2essential desirable possible WJEC website: the tasks and guidance for 2015Opportunity for students to make a decisionControversy / opinion / biasDeveloping ideas ....for the DMEessentialThe starting point for devising a DMEdesirablepossibleExceptional stimulus material availableOpportunity for fieldworkWJEC GCSE Geography tasks change each year. It is essential that you choose one DME from the list of tasks that have been set for the year in which your cohort complete their GCSE and cash in their award i.e. your current year 10 need to be set a task based on one of the 2015 tasks.The slide separates the essential factors (top) from those that are desirable (bottom left) or possible (bottom right). There is no need to base a DME on fieldwork but the moderators have seen some very good examples where this has been the case.Your students must be given the opportunity to make and justify a decision. The moderators still see too many tasks that are descriptive reports where candidates have been unable to access higher levels of the mark scheme because of poor design of the task.The recognition of bias has always been a key element of the DME at level 4. The mark scheme has changed and the recognition of bias is now credited at level 3. It is very important that you consider how to incorporate viewpoints into the task whilst allowing the candidates the opportunity to analyse and explain these views.Specific staff expertiseLinks with a planning office / stakeholder
3Generic tasks for the Decision Making Exercise in 2015 ThemeGeneric tasks for the Decision Making Exercise in 20152A report analysing how changes to transport might help to combat climate change, which includes the candidate’s reasoned and justified decision.3A report analysing how successful hazard reduction strategies may be in volcanic zones, which includes …4A report analysing how successful strategies may be that attempt to reduce migration from rural regions of Europe, which includes …7A report analysing how coastal management may need to change in the future in the face of rising sea levels and coastal flooding, which includes …8A report analysing the best ways for a European country to prepare for extreme weather associated with high pressure which includes …9A report analysing the best ways to manage a tropical reef sustainably, which includes …10A report analysing the extent to which rural tourism can be developed sustainably which includes …12A report analysing conflicting opinions about the use of tidal power, which includes …These are the generic tasks for It is essential that you choose one DME from this list of tasks for your current year 10. Teacher guidance notes for each task are available on the WJEC website.It is essential that you do not repeat the same task in consecutive years but you may use the same theme:Eg In 2014 the theme 10 task was on mass tourism (eg Benidorm, Cancun, St Lucia) whereas in 2015 you may do a tourism DME but the emphasis has changed significantly to rural tourism (Snowdonia, agr-tourism in Italy).Tasks must change each year as a regulatory requirement and affects all awarding bodies.
4Developing ideas .... for the DME A checklist for the DME Will candidates have the opportunity to make a decision?Can a range of specific viewpoints / bias be identified?Developing ideas ....for the DMEIs controversy at the heart of the DME?Is the issue topical / current – is there a futures element?Will the task arise naturally out of the teaching programme?Can the task be completed within the hours allowed?Will the resources available be accessible to all students?This checklist could be used when assessing the suitability of a proposed DME before sending it to WJEC for approval. The top two points are essential but are missed by an alarming number of centres.
5Preparing for the DMEWhat are the key concepts? What other context can I use?Long term planning about Teaching and learningDo students have data processing skills?Have I taught students how to make a decision?What resources are available to populate the folder?The DME is a summative assessment. Moderators suspect that some centres introduce the concept of decision making to their candidates for the first time at the point of assessment. If candidates are familiar with the process of making a decision and supporting it with a persuasive argument then the need for any complex writing frame for the assessment should be removed – however, moderators still see some examples of over-structured writing frames and scaffolds.The teaching and learning that support this task needs to take place in the weeks or months prior to the controlled assessment. Decision making / considering viewpoints are skills that should be part of the key stage 3 scheme of work.Planning for the controlled assessment should be done well in advance when the two year GCSE scheme of work is prepared. Tasks are published on the WJEC website in June a full two years before the award so centres can choose appropriate tasks before the Autumn term of year 10 begins. Practical arrangements for the two tasks, such as booking of the ICT suite or arranging fieldwork can take place early in the two year cycle. Ideally, students should be given some opportunity to research the task themselves from websites that you have selected. However, if this is not possible, teachers will have to provide sufficient research materials (that include both facts and opinions) to their candidates in a research folder.Other planning can and should begin earlier. Remember that controlled assessment is a form of summative assessment so you should not be using the task to teach new skills. Candidates should begin the task with prior experience of data handling, analysis of bias and decision making skills.Do I need to book the ICT room / library?Short term planning about logisticsAm I going to use separate lessons, or block book time?
6Dos and Don’ts – based on the short guidance provided with the tasks for 2015 Do choose a contentious issue where stakeholders have different opinions and vested interests.Provide opportunities for students to explain opinions and challenge bias.If stakeholder views are included in the resources provided to support the task then you should ensure that these views are presented without any comment / explanation or analysis of your own. It is the candidates job to do this!Do not close down the ability of candidates to research additional perspectives / viewpoints e.g. through use of the internet or, where possible, through interviews or the use of visiting speakers such as a local planner or councillor.
7Critically assess opinions What emotive language is used?Who has contributed? Why are they anonymous?opinionopinionIdentifying fact and opinion is one simple step. The annotation of a web article would be a good way for candidates to provide evidence.factWhat geographical concepts are examined?
8Do teach the concepts, theories and models that underpin your DME before your candidates begin to research the issue you have chosen so they can apply their knowledge to this new, unfamiliar context.Do not teach the concepts that underpin your DME using the context of the place that your candidates will be researching during the task. For example, if you are going to conduct a DME into coastal management in Prestatyn, use Borth or another coastline to teach the concepts first.
9Do provide candidates with the opportunity to make a decision Do provide candidates with the opportunity to make a decision. There are three effective ways to do this:1. Ask candidates to choose the best location (from three) for a new development eg the best site (from three or more) for a tidal barrage.Do not encourage candidates to write a descriptive report or essay.The candidates must demonstrate decision making skills.Choosing the best site (from three or more) is a decision making strategy that could be applied to several of the 2015 tasks:Theme 2: choosing the best route for a cycle path or tram route.Theme 8: choosing the best site for a new reservoir.Theme 10: choosing the best location for a new visitors’ centre.
102. Ask candidates to choose the best option (from three or more options) to create a sustainable solution eg for a tropical rainforest DME in Borneo, ask candidates to analyse the advantages and disadvantages of palm oil plantations, selected logging and eco-tourism.Choosing the best option (from three or more different strategies) is a decision making strategy that could be applied to several of the 2015 tasks. You will need to provide all the candidates with some basic information about each of the options. Their task should be to analyse the options you have provided. In some cases, it may be possible for candidates to do additional research into each option. However, you should not start the task by giving your students a blank canvass – this would be too demanding.
11Banning fishing on sections of the reef that have suffered overfishing CORAL REEF DMEAllowing one area to become sacrificed to visitor pressure eg the reef at CancunBanning visitors from damaged sections of the reef to allow times for recoveryRestricting the number of divers to some fragile sites, perhaps by increasing the cost of access to the reefConservation and restoration of the ecosystem. This includes careful monitoring of the effects of pollution and diving on the corals.Educating divers and tourists to be more sensitive to the needs of the environmentOffering alternative employment to fishermen, eg as visitor guidesSpreading visitors over a wider area so that their impact on each section of reef is minimizedSome problems can be resolved by combining a number of solutions. One example would be the sustainable use of coral reefs where a large number of different solutions are available. Your candidates can rank or prioritise these solutions. They can use the diamond-nine technique to sort and prioritise their chosen solutions.Making rainforest sites, such as Bermudian Landing, much more accessible to tourists
123. Ask candidates to make a yes/no decision based on evidence presented by three or more different groups who have a vested interest eg. for a renewable energy DME ask candidates to decide if a new wind farm should be built in mid Wales.Yes/no decisions could be seen to be more straightforward than either of the previous decision making scenarios but will candidates have enough to analyse? It is more important than ever, if adopting this approach, that candidates are able to anlayse the vested interests of stakeholder groups..
13Do encourage candidates to consider the sustainability of their chosen option. What are likely to be the longer term effects of their decision on people, the economy and the environment?In the short term …In the long term …Group A will benefit because …The environment will be damaged by …Option A causes less social problems than option B because …Candidates need to explain why some solutions are more sustainable than others. Too many candidates state that their chosen option is sustainable without ever trying to justify their decision. Use writing frames like these in key stage 3 to support your students to develop this skill.Do not over-structure the report for your candidates by giving them a detailed scaffold, writing frame or check list.You may decide to give a writing frame or scaffold to the lowest achieving candidates, but if you do so, you must take this into account when marking the completed report. These additional support materials, used only for nominated candidates, must be sent to the Moderator (as required by the sampling procedure).
14Natural Economic Who decides? Social Teach methods of decision making How will the environment be affected?NaturalEconomicWho decides?Will jobs be created or lost?Will local people benefit?What kinds of skills?Who are making decisions about change – raising questions about the involvement of local communities or the imposition of decisions from above.SocialThe compass rose promotes systematic geographical analysis of an issue. It is promoted by TIDE (Teachers in Development Education).How will people be affected?Will the local community benefit?
15Justifying a decision may require support but writing frames must not be used. Support students by practicing the skill during normal teaching and learning.Basic structureThis section could include:What is the problem?Is there any evidence (consider the raw data on visitor numbers) of mass tourism in St Lucia? What attracts the tourists? What problems are caused by mass tourism?What are the options?What are the advantages and disadvantages of each option?How might each option affect people / environment?What consequences might each option have in the short / long term? What do people think (consider bias) about the option? Who are the stakeholders?What is my decision?Which is the best option? Can the options be prioritised? How would my decision affect stakeholders?Why is this option better than the others?Why is my decision better for people / environment? Is my decision more sustainable? Is my decision based on firm / valid evidence?You may provide your candidates with a basic structure for their report (which you may contextualise from the generic framework on page 39 of the specification) so that they can structure their report. However, do not over structure the report otherwise candidates will not be able to demonstrate any independence.I suggest that you give everyone a basic structure (as in column one in this slide which could be used for a report on mass tourism in St Lucia – one of the 2014 tasks) and then provide opportunities for discussion on how this might be developed during low level control. Be careful not to guide the discussion or to write notes on the whiteboard to summarise the discussion – but allow candidates to jot down their own notes independently .
16To conclude: what are the key issues? Do candidates have the opportunity to make a decision:AnalyseChoose / prioritiseJustifyDo students have the opportunity to consider bias and / or opinion of stakeholders?Have you provided data in the resource pack so that candidates demonstrate processing / presentational skills?