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Are they stil allowed to take the texts into the English GSCE exam?

(76 Posts)
Titsywoo Mon 24-Apr-17 22:09:34

DD is in year 7 and apparently they are starting to study Romeo and Juliet now as it is a GCSE text and they don't get to take it into the exam so they need to learn it by heart confused.

Surely she has this wrong?

Hassled Mon 24-Apr-17 22:11:12

The new curriculum is "closed book" which means she's right - you don't take the texts in any more.

Hassled Mon 24-Apr-17 22:11:55

But I don't think anyone expects them to know it off by heart grin.

Ontopofthesunset Mon 24-Apr-17 22:12:38

Yes, even if they can't take it into the exam they don't need to learn it by heart! They only need to learn a few choice quotations. My son this year has one open book exam (the Shakespeare) and one exam without texts (novel and poems) as well as a criticism paper.

TheFifthKey Mon 24-Apr-17 22:13:24

Yes, no books allowed, but they don't need to learn whole texts by heart! They will get an extract to quote from in the text and will need to know key quotations from the rest of the text, although possibly paraphased if necessary. So more memory work needed than previously but not amazing feats!

Titsywoo Mon 24-Apr-17 22:15:40

Well that's good - I thought it sounded insane! But starting on it now? Are all schools exam factories or is this particularly bad? Each termly report already says what they think she will get at GCSE for each subject. It's crazy confused.

Trifleorbust Tue 25-Apr-17 02:08:47

No. They will need to learn any quotes they want to use which, for the higher grades, will mean quite a bit learning off by heart.

mummytime Tue 25-Apr-17 07:33:36

At my DDs school they study 2 or 3 Shakespeare plays before starting GCSEs, and a couple of these will be the Set texts. There is a choice of texts and different groups will study different ones according to their teachers judgement.
They do need to learn quotes, but these will be chosen in advance, and are pretty brief. Using them correctly will still earn the main bulk of the marks.

Your DD is starting so young as there are lots of skills to learn in analysing a text, especially Shakespeare.

crumpet Tue 25-Apr-17 07:37:50

I don't remember taking books in for O level English - which I appreciate was a while ago grin

DrDreReturns Tue 25-Apr-17 07:40:32

I just don't understand the mindset behind forcing students to learn passages / formulae off by heart! Surely it would be more useful to study the text in more depth or learn more techniques instead of rote learning!

pieceofpurplesky Tue 25-Apr-17 07:42:03

They haven't taken books in for years

oklumberjack Tue 25-Apr-17 07:43:22

I was the first year to take GCSE's back in 1988. We were never allowed the texts! I never knew it was a thing!

OvariesForgotHerPassword Tue 25-Apr-17 07:44:11

I took my GCSEs in 2010, we weren't allowed our books in the exam then.

oklumberjack Tue 25-Apr-17 07:45:00

Yes, I remember learning the important speeches/quotes/soliloquies in Macbeth off by heart so I could recall them in my exam. Didn't everyone can then? We still had in depth learning and deep discussion of the work.

oklumberjack Tue 25-Apr-17 07:45:15

*Back then.

fruityb Tue 25-Apr-17 07:46:01

Learn key quotations and are given an extract to talk about in the paper which then has a theme they have to relate to the entire text. I had my class learning quotations from a Christmas carol and I say them as often as I can in lessons. However they won't be penalised if they get them a little off so long as the meaning is still the same.

IAmTheBFG Tue 25-Apr-17 07:47:04

What everyone else has said is right. They're aren't allowed to take in any texts so when they take the GCSE they need to know quotes from the modern text, the Shakespeare play, the 18th/19th century text and the 14 poems they have studied. I'm not entirely sure why they aren't allowed to take in the books though, surely your ability to memorise quotes doesn't make you any better or worse at analysing them.

Specialmeasuresofgin Tue 25-Apr-17 07:47:35

We took the text in for the literature test in the 90s to read a passage and explain certain points of it.

There are also 15 or so poems which they Do have to know by heart. Lengthy ones too.

A nightmare for kids like mine with Sen.

ActuallyThatsSUPREMECommander Tue 25-Apr-17 07:48:26

The problem with having say, Great Expectations in the exam room is that you'll spend so much time finding quotes.

I've never done an open book exam - do you get to bring in your own copy with all your annotations or does it have to be a virgin copy.

HerRoyalFattyness Tue 25-Apr-17 07:49:12

We weren't allowed the books when I did GCSEs And that was 10 years ago (Jesus I feel old!)

DoctorDonnaNoble Tue 25-Apr-17 07:50:53

Actually - it changed over the years when I first started teaching you could have your copy with notes. Then it moved to clean copy. Now it's closed text again.

fruityb Tue 25-Apr-17 10:35:06

The poetry paper does give them one poem printed, they won't know which till they start. They do need to compare it to one they don't have but at least they'll be able to speak about the one there

mummytime Tue 25-Apr-17 10:35:12

It used to be a clean copy - but you would have got used to that edition in class, so you knew "where" your quotes were. I have two older DC who both were allowed clean texts in their exams. For poetry you had to study the anthology, but weren't allowed the anthology in the exam and wouldn't know which poems would come up, but I believe the poems would be printed?

I have sat quite a few open book exams at a high level - and they could actually be far more challenging as you don't get marks for the right "facts" but for how you apply and analyse those facts. I think Norway (?) was experimenting with allowing access to the internet in exams.

HalfCarrot Tue 25-Apr-17 11:06:40

We had all our notes written in our books so we could just copy them out in the exam. The whole year did it, notes dictated by the teachers. Unsurprisingly we did quite well hmm

FozzieMK Tue 25-Apr-17 11:15:59

I did read somewhere that they will no longer get an anthology in the poetry part of the English Literature GCSE.

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