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messed up controlled assessment

(12 Posts)
examstress Fri 22-Jul-11 21:39:46

DD messed up her two controlled asssesments for english lang, lit this month, she was a bag of nerves and felt sick all morning. She did pretty well in the practice achieving an A for both, but for the actual test got a D and a C. Will this stop her from achieving an overall A for this subject. She has been told she cannot retake these two tests. The two tests make up 15 % of the overall mark.

Tortu Fri 22-Jul-11 22:22:09

The simple answer is no. If she gets A*s in all other sections she should be fine (gulp).


Ok, I don't know which exam board you're referring to, but will assume it's AQA (as that's the most common one). It really depends what assessments they actually were. I know you've said they were worth 15% of the overall mark, but there are a couple that fall into this category i.e. were they worth 15% each, or were they worth 15% combined together (just checking, because it is confusing!)?

I suspect you're talking about the Language GCSE only (Literature has only one CA, which is worth 25% of the overall mark- it's the one that involves a comparison with a Shakespeare and something else), in which case you are only talking about one GCSE rather than the lit and the lang. I'm also guessing that you're talking about the creative writing component, which has two parts to it.

Technically she cannot do it again. However, I'd be interested to know what is meant by the 'practice' you're talking about because I'm not quite sure what the school was doing and don't know the full situation...PM me if you want to know more about an area that some schools are treating quite hazily.

1. I'd be really worried about why she got so nervous. There are some really hefty CAs in English, as in all the subjects and she has got nervous on two of the less significant ones. Have to say we are also regarding these as being the most straightforward ones in English. I'd be really, really worried about making a fuss as it may make her more nervous for more important CAs. And what about the exams? Why has she got so nervous for these two?

2. You could write a polite letter of concern to the school. There are different options for CAs and the school is obviously running them in an 'exam style'. You can actually sit them in quite a relaxed fashion over the course of a series of lessons. If you feel that this would be more appropriate for her, perhaps say so now. We would certainly make allowances for this.

3. The school is learning and, probably, a little stressed. We're all worried that this is a guinea pig year group and nobody really knows what they're doing with the CAs. In our school we will actually be running them more 'exam style' next year, as our students haven't taken them seriously at all. Wish we'd had a single one who'd reacted in the way your daughter did. I've spent most of the past month patrolling the corridors during Year 10 lessons with a trail of naughties behind me. I've had to remove an average of 15 children from our 14 sets each period for distracting others!

4. AQA have told us emphatically that we should not give out letter grades to students and, in fact, the marks we use to assess students come in bands with numbers attached. The school is only guessing the grades- they can work it out roughly, but this is not definitive. Whilst I understand that the grades were criterion rather than norm-referenced in the past, I don't think we're fully sure what they're going to do this time.

Get her to relax over the hols.

prudaloo Fri 22-Jul-11 22:22:46

Are you sure she can't re-sit? I think I have heard of re-sits for this; maybe contact HOD?

examstress Fri 22-Jul-11 22:39:36

Examining board is AQA each tests is worth 7.5%, total of 15% for both. One for english language and one for english literature. The marking is given by band, I believe 5 to be the highest A* equivalent.

examstress Fri 22-Jul-11 22:40:06

The students were told the cannot resit.

PonceyMcPonce Fri 22-Jul-11 22:42:12

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

examstress Fri 22-Jul-11 22:43:04

The practice was just a rough copy draft of a similar style looked over by the teacher and given a mark.

Kez100 Fri 22-Jul-11 22:47:27

If there are 5 bands, surely band 5 has to be a bit more than A star? More like A and A star, leaving bands 1,2,3,4 to cover BCDEFGU.

examstress Sat 23-Jul-11 14:42:03

The lang assessment was on Conflict. The Other was Recreations which I presume was the Literature CA.

SecretSquirrels Sat 23-Jul-11 14:57:05

Agree about the Y10s being guinea pigs. These controlled assessments in English seem very arduous to me. Some of them involve many hours in exam conditions writing up to 2000 words. No wonder many children are nervous.
I have two DSs one loves tests and the other is a bag of nerves. Luckily the latter is in Y8 and I am hoping these CAs will have gone by the time it's his turn.

Ironically I don't think they are even a good test of ability. They are given the title a few days before hand to do some thinking and planning. DS1 wrote his whole 800 words out at home and reproduced it from memory in the test hmm. He has a photographic memory.

debhawk Sat 30-Jul-11 20:45:40

Hello - I'm English HOD at my school. I could bang on about the ins and outs of CAs for ages, but I won't! I'll just say that she CAN have a second attempt if exam board is, indeed, AQA. She can't do the exact same task but can do something very similar - eg, if she's done a film review for her 'moving image' CA, she could do another review of a different film.

Second attempts are a massive headache for schools; they have to be supervised and done under exam-style conditions so if you have three kids in a class of thirty who need a second attempt ... well, I am sure you can see the logistical difficulties. I can understand why some schools have a policy of no second attempts but, as I say, the exam board does allow it. Tell the school that your daughter is happy to do the second attempt after school and that you will help her prepare at home so that all she will need is a member of staff willing to supervise her doing it.

SharperSeven Sat 30-Jul-11 21:16:51

Deffo saw re-sits happening where I teach; did involve about six hous work after school but the ones doing it were really keen to resit and the HOD happy to sit with them.

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