Karl Goodere-Dale, Design and Technology Subject Advisor
Here at OCR we’ve had lots of queries from centres in recent weeks about marking coursework, or non-exam assessment (NEA) for Design and Technology.
There have been questions about how to apply the mark scheme. This isn’t surprising as it hasn’t been assessed for two years, so a larger number of teachers than normal will be submitting marks for moderation for the first time. We’ve also had questions about administrative requirements, and most particularly about whether any allowances should be made when marking for the abnormal and difficult circumstances many students have had to contend with while completing their assignments.
Regarding that last point, the JCQ (Joint Council for Qualifications) has recently released guidance, which makes it clear that all NEA must be marked in the same way as before the pandemic disruption. This is really important, as it will help ensure that all students’ work is marked to the same standards.
As the JCQ guidance also says, the 2022 grading process that takes place after marking, when the grade boundaries are set, will provide a safety net. So please don’t think that by marking your students’ work to pre-pandemic standards this year, you are in any way doing them an injustice. (For more on 2022 grading, please see this Ofqual article from September last year.)
In the light of that recent JCQ announcement, and the queries we’ve had from you, we thought it would be helpful to provide a quick summary of the support available to ensure that you are marking to the correct standard.
There are several resources that will help you have confidence in your application of the mark scheme for Design and Technology:
General information on NEA administration is available on our website.
For Design and Technology specifically, there are a couple of points to remember:
We hope that you and your students are looking forward to the return of making a prototype. I know this brings with it more student excitement, engagement and for teachers a little more focus. However, each year we’re really impressed to see the range and diversity in the outcomes submitted for Design and Technology.
Remember, there is various support available for students when they come to think about their assignments:
If you have any questions, you can email us at email@example.com , call us on 01223 553998 or tweet us @OCR_DesignTech. You can also sign up to subject updates and receive email information about resources and support.
Before joining OCR in September 2019, Karl taught creative subjects in both art and design technology for 12 years. With experience with a variety of roles in secondary schools, including as a head of department, he has a wealth of knowledge and experience in teaching creative subjects at GCSE, A Level and BTEC. He has also previously worked as one of our examiners.