John Hibbert - Subject Advisor for Film and Media Studies
In the past weeks, we’ve been running online Q&A events to give you a chance to ask subject-specific questions about this year’s grading process. This followed our roundtable video, which gives suggestions on how to use support materials and answers many general grading questions. In this blog, I’ll summarise the most common questions asked at our Media and Film Q&A event.
November 2020 wasn’t a typical series. The last ‘regular’ exam series was 2019. Use the grade boundaries as a guide, but do remember it is a holistic approach to the evidence for the student. There’s no requirement to use the additional assessment materials and turn the result into a grade. The mark might be enough when compared to grade descriptors and exemplification.
The evidence doesn’t need to cover every aspect of the specification. The aim is to include evidence that shows the student’s ability across the range of content taught and, where possible, all assessment objectives.
You can do. If you are using different evidence for a student, you would need to provide an explanation. The worked examples from JCQ (Joint Council for Qualifications) are helpful when considering differences in student evidence. If you have enough holistic evidence to provide a grade, then you can justify leaving the missed assessment out. If not, you would need a rationale to explain the replacement (which could just be ‘they were absent’). It would be useful in this case if the replacement was similar as this would provide greater confidence in the result you are providing.
Yes, incomplete NEA can be used if you wish to do so. JCQ have produced some guidance on assessing incomplete NEA. If the NEA work is incomplete it may still allow Media Studies students to demonstrate their knowledge and understanding of the media theoretical framework, and Film Studies students to show understanding of film form.
If your students have produced prototypes for their NEA we have provided guidance and exemplars to support marking for GCSE Media Studies, A Level Media Studies and A Level Film Studies. You can find these in the planning and teaching section of the qualification pages on our website.
You can choose to use the NEA, whether partially or fully completed, as one source of evidence but there is no requirement for you to do so. If NEA is used, it does not need to be given the same weighting as it has in a standard year. The weight you give any piece of evidence, including any NEA, will depend on the quality of that piece of evidence and how representative it is of students’ attainment.
Yes, there should be, but it really doesn’t need to be extensive in most cases. As evidence should be consistent across a class or cohort, what many centres are doing (which seems a sensible approach) is making a record at class or cohort level of the evidence they have used and why, and then for each student just confirming that they have used that evidence.
If they have moved away from consistency (for example, because someone was ill for a mock) they have noted that for the student in question. They would also note if they had needed to take into account a failure to provide access arrangements, or special consideration, or anything like that. Finally, if the student was in any way borderline, they could explain why they went for one grade and not another.
So in some cases you will have very little to write because the student had the same evidence as everyone else, there were no circumstances to take into account and nothing much to say on the grading determination as it was very straightforward. In others cases there will be more detail. It is completely up to centres how they want to record the information about the grading determination, but JCQ has produced templates that may be helpful.
If you have further questions about this summer’s grading process, you can email us at email@example.com, call us on 01223 553998 or tweet us @OCR_Media_Film. You can also sign up to subject updates and receive information about resources and support.
All advice and guidance provided by Awarding Bodies regarding arrangements for summer 2021 undergoes ratification by the JCQ (Joint Council for Qualifications). This is to ensure that Awarding Bodies provide consistent information to centres. The content of the above blog is currently being reviewed by the JCQ and is therefore potentially subject to some change in wording.
John Hibbert has worked at OCR since April 2018 as Subject Advisor for Media and Film Studies. Prior to joining OCR John taught a range of media and film studies qualifications in secondary schools and was a head of department for the last eight years. Predictably, in his spare time he is a keen filmgoer, and in addition enjoys reading and miserable indie music.