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Withdrawal of current Cambridge Employability Suite
Scheme codes affected: 10345–10350
Following valuable feedback from centres, OCR has taken the decision to replace the Cambridge Employability suite and will withdraw the current offer from 28 February 2015. We will offer a direct replacement, which we believe will better meet your needs. We will continue to consult with centres as we would like to gain as much feedback as possible. Please contact us if you haven’t been involved and would like to be. Further information on this replacement will be sent to you as soon as possible.
What is OCR planning to do?
We are redeveloping the current qualifications and a direct replacement will be available in February, so we will withdraw the current suite from 28 February 2015.
As a result of your feedback, we want to improve our Employability offer. The new suite will offer units that are clearer and more concise, using language that is relevant to the end user. We will achieve this by working closely with centres and employers to produce an improved qualification. We will be providing new resources and surrounding support to help you to deliver these qualifications and to improve engagement of your learners.
When will this happen?
The new suite will be available from February 2015.
The withdrawal date for the 2013 suite will be 28 February 2015.
For all learners already on programme (registered on the ILR) the final certification dates are:
How does this impact on centres?
We want to ensure that the impact on our centres is minimal. However, we understand you may have some questions:
Entries and funding
We recommend that you use up any entries that you have purchased prior to 28 February 2015 and do not buy extra entries.
Learners already engaged in learning/evidence gathering
If your learners are part-way through their learning on the current Employability suite, but you do not wish to continue and certificate on this suite and you prefer to transfer to the new suite, then we will map assessment criteria to the new specification.
How will OCR support us?
Our commitment to you and your learners is to ensure continuity in the following ways:
What are the next steps?
In November we will contact you by telephone as a follow up to this letter. We will also make draft units available on our website, as soon as possible, in order to inform you of proposed content. In addition, we will confirm arrangements for transferring to the new qualification at this time.
We would like to consult with you in order to gather as much feedback as possible. Therefore, it would be helpful if you could complete this survey (you can also indicate your desire to be involved further here).
In the meantime, if you have any questions, please call our Customer Contact Centre on 02476 851509.
NEW BUSINESS BANKING QUALIFICATION
The new OCR Level 2 Award in Business Banking qualification is now available.
Entry code: 10390
Qualification title: OCR Level 2 Award in Business Banking
Assessment: 11 credits
Qualification number: 601/4118/9
This qualification is intended for those working in, or aspiring to, a frontline service support role in business banking.
The learner will develop their understanding of the banking sector and business banking more specifically. They will also understand the range/types of business banking customers, their common needs and the products and services they utilise.
A dedicated webpage for this qualification is available and lists the handbook, unit and other supporting documentation: www.ocr.org.uk/qualifications/vocational-qualifications-qcf-business-banking-level-2-award-10390
This is a single unit qualification and the assessment is in the form of a Computer-based test (multiple choice questions). For further information please visit the qualification webpage.
If you have any queries about this notice, please call our Customer Contact Centre on 01223 553998.
OCR Admin Guide and Entry Codes: 14–19 Qualifications 2014/15
The OCR Admin Guide and Entry Codes: 14–19 qualifications 2014/15 should have arrived in OCR centres registered for general qualifications during the week commencing 8 September 2014.
The online version is available to download at www.ocr.org.uk/admin-guides.
We have made some amendments as follows to this Admin Guide. We apologise for any inconvenience caused. This new version will be version number 1.2.
Assessment Year 2014/15: Pages ii, iii and 13
Please note that the key date for refunds for withdrawn entries for June 2015 for GCE, FSMQ, Principal Learning, Project and Level 3 Certificate has changed.
The last date for refunds for withdrawn entries for June 2015 for the above qualifications is now 21 April 2015.
Replacement pages of the assessment year 2014/15 and pages 13 and 14 are provided below – you may wish to update these in your hard copy Admin Guide.
If you have any queries about this notice, please contact the Customer Contact Centre on 01223 553998.
Download full notice and replacement pages
REMOVAL OF FOUR UNITS FROM THE LIFE AND LIVING SKILLS SUITE
The following four units are being withdrawn by the owning Awarding Organisation and it has not been possible for OCR to take ownership of these, so they are being withdrawn from this suite of qualifications from September 2015:
You may continue to deliver these units. However, you will not be able to make claims for certification for these units after 30 September 2015. Please ensure that your learners have achieved these units prior to this date. We will update all relevant documentation to this effect.
Note: the end date of 30 September 2015 applies only to C9, I1, M21 and M22 (and to G2 and N18, as detailed in previous SIU).
We are currently reviewing the Life and Living Skills Suite in order to better meet the needs of our centres; we will contact you shortly with more information on this. If you are interested in being involved in consultation for this review then please email your details to contactusLLS@ocr.org.uk.
If you have any queries about this notice, please call our Customer Contact Centre on 024 7685 1509.
FURTHER EXTENSION OF OCR’S ASSESSOR AND QUALITY ASSURANCE QUALIFICATIONS
We are pleased to announce that the last entry date for the Assessor and Quality Assurance qualifications has been further extended to 31 December 2015. The qualification details are as follows:
You may continue to enter candidates for these qualifications until the last entry date given above.
The last certification date is the last date on which OCR will issue certificates. Centres are therefore advised to plan for completion of all candidate assessment at least two months prior to this date.
If you have any queries about this notice, please call our Customer Contact Centre on 02476 851509.
THE NEW BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION, CUSTOMER SERVICE AND MANAGEMENT & LEADERSHIP APPRENTICESHIPS
We are delighted to announce that the new Apprenticeship qualifications in Business Administration, Customer Service and Management and Leadership have now been launched.
These qualifications are designed to meet the changing demands of Apprenticeship frameworks. As such, at Levels 2–3 they combine the knowledge and competence components. This means that within each suite there is a single qualification per level, made up of both knowledge and competence units. Qualifications at Level 4 and above remain as separate competence and knowledge qualifications.
If you are enrolling apprenticeship candidates on apprenticeships in any of these areas, they must be entered for the new qualifications.
Download the notice for full details.
CREATIVE IMEDIA, CREATIVE AND DIGITAL MEDIA AND PREPARING TO WORK QUALIFICATIONS REVIEW
The following qualifications have been reviewed as still being fit for purpose, meaning that centres can continue to make entries to 31/12/2016.
Download this notice as a PDF file
OCR would like to remind centres entering for Unit B324: Production Portfolio in Media Studies that teachers must not provide templates or model answers.
This is made clear on page 26 of the specification. Further clarification is provided on page 8 of the JCQ Instructions for conducting controlled assessments which states that: ‘Centres must not provide model answers or writing frames specific to the task (such as outlines, paragraph headings or section headings) unless the specification or subject-specific guidance states otherwise’.
Teachers who do provide templates or model answers should be aware that this constitutes malpractice and will be dealt with accordingly.
UPDATE ON ONLINE ON-DEMAND TESTING FOR OCR CAMBRIDGE PROGRESSION
We’re always looking for ways to improve our service and on 1 September we ran a pilot on on-demand online testing for OCR Cambridge Progression with some of the most popular units for Cambridge Progression English.
Following the successful launch of the pilot we will extend this to include the most popular Maths units on 29 September.
You will notice that there will no longer be separate assessment windows for these units. You simply make entries* and let learners sit the test when you want to: ‘online on-demand’ tests.
Just a reminder that our online on-demand service is designed to be even more convenient for you. You will be able to manage the scheduling of tests much more effectively – and you could get results within as little as two working days from the date a test has been taken for easier administration.
To find out more about the testing options and the processes involved, please take a look at the Cambridge Progression Admin Guide.
We have listened to your feedback regarding OCR Cambridge Progression pass marks and we will be publishing these on the website shortly.
Please keep your eye on the OCR website where you will find this information.
If you have any queries about this notice, please call our Customer Contact Centre on 024 7685 1509.
We currently are working with Ofqual to update the specification and prescribed works for AS Music H142 unit G353.
A provisional list of the prescribed works for 2015–2018, pending accreditation from Ofqual, is attached and will be updated on the OCR website as soon as possible.
Download this notice and the provisional list.
OUTGOING BUSINESS SKILLS QUALIFICATIONS LAST CERTIFICATION DATE – 31 DECEMBER 2014
As you may already be aware, the last certification date for the Level 1 and 2 Business Skills qualifications is 31 December 2014. OCR will continue to support and assess the qualifications up to the final certification date for these qualifications.
Download the full notice to see further details and to see the last certification date for the Level 3 qualification.
Download the full notice as a PDF
The OCR Admin Guide and Entry Codes: 14–19 qualifications 2014/15 will arrive in OCR centres registered for general qualifications during the week commencing 8 September 2014.
Please refer to the Notice to centres below for further information.
04694 OCR Level 2 Certificate for the Children and Young People’s Workforce – QAN: 500/9792/1
04696 OCR Level 3 Diploma for the Children and Young People’s Workforce – QAN: 500/9186/4
Due to changes in the structure and the need to remove mandatory units or pathways, OCR is replacing these qualifications.
Withdrawal of emergency first aid unit
Unfortunately, it has not been possible to extend the Emergency first aid skills unit, as The Chartered Institute of Environmental Health have recommended that all Awarding Organisations remove it from their qualifications. This unit will be withdrawn from the suite of qualifications from 30 November 2014.
New MAPS e-portfolio
MAPS is an online e-portfolio system that can be used for the whole assessment and moderation process. It can be used by your candidates to upload their digital evidence, link it to allocated OCR qualification units and once complete hand it in to their teachers for marking. The teachers can then mark their candidates' work on-screen to confirm it meets all of the assessment criteria and then submit it to OCR for moderation.
The following qualifications are now available in MAPS for your centre to use:
For these qualifications the use of MAPS is optional not mandatory. However, we believe MAPS provides many benefits, so we will automatically setup your centre in MAPS if you make an entry after 23 June 2014.
If your centre does not want to use MAPS for either of these new qualifications then you should let us know by visiting the ‘Centre preferences’ page in Interchange and completing the opt-out.
If you have opted-out of using MAPS for a particular qualification, but we have already provided you with login details, then simply ignore these.
A number of support videos are now available in the Help section within MAPS. They cover all of the key tasks to be carried out in MAPS by students and teachers. In addition, within the Help section, the teacher’s user guide has been updated and includes a useful flowchart showing the workflow for using MAPS to deliver OCR qualifications in your centre. The student’s user guide will be updated soon.
It is now possible, for unnamed entries only, to create a claim directly from MAPS when submitting a batch of work for moderation. This avoids having to enter the students’ details into Interchange when creating the claim and will ensure the work is submitted in MAPS at the same time as the claim is created in Interchange.
The new claims integration process is covered in one of the new support videos mentioned above.
To allow claims to be automatically created in Interchange from MAPS, for unnamed entries only, it is necessary to collect students’ date of birth and gender. When setting up your students, either manually or using the csv import, please remember to include this data. For existing students in MAPS, you can you can update their details to include this data as required when submitting work for moderation.
Facebook single sign-on for students
From 16 June, students with an account in both MAPS and Facebook can link their accounts to allow them to login to MAPS using their Facebook login details.
The new Facebook single sign-on is covered in one of the new support videos mentioned above.
LiveAssess is a module within MAPS that allows for the real time capture of a candidates’ evidence using text, drawing, mindmap, audio and video tools. The evidence is saved within the candidates’ portfolio and is marked in the normal ways using the evidence checklist or the Red Pen Tool.
We are working with the supplier to create LiveAssess tasks for a number of units from the Employability Skills qualification. We will let you know when the LiveAssess units are available.
From 8 September 2014 OCR will be your first point of contact for support for either:
You can contact us in several different ways:
TAG Assessment will continue to respond to queries for a period of time as first line support is transitioned to OCR. However after this date they may ask you to contact OCR or transfer you directly to us.
A series of updates to MAPS3 for Creative iMedia have taken place.
MAPS2 v MAPS3
The developments summarised in this update apply to MAPS3 only and do not apply to MAPS2. MAPS3 is the latest version which offers a social network style user interface and in-browser on-screen marking and annotation of digital files using the Red Pen tool.
If you are still using MAPS2 then you may want to consider moving to MAPS3 at a convenient point in the delivery of your Creative iMedia course. This could be when:
You can have students in both MAPS2 and MAPS3 at the same time, but we recommend that you move to MAPS3 as this system is under active development.
A number of support videos are now available in the Help section within MAPS. They cover all of the key tasks to be carried out in MAPS by students and teachers. The teacher’s user guide has been updated and includes a useful flowchart showing the workflow for using MAPS to deliver OCR qualifications in your centre. The student’s user guide will be updated soon. The user guides are also available within the Help section.
The process for claiming units has previously involved creating a claim in Interchange and then using the claim number in MAPS when submitting a batch of work for moderation.
The new claims integration process is covered in one of the new support videos mentioned above and in the teacher’s user guide.
To allow claims to be automatically created in Interchange from MAPS, for unnamed entries only, it is necessary to collect students’ date of birth and gender. When setting up your students, either manually or using the csv import, please remember to include this data. For existing students in MAPS you can update their details to include this data as required when submitting work for moderation.
Students with an account in both MAPS and Facebook can link their accounts to allow them to login to MAPS using their Facebook login details.
If you still use MAPS2 you should continue to raise technical queries with TAG Assessment as necessary. Their contact details are as follows:
Controlled assessment materials June 2016 - Release date for Unit A291 - Marketing and enterprise
The release date for the June 2016 Controlled Assessment materials for unit A291 (Marketing and Enterprise) will be 1 September 2014. This is to ensure that there is no issue between the 2014, 2015 and 2016 materials being available simultaneously.
The materials will be available for download from OCR Interchange from 1 September.
We are pleased to announce that the last entry date for the Supporting Teaching and Learning in Schools suite of qualifications has been further extended to 31 December 2015.
Since the accreditation of the Level 1/2 Certificate in Living Texts (J945) in 2011, government policy about Key Stage 4 performance tables has changed. This was in response to issues identified in the Wolf report. In January 2012, the Department for Education (DfE) published a list of qualifications for 14–16 year olds that qualified for secondary school KS4 performance tables from 2014 onwards. In early 2013, the DfE released new criteria for qualifications receiving points from 2016 onwards.
The Level 1/2 Certificate in Living Texts (J945) did not appear on the DfE’s final list of qualifications published in March 2012 because it did not comply with one of the requirements – that it should include external assessment. In response, OCR considered re-launching the specification to include an examined unit, but ultimately decided that this would not be in the spirit of the specification.
Therefore, OCR will continue to offer only one version of the Level 1/2 Certificate in Living Texts (J945) and this will not be included in the list of qualifications that carry performance points.
The following scenarios provide exemplification:
If you would like any further clarification please contact us at OCR.LivingTexts@ocr.org.uk.
The BBC recently advised on their website that the WebWise resources that provide the underpinning knowledge and skills for candidates to pass the WebWise assessments would be removed from their current location on 31 July 2014.
OCR was not consulted about this change and we have been working with the BBC to provide alternative resources.
Unfortunately, due to technical issues, it proved impossible to retain the resources in their original format beyond the end of July 2014. However we are pleased to advise that we now have access to some of the resources on a new WebWise page and we have been able to add additional links to other resources that will enable centres to continue to offer the WebWise assessments as evidence for the ITQ and CLAiT International qualifications.
The full list of resource links can be found under Support Materials on the qualification pages for ITQ and CLAiT International below.
If you have any queries about this notice, please call our Customer Contact Centre on 024 76 851509.
The latest update of the simplified funding rates catalogue from the Skills Funding Agency (SFA) confirms that all levels and units of OCR’s Cambridge Progression qualifications are now funded.
Back in June, the SFA published new guidance on funding for QCF English and maths qualifications. We welcome the new guidance and are pleased to confirm that all of the Cambridge Progression suite of qualifications will remain fundable for learners looking to improve their English and maths skills. The original announcement in June confirmed funding for the vast majority of Cambridge Progression qualifications. This has now been extended to Level 2 certificates and to all the units of one or two credits.
A list of the approved qualifications can be found on GOV.UK.
Please note that there are two tabs:
We’ve produced a series of frequently asked questions to support centres in this funding announcement.
If you have any queries about this notice, please call our Customer Contact Centre on 02476 851509 or email email@example.com.
The availability of model answers to live controlled assessment tasks for two units of GCSE Computing J275 on a number of public websites means OCR has had to act so that the assessment is not compromised and all students receive the results they deserve.
One course of action that OCR follows if sensitive information such as this is available is to ask public websites to remove the information as soon as possible. After a school got in touch last week to raise its concerns, OCR reviewed the options in line with regulatory requirements.
We have now completed that review - and while there is no suggestion of widespread malpractice - we have to act to avoid the slightest possibility that one candidate could gain an unfair advantage over another. As a result, we have decided that with immediate effect OCR will withdraw the existing controlled assessment tasks and will be replacing them for the next academic year on Interchange by 15 September 2014. To avoid penalising the vast majority of hard-working students and teachers, those candidates who have completed or just started their controlled assessment tasks with entries in June 2015 will still be able to submit their work. Schools and colleges will however be asked to submit the names of their candidates and the tasks for each unit by the end of September, and we will be in touch over the coming weeks with further details. OCR’s examiners will be extra vigilant when overseeing the marking process and will use a range of tools to ensure that no candidate has gained an unfair advantage.
We apologise for the disruption caused by this decision, and for an earlier communication posted in error on our website on Friday before today’s decision was reached.
For answers to common questions, please download our FAQs below.
Please note that the last entry date for the Administration (Business Professional) suite has been extended to 31 August 2015..
You may already have received a letter or an email about this specification. To ensure that all centres that may be teaching or about to teach this specification are aware of this important information, we have released this update as a Notice to Centres, in order to reach all relevant Heads of Department and Examinations Officers.
After running two History A Levels for the last six years, OCR has reluctantly decided that it will not submit a new draft specification for History B for accreditation as part of its wider programme of qualification reform.
This means that the current GCE History B specification will be available to teach in September 2014 but not beyond and the last assessment for this specification will be in June 2016. We will confirm the situation regarding resit opportunities once Ofqual has confirmed with all awarding bodies the arrangements for resits of qualifications ending in 2016.
OCR will be formally withdrawing GCE History B from the Ofqual list of accredited qualifications, in line with Ofqual’s Conditions of Recognition, using the final assessment opportunity dates above. We will take all reasonable steps to protect the interests of Learners in relation to this qualification and its withdrawal.
While this is disappointing news for many, we wanted to take this opportunity to thank you for your dedication and commitment in supporting this distinctive A Level over a number of years. We also hope you will consider the benefits of transferring to a new broader single specification – GCE History A – that, once accredited, will encompass the approach and interests favoured by users of our current History B specification.
The major reason for the decision not to offer a reformed GCE History B qualification for 2015 is low uptake. The present GCE History B entry numbers have remained stubbornly low (under 1200 candidates) over the last five years, despite much input and support from ourselves and the wider History community, and there is no evidence to show that numbers will grow. This figure compares poorly with the numbers taking History A which are over 12,000 and rising. There are also some technical challenges and compromises involved in making a new ‘co-teachable’ History B specification and the development of this qualification comes at a time of the enormous commitment and cost of the largest programme of qualification reform in a generation. Although OCR is a ‘not for profit’ organisation, we are forced to make hard choices in the current climate and the expense of offering a second specification given its relatively poor reach is no longer justifiable.
We are determined to offer history teachers and students choice through our new and expanded History A specification. Once accredited for teaching from 2015, History A will offer over 58 topics, including some exciting new options which have never featured on an A Level specification before.
OCR will be concentrating its efforts on supporting and managing the single new History A specification. Our history team will be contacting schools to offer support in transferring to the new GCE History A specification for September 2015. We will offer every support to schools wishing to make this transition, including detailed mapping documents to the closest equivalent History A topics (for those who want to preserve their content choices and resources), specially-produced transition guides on changing the teaching approach, and comprehensive guidance on the requirements of the History A qualification. We will also be offering free INSET specifically for schools making this transition.
We would like to take this opportunity to confirm that we are committed to supporting the current GCSE A (SHP) specification and to redeveloping this in line with the timetable for GCSE reform. Once again, we regret having had to reach this decision and appreciate the impact on your school. If you have further queries, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on 01223 553998 to speak to Mike Goddard or Grant Robertson of the History team.
Scheme codes: 05923, 05924, 05925 & 05926
It has not been possible to extend the Emergency first aid skills unit, as The Chartered Institute of Environmental Health have recommended that all awarding organisations remove it from their qualifications. This unit will be withdrawn from the suite of qualifications from November 2014:
You may continue to deliver this unit up to November 2014. However, you will not be able to make claims for this unit after 30 November 2014. To ensure that you are able to certificate this unit, final claims must be confirmed via DCS or External Verification processes prior to this deadline. We will update all relevant documentation to this effect.
Note: the end date of 30 November 2014 applies only to Emergency first aid skills (Y/600/1250)
We would also like to confirm that the qualification end date for the above qualifications has been extended to 31 December 2016 (with the exception of the above unit). If this unit is not included in your programme of learning then you do not need to take any action and can continue to deliver this suite to your learners.
Scheme codes affected: 10160-10172 and 10181-10183
We confirm that the qualification end date for the above qualifications has been extended to 31 December 2015 (with the exception of two units – see below). If these units are not included in your programme of learning then you do not need to take any action and can continue to deliver this suite to your learners.
We are currently reviewing the Life and Living Skills Suite in order to better meet the needs of our centres; we will contact you shortly with more information on this. If you are interested in being involved in consultation for this review then please email your details to contactusLLS@ocr.org.uk
It has not been possible to extend the following two units, due to regulatory requirements, so they are being withdrawn from this suite of qualifications from September 2015:
You may continue to deliver these units. However, you will not be able to make claims for certification for these units after 30 September 2015. Please ensure that your learners have achieved these units prior to this date. We will update all relevant documentation to this effect.
Note: the end date of 30 September 2015 applies only to G2 and N18.
Please note that the last entry date for the Text Processing (Business Professional) suite has been further extended to 31 March 2017. Further information will be available shortly.
Set texts for examination in June 2016
Unit code A144 data analysis task: Wave speed
It has come to our attention that there is a problem with the A144 data analysis task, Wave speed, for submission in 2015. As a result, this task has been withdrawn with immediate effect.
To be fair to all candidates, this task will no longer be valid for submission in June 2015. An alternative task will be uploaded onto OCR Interchange as soon as possible.
If your candidates have already completed this task, this will not be valid. They will unfortunately have to complete the alternative task or one of the other data analysis tasks for submission in June 2015.
We apologise for any inconvenience caused as a result of this issue.
New developments, extensions and withdrawals information
OCR will launch new apprenticeship qualifications in Business Administration on 1 September 2014.
At Levels 2 and 3, the apprenticeship qualifications will combine the knowledge and competence components of the frameworks, meaning that there will be a single qualification per level, made up of both knowledge and competence units. Framework components at Level 4 will remain as separate competence and knowledge qualifications.
As a result of the newly-developed apprenticeship qualifications, the following changes to our pan-sector qualifications have been made:
New Apprenticeship qualifications
The New Apprenticeship qualifications detailed on the table below are due to be launched on 1 September 2014. At Levels 2 and 3, these will replace the existing, separate competence and knowledge qualifications as apprenticeship framework components from this date. At Level 4 a new NVQ qualification has been developed and will directly replace the existing NVQ on the framework. The existing OCR Level 4 Diploma in Business and Administration (10337) will continue to be included as the knowledge component on the higher framework.
If you are enrolling apprenticeship candidates on apprenticeship qualifications in Business Administration after 31 August 2014, they must be enrolled on the new qualifications identified.
OCR will launch new apprenticeship qualifications in Customer Service on 1 September 2014.
At Levels 2 and 3, the apprenticeship qualifications will combine the knowledge and competence components of the frameworks, meaning that there will be a single qualification per level, made up of both knowledge and competence units.
As a result of the newly-developed apprenticeship qualifications, the following changes to our Customer Service qualifications have been made:
The New Apprenticeship qualifications detailed on the table below are due to be launched on 1 September 2014. These will replace the existing, separate competence and knowledge qualifications as apprenticeship framework components from this date.
If you are enrolling apprenticeship candidates on apprenticeship qualifications in Customer Service after 31 August 2014, they must be enrolled on the new qualifications identified.
OCR will launch new apprenticeship qualifications in Management and Leadership on 1 September 2014.
At Levels 2 and 3, the apprenticeship qualifications will combine the knowledge and competence components of the frameworks, meaning that there will be a single qualification per level, made up of both knowledge and competence units. Framework components at Level 5 will remain as separate competence and knowledge qualifications.
The New Apprenticeship qualifications detailed on the table below are due to be launched on 1 September 2014. At Levels 2–3, these will replace the existing, separate competence and knowledge qualifications as apprenticeship framework components from this date. At Level 5 a new NVQ qualification has been developed and will directly replace the existing NVQ on the framework. The existing OCR Level 5 Diploma in Management and Leadership (10336) will continue to be included as the knowledge component on the higher framework.
If you are enrolling apprenticeship candidates on apprenticeship qualifications in Management and Leadership after 31 August 2014, they must be enrolled on the new qualifications identified.
Autumn 2014: OCR screen reader and legal audio-transcription units
Please note that there will be no Autumn 2014 series for the following units:
Summer 2015: OCR Welsh Text Processing
Please note that in 2015, there will only be one session available for the Welsh Text Processing units (listed below). This will be in Spring 2015. There will be no Summer 2015 session.
We have reviewed our vocational languages qualification provision. In the light of changes in market demand and funding arrangements, OCR has taken the decision to extend French, German, Spanish and Welsh vocational language suites and to withdraw from provision of our remaining vocational language subjects.
In order to avoid scripts going missing and results being delayed, here is our advice when returning scripts, particularly when two papers have been sat in the same slot:
Reminder for candidates producing evidence for moderated and verified qualifications
It is the centre’s responsibility to ensure that candidates comply with the Data Protection Act when producing evidence for summative assessment.
Candidates must not reference another individual’s personal details in any evidence produced for summative assessment. It is the candidate’s responsibility to ensure that any evidence which includes another individual’s personal details is anonymised to comply with the Data Protection Act.
We will be adding this information to centre handbooks for new qualifications and all moderated and verified qualifications when they are reviewed.
New Business Administration, Customer Service and Management & Leadership Apprenticeships
As advised in April, OCR have worked with Skills CfA to revise the following apprenticeship qualifications:
The intention is that new apprenticeship qualifications will be available in each of these areas from 1 September 2014.
The new apprenticeship qualifications have been designed to meet the changing demands of apprenticeship frameworks. As such, at Levels 2–3, the revised qualifications will combine the knowledge and competence components of the frameworks. This means that, within each suite, there will be a single qualification per level, made up of both knowledge and competence units. Qualifications at Level 4 and above will remain as separate competence and knowledge qualifications.
If you are enrolling apprenticeship candidates on apprenticeship qualifications in any of these areas after 31 August 2014, they must be enrolled on the new qualifications. The existing, separate NVQ and knowledge qualifications will not be included on the apprenticeship frameworks after this date (with the exception of a small number of Level 4 and above knowledge qualifications which may still be appropriate).
New apprenticeship web pages will soon be available on the dedicated apprenticeship area of the OCR website. Please visit this area for regular updates, including draft units and rules of combination for each new qualification.
We are aware that many of our centres offer qualifications in these subjects to non-apprenticeship candidates. As such, we are still likely to offer stand-alone NVQs and knowledge qualifications in these areas from September 2014. Further updates regarding our intended non-apprenticeship provision from September 2014 will also be posted to the web pages as they become available.
You can sign up for email updates in these subjects to ensure that you receive direct updates via email, and join our social networks where regular updates are posted.
Are you aware of the last entry/certification notification for vocational qualifications?
The Last entry/certification notification for vocational qualifications is a list of vocational qualifications with last entry or certification dates coming up in the next six months. It also includes the dates for the last exam window/session/date for qualifications where this is applicable.
This notification can be found in the key dates and timetables section of the OCR website.
Regularly checking the latest version of this list will help you ensure your candidates are entered for qualifications before the last entry dates and that all certificates are claimed by the last certification dates. Please be aware that the final certification date is the last date that OCR will produce certificates. We therefore advise that centres plan for completion of all candidate assessments at least two months prior to these dates.
The Last entry/certification notification for vocational qualifications was formerly known as the Last entry/certification notification for post–19 qualifications. It has been renamed to clearly signpost the full range of qualifications included in this notice.
For information about OCR’s vocational provision, including updates on new and revised qualifications, please view the Vocational Education and Skills page of the OCR website.
OCR Art and Design GCE, GCSE and ELC: Key information and guidance for visiting moderation - June series 2014
This guidance has been issued in order to clarify and update the procedures and processes for the 2014 moderation of the above Art and Design qualifications.
Please ensure that this is read by all teachers that deliver OCR Art and Design qualifications in your centre. The guidance is to support teachers and centres in their effective administration of OCR Art and Design qualifications.
It is to be read in conjunction with the individual specification information, Instructions to Centres and relevant Teacher’s Handbook available on the relevant qualification pages of the OCR website.
Much of the process will remain exactly the same as that given for June 2013. You should continue to make entries and submit marks to OCR and your Visiting Moderator by the required date. Arrangements for the visit can be discussed with you Moderator. Work should be set out in rank order, by individual unit for GCE, GCSE and for ELC by component for the moderation to take place.
On the initial telephone conversation to arrange the visit, the moderator will run through a series of checks, to ensure that all the correct paperwork has been sent to OCR. The moderator will then arrange the date for the visit. Whilst every attempt will be made to be accommodating, the demands of the brief moderation period require the moderator to inform the centre of the time and date of availability. Your moderator will then email the sample required and confirm the date and time of the visiting moderation. This email will be sent to your centre’s official email address.
Team Leaders or Senior Moderators will accompany the visiting moderator in selected centres as part of the OCR quality assurance process. On occasion, it may be necessary for a senior moderator to undertake a follow-in visit. You will be informed of this by your visiting moderator or Senior Moderator. The Team Leaders or Senior Moderators will also choose work for either the Grade Award or training and educational purposes in accordance to the JCQ and Ofqual requirements for all awarding bodies. Only one unit of work per candidate will be chosen. The UPS courier service will be used to collect work. This is very simple and clear to use, and your moderator will be able to give guidance where necessary.
It is expected that all candidates will photograph their work where appropriate to create an e-portfolio for reference purposes when applying to College and University. This will also assist centres to build centre resources. Further guidance is available on the relevant qualification pages of the OCR website. Please note that Candidate Permission forms are no longer required (see JCQ instructions to awarding bodies).
On completion of the moderation visit, your moderator will no longer give an abbreviated verbal report to one designated member of staff. This is to fulfil the Ofqual Code of Practice for all Awarding Bodies for GCE, GCSE and ELC qualifications. The Centre Report, which will be sent to centre when results are issued, will consist of the moderator’s findings with regard to the sample seen, observations and scaling, the moderation display, the overall trend within the centre. It will also inform the centre of how and when to access the advice, support and training available, including how to contact the Subject Specialist and Subject Area Support (SAS) team for Art and Design specifications.
The Moderator will notify OCR of the outcome of the moderation. Centres will receive the outcome of moderation and the enhanced written report of the moderation in the August release of results.
All centres have the right to request a review of moderation post results through the formal Enquiries about Results (EAR) procedure. This follows the JCQ guidelines for centres and awarding bodies. Details can be found on the JCQ website, or in the OCR Admin guide and entry codes: 14-19 qualifications available to download via the OCR website.
We are pleased to announce that OCR’s Level 3 Certificate in Quantitative Methods (MEI) has received the following UCAS tariff points:
Revised basedata for June 2014
We have updated the General Qualifications basedata files for the June 2014 series to include the QN codes in the Option file for GCSE English J350 and GCSE English Language J355 units and certification.
The updated files (Issue 4) are available from the OCR website and should be downloaded in the usual way to ensure your management information system is up to date. Please note that downloading the basedata again will not affect any data already sent to OCR.
Live assignments for Creative iMedia levels 1, 2 and 3 (entry codes 04304–04312)
All OCR live assignments for the Creative iMedia suite Levels 1–3 have been reviewed. This is to ensure that the assignment tasks are consistent with the full range of assessment criteria for each unit.
Please note that for all future submissions, the updated assignments must be used and centres must destroy copies of the previous versions. Changes are as follows:
Level 3 live assignments: In general, many of these had an extra task in the evaluation section. This required learners to 'Provide an explanatory narrative on the creation process, identifying for example key stages, tools and techniques used'. This is not a separate assessment criterion in any unit and therefore it has been removed. In a similar way, several units were asking for slightly more in the tasks than was required by the assessment criteria – these too have been amended.
Important information about Units 304 and 305
Unit 304: There have been changes made to the OCR live assignment for Unit 304. A version had been available on OCR Interchange where there was an inconsistency against the criteria that related to Learning Outcome 1 and 2. This version has now been replaced in OCR Interchange with an amended assignment.
Unit 305: The assessment criteria for 4.3 and 4.4 for Unit 305 refer to a 3D character. The learning outcome is in the context of evaluating the 3D effects against a client brief for sound effects – so 3D characters are for sound. This version has now been replaced in OCR Interchange with an amended assignment, reflecting that the assessment criteria concerns 3D sound.
If your candidates are part way through an assignment, you must make sure their evidence meets the assessment criteria in the unit (please note our instruction about Unit 305 above). Where centres create their own assignments, it is the centres’ responsibility to ensure that their assignments still meet the requirements of the assessment criteria or learners are at risk of not evidencing the unit fully.
Please be advised that OCR will not be issuing a new list of set texts for A Level English Literature in 2014. Due to the timetable for General Qualifications Reform, we will continue with the current lists of set texts until the end of the life of this specification.
The new GCE English Literature specification will be available for first teaching from 2015. We anticipate accreditation from Ofqual by September 2014, at which point draft versions of the new specification, along with new set text lists, will be available on the OCR website.
Following a review of our qualification offer in the light of falling market demand, OCR has reluctantly decided to withdraw selected Learning, Development and Support Services qualifications. OCR will of course continue to support and assess the qualifications up to the final certification date.
OCR are currently working with Skills CfA to revise the following vocational qualification suites:
The intention is that new qualifications will be available in each of these areas from 1 September 2014.
The Skills CfA-led revisions are focusing on qualifications designed to meet the changing demands of Apprenticeship frameworks. As such, it is intended that at Levels 1–3, revised qualifications will combine the knowledge and competence components of the frameworks. This means that within each suite there will be a single qualification per level, made up of both knowledge and competence units (with both types of unit being included in the mandatory group). Qualifications at Level 4 and above are likely to remain as separate competence and knowledge qualifications.
The revision and quality assurance process for these qualifications is currently underway and we will make the revised units available on our web pages as soon as final versions become available. Please visit our qualification webpages for further updates regarding the units and accreditation timescales:
Vocational Qualifications (QCF, NVQ, NQF) - Administration
Vocational Qualifications (QCF, NVQ, NQF) - Business
We are aware that many of our centres offer qualifications in these subjects to non-apprenticeship candidates. We have sent a survey asking for your views on suitable qualifications for these candidates moving forwards. Further updates regarding our intended non-apprenticeship provision from September 2014 will also be posted to the qualification webpages as they become available. It is likely that we will continue to offer both competence and knowledge qualifications suitable for non-apprenticeship candidates.
Please sign up for email updates in these subjects to ensure that you receive direct updates via email. You can also join our social networks where regular updates are posted.
Please note that from the June 2014 series onwards there will be a change to the number of samples of candidate work we request for moderation purposes.
The following details show the total sample sizes which will be requested:
For units moderated by post and via the OCR Repository, this should reduce the frequency of any requests for additional samples, which we recognise have often been requested inconveniently late in the moderation process.
Due to the system changes required for this development, there is an important impact on Cambridge Nationals units which are to be assessed by visiting moderation. This will impact the June 2014 series only.
As these system changes are implemented, and in order to ensure that there is no detrimental effect on the moderation process, the sending of sample request emails and the main moderation visit window will take place later than planned.
You will not receive your sample request email immediately following the receipt of your marks for units moderated by visit (which are due by 31 March) – the sample request email will be sent when the main moderation window opens, which is now early May.
No visiting moderation for Cambridge Nationals will take place until after 15 May 2014. Your moderator will contact you over the next few weeks to arrange a mutually convenient date for your visit. If you have been contacted already and your agreed visit date falls before early May, your moderator will contact you again to rearrange your visit.
We apologise for any inconvenience caused regarding visiting arrangements this series.
Following a review of our qualification offer in light of falling market demand, OCR has reluctantly decided to withdraw the ALL (00339) and NSP (00330) schemes. Due to the length of programme learners typically follow, two years advance notice is being given to centres.
Claims for certification for these schemes will not be available after 31 August 2016.
Following queries regarding the submission of controlled assessment tasks for the specifications listed above, we are clarifying the rules under the new linear assessment structure.
From June 2014 and for all subsequent examination series, all units must be entered at the end of the course when candidates are certificating. For controlled assessment units where prescribed tasks are set by OCR, such tasks are made available two years in advance of the relevant series (for instance, tasks for 2016 submissions will be made available in Summer 2014).
Centres must ensure that the controlled assessment tasks relate to the year in which the course is being completed. For instance, candidates intending to certificate in the June 2014 or November 2014 resit only examination series must submit responses to the 2014 controlled assessment tasks. Where tasks differ from unit to unit, even if the assessment criteria and mark schemes are identical (for instance, the Imaginative Writing essays in Unit A642 and Section B of Unit A651), the tasks attempted must be those set for the unit being entered.
The same is true of work produced for a different Awarding Body which uses the same marking criteria (for instance, work produced for AQA’s GCSE English controlled assessment). The work cannot simply be marked and submitted for OCR, as the prescribed tasks for any other Awarding Body will not be valid.
Responses to controlled assessment tasks for any other year, unit or Awarding Body will not be accepted and any marks relating to such tasks will not be credited towards certification. According to the JCQ Instructions for Conducting Controlled Assessment, it is the centre’s responsibility to ensure that work is completed on the appropriate set tasks:
"The centre must make arrangements for candidates to undertake the correct task. Awarding bodies will do all they can to protect candidates’ interests but in some cases it may not be possible to accept work based on the wrong task. Centres should therefore, take great care to ensure that they issue the correct task to candidates." (Section 3, p7).
The only exception to this is where candidates have previously certificated, are resitting externally assessed units and carrying forward controlled assessment marks from a previous series. In this instance, it is the uniform mark only which is carried forward. The actual work which originally produced the mark is not relevant to the series in which the carry forward entry is made.
Candidates can only carry forward the result of a controlled assessment unit that has already been used towards their last certification of the same qualification. Please be aware that controlled assessment uniform marks may only be carried forward if they have been used for certification once already.
If candidates have previously certificated and are resitting externally assessed units and submitting new controlled assessment responses, their responses must be to the controlled assessment tasks for the examination series, unit and Awarding Body in which they are re-certificating. Should a fresh attempt be made (with the appropriate tasks) and used for certification, it will then be the uniform mark for that fresh attempt which may be carried forward for use in any future resit entries.
The last entry and certification dates for the Text Processing (Business Professional) suite have been extended. The last date for entries for all the qualifications is now 31 December 2014.
Some of the unit reference numbers, provided by Ofqual, have also been updated. The content of the units remain unchanged and OCR’s systems recognise the ‘old’ and ‘new’ unit reference numbers as equivalents. You can therefore continue to make entries and claims as normal.
For more information, please see the PDF document below:
When this qualification suite was launched in September 2013, OCR provided draft Candidate Evidence Booklets for those centres who wished to use them, as an interim before final booklets were launched. These draft booklets were removed and replaced by final versions on the OCR website in November 2013.
It is essential that the draft Candidate Evidence Booklets are not submitted to your OCR Moderator after Friday 14 March 2014. Draft booklets submitted after this date will not be accepted unless mapped to the Candidate Evidence Checklist as they will be moderated as alternative tasks.
Remember that centres wishing to use the Candidate Evidence Booklets may change any task, or part of a task, to make the context more appropriate for their learners. However, alternative tasks or naturally occurring candidate evidence must meet the assessment criteria and be accompanied by a Candidate Evidence Checklist. All evidence must be marked and internally assessed within the centre before submission. Centre assessors must use the OCR Assessment Guidance for the unit when assessing the work. Please see Section 5 of the Centre Handbook and the Introduction for Tutors in the Candidate Evidence Booklet for more information regarding the assessment of these qualifications. These are available to download on the qualification pages of the OCR website.
Please note that for Unit 2 Learning to be financially aware and Unit 10 Learning to be financially capable (Assessment Criterion 3.1) the teacher/tutor may provide learners with information in order for the learner to identify their total income for one week, but the learner needs to identify their own total income independently.
The Tutor may provide information to learners regarding income possibilities. For example, which benefits they may receive, or list alternative income possibilities, such as pocket money or a Saturday job. The learner can use the information provided in order to identify their own income. The figure itself should not be provided by the Tutor, as currently stated in the Teaching Content of the units. This announcement also applies to the outgoing Employability Skills qualifications (10178–10180 and 00017–00019) for Units 2 and 10 Learning to be financially capable.
The Employability Skills suite of qualifications has a wide selection of free resources available, including delivery guides, lesson elements and resources links. Please visit the OCR website to find out more.
Visit our Continuing Professional Development (CPD) hub to download more free resources, watch a webinar or book on to a face to face event for Employability Skills, at: www.cpdhub.ocr.org.uk.
The BBC WebWise e-assessments were removed from their website at the end of 2013. OCR is pleased to advise that we have been granted a licence to offer these e-assessments, with effect from 1 February 2014.
The assessments are based on the resources available on the BBC website, which will continue to be available.
There are three assessments for each of the four units available. These have been uploaded to OCR Interchange and can be found under ‘CLAiT & ITQ’ > ‘Computer based assessment’.
The assessments can be downloaded and completed on-screen, or completed as a paper-based submission. Currently, OCR does not have the full digital version available, but if the assessments are completed on-screen, the candidate answers for the multiple-choice section update to a summary sheet for easy marking. The assessments must be sat under controlled conditions.
Centres will now be required to send (either electronically or paper-based), both the completed script and the centre-marked summary sheet as evidence to the moderator. An evidence checklist will not be required. Only candidates who have achieved 100% for each unit should be submitted. Candidates for CLAiT International may only submit WebWise assessments (‘Using Email’ and ‘Using the Internet’), as evidence for CLAiT Level 1 Unit 8.
Revised basedata file for January 2014: FSMQ, Level 3 certificate, Principal Learning, Project, Entry level certificate, Level 1/2 certificate, Level 2 award, Cambridge Nationals.
Following feedback from centres regarding the omission of some discount codes for the basedata for the January 2014 series, we have updated the file to include the correct codes. The basedata file January 2014 series 1a - z1a14_03 has been updated and is available for you to download. It is the option file o1a14_01.X03 which has been updated.
The updated file is available from the basedata page and should be downloaded in the usual way to ensure your management information system is up to date. Please accept our apologies for any inconvenience this causes.
We have updated the General Qualifications basedata files for the June 2014 series. Please see below for the details of the updated files.
The updated files are available on the basedata page and should be downloaded in the usual way to ensure your management information system is up to date. Please accept our apologies for any inconvenience this causes.
June 2014 series 6a - z6a14_01: GCSE, Entry Level Certificate, Level 2 Award, Level 1 and 2 Certificate and Cambridge Nationals qualifications.
The basedata has been updated to include:
June 2014 series 6b - z6b14_01: GCE, FSMQ, Level 3 Certificate, Principal Learning and Project qualifications.
Following a review of our qualification offer in the light of falling market demand and changes to the funding regime, OCR has reluctantly decided to withdraw the Skills for Life, Living and Employment qualifications listed below.
OCR will of course continue to support and assess the qualifications up to the final certification dates.
Please be aware that the last certification date is the final date OCR will produce certificates. Centres are therefore advised to plan for completion of all candidate assessment at least two months prior to this date.
OCR will continue to offer suitable alternative qualifications including Employability Skills, Personal Life Skills and Life and Living Skills. For further details, please visit the Vocational Qualifications section of the OCR website.
We are pleased to announce that the last entry dates for the following Supporting Teaching and Learning in Schools qualifications have been extended to 31 December 2014 to allow time for a review of the national occupational standards that underpin these qualifications.
From the June 2014 series onwards, the units listed below will no longer be provided in the form of a combined question and answer booklet. Instead, there will be a question booklet and candidates will write their answer in a separate generic answer booklet.
Specimen papers are available on the OCR website to illustrate the format of the question papers at www.ocr.org.uk/qualifications/gcse-ancient-history-j151-j051-from-2012.
After the conclusion of the summer 2013 series, OCR are no longer offering the mixed-science papers A141, A142 and A143 for GCSE Science A. All candidates certificating Science A from summer 2014 onwards will sit the A161, A171 and A181 question papers (separate Biology, Chemistry and Physics papers) in their terminal session. These will be coupled with the existing Controlled Assessment Unit A144 (Case Study and Practical Data Analysis).
Similarly, we will no longer offer the mixed-science papers A151, A152 and A153 for GCSE Additional Science A. All candidates certificating Additional Science A will sit the A162, A172 and A182 question papers (separate Biology, Chemistry and Physics papers) in their terminal session. These will be coupled with the existing Controlled Assessment Unit A154 (Practical Investigation).
As you are probably aware, all science GCSEs will be assessed using a 'linear' (i.e. 100% terminal) model from 2014 onwards. As a result, it will no longer be necessary to have two routes to GCSE Science A and two routes to GCSE Additional Science A, because candidates will sit all of the externally assessed units at the end of the course. Therefore, different teaching routes through the modules will no longer have any impact on the order in which candidates sit the examinations.
Another impact of the removal of mixed papers is that it will no longer be possible for candidates to certificate for a mixed science qualification (Science A, Additional Science A, Further Additional Science A) and any of the separate science qualifications (Biology A, Chemistry A, Physics A) in the same series. It will only be possible to certificate for Science A, Additional Science A and/or Further Additional Science A, or Biology A, Chemistry A and/or Physics A in the same series. It is still permissible to take Science A in Year 10 and then Additional Science or separate sciences in Year 11.
For the June 2014 series, a moderation sample will be requested from all centres making candidate entries for R591 Entry Level Certificate in Science.
Centre assessed marks and Centre authentication forms should be submitted to your moderator as per the normal moderation process. For details of this process, please refer to the OCR Admin guide and entry codes: 14-19 qualifications (including Cambridge Nationals) 2013/14. Section 7.11 of the Guide has been updated to reflect this information.
Over the last few months, all Awarding Organisations have been working with the regulator, Ofqual, to strengthen the controls, moderation and administration in place for practical assessments for GCE science qualifications. These changes are intended to increase the level of confidence that we all can have in the validity of the outcomes for these assessments.
Changes will be introduced over the next six months to achieve the degree of strengthening which is necessary. These changes have been agreed with the regulator.
Starting in the summer 2014 series, moderators will apply a slightly tighter tolerance for the following GCE coursework / practical skills units:
For each of these units, the moderator tolerance will reduce from three marks to two marks. This change is intended to improve the consistency with which the mark schemes / assessment criteria are applied across all centres. Centres should take note of this change when assessing and carrying out internal moderation of candidate work prior to submitting the centre marks to OCR in May 2014 and subsequent years.
Availability of mark schemes
In line with other Awarding Organisations we have agreed to delay the publication of the mark schemes for practical skills tasks from June until the following December. This will commence for tasks to be submitted in the 2015 series. The 2015 tasks and confidential teacher instructions will be published via the OCR secure Interchange website on 1 June 2014 as normal. We appreciate that teachers may be concerned about allowing candidates to undertake the assessment without being fully aware of the expected outcomes. To address this concern, and to ensure that practical procedures work in centres as intended, additional information or guidance may be given in the confidential teacher instructions. The mark schemes will be published on Interchange on 1 December 2014. It will still be permissible for centres to carry out the tasks at any time after publication and in advance of having access to the mark schemes.
This change will apply to the following GCE coursework / practical skills units:
This change is intended to provide more security for the confidential mark schemes.
Please note that the entry deadlines for the following qualifications have changed. The last date for entries for all of the following qualifications is now 31 August 2014.
The OCR Admin Guide: Vocational Qualifications 2013/14 has been updated: www.ocr.org.uk/admin-guides.
Following a review of our qualifications on offer, in the light of falling market demand and changes to the funding regime, OCR has reluctantly decided to withdraw the Logistics qualifications listed below.
OCR will of course continue to support and assess the qualifications up to the last certification date for these qualifications.
These qualifications affected are as follows:
Please note that the last certification date for this qualification has been brought forward.
Some of these qualifications form part of Intermediate and Advanced Level Apprenticeship Frameworks within the Logistics sector. Centres offering these apprenticeships will need to take these dates into account with their Apprenticeship candidates.
Some of the unit numbers, provided by Ofqual, have also been updated. The content of the units remain unchanged and OCR’s systems recognise the ‘old’ and ‘new’ unit numbers as equivalents. You can therefore continue to make entries and claims as normal.
The OCR Admin guide: Vocational qualifications 2013/14 has been updated to reflect these changes The qualification pages of the OCR website are currently being updated to include the new unit codes.
The new unit reference numbers are listed overleaf.
The new OCR Level 4 Diploma in Professional Competence for IT and Telecoms Professionals (10351) is now accredited and live for entries.
It is assessed in the workplace and is suitable for candidates working in the IT and Telecoms sector.
If you wish to apply for approval to offer this Level 4 verified qualification, please complete the centre approval form, which is available from the approvals page.
The OCR Admin guide: Vocational qualifications 2013/14 has been updated to include details of this qualification.
If you have any queries about this notice, please call our Customer Contact Centre on 024 76 851509
Following a review of our qualifications on offer, in the light of falling market demand and changes to the funding regime, OCR has reluctantly decided to withdraw the two qualifications listed below.
The qualifications affected are as follows:
Please note that OCR will continue to offer suitable alternative qualifications including Children’s Care, Level 3 Learning and Development, and Level 3 Diploma in Children and Young People’s Workforce. For more information on these qualifications please visit the qualification pages.
The last entry and certification dates for the Administration (Business Professional) suite have been extended.
The Level 1 end dates will be updated in line with the other end dates when the Level 1 units have been reviewed by the CFA.
The OCR Admin guide and entry codes: 14–19 qualifications (including Cambridge Nationals) 2013/14 has been updated with the correct information regarding resit rules for the Level 2 Award and Level 1/2 Certificate. This is now consistent with the information already provided in the specifications.
This information applies to three specifications only:
The OCR Admin Guide and Entry Codes: 14–19 Qualifications has been updated to include details of the following rules for the Level 2 Award and Level 1/2 Certificate:
Replacement pages are provided below with details of these changes. You may wish to update these in your hard copy Admin Guide. Please replace the current pages 13 and 14 with the new pages 13, 13A and 14 below.
You can find the latest version on the Admin guides page.
From March 2012, the CPC Syllabus was revised to take account of the change to the open book format for the P2 and R2 Case Study exams. Following the seven sessions in this new format, we have reviewed the suitability of the current syllabus.
We found that the syllabus was over-restrictive in terms of subject areas to be examined in Case Studies and likely to lead to papers becoming too predictable to qualify as a Level 3 exam.
We have therefore expanded the subject areas to be examined in P2 and R2 papers. We have also decided to change the balance of questions to be included in P1 and R1 Multiple Choice papers. These changes are in effect from the CPC exams to be sat in June 2014.
The updated Syllabus is available on the qualification webpage.
Full details of the subject areas concerned, the types of questions that will be asked, and the numbers of questions which will be asked for each syllabus area are available in the new Student and Tutor Guide for CPC, which can also be downloaded from the qualification webpage.
Withdrawal of qualification
Following the introduction of the new Specification of Apprenticeship Standards for England (SASE), OCR has decided to withdraw the qualification below, and replace it with a revised qualification from February 2014. OCR will continue to support and assess this qualification up to the final certification date.
The revised details are as follows:
From 1 February 2014, this qualification will be replaced with a revised version to fulfil the requirements of the new SASE for Higher Apprenticeships.
As Functional Skills will no longer be part of the Apprenticeship Framework, the number of credits for the new NVQ qualification will be increased from 39 to 53, to ensure that the Higher Apprenticeship has a minimum credit value of 90 credits. This will mean that candidates entered for the NVQ from 1 February 2014 will need to complete 33 credits from the optional units (the requirement for the current qualification is 19 credits). The optional units offered in the new qualification will be the same as in the current qualification.
Candidates entered for the NVQ before 31 January 2014 will not be required to take the increased number of credits, but will be required to take Functional Skills as part of the Apprenticeship Framework, as is currently the case.
Updated and new support materials now available
We are pleased to announce that new and updated support materials are available on the Employability web pages of the OCR website at www.ocr.org.uk/qualifications/by-type/vocational-qualifications/preparation-for-work. Please select the relevant qualification to find:
The following points will help centre assessors get the most from the qualification for their candidates:
Funding changes: Please also note that there are recent funding changes for Employability Skills for 19+ learners. This information is available under ‘notices to centres’ on the qualification web pages.
The Department for Education (DfE) creates discount (classification) codes for qualifications which govern how combinations can be used for performance tables. These codes (which are published within our basedata files) ensure that ‘double counting’ in performance tables is avoided.
The DfE has undertaken a review of discount codes in the light of the changes to the policy for 14–16 accountability measures. This has resulted in significant changes to the discount codes for our current specifications for the January 2014 series onwards.
The changes to discount codes for 2014 were not available when the January 2014 basedata files were originally published. However, we have now updated the basedata to include these codes within the following file:
The updated file is available from the OCR website at www.ocr.org.uk/basedata and should be downloaded in the usual way to ensure your management information system is up to date. Please accept our apologies for any inconvenience this causes.
Pre-release material date change from 2014
OCR has decided to move the pre-release date for the Stimulus Material for Unit A593 The UK Economy and Globalisation forward to the beginning of the school year (1st September). This becomes effective from the June 2014 material, which can now be found on the GCSE Economics page of the OCR website.
2013/14 Set A & B live assignments
As an approved centre offering the OCR Bookkeeping & Accounting QCF qualifications, the new live assignments for 2013/14 are now available to download from OCR’s secure website Interchange. The CSV files for the computerised units can also be downloaded from Interchange.
The live assignment materials must be kept secure and confidential within your centre and may only be used for final assessment. The assignments (including answer booklets) should be photocopied for each candidate undertaking assessment and must be assessed under examination conditions.
Please note, the live assignment material for 2013/14 will only be available electronically via Interchange.
The 2013/14 assignments will remain live until 30 September 2015.
The previously released 2012/13 assignments will remain live until 30 September 2014.
The original 2011/12 assignments will be withdrawn as live assessment material on 31 October 2013 and must not be used for candidate assessment after this date. These assignments may be used as practice material from 1 January 2014.
If you have any queries about this notice, please contact our Customer Contact Centre on 02476 851509 or at email@example.com.
Launch of new qualification
The OCR Level 4 Diploma in Professional Competence for IT and Telecoms Professionals (10351) is now accredited and will be launched in December 2013. This work-based qualification forms the competence element of the Level 4 IT, Software, Web & Telecoms Professionals Higher Apprenticeship Framework. The qualification will be verified.
If you wish to apply for approval to offer this Level 4 qualification, please complete the centre approval form, which is available from the OCR website at www.ocr.org.uk/approvals.
Details of the qualification will be on the website shortly. In the meantime, if you have any queries about this notice, please call our Customer Contact Centre on 02476 851509 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Pre-release material date change
OCR has decided to move the pre-release date for the pre-release material for Unit B673 Applying Sociological Research Techniques forward to the beginning of the school year. This becomes effective from the June 2014 material, which is now available on the qualification page.
Due to the removal of the January examination series and in response to customer feedback, OCR has decided to move the pre-release date for the pre-release stimulus material for Unit G671 Exploring Socialisation, Culture and Identity forward to the beginning of the school year. This becomes effective from the June 2014 material, which is now available from the GCE Sociology page of the OCR website.
BBC to remove WebWise e-assessments from 31 December 2013
Centres with candidates taking an OCR Level 1 IT User Skills qualification have been able to use the e-assessments from BBC WebWise towards the overarching qualification.
Unfortunately, the BBC has reviewed their strategy and will not be offering the e-assessment from 31 December 2013. The full details of their decision are available on the BBC website.
OCR is committed to the assessment of candidates for ICT and is working on a solution for centres.
Once confirmed, full details will be provided via Subject Information Updates and e-alerts. You can sign up to be kept up to date with any changes.
Relevant information will also be posted on the qualification page of the OCR website.
Due to the removal of the January examination series and in response to customer feedback, OCR has decided to move the pre-release date for the Stimulus Material for Unit F585 The Global Economy forward to the beginning of the school year (1 September). This becomes effective from the June 2014 material, which can now be found on the A Level Economics page of the OCR website.
Withdrawal of OCR Plant Operations qualifications
OCR Level 2 NVQ Certificate in Plant Operations (10340)
Following a review of our qualification offer in the light of falling market demand and changes to the funding regime, OCR has reluctantly decided to withdraw the Plant Operations qualification listed below. OCR will of course continue to support and assess the qualification up to the final certification date for this qualification which will be as follows:
OCR will not be producing a replacement Plant Operations qualification.
Be aware that the final certification date is the last date in which OCR will produce certificates and therefore it is advised that centres plan for completion of all candidate assessment at least 2 months prior to these dates.
Extension to last entry date
Following a recent customer survey among a selection of centres, we will be reviewing the suite of Administration (Business Professional ) qualifications. Therefore, while we undertake the review, we are intending to extend the last entry date to 31 December 2014.
We will contact you again with more information shortly. In the meantime, if you have any queries about this notice, please call our Customer Contact Centre on 01223 553998 or email: email@example.com and we will be pleased to help.
Following the June 2013 moderation series, we have reviewed the A193 controlled assessment and made some minor changes. These changes will be applicable to the June 2015 and June 2016 series only.
Following the June 2013 moderation series, we have reviewed the B684 controlled assessment and made some minor changes. These changes will be applicable to the June 2015 series only.
Ofqual recently confirmed changes that had to be made to all GCSEs offered by all awarding bodies in England for teaching from September 2012.
The reforms are designed to:
To reflect these changes we have made the necessary changes to our specifications and published these on our website with the annotation ‘(from 2012)’ after the subject eg ‘Computing – J275 (from 2012)’.
All teachers delivering OCR GCSEs should now be using the specifications marked as being for use from 2012.
Specifications with the annotation (from 2009) or (from 2010) are now redundant and so to ensure our website is up to date and easy to use, we will be removing outdated specifications from the OCR website at the end of October 2013.
More information about changes to GCSE qualifications and general qualification reform can be found at www.ocr.org.uk/qualifications/gcse-and-a-level-reform/gcse-reform/
GCE AS Unit F362 (L2) Latin verse and prose literature
From June 2015 to June 2017, the set texts which will be examined are:
Bloomsbury Academic (formerly Duckworth/Bristol Classical Press) is releasing new editions of these texts which will be the prescribed editions. The lines prescribed by OCR are exactly the same as those in the titles of the new editions. The editions will be published in December 2013. Details of the revised editions are as follows:
Cicero: De Imperio: An Extract: 27–45
Commentary notes and vocabulary by Katharine Radice, Introduction by Catherine Steel
Ovid: Metamorphoses III: An Extract: 511–733
Introduction, commentary and notes by John Godwin
Extension of last entry date
Following a recent customer survey among a selection of centres, we will be reviewing the suite of text processing qualifications. Therefore, while we undertake the review, we are intending to extend the last entry date to 31 December 2014.
The academic year 2013/14 sees a small but significant change to the administration of OCR’s vocational examinations in Functional Skills and Cambridge Progression.
Until September 2013, these examinations were carried out under the regulations contained in the JCQ Instructions for conducting examinations.
From September 2013, the JCQ ‘ICE’ document no longer covers Functional Skills. The range of delivery models across awarding bodies was considered too variable to enable a single document to suffice.
As a consequence, and in line with other awarding bodies, OCR has created its own ICE booklet, which for OCR covers both Functional Skills and Cambridge Progression. You can download the document below:
Instructions for conducting OCR Functional Skills and Cambridge Progression qualification examinations 2013/14
There is a list of differences from the JCQ ICE booklet at the beginning of the document.
Key information about conducting B452/B454 assessments in 2013/2014
It is important to visit the OCR website at the beginning of the academic year, as well as regularly throughout the year, in order to access the most up-to-date and relevant materials which support the specification. Any new or updated resources will be added to the specification web pages at:
Important dates for 2013/2014
F214 – Communication, homeostasis and energy
Module 4: Respiration
Oxidative phosphorylation and chemiosmotic theory are learning outcomes of GCE Biology, Unit F214, Module 4.
Chemiosmotic theory, as presented in the examination paper for F214, January 2013, and the OCR endorsed A2 Heinemann textbook, has been the subject of debate by a group of Academics working in the area of bioenergetics. This group of scientists has stated that the outer mitochondrial membrane does not play a role in oxidative phosphorylation and, hence, in ATP synthesis. An account of chemiosmotic theory has kindly been produced by this group, to assist with the teaching and learning of this important topic. These support documents are now available on the OCR website under the GCE Biology support materials:
Centres should be aware that the Principal Examiner for Unit F214 will take this new information into account in future series.
Withdrawal of OCR Awards/Certificates for Young Enterprise
Following a review of our qualification offer in light of changes to the funding regime, OCR has reluctantly decided to withdraw the current Young Enterprise suite of qualifications. However, we remain committed to supporting enterprise education and are currently working with Young Enterprise to consider alternative ways to do this. We will be writing to you again soon with an update.
Details are as follows:
OCR Entry Level Award for Young Enterprise (code 03981)
Final registration date: 31/08/2014
Final certification date: 31/08/2015
Please note that the final certification date is the last date on which OCR will produce certificates and therefore it is advised that centres plan for completion of all candidate assessment at least two months prior to this date for the on-demand Entry Level qualification.
OCR Level 1 Award for Young Enterprise (code 03982)
OCR Level 2 Certificate for Young Enterprise (code 03983)
OCR Level 3 Certificate for Young Enterprise (code 03984)
Final entry date: 11/04/2014
Final exam date: 06/05/2014
For Levels 1-3 it is imperative that all entries are received by the final entry deadline, as we will be unable to accept entries after this date. This will be the last opportunity for examined assessment (May 2014).
Unit G542 - Specification coverage and schemes of assessment
We would like to remind centres that candidates are expected to study all the content for G542 Core Studies within the specification which includes:
Centres are also reminded that candidates should be prepared to answer one question from a choice of two in Section C. Their response should focus not only on approaches – but also on issues and methods that arise from the Core Studies.
For more information please refer to H168 Specification for OCR Advanced Subsidiary GCE in Psychology: Section 4: Schemes of Assessment.
Key information about conducting H154/H554 assessments in 2013/14
New or amended resources are continually added to the specification web pages at http://www.ocr.org.uk/qualifications/as-a-level-gce-physical-education-h154-h554/. It is therefore important to visit the OCR website regularly throughout the academic year to access updated information and materials. The following resources are currently available to download:
All AS candidates must have a minimum of one activity mark submitted by 31 March as per the requirements of the specification.
Candidates being assessed in seasonal activities may still be called to moderation to answer questions on, or demonstrate knowledge of skills associated with, these activities even if final assessment of them by the centre has yet to take place.
DVD/CD-Rom/Memory stick evidence
Please note that USB memory sticks may be used in place of a DVD/CD ROM for providing filmed evidence.
Centres are reminded of the requirement to collate and retain DVD/CD-Rom evidence in respect of units G452 and G454. The Teacher Support: Coursework Guidance Booklets stipulate the following:
Centres should ensure that candidates included in the DVD/CD-Rom evidence can be clearly identified and married easily to candidates detailed within the assessment forms. This can be achieved by the use of numbered bibs together with a commentary or accompanying documentation. The DVD/CD-Rom evidence should relate to the assessment criteria for the activity concerned.
Centres are also advised that any request for Post Results Services in respect of units G452 and/or G454 is subject to a centre being able to provide DVD/CD-Rom evidence of a sample of their candidates from across the range of marks (top, middle and bottom) for each performance activity viewed at moderation. DVD/CD-Rom evidence of a sample of their candidates from across the range of marks (top, middle and bottom) will also be required in respect of coaching, officiating and, for G452, the Evaluation and planning for the improvement of performance (EPIP) and, for G454, the Evaluation, appreciation and the improvement of performance (E & A).
Withdrawal of Short Course
The GCSE History B Modern World Short course J117 is being withdrawn from 31 August 2014. This means that the last assessment will be in June 2014. There will be no resit opportunity in 2015.
Candidates starting the course in September 2013 will need to complete it in one year and take both units in June 2014. Candidates who started in September 2012 (or earlier) will also need to complete the course and take both units in June 2014.
Alternative qualifications available are:
Set texts for examination in June 2015
Section A: Selections from Herodotus
Section XI: Captures of Babylon B, Second Capture, by Darius
The text will be taken from Tales from Herodotus (pages 33-38) eds GS Farnell and M Goff (Duckworth/BCP) ISBN 9780862920913
Candidates will be expected to have read the introduction to Section XI and the accompanying notes.
Section B: Selections from Lucian
Lucian A True Story, Sections 7, 8 and 9, omitting sections 9b (12 lines) and 9c (10 lines)
The text will be taken from Lucian (pages 40-54) ed Keith C. Sidwell (Bristol Classical Press) ISBN 09065 1536X
Candidates will be expected to have read the introduction to Chapter III on page 40 of Sidwell’s BCP edition.
Unit B404 Classical Greek Verse Literature
Section A: Selections from Homer Odyssey XXI
Homer Odyssey XXI, lines 288-423
The text will be taken from: Homer Odyssey XXI
Four Greek Authors ed E C Kennedy (Duckworth/BCP) ISBN 0333063872
Section B: Selections from Euripides Iphigenia in Aulis
Euripides: Iphigenia in Aulis, lines 1-55, 155-201, 280-309
The text will be taken from Euripides: Scenes from Iphigenia in Aulis & Iphigenia in Tauris ed. E C Kennedy (Bristol Classical Press) ISBN 0-906515-97-1
The set texts listed in this notice are for examination in June 2015.
Life and Living Skills 10160-10172, 10181-10183
Changes to centre handbook C213
The new centre handbook can now be downloaded from the OCR website. OCR has clarified its requirements regarding authenticity of individual evidence – see section 3 for further details.
Amendments to recording documents
There is no longer a requirement to complete and submit a separate Learner Unit Transcript for Entry 1 candidates. All Records of Assessment at Entry 1 have been modified to allow centres to indicate on this sheet which stage Entry 1 candidates have reached on the Achievement Continuum.
Minor changes have been made to all Records of Assessment templates to improve their format.
A list of standardisation points has now been issued on the website to clarify areas where centres have had difficulty in assessing units correctly to date. Please refer to these when completing assessment of Life and Living Skills evidence.
UNIT G403/01- Performance contexts 2
Centres are reminded that the current external assessment for unit G403/01 requires candidates to complete two tables, located on page 2 of the examination paper:
From the June 2014 examination series there will no longer be a requirement for candidates to complete these two tables. Whilst candidates are free to incorporate practitioners and extracts in their ‘plan’ examiners will only be marking and applying the assessment criteria to the extended response provided by each candidate.
Centres are assured that the OCR examiner will still be looking for breadth and depth in candidate responses. The only difference moving forward is that rather than having an atomised list at the start of the examination paper examiners will be able to gauge the use of practitioners and relevant extracts throughout the candidates’ written response.
Unit G404/01- Performance project
With the demise of the January examination series and following some email correspondence received from centres OCR has taken the decision to release the commissions for unit G404/01 to candidates earlier in the academic year.
For the 2014 summer examination series centres will be instructed to make the commissions available to candidates from 1 December, 2013. It is hoped this additional time will allow centres to bring more flexibility into their delivery programme for the two A2 units as they balance the need to prepare for the external examination (Unit G403/01) with the demands of the performance-based assessment (Unit G404/01).
Unit A662 – Educating Rita
In the A662 examination question paper we always reproduce an extract from Educating Rita, using the original Longman edition of the play as a basis for writing the questions and selecting the extracts.
While we do not usually prescribe the editions of texts to be studied in our GCSE English Literature specification, we are aware, because Willy Russell has updated Educating Rita, that there are two different versions of the play in print.
To avoid confusion, and to ensure that no candidate is disadvantaged in the examination by variations in the two versions, centres are advised to use the original Longman version of the text when preparing students for the A662 exam – ISBN 0582060133.
Following a review of our qualification offer in the light of falling market demand and changes to the funding regime, OCR has reluctantly decided to withdraw the Business Skills suite of qualifications. OCR will of course continue to support and assess the qualifications up to the final certification date for this qualification which will be as follows:
10186 - OCR Level 1 Award in Business Skills
Final registration date: 31 December 2013
Final certification date: 31 December 2014
10187 - OCR Level 1 Certificate in Business Skills
Final registration date: 31 December 2013
Final certification date: 31 December 2014
10188 - OCR Level 2 Award in Business Skills
Final registration date:31 December 2013
Final certification date: 31 December 2014
10189 - OCR Level 2 Certificate in Business Skills
Final registration date: 31 December 2013
Final certification date: 31 December 2014
10190 - OCR Level 2 Diploma in Business Skills
Final registration date: 31 December 2013
Final certification date: 31 December 2014
10191 - OCR Level 3 Award in Business Skills
Final registration date: 31 December 2013
Final certification date: 30 June 2015
10192 - OCR Level 3 Certificate in Business Skills
Final registration date: 31 December 2013
Final certification date: 30 June 2015
10193 - OCR Level 3 Diploma in Business Skills
Final registraton date: 31 December 2013
Final certification date: 30 June 2015
Please be aware that the final certification date is the last date by which OCR will produce certificates and therefore centres are advised to plan for completion of all candidate assessments at least two months prior to these dates.
Please be aware that the unit specification for the Cambridge Technical in Health and Social Care at Level 3 Unit 19 has, to date, indicated an incorrect credit value. Up until now, it has stated that the unit credit value was 10 credits. This is not correct - the unit credit value for this unit is 5 credits and the unit specification has now been amended accordingly.
Note: all other documentation pertaining to this unit - for example, the progress tracker, rules of combination and centre handbook - has always stated the correct credit value of 5 credits.
Extension of entry dates
We are pleased to announce that the last entry date for the following Management and Team Leading qualifications, that are the knowledge components of the Apprenticeship framework, have been extended to 30 September 2014.
You may continue to enter candidates for these qualifications until that date.
Unit B001 Food & Nutrition short tasks
The new controlled assessment tasks for B001 are now available to download from OCR Interchange. All candidates must follow one of the new set tasks for submission in 2015 onwards.
Unit B001 food & nutrition short tasks and Unit B002 food study
We have produced new URS for the controlled assessment units B001 and B002. These forms will be available shortly to download from the Food & Nutrition webpage under the ‘Forms’ heading.
The new URS contain the marking criteria currently found in the specification. The new URS must be used for submission in June 2014 onwards and replace all previous available forms.
Unit B011 Child Development short tasks
The new controlled assessment tasks for B011 are now available to download from OCR Interchange. All candidates must follow one of the new set tasks for submission in 2015 onwards.
Unit B011 Child Development short tasks and Unit B012 Child Study
We have produced new URS for the controlled assessment units B011 and B012. These forms will be available shortly to download from the Child Development webpage under the ‘Forms’ heading.