The specifications for the new GCSEs are gradually appearing.
Any child currently in year 9 will be taking the new English and maths GCSEs. Children currently in year 8 will also take new exams in science, history, geography and languages as well as maths and English.
There will be a new grading system from 1-9 (instead of A-G)
Exams will be harder e.g. learning formulae by heart for maths and more emphasis on problem solving.
There will be more emphasis on spelling, punctuation and grammar.
No more controlled assessments or coursework except in a handful of subjects. Children will take externally marked exams.
What will the reformed assessments look like?
- Linear assessments (examined at the end of a two year course)
- Assessment by external exam only
- Tiering to be avoided (i.e. exams split into foundation and higher), unless strong subject-specific reasons
- Expectations to match and exceed those of high-performing international jurisdictions
- Greater demand and discrimination at the top
- Current grading structure to be replaced by numbers
- No re-sit opportunities (except for English Language and Maths)