Exam Info booklet - GCE 2011 by VISAKH


									  Aylesbury High School

Information on GCE Examination Procedures
         January and Summer 2011


Exam Noticeboard ……. ………………..……………...…...……… 2
Exam Timetable ………………………………...…….......….…….. 2
Punctuality ………………………………...………….…….….……. 3
     Seating Arrangements

Exam Equipment and prohibited items ……………….………….. 3
During the Exam …………………………………….………..…..… 4
Exam Clashes …………………….…………………………..…….. 5
GCE and GCSE Exam timings ……………...……….….….…..…. 6
Leaving the Exam Hall(s) ……………………….……………….…. 7
GCE Exams – practical/coursework units ……………...….……… 7
     MFL orals
     Communications and Culture
     Drama practical(s)
     Physics practical(s)
     Chemistry practical(s)
     Art and Design

Other Qualifications …………………………………………….…. 11
     AQA Baccalaureate
     Extended Project Qualification (EPQ)

GCE/GCSE Exam entries for subjects
not studied at schooL ………………………………..….……….…. 11
Problems and Queries ………….…………………..………….…... 11
Contact Details ………………………………………...…..……….. 11
Special Consideration for GCE/GCSE exams ………..………..... 12
Exam Results ………………..……………………..………...……... 13
External Exam Dates …………………….……………...….….…… 13
Examination Boards ………………………..………….……..…...… 14

      Examination Information for students in Y12 and Y13

All students in Y12 – Y13 sit their external exams in specified venues. These could
be the Main Hall, Harding Hall, Drama Studio or Gym or held in designated
classrooms. Whatever the venue, public exam rules apply to everybody in the
room. These rules are displayed on the inside and outside of the exam venues
throughout the whole of the external exam sessions.
GCE module exams take place in January and May/June/July each year. Some
students are studying subsidiary subjects to GCSE level (i.e. Italian) and these
exams will take place in May/June each year.
Year 12 students sit an internal test in each of their subjects in November. These
take place during lesson time in the classrooms and the results will be given to
students during lessons and reported to parents/guardians in the Y12 reports.

Exam Noticeboard

The exam noticeboard is on the corridor outside Mrs Adams’ office. All
information concerning exams (both internal and external) is displayed on
this noticeboard including timetables and exam venues. It is up to you to
check this noticeboard each day to ensure that you are up to date with all
exam information concerning exam venues, exam dates and exam starting
Some exam information can also be found in the Examinations section of the AHS
website (www.ahsonline.co.uk) under the ‘Students’ button but you should always
use the noticeboard as the first point of reference as some website information
may not be up to date.

Exam Timetables

GCE and GCSE candidates will receive a personal itemised timetable for each
exam season (January or Summer) with your name, date of birth and exam
candidate number on it from your form tutor. All exams for which you have been
entered will be listed on your copy of the timetable. Please check this list very
carefully and if there is an error - you are not down for an exam you are expecting
to take or you have been entered for an exam you were not expecting to take,
please come and see Mrs Adams immediately.
It will also tell you what date your exam is and whether it is in the morning or
afternoon - highlight your exams in two different colours, one colour for the
morning exams and one for the afternoon exams so you can see at a glance when
you should be in school.

Please do not lose your timetable. Mrs Adams can reprint it for you if you do
lose it but there will be a charge of £2 (which will be donated to the Agape
fund) for each reprinted timetable.


Morning exams - Candidates must be outside the correct venue before 8.45 am
and waiting in silence. All morning exams start by 09:00.
Afternoon exams - Candidates must be outside the correct venue before 12:45
pm and waiting in silence. All afternoon exams start by 13:00 (unless you have
been told otherwise).
When staff arrive to call candidates into the exam room everybody must be silent.
Disobeying this instruction can cause delays and mistakes. Candidates are
reminded that disobeying the instructions of invigilators can result in sanctions
being applied.
Arriving late for an exam is discourteous to the exam invigilators and causes
problems at the start of the exam which is disruptive to the other candidates taking
the exam. Sometimes late arrival may be caused by such unforeseen
circumstances as the school bus running late and if this should happen you should
telephone the school immediately on 01296 388222 and leave your name and a
message that you may be late for your exam.

          All exam boards do not permit candidates who arrive later than
                   9.30 am or 2.00 pm to sit their examinations.

Seating Arrangements
Candidates for external exams are usually seated in alphabetical order.

Anybody who is too ill to attend an exam (both internal and external) must
telephone the school as early as possible in the morning and candidates taking
external exams must bring a doctor’s note to Mrs Adams as soon as possible.
It is not possible to reschedule GCSE or GCE exams during the exam series, but
GCE modules may be retaken at a later date. This school does not recommend
retaking GCSE exams as Y12 students are usually heavily involved in working for
their AS modules and having to revise and work towards a GCSE at the same time
may be detrimental to their work, especially as GCSE exams usually involve a
coursework element.

Exam Equipment and prohibited items

Candidates may only take necessary equipment into the exam room – remember
to use a transparent pencil case/plastic bag. You must not use correction pens,
correction fluid, gel pens or highlighter pens on your answer sheets. All ipods and
MP3 players must be turned off and left in lockers – bags should also be safely
stored away must not be brought into the exam room or left in the corridors as
items can go missing. Mobile phones may be left at reception but they must be
named before they are handed in. If your locker is in a classroom you will not be
able to retrieve your belongings while lessons are being taught.
Anybody taking a mobile phone, ipod or MP3 player into an exam room is
likely to be disqualified – candidates can be disqualified from future exams if
the exam boards think the offence is serious enough.
Candidates are responsible for bringing all the equipment they need to each exam.
This includes calculators, batteries and ink cartridges. Candidates cannot share
equipment during an exam. Items such as keys, glasses cases, calculator cases,
purses etc must be placed on the floor under your desk for the duration of the
            You may only write in black ink on your exam papers.

You may bring a drink – STILL WATER ONLY – into the examination halls but it
should be in a clear plastic bottle with the label removed and have a sports top.
No food substances/sweets/chewing gum are permitted in the exam halls
(Students who have a medical need i.e. diabetes should talk to Mrs Adams before
exams begin). No drink or food whatsoever may be taken into the school
laboratories during practical exams.
Please do not doodle on the exam paper/answer booklet. Examiners can and do
disallow defaced papers.
So - to summarise the above ‘do not’ points:
    don’t be late
    don’t bring your mobile phone, ipod, mp3 player etc into the exam hall
    don’t use tippex, corrector pens, gel pens, or highlighter pens on your
     answer sheet (if you have to answer questions in spaces on the
     question paper, do not use highlighter pens on the answer part of the
    don’t ask to borrow equipment from the school or other candidates
    don’t bring food/sweets/chewing gum into the exam hall (unless by prior
     arrangement with Mrs Adams)
    don’t bring coke, orange squash etc into the exam hall - only still water in a
     sports top bottle is permitted
    don’t doodle on your exam paper.

During the exam

You must enter the exam hall in silence and remain that way until you are released
at the end of the exam. Once you are seated, you will be asked if you need a
wedge to stabilise an unsteady desk. At the beginning of all external GCSE and
GCE exams the invigilator will read out the starting announcement listing exam
rules and regulations. Please listen to them. You will then be asked to check you
have the correct paper and if you have any other questions or queries – if you
need to ask a question, no matter how trivial you may think it is, put up your hand
and an invigilator will come and answer it for you. You will be told of any specific
instructions for your exam paper and then the exam session will be started. The
exact starting and finishing time of your exam will be written on the board at the
front of the exam venue.
You will know if you are entitled to extra time in exams as this will have been
discussed with Mrs Adams or the Special Needs department well in advance of
your exams. The extra time candidates will have their finishing times displayed on
the board as well.
NB: There are some GCE exam modules where extra time is not considered
appropriate; these are AS & A2 Art & Design modules, AS Music modules
and AS Applied ICT modules.
If you need another piece of paper, drop your pencil case or have a query please
put up your hand and an invigilator will come to you. Invigilators cannot help with
the content of the question paper and are not allowed to explain any part of the
paper to you but can assist in other matters.
If, exceptionally, you need to use the toilet or feel unwell, raise your hand and you
will be escorted to the toilet. GCE and GCSE candidates are only allowed to use
the toilet two at a time and have to be escorted to and from it by an invigilator.
I am sure we do not need to remind you that GCE exams last between 1h 30m
and 2h so it is best not to drink too much before an exam for obvious reasons!

Exam Clashes

When you have two or more exams that are timetabled at the same time on the
same date; this is called an ‘exam clash’. Mrs Adams will have worked out in
advance the order in which you are sitting your subjects and will notify you.
GCE clash candidates will need to have a supervised break or supervised lunch
when they have two or more exams timetabled at the same time on the same date.
They need to be kept isolated from other students taking these exams so the
security of the exams is maintained and information cannot be passed between
students on the content of the exam papers. There will be a designated room for
every supervised break or lunch, an invigilator will collect you from your exam
venue and take you to a room where you can:

      Read
      Revise
      Talk to other students in the designated room (quietly)
      Eat or drink
      Move around the supervised area
      Visit the toilet (supervised)

During a supervised break or lunch, students may not:
    Leave the designated room or area (except to visit the toilet under
    Use or have in their possession a mobile phone
    Go to their locker
    Go to the school canteen (you must bring a packed lunch and drink with
    Talk to anybody outside the designated supervision area
    Talk to any other students, apart from those sharing the supervised break or
     lunch, on the way to or before they enter their next exam venue

All students are considered to be under examination conditions while they take
their supervised break or lunch.
At the end of the supervised break/lunch you will be taken to your next exam
venue and you will have to wait inside the hall with the invigilators. You will not
line up with the other candidates outside the hall as you must not speak with any
students before you take your exam.
If you have three lengthy exams scheduled for the same day you may need to
have a supervised overnight break. This happens rarely, but if it is necessary then
your parents/guardians will have been contacted in advance and asked if they will
ensure that for that night only they will guarantee in writing that you will not contact
any person who may have seen the exam paper, use the telephone (mobile or
landline), internet or go outside your home unescorted. You will have to be
collected from school by your parents/guardians and they will have to bring you
into school the next morning and ‘hand you over’ to Mrs Adams.

GCE and GCSE Exam timings

At this school we start exams at 9.00 am in the morning and 1.00 pm in the

 Candidates are not permitted to leave the exam hall until 10.00 am during
          morning exams and 2.30 pm during afternoon exams.

It is not possible to start the exams before 1.00 pm in the afternoon and, as exams
do vary in length, you may not be able to return home on the school bus because
your exam has not ended until after 3.30 pm. This is particularly relevant to
students who have extra time in exams, so if you have a late running exam please
ensure that you have made arrangements to get home safely.

Leaving the Exam Hall(s)

At the end of the exam, once all the papers have been collected the candidates
will be dismissed in silence one row at a time– candidates must not talk until they
are away from the exam room especially if others are still sitting exams. For the
Main Hall this means leaving the corridor in silence and for the Harding Hall this
means silence until outside. If you are leaving the Harding Hall, please DO NOT
leave through the Music Department as this disturbs music lessons. You should
go along the path in front of the Main Hall, but be aware that exams may still be
going on in the Main Hall. Candidates are also reminded that ordinary lessons will
still be taking place in the rest of the school and they should only use designated
revision rooms.

External Exams – practical/coursework units

Some exams have a practical/coursework unit. The content of these units differ
according to subject and level of exam.

MFL orals

These will be with an external examiner and mainly take place prior to the summer
exam period and sometimes extend into it. You will be able to meet the examiner
before the exam on the morning of the day you are due to do the exam.

AS: You will have prepared your oral topic with your teacher and a language
assistant prior to the exam period.

You will have prepared questions relating to each of the twelve sub topic areas
you will be studying. One will be prepared in greater depth and others will act as a
stimulus for the conversation you have with the examiner.

A2: You will have prepared your oral topics with your teacher and a language
assistant prior to the exam period.

You will have to argue your point with an external examiner relating to one of the
nine sub topics you have studied. You will then have to talk for 5 mins on each of
the two cultural topics you have studied.

Communications and Culture

AS: Unit 2 (50% of AS mark)

Written coursework essays are 50% of this component and the coursework
presentation (outlined below) is 50% of this component

The second half of the spring term will be given to the production of your individual
coursework-presentation which will be based on the two earlier coursework essays
and will consist of words, sounds and images addressing the issue of: “Who am I
in context? Exploring Personal and Cultural Identity.

This will bring together the two strands of study, personal and cultural, and may
link explicitly to the earlier course work essays.

This is likely to take the form of a Power Point presentation loop of 6-8 minutes,
designed for an audience of communication and culture students, alternatively it
could be a video or a web-based presentation. This is a complete and polished
piece of work designed to stand alone and be submitted in full for assessment by
your teachers which will be externally moderated by the examination board.

A2: - Unit 4 (50% of A2 mark)

Section A - Case Study (50% of total marks for Coursework)

2000 word study. This is a prescribed question chosen from the Unit 4 sites.
Choose either Site A (The Person – “Celebrity”) or Site B (Cultural Practice –
This is a written component based on your own investigation of source materials
related to your chosen question. Suitable material for inclusion:
• analysis of secondary sources
• identification of a specific focus within the frame of reference of the chosen
• readings of relevant cultural practices and/or products
• response to the chosen question in terms of appropriate key concepts and
   relevant theoretical perspectives.

Section B - Creative Response (50% of total marks for Coursework)
(Based on prescribed question chosen for Case Study)

You will draw on your Case Studies in order to develop an original and creative
idea or argument in relation to your chosen question. This must be designed for an
audience of your peers in a form that is publishable to the web.
The creative work will consist of a presentation. This will be in the form of either:
• a website (at least 3 pages*)
• a multimedia or PowerPoint style presentation with commentary(at least 12
• a pod cast (of three to seven minutes)


In GCE Drama practical exams candidates will be expected to bring all props and
costume for a performance of their work. Lights and sound effects are considered
part of the production but not assessed.

Performances will not be repeated and rearrangement of set performance dates
can only be changed in discussion with the assessing teacher and the examining
board with exceptional reasons.

A/S Practical: Performance Workshop option DA1 is assessed internally and
moderated externally near the end of the Autumn term in Y12. Two components
are assessed - Textual and devised performances. Each performance is
determined by the number of candidates in each group (5 minutes per candidate
per option). The Assessor will publish a programme for performance in advance
and a compulsory weekend technical / dress rehearsal is required.

On the day of assessment candidates will perform without interruption to an
audience of peers and are assessed on the WJEC criteria. A Performance
Evaluation will be submitted, usually by 3.30pm on the day after the performance

A2 Practical : DA3 & DA4 options are examined externally during March of Y13.
Three components are assessed: Textual and Devised performances. Each
performance is determined by the number of candidates in each group (5 minutes
per candidate per option). The teacher will publish a programme for performance
in advance and a compulsory weekend technical / dress rehearsal is required.
All scripts for Devised work must be submitted to the examiner 10 days before the

On the day of assessment candidates will perform without interruption to an
audience of peers and are assessed on the WJEC criteria. A Performance
Evaluation will be submitted within 24 hours of the performance

Physics: AS & A2

Practical assessment is through Practical Skills Assessment (PSA) and Individual
Skills Assignments (ISA). These are carried out within normal lesson time and
your teacher will give you the information you need at the appropriate time.

Chemistry: AS & A2

    Practical skills assessment tasks are completed during the course at
     appropriate times. You will be told in advance when they will be.
    The tasks fall into 3 categories: qualitative, quantative and evaluative.
    The tasks are completed in lesson time in laboratories.
    You shoul dbring normal equipment including a calculator.
    Your best mark from each catergory is submitted to the exam board.

Biology: AS & A2

Practical assessment is through Individual Skills Assignments (ISA). These are
carried out within normal lesson time and your teacher will give you the information
you need at the appropriate time.

Art and Design

These courses all end with a period of preparation time (which takes place during
lessons) followed by a timed exam. These practical exams are held in specialist
art and design rooms and last between 8 and 12 hours spread over two or three

You will be told of the theme for the externally set assignments approximately 8
school weeks before the exam and this time can be used for research, planning
and development purposes. You will need to bring all your preparatory work to the
exam and anything else you will need e.g. objects for your still life, specialist
materials that the art department does not normally stock. You will be allocated a
space to work according to the activity you are doing. Timings for breaks, meals
etc will be agreed at the start of the two/three day exam period.

Exam conditions apply throughout the duration of the exam. You are not allowed
to talk to anyone other than the teacher invigilator, you can drink water from a
plastic bottle but should not eat or drink anything else and you should not leave the
room unless given permission to do so by the teacher invigilator. You must not
bring into the art rooms or use an ipod, mobile phone, MP3 player, or any
other electrical/electronic device, throughout the entire duration of the exam

All exam work including preparation work should be handed in at the end of the
exam period.

Physical Education

Year 12 (AS)

Moderation will be undertaken through centre ‘cluster’ visits.

The visiting moderator will sample candidates’ performance (performer, leader,
official) roles (task 2.1) to ensure that the awarding of marks is in line with the
requirements of the board. Each candidate must produce a log to show 8 weeks
participation and a minimum of 3 formal competitive or performance opportunities.

Task 2.2 Local Study PowerPoint and task 2.3 National Study PowerPoint will be
moderated during the moderation visit. (750 word limit)

                                        - 10 -
Task 2.4 ( 5 sections) will be sent to the moderator on DVD/CD portfolio (including
video clips, record sheets, certificates, witness testimony).

Year 13 (A2)

Moderation will be undertaken through centre ‘cluster’ visits.

The visiting moderator will sample candidates’ Task 4.1 Development plan during
the moderation visit and performance roles (task 4.3) to ensure that the awarding
of marks is in line with the requirements of the board. Each candidate must
produce a log to show 8 weeks participation and a minimum of 3 formal
competitive or performance opportunities.

Task 4.2 International Study PowerPoint (750 word limit) and the Life Plan (task
4.4) will be sent to the moderator on DVD/CD portfolio

AQA Baccalaureate

The AQA Baccalaureate is an overarching qualification taken by students in Year
13. It consists of four elements: 3 A Levels at Grade A*-E; AS Critical Thinking or
General Studies; Extended Project Qualification and an Enrichment Diary. It is
awarded at Distinction, Merit and Pass.

Extended Project Qualification (EPQ)

The Extended Project is a coursework only qualification taken by students in Year
13. The Awarding Body is AQA. Students complete a production log and write a
5000 word essay. Assessment is by completion of the essay, the submission of
the production log and a 10 minute presentation. It is awarded at grades A*-E

GCE/GCSE Exam entries for subjects not studied in school

Each year requests are received from girls who wish to take a GCE or GCSE
exam in a subject that is not studied at school (e.g. Russian, Chinese, Urdu etc).
We are happy to discuss these requests but girls who wish to take any foreign
language exam not studied at the school must first discuss this with Mr Baird, the
Director of the Language College, who will make the candidate aware of all the
implications regarding the exam (e.g. exam boards, subject specification, orals etc)
and she will then discuss the matter with Mrs Adams. Mrs Adams will not process
any requests for entry to foreign language exams without Mr Baird’s authorisation.

If you wish to sit an examination in any other subject apart from MFLs you must
first discuss the matter with the Subject Team Leader (your form tutor or Mrs
Adams can tell you who that is) and they will discuss your request with Mrs

                                        - 11 -
Adams. Mrs Adams will not process any requests for exam entry without
authorisation from the Subject Team Leader.


If you have problems or queries relating to exams please see Mrs Adams as soon
as possible – do not leave it until the morning of the exam or the beginning of
next term.

Contact details

The Exams office is in the lower corridor of the main school block.
Exams email: exams@ahs.bucks.sch.uk
Exams Office direct telephone number: 01296 388227.(voicemail)
Aylesbury High School Reception: 01296 388222

                                       - 12 -
Special Consideration for External Examinations

Every year we receive a number of requests for Special Consideration from parents of
daughters taking public exams and it might be helpful to clarify the school’s position on
these requests.
In the case of illness, the school will support requests for sudden and serious conditions
that apply on the day of the examination only.
If a candidate is suffering from such ongoing conditions as hay fever, glandular fever,
anorexia, depression etc they need to supply a letter from their doctor relating the
symptoms and effects of any medication to the date of the actual exam.
e.g. ‘On Thursday 14 June Sarah was badly affected by symptoms of her hay fever
causing puffy and sore eyes, difficulty in breathing and lack of concentration’.
This can then be sent to the exam board with a form requesting Special Consideration for
Sarah’s exam on Thursday 14 June.
If a candidate is affected for more than one day e.g. for exams on Monday 11, Thursday
14 and Friday 15 June in one week, the doctor’s note, which should be brought to Mrs
Adams early in the following week, should still relate the symptoms and the effects of
any medication to the date of the exams affected.
e.g. ‘Sarah has suffered from severe hay fever symptoms during this week (week
commencing Monday 11 June) which has caused her to have puffy and running eyes,
difficulty in breathing and sleeping at night which will have affected her in her exams’.
We cannot accept ‘blanket’ doctor’s notes for the whole of the exam series. These are
notes that do not specify dates and just have comments such as:
‘Sarah is suffering from hay fever/glandular fever/anorexia and this is affecting her exams’
Any medical condition that might flare up can only be considered with a doctor’s note or
equivalent relating to the specific dates(s). This letter must be received by the school
within 5 days of the exam so it can be submitted to the exam board within their
deadline of 7 days from the date of the exam. It is strongly recommended that medical
advice regarding the control of symptoms for such illnesses as hay fever, glandular fever
etc is sought well in advance of the examination session.
In the case of sudden or unforeseen family circumstances, such as bereavement during
the examination period, special consideration may be applied for.
In all cases, the Examinations Officer, Mrs Adams, must be informed on the day or days
of the paper affected; late notification cannot be supported.
(NB: This information is part of the Examinations section on the school website)
Please note that exam mark adjustments are only relatively minor, so that they do not
compromise the integrity of the standard. The usual adjustment made for candidates who are
unwell on the day of the exam is between 1-2% of the mark achieved (e.g. if a candidate scores,
say 90/120, her adjustment will only be 0.9 - 1.8 of a mark). It is important to note that Special
Consideration is not intended to compensate for all difficulties and some candidates may be
simply too ill or distressed to cope with exams.

                                              - 13 -
Exam Results
January GCE exams
GCE candidates will be told where and when they can collect the results of their January

Summer exams
Before the GCE and GCSE exams start, candidates will have been asked to write their
name and candidate number on an envelope. This will be collected and your results from
each exam board will be collated and put in it. You will be told the date and time that you
can collect your exam results.
If you are not able to collect your envelope in person on results day you may authorise, in
advance, someone else to collect it for you, but this authorisation must be in writing (even
if the person collecting your results is your parent/guardian) and it will be attached to your
results envelope. Give the letter to Mrs Adams and ensure you have signed it. If a
different person has to come and collect it, you must write another letter to Mrs Adams
giving that person permission to collect your results.

 Without a signed letter from you we are not allowed to release results to any third
              party (this includes your parents/guardians or relatives)

If you want your results posted, please put a 1st class stamp on the letter together with
the address you want your results sent to. Unstamped envelopes and uncollected
envelopes will be taken to the school Reception desk and can be collected.

          We do not give out results of exams over the telephone or email.

                       External Exam Dates - January 2011

       First GCE exam on timetable                   Monday 10 January 2011
       Last GCE exam on timetable                    Wednesday 2 February 2011

           GCE results                               Thursday 10 March 2011

                      External Exam Dates - Summer 2011
       First GCE exam on timetable                Monday 16 May 2011
       (Art and MFL Oral exams are usually held prior to this date)

       Last GCE on timetable                             Monday 27 June 2011

       GCE Results                                    Thursday 18 August 2011

       GCSE Results                                   Thursday 25 August 2011

                                            - 14 -
Examination Boards

These are the exam boards that we use for each subject. Their website is also
shown. Dates for external GCE and GCSE exams can be found on these
websites together with subject information. Provisional GCE and GCSE timetables
for the Summer 2011 series can be found on the AHS website
(www.ahsonline.co.uk) in the ‘Examinations’ section.

GCSE exam boards

EDEXCEL                    AQA                OCR
 Chinese                   Italian             Latin

GCE exam boards

EDEXCEL                                  AQA
(www.edexcel.org.uk)                     (www.aqa.org.uk)
Art and Design                            Business Studies
English Lang/Lit                          Communications
English Literature                        Design and Technology
Italian                                   French
Music Technology                          Geography
PE                                        German
Russian                                   Government & Politics
Urdu                                      History
                                          History of Art
                                          Physics B
OCR                                       Psychology A
(www.ocr.org.uk)                          RS
 Biology B
 Critical Thinking
 General Studies
 Applied ICT
 Mathematics (MEI)                        Drama and Theatre Studies
 Further Maths (MEI)                      World Development

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