News story: Further consultation outcomes in GCSE, AS and A level subjects

Ofqual has confirmed the assessment arrangements for several GCSE, AS and A level qualifications that will be taught from September 2017. These decisions follow 3 consultations which ran during 2015 and are for the following subjects:

GCSE AS and A level
Sociology Statistics
PE (short course) Geology

We consulted on assessment arrangements for GCSE sociology (July-September 2015), AS and A level statistics (September-November 2015) and GCSE PE and AS and A level geology and politics (November 2015-January 2016). We have made these decisions now alongside the finalisation of the subject content from the Department for Education (DfE).

In each consultation our proposals were for how much non-exam assessment we should require in each subject, whether GCSE subjects should use tiering in their assessment and what assessment objectives we should set for exam boards to use in their qualifications.

In making these decisions we have considered responses to the consultation as well as equality and regulatory impact assessments that we undertook. Our decisions also reflect the subject content requirements published by DfE for both GCSEs and AS and A levels.

We have set out our decisions and the reasons for them in full under each of the consultation pages.

The decisions we have taken are summarised below.

Non-exam assessment

In these subjects we decided not to change the weightings for non-exam assessment in these qualifications from those that we consulted on. We explain why in the decisions documents in the consultation pages (above). The weightings for non-exam assessment that we will require in reformed qualifications are set out below.

Subject GCSE – current weighting of non-exam assessment GCSE – new weighting of non-exam assessment A level – current weighting of non-exam assessment A level – new weighting of non-exam assessment AS – current weighting of non-exam assessment AS – new weighting of non-exam assessment
Sociology 0% 0% N/A N/A N/A N/A
PE (short course) 60% 40% N/A N/A N/A N/A
Statistics N/A N/A 0 to 4.16% 0% 0 to 8.33% 0%
Geology N/A N/A 20-30% 0% (with separate reporting of practical skills) 20-30% 0
Politics N/A N/A 0% 0% 0% 0%


In line with our consultation proposals, we have decided that neither GCSE sociology nor PE (short course) should have a tiered assessment. In line with current practice, all reformed AS and A levels will be untiered.

Assessment Objectives

After considering the responses to our consultation and reviewing the changes the DfE has made to the content requirements following its consultation, we have finalised the assessment objectives for the subjects on which we consulted. The final versions for each subject are available and should be read alongside the published DfE content.

We will shortly be launching consultations on the conditions and guidance we need to put in place to implement our decisions and, where appropriate, set any further detailed requirements needed to secure standards in a particular subject.

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