OCR is delighted to announce that all 37 out of its 37 reformed GCSEs and A Levels (including its new Level 3 Core Maths qualifications) due for teaching from September 2015, have been accredited by Ofqual. OCR has developed more new qualifications for 2015 than any other exam board.
OCR has developed specifications for 37 different qualifications, as well as marking schemes and a full suite of new resources and training materials covering subjects such as maths and English at GCSE plus A Levels in the sciences, art and design, the social sciences, history, English, business and computer science.
Commenting, OCR Chief Executive Mark Dawe said: “OCR is delighted to have reached this critical milestone in the biggest wave of qualification reform in a generation. Schools are under enormous pressure to deal with the scale and pace of change, especially when there are still some unresolved issues, such as the role of the new AS Level. Giving schools the practical support they need is our top priority. With the first accreditation phase complete, we are ramping up the support to prepare schools for a smooth, seamless transition in the coming months.”
“OCR’s new qualifications have been designed in close liaison with schools, colleges, professional associations, universities, employers and subject experts via our specialist subject forums. This highly collaborative approach has been vital to the development of fresh, exciting GCSE and A Level specifications that will appeal to teachers and students while strengthening the UK’s skills base.
“Each of the 37 new qualifications due to be taught from September 2015 has had to meet rigorous content and assessment criteria set out by the Department for Education (DfE) and Ofqual. Throughout the development, OCR has seized the opportunity to push the boundaries and deliver innovative content to engage students while championing best practices to raise learning standards and better equip students for the global skills economy.”
“For example, we have lobbied for a new way to encourage practical science experiments; to address concerns that students could avoid reading a book from cover to cover at GCSE English; and to provide expert guidance on issues such as the tiering of the new GCSE Maths.
“From September 2015, students will be able to study; ten new topics including African Kingdoms in a broader A Level History; the social impact of the global digital media revolution and selfie culture in A Level Sociology; diverse texts ranging from Shakespeare and Dickens to a BBC Newsnight interview with Dizzee Rascal and Twitter in our new A Level English Language and Literature, developed in partnership with the English and Media Centre (EMC); and novel problem-solving questions in GCSE Maths.
“Rolling out the entire reform process will take several years, so we are taking every possible step to successfully embed the new approaches in schools as well as ensuring that they deliver what universities, employers and other stakeholders expect. Equipped with valuable lessons from the first tranche of reformed qualifications and the continued help of teachers, academics and subject experts, we are working on a second wave of new GCSEs and A Levels to be taught from September 2016.”
For more information on OCR GCSE and A Level reform, see www.ocr.org.uk/gcsealevelreform.