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German Gcse as an external candidate

(58 Posts)
chillie Fri 20-Jan-17 18:37:51

My dd is in yr9 and has decided not to take German GCSE as one of her options as she prefers other subjects. I have pointed out to her that it is very likely that she would get a level 9 and she agrees but says that she is likely to get a level 9 in all the subjects she has chosen too, and does not have room for this one.
Last summer she did the German 2014 foundation paper as her end of year exam and got a 'c' so I think that if she is able to get 'c' now then it would be better for her to do the exam this summer, two years early , as she has already done three years study for it rather than drop it with no qualification at all. she is not keen on the 'c' but I would be over the moon with a 'c', not just 'a's count. However the school won't do it as their grade average and therefore league tables would drop so I have to organise it myself. Anyone know how to go about this? I don't know if or even what a controlled assessment is or is part of the exam. The board is aqa I think and I have had a look but can't tell what I'm looking at.
Any and all help very gratefully received

user1484226561 Fri 20-Jan-17 19:06:59

wht is the point of doing it now? it won't ever count towards her GCSEs, she is only in year 9. GCSEs only count if they are taken in year 10-11, and sometimes only 11.

This is because it is very easy to get all A*s if you take one exam every six months for 5 years, 10 A* for almost everyone! So they only count if taken all together.

And yes, you need controlled assessments, and that will most likely not be possible.

If she is only getting a C now, she would be unlikely to get 9 in year 11, to be honest.

Laughingcamel Fri 20-Jan-17 22:12:13

Home educated youngsters tend to spread gcse / igcse over 2-3 years. They do not suffer at all from this. It does not usually matter if they are different years.
An igcse is quite often easier to arrange as an external candidate. There is loads of info on wiki-pages under " home education igcse" or similar.

user1484226561 Sat 21-Jan-17 01:59:48

They do not suffer at all from this.

you should come and meet some of the devastated, sobbing parents U have to deal with at enrollment every year, when they realise for the first time that their precious snowflakes have NOTHING in the GCSE stakes, and the majority of their carefully accumulated A* are considered worthless, taken separately and individuality, because most candidates can get all A*s doing it like that.

There's always the few that simply don't believe it, and come back begging day after day, with their semi-educated offspring, who have always believed and trusted in their parents philosophy that they can do it how they want, and are finding out for the first time that they are right royally screwed.

to be honest, the youngsters rarely seem particularly moved, its the parents who break

daphnedill Sat 21-Jan-17 08:21:31

I work as a home tutor for German after teaching in secondary schools for 25 years.

Firstly, I'm sorry to disappoint you, but it's unlikely that a pupil would achieve the new level 9 after a 'C' at the end of Year 9, unless she wasn't given the opportunity to do higher papers and could, in fact, have achieved more.

Secondly, there is no coursework in IGCSEs (there is in GCSE), but you would have to arrange a speaking assessor. I suppose the school could theoretically enter her as an external candidate (would need to check the regulations) and her own teacher would be the assessor.

Thirdly, I agree with others that I don't really see the point. The grade won't count towards anything. She will forget/remember her German, whether or not she does the exam. If she really has an interest in the language, she would be better keeping it up by perhaps reading online or going on holiday. There are sometimes opportunities at uni to pick up a language as a module or extra.

Laughingcamel Sat 21-Jan-17 10:07:56

I personally know many home educated young people who have spread out level 2 exams. Absolutely none have had any difficulty getting into post-16 college, 6th forms or university.
You seem to think rather poorly of home educated youngsters. Sad.

chillie Sat 21-Jan-17 10:09:23

Thank you to all of you who have taken the time and trouble to reply.
My DD got a 'c/b' (blue on the chart) at the end of year 8. She will still be taking 11 GCSE's through her school at the end of year 11, that won't change.
I agree that it won't count towards her countable tally of exams taken at the same time but it will be a measurable statement of an extra language. There are thousands of children who do early native language exams every year, I'm sure that these exams are not considered useless outright.

chillie Sat 21-Jan-17 10:15:06

Laughingcamel Why do you think I think poorly of home educated children?
What did I say that gave you that impression. I think all education is good and whether home, day school or boarding school, is dependant on the child and their needs.

NicknameUsed Sat 21-Jan-17 10:16:47

If she is taking 11 GCSEs, why does she need another one? Universities aren't interested in anything more than 10, which is what is standard round here.

CauliflowerSqueeze Sat 21-Jan-17 10:28:16

A "c" is the equivalent of a level 4, roughly.
It's unlikely (even with lessons) that she would get to level 9.

If she doesn't want to do it, why push her? Why don't you go to night school and do German GCSE yourself?

Laughingcamel Sat 21-Jan-17 10:58:58

Chillie, sorry, I was addressing user1484226561

chillie Sat 21-Jan-17 11:00:31

I think somewhere that I must have confused all of you. My DD does not need to get to a level 9 as she will not be doing German in yr 11. She needs to get a 'c' this summer (2017) which is not impossible since she got a 'c' last summer(2016). The question I have is not if or why she is doing it, it is how do I go about it?
Thank you Laughingcow for directing me towards IGCSE's.

BigGreenOlives Sat 21-Jan-17 11:09:47

What would be the point of having a grade C GCSE taken at a different date to her other exams? I can see no benefit to her at all. 11 good GCSEs are quite sufficient and if she isn't getting mainly higher than C grades she should concentrate on what she's got. I speak as someone whose children have done 2 languages getting A*s in both. DD2 used the foundation level French GCSE as revision for her end of year 7 exams, she got a very high pass. The standard is not high. Apologies to those whose children have worked hard for 5 years to achieve these grades but they have shown far more dedication & probably overcome adversity in achieving their grades and colleges/future employers will be able to see this.

LIZS Sat 21-Jan-17 11:29:59

One paper isn't the whole exam though. What about the Speaking and listening, oral etc? We had same issue with Italian. Languages is one of dd's strengths and she picked it up quickly but had to drop it in y10. Although it was a disappointment at the time , realistically languages are readily available to learn later on. Even mfl degrees often include ab initio courses. A c in y9 really won't go far. If she wants to keep it going have a look at futurelearn , with free online courses available in various languages.

Stopmithering Sat 21-Jan-17 11:39:36

Chillie, I have taught GCSE German for over twenty years.
If your DD wants to take German this summer, ask her school if she can be entered. You would probably be expected to fund this yourself.
Students this year are still on the old style GCSE with controlled assessment, which means that, as well as entering for the Listening and Reading papers, she will need to submit two pieces of written and two pieces of oral controlled assessment. The questions need to be set by a teacher and the speaking assessment is usually carried out by a teacher.
If there are no other candidates at her school, they may be reluctant to do this, as it is quite a lot if extra work for the staff. However, if students in Years 10 or 11 are entering, it should be easy to slot her in.
Having said all this, when you say she did the Foundation paper, what do you mean? There is a big difference between having a go at the Listening and Reading papers and producing oral and written work, especially at the top grades. Unless she were a native speaker, it is highly unlikely that a typical Year 9 student would be able to produce the kind of language expected without being taught the GCSE course.
Does any of that help?
Incidentally, GCSE is a GCSE, no matter when it was taken.
It only can't be used by the school in their figures, but there is no way it won't 'count' for your DD.

chillie Sat 21-Jan-17 11:41:19

BigGreenOlives, I'm not sure you read my original post properly. My dd is on track to achieve 11 grade 9 GCSE's at the end of year 11 not including German. A grade 'c' in German this summer at the end of yr 9 will give her a measurable, visible achievement in an extra language. It will not count towards university or A levels, that's fine, it doesn't need to, she will have enough other subjects anyway. My way of thinking is that she has already done the work to get a 'c', for the sake of (I think) 2-3 days of extra exams she might as well get a visible record of having done German instead of no record of it. All the work is already being done by the school, all the girls (grammar school) will be sitting end of year exams in old foundation papers anyway so all the work for a foundation paper is already done.

chillie Sat 21-Jan-17 12:13:18

LIZS and stopmithering thank you for your input, this is what i'm after, this type of info. DD has been taught German with the intention to eventually take the highter paper, however the school used the 2014 foundation paper as the end of year exam last summer. They did also do the speaking and listening papers with a cd and oral with the teacher on a one to one. this is the bit that worries me, hence I came on here to ask. I don't think the school will support my dd doing the exam in school this summer. It could lead to other girls asking for the same in year 9. My dd is by no means the only child who got a 'c' in the foundation paper last year. It could open a floodgate of parents and girls all saying that they too would like to do an official exam in not just this subject but other subjects too before they drop them to concentrate on their GCSE chosen subjects.
I have promised my daughter that I won't ask her to do extra work with a tutor and that it will just be a few extra exams. she knows that will include and oral etc but I am struggling to find where I can enter her without signing her up to an actual course.

ShanghaiDiva Sat 21-Jan-17 12:21:05

my DS took IGCSE as an external candidate. We live in China - but am sure the procedure is similar - contact the exam board and they will give you a list of centres which take external candidates and then contact them to enter for the examination.
IGCSE has no coursework element.

titchy Sat 21-Jan-17 12:22:28

Please don't bother. If she applies for a sixth form or university place where average GCSE grades are taken into account the C will have have pulled her average down and maybe cost her a place. For what? Nothing. And seriously you may be impressed wth a C grade but honestly no one else will be.

Can I also caution your assertion that she'll get 11 x grade 9s. No one knows what a grade 9 will look like, they won't be awarded very often at all. They are higher than the current Astar grade in case you weren't certain of the equivalence.

fritillery Sat 21-Jan-17 12:43:46

I'm planning to teach my DD for 2 language GCSEs, and will try to find a centre that will accept her to take the exam. She will take them early. In your DD's case she doesn't "need" an exam result unless she intends to do German at university. So rather than end up with a mediocre exam result which means little, and then allow her to forget her German, why not encourage her actually to make something out of her knowledge of German, so that she can use it and enjoy it in later life? You could send her on a language exchange this summer, so that she learns to communicate with German people, and experiences the culture, feels more of a European, etc. My DD will be doing plenty of language exchanges.

cricketballs Sat 21-Jan-17 13:32:43

I was about to post but titchy beat me to it grin

No one knows what a grade 9 is as there hasn't been any awarded yet. This grade is for the top, top performing students in the country; for your DD's sake please lower your and hers expectations

Janek Sat 21-Jan-17 13:54:18

The two pieces of wriiten coursework and two pieces of spoken coursework will need to be submitted to the exam board at the start of May. My year 11s have one piece of spoken coursework still to do and I am panicking (a bit) about getting it done in time, along with completing course content and giving lots of practice for the reading and listening exams. To do all four pieces would be a lot of work ime.

NicknameUsed Sat 21-Jan-17 14:02:19

Does your DD actively want to do a GCSE this year if the chances of getting a good grade are quite remote?

Is this idea of doing an early GCSE for your benefit or hers?

IrenetheQuaint Sat 21-Jan-17 14:12:40

If she really does get 11 grade 9s (and, as other posters have said, given that she is only in Y9 and the new GCSEs haven't been examined yet this is rather a bold assertion) then having a random C in German as well will make her list of grades look worse, rather than better.

fritillery Sat 21-Jan-17 16:29:05

Do you have to "declare" all exam results when you apply to University? Could the OP's DD simply not mention an early GCSE that she had done badly in?

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