a teacher who’ll ‘teach brutally to the exam’ – which sounds horrible! And the ‘creative’ aspect seems to worry some – though many see this (which is a QCA requirement) as stimulating. AQA, for example, define this as ‘personal / original interpretation or creative / transformational writing’, which seems to me to allow plenty of scope.