Statement to Parliament: Revised design and technology GCSE

We are reforming GCSEs to make sure that they give students the best possible preparation for further and higher education, and for employment. We want new GCSEs to set expectations which match those of the best education systems in the world, with rigorous assessment that provides a reliable measure of students’ achievement. The reforms are extensive and represent a new qualification gold standard.

Today (04 November 2015), I am publishing subject content for design and technology GCSE, for first teaching in 2017. This follows a public consultation which ran from 1 July 2015 until 26 August 2015. The new content moves the subject on from its craft-based roots into a cutting edge qualification focused upon both design and making, that will better prepare students for further study and careers.

The content emphasises the iterative design processes that all students should understand and be able to demonstrate and which is at the core of contemporary practice. It will allow both breadth and depth of knowledge, without limiting students on the materials they can work with, enabling them to make choices appropriate to their design, rather than creating a design around a particular material.

The new GCSE also sets out in greater detail the mathematical and scientific content that students must know and understand in relation to design and technology.

These changes aim to ensure that all students have the knowledge and skills to design and make prototypes, using the best material, equipment and techniques, to solve real world and relevant problems across a range of contexts.

The new GCSE in design and technology will be introduced for first teaching in September 2017.

Copies of the GCSE content, the consultation and the government’s response to it will be placed in both House libraries.

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