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cassiopee:Has anyone got some concerns about AQA marking of the new GCSE French? Our results were the worst ever and totally out of line with our predictions and the kids were on average 2 grades down just on the writing. We are asking for a complete remark and will probably complain formally as a centre. I would like to know if we are just a one off or if there is a trend across the country with AQA. Thanks for your comments
It seems from earlier postings that many others share your concern about the marking of the new GCSE. I was very unhappy with the specimen paper and the new Higher Listening paper, but did nothing about it. The marking of the writing paper in particular, is just the last straw. I shall follow your example and make a formal complaint to AQA as well as asking for a remark.
I completely echo what you're saying, not just for French but for Spanish and German. All my students were 1 or 2 grades below those predicted and generally their MFL result was a grade or 2 lower than all their other GCSEs.
This concerns me greatly as we are losing what were enthusiastic linguists from AS courses as they don't feel a sense of success in comparison with other subjects. AQA are certainly doing their level best to further denude this country of linguists. I don't know whether a switch to another board would ease the pain or whether the picture is the same everywhere. By the way, I did ring AQA to complain about the Higher Listening (Spanish). Great difference that made! I will persist though and follow suit by requesting a full remark in all 3 languages and I will lodge a formal complaint.
I would also like to complain to AQA - how do we go about it?
We had a very small cohort, but 10 out of 26 of our speaking marks were changed for the worse... We are a very experienced faculty and moderated them all internally. We haven't had any feedback yet so have no idea what we were doing wrong! What's the point in us marking them if the board are going to change the marks anyway?
Also in our written CAs, we had a native speaker, who we thought was an A*, get a B. Another pupil received an X, no points whatsoever, although we thought he was probably an E. Did they lose his work?
We're going to appeal / ask for re-marks etc, but it costs so much and I resent having to pay for it from my faculty budget when it appears that it's actually AQA's incompetence and failure to produce clear and consistent guidelines that has caused the issues.
I am in completely the same boat for Spanish. Students were on average 2 gradebelow what I expected! With a native speaking who should have an A* getting a B!!! I want to get a complete remark and complain, can anyone give me any advice on how to do this? This is only my second year as Head of Spanish, so any advice would be much appreciated! So shocked by their marking of the writings!!!
I totally agree with you regarding Spanish - our writing marks were totally out - only 1 student out of the whole cohort was awarded an A*! I am absolutely shocked by the exam boards marking - we had students using the subjunctive and every other tense possible, writing 3 sides of perfect Spanish and only getting B grades! I will be asking for a remark and complaining as well.
Your best bet is to speak to your exams officer about what action you can take and also call up AQA to see if what they have to say - I'm sure if a lot of people complain, they will have to do something....
Comparing the overall results from 2010 to 2011 there is very little difference. Our deputy head has suggested it may be a local problem - I am in the north west and know of at least 2 other schools, who, like us, are very shocked at the languages results especially the French. For us it is the writing results that are impossibly low. Is anyone else from this area? Or are the scripts sent out for marking nationwide? Another point is that if 12% less pupils are taking French then overall results should be up, given that it is probably those who are better at French that have kept it up, but this is not the case.
My French speaking results were completely upheld. The writing, though, was a lot lower than when I 'marked' them.
However, the Spanish speaking marks were a lot lower than we entered - all pupils lost up to 5 marks on EACH speaking task. Not happy!!
Our French GCSE writing marks were way lower than we'd expected - we had a particularly talented group this year and a lot of them (we thought) were on A/A* for writing and speaking, but only one piece of writing was given an A by the exam board. What on earth do they need to do to get an A?! This group's writing was better than a lot of my AS students, their grammar was spot on and they were using really advanced structures so I don't know what on earth they could have done to improve it! I'm seriously concerned about the effect this is going to have on uptake at A level, since most of the people who were predicted A/A* have come out with Cs or low Bs. I'm also really worried about future year groups who aren't nearly as good at languages as the group that have just gone through - especially combined with us now having a much larger cohort of kids who've been told they have to do languages to GCSE even if they don't want to and aren't very good at it!
Yes - sounds like we have had exactly the same experience with French GCSE writing controlled course work. I have been trying to puzzle out what went on for a few days now.
I am going to be getting AQA to remark our French course work and I'm really disappointed on behalf of the students. I had a similar problem with A level speaking for Spanish 2 years ago. We paid for a remark and they moved all of the students grades up by one grade, so it was really worth doing. I would encourage any HoD in the same situation to do that. I know it will probably have to come from your department capitation, but if it turns out that the exam board made a mistake they will refund your money.
One girl who we thought had written grade B level course work was given an E. It is really bizarre. Although I am relieved to read the other posts on this page and to see that other people have had the same experience and not just our school.
I really hope that this all gets resolved and that students get the grades they deserve.
Thanks for putting that post up whover started this discussion.
BackaComparing the overall results from 2010 to 2011 there is very little difference. Our deputy head has suggested it may be a local problem - I am in the north west and know of at least 2 other schools, who, like us, are very shocked at the languages results especially the French. For us it is the writing results that are impossibly low. Is anyone else from this area? Or are the scripts sent out for marking nationwide? Another point is that if 12% less pupils are taking French then overall results should be up, given that it is probably those who are better at French that have kept it up, but this is not the case.
I'm in the South West and our marks are all at least a grade lower than expected. My class all had at least a C for Speaking and Writing combined, by my reckoning, and most ended up with a D. Other classes have had lower than expected results. I haven't seen the breakdown of marks but assume that parts have been marked down. I feel much better seeing your comments and will investigate. Kate
Has anyone else had the same experience with Edexcel GCSE French controlled assessments for writing? Our marks are down by one or two grades on our assessment affecting the overall grade too.
I too suspect the use of inexperienced native speakers as examiners struggling to interpret the vague and unhelpful mark schemes dreamed up by the boards.
I wish everyone the best of luck trying to get AQA to change marks. My experience of them at A level is not good.
I have spent an hour or so this morning making comparisons between the grade bondaries for June 2010, Jan 2011 & June 2011. Makes interesting reading (and makes me rather cross)
Will certainly be refering to it when I have to do my results analysis
Grade boundaries? Don't even get me started on that one! In which other subject does the boundary for A* go up by 25% from one year to the next? Three guesses......
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