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Curriculum for Excellence: the structure and design of new National Qualifications in Scotland Charlie O’Donnell CfE Liaison Manager

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Presentation on theme: "Curriculum for Excellence: the structure and design of new National Qualifications in Scotland Charlie O’Donnell CfE Liaison Manager"— Presentation transcript:

1 Curriculum for Excellence: the structure and design of new National Qualifications in Scotland Charlie O’Donnell CfE Liaison Manager charles.o’

2 Current QualificationsNew Qualifications Replaced by (Revised) National 1 National 2 National 3

3 National 4 – Advanced Higher – Added Value/Course Assessment  Is what makes the Course more than the sum of its parts - AV at N4 = Unit AV at N5/H/AH = Course Assessment  Method of assessment is prescribed by SQA for Added Value/Course Assessment  Method of assessment is not prescribed for Mandatory Units – flexibility to choose assessment method

4 Assessment methods Added value will be assessed using seven broad methods:  Assignments: structured problem-solving exercise with clear guidelines  Case studies: stimulus-based assessment of learner’s ability to analyse and draw conclusions  Practical activities: direct application of learner’s skills to making or building something  Performances: practical demonstration of learner’s skills  Portfolios: collection of learner’s work assembled over the period of learning  Projects: open-ended task with support appropriate to the SCQF level requiring investigative/research skills  Question papers/tests: examination of knowledge and understanding via written responses

5 Skills for Learning, Skills for Life, Skills for Work  Greater focus on skills development - –Literacy –Numeracy –Skills for health and well-being –Employability, enterprise and citizenship –Thinking skills

6 Core Skills Our Core Skills Profile will remain for existing qualifications and contributions to profile will be considered from –A number of new NQs –Literacy and Numeracy Units –All Awards –New Skills for Work Courses in Travel and Tourism

7 Guidance and Exemplification  Course and Unit Support Notes: guidance on delivering Courses and the Units, approaches to learning and teaching is available now for National 2 – Higher  Assessment Support materials: SQA quality assured assessment will be available on the National Assessment Resource by April 2013 for National 1 to National 5, April 2014 for Higher and April 2015 for Advanced Higher

8 Assessment Overviews  Published June 2012  Published for every subject at Nat 2 – 5  Outlines what support materials will be produced and when eg: –Maths Unit by Unit, Oct 2012, Portfolio Feb 2013 and March 2013 –Chemistry Unit by Unit, Oct 2012, Feb 2013, Portfolio March 2013 –Art and Design, Unit by Unit, Oct 2012, Feb 2013, Combined, Apr 2013

9 Assessment Overviews contd  Provides further information on course assessment requirements eg: –English AV Unit extended piece of writing, 700-800 words or 5 minute talk to at least 3 people –Maths AV Unit. Part 1 of the test, 5 questions in 20 mins, part 2 eight questions in 40 mins.  Assessment overviews can be found on the CfE Subject pages

10 Support and Engagement  Further curricular events planned in September 2012  Subject specific events from October 2012  Assessment support materials on NAR  Videos of master classes and seminars that have taken place are also available from subject specific pages under Events.  For detail on the subjects covered by Education Scotland (advice and support), visit

11 Assessment Support Packages SQA will develop the following quality assured assessment materials from May 2012 through to April 2013:  A package of assessment support covering the Units for each Course at National 2, National 3, National 4 (Inc. AV) and National 5.  Specimen question papers and Course work for National 5 Courses. In addition, further information will be available to support AV/Course assessment at National 4 and National 5.

12 Assessment Support Schedule 2012/13 Sep 12 Curriculum Area Events Oct 12 N2 to N5 Unit Assessment Support (package 1) Oct 12 to Mar 13 Subject Specific Events Feb 13 N2 to N5 Unit Assessment Support (package 2) Feb 13 Publish N5 Specimen Question Paper Apr 13 N2 to N5 Unit Assessment Support (package 3) Apr 13 Publish N5 Specimen Coursework Apr 13 N4 Added Value Assessment Support

13 CfE Qualifications Timeline  Session 2012/13 –last diet of Standard Grade examinations –develop Assessment Support (N2 – N5) –Publish Draft and final Advanced Higher documents  Session 2013/14 –first diet of new CfE Qualifications (N1 to N5), dual run with existing Access and Intermediates –develop Assessment Support (Higher)  Session 2014/15 –first diet of new Higher, dual run with existing Access, Intermediates and Highers –develop Assessment Support (Advanced Higher)  Session 2015/16 –first diet of Advanced Higher

14 Quality Assurance  Principal Verifier – Appointed by SQA with lead responsibility for ensuring national standards are being applied and maintained  QA Panel members (Nominees) - Centre/Local Authority/College nominated subject experts: dual role within their centres and the QA Panel events. Only those actively verifying work will sit on the Panel  Team Leaders – Centre/Local Authority/College nominated appointees who receive additional training to work in this role, with centre agreement  Verification will take place across levels from National 1 to Advanced Higher  Both Units and Internally Assessed Course Components will be verified  Intense verification in early years – centres will be verified in all broad subject areas being delivered  Intelligence led approach implemented in later years  Unit Verification will take place in Oct/Nov, March and May – allows for earlier identification of issues and support/guidance to be provided  Internally Assessed Course Components will be verified in May as evidence must cover entire Course

15 New National Qualifications 27 September 2012 Margaret Miller Scottish Qualifications Authority

16 Design Principles for National Courses 6National Courses should take into consideration the needs of all learners, and should be designed to be as accessible as possible to learners who will achieve in different ways and at a different pace. 13Assessment methodologies for National Courses……. … should promote best practice and enable learners to achieve the highest standards they are capable of. They should support greater breadth and depth of learning and a greater focus on skills development. 14……Assessment has to be fair and inclusive, and must allow learners to show what they have achieved.

17 SQA’s Aspirations Support economic and social development Support social justice agenda Help raise attainment for all Address issues of gender and social class inequality Address issues of inclusion Cater for learners across the full ability range Widen curriculum and certification Enhancing positive and sustained destinations

18 National Courses  Build on the Broad General Education (S1 – S3)  Progression from Experiences and Outcomes National 2 and National 3 Courses ♦Based on Units – internally assessed; must achieve the Units to gain the Course; Courses ungraded National 4 Courses ♦Based on Units – internally assessed; includes an Added Value Unit; must achieve the Units to gain the Course; National 4 Courses are ungraded National 5, Higher and Advanced Higher Courses  Based on Units and Course assessment – Units internally assessed  Course assessment may be a Question Paper and Coursework  Course assessment normally marked by SQA  Courses graded A-D

19 Hierarchies and recognition of achievement  Most Courses are hierarchical ie, similar structure at adjacent SCQF levels  Applies to many Units also  Enables bi-level teaching  Provides flexibility for learners to move up or drop down a level  Enables recognition for best achievement

20 Units - assessment ♦Flexible and open assessment standards and evidence requirements ♦Likely to be more skills based (subject skills and skills for learning, life and work) ♦Fewer and broader outcomes and more generic assessment criteria ♦Greater range and variety of assessment methods ♦Method of Unit assessment for teachers to decide - not prescribed in Unit Specification ♦Teachers may vary assessment approaches for different learners to suit individual needs ♦Unit assessment - no need to check the use of different assessment methods with SQA - professional judgement may be used

21 Units - assessment  Assessments can be designed to provide evidence across more than one Outcome or Unit  Teachers may create their own Unit assessments  Assessment support for Units being provided  Units will not be graded and will be assessed by teachers on a pass/fail basis  Secure electronic website will provide teachers with: –exemplification of assessment and support –opportunities to develop and share assessments

22 New qualifications – key documents Mandatory documents (website)  Course and Unit Specifications – high level, open and flexible description of standards, aims and purposes  Course Assessment Specifications – more detailed blue print for ensuring year on year consistency in work of centres and examination teams Guidance and support  Course and Unit Support Notes – approaches to learning, teaching and assessment, and developing skills for learning, life and work (website)  Assessment Overviews (website)  Assessment support – specimen Question Papers, specimen coursework and live assessment support for Units, including Added Value Unit

23 Course Support Notes Unit Support Notes  Each Course will have Course Support Notes  Each Unit will have Unit Support Notes  These provide advice and guidance on the delivery and assessment of Courses and Units – not mandatory  Approaches to learning and teaching  Approaches to assessment  Approaches to building in Equality and Inclusion – woven through documents  Approaches to developing skills for learning, life and work

24 Key documents – package of mandatory information and support Overall “package” of information  Course specification + Course Support Notes for each Course  Unit Specification + Unit Support Notes for each Unit  Course Assessment Specification (Nat 5, Higher and Adv Higher)  Added Value Unit (Nat 4 Courses)  Assessment Overview  Assessment Support –Specimen question papers (Nat 5, Higher and Adv Higher) –Specimen coursework (Nat 5, Higher, Adv Higher) –Live Unit Assessment Support (for each Unit + Added Value Units) Teachers/lecturers need to be familiar with all of above

25 Other SQA qualifications that meet CfE values and principles  National Units –Free-standing Units; Units in Courses –Core Skills Units –Literacy and Numeracy Units  Awards  Skills for Work Courses (SCQF levels 3-6) –Vocational: world of work; focus on employability skills;14-16 age group; from S3 onwards –Unit-based Courses; normally school/college partnership

26 Literacy and numeracy  Units at SCQF levels 3, 4 and 5 (available to adult learners also)  Literacy Unit included in National 3 and National 4 English/Gaidhlig Courses  Numeracy Unit included in: –National 3, National 4 and National 5 Lifeskills Mathematics Courses –National 4 Mathematics Course  Some, not all, literacy/numeracy skills included in English and Mathematics (National 5)

27 Awards  Flexible, Unit-based qualifications  Internally assessed; quality assured by SQA  Can be delivered as a block or spread over longer periods of time to suit learners  Certificated throughout the year  Can do from S3 onwards  Available from August 2012  Available for: –Personal Achievement Award (Nat 1 and 2) –Personal Development Award (SCQF levels 2-6) –Wellbeing Award (SCQF levels 3-5) –Religion, Belief and Values (SCQF levels 3-6) –Languages for Life and Work (SCQF levels 3 &4)

28 Equality and Inclusion – accessibility of National Courses Equality Act 2010  SQA’s National Qualifications must not be unlawfully discriminatory  SQA must make reasonable adjustments for disabled candidates  The Act uses the term “protected characteristics” –Disability, Race, Sex, Sexual Orientation, Gender Reassignment, Religion or Belief, Age

29 Equality and Inclusion – accessibility of National Courses Recognised needs for accessing external Course assessment Autistic Spectrum ConditionPhysical Health Problems BlindPhysical or Motor Impairment DeafSocial Emotional Behavioural Difficulty Deaf BlindOther Specific Learning Difficulty DyslexiaOther Moderate Learning Difficulty Hearing Impairment Learning Disability Language or Speech Disorder Mental Health Problems  Special arrangements

30 Operational Issues  Accessing information – secure website  Registering and resulting learners  Patterns of delivery – transition and continuity  Quality assurance

31 Useful Links  How to keep up to date – – – – – – – –

32 SQA Website demonstration


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