Should GCSE Format be changed over the Next Few Years? Education is the most significant aspect of any society. An educated society reflects upon the education system of the society. The standard displayed and maintained in the educational system is hence displayed in the citizens…
Recently, the education standards in the ‘General Certificate of Secondary Education’ have come under serious debate from educationists and people from the political circles, widely giving rise to the notion that the GCSE examination should altogether be abolished and replaced by another like the E-Bac. GCSE has recently been under heavy fire for leaving teenagers underprepared for University Education. The exam has been failing to train teenagers for the degree level of education (Shepherd, 2012). The gcse has been lagging behind in training students for higher education, especially in subjects like mathematics, geography, chemistry, biology, English and English Literature. GCSE has been found more focused on the results that the exams generate and not a broader prospect of education (Baker, 2012). The amount of course work has also been considerably reduced over the past decade. It has been reviewed by ofqual (regulator of qualification), that GCSE has been becoming increasingly easier over the past decade, which is suggestive of falling standards of Education (Shepherd, 2012). ...
tudents coming to out of the GCSE did not possess necessary skills regarding critical thinking and writing, which were necessarily required for the degree courses (Shepherd, 2012). The poll also revealed that the lecturers teaching the degree level subjects of English, business studies, geography and psychology were unimpressed by the exam standard and wanted more open-ended questions and an independent study orientation (shepherd, 2012). MCQ’s restrict the student’s ability to learn and remember complex forms of data and information, as it focuses on testing the students for parts of information on topics. Many believe that with the passing years the MCQ content of the exams has been greatly increasing while the descriptive essay like questions in the exams have reduced considerably, which are the real indicators of the amount and level of learning. In the 2012 review by ofqual, it was put forth that as compared to 2001, in 2010 human geography exam had fewer questions that tested the scientific knowledge of the students; 2008 biology exam also had an increased number of short answers and MCQ’s as compared to the exam in 2003; the 2010 geography exam was testing the pupils on fewer topics as compared to the exam that was put forth in the year 2001; and for the subject of Chemistry 2008 exam also showed more GCSE level questions as compared to the year 2003 (Shepherd, 2012). The Education Secretary, Micheal Gove says that the system of GCSE was “for a different age and a different world” (BBC, 2012). Mr. Gove believes the GCSE system to be outdated and that new exam system like E-Bac could help raise the bar again. The education secretary believes that changes in education system are necessary so that there can be “truly rigorous exams, competitive with the ...
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Not every subject is the same and the need to urgently reform one subject or one part of the format, may not be matched by a similar need in another subject. In order to address this question, the essay will briefly review the history of the GCSE and identify those features that are felt to be in need of change and can be changed.
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