Which GCSEs and A-levels comprise of exams only, with no coursework or practical elements? (AQA, CCEA, EDEXCEL)
Many thanks for your help!
For GCSE the only one I can think of is Maths. But for a level Maths and the three sciences had no coursework that contributes to the final grade. Neither does economics, politics, business or computer science.
the gcses i took that were 100% exam were maths (edexcel), re (edexcel), and psychology (ocr) however i know that aqa also offers a gcse psychology course that i think is also 100% exam. before i dropped it i know that additional maths was also 100% exam but i dont remember that exam board it was under.
i also looked through the prospectus of the college im going to and picked out a levels under those exam boards that are 100% exam for you:
business studies (aqa)
classical civilisation (aqa)
computer science under aqa is 100% exam at AS but is only 80% exam at a level.
i hope this helped!
Summer has arrived, and fifteen to sixteen year-olds all over the UK are celebrating the end of the dreaded GCSE year. Having recently completed my exams, I look back and all I can remember is stress and panic.
But at my school, we did not do regular GCSEs. IGCSEs were compulsory, and I was always less than confident I would reach the high standards they demanded. Now that I look back, I can't help but wonder if I would have been better off taking the normal GCSEs.
IGCSEs (International General Certificate of Secondary Education) were devised by Cambridge University to give students a step up to their A-level curriculum, by being more demanding. Unlike GCSEs, IGCSEs are not organised in modules. There is only one exam at the end of the entire course and there is no coursework.
The new education secretary, Michael Gove, has said that, from September, state schools will have the option of taking IGCSEs. So all those who excel at science subjectswill have a chance to take science IGCSEs. However, many private schools do not give students the choice to take the normal GCSE. It seems to me, whatever school you might attend, you should have the choice.
I have never been good at science. My reports trumpeted my successes in English and the arts, but my science comments were always the same: "tries hard" and "Emily sets high standards for herself and is working hard to fulfil them". It was the teachers' way of saying science was clearly not for me.
At the end of year nine, my year group was divided into four for science: from division 1 (for those who almost did not need a teacher and would take the prestigious Triple Award IGCSE) to division 4. I was in division 3, with two of my closest friends. Even at that level, we soon discovered just how difficult science could be. Chemistry was a foreign language to me, as dull as it was confusing. Whenever anyone said the word "hydrochloric", my brain would switch off. And let's just say that word was said a lot.
IGCSE simply did not suit me. It was incredibly detailed, and meant for those with a huge capacity for learning names, theories and diagrams off by heart. Whereas, when I look at GCSE higher science past papers, the questions make perfect sense to me. Most are multiple choice, and they ask questions that are relevant to everyday life. The subject matter is still challenging, but the multiple choice gives students so much more chance of achieving marks.
The IGCSE is perfect for the science geniuses out there – our future doctors, technicians, dentists. But what I would find more useful is the application of science in everyday life. For example, if I was to invest in a garden arch, I would have no idea what it should be made of. If I bought a spoon, which would be more sustainable, one made out of plastic, metal or wood? Having completed my IGCSEs, I can honestly say I have no idea, but it is topics like these that GCSE covers, along with: How would one make PVC stiffer? How long ago was the solar system formed? How does the sun generate its energy? I for one would feel extremely clever to know the answers to these. They are so much more relevant to me than knowing exactly how I digest my food. Digestion happens to me with or without my knowledge of its exact science, but if I set off to buy that garden arch, it would clearly end in a domestic disaster.
I think it is underestimated just how much presentation can help comprehension. The way GCSEs are laid out immediately calm me. Large images jump out at me, making me think that science is accessible and out there all the time, uniting the world in its complexity. The multiple choice gives me confidence. Instead of finding myself gazing down at a diagram of the heart agonizing over the names of its component parts, I would have been thinking on my feet.The two friends in my division, when it came down to the exams, seemed to give up. I kept working, determined not to be an underdog. But we all found the IGCSE impossible to keep up with, simply because we were fated not to be good at science.
I believe that if we had taken GCSEs, we would all have done well. And there would have been things in the examinations that we would find relevant in the future.
With the IGCSEs, we all knew that as soon as our exams were done, science was over forever. So what was the point?