AQA and the AMSP joint professional development

Thursday 7th May 2020

In the Autumn Term, Chris Savage, an Area Coordinator in the East of England, planned a day that combined A level problem-solving teaching ideas with a review of the Edexcel A level exams. It was a very popular day, and one comment received in the feedback was that it would be good to have other sessions but with a different exam board. Therefore, a second day, based around AQA exams combined with problem solving, was organised for Monday 9 March 2020 at Comberton Village College.

David McEwan (AQA) led an excellent morning session covering a wide range of examination topics which included calculator usage, the principles behind the AQA model for assessment, and marking. Some lively discussion resulted from the collaborative assessment tasks that we undertook.

In the afternoon, we were asked to imagine ourselves back as students in a Year 12 classroom. We were then led through some problem-solving ideas and resources by Bernard Murphy (MEI). This certainly highlighted some of the more competitive mathematicians amongst us, whilst providing a fantastic opportunity to discuss teaching experiences.

Feedback from the event was, again, very positive. All delegates seemed to appreciate the opportunity to take part in two distinct aspects of classroom work: a morning of exam preparation and improving student outcomes in exams, balanced with an afternoon of pedagogy. Moreover, we were impressed with the dedication shown by our teaching colleagues who travelled to the event. We had 19 teachers from 17 different schools, some of whom had travelled over 80 miles to join the event.

Your local Area Coordinator is always interested in feedback about the type of professional development you find most useful. The AMSP are finding that the model for this event is a very popular one, and we will be looking to repeat and extend it as soon as circumstances permit. In the meantime, we hope that many of you are taking the opportunity to access our online professional development opportunities on offer whilst restrictions remain in place.

By Helen Harris

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